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[2E] Brother Clement – Nosferatu Methuselah from Lancea Sanctum

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  • [2E] Brother Clement – Nosferatu Methuselah from Lancea Sanctum

    I’m preparing one of chronicle antagonist for my Werewolf game – ancient vampire from Middle Ages that hunt on descendants of Uratha that killed his Sire and ‘brother’ at times of Vikings. I have some questions about Methuselahs phenomena and would be glad for some guidance in NPC creation. I offer then sharing with ready ancient vampire to use in your games. 😉
    Questions on the start:
    1. I understand that Methuselahs need their cycles of Torpor – and in those they come weaker, literary loosing Disciplines dot, yes? So how those ancient vampires survive on ‘night-to-night’ basis in All Night Society?
    2. I want my Methuselah to return to All Night Society in modern Lancea Sanctum domain and pretend to be only Ancilla or Young Eldar, circa 200 years at most. Is it possible with some powers or something like that? Can any vampire just judge other Kinder age?
    3. What XP amount would be suitable for 1350+ years old vampire? Shown in Thousands Years of Night 100 XP seems like joke.
    And now we go to the Brother Clement history...

    Background: Brother Clement was one of first monks on Northern Scotland on Isle Iona that came in over one hundred years after Saint Columba mission. He was isolated servant of God because of his leprosy. In small colony he worked with those like him, copying holy manuscripts. Until came his Sire.

    Ambrosius was one of Nosferatu that remembered last days of Roman Empire. Or at least he thought he was. He was ‘martyr’, Dark shining example in the ways of Sanctified and Haunts for Clement. Hideous, terrifying, dark angel in immortal flesh. And then werewolves took Ambrosius from Clement.

    They came with Vikings. When pagans slaughtered the abbey, Raging wolves in threw human skin shredded his Sire and Mauris, brother in Ambrosius Blood. Clement survived only because his gift to Obfuscate. But then – seeing his ‘father’ and ‘brother’ ripped apart – he forsworn he will revenge on descendants of wolves that took them from him. Now, ancient monk comes to your city...


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  • #2
    First misconception: The vampire might lose Blood Potency, and augmented attributes and Skills above superhuman limits, but not discipline knowledge.

    Second: Barring witness recognition, elders are capable o adapting to the modern world, over and over, so that's entirely possible assuming the elder wants to resign to his rights within the organization.

    I don't know, 500xp? 1000? I wouldn't worry with the exact amount, just fill in the blanks as needed.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Malus View Post
      First misconception: The vampire might lose Blood Potency, and augmented attributes and Skills above superhuman limits, but not discipline knowledge.
      So if Methuselah get to Disciplines level 6+ he can have those even after Torpor time, yes?

      Originally posted by Malus View Post
      Second: Barring witness recognition, elders are capable o adapting to the modern world, over and over, so that's entirely possible assuming the elder wants to resign to his rights within the organization.
      So 1350+ years vampire can pretend to be like 200 years old only, something like made on early 1800's, yes? No other Kindred will not 'sniff' how old Methuselah is?


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      • #4
        You're mixing VtR up with VtM. Disciplines cap at 5 dots. Additionally, I don't think 6+ Attributes and Skills are lost or suppressed even if the elder falls below 6 in BP in second edition.


        Bloodline: The Stygians
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        • #5
          Originally posted by Tessie View Post
          You're mixing VtR up with VtM. Disciplines cap at 5 dots..
          Thousand Years of Night seems to point that you can have 'superDevotions' even if they use Disciplines from 1 to 5...

          Originally posted by Tessie View Post
          Additionally, I don't think 6+ Attributes and Skills are lost or suppressed even if the elder falls below 6 in BP in second edition.
          Where should this info be in 2E corebook? Would check rules.


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          • #6
            But there's no rules that differs between regular devotions and so called elder devotions. They're all just devotions. It's just that older kindred tend to develop more powerful devotions since they have higher Disciplines and more XP.

            "When her Blood Potency falls below six dots, the vampire does not lose any Attributes or Skills above the fifth dot."
            Last sentence on page 89.


            Bloodline: The Stygians
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            Mage The Awakening: Spell Quick Reference (single page and landscape for computer screens)

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            • #7
              1. They survive the same way as any other vampire.
              2. A Mekhet using Auspex to ask the question. "How old is this vampire?" Will yield the correct answer. Especially if this Brother Clement character is lying about it or trying to keep it secret.
              3. Build the character and total the XP afterwards. Then look at it a week later and see if there's some merits, attributes , skills you can pare back and do it. Tally the modified character's XP expenditure then shave off another 15% Xp from that.

