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WtF Homebrew Merits

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  • WtF Homebrew Merits

    So I started a new thread titled "Miscellaneous Homebrew/Fanmade Merits". Then I realized that all the Merits that I'd come up with were connected to Werewolf: The Forsaken.
    So I'm reposting the one Merit that I posted on the first thread here & adding the rest of them.

    Pied Piper
    Prerequisite: Human
    Effect: You can make the Hosts dance to your whims & desires. Choose one variety of shartha (rats, spiders, wolves, termites, etc.), this variety of shartha will now obey your every command to the best of its abilities.
    The simpler the commands you give, the less they have to think about when carrying out the orders. However, the simpler the commands the more possibilities for them to be misinterpreted.
    Drawback: The variety of shartha that you can command finds itself drawn to you, without knowing why. If you don't know why this is a drawback, then time you might need to familiarize with the natural habits of different kinds of shartha.

  • #2
    "Anti-Host"
    Prerequisite: Human
    Effect: You cannot be possessed by a shartha or used by one to turn into a hybrid.
    Drawback: Doesn't mean you're safe from them.

    Spider-Child
    Prerequisite: Human
    Effect: You have a strange connection to the azlu. Your very presence causes the local Gauntlet to thicken slightly.

    Rat-Kin
    Prerequisite: Human
    Effect: You have a strange connection to the beshilu. You are immune to the diseases that gather in the presence of the Rat Host.

    Comment


    • #3
      Krat05 you have a good ability to come up with ideas, but these merits and such that you post are practically useless without considering the mechanics and costs around them. They also tend to be very black and white. ‘You can do this X overpowered thing, no further detail.’

      I think they’d be more useful to the Forsaken community if you fleshed them out, gave some background about where and why they exist, what their mechanics are, and what any drawbacks mean. ‘Doesn’t mean you’re safe from them’ is not a drawback, just a statement.

      Take a look at the format in WtF 2e. See the level of detail in their effect descriptions, and how drawbacks work when they have them.
      Last edited by Bunyip; 04-23-2020, 10:33 PM.


      Writer. Developer. World of Darkness | Chronicles of Darkness | The Trinity Continuum

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Bunyip View Post
        Krat05 you have a good ability to come up with ideas, but these merits and such that you post are practically useless without considering the mechanics and costs around them. They also tend to be very black and white. ‘You can do this X overpowered thing, no further detail.’

        I think they’d be more useful to the Forsaken community if you fleshed them out, gave some background about where and why they exist, what their mechanics are, and what any drawbacks mean. ‘Doesn’t mean you’re safe from them’ is not a drawback, just a statement.

        Take a look at the format in WtF 2e. See the level of detail in their effect descriptions, and how drawbacks work when they have them.
        Thank you for the feedback, I'll do my best to fix them up so that they work better.

        Comment


        • #5
          Yeah you've been really creative here.

          Comment


          • #6
            "Anti-Host" (••)
            Prerequisite: Human
            Effect: An unusual quality of your being renders you unable to be possessed by a shartha. They can inhabit your body, but ultimately you remain in control the whole time. The situation where a shartha inhabits you is also, non-fatal.
            Drawback: Any shartha who learns of this quality develops unwavering hostility to your existence, which normally, but not always, leads to it trying to kill you.

            ● So this is a (hopefully) fixed version of the previously posted Merit by the same name.
            ● The hatred the Hosts feel is not natural. It has a supernatural element resulting from whatever interaction the shartha in question has with you & a weird energy given off by you as a result of this Merit that has the only effect of stirring up the hatred.
            ● At the end of the Merit's drawback it states that the drawback does not always result in the shartha trying to kill you. If you're wondering what other results can come about, it could decide to gaslight you, inflict psychological torture, inflict physical torture, etc. As long as it results in harm towards the one with the "Anti-Host" Merit it works.

            "Anti-Host Blood" (••• or •••••)
            Prerequisite: Anti-Host; Human
            Effect: Your blood, saliva, & the rest of your physical body is violently toxic to the Hosts. Any shartha that takes in part of your biological matter (whether by consumption, injection, or other) becomes ill or starts dying, depending on how much it took in.
            Drawback: You are on some level connected to the all of your biological matter & can feel when a shartha becomes ill from it. You can become Addicted to this sensation, & the withdrawals are vicious & severe.

            ● This Merit is rare. Really rare. If you got 100 people with the "Anti-Host"Merit in a room together, I figure only one would have the "Anti-Host Blood" Merit or have the potential to have the "Anti-Host Blood" Merit. And I'm pretty convinced that there probably isn't a hundred people with the "Anti-Host" Merit living at once. Not because of some mystical energy that keeps there from being that many alive at once, but more just something statistical. With this in mind, anyone with the "Anti-Host Blood" Merit is going to find it very difficult to live under the radar if they're not careful.

            One final word. For anyone who's wondering why I put quotation marks around the names of these two Merits, it's because I don't actually see these as the proper names for the Merits, they're just placeholders until better names can be produced.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Krat05 View Post
              "Anti-Host" (••)
              Prerequisite: Human
              Effect: An unusual quality of your being renders you unable to be possessed by a shartha. They can inhabit your body, but ultimately you remain in control the whole time. The situation where a shartha inhabits you is also, non-fatal.
              Drawback: Any shartha who learns of this quality develops unwavering hostility to your existence, which normally, but not always, leads to it trying to kill you.

