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Judges - Are they Great Old Ones or Idigama?

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  • Judges - Are they Great Old Ones or Idigama?

    I did not read MtC 2E preview ( yet ) but I listed a lot of interviews about it in podcast-sphere (?) - Matthew Dawkins mentioned few times how Judges can be Idigama of Werewolf: The Forsaken. In some other discussions, I heard Judges are equated to Great Old Ones of Lovecraft. So to what beings they are closest?

    To me Idigama sounds really weird, as Idigama are spirits that are 'mad' now and change their shapes and - for better words - incarnations now, coming back for werewolves. Does not sound very Judge-ly for me...

    Here is explanations that sounds to me a lot like Great Old Ones of H.P. L...

    Originally posted by Satchel View Post
    The Iremite gods are sort of a mix of things; Sutekh was sibling to the Judges, born at the culmination of Creation's frantic self-justifying frenzy of generation by Kephera and Atum, and as the one child that did not drive his parent to despair, seized/was bestowed the highest authority of the bunch, which is why the Judges created the temakh to carry out his demand to satisfy Ammut's hunger with a wager instead of a down payment.

    Anpu and Re are the two eyes of Sutekh, cast out of himself to rule in Duat and look upon the Scroll of Ages as the impetus for the twofold antes of living under the Law of Suffering; having deprived himself of his agency thereafter with the loss of his eyes, Sutekh's generative organs were refashioned into Azar, who acted as the voice of the Judges for the temakh and charged them with the instruction of the Remet and was later made the ruler of Duat in Anpu's place.

    Ultimately, the gods are beneath the Judges in Iremite cosmology but were bestowed Will by Sutekh's passing as everything was; the Judges took names when they made the temakh, who served Azar in the same way that the Judges bent the knee to Sutekh.
    ( I think I understand this qoute - but it's very messed up metaphor and many alien words for me... )
    Last edited by wyrdhamster; 11-17-2019, 01:50 PM.


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  • #2
    I don't think we're going to get a straight answer on this, and while I believe they are idigam having gone through a chrysalis around the ideas of some laws, I've already met people with the 'don't want werewolf in the game' viewpoint (though once through it's chrysalis an idigam can be anything, like a vampire or watchtower, it's not like they're 'just' spirits).

    Which is fine for their tables. Yeah I think they're idigam, which can be as 'great old one' as you'd like.
    Last edited by nofather; 11-17-2019, 02:31 PM.

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    • #3
      The last thing I heard when Dawkins discussed it seemed to put it in the "I use them as Idigam but it's entirely a use what works for your game." sort of thing. I like Werewolf but no, I'm definitely not making them Idigam.


      “As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.” noun: empathy the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

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      • #4
        Short answer: Nope and Nope.

        Long answer: The Judges are monstrous beings to be sure, but they aren't melt-your-brain by looking at them (any more than any other supernatural entity is) the way the Old Ones are and they lack the indifference of Old Ones-in fact, their biggest problem is that decidedly want to interact with humanity by way of punishing them and ultimately feeding them to Ammut.

        Now there ARE Old Ones in Mummy the Curse, sure, lot of confrontation with Lovecraftian-esque entities-but they are counted among the Iremite's demons, not their Judges. The King in Ochre is one not-subtle nod in that direction

        As for Idigam, their metaphysics have some clear differentiation with each other, not the least of which the powers of the Judges may manifest in a myriad of ways-but the one thing that has never come up within the Iremite metaphysics is interaction with the Shadow or the Gauntlet. You imagine that wouldn't be the case if they were entities rooted in that portion of the universe.


        Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
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        • #5
          Could the Judges be Kerberoi (like from Geist: the Sin-Eaters)?


          It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done... Sidney Carton’s last line before he goes to the guillotine to save Lucie

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          • #6
            Going by my memory of 1e, haven't sat down to read the relevant previewed 2e passages yet, so stop me if I'm wrong:

            In countenance, they are less like alien horrors whose notice you are beneath and whose words and actions you cannot comprehend, and more like distant fathers whose affection can never be won, micromanaging owners furious over the slightest fault, and the fever dreams of fire-and-brimstone Christians, the fever dreams where God's role is only as the fear of condemnation and punishment and never sympathy or reward. They are all your failings and weaknesses thrown back at you.

            You're not beneath their notice. They see you and they know you, personally, by name. And they hate you.

