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[Hack BPG] Obcasus Rites for free

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  • [Hack BPG] Obcasus Rites for free

    I'm just so adored by the idea of Obcasus Rites in Beast Player's Guide, story driven ritual magic of Begotten! And it's almost free for the characters - almost, as you need to buy general Merit Obcasus Initiate (••) - and as I would rather want all PCs to be able to lead the Rites if they want to - I wonder what would be game implications on deleting the need for Obcasus Initiate? Rites mechanics still points you need Communion Condition to start the learning process and I would leave the need for Communion in the game - only bypassing Merit tax on players. Would this unbalance things in general sense? Other implications for Begotten society?


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  • #2
    Balance I don’t know, but I imagine “worship of the Dark Mother” being just as prominent as “teach the mortals via fear” for something Begotten society revolves around.


    MtAw Homebrew: Even more Legacies, updated to 2E

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    • #3
      The prerequisite experience of Obcasus Initiate is the bigger point of contention, I'd think — getting Guidance means a character has been drained of all their Willpower and gotten a full refresh from an overwhelmingly positive personal contact with a vaster entity in a way that means they can't recover more Willpower without hanging out in their Heart for multiple hours; besides tutoring from other Initiates, most Rites are going to be learned through extensive occult research, frequently broadening the horizons of the character's Family Ties, or suffering supernatural violence. That is, as the book notes, an investment of special effort to pursue.

      The implications that has for a Begotten society are a lot, because it means that either your story takes place in a region where the local Beast collective is especially religious or the PCs have all had such an experience and been drawn together by fate or coincidence.


      Resident Sanguinary Analyst
      Currently Consuming: Changeling: the Lost 1e

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Satchel View Post
        The implications that has for a Begotten society are a lot, because it means that either your story takes place in a region where the local Beast collective is especially religious or the PCs have all had such an experience and been drawn together by fate or coincidence.
        It's rather imply that they all can have such experience. Even after this event you need to be able to use Rites by buying trait - which is, in reality, Merit Tax. I just cut the cost. And yes, I plan Guidance for all PCs, sooner or later.
        Last edited by wyrdhamster; 04-22-2018, 11:05 AM.


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        • #5
          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
          which is, in reality, Merit Tax. I just cut the cost.
          Wyrd, the phrase "[resource] tax" does not just mean "price you pay for a thing." Obcasus Initiate represents the opening purchase for a character development path that otherwise mechanically costs less than nothing — two of the means of learning new Rites are to gain and resolve Conditions.

          You're welcome to just give interested players the Merit for free the first time they experience Guidance (possibly offering a dot of Occult for players who aren't interested in pursuing ritemastery), but if your angle is not actually "the player characters in particular get the entry requirements for Obcasus rites waived" but rather "in this game, Beasts do not need to invest special effort in learning how to do Rites at all" then that says different things about your setting.

          Are any of your players actually interested in being the initiate for Obcasus Rites?


          Resident Sanguinary Analyst
          Currently Consuming: Changeling: the Lost 1e

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          • #6
            Seconding Satchel here: being an Initiate says a lot more about the Character in question than just "Can lead a Rite". Just like a fighting style, Aif of Menace or Epic Iron Skin, it says something about the personality, goals, approaches to life etc. (Satchel put it way better than me.)

            Plus unless all PCs are seriously invested, I don't see why they'd need more than one Initiate - 1) you need several Characters to participate anyway, so everyone being able to lead doesn't really give the PCs much, and remember, everyone should have a niche where they excell, and being the Initiate may well be one such niche, and 2) it robs you of that sweet sweet "Go Save Miraculix" plotline. Seriously, I am a proponent of there being few Initiates, as it indicates a devotion far above normal, and their 'power' certainly gives them a certain standing among their Family (think Witchdoctor). This makes them a juicy target and allows them to serve any role from Plot Device, Mentor, Call to Adventure all the way down to McGuffin.
            Don't rob yourself of that, man.

