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  • The Kresnik and the Kudlak

    Here are twin bloodlines that work together as mutual antagonists. They are based on the myths of the Kresnik and the Kudlak, two entities that take the form of spectral animals and fight at night. The Kresnik is normally seen as "holy" but in my NWoD, thats just because they have better PR.
    Cuvari Rugasa

    Guardians of Rugasa

    There have been various reports of a white wolf throughout the city of Dubrovnik. This animal seems to appear when someone is in danger. The animal seems to be almost spectral, immune to harm, but it fears fire.
    A butcher knows this legend, and feels safe as he walks home at night. He spots the beast, and thinks of it as a friend. Without warning, the beast appears next to him. Startled for a second, he regains his composure.
    Parent Clan: Daeva
    Bloodline Disciplines: Celerity, Majesty, Protean, Vigor
    Nicknames: Kresnik (Croatian), Hunters or Slayers (Friendly), Traitors (Insult)
    Bloodline Bane: The Guardians are unable to overcome their vampiric nature, and therefore keep the Daeva clan bane. When a Guardian feeds from a mortal once they are fine. When they drink for a second or later times they must roll Humanity or gain the Persistent Dependent Condition (Blood and Smoke: Page 302).
    The Kresnik are desperately attached to the lie they present to humanity. As such they are addicted to their own mask. Every night that the vampire does not act on their mask they must roll humanity. A failed roll gives the vampire the Deprived condition (B&S: page 302) until the vampire gains willpower through their mask.
    The Kresnik also have a mortal enemy. The Posasti Rugasa, also known as the Kudlak, have a peculiar effect on the Kresnik. The Spectral Beast of the Kudlaks are considered a bane to Kresniks. That form can hurt them even if it is not fully materialized, and the damage is more intense when the Kresnik is using the Spectral Beast. The last part of the curse is that whenever a Kresnik embraces another there is a 1 in 4 chance that the new vampire will become a Nosferatu instead of a Daeva. If this happens, the vampire is instantly added to the Posasti Rugasa the next time they rise.
    History and Culture: The Republic of Rugasa became part of the Ottoman Empire in the 1400s. During this period there was a wealthy noble family that had two daughters. Azra, the elder daughter, was considered incredibly beautiful. Her sister, Rusa, however was not looked upon as highly. The two daughters both fell in love with a powerful merchant from the Ottoman Empire.
    The merchant turned out to be an influential Gangrel vampire within the Invictus located in the Ottoman Empire. He was sent to Rugasa in order to gain control of it for the vampiric Emperor who controlled more cities for longer than most Princes could control a small town. The merchant became aware of the influence that these two noble women could bring his court if he would have them join. He had two of his most trusted soldiers go into their home and embrace them. Azra was embraced by a Nosferatu, and Rusa by a Daeva.
    The merchant began to use the services of the two for political gains, but he did not treat them equally. While manipulating them he began to fall for Rusa, just as she planned. This caused a great divide between the two sisters. Within ten years they began to form political parties in the court. The merchant knew that if the Emperor found out about his city becoming chaotic that it would end poorly for him.
    The merchant exiled the two sisters far away from his city, but neither of them wanted anything to do with his order. For the first time in over a decade the two sisters worked together and diablerised him. In order to flee the city after their horrid crime, they had to slaughter several ancilla. Even while fleeing the city they began to feud, hating the other sister. By the time they found themselves set up in separate cities, their blood had both been tainted and changed by their mutual anger.
    They both started to develop powers that were reminiscent of that old merchant. Strangely though their own childer were not always from their own blood.
    Reputation: The Kresnik are most common in both Invictus and Lancea Sanctum. Both of these covenants appeal to the nature of Rusa who was devoutly religious and deeply interested in politics. They are significantly less interested in the other three covenants common throughout the world.
    The reputation that the Kresnik deal with the most, however, comes from their relationship to the Kudlak. When a Prince has a problem with a Kudlak within their city, they will go look for a Kresnik in order to solve the problem.
    Becoming: The Kresnik often view themselves as knights and warriors. Many of those that are embraced do so with high dots in combat skills and fighting style merits. The Kresnik are also frequently deeply ingrained in the social structure of the vampire community. Many of them have status merits as well as other merits that require them.
    Bloodline Gift: The Slayers gain access to a series of devotions that are unique to their bloodline. They get the first devotion, Spectral Beast, for free. These powers are known as White Beast.
    White Beast
    Spectral Beast: The Kresnik are known for slipping out of their own bodies and becoming a white animal and stalking the nights. By spending a willpower the vampire may remove their consciousness from their body. Their consciousness takes the form of a spectral white beast. While this is going on, their body is indistinguishable from a corpse. Their spectral beast takes on the form of any animal the vampire could take with Beast’s Skin. If the vampire has no dots in Protean, they still can keep one form for this ability. While in this form the vampire is able to use disciplines, but has an effective strength of 0 (even with the use of vigor) for affecting the world in mundane ways, with the exception of affecting other spectral entities in the material world (such as Strix and other users of Spectral Beast). They also cannot take damage except by banes and attacks that can affect ephemeral entities. Damage done by banes is upgraded, bashing becomes lethal, lethal becomes aggravated. If the spectral beast fills up on aggravated the vampire is forcibly snapped back into their body and enters torpor with all health boxes full of lethal damage. If something mundane would hurt the vampire, the material passes through the form as if it was smoke. The vampire still cannot move through walls or other material objects. If the vampire’s body is being harmed while in this form they can feel it, and still take wound penalties, but they can only put themselves back in their body by physically entering it again. The vampire cannot communicate via words, but can communicate as the animal normally would, such as body language and grunts.
    Grave Retreat: The vampire sometimes needs to immediately gain control of her body again. Other times, the spectral beast becomes too beaten and weak. With this devotion the vampire is able to spend 1 vitae in order to snap their will back into their body and dispel the spectral beast.
    Prerequisites: Protean 1
    Experience Cost: 1
    Fluid Form: The vampire has better control over their smoky spectral form. They can change the shape of their Spectral Beast into any predator, disease carrier, or parasite size 1 or bigger, even if they have not eaten one. This power only affects Spectral Beast, and has no influence on regular uses of Protean. Changing form in this way costs a point of willpower instead of the usual vitae.
    Prerequisites: Protean 3
    Experience Cost: 1
    Brief Strength: Despite the spectral beast's ephemeral nature, the creature can will itself into a material form, although only briefly. By spending 1 vitae, the vampire can make their form solid for a turn. This allows them to attack like a normal creature would, but it also makes them vulnerable to damage until their next turn. When the vampire is attacked by mundane weapons, treat the vampire's defense as 1 higher.
    Prerequisites: Vigor 3
    Experience Cost: 2
    Quick Jump: The spectral beast of the Kresnik is considered as fast as lightning. With this ability the vampire can spend 1 vitae to jump anywhere she can physically see. She cannot jump to a location that is shown through a screen, a picture, or even through a plate of glass. The vampire does not teleport, but normal restrictions of movement, such as height difference, fall damage, or dangerous obstacles, are ignored. This is an instant action.

