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  • #16
    Personally, when I’m digesting the book by myself, I don’t mind the jargon. In some cases, like having precise terminology to describe in-universe phenomenon, it helps the verisimilitude for me.
    That said, the jargon has often caused problems when I try to introduce others to the game. I tend to resort to awkward circumlocutions like “personal soul-space” for onerios or “symbolic focuses” for yantras, etc. Also I can never remember how to pronounce “demesne”.
    As others have said, it works just fine if you’re invested. It’s just a bit of a roadblock for some to buy-in in the first place.


    The longer I study science the more I am convinced that it is functionally indistinguishable from what our ancestors would refer to as sorcery. And I would know, being both scientist and sorcerer.

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    • #17
      I get your position on Yantra, Mudra and Imago, as they're rare words baked into the magic system, but Withstand is a pretty self explanatory term (and it needs a unique term since it's parts of the rules). All splats have proper nouns for their powers, but Mage does take the cake by having four different subsets on top of the base Arcana: Praxis, Rote, Attainment and Legacy Attainment. They also need unique terms but it's pretty difficult finding self-explanatory terms for those concepts. The repeated use of Attainment is a problem, though kinda the opposite since it's the lack of an expanded terminology that confuses things.

      Everything regarding Mage Sight and Sympathy is self-explanatory. They all refer to different things so they all have different names but the names are all highly indicative of what they refer to. The accessibility is actually really good when it comes to the terminology. Unfortunately the same can't be said about the rule texts for those things, but I digress.

      Gulmoth and Acamoth are kinda redundant due to the lack of differences between them in second edition, but it might be justified in later books.
      The various Supernal entities are even more egregious; they might have more differences, but having 15 names for 10 beings that follow a single template is pretty excessive. That said, the names are there for flavour and you really don't need to learn them. Since they're basically identical in all but flavour, all rules concerning them simply use the generic "Supernal entity".

      I think the rest you mentioned are either proper nouns (names) or actually descriptive terms.

      My conclusion is that while Mage: The Awakening is loaded in terminology, the vast majority comes from the fact that Mage: The Awakening is loaded with stuff that needs terms or names so you can actually refer to them.


      Demesne: Like its synonym descendant "domain" but "de-" instead of "do-".
      Last edited by Tessie; 02-05-2021, 12:44 PM.


      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)

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

        What is the draw of a game about the occult and mystical to a person who holds the subject in such contempt? Why would one want to like a thing that they hate?
        I was making fun of Madame Blavatsky and Aleister Crowley!

        The real world occult history of the world has a lot of silly and shady characters.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Professor Phobos View Post

          I was making fun of Madame Blavatsky and Aleister Crowley!

          The real world occult history of the world has a lot of silly and shady characters.

          But you seemed to reduce Awakening's real world influences down to them.


          I have approximate knowledge of many things.
          Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post


            But you seemed to reduce Awakening's real world influences down to them.

            Nah! Awakening is a big pot, they threw everything in, from John Constantine to the Morning of the Magicians.

            People generally called the thread correctly; there's a lot of jargon because there's a lot of concepts that benefit from specific identifying terminology. Ars Magica, a boomer RPG from the before-times that is essentially Mage: The Awakening's great-grandfather, had the same giant lexicon issue.

            Intentionally obscure jargon-overuse can be a pretentious thing to close something to 'outsiders', but Mage is a commercial product and I'm sure they don't actively want it to be an impenetrable mess. It's just there's a design tension between all the stuff they put in the game and having a game not so full of stuff it's overwhelming. I mean, Signs of Sorcery is just chock-damn-full of stuff, it's understandable if someone's eyes glaze over a bit while trying to digest it.

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