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Bane Interpretations (Not Initial Clan)

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  • Ashes
    started a topic Bane Interpretations (Not Initial Clan)

    Bane Interpretations (Not Initial Clan)

    I currently have a player whose Mekhet has dropped to Humanity 6. When looking over Banes, her and I had some differing interpretations (pg. 108; VTR 2E). I'm curious about responses to my own opinions, as well as the handling of these Banes from other story-tellers/players.

    Holy Day - While the obvious interpretation has religious connotations, I could also see this granted to a day wherein the individual practices a spiritual commitment (a "rest day" or a day of focus on the self). Ultimately, this particular day has established, habitual or ritualistic actions committed thereon. The character has to hold that day as sacrosanct.

    Invitation - Defining "private dwelling" is proving a bit of a pain because unless something is public, it's private... right? Questions of what is considered ownership of said property have also come up. I know that Kindred acknowledge property ownership insofar as Invictus corporations and most Kindred have a territory/haven/safe place of some variety sometime in their requiem. For example, would a Kindred need to be invited into the apartment they shared as kine with a roommate if that roommate was not Kindred?

    Symbols - For items of faith/devotion to weaken a character, would the character have to be opposed to religion or otherwise put at odds with it? For example, Dracula having this Bane would make complete sense given his Rites of the Dragon re-telling of his turning into a Kindred. However, a character with no strong feelings either way sort of strikes me as a moot character exploration opportunity. A character that defies "God" (or a god) being harmed would provide an interesting "counter" (if not in truth, then at least in story) to the individual's animosity towards said faith/belief. A religious character now harmed by their kine-self's artifacts of religion/belief may remind them of their monstrosity.

    What are your thoughts, everyone?

  • Tessie
    replied
    Originally posted by SunlessNick View Post
    A fairly good guideline I've come across is "Would a regular human have misgivings about going in there without an invitation? If so, it blocks a vampire." That probably means an occupied hotel room would be blocked, but not a lobby or a bar.
    Unfortunately that guideline would also include private or semi-private places that aren't dwellings, such as basically all non-public working environments where you're not employed. Hell, even cars could fit under that umbrella. Also closed bedrooms, because even if you're being invited to a home you're generally supposed to keep out of private spaces.

    My personal opinion on the matter is that it should be limited to dwellings that someone considers their home (and not just a temporary home). Hotel rooms? Not unless the occupant is permanently residing there. If this is too lenient (or harsh) in play, just adjust the parameters to fit your own game. There's nothing wrong with changing the rules during play as long as everyone agrees that it's better than trying to adhere completely to consistency. I can't even count the number of times things've been changed retroactively in the games I've been a part of.

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  • SunlessNick
    replied
    Originally posted by Gellydog View Post
    I'm not sure if I like the idea of a hotel room being protected just because people stay there. It may be a "dwelling," but it's also one that's meant for random, ever-changing people to inhabit temporarily. Where do we draw the line? Is a homeless shelter protected? It's a dwelling that accepts different people each night, but not necessarily open to the public the way a hotel atrium is. (you usually don't just walk in and fall down into a bed; there's some vetting/bookkeeping) How about a sheltered, ramshackle structure built from scavenged pieces found under an overpass? It's in a non-private location and hardly secure, but if a single person built it and has been living out of it for years, it might be more of a "home" than the shelter.
    A fairly good guideline I've come across is "Would a regular human have misgivings about going in there without an invitation? If so, it blocks a vampire." That probably means an occupied hotel room would be blocked, but not a lobby or a bar.


    There was some discussion on a Dresden Files forum about what kind of buildings would have thresholds that hamper supernatural beings. The metaphysics of the Dresden Files is a bit different - essentially magical stuff works via a collective psychic sense among people that it ought to (not belief that it does, though that helps, but belief that it should) - so the threshold of a home works because there's a general cultural instinct that home should be a safe place (even if you don't really believe it is). So I figured buildings with a similar instinct ought to have them too: if "We'll be safe once we get to the..." makes emotional sense without further clarification, then it has a threshold; so churches and inns do, while garages and taxidermists don't.

    How that might work in Requiem is that vampires are rooted in humanity and how much humanity remains is a key measure of a vampire's psyche. While it's not in the game as stands, you could incorporate the notion that human cultural instincts can take on metaphysical force in a vampire's Blood. For one embraced in the West, that might take the form of an aversion to crosses, because "vampires ought to be warded off by crosses" is something you might find even an atheist just assuming (eg why do they work in Buffy?) - or being blocked by thresholds because of the aforementioned "home should be a safe place." (That this happens as they lose Humanity is an irony they can complain about to their unbeating hearts' content ).

