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The devouring and beast origin stories

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  • The devouring and beast origin stories

    As I understand it the origin story of every beast is that they were dreaming and a horror ate their soul, but I was always disappointed that nothing lead up to it. It seems to be a chance occurence. Does the beast players guide have a better explaination that expands on beast origin stories?

  • #2
    The origin story of a Beast is that their dreams extended into the Primordial Dream and granted them insight into world around them on a semiregular basis, and eventually something seized upon that connection to make the inside of their personal soul its home in a way that may in turn supply that same sort of fearsome warning.

    There is very little about the transformation into any major type of supernatural being that doesn't have any lead-up — the Devouring is only differentiated from the Horror eating someone's dream form in the later outcome, and the latter is a process that is easier to arrive at with recurring nightmares. Even if there's not a conscious Begotten feeling out whether you'd suit their idea of what the Dream is for, you're going to have some prelude to the confrontation with your Horror.


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    Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Satchel View Post
      The origin story of a Beast is that their dreams extended into the Primordial Dream and granted them insight into world around them on a semiregular basis, and eventually something seized upon that connection to make the inside of their personal soul its home in a way that may in turn supply that same sort of fearsome warning.

      There is very little about the transformation into any major type of supernatural being that doesn't have any lead-up — the Devouring is only differentiated from the Horror eating someone's dream form in the later outcome, and the latter is a process that is easier to arrive at with recurring nightmares. Even if there's not a conscious Begotten feeling out whether you'd suit their idea of what the Dream is for, you're going to have some prelude to the confrontation with your Horror.
      So, nothing new about it in the players guide then?

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      • #4
        Originally posted by K9ine View Post

        So, nothing new about it in the players guide then?
        The literal first section of the first chapter — the chapter titled "Being a Beast" — talks about the Devouring and the stuff leading up to and following on from the event.


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        Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Satchel View Post
          The literal first section of the first chapter — the chapter titled "Being a Beast" — talks about the Devouring and the stuff leading up to and following on from the event.
          Oh, ok. Wanted to see if there was enough new origin/devouring stuff to justify buying.

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          • #6
            The PG definitely expands on this... but the idea that there's no lead up is directly contradicted in the Core book itself:

            Page 52, "A Beast is the first victim of her own nightmare. She is marked — even defined — by the dreams that haunted her entire life. Therein is the key to her true nature." Emphasis mine.

            The description of the origin of the Beast that leads up to the Devouring in the core book is literally the opposite of your first post. Most potential Beasts dream of what's to come for years before it finally leads to the Devouring, and it is never a chance thing.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
              The PG definitely expands on this... but the idea that there's no lead up is directly contradicted in the Core book itself:

              Page 52, "A Beast is the first victim of her own nightmare. She is marked — even defined — by the dreams that haunted her entire life. Therein is the key to her true nature." Emphasis mine.

              The description of the origin of the Beast that leads up to the Devouring in the core book is literally the opposite of your first post. Most potential Beasts dream of what's to come for years before it finally leads to the Devouring, and it is never a chance thing.
              I understand beast have dreams first, not really sure how to make an interesting multifaceted orgin story out of that. I would rather there be supernatural conditions under which these dreams are attracted, and a more comprehensive mythology on where horror come from.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by K9ine View Post
                I understand beast have dreams first, not really sure how to make an interesting multifaceted orgin story out of that.
                Why, do you prefer having extensive Session 0/Preludes for the players?

                Otherwise I'm not sure why any more elaboration is needed.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by tasti man LH View Post

                  Why, do you prefer having extensive Session 0/Preludes for the players?

                  Otherwise I'm not sure why any more elaboration is needed.
                  If I was playing a game where a beast is the antagonist I would want the players to investigate where the beast came from, what made them a beast, is there a weakness tied to their backstory, etc.
                  Last edited by K9ine; 09-10-2019, 03:41 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by K9ine View Post
                    I would rather there be supernatural conditions under which these dreams are attracted, and a more comprehensive mythology on where horror come from.
                    The place where Horrors come from is likewise covered in the PG, in its extended look at the Astral from a Begotten perspective.

                    They're Dreamtime fear-goetia transformed by their journey through the realm of legend and language. Parts of the world-soul may host the oldest children if the Dark Mother from which the Families derived. It's weird.


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                    Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by tasti man LH View Post

                      Why, do you prefer having extensive Session 0/Preludes for the players?

                      Otherwise I'm not sure why any more elaboration is needed.
                      Also beast seems like a make your own monster kit. I figured in the players guide they would have put in a lot of possible backstories so that you could have lots of different kinds of monsters, kind of like mages awaken in different ways.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                        The place where Horrors come from is likewise covered in the PG, in its extended look at the Astral from a Begotten perspective.

                        They're Dreamtime fear-goetia transformed by their journey through the realm of legend and language. Parts of the world-soul may host the oldest children if the Dark Mother from which the Families derived. It's weird.
                        Being a mage player I kind of like this, but I wish they had more possibilities. It seems weird that a Makara comes from a dream of a sea monster rather than being related to a real flesh and blood sea monster for instance.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by K9ine View Post

                          Also beast seems like a make your own monster kit. I figured in the players guide they would have put in a lot of possible backstories so that you could have lots of different kinds of monsters, kind of like mages awaken in different ways.
                          That's not really how Beast works.

                          There isn't anything hard-set in the setting or mechanics that really outline various ways a Beast is created. The most that's had is Begotten's retroactive different ideas of what the Devouring actually is, but it's presented as something no one knows for sure, and therefore players and STs can run with it as many ways as they like.

                          I'm not sure what else is there to tell aside from the different type of dreams a Beast-in-the-making could have in the lead-up to their Devouring.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by K9ine View Post
                            If I was playing a game where a beast is the antagonist I would want the players to investigate where the beast came from, what made them a beast, is there a weakness tied to their backstory, etc.
                            The weaknesses they have that are tied to their backstory instead of folkloric nonsense a Hero tacked onto them are consistent and threefold:

                            1. They're people. They have things they care about, and a lot of those things are more vulnerable than they are or otherwise exist in a state that they are invested in the preservation or advancement of. The Ugallu's hospital-bound brother can be harmed. The Tyrant's election campaign is subject to sabotage. The Captor's principle of letting people who escape her Lair live if they've learnt the right lesson can be exploited.
                            2. They need to feed and most of them will prefer to do so without stepping on the first weakness. Messing with their plans to do so will drain their resources and force them to compromise and possibly be more overt.
                            3. Their entire upkeep comes with a balancing act that alters their behavior and mobility. A Beast who can move rapidly between their various haunts is vulnerable to mental influence, a Beast who can act as a more personal threat has a harder time getting into their Lair outside of its exact Chambers, and a Beast who doesn't have any special challenges from their Hunger is vulnerable to Heroes laying Anathema.

                            Originally posted by K9ine View Post
                            Being a mage player I kind of like this, but I wish they had more possibilities. It seems weird that a Makara comes from a dream of a sea monster rather than being related to a real flesh and blood sea monster for instance.
                            The dream is a flesh and blood sea monster. It happens to inhabit a psychic dimension where nightmares life, but it's still a concrete monster that finds expression and sustenance through metaphorically-resonant acts.


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                            Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

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                            • #15
                              Oh also so there isn't any confusion:

                              The Beast and the Horror are considered two separate and distinctive entities.

                              While both depend on the mutual survival of the other they are still their own entity, with motivations and desires that aren't necessarily shared by the other.

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