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Characters with multiple Covenants

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  • Characters with multiple Covenants

    In order to appease my taste for hybrid and generalist characters, let's discuss the characters that belong in multiple Covenants, by developing Covenant Status in more than one organization and/or Merits such as Right of Return, Twilight Judge, Independent Study, Casual User, One Foot in the Door, or Laity. It is assumed that by expending the experience to buy such Merits, they have effectively dealt with the social drawbacks of their divided loyalties as it concerns making the character viable and manageable (it is of course OK and part of the purpose of the exercise if they become a recurrent plot hook), at least until they go and teach trade secrets to non-members. This totally includes part-Dragon characters that use Ordo Dracul Status and Twilight Judge to pursue and master multiple Coils (including heretical ones).

    Which Covenant combinations would you deem especially cool, useful, and thematically feasible ? As for myself, I find the Acolytes-Defiant combination especially cool and thematically quite compatible, and the mix of Cruac and Coils rather useful. From a strict optimization viewpoint, you might even throw some Carthian Law and Status in the mix with Right of Return, since the Firebrands admittedly have some rather interesting tricks of their own, but I find the mindset of the Carthians (and the First Estate and the Sanctified) much less appealing than the Circle or the Ordo for ideological reasons (thematically speaking, I do not see much difficulty for this combination). On other hand, I definitely support using Twilight Judge to allow a character to study and master several Mysteries, even if they have dual membership (and spend some of their potential Covenant Status) in the Circle and study Cruac too.
    Last edited by Irioth; 12-24-2016, 02:23 PM.

  • #2
    Carthian/Ordo seems like a fairly feasible combo, since their ideals are fairly complementary (applying human societal rules and power structure to the Masquerade and transcending the Vampiric condition).

    I think the pair that'd be hardest to reconcile might be Lancea/Crone, seeing as they have fundamentally different ideas on what a Vampire is supposed to do and be.


    Genius: the Transgression 2E is a thing that's being worked on.

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    • #3
      Hrm... is a Dragon with a Wyrm's Nest able to buy additional coils beyond their status, since they get bonus status inside their nest?

      How much EXP in are we talking?

      I have this vision of an Invictus / Carthian Mekhet who is publicly an Invictus but also runs a secret comic for the Carthians. The comic is way-too-close to Kindred politics and is a parody, but also never reveals supernatural things so it's not a masquerade breach. Being in this obscure comic is simultaneously embarrassing, but also sort of an honor--like being made fun of on a famous talk show. His Carthian social experiment is how parody and humor can affect the free flow of information. Mechanically, Carthian + Invictus do amazingly terrible things with social merits. Throw in Circle of Crone and you can basically double your Ally dots.

      I like the idea of an Ordo Dracule 3 / Lancea et Sanctum 1 / Circle of Crone 1 character that is trying to study all blood sorcery. Not sure if its useful, but I like the theme. You can also build the swankiest evil base possible.

      Invictus / Circle of Crone lets you use the Cruac ritual to add Cruac to your Presence to make Courtoise more useful.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by malonkey1 View Post
        Carthian/Ordo seems like a fairly feasible combo, since their ideals are fairly complementary (applying human societal rules and power structure to the Masquerade and transcending the Vampiric condition).
        True, and other combos that are seem relatively easy to make are Circle/Ordo (embracing the empowering/liberating parts of the Vampire condition and trascending the limiting ones) and Carthian/Circle (an ideal of personal and social empowerment/liberation for the Kindred)., or for that matter Carthian/Circle/Ordo.

        I think the pair that'd be hardest to reconcile might be Lancea/Crone, seeing as they have fundamentally different ideas on what a Vampire is supposed to do and be.
        The toughest combinations to justify do seem Lancea/Crone and Carthian/Invictus, since they are ideologically at odds, although I expect some players and characters are still going to be able and pull them off.
        Last edited by Irioth; 12-25-2016, 05:21 AM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by SoulGambit View Post
          Hrm... is a Dragon with a Wyrm's Nest able to buy additional coils beyond their status, since they get bonus status inside their nest?
          Indeed, and Wyrm’s Nest also provides important stronghold benefits, such as lessened frenzy and Xp discounts to Coils on-site. On the other hand, Twilight Judge also allows you to learn as many Coils as you want regardless of Ordo Status, provides safe access to heretical Coils, and has other important social benefits.

          How much EXP in are we talking?
          Strictly speaking, the sum of the various Covenant Merits and Disciplines you want to buy, plus the membership Merits. Of course, a character this invested in Kindred societies and their trade secrets in all likelihood also did a considerable investment in social Merits (especially if they belong to Carthian and/or Invictus) and/or Disciplines (especially if they belong to Lancea, Crone, and/or Ordo).