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            • #7
              EDIT: Will repost this in the Ask a Simple Question thread when Wyrdhamster posts his question there.
              Last edited by Master Aquatosic; 04-21-2018, 04:01 PM.


              A god is just a monster you kneel to. - ArcaneArts, Quoting "Fall of Gods"

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Master Aquatosic View Post
                EDIT: Will repost this in the Ask a Simple Question thread when Wyrdhamster posts his question there.
                So you will not answer me. It's Hack concept, this kind topics was made by years in split topics to see implications, on this forum. It's not Simple Question in any vicinity, as we talk about game implications here.
                Last edited by wyrdhamster; 04-22-2018, 01:58 AM.


                LGBT+ in CoD games
                Dark Eras fan stuff hub ( with Eras inside ):
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Wormwood View Post
                  Seconding Satchel here: being an Initiate says a lot more about the Character in question than just "Can lead a Rite". Just like a fighting style, Aif of Menace or Epic Iron Skin, it says something about the personality, goals, approaches to life etc. (Satchel put it way better than me.)
                  Okay, yeah, I can see this as being 'marked' by as character concept. It's only... ( see answers below )

                  Originally posted by Wormwood View Post
                  Plus unless all PCs are seriously invested, I don't see why they'd need more than one Initiate - 1) you need several Characters to participate anyway, so everyone being able to lead doesn't really give the PCs much, and remember, everyone should have a niche where they excell, and being the Initiate may well be one such niche,
                  Initiate have only limited number of Rites to learn - Intelligence + Lair, to be precise. And if I need more Rites in game - I think about incorporating more than half of them, on possible chronicle plots idea.

                  Thinking about it, maybe Obcasus Initiate could stay as Merit - only being someone special, as not 'that guy that knows Rites', only more 'that guy that is really super good with Rites'. I could see this easily. Probably not called Initiate then, rather Adept - but marking character as really specializing in Rites none the less.

                  Originally posted by Wormwood View Post
                  2) it robs you of that sweet sweet "Go Save Miraculix" plotline. Seriously, I am a proponent of there being few Initiates, as it indicates a devotion far above normal, and their 'power' certainly gives them a certain standing among their Family (think Witchdoctor). This makes them a juicy target and allows them to serve any role from Plot Device, Mentor, Call to Adventure all the way down to McGuffin.
                  Don't rob yourself of that, man.
                  It's great idea for the normal groups, for sure. But as I run lately games in RPG club, I found that high players rotation is Inevitable in this configurations. And losing player that is your only 'shaman' is real blow into face, if game is Rites heavy. I literally have this problem now in my run Werewolf game - we lost player that was Ithaeur, come to part in chronicle the we need some Rites for Uratha to perform - and it's a problem. Now players ask me to look for next players and ask them to choose any concept - but only if they are Ithaeur.

                  In BtP loosening rules with Rites is much simpler, as you only need one Merit to open them ( and story reasons ). I just want to cut the Merit cost, as probably most players need to be Initiates a lot.

                  So muse me and let's talk about this Hack to BtP assuming I need it from game-managing reasons.
                  Last edited by wyrdhamster; 04-22-2018, 11:06 AM.


                  LGBT+ in CoD games
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                    So you will not answer me. It's Hack concept
                    It's you making yet another thread asking for help untangling your decidedly nonstandard table structure from the complications it brings to running games that are written under the assumption that a troupe will build their stories with their own attendance schedules in mind.

                    You could save everyone a lot of trouble by just making one thread on the general Chronicles board to deal with this recurring issue instead of assuming every problem you encounter as a direct result of your trying to contort game concepts into things that they aren't warrants a separate topic.

                    As it stands, the way a character gets more room to learn additional Rites is to raise their Lair and/or Intelligence, either one of which is within the reach of a Beast character who regularly experiences Communion. This is a game whose narrative mechanics are built around fairly long arcs and your table is structured in such a way that it is antithetical to long arcs with the same characters. Waiving the entry requirements for the role of high priest in the cult of the Dark Mother isn't going to solve that in a meaningful way.