    Prerequisites: Celerity 3
    Experience Cost: 2
    Hope: The Kresnik is commonly thought of as a creature that fights for good. While in the form of the Spectral Beast the Kresnik is able to impart hope within an ally. By spending a vitae in spectral beast form the vampire can give the bonded condition (GMC: Page 181) to another person.
    • Cost: 1 vitae
    • Presence+Animal Ken-Composure (if the target resists)
    • Action: Instant
    • Dramatic Failure: The target does not trust you. All attempts to influence it, even with disciplines, take a -2 dice penalty.
    • Failure: Nothing happens.
    • Success: Until your Spectral Beast and your ally part, your ally gains the bonded condition. This condition normally only affects animals, but in this case can affect a human or supernatural entity. This may still affect an animal.
    • Exceptional Success: The target is so reassured by your existence that they also gain a point of willpower.
    Prerequisites: Majesty 4
    Experience Cost: 2


    Posasti Rugasa

    Scourge of Rugasa

    There have been various sightings of a black cat running through the city of Dubrovnik. The rumors are saying that the monster waits for people to be alone. When someone thinks they are safe, a monster will walk through the wall.
    A butcher is walking home alone. He has heard the rumors, and was scared. A white wolf made the butcher feel hopeful and calm. Then a black cat appeared, climbing out of the wall.
    Parent Clan: Nosferatu
    Bloodline Disciplines: Nightmare, Obfuscate, Protean, Vigor
    Nicknames: Kudlak (Croatia), Stalkers or Soldiers (Neutral), Losers (Insult)
    Bloodline Bane: The monster within a Kudlak is just as vicious and inhuman as any other Nosferatu. They keep the Nosferatu clan bane. When in a social interaction with a human, treat the Stalker’s humanity as two lower. In addition, any failure for a presence or manipulation check is an automatic dramatic failure unless the Stalker is interacting with their touchstone or kindred.
    The Kudlak are frightful creatures fundamentally attached to what they have become. As such they are addicted to their own dirge. Every night that the vampire does not act on their dirge they must roll humanity. A failed roll gives the vampire the Deprived condition (B&S: page 302) until the vampire gains willpower through their dirge.
    The Kudlak also have a mortal enemy. The Cuvari Rugasa, also known as the Kresnik, have a peculiar effect on the Kudlak. The Spectral Beast of the Kresniks are considered a bane to Kudlaks. That form can hurt them even if it is not fully materialized, and the damage is more intense when the Kudlak is using the Spectral Beast. The last part of the curse is that whenever a Kudlak embraces another there is a 1 in 4 chance that the new vampire will become a Daeva instead of a Nosferatu. If this happens, the vampire is instantly added to the Cuvari Rugasa the next time they rise.
    History and Culture:
    The Republic of Rugasa became part of the Ottoman Empire in the 1400s. During this period there was a wealthy noble family that had two daughters. Azra, the elder daughter, was considered incredibly beautiful. Her sister, Rusa, however was not looked upon as highly. The two daughters both fell in love with a powerful merchant from the Ottoman Empire.
    The merchant turned out to be an influential Gangrel vampire within the Invictus located in the Ottoman Empire. He was sent to Rugasa in order to gain control of it for the vampiric Emperor who controlled more cities for longer than most Princes could control a small town. The merchant became aware of the influence that these two noble women could bring his court if he would have them join. He had two of his most trusted soldiers go into their home and embrace them. Azra was embraced by a Nosferatu, and Rusa by a Daeva.
    The merchant began to use the services of the two for political gains, but he did not treat them equally. While manipulating them he began to fall for Rusa, just as she planned. This caused a great divide between the two sisters. Within ten years they began to form political parties in the court. The merchant knew that if the Emperor found out about his city becoming chaotic that it would end poorly for him.
    The merchant exiled the two sisters far away from his city, but neither of them wanted anything to do with his order. For the first time in over a decade the two sisters worked together and diablerised him. In order to flee the city after their horrid crime, they had to slaughter several ancilla. Even while fleeing the city they began to feud, hating the other sister. By the time they found themselves set up in separate cities, their blood had both been tainted and changed by their mutual anger.
    They both started to develop powers that were reminiscent of that old merchant. Strangely though their own childer were not always from their own blood.
    Reputation: The Kudlak were given second billing within the Danse Macabre. After the Kresnik digged themselves deeply into the powers that control the Masquerade, the Kudlak found those willing to fight against them. This leads to the Kudlak frequently being part of The Circle of the Crone and the Carthians.
