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  • Stressed Shapechanging

    How are you handling this in your games? It strikes me as a bit rough to force actions and expenditures on player characters, as well as pushing them into gauru at the first swing of a fist. And can a werewolf who's been pushed up to gauru choose to fall out under these rules (from page 96) when the timer runs out, or do they have to stick with it? Thanks!


    LFP: American Carnage (Werewolf: the Forsaken)

  • #2
    Originally posted by Verge View Post
    How are you handling this in your games?
    For us it was up to the players to keep in mind, occasionally reminded by the Storyteller.

    It strikes me as a bit rough to force actions and expenditures on player characters, as well as pushing them into gauru at the first swing of a fist.
    The idea is that werewolves are supposed to know how these things work. Obvious example, if you're a vampire, you don't go out to the beach to get a tan. If you're a werewolf, you don't hang around in dalu when you're out looking for a fight unless you're willing to outright slaughter people by turning gauru. Considering it's all about what your character wants to do, it's not really about forcing actions so much as having your characters desires be expressed.

    And can a werewolf who's been pushed up to gauru choose to fall out under these rules (from page 96) when the timer runs out, or do they have to stick with it? Thanks!
    It's hard to imagine many situations popping up that 'the timer' of gauru wouldn't make a significant dent in the stress of. But it does happen. If your character's still fighting and has decided they need to do something else then their perspective has changed and so has their 'goal' form, so they could shift out. Even if it's just something like 'ripping and tearing isn't solving this, we need some organization,' to lead you to hishu through alu.

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    • #3
      I think the problem with these rules is that they'd make more sense if the forms worked like they do in apocalypse.

      Like the bit about moving one stage "towards" a form each turn. When you shapeshift in Apocalypse you move through all the forms in order, and if you don't get enough sucesses you might not get as far as you intended. There's no such order in forsaken. You go straight from one to the other no matter where they sit on the line, so it doesn't actually make sense to go gradually.

      Also as written it sounds like if you try to run in hishu you'll end up in gauru and murder everyone before you reach urhan.

      And the bit about not being able to resist in a fight is, frankly, a bit dumb. Because it renders the ability to choose between spending an essence reflexively and taking a turn for free at harmony 2-3 pointless. The only time you'd spend the essence at that level is in a stressful situation where you don't have time to resist for free, which, by the book, you can't do.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by nofather View Post

        For us it was up to the players to keep in mind, occasionally reminded by the Storyteller.

        The idea is that werewolves are supposed to know how these things work. Obvious example, if you're a vampire, you don't go out to the beach to get a tan. If you're a werewolf, you don't hang around in dalu when you're out looking for a fight unless you're willing to outright slaughter people by turning gauru. Considering it's all about what your character wants to do, it's not really about forcing actions so much as having your characters desires be expressed.

        It's hard to imagine many situations popping up that 'the timer' of gauru wouldn't make a significant dent in the stress of. But it does happen. If your character's still fighting and has decided they need to do something else then their perspective has changed and so has their 'goal' form, so they could shift out. Even if it's just something like 'ripping and tearing isn't solving this, we need some organization,' to lead you to hishu through alu.
        Unplanned-for violence does break out, though, and the instincts kick in regardless of form. If you're at a protest and things start heading towards violence, how close does the danger have to get before you consider yourself stressed? And a werewolf would have to make a conscious choice to flee or hide to pop out of gauru willingly, which is a hella dangerous choice to make when fighting against something that can withstand that many turns of the war form already. Seems to me kuruth is locked into these rules if swift work is not made.

        Originally posted by Elfive
        And the bit about not being able to resist in a fight is, frankly, a bit dumb. Because it renders the ability to choose between spending an essence reflexively and taking a turn for free at harmony 2-3 pointless. The only time you'd spend the essence at that level is in a stressful situation where you don't have time to resist for free, which, by the book, you can't do.
        That seems to be for non-stressed scenes, if I'm reading it right. And even then if you're not in a stress sitch, you're also not in a turn-by-turn framework.

        So, I think I gotta houserule this enchilada. First of all, "stress" means a threat involving a packmate or touchstone, an enemy that won't use Down & Dirty if Gauru is assumed, or any threat of violence while the werewolf has an unhealed lethal wound or injury Tilt. Next, low-Harmony werewolves only have to make a choice not to change once a scene, but have to take on a Condition to avoid spending Essence, which is immediately resolved (without a Beat) the first time they can change. Mid-to-high Harmony werewolves need no changes, but any level of Harmony can choose to take the target form instead of intermediary shapes if it suits the player. Finally, running out of Gauru turns is an allowable opportunity to change, although it is still subject to Essence/action expenditure,


        LFP: American Carnage (Werewolf: the Forsaken)

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Verge View Post
          Unplanned-for violence does break out, though, and the instincts kick in regardless of form. If you're at a protest and things start heading towards violence, how close does the danger have to get before you consider yourself stressed?
          It's based upon what your character wants to do, so it's close enough that a desire has formed but an action hasn't been taken. Un-planned for events do occur, and you're not a human anymore, you're an apex predator with the spirit of the hunter inside you. You should be reacting somehow.

          And a werewolf would have to make a conscious choice to flee or hide to pop out of gauru willingly, which is a hella dangerous choice to make when fighting against something that can withstand that many turns of the war form already. Seems to me kuruth is locked into these rules if swift work is not made.
          To be fair you're throwing out a reasonable explanation to support your argument. Sure, if your opponent is able to shrug off gauru but hasn't killed you while doing so, and remains completely interested in chasing you and you don't have any sense when it comes to escaping or abilities to help and you decide, 'I must continue fighting,' then you can be locked in Kuruth, but considering the speed of the other forms, the ability of hishu to avoid notice, and the variety of Gifts and gifts characters have, you shouldn't be locked into Kuruth unless you want to or it makes sense for your character to be.

          Want to fight? Shift. Trying to resist? Shift back and the back and forth begins. If you let it slide or aren't of a Harmony where you can control yourself, then you go into gauru and deal with the problem. Is the problem too much to deal with? Because you have a variety of forms that are not just good at escaping through speed and punching through dimensions, but that can make you lost in a crowd or lock an opponent behind you.
          Last edited by nofather; 07-04-2017, 11:15 PM.

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          • #6
            This might be a stupid question, but does stressed shifting apply only to low-Harmony werewolves, or all werewolves?


            The 'e' is omitted on purpose and for stylistc reasons... I promise.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Aneas View Post
              This might be a stupid question, but does stressed shifting apply only to low-Harmony werewolves, or all werewolves?
              Yes, 3 or below.

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              • #8
                Huh, for some reason I was reading that as all werewolves. Now I feel silly.


                LFP: American Carnage (Werewolf: the Forsaken)

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