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[2e Homebrew] Fangs of Mara

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  • [2e Homebrew] Fangs of Mara

    My first try. Since I'm not certain if all Reach needs to be assigned at Attainment creation, some of these will have wiggle room. Also, I might have bumped some aspects of the Spells by making their Duration demand concentration. My excuse is that Legacies explicitly allow non-standard spells. However, if anything seems unbalanced, please let me know.

    Fangs of Mara
    Nickname: Nightmares

    Parentage: Mastigos (However, in such a small Legacy tutors rarely discriminate based on the Path) Nameless, Seers of the Throne, Guardians of the Veil
    Background: Legacies, the Sublime, page 139
    Appearance: Legacies, the Sublime, page 138

    Ruling Arcanum: Mind
    Yantras: Succeeding on an Empathy or Intimidation roll relevant to the spell (+2), Withstanding or inflicting torture (+2), Any records of nightmares and trauma (+1, +2 if tailored to the spell), Comfort objects (+1, +2 if tailored to the spell)
    Oblations: Studying or recording relevant Lore, Inflicting nightmares or trauma, Leading a successful therapy session, Brainwashing or deprogramming, In-depth psychoanalysis, Facing or indulging one's fears

    Attainment 1
    Prerequisites: Mind 2. Empathy 2 or Intimidate 2. Must have entered dreams of an Intruder

    Soul Marks (Death 1)
    This Attainment works like the spell it's based on, except it utilizes the Mind Arcanum and somewhat modifies its scope. Fangs use this power to detect mental Conditions and Tilts (and determine whether they result from Quiescence), tell-tale marks of Acamoth influence, the Paradox Condition, and to gauge the target's Integrity/Wisdom rating. The Attainment can even be used to recognize Intruders on sight, but it's notoriously unreliable in this capacity. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting.

    Optional: Space 1

    Correspondence (Space 1)
    Fangs of Mara always focus on what others don't want to confront. They can easily read Sympathetic Links to sources of trauma, anxiety and self-destructive behaviors. While it doesn't give them insight into the nature of these traumas, it gives them a springboard for investigation. The Wiser Fangs occasionally use this Attainment on themselves, to resolve their personal issues. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. Searching for specific Sympathetic Links usually demands +2 Reach. However, in case of this Attainment this cost is waived, since the Attainment is of limited use compared to the original Spell.

    Attainment 2
    Prerequisites: Mind 2. Empathy 3 or Intimidate 3

    "Fear's Icy Hand" (Mind 2) modeled after Exceptional Luck (Fate 2)
    Fangs know first-hand how erroneous thought patterns and unregulated emotions can lead to failure of the worst kind. While their standards demand that they shouldn't freely inflict what they can't take. By this point of their development, they can take a lot. This Attainment imposes a dice penalty equal to Potency to all mundane actions the subject takes for as long as the Fang can focus on casting. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. An extra Reach is assigned to Sensory Range, so to balance the effect, it's Duration drops to length of concentration.

    Optional: Space 2

    Supernal Veil (Prime 2)
    Fangs make enemies easily. When spying on Intruders, Scelesti or more respectable Mages, it is better not to make ones presence known. This Attainment works like the Spell it's based on, but it only covers Legacy Attainments and Mind Spells cast by the user. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. Since the Attainment is not a discrete effect, but rather a modification for other spells, it can be applied at will.

    Attainment 3
    Prerequisites: Mind 3. Empathy 3 or Intimidate 3. The other Skill at 2 or one of the following at 2 (Investigate, Medicine, Occult, Stealth, Subterfuge)

    Befuddle (Mind 3)
    By studying imperfections of the mind, Fangs can reach the underlying framework beneath thoughts and feelings and interfere with what they find there. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. An extra Reach is assigned to Sensory Range, so to balance the effect, it's Duration drops to length of concentration.


    Augment Mind (Mind 3)
    The Fang carries the trauma of their initiation like a badge of honor. Or a shield. Through a scene-long ritual, the Fang may draw great mental strength from their experiences. When this Attainment is developed, the Fang chooses to increase a single Attribute, which can't ever be changed. The Fang can boost this Attribute beyond their Gnosis maximum. This Attainment is mostly used to enhance Resolve or Composure, but Presence and Wits are not unknown. 1 Reach assigned to Advanced Duration. Since the Attainment can't be used on others, the Storyteller may consider giving it extra Reach for Instant Casting.

