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  • Navio de Tolos [Beast Hunters]

    Navio de Tolos

    The Void Seekers

    [a flag upon it there a compass which points to the south in the middle of a string wheel, which is held by three donkeys]

    People dream about many things. Some dream about wealth. Others about powers. Some seek after love or peace, about ruin or silence. Yet, those small dreams are dwarfed in front of the dreams humanity has as whole- dreams about immortality, about victory, about defeating the impossible. Humanity have nightmares too- nightmares about being small and insignificant, nightmares about being exposed to danger, nightmares about the monsters who hide and the darkness and reach out with their twisting tentacles to grasp you and drown you in the depths of the abyss. But above all of those dreams and nightmares, above those fears and hopes, stands one primordial will- the force which driven mankind to go out of the cave and bring light into the darkness, taking the wilderness from the nightmares and make them its own. That will to discover new things and the curiosity to change the world comes from a single source, one which is, in many ways, the very essence of mankind- the search for the Unknown.

    The members of the Navio de Tolos understand that will better than the most. Each and every member of the group remember that since she was young, she searched after some escape from her ordinary life- she dreamed about impossible lands, talked with invisible friends and learned things that no teacher in school could teach her. That is, until one day, she grew up, and had to leave behind those "childish dreams". However, somewhere in her heart, she never truly gave up- she always hoped that one day, she could return to her dreams. One day, someone approaches her. He promise he can make her dreams into reality- if she would leave everything behind. People must be free, he says, and she agrees. She join him, and since then they both roam the sea of dreams, sailing together toward the Void.

    The Navio has first came to existence during the 15th Century. Originally a crew of a small ship, their captain was Alberto Lisboa- a minor nobleman who, inspired by Henry the Navigator, searched to make a name for himself and his ship, the Sea Singer, by discovering new nations and riches who were never known before. He studied the seas and currents for long time before going to his first journey. With his goal to reach Africa, he gathered his crew, set his sales and left to the sea.

    He never expected what eventually happened.


    One night, a great storm has started brewing out of nowhere. The waves were high and the winds were strong, and it was only because of Alberto's great courage that the crew functioned under the stress. Just before they were sure that they were doomed, the Navigator noticed an island in the middle of the storm. Seeing it as both a chance to find a shelter from the storm and a way for him to make a name for himself, Alberto ordered the crew to sail toward the island and pass there the night. Once they reached the shore, the storm was gone- but a terrible figure showed itself before them. A giant, his eyes burn with anger.. and hunger.

    Most of the crew was too exhausted to escape, and the giant quickly captured them and took them to his cave- except of Alberto. The captain, determined to free his crew, followed the giant to his cave, and saw him as he started boiling a great pot of water. Unwilling to let his crew become food, Alberto step forward and called the giant for dual. The giant, seeing how small was the person who challenged him, laughed at Alberto- but agreed. He moved forward, willing to smash the little insect- yet he didn't knew that Alberto has already tricked him, tying a rope in front of his legs beforehand. The giant, who was too big to notice the rope, got tangled with it and fall- directly toward the boiling pot. Using the chance, Alberto drew his sword and drove it into the giant's skull through his eye, killing him at once.

    Once the act was done, the earth has started to tremble, and fire has started to spread. Acting quickly, Alberto has gathered his crew and together they fled the island, returning back to Portugal as soon as they could. When they came back, Alberto has quickly spread the story about the giant and the island, and while some believed him many thought he was just a lair. In an attempt to proof his words, he sought after the island again- yet no matter how many times he searched, it was no where to be found. The island has vanished, never to be seen again.

    As a result of the event, Alberto's name was disgraced, and many has mocked him by saying the he was leading a "ship of fools". Yet, Alberto wasn't angered. Instead, he went along with the currents, and changed the name of his ship into Navio de Tolos. Afterward, he gathered his crew again, determined to find new places and similar legendary beings- now less for personal glory and more in order to discover how wide was the world he traveled in. During those journeys he did many things which he considered to be impossible- he talked with mermaids, he escaped krakens, he tricked dragons and charmed serpents. Through those travels he learned that he should not kill those monsters, for if he would the magnificent land in which they lived would vanish- yet some of those beings were cruel, kidnapping people to satisfy their strange hungers. He freed those people he found and stole the strange treasures those monsters has gathered, until eventually his single ship has turned into a small navy- all dedicated to discover the mysteries of the world and defeat their nightmares.

    No one knows what happened to Alberto eventually. The last record of him was when he left all alone, with a small boat and sailed toward the sea, seeking after the "Great Void". Yet his journal has survived, including the detailed maps which showed the hidden pathways of the world. For many years, the group has survived as a fleet- rising to greatness during the Golden Age of Piracy- but eventually it looked like it fell from grace. World explorers has died out, the world was mapped and it looked like there was no more mysteries to discover.

