Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Huntsmen overkill? (2E)

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Huntsmen overkill? (2E)

    I'm reading the Huntsmen section of the 2E book again and something seems wrong with my understanding of the RAW.

    Let's assume there are 24 Changelings in a freehold. From that group, let's assume 20 are still hunted by the Gentry (e.g., they're not Loyalists).

    By the RAW, that freehold would be under constant siege by 20 Huntsmen.

    Imagine that. 20 relentless and unstoppable Huntsmen who revive every month if they're killed.

    I know we can handwave all this and do whatever we want, but did I miss something in the book? The idea of an undying stalker is certainly on point for the game but the fact that they reform after a month seems strange.

  • #2
    There is no reason to assume that every changeling's Keeper wants them in particular back badly enough to commit a Title to the effort of reclaiming them, much less all at the same time, much less that a bunch of independent shapeshifting hunters whose main tactics include inspiring paranoia will be particularly impatient in their approach to taking down superpowered fugitives.


    Resident Lore-Hound
    Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

    Comment


    • #3
      The way i have it is that the Keepers are unbound by geography.

      Huntsmen by contrast have a specific territory (i call hunting grounds).

      So what that means is that while the players are free to design their Keepers however they wish, i, as the ST, will build a number of Huntsmen operating in the city i feature the game in.


      Completed campaign: Scion 2nd Edition. Les Légendes Currently playing: Being a dad for a 3 year old daughter and a 2 years old son and now a beautiful new baby.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by tomewilson View Post
        I know we can handwave all this and do whatever we want, but did I miss something in the book?
        The book never prescribes any particular number of Huntsmen to Lost. They're not Fetches where most changelings have one until it's dealt with. They're primordial Arcadian entities that predate the Gentry.

        On top of what Satchel said, it's worth remembering that when the Gentry send the Huntsmen to the physical world, they're putting their control over that Huntsman at risk. Changelings can give Huntsmen their Hearts back, because the Gentry have to hide those Hearts in a Bastion for the hunt to come to Earth. That Huntsman might not be able to stop hunting this one particular prey (though now with a Heart they're a lot less scary), but once that Lost dies or is captured, the Gentry are out a loyal and irreplaceable servant with a big grudge.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Satchel View Post
          There is no reason to assume that every changeling's Keeper wants them in particular back badly enough to commit a Title to the effort of reclaiming them...
          If most of the gentry are blasé and/or nonchalant about you leaving, then ​why would motleys, freeholds, and courts be the default?

          I'm trying to establish the setting as intended by the game designers. Per the text, every Lost is a valuable resource that almost all keepers want to retrieve.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by tomewilson View Post
            If most of the gentry are blasé and/or nonchalant about you leaving, then ​why would motleys, freeholds, and courts be the default?
            Because even when the Gentry aren't directly antagonistic, they might very well spend their time procuring a Huntsman to send out, recruit Privateers, plan future attacks, etc. All of which requires a framework of support in the form of Motleys and Freeholds in order to reliably stave off.


            Bloodline: The Stygians
            Ordo Dracul Mysteries: Mystery of Smoke, Revised Mystery of Živa
            Mage The Awakening: Spell Quick Reference (single page and landscape for computer screens)

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by tomewilson View Post
              If most of the gentry are blasé and/or nonchalant about you leaving, then ​why would motleys, freeholds, and courts be the default?
              Most of the Gentry do not have infinite resources and equivalent care for all of their slaves at all times. It's one thing for your favorite bodyguard to escape during a rare moment of chaos when your holdings are still intact and a completely different thing for five preternaturally skilled scullery maids to make a break for it during a siegetime rupture.

              Also, there doesn't need to be any genuine threat of capture at all for changeling society to exist as it does — it's a bunch of traumatized people dealing with borderline unpredictable grabby gods that already stole them away from their lives when they were vulnerable once, and it doesn't need to happen more than once to make them terrified that it'll happen again.

              I'm trying to establish the setting as intended by the game designers. Per the text, every Lost is a valuable resource that almost all keepers want to retrieve.
              Per the text, the Gentry want the world and are not complete idiots in how they go about getting it. You don't send a queen to take a pawn, but if that pawn becomes a knight then it becomes a more valuable piece to capture. As in Demon, a character pursuing supernatural power is both better equipped to repel their hunters and more likely to come into conflict with them than one that simply lays low and feigns humanity — the Courts' paradoxical encouragement of its members toward higher Wyrd ratings gives them more resources to fight with and also makes them more attractive targets.

