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How Arisens Can Handle Mundane Power?

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  • How Arisens Can Handle Mundane Power?

    Hello guys!
    Let's say I'm an ambitious Arisen and I wish to cultivate allies and connections to gain influence over the mortal world. How I can reach my goal considering that I'm going to be active only for a year or little more? I mean, I can entrust my mundane affairs to my cult, but there's no way to tell if my underlings will follow my wishes while I'm seeping maybe for decades. I'm really out of options?

    This make me feel that actually Arisens are more servants than masters, what do you thik about this?

  • #2
    Have your cult resummon you after you go back to henet. So long as you have a personal relic, it just gets drained whenever you're summoned rather than destroyed, and it regains its power after a few months (well within the time limit).

    That being said, there's a lengthy discussion about how mummies are not masters. Arisen and their cults alike are servants to the Judges, specifically the Arisen's Judge.


    "Nihhina kalekal-zidu kal masun, kal manudanadu. Nihhina kalekal-zidu nukal shaghu-desasudu — nihhina kalekal-zidu kal innu-desasudu udhkal samm." Arthur Ashe
    Check out my tumblr for Chronicles of Darkness-related musings
    He/him pronouns, please

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    • #3
      It also talks about Cults and high priests that think the Arisen are their servants often get just what is coming to them.

      A Decent can last for about 3 years, without resorting to extreme options. And as BigDamnHero pointed out, your Cult can re-summon you periodically without any significant cost using a personal Relic.

      An Arisen can set up a business or organization, then delegate to a reliable manager, with instructions for their Cult to raise them periodically to conduct re-evaluation and coarse correction. Like entrusting Stocks and Bonds to a broker. Except you can exact swift and gruesome death upon them if they try and swindle you.

      As to the Arisen being Servants instead of Masters - they are, but not to mortals. Mummies are middle management.


      Malkydel: "And the Machine dictated; let there be adequate illumination."
      Yossarian: "And lo, it was optimal."

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      • #4
        There are also Affinities that help manage your cult while you are asleep.

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        • #5
          Get your hands on a relic that provides free dots in Contacts and/or Allies!

          But if you don't have a cooperative GM/universe, it's relatively easy for an Arisen to be active more time than not, given the default rate at which a Relic recharges once bound to the Lifeweb. So first things first, you need a relic eligible for binding to the Lifeweb. You also need to compensate for the fact you are likely to be stuck at Memory 3 due to frequent Descents, so you'll want to attain the minimum Guild Status to forge your relic into a Talisman for its ability to recall important events for you. Also use more mundane methods of record keeping, though bear in mind that this leaves you vulnerable to cunning cultists subtly rewriting your own memories whenever you're asleep. Then you just play the "billionaire recluse" angle and try to work as much through proxies (cultists) as possible.

          Bonus points on the proxy angle for using that Utterance from Rio, the name of which I'm blanking on, that allows you to possess mortals. Hands down my favourite Utterance in the game, although it sadly came out after my Mummy campaign ended so had to instead base a short Mortal game around an Arisen NPC using it.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Azahul View Post
            Get your hands on a relic that provides free dots in Contacts and/or Allies!

            But if you don't have a cooperative GM/universe, it's relatively easy for an Arisen to be active more time than not, given the default rate at which a Relic recharges once bound to the Lifeweb. So first things first, you need a relic eligible for binding to the Lifeweb. You also need to compensate for the fact you are likely to be stuck at Memory 3 due to frequent Descents, so you'll want to attain the minimum Guild Status to forge your relic into a Talisman for its ability to recall important events for you. Also use more mundane methods of record keeping, though bear in mind that this leaves you vulnerable to cunning cultists subtly rewriting your own memories whenever you're asleep. Then you just play the "billionaire recluse" angle and try to work as much through proxies (cultists) as possible.

            Bonus points on the proxy angle for using that Utterance from Rio, the name of which I'm blanking on, that allows you to possess mortals. Hands down my favourite Utterance in the game, although it sadly came out after my Mummy campaign ended so had to instead base a short Mortal game around an Arisen NPC using it.
            Horse and Rider, was it?

            Also, to fight the Memory loss, sink as much XP as you can into it each Descent. Raise it at least 2 points, and you will slowly gain ground.


            Malkydel: "And the Machine dictated; let there be adequate illumination."
            Yossarian: "And lo, it was optimal."

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Vent0 View Post

              Horse and Rider, was it?

              Also, to fight the Memory loss, sink as much XP as you can into it each Descent. Raise it at least 2 points, and you will slowly gain ground.
              Yeah, that's the one. Fantastic Utterance.

              I'm always a little unsure how to treat XP and its accumulation from an in-universe perspective. An Arisen begins the game in the modern era with 20 experience and Memory 3 after 6,000 years of existence. That's a game conceit, obviously, so that you have some kind of in-game progress to make. But it does create situations where you have to imagine that the descent you and your players actually "play" has to be wildly unusual in terms of learning new skills and abilities. Perhaps you lost some of your character growth from past Descents through declining Memory, though not all facets of an Arisen should logically be susceptible to that. Perhaps there's a reason why a starting character who has only existed through infrequent Descents is still only at Memory 3. Or perhaps experience should be understood purely as a game mechanic and that growth on that level in-universe can't necessarily be counted upon.

              This is a much broader topic than just Arisen, you could make similar arguments by asking why a 30 year old and 20 year old starting character have no experience difference. I've actually seen games try to justify it (i.e. "older characters start with X amount of extra experience but lose Y amount of base attributes due to their failing physicality, or somesuch), but I think it's easiest to just assume that earning beats and experience is just a little bit unreliable unless you're explicitly a player character undergoing dramatic events in-game.

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              • #8
                One idea I've played with is to write up "High Powered" versions of the characters representing their prior "forgotten" abilities. Whenever they increase one of those stats (up to their prior levels), they get a discount (or in 2E, a Beat refund). To reflect that it is easier to regain lost power as opposed to learning new ones. But learning new abilities is still incentivized by changing conditions.

                For Mummy and their flaky Memory, you could even keep the "High Powered" sheet hidden and just dole out the XP for "reasons".


                Malkydel: "And the Machine dictated; let there be adequate illumination."
                Yossarian: "And lo, it was optimal."

                Comment

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