    Within the domains that need to find a way to deal with a Kresnik, the Princes go looking for a Kudlak. If anyone can destroy them, it is the Kudlak.
    Becoming: The Kudlak are hunters and predators. They often have high physical stats and potentially a fighting style merit. They also have a tendency to research and study phenomenon relating to and beyond the vampiric condition. They tend to have several mental merits, such as Library (B&S: Page 121).
    Bloodline Gift: The Stalkers gain access to a series of devotions that are unique to their bloodline. They get the first devotion, Spectral Beast, for free. These powers are known as Black Beast.
    Black Beast
    Spectral Beast: The Kudlak are known for slipping out of their own bodies and becoming a black animal and stalking the nights. By spending a willpower the vampire may remove their consciousness from their body. Their consciousness takes the form of a spectral black beast. While this is going on, their body is indistinguishable from a corpse. Their spectral beast takes on the form of any animal the vampire could take with Beast’s Skin. If the vampire has no dots in Protean, they still can keep one form for this ability. While in this form the vampire is able to use disciplines, but has an effective strength of 0 (even with the use of vigor) for affecting the world in mundane ways, with the exception of affecting other spectral entities in the material world (such as Strix and other users of Spectral Beast). They also cannot take damage except by banes and attacks that can affect ephemeral entities. Damage done by banes is upgraded: bashing becomes lethal, lethal becomes aggravated. If the spectral beast fills up on aggravated the vampire is forcibly snapped back into their body and enters torpor with all health boxes full of lethal damage. If something mundane would hurt the vampire, the material passes through the form as if it was smoke. The vampire still cannot move through walls or other material objects. If the vampire’s body is being harmed while in this form they can feel it, and still take wound penalties, but they can only put themselves back in their body by physically entering it again. The vampire cannot communicate via words, but can communicate as the animal normally would, such as body language and grunts.
    Grave Retreat: The vampire sometimes needs to immediately gain control of her body again. Other times, the spectral beast becomes too beaten and weak. With this devotion the vampire is able to spend 1 vitae in order to snap their will back into their body and dispel the spectral beast.
    Prerequisites: Protean 1
    Experience Cost: 1
    Fluid Form: The vampire has better control over their smoky spectral form. They can change the shape of their Spectral Beast into any predator, disease carrier, or parasite size 1 or bigger, even if they have not eaten one. This power only affects Spectral Beast, and has no influence on regular uses of Protean. Changing form in this way costs a point of willpower instead of the usual vitae.
    Prerequisites: Protean 3
    Experience Cost: 1
    Brief Strength: Despite the spectral beast's ephemeral nature, the creature can will itself into a material form, although only briefly. By spending 1 vitae, the vampire can make their form material for a turn. This allows them to attack like a normal creature would, but it also makes them vulnerable to damage until their next turn. When the vampire is attacked by mundane weapons, treat the vampire's defense as 1 higher.
    Prerequisites: Vigor 3
    Experience Cost: 2
    Ephemeral Phase: With this power the Kudlak is able to crawl through a wall or fly through the ceiling. By spending a point of vitae the vampire can move through a single surface. The material that can be moved through can only be a foot thick at most. Spending the vitae is an instant action, and moving through the wall is a movement action, meaning that phasing through a wall takes a whole turn. If the vampire ends their turn in the wall they take 1 lethal damage, and must spend another vitae in order to remove themselves from the surface.
    Prerequisites: Obfuscate 3
    Experience Cost: 2
    Weight of Sins: The Kudlak are masters of manipulation and are known for being able to destroy the interconnected lies that people use to stay socially competent. With this power the Kudlak is able to make someone aware of their own sins and feel the crushing weight of them.
    • Cost: 1 Vitae
    • Wits+Intimidate vs. Resolve+Blood Potency
    • Action: Instant and Contested
    • Dramatic Failure: The vampire realizes what they are doing and gain the Guilty condition (GMC: Page 182) until the end of the scene or confess their nature. Confessing their nature is often a breach of masquerade.
    • Failure: The vampire’s attempts prove fruitless. Nothing happens.
    • Success: The target is weakened in the mind and gains the Guilty condition until the end of the scene.
    • Exceptional Success: The pull is so powerful that the target feels a shaking of their entire worldview. The victim must roll to resist a breaking point at Humanity 5.
    Prerequisites: Nightmare 3
    Experience Cost: 2
    Last edited by TheDiabadass; 09-29-2014, 05:26 PM.