    That is, until the true secret of Alberto's journey was revealed.

    The one to discover it was King Captain Maria de Santigo. She discovered that below the map was actually a puzzle- and by solving it, she saw the true map, one which allowed her to open the Void and sneak into places which were long lost- the Fountain of Youth, Davy Jone's Locker, Atlantis. Those places were protected by ancient monsters, ones which have made the beings they met in their travels look like vermin, but they also promised great power to those who dared to get into them. What's more, some of those place could be traveled from many places, and not such through the sea. The world wasn't flat or round- it was like a layers of a labyrinth, and under her guidance the Void Seekers has returned to their endless travels through the world.

    Since then, the conspiracy has became an elusive yet powerful organization. Their knowledge of Alberto's map became much greater, especially it looked like every person solved the puzzle differently, discovering new lands and mysteries. Some of them came to the conclusion that the Map actually mirror's the person's soul, and that the lands they discover are actually the dreams of the reader who came into life. Whether it is true or not it unknown, but the archives of the Navio are filled with thousands of hidden paths and they pay a lot for those who manage to go through those journeys and rediscover ancient lands once again. Their leader is still named as a King Captain, even though many of the members never went on a ship outside their dreams, and she served until she either die or quite- following Alberto's example and leaving into the endless Void.

    The Unknown is waiting for you.

    Go find it!

    Status
    0- you have just move from a minor swab and have been recognized as a worthy mariner. You have managed to solve Alberto's Map and discovered one of the world's many hidden ways. You can spend Merit Points on the Caminhos Endowment
    000- you are an important member of the crew and are respected by your superiors. You gain access to the wealth the Conspiracy get from the hidden lairs of monsters they rob. You get Resources of 3 for free.
    00000- you have learned to feel to currents and the winds, and can now recognize which people hide Beasts inside of them- and by doing so, whole worlds in their souls. You are extremely respected, gaining the rank of Captain together with a crew and a dream ship of your own. You gain Unseen Senses (Primordial Dream) and can spend Merit points on the Sonhar Navio Endowment.

    Endowment- Caminhos
    that Endowment represent the sailor's understanding of Alberto's Map. Each such Caminho (or "Pathway") is a 1-5 dots Endowment which allows you to open a Pathway into a certain Lair like environment for you and your crew (with "crew" being anyone the Captain of the ship recognize as one). Those "Lairs" are guarded by ancient monsters and traps, and each protects a certain place which can grant special powers to those who come in contact with it. By going through the Lair, the sailor and any member of the crew who gets in contact with the treasure may get a special Dread Power. You can not have more Dread Powers then twice your Status, although you can replace existing powers. The more powerful the power is, the more guarded is the Lair and more dangerous are the monsters in it. You can not lose Dread Powers as a result of dropping in Status. Opening Camhinos is the same as opening a Primordial Pathway for Beasts.

    Endowment- Sonhar Navio (0-00000)
    that Endowment is opened only for those who has became Captains (although that once getting to that Status you can't lose the Endowment and may keep being dots in it normally). Those people learn the greatest secrets of the conspiracy- the ability to form a Dream Ship of their own, which functions as an independent Lair. Those who develop that trait are now considered as Kin to Beasts, and use their dots in the Endowment as a supernatural resistance trait. They may also gather a crew, which includes 2 people per Status points. The Captain and his crew may enter the ship by opening a Path to the Void, and they all manifest upon the ship, which can than use in order to roam the Primordial Dream in search after Lairs. While traditional members usually use ships, modern members have also manifested planes, buses and even tanks. The Navio has a special Lair Trait attached to it per dot in the Endowment, to which the Captain and the crew are immune. Destroying the Navio is the same as destroying a Beast's Chamber, and ruining the ship would require going through an immediate Resolve+Stamina roll, where Failure means losing all dots but one in the Endowment and being ejected back to the real world together with the crew plus Suffering one level of Lethal damage per success of the enemy, Success means avoiding the damage and Dramatic Failure means that half of the damage is now Aggravated. The captain always goes down with the ship, after all.
    Last edited by LostLight; 06-28-2015, 02:33 PM.