    Optional: Space 3

    Web-Weaver (Space 3)
    Dark portions of the Astral? Dreams of Intruders? A strange Emanation Realm? Everyone is bound by fear and whatever the medium, Fangs learn to tap into it. When using Legacy Attainments and Mind Spells through Sympathetic Casting, the Fang treats their Sympathetic Connection to the target as one step stronger for every point of Potency. This can step up a non-existent connection and bring the Sympathetic Withstand down to zero. The connection is strictly one way - it does not make the user any more vulnerable to retaliation. However, to call upon it the Fang needs a sympathetic Yantra of one of the target's traumas. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. Since the Attainment is not a discrete effect, but rather a modification for other spells, it can be applied at will.

    Attainment 4
    Prerequisites: Mind 4, Empathy 4 or Intimidate 4

    Hallucination/Terrorize (Mind 4)
    This Spell resembles Hallucination, except it can only evoke nightmarish visions. The Fang may choose to tailor them to the target, or to let target's subconscious and perhaps other factors to create their content. As long as the Spell is in effect the Fang can inflict the Insensate Tilt on their victim or let the Game Master choose an appropriate Tilt. This Attainment can be used for communication, but all transmissions become strongly disturbing. Fangs regularly use it for this purpose anyway. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. An extra Reach is assigned to Sensory Range, so to balance the effect, it's Duration drops to length of concentration.

    Optional: Space 4

    Dream Reaching (Mind 2)
    The Fang can enter a dream of a sleeping creature - Be it a Sleeper, Awakened, Intruder or something else besides. Even before initiation into the Legacy, this is the first spell prospective Fangs learn - one they will use multiple times until the end. The Spell can be cast Instantly when in contact with the target, or with a scene's meditation when not. Curiously, this Attainment gives Fangs a recognizable tell when in the Astral. Their Silver Thread turns into a heavy chain. Some Legates are still studying the ramifications. 1 Reach remains to be spent upon use either on Sensory Range or Instant Casting. 1 Reach assigned to Advanced Duration. 1 Reach assigned to allow participation in the Dream.

    Notably, entering the dreams of Intruders is not entirely reliable. Gulmoth that approximate physical creatures dream reasonably often, but the anatomy of their dreams can "surprise" even an experienced Fang. Sometimes, investigators can't step back from being participators in the dreams. In some cases, suffering Soul-Shock is a lethal proposition. In all cases delving deeper into the Oneiros is... advanced. Acamoth, being Goetia, don't dream except in very rare cases. The brave Fang who entered one such dream has been since kept sedated and comfortable. New Fangs are brought to him to hopefully learn something and then leave laughing nervously about "Abyssception". Rare, strange Abyssal phenomena dream even though they don't approach being a discrete entity. Fangs have managed to quarantine an Abyssal Verge after discovering that the very narrative of entering it seemed to dream.

    Attainment 5
    Prerequisites: Mind 5, Empathy 4 or Intimidate 4. The other Skill at 3 or one of the following at 3 (Investigate, Medicine, Occult, Stealth, Subterfuge)

    Psychic Reprogramming (Mind 4)
    For their studies, Fangs use this Attainment to alter their target's psyche and see if their susceptibility to Acamoth influence changes, but it has many other uses as well. Some Fangs use it for therapy or even alleviating the damage they left. The Attainment can be used either within Dreams through a scene-long ritual or Instantly through physical contact. In the last case, sitting on a sleeping target's chest is a Legacy's tradition. 1 Reach Assigned to Advanced Duration. 1 Reach remains to be spent upon use either on Sensory Range or Instant Casting.

    Optional: Space 5

    Supernal Dispellation (Prime 4)
    Fangs take the lessons of their Third Attainment and take them to their logical end. This Attainment works like the spell it's based on, but only as an aide for using Legacy Attainments and Mind Spells and only to suppress Wards and similar protections than stand in their way. The Potency of such Spells is not actually reduced, but it's considered lower for the purpose of Fang's magic. 1 Reach assigned to Instant casting. 1 Reach assigned to Sensory Range. Since the Attainment is not a discrete effect, but rather a modification for other spells, it can be applied at will.
    Last edited by Teatime; 11-11-2016, 10:10 AM.


  • #2
    Fangs of Mara and the Astral

    Fangs have all the means and reasons to maintain a stronghold in their Temenotic realm. Considering their need for secrecy and how easily each individual's experiences can be lost, Fangs regularly network and review their results. Unfortunately, either due to their actions, or their usual thoughts, the area was frequently a target of Acamoth interest. Fangs have made lemonade out of lemons and took the opportunity to study the Enemy on their conditions. The realm had to be erased a few times to prevent corruption, and each time "non-vital" knowledge was lost. It's one of the reasons Fangs often squirrel away records in the Material Realm. Now, with proper Security in place, most Acamoth are either unaware of the place or are captured and quarantined. The more worrying are the ones that deliberately stay away. Even those that don't intend a confrontation can sell their knowledge to someone who does.

