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  • #31
    1. Orbitals are really cool and I want to play one
    2. I just had the idea for the first change in space, but then immediately realized how utterly screwed litrally everyone there would be. I don't think even werewolves can survive that.

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    • #32
      It is some cool stuff (especially the hint that the idigam may be simply tribes of Uratha which has lived on their mother's surface), but the fact they care called Orbitals only makes me think "Oh my god the quantum mechanics homework which I try to forget that I have to do!". Still, cool stuff.


      My Homebrew Signature

      "And all our knowledge is, Ourselves to know"- An Essay on Man

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      • #33
        Seven Red Years
        Either Luna has a bizarre sense of humour, or something has found a way to hijack the power of the Change.

        The vast bulk of Uratha undergo the First Change with the power of the Moon coursing through them. Luna's influence triggers the latent Essence channels within the new werewolf's spirit to ignite the spark of the Auspice and set their flesh ablaze with transformation; it is the Moon's touch that sets brands of Renown crawling and ripping through their being. Even the reputed ability of certain Pure ritemasters to shroud nusuzul from the Moon's touch likely only stifles and suffocates the Auspice; the Change is still the result of Luna, even if it is immediately mutilated by the Anshega. But, from time to time, stories arise of werewolves who were never touched by the Moon - not due to Pure antics, but because Luna never played a part in their creation. One thread of such stories refers to something called the Seven Year Curse.

        Unlike the Change, the Curse does not rely on the victim having possessed the latent inheritance of Wolf and Moon in their flesh and soul. Rather, it is inflicted on its bearers due to their actions as humans. A sufferer commits a 'crime' of some sort - something that is significantly in breach of the social and cultural mores of the society in which they live. This crime is never petty and minor, but it doesn't need to be excessively horrific either - it is an act of significant vice and immorality rather than necessarily being one of an extreme. The sufferer feels at least some guilt over it, and likely a great deal indeed; anyone who genuinely feels no remorse over what they've done will not be affected. Obviously, these parameters could apply to the majority of crimes committed all round the world on a daily basis, yet the globe is not buried in a heap of cursed werewolves.

        This is because the Curse relies on an instigator, a middleman that directly brings the Curse to bear on the very unlucky few. In each instance, the human encounters a being who challenges them on their crime; a strange old woman who somehow knows what they did, a cold-eyed man who doorsteps them and tells them they have a choice to make, a horrific creature that stalks them in the shadows and whispers their fate. Who or what these beings are, how they know about the crime, and why they do what they do is not yet clear; at least one Forsaken shaman believes they're hapless nearby pawns literally hijacked by the power behind the curse, forced to act and say the things they do like actors from a script. Several loremasters believe actual demonic forces may be at work and blame Bale Hounds or the Maeljin.

        The instigator declares the victim cursed for their deeds, or offers a deal - giving an opportunity to take on a punishment to make amends for their actions, although the exact nature of what it will be is never spelled out clearly. If an offer, and the victim rejects it, they are left alone only to perish soon after in brutally karmic circumstances. After this exchange, the instigator departs and is not seen again.

        ​Shortly afterwards, the victim's life begins to descend into a Kafkaesque nightmare, culminating in the First Change.

        A Cursed werewolf does not have an Auspice or any of the associated benefits; they bear the same aggravated bane of silver as a Pure, but also an additional bane which is always a local plant or timber - usually one with strong folkloric associations such as mistletoe, wolfsbane or ash. The werewolf does possess a remarkably strong affinity for rites, starting with an additional 12 dots of rites gleaned just through innate understanding of the symbols in the world, and purchases new rites with a discount of 1 Experience (to a minimum of 1). Some Cursed possess rites entirely unknown to wider Uratha society, simply picked up from their affinity for the laws that tie Flesh and Shadow together.

        Cursed also suffer from unlikely and surreal circumstances even by the standards of werewolves. They suffer a -2 penalty to all Harmony rolls and any rolls to resist gaining the Madness Condition, on top of any other penalties that may be applied, and once per story a failure inevitably devolves into a dramatic failure in a way that is bizarre, narratively punishing, or involves nightmarish human activity that the humans themselves fail to be troubled by for incomprehensible reasons. However, Cursed gain the rote action quality on dealings with any beings suffering the Madness Condition - although they won't themselves have any additional insight into why they are so successful - and once per story, when a human being in a Cursed's presence regains Willpower in accordance with a Virtue or Vice, the Cursed also regains the same amount of Willpower. Once a week, when actively helping a human being indulge a Virtue or a Vice, the Cursed can gain a single point of Essence. The Cursed can instinctively sense if a human being possesses the same Vice that the Cursed did as a human, but possesses no such capacity in relation to their Virtue.