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  • Caitiff Primogen
    replied
    Something that exists at an interesting intersection of Holy Day and Invitation and a concept I've always wanted to explore in the context of vampirism and liminality.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eruv

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  • tsusasi
    replied
    Originally posted by Ashes View Post
    Edit: Also, how does everyone feel about a character with both Dominate and Invitation? A part of me feels like this is a pretty meta-gaming sort of decision. However, I could also see it as the Bane forcing a Kindred that might otherwise not need to use Dominate as often to use a clan-specific discipline. That could provide psychological consequences - a character that always tells people to invite them in, giving commands? [/I]
    Personally I agree with Poseur's earlier statement, and will go so far as to say most of them are laughably trivial. The idiosyncrasy itself was supposed to push creatures affected by it to engage in deceptive or intimidating behaviors so obviously it theoretically would result in your psychological consequences.
    http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...pireInvitation

    But I don't use Invitation as written in the book specifically because it only comes into play in highly specific or custom tailored scenarios and it can still be avoided entirely by spending a single turn to exercise a modicum of basic courtesy or issue a threat, cost free without the use of powers. Add vampire powers like Predatory Aura, Dominate, Majesty or Nightmare and that means that social action is pretty much a guarantee of success. Even ignoring that single turn of social action is inconsequential since vampires can't be knocked out by bashing damage and most damage sources do bashing anyhow. Tack on Resilience and it can be nonexistent.

    I prefer the Dresden Files' take on the trope but in regards to it's use in the novels, there are varying levels of effectiveness and it is quite obviously intended as and used as a protection (in conjunction with the obligations of hospitality) from supernatural creatures as a whole, not a trivial weakness limited to fringe exemptions as is the case in this game line. Even True Blood made it more viable as a possible weakness since an invitation can be rescinded at any time and would result in the vampire being supernaturally ejected from the premises if he was there.


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  • Ashes
    replied
    I'm definitely happy that this topic has seen an exchange of opinions and ideas.

    I can see where both Poseur and tsusasi are coming from when it comes to Holy Day. I like both the ideas of established, cultural, sort of ritualistic days of importance (as well as religious, obviously). However, I also like the idea of a particular bane being connected to a story element (such as a bane being obtained via a cursed preacher - sort of like a bizarre retribution).

    Likewise, Holy Symbols has had an exchange of standards where I can see both as well. I do acknowledge the line between a player choosing a bane and a character having it inflicted upon them. I just thought that for story purposes something they held strong opinions on would prove more interesting. However, the idea that tsubasi presented - that the affliction doesn't originate within the kindred, but rather the individuals that regard said symbols with reverence - I hadn't considered at all. It also causes a player character to immediately form a relationship with said symbols as it's difficult to not do so when they're proving antagonistic. And that relationship could range from confusion to back-biting spite. I do however feel that Christian/Catholic iconography has a bit of a leg-up when it comes to proving an actual disadvantage (as least in a campaign set in the United States). Because, unfortunately, if a Kindred felt affronted by symbols not commonly found, what's the bane contributing to the story?

    Quite frankly, I'm still stumped on what interpretation of Invitation I prefer. Everyone's raised some really legitimate points. It's actual a bit of a relief that it's stumping.

    Edit: Gellydog's 2nd post and tsusasi's 3rd post, if combined, is actually how the Dresden Files (different game, different publishing, different system, etc.) works. Not relevant to the topic beyond a nod towards this being a topic covered in another tabletop game.

    Edit: Also, how does everyone feel about a character with both Dominate and Invitation? A part of me feels like this is a pretty meta-gaming sort of decision. However, I could also see it as the Bane forcing a Kindred that might otherwise not need to use Dominate as often to use a clan-specific discipline. That could provide psychological consequences - a character that always tells people to invite them in, giving commands?
    Last edited by Ashes; 12-28-2017, 03:30 AM.

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  • Poseur
    replied
    Originally posted by tsusasi View Post
    So the Humanity 4 vampire takes the damage, feeds off 3 people in the house, drags a 4th from the house feeds off them, heals, and literally kicks them to the curb. Full vitae.


    Kinda yeah, but then again IMHO banes are a bit weak over all. Like them better in danse macabre.
    Or you could just eat one , heal the damage when exiting and dumping the body ^_^

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  • tsusasi
    replied
    So the Humanity 4 vampire takes the damage, feeds off 3 people in the house, drags a 4th from the house feeds off them, heals, and literally kicks them to the curb. Full vitae.
    Last edited by tsusasi; 12-27-2017, 08:11 PM.

