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On the Problematic Nature of Beast (And Why I Think That's a Good Thing)

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  • Gellydog, all of the stuff on BtP being like horror movie - it's second thing that called me in this game ( beside centering on Otherness as concept ). Great sum up why we should play BtP in the first place!
    Last edited by wyrdhamster; 04-01-2019, 04:51 AM.


    My stuff for Scion 2E, CoD Contagion, Dark Eras, VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E & BtP
    LGBT+ in CoD games

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    • So not to bump threads out of nowhere, but this thread is happening...

      ...including a response from Rich on the claims made regarding Beast's troubled development.

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      • Not really all that new-Rose and Matt had said as much.


        Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
        The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
        Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.
        Currently Working On: The Noble and the Sovereign, Blog

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        • Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
          Not really all that new-Rose and Matt had said as much.
          ...not what I was referring to:

          The issues with Beast were not caused by an external rush to completion. Many of the assertions in those threads are erroneous, based on the ideas of folks that were not privy to what went on, or who have a long history of distorting situations in order to grind their mega-huge axes.

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          • Originally posted by tasti man LH View Post

            ...not what I was referring to:
            And to be clear, I’m less about saying that any given poster is a jerk, and more to note that anybody not directly involved is working from their own point of view, including misinformation and biases, regardless of whether they’re a player or a writer.

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            • Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
              Like, currently vs those earlier drafts?

              Ish?

              The big difference as that goes is that the earliest drafts got big into the unrepentant, fuck-you-I'm-me sort of attitude that Brookshaw mentioned that was, depending on the section you were in, justified or not, questioned or wholly accepted. Beast at this point owns it's Villain protagonist angle, but also is more interested in coherent questions on the board across and is more interested in allowing for anti-villains and those with buyer's regret, while also allowing for the fuck-it-all types-but asking a few more critical questions of the latter type, with the middle ground between the two being expected and part of the horror that it gets across.

              I think Beast currently sits on the "Let's be bad guys" side of the board, still more so than most of it's peers (Maybe not more so Mummy, Demon, Mage, or Vampire, but at least on the side versus the other half of the board, currently), and it may even be more honest about that fact- but I think every character is now at least having to ask some kind of question about the black hat* they chose to wear.

              *Er, association realized but not intended.

              How is Mage a Villain Protagonist?

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              • Originally posted by Konradleijon View Post
                How is Mage a Villain Protagonist?
                Become Wiser and the answer will reveal itself.

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                • Reading the First edition book they seemed to have been a “white mans Burden” thing Especially The Silver ladder .

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                  • Originally posted by Konradleijon View Post
                    How is Mage a Villain Protagonist?
                    Wisdom runs on the same "you mostly have this stat so that you can lose it" model as Humanity does in Vampire, except where Humanity charts your character's place in the long slide down alienation from the living, Wisdom charts how prone to collateral damage your character's existence as a magical actor is.

                    One of the ways it does this is to make it so that "stuff that feeds your magical fixations" as a category starts with things and people that are important to you and becomes more and more tenuously-related as your Wisdom falls, and the principal means of avoiding having this be a huge issue is by enforcing a strict divide between your mundane life and your Wizard Time.

                    Losing Wisdom puts you in a place where you're likely to lose more Wisdom, or at least make a pretty big mess of things, and you're more likely to lose Wisdom specifically in the process of engaging with your magical pursuits. In turn, you're more likely to lose Wisdom while engaging with your magical pursuits because magical pursuits and the act of doing magic are part of an addiction that the Awakened manage with varying degrees of success; being more magically powerful also lets you have more open tabs for your magical pursuits specifically, and also makes it so that when your spells risk collateral damage, that risk is larger.

                    You can make a limited number of spells completely incapable of imperiling your Wisdom, but the tradeoff of that is that spell becomes one that always risks collateral damage, and the main way to mitigate the risk of collateral damage from a spell is to use a bunch of the resource that that game gives you by engaging with your magical pursuits, tapping magical real estate, risking your Wisdom on living sacrifice, or getting lucky when you cast a spell.

                    Factor all of this into the fact that to get to the point where Wisdom is a thing your character has, they had to put more value on their curiosity and desire for power than anything else, and know also that the best training most mages can get comes from one or more global cults with some shall-we-say maladaptive views of what the power borne of High Magic is and is not meant for.

                    They're not very good people, generally speaking!