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  • #2
    Stereotypes:
    Aegis Kai Doru- they tell stories about ancient monsters sleeping inside of great labyrinths while protecting strange treasures from ages past. We can lead them to those labyrinth- if they'll pay us enough
    Null Mysteriis- Bo-ring! you want to discover the mysteries of the world? You should go out, cross the land and skies and touch the light of the stars themselves! You won't discover anything stuck in you stinky little laboratory.
    Knights of St George- Once, while sailing through the Void, I've stumbled upon a black river. I could have heard whispers come from it, and there was.. something.. below the water. I've tracked it down to it's source, and it was the dream of one of those guys. It looked like a Lair, but it wasn't guarded by a monster. It was guarded by an angel- a faceless one. I'm not scared easily, but I've gave the order and ran the hell out of there. Believe me, you would have done the same.
    Bear Lodge- oh, those guys LOVE their prey big and fluffy. While they prefer going on solid land, they sometimes join our ships when either we need their help bringing down a large guardian or when they seek after a prey who escaped to the Void. They are fun to get around, but they don't like sailing on our ships for too long. Oh well, no one is perfect.

    "It's a brave new world out there- and it is waiting just for us!"


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    • #3
      This group is epic (and forthwith stolen for a Nephilim/Mummy/GURPSCabal setting I occasionally work on).

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      • #4
        thank you so much! Feel free to use it and tell me how it went


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        • #5
          I love these guys. As bonus points you did get your portuguese right, yay!


          I'm So Meta Even This Acronym

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          • #6
            that's a relief! I mean, I tried my best at making sure I used it right, but I wasn't sure- I don't speak Portuguese after all. Now I feel better :P


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            • #7
              Stories of Fools and Heroes
              As general rule the Navio don't get along with Heroes. From the mariner's point of view, Heroes are self absorbed, obsessed individuals who go out and murder great wonders just in the name of their own glory. Yet, some of those who read Alberto's journal wonder if, by any chance, the founder of the great organization was by himself one of those despised individuals. those who rise that claim point that like Heroes, Alberto moved from place to place in search for monsters, and no one argues he killed some of those Beasts. They also refer to his obsession toward the void, and that he left all of his former life behind to chase those legendary beings.

              While there was a resemblance between Alberto's behavior as detailed in the journal to how Heroes act, there is one key difference- Alberto didn't went to the journey for his own glory. He also killed very few of the monsters he met, something quit unusual for an Hero. Also, his end was different from how Heroes usually ends up- instead of dying by the hands of a great Beast, he left to the Void, never to be heard again. That behavior also seem to effect anyone who has risen to the rank of a Captain and above. Captains tell about a strange compulsion they have to enter deeper and deeper into the Void, seeking for legends known to no man and leave their all life behind. That effect becomes even stronger once you become King Captain- Maria de Santigo lasted for 10 years before finally gave up and left to the Void, and no one has lasted more than her. Plus, everyone know that Captain are no longer human beings- with their own dream ship who functions as a Lair and their ability to make ties with a crew like a Beast's Kinship, they seem more like the Begotten than men.

              That made some people to think- if Beasts are the classical monsters of legend, and Heroes fill the role of the slayer of monsters, maybe the reason for the strange compulsion (or Hunger?) and Beast like abilities comes from the fact that like the two, they also resonant with some ancient aspect of the legends. Those captains who have bounded with Beasts (they are Kin, after all) say that the Children of the Dark Mother claim that they were meant to teach humanity a lesson through their fears, and that the Heroes were the ones to spread those lessons through the world. Yet, they corrupted their rule, turning the story about them and immortalizing their name as Heroes.

              Those who agree with those claims say that Alberto was very close on becoming an Hero- after all, he left his homeland in search after self glory and was absorbed into a Beast's Lair, where he slayed the giant. By all chances he was meant to become an Hero- only that he didn't. Instead of seeking the Void for glory, he searched it for adventure. By meeting the giant, he wasn't bound by his fears, but freed himself from them. He turned fear into hope, and drank it like fine wine. Instead of being scared of monsters, he fell in love with them- and there is only one way to describe such people- Fools.

              For that reason, those mariners who search after a "role in the story" claim to represent the Fool- they are Sinbad and Alibaba, Anansi and John the Conquer. They are tricksters, nomads and storytellers, usually not fighting the monsters directly and outsmart them instead of killing them. They are there for the story to move forward, to bring chaos to the plot and move things up a bit- and most importantly, to experience. They are the line which connects thousands of different stories, and instead of thinking what others would say about them they just do. They enter into the darkest cave and go out not just alive- but with a smile on their face.

              Knowing that Heroes were not the original intention of the lessons of the Beasts, the mariners wonder if the Fool was what meant to be, or is it just another twist humanity brought to the story. What ever the truth may be, that theory is meant to remind the Fools that sometimes, they need their Heroes. After all, Little Red Riding Hood was a Fool too.


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              • #8
                Most excellent work, LostLight. You get a Like. Congrats on your correct Portuguese, as well. I admire how you acknowledged that there is more to the Primordial Dream's monomyth than Beast and Hero. It makes me wonder what other archetypes might be homebrewed for Beast chronicles. I also have a very strong feeling that this was inspired by Os Lusíadas. Am I right?