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              • #8
                As others have said, but to recap a bit:

                1. Blood Potency is reduced through Torpor. This is a benefit and a drawback. All other Disciplines, Skills, and Attributes remain the same. Merits (especially social merits) may suffer from being ignored. Obviously mortal touchstones will need to be re-established. Thousand Years (or the main book, I disremember) point out that ghouls cannot be used as touchstones--which is a contradiction from other presentations of them. Decide how you like it.... Personally I like ghouls as touchstones, but you could charge a small merit tax to do so, for example.

                2. Torpor in 1e VtR was terrifying and to be avoided: a penalty for aging. In 2e it's a refreshing pause and many elders look forward to re-inventing themselves as vibrant members of the Danse after a century or so. They may even relocate, assume new identities and otherwise ditch their past live(s) to make the break cleaner. Listen to the Johnny Cash cover of "Hurt" and you have the attitude of an elder contemplating torpor.

                3. Elder Devotions are not clearly "elder"... it's a bit of a failing of the book, really. On this note, if the character wants to conceal his age and sneak around domains looking for werewolves he might develop a simple Devotion that obfuscates his past from Auspex: either making such questions come up blank or having a "persona" that he sets and Auspex returns, subject to a clash of wills test.

                4. But generally speaking on the XP side, consider how active a character was during a given period of time, especially in learning new things and subjecting themselves to danger. An elder who just naps and wakes up to re-assume the reigns of power (looking at you, Invictus Ventrue!) isn't going to learn much from each cycle--the suggest XP in the book is probably sufficient. Someone who literally travels the world and can honestly answer to being from "lots of different places" with his funny polyglot accent probably has several times the suggested amounts. --It's your call.

                --Khanwulf

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Khanwulf View Post
                  2. Torpor in 1e VtR was terrifying and to be avoided: a penalty for aging.
                  I mean, it's still not great — falling into torpor with any frequency effectively caps your Humanity at 5, and falling into torpor for long enough to shed Blood Potency remains a problem for detachment in and of itself until you hit Humanity 3; you can get around both of those limits by taking banes, but you only get so many of those. There are elders with the capacity to relish the chance for reinvention because the vast majority of elders are desensitized to the alienating effects of torpor outside the context of complete culture-shock.


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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Khanwulf View Post
                    On this note, if the character wants to conceal his age and sneak around domains looking for werewolves he might develop a simple Devotion that obfuscates his past from Auspex: either making such questions come up blank or having a "persona" that he sets and Auspex returns, subject to a clash of wills test.
                    So let's make those Devotions - one for 'blank' answer and second for 'I choose my answer cause I'm so great' one. I suspect both will be based on Obfuscate and Auspex, yes?

                    Originally posted by Khanwulf View Post
                    4. But generally speaking on the XP side, consider how active a character was during a given period of time, especially in learning new things and subjecting themselves to danger. An elder who just naps and wakes up to re-assume the reigns of power (looking at you, Invictus Ventrue!) isn't going to learn much from each cycle--the suggest XP in the book is probably sufficient. Someone who literally travels the world and can honestly answer to being from "lots of different places" with his funny polyglot accent probably has several times the suggested amounts. --It's your call.
                    For ease of discussion - let's assume Brother Clement goes for cycles of 200 years. Being Embraced in circa 650 A.D., his Sire and 'brother' being slain in 800 A.D., he run and gone to nap circa 820 A.D - from then on circle is set. So he wakes up in 1020 A.D., then is active up to 1220 A.D., then goes to sleep until 1420 A.D. to wake up, goes to sleep around 1620 A.D., wakes up in 1820 A.D. and is active last 200 years, again. He looks to fulfill his vow, until he goes to sleep in 2020 A.D. now. How this would repercus on his XP pool?

                    Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                    I mean, it's still not great — falling into torpor with any frequency effectively caps your Humanity at 5, and falling into torpor for long enough to shed Blood Potency remains a problem for detachment in and of itself until you hit Humanity 3; you can get around both of those limits by taking banes, but you only get so many of those. There are elders with the capacity to relish the chance for reinvention because the vast majority of elders are desensitized to the alienating effects of torpor outside the context of complete culture-shock.
                    Could you explain more this Humanity problem with 200 years Torpor in mentioned above cycles? On what pages of 2E VtR corebook it is pointed?