              The Wild Hunt is "The Gentry make moves to reclaim their runaway slaves," not "the Gentry commit at least a fifth of their personal resources to every escapee as soon as they're missed." The sovereign of a Court might have a Huntsman after them, as might the runaway prizefighter of an Arcadian colosseum, but if you were the groundskeeper of a Stranger's neglected estate then they're not necessarily going to prioritize your return over, say, winning a feud with their neighbors.


              Resident Lore-Hound
              Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

              Comment


              • #8
                In addition, there are more non-Keeper Gentry than there are Keepers. And this means that in all likelihood, there are numerous Gentry feuds and other politics that might distract a Keeper from wanting to send a Huntsman right now. Also consider that the desire to be a Keeper is tied only to a Title (or a Name), not to the whole being. This means that the Fae itself might be in conflict with itself over whether or not it wants a particular servant back. It is entirely possible that one of the Titles was responsible for releasing another Title's servants -- they're hardly a hive mind.


                When the cat's a Stray, the mice will pray...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                  Most of the Gentry do not have infinite resources and equivalent care for all of their slaves at all times. It's one thing for your favorite bodyguard to escape during a rare moment of chaos when your holdings are still intact and a completely different thing for five preternaturally skilled scullery maids to make a break for it during a siegetime rupture.
                  Are you pulling this from 1E or 2E?

                  I'm referring specifically to the 2E book that is supposed to be the self-contained starter for new players.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by tomewilson View Post
                    Are you pulling this from 1E or 2E?
                    Both. The way the Fae work in practical terms in 2e core is significantly reproduced from their material at the end of 1e, down to the Fae having zero to five interceding symbolic portfolios that make up their personal holdings along the spectrum from "cornered rat" to "god among gods." Power politics don't vary too much in the abstract.

                    I'm referring specifically to the 2E book that is supposed to be the self-contained starter for new players.
                    And you've been dreadfully nonspecific about where you got this reading that's got you so concerned.


                    Resident Lore-Hound
                    Currently Consuming: Hunter: the Vigil 1e

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm sorry for being "dreadfully" nonspecific. I didn't realize my question was suddenly a formal debate. Lighten up, Satchel. We're all friends here.

                      I'm basing my interpretation on the 2E text.

                      Page 57 - A True Fae will stop at nothing to retrieve a lost pledge, sending Huntsmen, loyalists, and even other True Fae after escaped Notaries.

                      Page 263 - Whatever desires you had before are muted — you now share the same desire for a changeling as the Keeper... Changelings run. They always run. And so, the Huntsman follows... One who does, and who clings stubbornly to defenses and a routine, finds the attempts to flush her out never cease. The heart that beats inside the Huntsman is that of her — their — Keeper... A Huntsman never ceases... their heart’s desire is to see a changeling in fetters, dragged through the Hedge and brought back to Arcadia... Even slaying the Huntsman will not end her suffering, for only a chill cavity rests between their ribs, and so long as their heart beats in their stolen Bastion, they reform somewhere in the Hedge within a month’s time to start again. And even when the heart itself is destroyed and the Huntsman is no more, the animating Title’s fire flits back to the Keeper whence it came, and can be sewn into a new Huntsman to start the cycle anew... In the colloquial among the Lost, the phrase “Wild Hunt” represents this dread reality: The hunt against them never ends, a furious host will chase them to the ends of the Earth, and a Huntsman may be coming for them at any time.

                      Page 264 - Only in the Hedge can a changeling sway the Huntsman from their mission, if temporarily.

                      Page 267 - At their core, the Fae are ravenous beings that must possess.

                      Page 268 - What the courts call the “Keeper” is just one Title’s manifestation, and even if a changeling kills it, the oaths it made would simply cast a new piece of itself in that role eventually and pick up the Wild Hunt where it left off.

                      Not to mention all the fluff between chapters about Changelings always being hunted and punished for not being paranoid.
                      Last edited by tomewilson; 08-12-2020, 11:26 AM. Reason: Formatting

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        One of the limitations I've put on my True Fae for my game is that Huntsmen can only be made up to how many Titles the True Fae has. The rulebook states that the True Fae only have between1 to 5 Titles (pg 269 in CTL 2e). Perhaps only one Huntsman can exist at a time or up to a certain amount. For instance if Grandmother Grandmother switched to the Red Princess Title maybe her Grandmother Grandmother Huntsman becomes inactive?