        ​Only Red Wolf will accept a totem bond to a Cursed werewolf; no other Tribal totem will embrace them, and therefore the Cursed can only join the Iron Masters (should they choose to join the Forsaken at all). Some Pure see a Cursed's lack of Auspice as a blessing, and revere them as holy for being untouched by Luna's tyranny. This is usually short-lived, however, as the Pure Firstborn will reject any attempts by a Cursed to join a Pure Tribe and, as a result, they usually end up decrying Cursed as not being true werewolves at all - instead believing them to be pale simulacra mocking the Uratha, a blasphemous attempt to parody werewolves by whatever unholy force has spawned them.

        For obvious reasons, most Cursed remain isolated from Forsaken culture. Each has either explicitly been told they are cursed or that they are undergoing a punishment to balance their crimes and, while there's good reason not to just trust whatever force put those words in an instigator's mouth, there's not a lot else to go on. Forsaken myths about Pangaea and veneration of Luna seem remote - the Moon has no particular interest in the Cursed and Lunes pay them no real heed. Cursed lean towards interpreting their condition through the lens of whatever major religions or philosophies hold sway in their human cultures of origin, so usually believe they are either cursed by demonic forces or have been given a second chance at making amends by holy forces.

        ​The thing is, the Seven Year Curse is called that for good reason. After seven years have passed, the Curse lifts. On the dot, seven years later, the victim returns to being a mundane human being. In a few brief moments, their supernatural nature purges from their being; Essence pours from their orifices, flesh dances and writhes one last time and then... they have ceased to be a werewolf. The Cursed still retains their memories. They know what it was to be​ a werewolf, to command the power of the spirit world, to stalk impossible landscapes and see beyond the world's veil. But it is all gone now, torn away in a moment. Former Cursed aren't even immune to Lunacy. It can't be reversed; they will never undergo a natural Change later in life, and they cannot be turned into Wolf-Blooded even by dramatically failing a Lunacy roll.

        ​Some Cursed know they have seven years, either due to being told by their instigator or encountering an Uratha loremaster who has put some of the puzzle together. Knowing that the state has a limited lifespan can lead to frantic, growing desperation as the end draws nigh - some Cursed don't want to go back to normality, to relinquish the sheer power and control of the werewolf state and to slide the undreamt-of worlds back behind the façade of the day-to-day Flesh. For others, it's a lifeline, desperate to escape the bizarre narrative that chases them during their curse or the knowledge that their sentence will, one day, be up.

        There is one last wrinkle to the tale. Occasionally, a Cursed retains their control over Pack Rites after the end of the Curse, able to serve as a ritemaster in the same way as some Wolf-Blooded and Claimed can. It's not clear why this happens; it may be linked to some sort of coming to terms with their guilt or overcoming the vices that drove them to their 'crime' in the first place, but obviously former Cursed are not themselves reliable sources on whether or not they feel they 'paid their price'. It may be a result of achieving and maintaining balanced Harmony for long periods of time, which the Cursed find especially difficult to achieve. For now, it remains a mystery.

        Most Cursed die during their seven years. The few survivors usually end up dead due to no longer possessing the strength of an Uratha when old enemies come calling; most actively seek obscurity for their own safety, with a few successfully peddling their knowledge and experience as minor occult dabblers or middlemen. Bale Hounds seem to have a particular interest in former Cursed that they encounter, which presumably ends unpleasantly for the now-humans.

        For most Uratha, the Seven Years Curse remains just a story, if even that. The Curse is levied very rarely and the phenomenon is global in its reach; there's no clear pattern to how, why and where it is brought to bear. Six of the Firstborn have nothing to say on the Cursed. Death Wolf, when petitioned for wisdom, stated that the Curse is a transaction - shifting a mantle of cursed power onto the victim not as a punishment but in exchange for some sort of balancing of the world's scales that would otherwise befall the victim directly. Red Wolf, the only Firstborn to embrace the Cursed, considers them lost children, and reminds those seeking its knowledge that not every player in a game can necessarily see all the pieces on the gameboard, or indeed all the other players at the table.


        - Chris Allen
        Freelance Writer, Deviant: the Renegade / The Pack / Dark Eras / Forsaken 2nd Edition / Idigam Anthology / Awakening 2nd Edition / Trinity Aeon / And more besides...

        ​Like my work? Feel like helping me stay supplied with tea? Check out my Patreon

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        • #34
          It's a real nice option for people who want to play ghost wolves, it definitely offers a unique experience. But even if you want to go Forsaken there's a lot of things you can do with it, the sheer mystery involved.

          The Red in Seven Red Years makes me think Red Wolf or maybe Mars or Mercury, though those doesn't seem to fit the other associations.

          Interesting.

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          • #35
            Ohhhh I really like those! I prefer that version of the Cursed than the one presented in the Chronicler's Guide. So the instigators take away the upcoming doom of the victim, and give the First Change instead? I wonder if the reason that the Curse last for no more than 7 years comes from some deal with Luna (which would otherwise may end up with a very angry moon goddess, and I don't think even the Maeljin want to anger her), or because the power of the stolen doom is consumed by whatever the instigators are after the period pass. Still, really cool. In an alternative setting, I may make the Cursed as a constant state, and all Bale Hounds being made out of Cursed (or at least make it as a rumor). You know, just to shake things up.