  • #2
    Fluid Form seems lacking.

    As for weaknesses, I don't like them. If you want to keep this Enemy stuff as a weakness, I'd suggest making each of the Spirit Forms a bane to the other Bloodline? And the rest to their common hatred of each other/long history bla bal? That way, they got the supernatural hatred between themselves, but it still leaves room for any kind of stories.

    As for suggested weaknesses: To keep to their dual nature they get a bane to substance? One gets Salt another can get something else?


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    • #3
      I though fluid form might be too powerful. The ability to shift into any of those types of animals is huge, especially if interacting with another spectral beast or using brief strength. The only other protean one I can think of is the ability to instantly dispel the form and return to consciousness.

      Im confused by the second note. A bane how? similar to the repulsion bane? and what do you mean by "And the rest to their common hatred of each other/long history bla bal? That way, they got the supernatural hatred between themselves, but it still leaves room for any kind of stories."

      Lastly, I don't dislike the idea of creating twin yet distinct banes, but salt seems so impersonal. To me it seems completely out of left field for the history and nature of these two bloodlines. Im kind of thinking of ways to make them opposites. Maybe Kresniks have frenzy resistance capped by humanity, and Kudlaks have it capped by 10-humanity or something similarly connected to high and low humanity.

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      • #4
        And in my opinion turning into those types of animals ain't that strong.

        Yes, I was suggesting a bane similar to Repulsion, however that mainly comes from moving through walls. Anyways, what I'm suggesting is, a bane which hurts the bloodline (or you get hurt by it, but it's essentially the same) instead of forcing behaviours onto them (frenzy). And fixing the behaviours by making sure that both of these have a common history and are likely to become enemies regardless.

        Agree on Salt being impersonal, I just took it since it's a common bane Your idea about having the banes as opposites seems interesting, tho I don't like caps on humanity. Especially since the banes sort of act harsher when you're low on humanity, having it no effect (or a small effect) when your humanity is high, seems.. strange.

        It should be that when their humanity get's lower, they have a hard time acting somehow, or are pushed to act somehow, and this "somehow" defines the difference. For one it might be that they frenzy more often, the other ones might have a harder time consuming blood, or using their powers.