          I have this vision of an Invictus / Carthian Mekhet who is publicly an Invictus but also runs a secret comic for the Carthians. The comic is way-too-close to Kindred politics and is a parody, but also never reveals supernatural things so it's not a masquerade breach. Being in this obscure comic is simultaneously embarrassing, but also sort of an honor--like being made fun of on a famous talk show. His Carthian social experiment is how parody and humor can affect the free flow of information. Mechanically, Carthian + Invictus do amazingly terrible things with social merits. Throw in Circle of Crone and you can basically double your Ally dots.
          Speaking of players that are able to justify ideologically difficult combinations… :-)

          I like the idea of an Ordo Dracule 3 / Lancea et Sanctum 1 / Circle of Crone 1 character that is trying to study all blood sorcery. Not sure if its useful, but I like the theme. You can also build the swankiest evil base possible.
          I like this theme and power combo a lot, too, and I’d say it is very, very cool and useful. You should just throw in Wyrm’s Nest or Twilight Judge in the mix, so you do not suffer caps about Coils. The Lancea/Crone combo may be somewhat difficult to justify in terms of ideology, but if you can do the other Carthian/Invictus ‘odd couple’, I trust you can do this, too. There is the added difficulty Cruac and Theban Sorcery have opposite effects and requirements on Humanity, but the character would enjoy unrestricted access to both Disciplines if he can maintain Humanity at 5 (the Coil of Ziva would be a big help here).

          Last edited by Irioth; 12-25-2016, 08:23 AM.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by SoulGambit View Post
            I like the idea of an Ordo Dracule 3 / Lancea et Sanctum 1 / Circle of Crone 1 character that is trying to study all blood sorcery. Not sure if its useful, but I like the theme. You can also build the swankiest evil base possible.

            A bit off-topic, but I have a character made who is just like that. He's a Dragolescu who is primarily Ordo and religiously Circle, acting the part of your typical backstabbing hyper-political vampire in order to cover up the fact that he's obsessed with gaining as much magical power as possible. His main goal being stealing the power of a god for himself and using it to bring back his dead sister who is a ghost and has him as an anchor, using the Ordo and the Circle as fronts in order to detract suspicion from his magical interests and to gain more magical ability. In the game I expect I'll play him in there's also a group of demon-related Lance who he'll probably join (or torture a member of to force his way in) to get a demon companion and Theban.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Fumus View Post


              A bit off-topic, but I have a character made who is just like that. He's a Dragolescu who is primarily Ordo and religiously Circle, acting the part of your typical backstabbing hyper-political vampire in order to cover up the fact that he's obsessed with gaining as much magical power as possible. His main goal being stealing the power of a god for himself and using it to bring back his dead sister who is a ghost and has him as an anchor, using the Ordo and the Circle as fronts in order to detract suspicion from his magical interests and to gain more magical ability. In the game I expect I'll play him in there's also a group of demon-related Lance who he'll probably join (or torture a member of to force his way in) to get a demon companion and Theban.
              It's an interesting character background and a good realization of the kind of concept we have been discussing, but I do not exactly get why the character feels driven to play the part of someone highly involved in backstabbing vampire politics to cover up his true focus in magical power. It is obvious why he would want to hide his ambitions to become a god and his involvement with demons (especially to his mainstream Sanctified fellows), but the rest seems a wasteful distraction. Prevalent, even obsessive, interest in magical power, the supernatural, and vampiric abilities to the relative neglect of backstabbing Kindred politics and mundane influence is an accepted career choice for a vampire, even an admired one if it leads the character to build up supernatural power and develop useful mystical expertise, or the three superntural-oriented Covenants would not exist and be the way they are. Unless, of course, he focuses his political ambitions on building up more and more influence and a power base within the Ordo, Lancea, and Crone to get unlimited access to their mystical secrets. This would totally make sense. Or alternatively, his need to have this front is his own expression of the typical Kindred liability to indulge in power plays for their own sake.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Irioth View Post

                It's an interesting character background and a good realization of the kind of concept we have been discussing, but I do not exactly get why the character feels driven to play the part of someone highly involved in backstabbing vampire politics to cover up his true focus in magical power. It is obvious why he would want to hide his ambitions to become a god and his involvement with demons (especially to his mainstream Sanctified fellows), but the rest seems a wasteful distraction. Prevalent, even obsessive, interest in magical power, the supernatural, and vampiric abilities to the relative neglect of backstabbing Kindred politics and mundane influence is an accepted career choice for a vampire, even an admired one if it leads the character to build up supernatural power and develop useful mystical expertise, or the three superntural-oriented Covenants would not exist and be the way they are. Unless, of course, he focuses his political ambitions on building up more and more influence and a power base within the Ordo, Lancea, and Crone to get unlimited access to their mystical secrets. This would totally make sense. Or alternatively, his need to have this front is his own expression of the typical Kindred liability to indulge in power plays for their own sake.