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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post

                      So let's make those Devotions - one for 'blank' answer and second for 'I choose my answer cause I'm so great' one. I suspect both will be based on Obfuscate and Auspex, yes?
                      Let's make this simple:

                      Cloak of Ages [Merit **, supernatural]
                      When the vampire uses The Familiar Stranger he may define at the same time as his appearance elements of his backstory that will be visible to cursory interrogation by Auspex. For example he may disguise himself as "a sickly middle-aged plumber from Toledo with a history of bad marriages" instead of "a frail man". Any failure to overcome the vampire's Obfuscate through an Auspex Clash of Wills becomes a Dramatic Failure and provides impressions based on the false persona assumed. As with The Familiar Stranger the vampire has limited control over how others perceive him and cannot use the power to directly influence their thoughts and emotions.

                      After a review, you could perhaps adapt a Devotion based on Obfuscate 2, Auspex 1 to blank out a vampire's background, but it would be somewhat obvious to an Auspex user ("you get ... nothing... it's like he was born this night") and tend to create as many questions as the solutions it addresses. My recommendation is to go with the above merit, which shouldn't be any more powerful than Swarm Form as 2-dot merits go.

                      --Khanwulf

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                        Could you explain more this Humanity problem with 200 years Torpor in mentioned above cycles? On what pages of 2E VtR corebook it is pointed?
                        The Sample Breaking Points chart on page 107. "Falling into torpor" is a breaking point at Humanity 6 or above, and "Spending a year or more in torpor" is a breaking point at Humanity 4 or above. Per the Humanity Scale breakdown on the preceding page, most elders are going to have reduced their Humanity to the point of being Callous, which leaves the primary concern of torpor for their Humanity as the Humanity 2 "Seeing a culture that didn't exist when you were alive" breaking point.


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                        • #13
                          There's also surviving a century at Humanity 4, surviving 500 years at Humanity 2.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Khanwulf View Post

                            Let's make this simple:

                            Cloak of Ages [Merit **, supernatural]
                            When the vampire uses The Familiar Stranger he may define at the same time as his appearance elements of his backstory that will be visible to cursory interrogation by Auspex. For example he may disguise himself as "a sickly middle-aged plumber from Toledo with a history of bad marriages" instead of "a frail man". Any failure to overcome the vampire's Obfuscate through an Auspex Clash of Wills becomes a Dramatic Failure and provides impressions based on the false persona assumed. As with The Familiar Stranger the vampire has limited control over how others perceive him and cannot use the power to directly influence their thoughts and emotions.

                            After a review, you could perhaps adapt a Devotion based on Obfuscate 2, Auspex 1 to blank out a vampire's background, but it would be somewhat obvious to an Auspex user ("you get ... nothing... it's like he was born this night") and tend to create as many questions as the solutions it addresses. My recommendation is to go with the above merit, which shouldn't be any more powerful than Swarm Form as 2-dot merits go.

                            --Khanwulf
                            I like it - but why 'blank' power would be Devotion and Cloak of Ages is simple Merit? I do not understand reasoning here.


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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post

                              I like it - but why 'blank' power would be Devotion and Cloak of Ages is simple Merit? I do not understand reasoning here.

                              Because of the foci of the base powers/Obfuscate dot levels.

                              The Familiar Stranger, core, is about disguising yourself as something you're not. Disguising your history at the same time is a natural extension of it in much the same way that Swarm Form is a natural extension of Protean 3. You don't need a new, separate power to extend an existing one like that, doing the same thing in a slightly different way or area. Compare with, for example Claws of the Unholy, which does a new thing--inflict Agg damage--and therefore is a Devotion. The line is fine, but I think we're good.

                              On the other hand, Obfuscate at lower levels is about you or your target (objects and then other people) not being noticed, about them being either there (power off) or not-there (power on). A "blank" power to do that to a non-material thing ("my background") targets a totally different area and is conceptually something you'd use while being otherwise noticed. In other words, you'd need a switch to take Obfuscate 2 and apply it to either self or self's background--which tells me we're dealing with a Devotion here. Further, the desired effect is one that should demand a Vitae expenditure.

                              Iterative extension of effect? Potential merit.
                              Retargeting of similar effect/Vitae cost? Potential Devotion.

                              YMMV of course. Ultimately it's semantics: the player (or NPC) pays an XP cost that's similar and get the desired effect. And, in both cases, the development of the ability is one that would take in-game effort and a certain adaptation and story behind it.

                              --Khanwulf

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