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Gnawing on Gnats- Gripes and Counter Gripes

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  • #16
    ^that's a much better explanation.


    Kelly R.S. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
    The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
    Feminine pronouns, please.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by 21C Hermit View Post
      This is something interesting that I apparently failed to catch on but want to; could you elaborate, just a little bit?
      It definitely takes some reading between the lines and connecting dots that were probably never intended to be linked, but there are a few patterns related the Vancouver setting (a special case, yes, but one that sets a precedent) and some comments in the Player's Guide on the general attitude of the Leviathans (one particular standout is a note on the Family's reaction to Anakim with water-based Horrors, presented as a given and never really unpacked). It's small things scattered throughout, but my subconscious keeps picking over them.

      I think Satchel's interpretation of the Leviathans possessing intrinsically deadly Lairs combined with the kinds of monsters they tend to seek out for Kinship goes a good long way for explaining the attitude. Centipede infestations and endlessly looping corridors are useful defenses, but nothing beats the immediacy of a sudden lack of oxygen and the crushing pressure of the depths.

      (On a related note, I watched Lake Mungo for the first time yesterday, and was struck at how. . . Makara-themed the entire movie is, from the initial drowning death to the constantly nagging feeling of unspoken truths lying just below the surface that no one is particularly eager to dredge up. "She kept the fact that she kept secrets a secret.")

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      • #18
        It feels odd to me to treat "most lethal Lair," as "nothing beats," material... because it also closes off a lot of beneficial things you can do with your Lair if the vast majority of other supernaturals (even other Beasts) can't go into yours.

        I don't know really... it just seems to be too reliant on a "might makes right," sort of attitude for me that undermines that idea of "Makara supremacy." It just feels like so much of this is different if you perceive family as a greater power than lethality in this game, since that paints the Makara as more limited and isolated; and thus weaker in the end.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
          It feels odd to me to treat "most lethal Lair," as "nothing beats," material... because it also closes off a lot of beneficial things you can do with your Lair if the vast majority of other supernaturals (even other Beasts) can't go into yours.

          I don't know really... it just seems to be too reliant on a "might makes right," sort of attitude for me that undermines that idea of "Makara supremacy." It just feels like so much of this is different if you perceive family as a greater power than lethality in this game, since that paints the Makara as more limited and isolated; and thus weaker in the end.
          Doesn't really track to me.... Lair Traits only apply to people you want them to apply to. Invaders might need to deal with the suffocating depths of a Makara's Lair, but those the Makara invites won't need to worry about suffocating.

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          • #20
            Sorry if I was a bit clumsy there. I also meant to include things like exerting your Lair Traits into the physical world; which doesn't have the same protections for your allies.

            But I'm not sure how to better explain the idea that having the most lethal Lair isn't the same as having the best Lair; unless your criteria are only for using your Lair to kill.

            Even with dealing with intruders, if I want to do more than kill them, like let my kin-pack of Uratha go on a hunt after said intruders, it doesn't really work if the intruder dies in a few seconds from how lethal my Lair is.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
              But I'm not sure how to better explain the idea that having the most lethal Lair isn't the same as having the best Lair; unless your criteria are only for using your Lair to kill.

              Even with dealing with intruders, if I want to do more than kill them, like let my kin-pack of Uratha go on a hunt after said intruders, it doesn't really work if the intruder dies in a few seconds from how lethal my Lair is.
              A lethal Lair is a forbidding Lair. Hunger as a character axis wants the Begotten to kill things. On a Primordial level, if you can live in and control an area that kills most of the things that enter it, you are strong in a way that feeds certain forms of ego. Death and survival and the command thereof are symbolically potent motifs to partake of.

              Could a Beast have plans that entail a little more finesse? Sure! But the crocodile-brain that Horrors tap into, the power-tripping one-with-the-world-soul sensation hitched to their desires, says that it's awesome to be able to have a place of your own where you don't even have to lift a finger to stop people from following you.

              The Anakim and the Eshmaki and the Talassi want a place where they can make their approach, the Ugallu and the Namtaru and the Inguma want to see you off your game, but even without bringing lethality into the mix, the Lairs of the Makara still emphasize environmental mastery in a way that doesn't dance around the fact that the prey is in hostile territory.