                        Additionally each Court puts limitations on how the Huntsmen can behave, though they have Loopholes (pg 264 in CTL 2e).

                        Read the give and take sections of each Court.
                        • Spring forces the Fae to be unable to attack a Freehold unless it is their Heart's Desire. As such a True Fae usually has to target the most beloved Changeling who left.
                        • Summer forces the Fae to be unable to retreat.
                        • Autumn forces the Fae to announce themselves before they attack. The wait time between the announcement and the attack is longer for more powerful beings.
                        • Winter forces the Fae to mourn those they kill. So you'll see a Fae being killing a Changeling and turn to face a second one, but they are forced to stop to mourn the person they just killed before they can kill again.
                        So you've got some interesting things that force the Huntsman to behave differently.

                        Also I'd handwave Huntsmen remembering things clearly when they are reborn. That way if the Changeling's kill a Huntsman they don't have to worry about him having a head start next month. The Huntsman may remember which 50 mile radius the Changeling was last scene, but it won't remember that the Changeling works at the Circle K store.
                        Last edited by DontEatRawHagis; 08-12-2020, 01:47 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by tomewilson View Post
                          A True Fae will stop at nothing to retrieve a lost pledge, sending Huntsmen, loyalists, and even other True Fae after escaped Notaries.
                          I think you're letting this color things more strongly than you should. This is a point about a specific Kith, because members of that Kith know things the True Fae do no want their enemies to learn due to their function. Notaries are more targeted than average because they can recite, perfectly, pledges their Keepers are bound by, and thus are invaluable for finding ways to use those against the Gentry.

                          The fact that one Kith is called out so strongly should probably be a key sign that most Lost don't endure that intense of a hunt from their Keeper; rather than take it as common place for all changelings to be that highly valued.

                          It also highlights that Keepers have lots of tools for hunting escapees.

                          Which gets to the key point here: the Gentry don't send a Huntsman after every Lost, and wouldn't even if they could. They save their most powerful servants for their most stubborn targets.

                          The fact that most Freeholds of 20+ Lost are only dealing with a rare Huntsman to push back repeatedly, doesn't mean they're not constantly in danger... because the Gentry still have lots of other nasty things to plague the changelings with.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Good point, Heavy Arms.

                            The interpretation I pulled was that changelings are HUNTED with a capital "H." They never get away clean. Something is always chasing them, whether it's a Huntsman, their keeper, their fetch, privateers hired by whomever, or pissed off goblins.

                            And while I love a good "oh shit, they're here" moment, having Terminator Voorhees knocking on your door every month seemed out of balance with the community-building aspect of the game.

                            Even if that level of notoriety is reserved for one type of changeling, it sends the message that those PCs are plague rats for freeholds and will never be able to settle in one place once they're discovered.
                            • Spring = I'm only here to yeet that guy.
                            • Summer = I won't stop until I yeet that guy.
                            • Autumn = Knock. Knock. Yeet!
                            • Winter = Yeet! Sorry about your friends. They seemed like nice people.
                            There is a mention that making pledges with people would make changelings much harder to find but it's just a line and doesn't have mechanics to support it.

                            Page 209 - Finally, the fae can make promises of service, favors, or magic to others. The benefit to doing so is concealment — a changeling performing services for others ingratiates herself to the Wyrd, thus hiding effectively from Huntsmen.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by tomewilson View Post
                              Page 209 - Finally, the fae can make promises of service, favors, or magic to others. The benefit to doing so is concealment — a changeling performing services for others ingratiates herself to the Wyrd, thus hiding effectively from Huntsmen.
                              I'm still getting my head wrapped around the Wyrd, but from what I've seen the book puts a lot on the shoulders of the Storyteller in regards to the karmic justice the Wyrd brings.

                              So a Storyteller should mention to players that a mechanic they are going to roll with is that making Pledges with Mortals keeps the Huntsman off their scent.

                              I really want more mechanics in regards to how Huntsmen can be tricked or forget where a Changeling is. I want this mainly because the way True Faa are written makes Changelings seem like they put themselves at risk if they congregate together for too long.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X