    In the depths of the Astral, off the road between Temenos and Anima Mundi there is a realm containing the rawest of human nightmares. It has always been of interest to Fangs of Mara, but between their numbers and the challenges of studying the place they still feel woefully ignorant. Even then they count among their number the foremost experts on the region. Their research allowed them to discover an important phenomenon - intense experiences, especially those caused by the supernatural, leave a temporary Imprint in the realm. Patrolling the realm allows to discover sites of recent supernatural activity, including places where Sleepers were damaged by Dissonance. Fangs can use this phenomenon to search for Scelesti and Intruders, but those who do usually become quite informed about other Things that bump in the night. Some Fangs use the information to earn goodwill with the local Orders - a way of keeping oneself useful. However, there exists a factor that discourages careless entry. Aside from the usual dangers of the Astral, Fangs occasionally become targets of scrutiny by a powerful presence. What happens next varies. Travelers have found themselves taken to an important Imprint - possibly of their own making, confronted with their fears and desires, trapped with a monstrous Goetia, or even back in the Material Realm, far off from where they meditated. Of those who survive the ordeal, most reports have one thing in common - a sense of deranged love Fangs feel directed towards them. It's an unnerving experience and as far as Fangs know, there are no records of other Mages going through it.
    Last edited by Teatime; 05-10-2016, 03:05 PM.



    • #3
      I like it, but with the Space optional attainments it looks like they're Mind effects, am I reading that wrong?


      • #4
        You're not wrong. Dream Reaching is a blatant Mind effect, but in "Legacies: The Sublime" it was also an optional Attainment for Space. Correspondence is an existing Space spell and by spending Reach it already allows you to sort Sympathies by flavor, even without Mind. It could be said that for every Mastigos Space and Mind work in tandem.

        I based the rest of optional Attainments on the original Optional Attainment. In all cases they play with Sympathy to assist other magic. It needn't have been only Mind magic, but it needed limiting for both thematic and balance reasons.



        • #5
          You could make Fangs have special sympathy to trauma and nightmares. Then, by studying a subject's nightmares and fear, they could cast through that without needing a personal connection to a person as a person. In other words, they would tend to literally think of people as collections of pain and trauma if they only relate through their attainments. I rather like that.

          I'm thinking something along the lines of:

          1st Optional Space 1:

          With sufficient scrutiny of a person's unique pattern of pain, the Fang can to identify that particular mind from the sea of other patterns. A Fang of Mara is capable of targeting a specific knot of pain with mental magics as material sympathy. Any time the Fang carefully observes a subject confronting or otherwise dealing with pain, the Fang's understanding of and connection to that subject's personal Nightmare grows.
          A Fang can always treat a Nightmare as equivalent to a direct link to the mind that spawned it without needing to borrow sympathy.

          Ed: The attainment doesn't create new connections, it allows them to develop naturally by coming to understand the subject's relationship to suffering. What it does is allow the Fang to cast through their sympathy to the subject's Nightmare instead of directly to the subject. The primary upshots are that the Fang can use very inhuman understanding of others instead of personal ties and that any subject not bearing such an attainment has an extra step of indirection to navigate to the Fang than the Fang has to them. Useful, but easily handled with an extra spell or two.

          (Then, you can make Correspondance (focused on pain and trauma) a later attainment to gain the consequential Reach)
          Last edited by thenate; 08-04-2016, 03:05 PM. Reason: Clarification

          Grump, grouse, and/or gripe.


          • #6
            Also, I'm a big fan of not having Attainments with Instant Cast be considered "always-on". In those cases, I think it's more elegant to have the Reach on Advanced Duration (assuming the spell's primary factor is Duration too) -- if you say those rituals can be performed during/as an Oblation, it gives the Legacy a reason to stop every now and then, giving them tangible benefits for performing them.


            • #7
              If I understand you correctly, the effect you describe is almost identical to the Space 3 Attainment. Your description touches on in from a different angle, but it's not contradictory with what I wrote. It also effectively creates new Sympathies which makes it too powerful for a first Attainment. You did inspire me to make a change, though. If I make it require a representation of subject's trauma as a Yantra, it should be more flavorful, build on the first Attainments and hint at everything you said.

              Justin Sane
              Rather than make these Attainments discrete effects, my goal was to have them modify other spells, like Arcana Attainments do. That being considered, I thought having them always available was appropriate. The Reach assignment was just to approximate the right power level, rather than to create a legal spell. I will use your advice for Augment Mind, though. I'm also curious how Perfected Adepts will deal with Honing the Form, when they finally come out. Despite of my finagling, I do want to keep the Legacy "legal".

              Oddly enough, I thought the Mind Attainments would be the questionable ones. Soul Marks is unpolished, Befuddle is boring, Psychic Reprogramming is forced and I don't know if "Fear's Icy Hand" is balanced.