              If this means collaborating with Kin often amounts to being the cliff they drive their prey off of? So be it. It's an important role.


              Resident Lore-Hound
              Currently Consuming: Demon: the Descent 1e

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              • #22
                While I like the conversation on it and Satchel's explanation in particular, I do want to interject and see if I can get an answer to an earlier question:

                Logic asides, is something like the Makara Pride actually something that people would rather see more of in the text* or is it something that people'd like to see throttled back instead?

                *And correspondingly, similar such with the other Families.


                Kelly R.S. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
                The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
                Feminine pronouns, please.

                Comment


                • #23
                  Something I found very good writing in CtL was the write up with each of the Seemings explaining why their Durances were the worst, while managing to make solid points and yet never really get to the point where any Seeming actually was worse off than the others. There's a strong resonance with the themes of how abuse impacts people and how they can fall into unhealthy coping mechanisms, and was a short way to help demonstrate the value of Seemings as a classification that draws characters of wildly different experiences into the same group that would feel natural in-character.

                  So something similar with the Families would appeal to me. The shape of it would depend on other factors. "Why our Family's Horrors teach the most important lessons..." sections of Family descriptions needs a more solid Lesson take to build on.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                    While I like the conversation on it and Satchel's explanation in particular, I do want to interject and see if I can get an answer to an earlier question:

                    Logic asides, is something like the Makara Pride actually something that people would rather see more of in the text* or is it something that people'd like to see throttled back instead?

                    *And correspondingly, similar such with the other Families.
                    With how it is now, throttled back. It doesn't feel like it does with the vampires (ventrue and daeva to an extent) or werewolf (rahu)

                    Like the text in those two are self aware and it's addressed, both in a way that shows why they see themselves as superior, and why they actually aren't. When reading beast, it seems you have the makara section have this superior thing going on, but with no sense of acknowledgement for the other Familes

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                      While I like the conversation on it and Satchel's explanation in particular, I do want to interject and see if I can get an answer to an earlier question:

                      Logic asides, is something like the Makara Pride actually something that people would rather see more of in the text* or is it something that people'd like to see throttled back instead?

                      *And correspondingly, similar such with the other Families.
                      On the one hand, Beasts are rare, Families are broad umbrellas, and "no neat little boxes" means "Anakim go like this" should be loose suggestions at their most insistent.

                      On the other hand, they have more mechanical impact than Incarnations in Demon, which dedicates a not-insubstantial number of words to the influence that X-splat has on a character's thought process, and after the Player's Guide we know the Families are, at least from the perspective of people engaging with the Dreamtime, more genuinely "families" than they are arbitrary thematic sorting bins.

                      I think I've painted a pretty clear picture of Makara Superiority Through Lair-As-Self-As-Instrument-Of-Necropower, but it'd be good to lean into the ego-stroking tendencies of the Families along their particular expressions of that old Mastigos saw of "they're scary because they're powerful and they're powerful because they're scary."

                      The ways they see themselves in the Dark Mother hint at some of this — "our Mother is the reason you never feel entirely alone in the Primordial Dream" is a strong brag for the Eshmaki from way early in the line, and it's not hard to link the Namtaru to the sort of hard-bitten "I am strong because there is nothing you can do to me to make my life worse" mood that's neighbors with how Fairest and Ogres approach delegation and fear — but it definitely couldn't hurt to give a little bit more to the Families as families with stories they tell about particular cousins and aunts and uncles as a loose form of institutional knowledge.


                      Resident Lore-Hound
                      Currently Consuming: Demon: the Descent 1e

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                        While I like the conversation on it and Satchel's explanation in particular, I do want to interject and see if I can get an answer to an earlier question:

                        Logic asides, is something like the Makara Pride actually something that people would rather see more of in the text* or is it something that people'd like to see throttled back instead?

                        *And correspondingly, similar such with the other Families.

                        I'd like to see more of it in text, but also with context provided, for each of the different Families. I'd also like a perspective that shows solemnity or responsibility for the role as well. Maybe a viewpoint of someone on a power trip and a viewpoint of someone that realizes there's a cost?

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