            Originally posted by Penelope View Post
            Could the Judges be Kerberoi (like from Geist: the Sin-Eaters)?
            The Judges of Death are the Judges of Death. An individual table game can make whatever connections you want, but in terms of the cross-table setting the books lay out, the Judges aren't a thing defined in another book. They're a thing defined in a Mummy book.

            More directly: they're not Kerberoi because Kerberoi are defined by tending dominions in the Underworld. The Judges rule from the Duat, which is not the Underworld, and at least as far as I understand, pending 2e reveals later in the manuscript, it is not a place where ghosts congregate. If you want to make them Kerberoi in your home game, you would change this.
            Last edited by Stupid Loserman; 11-17-2019, 03:01 PM.

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            • #7
              So barring the cosmological discussion Preview 3 is going to give us (undoubtedly, this is going upend a lot of the current understanding of Mummy), we need to understand one of the singularly more terrifying and also bothersome aspects of Mummy the Curse.

              Traditionally, there has been no universal/unifying answer for the world of Chronicles. The overview across elements reveals that the world is something of a mish-mash of powers and forces that shape it and are shaped by the collected world in kind. The relation of cause-and-effect for most of them can lead to a passive affection of the world setting stage for concentrated and focused forces, and humanity seems to have a really big effect on things. The Astral is a reflection of the world that has a leaky walled off section for humanity, the Shadow reflects the natural world and Humanity just happens to create a lot of new life in their way, the Underworld feasts upon the castoffs of the world and humanity happens to make a lot of them, and the forces of Arcadia seem to at least plagerize human innovation for form. The God-Machine may be an actual OG god, or it could be a retroactively inserted creation of something else, probably humanity. The Curses in the Blood are some kind of coagulation something interacting with humanity as well.

              You get the idea-point is that no one gameline has enough to warrant a sole origin point for everything, and that the world as it is by large seems to continue as an competition and co-operation between these forces and the results that spiral outward from their motions.

              Well.

              almost all of them.

              Mummy the Curse still can't answer for the whole of reality in it's own right, but one of the most distrubing things about it's lore and gameplay is that it's cosmology and metaphysics hew a lot more towards "dinosaur" for the chicken-or-egg question. There's a circular relationship to most everything else that can end up being that a lot of other things exist because of things spiralling outward from the collision of humanity and the natural development of the world, but Curse's position to everything is not so circular, and instead comes across as more foundational and fundamental than many other gamelines and their big forces playing and affecting thing. It's not enough to be The Genuine Origin Story of the Chronicles World, but it's the closest to making a legitimate claim to the title, and it has the feel that if there were just a few other contemporaries, you'd have that picture.

              Now where this is terrifying is that Curse's world is bleak. A running joke is that Ammut always wins, and it's funny because it's true. Humanity is identified by the gods as remet, meaning sacrifice. The majority of the world may move only by virtue of suffering, and the virtue of will is so minimally exemplified that Starry A'aru is barren, save for two who are now acting as bodhisattvas. It's bad, and if this isn't just some corner case, but instead an actual represention of the fullest picture of reality, then that really sucks.

              Of course, it's also wildly breaking with the rest of the picture, and understandably a lot of people don't like that (Mummy supremacy would be more a thing if people actually gave Mummy a shot, and while they would still be wrong, there would be less of a defense for it than with Mage).

              If you must account for some kind of crossover, then freely consider that the Judges are often called the Shadows of The Law, and late pieces clarify that The Law in question is The Law of Suffering that opposes Will, and if that sounds an awful lot like the Lie, then congratulations you can read text-it wouldn't be weird to say that the Judges are shadows on the walls of the Fallen cast by the light of the Supernal past the Exarchs-but even shooting that in the foot, the Exarchs at least have a case for having one iteration of reality where they were human before becoming symbol gods, where as the Judges don't have any such possibility of retroactive insertion presented within it's text (which is not to say it didn't happen, but it definitely isn't saying that that did ever happen, as opposed to the Exarchs and the God-Machine) so far.

              What this amounts to is that, while other things can sometimes play with the notion that something from another line is what they actually are (even if they are highly warped and unusual incarnations of such), the most terrifying thing about the Judges is that they have the best case for literally just being what they say they are.
              Last edited by ArcaneArts; 11-17-2019, 06:15 PM.


              Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
              The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
              Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.