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                    Currently Consuming: Changeling: the Lost 1e

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                      As it stands, the way a character gets more room to learn additional Rites is to raise their Lair and/or Intelligence, either one of which is within the reach of a Beast character who regularly experiences Communion.
                      I do not see this from Communion - as Condition do not have Beats section to generate more XP for character to rise traits. Condition states only that character can learn next Rite - from my reading of BPG, hard limit of Int+Lair is still in place. That you need to rise from XP generated in other areas. It's only investment on shoulders of particular character.


                      Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                      Waiving the entry requirements for the role of high priest in the cult of the Dark Mother isn't going to solve that in a meaningful way.
                      You say 'role of high priest in the cult of Dark Mother', to me it's more 'inner magic of all Begotten'. Even by RAW every PC Beast can learn to use Obcasus Rite - it just needs story reasons ( connected by Conditions ) and one Merit.


                      LGBT+ in CoD games
                      Dark Eras fan stuff hub ( with Eras inside ):
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                      Conquest of Paradise – Portugal and Spain in 15th century and their conquests
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                        I do not see this from Communion - as Condition do not have Beats section to generate more XP for character to rise traits.
                        It doesn't matter, you get 1 Beat for Resolving a Condition, a Beat section is only necessary for gaining Beats without resolving it.

                        ...hard limit of Int+Lair is still in place.
                        Right, a limit of 21 Rites (Intelligence 11 with Epic Potential, Lair 10). There are currently 12 Rites. So a Rites oriented character can learn all the current Rites, and have room for nine custom ones... doesn't seem like a problem. If your concern is "half the Rites in the PG," then any starting character focusing on being an Initiate is going to be close to that number (Intelligence 4-5, Lair 1), esp. since focusing on Intelligence gets them both more Rites and likely a better Rites dice-pool (since it's your Horror's Power Attribute which is your highest of the standard ones)

                        That you need to rise from XP generated in other areas. It's only investment on shoulders of particular character.
                        Resolving Communion ten times pays for the Initiate Merit by itself, without getting XP from any other area. The only other place you need to be pulling XP towards is raising Lair... which was worth doing before the PG came out.

                        You say 'role of high priest in the cult of Dark Mother', to me it's more 'inner magic of all Begotten'.
                        Well... don't house rule it to be the inner magic of all Begotten then? They already have Atavisms, Nightmares, and a slew of innate powers without Rites. Accessing Rites specifically requires communion with the Dark Mother, making "high priest," the more accurate of the two. It's not that strong of an "inner" magic if you have to go through a spiritual quest to the Dark Mother to get it.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          It doesn't matter, you get 1 Beat for Resolving a Condition, a Beat section is only necessary for gaining Beats without resolving it.
                          (...)
                          Resolving Communion ten times pays for the Initiate Merit by itself, without getting XP from any other area. The only other place you need to be pulling XP towards is raising Lair... which was worth doing before the PG came out.
                          Okay, so for sleep after Communion character get's both new Rite and 1 Beat for resolution. Very positive stuff here. And yes, now I see it's a bit perpetum mobile with ST involved in granting Communion.

                          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          Right, a limit of 21 Rites (Intelligence 11 with Epic Potential, Lair 10).
                          I missed Epic Potential as not every one of players can take it. But thanks for pointing it out - in Beast Epic Potential can be taken often for players, so I will have this in my mind.

                          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          There are currently 12 Rites. So a Rites oriented character can learn all the current Rites, and have room for nine custom ones... doesn't seem like a problem. If your concern is "half the Rites in the PG," then any starting character focusing on being an Initiate is going to be close to that number (Intelligence 4-5, Lair 1), esp. since focusing on Intelligence gets them both more Rites and likely a better Rites dice-pool (since it's your Horror's Power Attribute which is your highest of the standard ones)
                          Okay, so the number of Rites limit is not a problem, really. Thanks for pointing out.