        Trying to force them into "opposite banes" has a very huge chance of one of the two having no bane at all.

        (I'd say having your frenzy rolls capped by 10-humanity, is not much of a bane (or is a bane only for start of the vampire's life.. and with such a bane he'll quickly fall several levels down where it becomes a non-issue)


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        • #5
          What if the Kresnik is addicted to their mask, and the Kudlak is addicted to their dirge. So if you do not act on it during the night, you roll humanity. A failed roll gives you the deprived condition until you act on the mask/dirge.

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          • #6
            Sure, that seems a lot better


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            • #7
              Update the banes, as well as changed Fluid Form to Grave Retreat.

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              • #8
                At least I think that Fluid Form was thematically appropriate. The mechanics should be pinned down more properly tho, since it seemed a bit lackluster (as in too weak). And I do think we can have two of these devotions.

                Also, since some of the devotions mirror each other, perhaps one bloodline member can teach the other one the mirror-able ones? Of course that almost never happens.. but you know, having such duality might be interesting.


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                • #9
                  Yeah, I think they can teach each other. I wonder if I should explicitly state that. Also, are you saying that Fluid Form was better than Grave Retreat? If so, any ideas on how to make it less lackluster? Potentially even making it one experience cheaper would help.

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                  • #10
                    No, in my opinion, Grave Retreat is superb for what it does (Returns to body).
                    What I was saying is: Return Fluid Form. They both fit here.


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                    • #11
                      Have played with the idea of close but antagonic bloodlines in my games too - i basically used a fragment of Khaibit backstory about how the shadow powers of their founders came from battling an enemy priestess (of Seker i think) as excuse for a rival 'line that served the darkness as its hand, instead of turning its power against it as the Khaibit supposedly do. Sort of "Kindred Pure" to the "Kindred Forsaken" vibe of the Khaibit.

                      For the sake of supplement a "different but not quite so different after all" imagery/theme i gave the same disciplines but the Daeva as parent clan of the "Childer of Seker", because they can fit the Khaibit package just as well as the Mekhet.

                      Of late gave also toyed with the option of making it into something like Malkavia, Choronzon or Scourge as a more "corruptive power open for all" alternative.
                      Last edited by Baaldam; 09-29-2014, 03:48 PM.

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                      • #12
                        All of my bloodlines that receive a free devotion have been given 5 devotions total (which includes the free one, obviously) in order to mirror the Khaibit devotions given by Onyx Path for B&S. I guess that doesn't need to be a hard and fast rule, especially since Fluid Form is arguably the weakest and does not make them over powered. Will add it back in, but for an experience cheaper. I think I like it at that power level.

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                        • #13
                          The devotion list is not exhaustive and other Khaibit devotions might exist with more powers So, I see no need to try to get up to that number of devotions (or restrict oneself from getting writing up more). As long as they are properly priced they will be as tempting as normal non-bloodline devotions...


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                          • #14
                            Baaldam, that sounds really interesting. So, what all differences did they have? Did they have the same bloodline weakness (but obviously different Clan weaknesses)? Did they have the same complete package of disciplines or was it Daeva+Shadow Powers and Mekhet+Shadow Powers?

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by TheDiabadass View Post
                              Baaldam, that sounds really interesting. So, what all differences did they have? Did they have the same bloodline weakness (but obviously different Clan weaknesses)? Did they have the same complete package of disciplines or was it Daeva+Shadow Powers and Mekhet+Shadow Powers?
                              Yes, i was a lazy bastard and simply used Obtenebration and the Khaibit weakness, letting the clan weakness and peculiar devotions and story of each 'line play the "distorted mirror" of each other.

                              That and other stuff also served for quite some time make the Mekhet PC of my old group actually affraid of "embracing the dark" and becoming what he was supposed to be, as what references he could get on Obtenebration along the way were all of the worse kind - a lovecraftian cultist-style worshipper of Seker and the Outer Dark, tales of an elder kindred in Japan that became a monk in a effort to "contain the taint" of a battle centuries before against the "black angel of Amakusa" and much later a crazed cult that believed Nobunaga & Amakusa were incarnations of a "living avatar of the dark" that they were destined to incarnate in flesh to bring the turning of the Wheel of Ages, to be accomplished by striking a chosen child upon the moment of birth with a legendary spirit-slaying blade, the last iron feather. The fact he could almost hear the blade through his Auspex, like something in his blood called it, certainly didn't help any.

                              Fun, schlocky, gonzo game almost all out of a Helsing or Vampire Hunter D among other stuff. Dudes of Legend was sort of nostalgic in retrospect.

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