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              • #8
                Well if Duat is a Lower Depth, then the Judges are anti-Supernal Beings who lack a particular facet of reality and thus hunger for it.

                perhaps they lack injustice, and thus feed on the souls of sinners


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                • #9
                  Originally posted by glamourweaver View Post
                  Well if Duat is a Lower Depth, then the Judges are anti-Supernal Beings who lack a particular facet of reality and thus hunger for it.

                  perhaps they lack injustice, and thus feed on the souls of sinners
                  Lower Depths are lacking something, but that doesn't make them anti-Supernal, or even a-Supernal.


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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by glamourweaver View Post
                    Well if Duat is a Lower Depth, then the Judges are anti-Supernal Beings who lack a particular facet of reality and thus hunger for it.

                    perhaps they lack injustice, and thus feed on the souls of sinners

                    For as bad as the Judges are... And they really are bad...

                    I think those sinners are being used to feed something much, much worse.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by glamourweaver View Post
                      Well if Duat is a Lower Depth, then the Judges are anti-Supernal Beings who lack a particular facet of reality and thus hunger for it.
                      The Judges made Duat. They were there when the world was formed and their spite for the Remet is pretty well owed to the fact that they had to make them for Sutekh's wager instead of cutting their losses with Ammut up-front. They are worldly beings that happen to possess the power and authority to dwell in the storehouse of condemned souls without constant fear of consumption, but the fact that they pain the world with their direct attention is reason enough for them to keep their distance most of the time.

                      perhaps they lack injustice, and thus feed on the souls of sinners
                      That's not how Lower Depths work. The Inferno is a Lower Depth that "feeds on sin" in the sense that the game-abstraction process of losing Morality and similar traits represented an actual metaphysical loss that empowered demons of that stripe. Not every concept is significant enough for its lack to create a largely-inescapable hell-dimension around that void, particularly when that lack is of a lack.


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                      • #12
                        There's also lots of injustice with the Judges and Duat. Nobody is ever allowed to Starry A'aru.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Tessie View Post

                          Lower Depths are lacking something, but that doesn't make them anti-Supernal, or even a-Supernal.
                          “Anti-Supernal in the sense that they are the opposite direction removed from the phenomenal, not in the sense of matter/antimatter.


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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by glamourweaver View Post

                            “Anti-Supernal in the sense that they are the opposite direction removed from the phenomenal, not in the sense of matter/antimatter.
                            A fair reading, but for future purposes, Anti-Supernal tends to read Abyssal to people, which considering the Shan'iatu went to war with a Scelesti-driven nation seems unlikely.

                            But thank you all the same!


                            Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
                            The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
                            Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by branford View Post
                              There's also lots of injustice with the Judges and Duat. Nobody is ever allowed to Starry A'aru.
                              Speaking of which, the mythology also holds that the Judges are Princes of A'aru and, separately, that A'aru is the one place that does not contain Khepera (i.e. existence) even back during the "time" of Nu; it's where the Scroll of Ages is kept, in the sky beyond the sky, and that in turn is where the Judges write the names that their temakh serve — where Re says "the Judges keep their secrets."

                              Originally posted by Hymn to the Creation of the Temakhs
                              We feasted upon our brother,
                              Sutek, Possessor of All Sins, Strange Son of Atum,
                              We Princes of A'aru and Judges of Duat feasted!

                              Yes, the gods arose from what we have cast away,
                              our excrement, the offal of our feast,
                              but the poisoned meat of our brother made them imperfect.

                              She of the Yawning Maw is unsatisfied,
                              She Whose Teeth Are Red as Dying Stars demands sacrifice,
                              and we have promised Her an offering.

                              Yet Sutek has raised his flail, the Arm of Atum, and crook of his Will,
                              so the sacrifice might choose between She Who Hungers,
                              or estates upon the fields of A'aru.

                              The gods are imperfect, so we must create perfect teachers,
                              for this is what we promised Sutek the Sinner,
                              We Judges of Duat must obey with perfect intention.

                              Thus, we write new names upon the Scroll of Ages,
                              Utter forth the Word upon Keb's black land, and bring forth the temakhs!

                              Therefore, hear the verse of Usekh-Nemtet!
                              I am the First Judge, the Father of Fathers, He Who Decorates the Pillar of the Gods.
                              He who defies the order of things knows the law of suffering, for he seeks to evade it.
                              I bind my temakhs to remind the sacrifices of their place, below the Princes of A'aru, the gods, and masters mortal and immortal!
                              The matter of Duat sees more play, presumably, because the Shan'iatu do not share their creators' standing and are trapped in Duat awaiting a judgment they are incapable of receiving, and they're the ones that made the Arisen what they are, but the Judges are, as the Litany of the Fivefold Soul puts it, "masters of all worlds."


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