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

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                    • TL;DR, Mages are the metaphysical 1% and most of them behave exactly how you would expect someone with that designation to behave, and it does not hurt the incentives to do exactly that are strong and ever-present.


                      Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
                      The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
                      Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.
                      Currently Working On: The Noble and the Sovereign, Blog

                      Comment


                      • The only minority I'd compare Beasts to is my, those with a BDSM sadist/dominate sexuality. Any other just falls flat on it's face and is insulting. Beasts are inheriant sadists by nature, although some try and keep it within an ethical sadism. So I would not compare the GLBT+ community to them, or racial minorities, or racial majorities, or genders, sexes, ect..., because many will take that as insulting, but the BDSM community is unlikely to react the same way.

                        Beasts are just outcasts, some Beasts might be very popular and well loved for various reasons, no Beasts are sadists, dominate sadists.

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                        • Originally posted by Omegaphallic View Post
                          The only minority I'd compare Beasts to is my, those with a BDSM sadist/dominate sexuality. Any other just falls flat on it's face and is insulting.
                          No, you still manage to make the comparison to BDSM rather insulting.

                          The problem is that people seem to forget what a comparison is, not that comparing two things is inherently bad.

                          There's nothing wrong with comparing the emotional catharsis of a Beast undergoing the Devouring and finding a brood, and a trans person coming to terms with their personal gender identity and finding people that support who they really are. It's just a matter of being careful in your wording and stopping the comparison where it counts (that is, comparing a fantasy/fake thing to a real thing to try to give people context for what it feels like to undergo), and doesn't go beyond that, ("Beasts and trans people have this experience in common, thus Beasts are metaphors for trans people, and that's saying trans people are monsters").

                          Beasts are inheriant sadists by nature, although some try and keep it within an ethical sadism.
                          No. A sadist is doing something for pleasure. A Beast's nature is to do it for survival. A sadist that doesn't get to apply their urges might go emotionally unfulfilled, but can get on just fine. A Beast that doesn't feed their Hunger often enough literally dies (at least until they manage an Inheritance that meets their desire to no longer have to feed).

                          A(n ethical) sadist is also doing it for the mutual pleasure of all involved. A sadist's goal is to maximize their partners' and their own pleasure through the careful application of what they're doing. A Beast's Hunger is ultimately destructive and feed by making the situation as unpleasant as possible for their target; even if many Beasts will try to find a balance between not being too harsh as to cause excessive harm, and still doing enough to feed. That last part also doesn't really go along with inherently being sadists by nature.

                          ...but the BDSM community is unlikely to react the same way.
                          Probably best not to speak for a whole community like this? I'd imagine most of them would find that something the falls flat on its face and is insulting as well.

                          ...no Beasts are sadists, dominate sadists.
                          Only one Hunger actually cares about dominance in this fashion.

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                          • Speaking as a categorical sadist,

                            Phallic, shut up.


                            Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
                            The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
                            Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.
                            Currently Working On: The Noble and the Sovereign, Blog

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Omegaphallic View Post
                              The only minority I'd compare Beasts to is my, those with a BDSM sadist/dominate sexuality. Any other just falls flat on it's face and is insulting. Beasts are inheriant sadists by nature, although some try and keep it within an ethical sadism. So I would not compare the GLBT+ community to them, or racial minorities, or racial majorities, or genders, sexes, ect..., because many will take that as insulting, but the BDSM community is unlikely to react the same way.

                              Beasts are just outcasts, some Beasts might be very popular and well loved for various reasons, no Beasts are sadists, dominate sadists.

                              Nice job using a very inaccurate comparison to paint an entire category of people in the most negative light posible. Please don't do this again.

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                              • Dude, sadism has a huge media misrepresentation problem. Beast can be a great vehicle for exploring that identity, but to say it is unquestionably and unobjectionably a metaphor for BDSM is the opposite of helping.

                                Sadism in popular media is always a villain trait, and not a motive of the sympathetic villains either. At best sometimes you'll see a hero with a violent streak, and it's something they struggle to contain, overcome, and eventually rid themselves of.
                                Masochists, where they show up, are usually part of a Too Kinky For Torture joke, where the punchline is the bewildered and frustrated torturer. Because obviously those fictional sadists are in it for the distress and unhappiness of their victims.

                                You can play a Beast that challenges those stereotypes, absolutely, but experience inclines me to believe that a majority of people see Beast reinforcing them and that's part of why so many find it objectionable.

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