                My idea is that the guy is obsessed with gaining massive magical power and is pretending to be a super political social obsessed idiot to throw off suspicion, to make it seem like he's not that magically powerful and isn't trying to do something that is massively heretical and worthy of death according to some of the religious covenants in his city. Basically pretending to be a typical political vmapire in order to satisfy his own paranoia about others not liking his attempts to achieve godhood.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Fumus View Post


                  My idea is that the guy is obsessed with gaining massive magical power and is pretending to be a super political social obsessed idiot to throw off suspicion, to make it seem like he's not that magically powerful and isn't trying to do something that is massively heretical and worthy of death according to some of the religious covenants in his city. Basically pretending to be a typical political vmapire in order to satisfy his own paranoia about others not liking his attempts to achieve godhood.
                  Hmm, so it is half his own paranoia, half a sensible drive to hide his involvement in demon worshipping that could indeed land him in hot water with his own covenants. Ironically speaking, if he spins it the right way, neither the Ordo nor the Circle would mind his drive to become a god for ideological reasons, although of course they may fear his power if he's successful. The Ordo approves a quest for personal transcendence, and the Circle would like it if this supposed 'god' is made to look like some kind of incarnation of the Crone. Out of curiosity, does his own apparent political interest manifest in building up status, influence, and a power base within his own three supernatural-oriented covenants, in doing the same about his own city, or even in getting a quaternary foothold in the Carthian or the Invictus ? Since the way you have developed his background, the character even seems to have a decent justification for some dabbling in one of the political-oriented covenants too, although it would be easier to pull it off with the Carthians.
                  Last edited by Irioth; 12-25-2016, 02:13 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Invictus / Carthian isn't too hard to justify honestly. Just rememberthat Invictus is about governing the masses of kine through the monolithic megabureaucracy and Carthians are about creating the best Kindred government. An Invictus that is seeking to create a better Kindred society to free up resources to protect the masquerade might look to the Carthians. A Carthian looking to better control Kine and how Kindred relate to Kine would probably want to look towards Invictus.

                    They are aesthetically oppossed but idealogically synergistic. It's actually a shame they don't work together, because if anyone could make the new Camarilla it's those two groups working togeter.

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                    • #11
                      I would find Order + Lance the hardest to justify / sustain in-character; they have some pretty fundamentally divergent views of how to understand and treat the vampiric condition. It makes more sense if the Order affiliation is secret imo.

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                      • #12
                        Its not wnough to be God's monster. You want to be the BEST monster God has. If God has objectively allowed the means by which enlvolution is possible then why not pursue it?

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                        • #13
                          It's very understandable/reframable as a personal vision. As a matter of theology or ideology, it's very rickety, and the Lancea et Sanctum are filled with immortal blood sorcerers willing to kill over matters of theology and ideology.

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                          • #14
                            If your setting presumes that there are magic blood sorcerers willing to kill everyone who disagrees with them, then either that is part of your story or you wont let anyone dual covenant all.

                            Also, we are taoing this from a very macro level. Things tend to be more personal. Vampire LeBob is a Lance with a friend Carla (they bonded over liking classic cars) in the Ordo Dracule. LeBob helps carla out with her meetings and is a (theologically sound but academically rigorous) sounding board for her research. LeBob is allowed to learn some coils and join the club because hes a great guy and Carla vouches for him. Etc.

                            I imagine most dual covenants being in that vein. That said the political covenants (Carthian and Invictus) are the easiest to combine with one of the idealogical covenants (the rest) bwcause going to a service or a book club can be a thing you just do.

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                            • #15
                              Carthians put a big focus on change and renewal. Circle is all about just being yourself. Invictus put a big focus on structure, institutional inertia, hierarchy. Lancea is the dedicated monsters under the bed, keeping humans scared for their own good. Ordo is all about evolving, growing, questioning.

                              Carthian/Circle are social Darwinists of the scariest sort. Circle/Invictus are neo-feudal god-kings, ruling over the mortals as wolves over deer. Invictus/Lancea are the ultimate traditionalists. Lancea/Ordo are scholars nonpareil, seeking the truth in all things. Ordo/Carthians are social engineering nuts who make Marxists look tolerant of that religion garbage.

                              From a story perspective, dual membership is easier if two covenants have a political alliance. If the Bishop and Kogaion have an understanding, who's going to bat an eye if some Sanctified learn how to be better monsters, or if some Defiant start to wonder if they anger at God was part of His plan, after all?


                              Haberdasher's Requiem Conversions and Homebrew

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