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Why Are Slasher So Popular and why are they returning in Second edition?

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  • #31
    I've never played Hunter so I can only speculate, but here's my two cents worth.
    I was under the impression that the importance of Slashers in Hunter is that they represented what could happen if the main splat went too far and lost their tenuous grip on humanity. Vampires become Daugr, Werewolves become Bale Hounds and Mages the Mad. Hunters became Slashers, losing sight of who they are hunting and why.

    In real life Serial Killers are people driven by an overwhelming desire/need to kill who pick their victims because some perceived trait or action makes then abhorrent to them, enticing to them or just because they saw an opportunity and couldn't resist it.

    In Slasher films, and many other horror films, it's all about the dangers of trespassing where you shouldn't, be it a location or by engaging in forbidden activities. Don't leave the safety of the city and civilization for the backwoods, don't go into the house at the end of the street, stay away from neighborhoods where you don't belong, don't leave the safety of the light for the mysterious dark.

    As for the prevalence in Slasher films for targeting teens having sex, that isn't because the movie's makers are champions of morality or trying to warn kids to be good, it's just a good excuse to put a little TnA in the movie to boost ticket sales.


    • #32
      Originally posted by 2ptTakrill View Post
      IWerewolves become Bale Hounds
      Zi'ir. Bale Hounds are a different direction.

      Hunters are basically slashers as it is. They just have a focused prey and mindset that lets them keep from thinking of themselves as murderers. Once you start varying from that mindset, or changing it too much, then you're a slasher. They're popular because they're a real and sensationalized though grim part of humanity, and relevant to hunter because the other direction is 'shellshocked person who does nothing' which isn't incredibly impactful from a storytelling perspective.
      Last edited by nofather; 04-23-2019, 06:02 PM.


      • #33
        well speaking of Slashers, the movie The Visitor seems to have an antagonist who is perfect inspiration for a psycho or at least charmer on the edge of scourgedom. in relation, slasher movies inspired the slasher of hunter: the vigil. while slasher movies may have whatever problems you perceive, slasher of hunter have their own lore and come to their state from a vast number of origins. the book itself does state mental illness as a possibility, but makes sure to state that this way is to be handled with care


        • #34
          Originally posted by 2ptTakrill View Post
          As for the prevalence in Slasher films for targeting teens having sex, that isn't because the movie's makers are champions of morality or trying to warn kids to be good, it's just a good excuse to put a little TnA in the movie to boost ticket sales.
          That's not quite the criticism. It's that there's specifically a tendency to associate it with the characters who end up dead. There's a question of how common that actually is, but it's certainly a trope of the genre. The intent is actually kinda secondary at this point.

          That said, transparent as it is, making your piece of art a nominal morality play is a super common tactic to avoid censors. Also perhaps more importantly for us, it gives your audience a degree of plausible deniability.


          • #35
            I'd also point out that one of the issues with giving too much weight to "genre tropes" is that it creates a concept of "essential" elements to something being part of a genre. Genre tropes aren't that. They're noticing trends and using them to help categorize, because human brains love to do that.

            The more notable a piece of work is within the genre, the less likely it actually represents the genre tropes all that well. One of the things that makes for forgettable and uninfluential entries is that they focus on following the "formula" for the genre to pump out something quick, easy, and cheap that people will go and watch because it's familiar.

            For example, the Friday the 13th series' point is that Pamela (and then Jason for it) are bad because they go too far in their moralizing. Pamela has every freaking right to be angry as hell that a bunch of teenagers were so focused on sex, drugs, and rock & roll that they let her kid drown. What makes her such a hypocrite, is that she doesn't even wait for teens to do anything bad... she just starts killing them. The whole "virginal" aspect of the Final Girl is absent from most of the series; as plenty of characters that should be 'safe' under this Trope die anyway.

            Halloween is far more responsible for this Trope due to Michael Myers lacking any real motivations for his killings. Without any ascribed motives, the fact that he kills either people directly in his way, or teens that are drinking and/or having sex, draws more attention to the metanarrative of teens dying for their vices.

            When you put these things in the "genre blender" you lose sight of how disparate the application of genre tropes can really be.


            • #36
              For one I think Slashers are kinda of a monster that aren't very common in World of Darkness (and CoD for that matter), and maybe for good reason until the Slashers supplement came along.
              Not only it has all that "they are reflexes of Hunter", "a vision of the possible end of a hunter if he/she strays from the path", but they are enemies with power that match but do not far surpass the Hunters, which make them ideal enemies in power and threat. They are also a bit more limited in effect, but tricky all the same, they give a less mystical vibe, but a way more visceral one than many other monsters of CoD. Also, you don't get bitten and drained or shredded instantly by Slashers, they do bad things and can kill nastily, which for me gives them a more intimidating image than vampires or werewolves. The way that they are twisted humanity incarnate, but in human appearance, will always be a plus for me.
              Also, they are more street and alley level of play, not catching attention of the big conspiracies or most compacts. A level that sometimes lack in Hunter games, especially because many other supernaturals feel like they make part of something bigger, and so they are a bit more unbeatable (lorewise), and Slashers usually act more by themselves. But a trio or family of Slashers is a darn good bloody clown fun. They might just be a millionaire's evil pet, that he leaves chained in his estate, and leaves victims for. Slashers are usually very versatile and play a lot of themes.
              I like'em a lot, and Hunters was the perfect game for them.

              Strange... When coincidence seems too convenient, I prefer to call it fate.

              -Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain d=


              • #37
                There's also how 2E Hunter does focus on the fact that Slashers are serial killers... and that means on some level, they're pathetic, broken people. Frequently, there's a level of sympathy in how they got that way, and the horror that deep down, every hunter has the willingness and ability to kill - who's to say that, if they break, it won't become an addiction?


                • #38
                  I'm not a huge fan of Slasher movies, but as a trope of the horror genre, they deserve their place in the World of Darkness.

                  I've always wondered why Slashers are associated with the Hunter game line so much, and this thread has provided a lot of answers to that. I understand now how they are well suited to be antagonists for Hunters.

                  Nevertheless, I think they could be presented as example antagonists in the Core rulebook, along with Ghosts, the God-Machine and Make-your-own-Horror.
                  "Chased by the Slasher" is a classic trope and can make a good simple story for new players to CofD, in the same way as the "Haunted Mansion" or "God-Machine weirdness".

                  Just like ghosts, Slashers are not really tied to any specific game lore and can be a threat common to all splats. In my experience there's often a metagame preconception, when players get too involved in supernatural lore, and "forget" that more mundane stuff exists too (Who's behind those gruesome murders? Is it a Pure? Is it a Spirit Ridden? Nope, it's "only" a regular serial killer).

                  And just like ghosts are introduced in the core rulebook but play a more important role in Geist, or like angels and the GM are more important in Demon, in the same way I think Slashers could be introduced in the CofD book and described more in detail in the Hunters book.


                  • #39
                    You don't need extra Slasher rules in the core book to run a slasher-genre antagonist. The Horror rules are plenty if you want to give them a supernatural edge that's not already present in the Merits. Adding them to CofD core on top of all the existing material would be trying to squeeze even more into an already very full space.


                    • #40
                      One the sample horrors is already a killer clown, in fact.