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A possibly rather stupid question concerning Duat...

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Azahul View Post
    More importantly, nothing in Dave's description gave me the impression that a Lower Depth was inherently unnatural (setting aside the fact that it's undoubtedly supernatural). Duat could easily be part of the natural process and still consume aspects of the world. Predators and scavengers are natural.
    Predators and scavengers are part of an ecosystem. The stuff a Lower Depth consumes goes nowhere. The stolen Sekhem of Duat is burnt for temporary relief or used to outfit the Arisen; Ammut's certainly not doing anything with it.


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

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Azahul View Post
      Which also puts A'aru as a Lower Depth, right? Since that's where the souls are meant to (at least originally) end up? I'll note that it's not entirely meaningless, but the general point I was getting at with my previous post (that there's a lot of baggage associated with the phrase "cast into the Lower Depths" as if it were some kind of hell, when it's more a kind of semi-scientific nomenclature) still stands if you can as easily argue both of Mummy's afterlives count.

      Well, according to the Arisen (not the Awakened), Aa'ru is the Supernal Realms.


      Dave Brookshaw

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Dave Brookshaw View Post
        Well, according to the Arisen (not the Awakened), Aa'ru is the Supernal Realms.
        I'm sure you could find some Awakened who would agree, if only because the Awakened are inveterate theory-junkies.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Satchel View Post
          Predators and scavengers are part of an ecosystem. The stuff a Lower Depth consumes goes nowhere. The stolen Sekhem of Duat is burnt for temporary relief or used to outfit the Arisen; Ammut's certainly not doing anything with it.
          What we know of Ammut directly contradicts that. She is presented as a source of Sekhem as well as a consumer of it. Duat is a place where Sekhem is cleansed of its imperfections so that it can return to become life again. Ammut describes herself as being directly involved in that process. Sekhem passes through her and returns to the world, she doesn't keep it forever.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Dave Brookshaw View Post


            No.

            It isn't a meaningless classification - it means an otherworldy dimension/place that's lacking some aspect of Fallen reality and consumes it, or has inhabitants that consume it when they break into more solid or ephemeral realms.

            In Duat's case, Sekhem. Also souls.
            Does that make most of the Nameless Gods like Azar, Ra, and so on Supernal beings?

            That might suggest that Aset might be an Archmage.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Azahul View Post
              What we know of Ammut directly contradicts that. She is presented as a source of Sekhem as well as a consumer of it. Duat is a place where Sekhem is cleansed of its imperfections so that it can return to become life again. Ammut describes herself as being directly involved in that process. Sekhem passes through her and returns to the world, she doesn't keep it forever.
              Ammut describes herself as wanting to bring the world to eternal silence. She is described in no uncertain terms as an oblivion-goddess and a force of anti-being. She is very directly comparable to the entropy of the universe and the promise of the bargain she accepted to let the world keep existing was that she would receive a portion of the world's Sekhem to feed her forever after.

              She explicitly does not need the things she takes and the only place where she's put forward as an engine of the universe rather than a threat to be appeased is in Book of the Deceived, where those ideas are forwarded by Ammut herself or Azar as the voice of the Judges, both speaking to an audience whose eventual sobriquet does not speak well for their veracity.

              "What we know of Ammut" is that every source that speaks about her uses the language of finality in relation to her consumption except for the explicitly probably-unreliable account of one of the Deceived, who suspects she lied to them and puts forth no reason for her not to have done so.
              Last edited by Satchel; 08-04-2017, 02:00 PM.


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

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              • #22
                The two statements are not mutually exclusive. She wants to bring about eternal silence. She is bound by the Law. So she doesn't, instead being compelled to purify Sekhem so that it might return to the world.

                Frankly, I always find the "Book of the Deceived information comes from an unreliable narrator" to be a terribly weak argument. I like to think the game's writers wrote that information for a reason, I usually don't take seriously the argument that the writers put down information with the intent that it be ignored. We aren't telling a narrative where the unreliable narration can be used to set up or mask an upcoming twist or reveal. The technique is still useful in the RPG game book format, principally as a way to canonically justify individual GMs having different takes on the backstory of Irem or the origins of the Shan'iatu or the Deceived, as appropriate to their specific game. It could be a good way of revealing more about the characters involved, so long as we know they are lying and are able to deduce more about the characters based on what they lie about. But we don't know for certain that Ammut is lying (the only lie we see directly called out as such in the Book's own narration is that of the identity of the narrator), and the revelation that Ammut lies is no revelation since that's basically why we have Shuankhsen. You're welcome to believe that she is, allowing people to believe whatever they want is presumably the whole point of writing that chapter from an unreliable perspective, but believing that she tells the truth expands the game in a far more meaningful way in my view. Positioning the force of entropy as an essential driving force of life in the universe (a necessary evil, for sure) is interesting given the context of the game as being about unchanging immortals clinging to what they once were.
                Last edited by Azahul; 08-04-2017, 11:11 PM.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Omegaphallic View Post
                  Does that make most of the Nameless Gods like Azar, Ra, and so on Supernal beings?

