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Explain Werewolf the Forsaken to me... like I've never played it

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  • Explain Werewolf the Forsaken to me... like I've never played it

    I have actually not played it. I have played VtR, though... and I need a dummies guide to WtF, an overview... I've also played Werewolf the Apocalypse (so much so that I used to be able to run the game without any core book or supplement).

    Go?

  • #2
    You are the Wolf, and the Wolf must Hunt.

    Basically it’s that as a core belief but it is more detail. Basically as werewolves you are taking up the mantle from your god creator which your ancestors killed and thus you duty is around the policing and maintenance of the divide between the world of the Flesh and Spirit. Similarly you are part of both Flesh and Spirit so you would see a lot of trying to keep the dual sides of yourself in Harmony while trying to be the greatest predator you can be hunting all those who would try to upset the balance between the real world and the shadow. And ho boy that’s a lot. Like being a werewolf is like being on a constant war with at least 4 to 7 other sides that are all trying to kill you. A werewolf life certainly isn’t a calm one.


    .

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    • #3
      It is the wont of the world to consume itself, and you are wolves whose hunt changes the course of rivers.

      Less pithy breakdown to follow later.


      Resident Sanguinary Analyst
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      • #4
        The World

        Once upon a time, there was a primal paradise. Then the Firstborn killed their parent, the great spirit-god Wolf, and the death howl brought down the Gauntlet, dividing the world into the Flesh, which you know well, and the Spirit, populated by ephemeral entities called spirits. The Uratha, werewolves, are the distant children of a union between Wolf and an even greater goddess, Luna. (This lineage isn't a big deal in the game, but I mention it because it's the justification for shapeshifting.)

        Today, the world of Flesh is overrun by human civilization. It's not a bad thing, just a true thing. Across the Gauntlet, the world of Spirit is a pale echo of that former paradise, where spirits scavenge greedily for the emotional energies, called Essence, that human beings create.

        You Play

        A Uratha. A creature that is two--no five, no wait, three, who knows!, who cares!--things at once. Your Primal Urge calls you to the ancient mission of Wolf: to choose a prey, to Hunt it down, to howl your dominance over all who can hear it. Your body is your instrument: a mercurial flesh that expresses itself as needed for the task you set before it. Run? Blend? Rend? Fight? Kill? There's a Form for it.

        It is not your only instrument. The wolf instinct understands territory, too. This is your land, and you shape it as you see fit. It's not easy to do, but it's yours. Are humans feeling too much fear at the old playground because of a tragedy a few months back? Lifts their spirits and turn it into a place of joy. Are spirits pushing the humans into being overly reckless in hopes of making them generate the Essence they want? Chase those spirits down and beat them into submission until they understand their place. Is someone screwing with your pack, your family? Find them. Wind them. Bring them down into ignominy.

        The player chooses an Auspice: their raw instincts of expressing dominance rather than understanding balance, howling truth to the world rather than skulking around looking for the perfect kill. The Uratha chooses their Tribe: a philosophy-of-life in which you point at a particular danger in the world and call it the biggest deal, the thing which you understand down to your bones and know how to kill best, in which you honor a Firstborn as the pinnacle expression of your worldview.

        Harmony

        W:tF is about Harmony. How do you balance your life as a furry killing machine against the mundanity of the sheep? Sure, your high school sweetheart's back in town and is still super cute, but how do you fit in a long walk on the beach between nightly fights to the death in back alleys? Your mom's been sick and the hospital bills are hell to pay, but there's been spirit problems in the warehouse inside your territory and someone's going to contest your claim if you don't deal with them. You've got a mission: vile ratmen in the sewers chewing their way through the Gauntlet and letting all sorts of nasty stuff through, but your packmate says no, no, there's this guy possessed by a spirit and he's the real problem we gotta deal with: you gotta sort that out, get your pack on the same page: do you compromise or do you draw a hard line? The new development going up on 8th Street is throwing the whole ecology of the region out of whack. The wrong spirits are moving in and it's breaking everything; what the hell do you do about that? Who can you call on to help fix it? How can you adjust and adapt when you can't?

        Anyways, that's my overview. There's an array of varied antagonists, a neat "Biggest Bad" framing device in the idigam, a minor template of Wolf-Blooded, animist-style mystical stuff, the usual slate of wacky-creepy-weird that goes into a CofD gameline, etc. Is there anything in particular you want to know about?


