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  • Re: iron vs. carbon steel:

    Yes, chemically the two are just different ranges on the same spectrum. There are a LOT of very important reasons why people don't usually think of it that way, though, and those reasons (together with the "people not thinking of it that way" part itself) are what informs steel not being a bane to the fae.

    IMO the more interesting question is, is a hand-forged wrought iron sword still cold iron if the wrought iron ingot the smith started with was made from pig iron? The answer to that is actually quite important in the event that there's ever a Changeling Dark Era set in certain parts of Asia that adopted the blast furnace early; China actually started with it, in fact.

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    • Huntsman questions: Do Huntsmen just harvest glamour normally, or can they eat Goblin Fruits, reap glamour, or do other special stuff?

      And Also, do they all have the same array of Huntsmen Dread Powers?

      On a related note, does Hunter's Panoply do anything other than giving them signature weapons and tells?


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

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      • Originally posted by Satchel View Post

        "For all intents and purposes," yes, in a world where iron is common changelings are going to have trouble stretching their legs, but metal in general is a commodity and to my understanding most places in the fifth century weren't operating on a saturation level even approaching "utterly surrounded."
        Well by the late Roman period (3rd century) on virtually every tool had an iron component or version available, making copper and bronze optional and utilized only when cost, availability or fashion dictated them. Normally you'd find copper, bronze, and lead in alloys (e.g. pewter) for casting, while iron was refined to a usable form and hammered out into the desired implements--even iron-shod tools such as spades and hoes have been found, wool combs, and the like. Iron fittings for harness, clothing and other such were also common.

        Here's the thing though: production was never high and recycling of older/worn iron items was the norm as far as we can tell. Also, while earlier Roman military equipment was what we would call "cold iron" (even swords), later Roman and Anglo-Saxon weapons tended toward a core of iron surrounded by steel. I'll just assume here that armor likewise benefited from a shift/focus toward steel facing if not production solely of steel items.

        So.. from a setting standpoint, you're looking at a lot of "cold iron" items floating around--things that were crafted at the most basic, hand-driven model of iron production you can get shy of hammering off meteorite bits. BUT! As ST I would NOT call recycled iron items "cold iron" any longer. Nor would steel count as iron, since it's thought of differently by human perception.

        Cold Iron is:
        1. Meteoric pure iron worked without significant temperature.
        2. Bloomery-refined iron worked below melting point with hand-tools once only into a finished item.

        Iron is:
        3. Bloomery-refined iron scrap that has been reheated and re-combined to form a new item.

        Not Iron is:
        4. Iron alloyed to steel.
        5. Iron heated to its melting point, whether for casting or other circumstances.

        By the way, there is a Changeling DE in China of similar nature, so blast-furnace invention there is kinda important. That's Three Kingdoms of Darkness, and I didn't note any comments on iron use/proliferation in that DE.

        --Khanwulf

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        • Originally posted by Khanwulf View Post
          So.. from a setting standpoint, you're looking at a lot of "cold iron" items floating around--things that were crafted at the most basic, hand-driven model of iron production you can get shy of hammering off meteorite bits.
          Right. I'm saying that regardless of how prolific cold iron might have been in the realm of tools and weaponry, an iron cage or gate was a discrete inconvenience rather than the stuff of universal construction — this is one of many splats whose powers and thematics allow them to live in the woods on the edges of civilization in comparative comfort, and changelings in particular are very much oriented toward avoiding harm by not being there for the downswing of an irritable farmer's spade.

          "For all intents and purposes" a lot of the Lost have a decent reason not to live too deep in civilization if they intend to avail themselves of the advantages of their magic, which frankly sounds like it would track in a pre-industrial Dark Era that close to the fall of Rome.


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

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          • Originally posted by Satchel View Post
            Right. I'm saying that regardless of how prolific cold iron might have been in the realm of tools and weaponry, an iron cage or gate was a discrete inconvenience rather than the stuff of universal construction — this is one of many splats whose powers and thematics allow them to live in the woods on the edges of civilization in comparative comfort, and changelings in particular are very much oriented toward avoiding harm by not being there for the downswing of an irritable farmer's spade.

            "For all intents and purposes" a lot of the Lost have a decent reason not to live too deep in civilization if they intend to avail themselves of the advantages of their magic, which frankly sounds like it would track in a pre-industrial Dark Era that close to the fall of Rome.

            Again, right. You're looking at, as a Changeling, interacting with a world of civilization that takes on a distinctively hostile tone when you realize that every half-successful farmer with iron clothing loops is carrying at best easy kryptonite to your glamour-bourne magic and at worst weaponizable assets. There's a reason why the peasantfolk go first to touch an bit of iron whenever magic, curses, and the fae come up.