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            • #36
              That's interesting and cool. I'd never personally play one, but they are interesting and I'm sure some people would make absurdly great characters out of it.

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              • #37
                I don't know. I think I could see it. If you wanted to be an Iron Master, or ghost wolf, you have a nice leg up. You do lose the auspice gift but I like the rote action quality on dealing with people with Madness (the extra rites and rare rites is a huge plus). Most games I've played or run haven't taken place over a period of more than 7 years, so the ending might not come into play, at least on the forefront, if you knew about it it seems like it would be a great drive.

                It's a dream for template stackers. You can have your ex-werewolf who is now a vampire and trying to reform his abilities into those reminiscent of his past power. Or Awakens and tries to find out why it happened.
                Last edited by nofather; 01-12-2018, 03:20 PM.

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                • #38
                  I mean i get that, and Iron Masters are my favorite Tribe, but personally it isnt for me. (mind you I think it's an amazing option and i'd love to see what other people can do with it.)

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by nofather View Post
                    The Red in Seven Red Years makes me think Red Wolf or maybe Mars or Mercury, though those doesn't seem to fit the other associations.
                    I mean, there's a pretty definite association I can point at for a phenomenon associated with vice, demons, enigmatic strangers, plant-based banes, ritual magic, the color red, the number seven, cities, humans, and curses, but it's not a celestial body so much as a very broadly-manifested open mystery.

                    It just gives off a certain viibe, y'know?


                    Resident Sanguinary Analyst
                    Currently Consuming: Changeling: the Lost 1e

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                    • #40
                      Huh, I hadn't thought of that. It's always stayed categorized in Vampire to me, even the Maeljin influence seemed like a reach, with Werewolf's 9 sins rather than 7.

                      Good catch.

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by nofather View Post
                        It's a dream for template stackers. You can have your ex-werewolf who is now a vampire and trying to reform his abilities into those reminiscent of his past power. Or Awakens and tries to find out why it happened.
                        Oooooooooo... that could be interesting. Yoink!

                        This is very cool. I hope it makes it way into Werewolf's next Night Horrors book. I'm very curious what the Eaters of the Dead, Lodge of Apollo, and the Mourners would make of the Cursed, since they are all Ghost Wolf heavy lodges. Or how the Cursed would be treated in Barsa while right under Fenris-Ur's nose for that matter.
                        Last edited by Second Chances; 01-12-2018, 07:04 PM.


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                        • #42
                          Cool stuff so far.

                          For the FIIIIIIIVE POOOOUUUUNDS OF MEAT! I kind of hope Acro just puts up, like, five photos of steak tartare that he made.


                          Sean K.I.W. Steele, Freelance Writer
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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                            Cool stuff so far.

                            For the FIIIIIIIVE POOOOUUUUNDS OF MEAT! I kind of hope Acro just puts up, like, five photos of steak tartare that he made.
                            I'd do five ephemeral pieces of corpus for that.

                            Acrozatarim What makes tidal changes different from regular changes?

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Malus View Post

                              Acrozatarim What makes tidal changes different from regular changes?
                              ​Only that the tide-born experiences the greater level of mental clarity and peace during the First Change; no lasting mechanical effects beyond that, except for the cultural expectations placed on someone who has had a Change that is seen as 'special'.

                              ​I thought of maybe going with something like starting at Harmony 6 rather than 7 but I couldn't match it with a drawback that felt satisfying, so I figured I'd go with it being an unusual but not mechanically-impacting Change; that way it serves as a good comparison next to the genuinely weirder Changes, like Orbitals, the Seven Year Curse, and some of the stuff yet to come :P


                              - Chris Allen
                              Freelance Writer, Deviant: the Renegade / The Pack / Dark Eras / Forsaken 2nd Edition / Idigam Anthology / Awakening 2nd Edition / Trinity Aeon / And more besides...

                              ​Like my work? Feel like helping me stay supplied with tea? Check out my Patreon

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                              • #45
                                As an inverse of the Orbitals and extension of the Tideborn do you think anything special would happen to those rare First Changes taking place literally under the sea (f anything)? When you're manning a submarine you tend to be under for long stretches of time (months), and I imagine various explorers and scientists do the same. Likely rarer than an Orbital, but farther from the moon than a Tideborn.

                                Having spent a lot of time at the coast and on boats I'm pretty curious how it affects major splats, or how they affect it, and it seems like Werewolf has hinted about the strangeness of the depths, where in some cases the Shadow is probably as strange and alien as outer space.
                                Last edited by nofather; 01-12-2018, 07:43 PM.

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