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        • #5
          Compared to Vampire, is there politicking or not so much?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by LimeFlavored View Post
            Compared to Vampire, is there politicking or not so much?
            By default, no, but I would say there can be if you want there to be. The politics of territory are important to Werewolf and the spirit courts of the Shadow are rife with possibilities for intrigue.


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            • #7
              Werewolf politicking is very much a thing, but also very different.

              Werewolves - outside of extraordinary situations - don't have anything like a Prince or a Court to answer to. Each pack has it's own territory that it runs how it wants. Thus politics in Forsaken comes in two primary flavors: external negotiations and internal politics. External negotiations (and these are werewolves that can run the gamut of actual attempts at peaceful solutions or beating the shit out of the other side until they relent) deals with everything from neighboring packs to keeping the local spirit courts in check. Gangs are, of course, a common analogy since gangs don't answer to some higher authority like vampires do, and how each gang relates to neighboring gangs is a matter of personalities, history, and so on.

              Internally, Forsaken packs as of 2e are much larger than either Apocalypse or Forsaken 1e had them be. While the core number of werewolves is roughly the same, Wolf-blooded and humans can be part of packs now (and more things potentially). And not just as hangers on, but as spiritually protected and impacted members of the pack. But larger groups - especially ones with inherent power disparities - develop their own internal political structures and struggles.

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              • #8
                I would add more points to Werewolf politicking - in 2E of WtF there was added idea of Protectorates, that are large alliances of packs to defend common Territory region against particular, hard Prey ( various enemies of wolves ). Most of the time, those alliances break in few decades at most, but there are canonical settings with semi-extensive Protectorates ( like modern Bristol or WHOLE OF ROMAN EMPIRE! ) that have various positions, something like oligarchic Domain in VtR - without werewolf 'Prince' but with Alpha Pack of region.

                Also, Elodoth Auspice was somehow re-written as Judges, Negotiators AND Manipulators - so they are good splat for plotting players.

                And we have all the Tribe, Lodges and Pack constant conflicts of interest in all characters.

                So there is place for higher politics, if one wants it in WtF games.
                Last edited by wyrdhamster; 10-07-2018, 07:13 AM.


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                • #9
                  Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                  I would add more points to Werewolf politicking - in 2E of WtF there was added idea of Protectorates, that are large alliances of packs to defend common Territory region against particular, hard Prey ( various enemies of wolves ). Most of the time, those alliances break in few decades at most, but there are canonical settings with semi-extensive Protectorates ( like modern Bristol or WHOLE OF ROMAN EMPIRE! ) that have various positions, something like oligarchic Domain in VtR - without werewolf 'Prince' but with Alpha Pack of region.

                  Also, Elodoth Auspice was somehow re-written as Judges, Negotiators AND Manipulators - so they are good splat for plotting players.

                  And we have all the Tribe, Lodges and Pack constant conflicts of interest in all characters.

                  So there is place for higher politics, if one wants it in WtF games.
                  This is what I was hoping to find out... I'll start reading the 2e core book and figure out what I actually need to know for what I'm planning on doing.

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                  • #10
                    Another part of politics, the idigram can make tribes VERY desperate, the idigram called the false father gets pure so ticked they may actually JOIN your pack to fight him.

                    The supplement The Pack also says that in very desperate situations, like powerful shartha, can result in alliances with claimed. It notes the that the resulting fallout will have packs REALLY mad at you, making for some good conflict

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by LimeFlavored View Post
                      This is what I was hoping to find out... I'll start reading the 2e core book and figure out what I actually need to know for what I'm planning on doing.
                      An excerpt from the forthcoming Shunned By The Moon:

                      Werewolf: The Forsaken as a political game? Hell yes! Werewolves come from human backgrounds and upbringing and carry within them cooperative social instincts of wolf and human.


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                      WoD | Changing Breeds, Umbra, Book of the Wyrm, Shattered Dreams | CofD | Werewolf: The Forsaken 2nd ed, Idigam Anthology, The Pack, Demon Storyteller's Guide, Hurt Locker, Dark Eras Companion, Beast Player's Guide, Deviant: The Renegades, Night Horrors: Shunned by the Moon, Mummy: The Curse 2nd ed | The Trinity Continuum Æon, Æon Æxpansion, Aberrant

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