                  That might suggest that Aset might be an Archmage.
                  Or it might suggest that the notoriously ignorant Arisen actually have no idea what A'aru might possibly be and have simply used the Awakened's cosmology as their most relatable explanation.

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                  • #24
                    I'm guessing some of this, and more, will be covered in the Crossover book.

                    So someone might get their fandom hurt.

                    But you shouldn't let that keep you from doing what you want to do in, or feels right for, your game. Have fun with it.
                    Last edited by nofather; 08-05-2017, 12:30 AM.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Omegaphallic View Post

                      Does that make most of the Nameless Gods like Azar, Ra, and so on Supernal beings?

                      That might suggest that Aset might be an Archmage.
                      I think it is a fairly diminishing explanation to assume the truth is as simple as that, even if there is never an official stance on it (and I doubt even the Crossover Chronicles will care too much about such details, since nailing down setting mysteries in favor of one or other line is not something that would be conductive to a more interesting book).

                      The Mutapa Empire Dark Era avoids settling down on many of these things and gives more approximations of how each splat might understand the other through the lenses of their own world and magic. As an example from it, Anpu cannot normally be magically scrutinized, but if he allows it then a mage would register him simultaneously as a Supernal being aligned with the Death arcanum, a native of the Underworld, and a being from the Lower Depths, none offering a complete explanation.

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                      • #26
                        Why can't gods be of more than one realm? Maybe Anpu is a Supernal entity that now lairs in Duat; maybe he's a creature of the Lower Depths that's 'ascended' in some manner. And so on.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Demigod Beast View Post
                          Why can't gods be of more than one realm? Maybe Anpu is a Supernal entity that now lairs in Duat; maybe he's a creature of the Lower Depths that's 'ascended' in some manner. And so on.
                          So here's the brilliance of the way Anpu was described to Mages: how it works is a mystery.

                          What you suggest is certainly one possibility. Since those scenarios defy the normal rules for Supernal Beings (which cannot exist in the Fallen World indefinitely) a Storyteller would have to come up with an explaination for how Supernal!Anpu can exist in the Fallen World and why he registers as being from the additional realms.

                          There are other possibilities though. The way Anpu was described leaves open the possiblity that he is from beyond a Mage's normal understanding and the confused Symbols of Anpu are the closest representation their worldview has for what he really is. Since Anpu is a major aspect of Mummy's mythology, that possibility is important, since it leaves Mummy and Mage canonically codominant. Neither cosmology overrides the other. They exist simaltaniously.

                          If the answer to Anpu's existence was that he was Supernal, that takes all for the mystery out of it and it causes Mage's mythology to dominate Mummy's. That wouldn't sit well with fans and it takes half the fun out of things. This way, you can have one interpretation, I can have another, and someone else can have a third. If they all explain why Anpu can exist in these three states at the same time, they are all equally valid.


                          Patreon | He/His Pronouns | Currently writing: Tome of the Pentacle (OPP), The Hedge (OPP)

                          CofD booklists: Beast I Changeling | Demon | Deviant (WIP) | Geist l Hunter l Mage | Mummy | Promethean | Vampire | Werewolf

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                          • #28
                            I never understood the complaints people have concerning the CofD's games 'dominating' each others' mythoses. I have absolutely no problem with Anpu being Supernal, with the Exarchs ruling the universe, or 'one mythology overruling the other'. Then again, I'm the guy who freely did crossovers between different oWoD gamelines with nary a problem.

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                            • #29
                              Because it undermines the individual, unique narrative weight of each game, and supplants it with a game that I probably don't give a shit about or own.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Demigod Beast View Post
                                I never understood the complaints people have concerning the CofD's games 'dominating' each others' mythoses. I have absolutely no problem with Anpu being Supernal, with the Exarchs ruling the universe, or 'one mythology overruling the other'. Then again, I'm the guy who freely did crossovers between different oWoD gamelines with nary a problem.
                                It's fine at you own table or for individual games, but it would be pretty unequivocally terrible if it was set up that way in books or RAW.
                                Reseru summed it up well.
                                I should be able to run a game where the Exarchs are simply another name or tool for the Judges if I want to without having to break from Mummy canon - and since this would be a Mummy game, Mage's core matters less. If the Exarchs as tools of the Judges was core-book, though - that'd be pretty frustrating for Mage players and Mummy players alike.


                                My Promethean Homebrew.

                                Yes, I made it the same way as a Promethean. No, the authorities haven't found me yet.

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