            And they come up quite a bit (Western Europe, again, here) in reference to the woods. Following the tropes, the uncivilized woods is where humans atavistically go to return to hunting, where they go to respectfully obtain the produce of the forest (wood included) and where the lords direct their iron axes to clear more land for cultivation. It's where storied characters find adventure, where wild beasts live, and where people regularly do not come back from.

            The Fae live there, along with under/within other natural places. Finding fae in your house means you need to immediately either 1. get a priest, 2. put out offerings/payment, 3. ward it with iron. Two of these three things are likely to work.

            Living as a Changeling in this iron-sprinkled world means being unable to trust the efficacy of your magic most the time, in trade for being surrounded by crap the Huntsmen won't like either and you know exactly how to use.

            --Khanwulf

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            • New question, separate post:

              [Older playtest doc, again.] There is some mention of "bargains" being used to shield Changelings from Huntsman detection, effectively integrating them into human society by giving them responsibilities so long as their human partner keeps their end of the agreement.

              Ok, this works great for spinning wool and cobbling shoes, etc.

              What about bargains that provide what would effectively be status (dots?) within human society? For example, legal adoption of the Changeling (or of the Changeling of a human child). Employment at a workplace? Or, bestowment of a title or office? Or degree? Marriage?

              Now the mentioned bargains are special because they require the Changeling to show their true form (scouring the Mask away, I assume, unless other merits permit dropping it more gently). You're not going to walk across the stage for your masters as a flaming-winged creature of shadow and light, so a few of these examples may be way out. What about others, where you can secure the "meat" of the bargain through a more private understanding between characters?

              --Khanwulf

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              • What about them? What differs about changelings making deals for jobs or offices compared to regular talented humans making those deals? Not every bargain is a Bargain.

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                • My reading of the Obliged condition (which is how the protection against Huntsmen is operationalized) is that a Bargain has to be a specific, discrete, repeated action on the Changeling's end. It's underpinned by the Wyrd's this-for-that nature, so both the Changeling and the human have to do a specific thing on a schedule for the Bargain to still be in force. Things like marriage, or getting a degree, are more like a change of state than a series of this-for-that exchanges. You could model those as an oath, but they wouldn't grant Obliged.

                  Certain jobs might take the form of a Bargain, but it would be less "Hire Johnny as your new IT guy" and more "If you leave an old laptop and an envelope full of cash on your windowsill, Johnny will sneak into you office at night and upgrade you to Windows 10." (Maybe that resembles your IT department, I don't know.)

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by Mad_Maudlin View Post
                    My reading of the Obliged condition (which is how the protection against Huntsmen is operationalized) is that a Bargain has to be a specific, discrete, repeated action on the Changeling's end. It's underpinned by the Wyrd's this-for-that nature, so both the Changeling and the human have to do a specific thing on a schedule for the Bargain to still be in force. Things like marriage, or getting a degree, are more like a change of state than a series of this-for-that exchanges. You could model those as an oath, but they wouldn't grant Obliged.

                    Certain jobs might take the form of a Bargain, but it would be less "Hire Johnny as your new IT guy" and more "If you leave an old laptop and an envelope full of cash on your windowsill, Johnny will sneak into you office at night and upgrade you to Windows 10." (Maybe that resembles your IT department, I don't know.)

                    First: LOL. Having very nearly been that IT department, nicely done. (Except: no cash involved.)

                    Ok, so I can see the difference. I think part of my confusion is thinking that a Bargain and the Obliged condition are in some way analogous to a Demon's Cover, essentially establishing an innocuous role for the Changeling in human society such that the Huntsman overlooks him.

                    On this topic I'm a bit surprised as well that the Bargain hinges on the Changeling revealing their true nature to the person with whom they are making the agreement. This, as I remember plenty of fairy tale stories had faeries who struck bargains with unsuspecting mortals--who later had the terms of their agreement brought up to their detriment. Further, Celtic mythology in particular is rife with tales of fae-wives who laid on conditions which when inevitably broken destroyed the family by revealing their nature/demanding their departure.

                    I had thought the Bargain mechanism was intended to model these sorts of stories, but may be mistaken.

                    --Khanwulf

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Khanwulf View Post



                      Ok, so I can see the difference. I think part of my confusion is thinking that a Bargain and the Obliged condition are in some way analogous to a Demon's Cover, essentially establishing an innocuous role for the Changeling in human society such that the Huntsman overlooks him.