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  • Tessie
    replied
    Except in the latter case you can heal before you feed, meaning you tank up fully. That's not the case with the invitation bane, since you need to leave before you heal the damage taken. For a Humanity 4 vampire it means you'll be 3 Vitae from full pool, and when you're still on feeding-from-humans BP that can be quite a lot.

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  • tsusasi
    replied
    Not really. Any vampire capable of using predatory aura can secure an invitation. For that matter there's not even a stipulation that the invitation must come from the owner or resident.
    Waltz in, take bashing damage, feed, walk out, heal. It's no different than walk up to a drunken derelicit or pick a fight with gang bangers in an alley, take bashing damage from the encounter, feed, walk away, heal.

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  • Ever Professional
    replied
    tsusasi Well, I think it helps in the metaphysical version of the home that the vampire couldn't heal the bashing until after they actually left the home. I think that'd make any kindred a little bit nervous (at least ones with low humanity) because they'd have to hunt twice after breaking and entering; once to heal themselves, and a second time to replenish their store of vitae after healing themselves.

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  • tsusasi
    replied
    If I attributed to it the metaphysical weight of a home versus a private dwelling, as a bane it would do a hell of a lot more than petty damage that can be healed by taking some vitae from the occupants. Nothing actually prevents a vampire from entering without an invitation. Something more along the lines of being unable to enter at all and having access to their mystical powers ripped from their bodies with Lethal damage if forced inside and having all their supernatural powers drop off anyone so long as they're inside.
    Last edited by tsusasi; 12-27-2017, 04:17 PM.

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  • Gellydog
    replied
    I guess it just seems to not line up with my understanding of how the metaphysical bane works. I see it as drawing on the idea of "home" having a spiritual weight. Being home is more than just being in a private, secure place. It's about being in a place that you conceptualize as yours, that belongs to you and that is almost an extension of your being in a way that a purchased hotel room doesn't match. An army base is private and secure, and people live there, but I don't think it fits the idea of home in a way that would trigger the bane; it's too big and too impersonal.

    If someone did live in a hotel room indefinitely? Then yeah, sure, I could see that qualifying. Just as I could possibly see a homeless shelter that has a regular "clientele" who all know each other and view each other as family, and who all view the shelter as their collective home, qualifying. It's about how the person who lives there views their dwelling, not a legal or technical definition. Similar to how it's about the person wielding a holy symbol's faith, not the vampire's.

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  • tsusasi
    replied
    Originally posted by Gellydog View Post
    I'm not sure if I like the idea of a hotel room being protected just because people stay there. It may be a "dwelling," but it's also one that's meant for random, ever-changing people to inhabit temporarily. Where do we draw the line? Is a homeless shelter protected? It's a dwelling that accepts different people each night, but not necessarily open to the public the way a hotel atrium is. (you usually don't just walk in and fall down into a bed; there's some vetting/bookkeeping) How about a sheltered, ramshackle structure built from scavenged pieces found under an overpass? It's in a non-private location and hardly secure, but if a single person built it and has been living out of it for years, it might be more of a "home" than the shelter.
    In other words, a character might find themselves legitimately inconvenienced by this bane once in awhIle and actually have to activate a discipline on someone in order to secure an invitation or do something extreme, like set the place on fire to flush out an enemy purposely exploiting that particular weakness.

    A hotel is a place where someone makes a contractual arrangement with someone else to sleep behind four walls and a roof to protect from the elements as well an obligation from them to provide a measure of privacy and security to prevent their body and belongings from being violated while they sleep. There is no limit on the duration and there are also people who do actually make hotel and motel rooms their permanent residence. A homeless shelter does not offer anything other than cover from the elements. There is no real or implied expectation of privacy or security or indefinite residence duration at a homeless shelter.

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  • Gellydog
    replied
    Originally posted by Rathamus View Post
    A dwelling is a place where people stay overnight, usually sleeping while private can imply ownership(private property) or simply seclusion(privacy). I would agree with the above description of a hotel lobby being fair game but a room with someone inside being off limits.
    I'm not sure if I like the idea of a hotel room being protected just because people stay there. It may be a "dwelling," but it's also one that's meant for random, ever-changing people to inhabit temporarily. Where do we draw the line? Is a homeless shelter protected? It's a dwelling that accepts different people each night, but not necessarily open to the public the way a hotel atrium is. (you usually don't just walk in and fall down into a bed; there's some vetting/bookkeeping) How about a sheltered, ramshackle structure built from scavenged pieces found under an overpass? It's in a non-private location and hardly secure, but if a single person built it and has been living out of it for years, it might be more of a "home" than the shelter.

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