                Let Him Speak.

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                • #9
                  glad you liked it, and actually I've never heard about the Os Lusiadas- although the resembles between the poem and the group probably comes from the fact that the two have the same source (that is, Portugal in the Age of Discovery). Thanks for pointing it out, and I think the poem is a great inspiration for a chronicle involving the group.

                  About other Archetypes- Kings Raven has made a group of hunters based around the Old Wise Man called the Llannerch Athrawon. Personally, I think that the ideas of Jung is a good place to think about new Archetypes, and so does Tarot Cards or even the 3e D&D model for the Dragonlance Chronicles. Sure, you should be careful and refine those ideas because there is an overlap, but it is a good place for homebrew Archetypes you could use in order to "spice thing up" for your Beast.


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                  • #10
                    As a Portuguese, I approve of this Hunter group. They're a weird bunch, but I appreciate this kind of mystical, elusive origin and these phenomena that don't precisely fit anywhere in the World Of Darkness.

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                    • #11
                      I like group write-up, will surely spice things up for Beasts. Here are mine questions to this:

                      1. Navio de Tolos explore whole Astral Space, beside the Primodrial Dream? "Seeking the Void" implies looking for Ocean Ouroborus...
                      2. Have the Conspiracy chapter houses in other countries? What would the look like? Will they be in Portuguese embassies? Or maybe in rather "port taverns", where sailors gather and made stories? What would like the group in England, for example?
                      3. Navio are Portuguese at their core. But the Golden Age of Piracy marked few other Sea Powers - England, Dutch, Spain to point the most core. Would Navio spread in them, or just similar groups would flourish ( and probably die after the while) ?
                      4. Nowadays Navio are more like masonic lodge telling stories about dream-journeys they had, or still about sailors or pilots in their own gathering places? How group works in modern times? Does it infiltrate cretin society groups? How the new members are brought to it?
                      5. What factions you would see for it? What role - beside the Captain at enough Status level - members can work as? How it is reflected in their everyday life?
                      Last edited by wyrdhamster; 08-14-2015, 01:16 AM.


                      My stuff for Scion 2E, CoD Contagion, Dark Eras, VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E & BtP
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                      • #12
                        1) open question :P
                        2) their HQ is in Portugal. They are travelers at their core, so other than that single "home port" they don't have any official locations where they gather- but I assume they have something like "port taverns" where they can meet up and talk.
                        3) the Navio has spread through the sea while exploring the whole world. If someone wanted to join them, they didn't asked many questions, being very open minded for their time (allowing even women to become Captains, for example). They didn't however, invested their time in aggressive recruitment or absorbing rival organizations- it is just not their thing. It is highly likely that other sea faring groups has existed and may even exist (I am personally going to work on one)
                        4) they still have ships and planes and vehicles, but not as much as they once did. Regulations makes it harder to make a real fleet, or roam through the world in large groups. They travel mostly in the Void, but in order to do so they also need to travel the real world so they could find the right places to open Caminhos. Infiltrating is not something they really do- instead, they seek after people who feel "stuck" in their life, who wish to escape from the everyday life and search for adventure, magic and hope. There are many people who just want to throw everything away and see the world- and those "fools" make the Navio.
                        5) I have no clue, actually. Never gave it much thought. Freedom is a big thing inside for the Navio, so being organized into small groups feel a bit artificial. I think that every Captain has his own agenda, and his crew follows that agenda. In sort, there are as many factions as there are Captains- with only the King Captain to remind them they have their own obligations.


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                        • #13
                          Thanks for answers, they clarify a lot. What I my add, the section on example modern Hunters of group and Enemy section (Do not know if they count monsters as such?) would made final cut for the group. All in all - great idea, fun mechanics and WoD setting use. Definitely will use them in mine games. ( I also love pirates, so I need them even more. )


                          My stuff for Scion 2E, CoD Contagion, Dark Eras, VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E & BtP
                          LGBT+ in CoD games

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by LostLight View Post
                            5) I have no clue, actually. Never gave it much thought. Freedom is a big thing inside for the Navio, so being organized into small groups feel a bit artificial. I think that every Captain has his own agenda, and his crew follows that agenda. In sort, there are as many factions as there are Captains- with only the King Captain to remind them they have their own obligations.
                            If I may suggest, this could be considered a faction, let's say the Adventurers. A second faction might believe the group has to become more unified in opposition to the most malevolent of the dream monsters (yes, this is a faction that goes against the most distinctive part of the group's nature, but it seems logical it would be there). A third faction might consist of those who are a little old to do much adventuring any more, but become advisors, storytellers, and proprietors of those port taverns that have been mentioned.

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                            • #15
                              could work, although I assume that the second group would not be very liked among the Navio


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