                      On this topic I'm a bit surprised as well that the Bargain hinges on the Changeling revealing their true nature to the person with whom they are making the agreement. This, as I remember plenty of fairy tale stories had faeries who struck bargains with unsuspecting mortals--who later had the terms of their agreement brought up to their detriment. Further, Celtic mythology in particular is rife with tales of fae-wives who laid on conditions which when inevitably broken destroyed the family by revealing their nature/demanding their departure.

                      I had thought the Bargain mechanism was intended to model these sorts of stories, but may be mistaken.

                      --Khanwulf
                      I think that the Bargain is intended to hide a changeling in an innocuous fae role, rather than a human one. The Huntsman sees them and thinks, "Wait, that's not the changeling I'm looking for. Look at how he's cleaning that house in exchange for a bowl of milk left on a hollow log... That's nothing more than a common house brownie. Boy, would I have looked stupid coming back with that!"

                      That said, I agree that it seems odd that they must reveal their nature, especially when the Bargain is something where the changeling can fulfill their end in an entirely mundane manner. I suppose that the "deal with a secret faery" trope is intended to be covered by the Gentry themselves.


                      Jason Ross Inczauskis
                      Freelance Writer
                      Currently writing: Dark Eras 2, TC In Media Res
                      Previous projects: DtD Night Horrors: Enemy Action (Alban, Beelzebub, Oxblood Mold, Whispering Oak); C20 Anthology of Dreams ("No Such Thing As Dragons")

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                      • Can Huntsmen see past the Mask?


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

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                        • Originally posted by Master Aquatosic View Post
                          Can Huntsmen see past the Mask?
                          Rule of thumb is that if it has any amount of faerie magic, it can see through the Mask, from Gentry to Hobs to Fae Touched, and everything in between.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by White Oak Dragon View Post

                            I think that the Bargain is intended to hide a changeling in an innocuous fae role, rather than a human one. The Huntsman sees them and thinks, "Wait, that's not the changeling I'm looking for. Look at how he's cleaning that house in exchange for a bowl of milk left on a hollow log... That's nothing more than a common house brownie. Boy, would I have looked stupid coming back with that!"
                            Now I'd like to hear the whole story from the Huntsman's side!

                            8:01 am - arrive at work; park flaming horse. Queen of Air and Darkness yells at me for being late. Can't I just quit? Flipping burgers sounding pretty good! I like milk.
                            8:23 am - coffee machine is out of order. I kick it until it screams for mercy and spits grounds all over my best pants. Fine. Not like I have any meetings today.
                            8:45 am - all-hands meeting. "Go around the table and share..."
                            1:47 pm - lunch interrupted. Sandwich wasn't weeping much anyway. "Go to Toronto they say! It'll be fine they say!" Check weather. Snowing.
                            ...
                            9:33 pm - leave diner. Horse won't start. Stupid snow!

                            Originally posted by White Oak Dragon View Post
                            That said, I agree that it seems odd that they must reveal their nature, especially when the Bargain is something where the changeling can fulfill their end in an entirely mundane manner. I suppose that the "deal with a secret faery" trope is intended to be covered by the Gentry themselves.
                            I suppose the secret faerie trope could be easily satisfied by a Gentry, but pity the poor human who hid the shawl of the Queen of Air and Darkness for twenty years to make her keep house! He'd better never go into the woods again!

                            --Khanwulf

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by White Oak Dragon View Post
                              That said, I agree that it seems odd that they must reveal their nature
                              Here's the thing: They don't.

                              Specific wording of the section's opening line notwithstanding, the requirement is that the changeling appear to the mortal in question without their Mask and make an offer — they explicitly don't have to give any details about why they have burning hair or extra digits or cloven hooves, or even reveal their mundane identity.

                              What this produces is an identifiable narrative and role for a character who can otherwise have at least one entity sharing their Mask at any given time, as well as a relationship that can be entirely confined to "the woman with obsidian teeth and a nacreous throat helps me get rid of the dead bodies that keep turning up behind my butcher shop twice a week in exchange for her pick of the choice cuts."

                              I feel like it's notable that one of the main benefits of Obliged is shared with Goblin Queen, which itself shares Hedge Denizen's specification of "you look very different from how people might have otherwise known you, but you have a tell."


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

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                              • Regarding cold iron and using Contracts: if a changeling is in contact with cold iron does it impede their ability to use Contracts, even if the Contract isn't specifically targeting the iron?

                                For instance, if a changeling was imprisoned by cold iron chains and wanted to use Unravel the Tapestry to jump back in time to before he got the chains slapped on him and then try to stop that from happening on his second chance. Would the Contract still work as intended, or would it not on the basis of the changeling being in contact with cold iron while invoking the Contract?

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