                          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          Well... don't house rule it to be the inner magic of all Begotten then? They already have Atavisms, Nightmares, and a slew of innate powers without Rites. Accessing Rites specifically requires communion with the Dark Mother, making "high priest," the more accurate of the two. It's not that strong of an "inner" magic if you have to go through a spiritual quest to the Dark Mother to get it.
                          Will see on the matter - Communion may refund you the cost of Obcasus Initiate - but by RAW you need Initiatie Merit in the first place to have Communion events. So it looks like this 'Oh, I got now 10 Communions by now - now I can finally make Rites for the Dark Mother'.

                          To be frank - I think about players doing first Rite even in first session. Making one of PCs after 2 or 3 scenes 'and now you need to pay my 2 XP for this Merit you need to progress story' - sounds a bit dick-ish on ST part, especially as they can have no XP to pay, yet.

                          I just see the Obcasus Initiate as needless 'XP moving', when I plan to make Communion large part even opening story.


                          LGBT+ in CoD games
                          Dark Eras fan stuff hub ( with Eras inside ):
                          Byzantine Empire in Middle Ages ( 330–1453 A.D.)
                          Conquest of Paradise – Portugal and Spain in 15th century and their conquests
                          My stuff for VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E & BtP

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post


                            Will see on the matter - Communion may refund you the cost of Obcasus Initiate - but by RAW you need Initiatie Merit in the first place to have Communion events. So it looks like this 'Oh, I got now 10 Communions by now - now I can finally make Rites for the Dark Mother'.

                            To be frank - I think about players doing first Rite even in first session. Making one of PCs after 2 or 3 scenes 'and now you need to pay my 2 XP for this Merit you need to progress story' - sounds a bit dick-ish on ST part, especially as they can have no XP to pay, yet.

                            I just see the Obcasus Initiate as needless 'XP moving', when I plan to make Communion large part even opening story.
                            Wrong, Wyrd - after ten Communions, the Merit has paid for itself, and from then on onwards, it is the gift that keeps on giving. Imagine you buy a car - that costs a lot of money. But this special car, it doesn't just drive you around, it produces gasoline, which you can sell. So after a certain amount of time (10 communions), you reach the break even point: all the money you invested in the car has been returned. From here on, it's like you got a free car that produces money. So yes, you need to invest 2 xp in it. In the long run, that's a pretty good investment.

                            So have a NPC ready that takes over that job. Make them buy it with their character creation merit points. Structure your story so that they are necessary for the Rite and take part, but don't lead it (why would they need to lead it?) Make it part of the story that they have to go and FIND someone who knows Rites, have them argue and haggle with him to help them out, then later have him explain the concept to them, and then, if they are interested, they may spend their accumulated xp on the Merit so they no longer need the NPC (hell, maybe he gets some comeuppance for his jerkassery? Or maybe it's a touching 'No, my protege, YOU are now the Leader!' scene. Get creative! Seriously, man, you see bugs, all I see are features.)


                            And if you thing Obcasus Initiate is needless, then just be done with it and simply ignore that it exists. No one's stopping you. Whatever works for your table. You do you. Just be aware that it changes quite a few things about the game. I have to say, however: This reminds me a lot about that other topic you had about how Siskur-Dah was a merit tax or something.

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                            • #15
                              I can just give players Obcasus Initiate on first Communion - as in XP debt - and let them pay it with the Communion Beats. But it still will work almost as giving it for free, they only be 10 Beats behind.


                              LGBT+ in CoD games
                              Dark Eras fan stuff hub ( with Eras inside ):
                              Byzantine Empire in Middle Ages ( 330–1453 A.D.)
                              Conquest of Paradise – Portugal and Spain in 15th century and their conquests
                              My stuff for VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E & BtP

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