              ● So this is a (hopefully) fixed version of the previously posted Merit by the same name.
              ● The hatred the Hosts feel is not natural. It has a supernatural element resulting from whatever interaction the shartha in question has with you & a weird energy given off by you as a result of this Merit that has the only effect of stirring up the hatred.
              ● At the end of the Merit's drawback it states that the drawback does not always result in the shartha trying to kill you. If you're wondering what other results can come about, it could decide to gaslight you, inflict psychological torture, inflict physical torture, etc. As long as it results in harm towards the one with the "Anti-Host" Merit it works.
              Good effort. I think there are still some Areas for clarification and questions that need answering for this to work. My first comment is that if you need three dot points to explain your merit, you’ve not done the job writing the merit. Make the description complete without these.

              Second point is that this doesn’t metaphysically work with Hosts. Hosts aren’t spirits, they don’t possess people. Hosts are physical representations of the greater being that resemble animals. They physically enter the human victim’s body and devour part of their flesh to take control. Azlu eat the brain, Beshilu eat the heart, other hosts eat whatever. How does a human become ‘immune’ to being eaten by a carnivorous creature just by having a merit?

              Let’s look at the next part. ‘They can inhabit your body, but ultimately you remain in control...’ How? You’re either suffering brain damage or dead from lack of heart. Let’s assume something magic in the human makes this work. What’s the end game? The Host shard isn’t happy because it’s not in control, and the human can’t really do anything about it because death is the alternative to removing the rat burrowed where your heart was before he ate it or having cranial surgery to dig the spider out of your excised brain tissue. Give that some thought.

              Next, what’s the outcome? Just a human with a shard hanging out, or does the human start to develop Host-like powers that they control and the shard doesn’t? This needs to be explained.

              Who’s taking this? It’s limited to human only, sure, so why are we focusing on this Host-immune human in a WtF game? If it’s intended as a MacGuffin for the players, it doesn’t need a Merit, just have the NPC have this mysterious immunity. If it’s intended for a player’s character, who is playing a human surrounded by werewolves? What’s the audience here?

              The cost. Assuming you do have a human character that this applies to, 2 dots for blanket immunity to something that preys on humans is way too cheap. Take a look at other 2-dot human merits. You can ask a slightly inconvenient favour from a group and they’ll probably do it. You have some paperwork for a fake ID. You can find bars and get invited to parties. You have some fame within a region. You get +2 dice to resist supernatural mental effects. Etc.
              None of these are blanket immunity to Hosts. This should be at least 3 dots if the human gains minimal benefit from it, and 5 dots if the human can control any Host powers.

              The drawback. Hosts don’t like it still isn’t much of a drawback. Your explanatory notes suggest this is a supernatural element that provokes the dislike, sure. You give off a weird energy. Okay, so the life expectancy of a character with this merit in an area where they’re likely to be subjected to Host possession is pretty low. Other shards tend to be around shards, so when one burrows into flesh it can’t control and the others feel a wave of revulsion, they simply tear the immune host apart. Job done. Minimal effort from the Hosts. The human might go on the run but Hosts can probably track the weird energy. The bit where they ‘normally, but not always’ try to kill you. Meh, throwaway line isn’t particularly helpful.

              Perhaps a better drawback would be that although the human is still in control, he begins mutating just like a Host would. Sure, he still has a human mind, but he starts to look like a bloated spider being with vestigial extra legs growing from his torso. Or has rat-like features and teeth that don’t stop growing. Good luck convincing the Hunters in Darkness that you’re special and human and not a threat and shouldn’t be murdered just because a rat ate your heart.


              Writer. Developer. World of Darkness | Chronicles of Darkness | The Trinity Continuum

              Comment


              • #8
                An updated version of my Spider-Child Merit.

                Spider-Child (• or ••)
                Prerequisite: Human
                Effect: Your mere presence causes the Gauntlet to thicken, at a fraction of the rate that the azlu can manage it.
                Drawback: You have no control over this ability. You might not even know of its existence, going through life with a sense of listlessness & apathy.

                ● Despite the downsides of this Merit, Uratha can find great use of someone with it, maneuvering them so that they are positioned to thicken the Gauntlet where it needs thickening & potentially closing holes in it.

                I plan to put up the Rat-Kin Merit again, just as soon as I find a suitable drawback. This is also the first of a series of Merits I'm making that I call the "Host Association" Merits (name might need work). What links them all together is an implication of some connection to one of the Hosts, hopefully a different one in each case.
                I currently have one other ready Merit in this category:

                Wolf-Scarred (• to •••••)
                Prerequisite: Human; have to have survived being attacked by the Adarusharu, leaving scars
                Effect: Wield fear influence. The more dots you have in this Merit the more you can do with this.
                Drawback: Whichever one you choose, it grows more severe the more dots in this Merit you have.
                ● The scarring you got hurts, slowing movement.
                ● You are automatically assumed to be involved in criminal activity. Only negative applications.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bunyip View Post

                  Good effort. I think there are still some Areas for clarification and questions that need answering for this to work. My first comment is that if you need three dot points to explain your merit, you’ve not done the job writing the merit. Make the description complete without these.

                  Second point is that this doesn’t metaphysically work with Hosts. Hosts aren’t spirits, they don’t possess people. Hosts are physical representations of the greater being that resemble animals. They physically enter the human victim’s body and devour part of their flesh to take control. Azlu eat the brain, Beshilu eat the heart, other hosts eat whatever. How does a human become ‘immune’ to being eaten by a carnivorous creature just by having a merit?

                  Let’s look at the next part. ‘They can inhabit your body, but ultimately you remain in control...’ How? You’re either suffering brain damage or dead from lack of heart. Let’s assume something magic in the human makes this work. What’s the end game? The Host shard isn’t happy because it’s not in control, and the human can’t really do anything about it because death is the alternative to removing the rat burrowed where your heart was before he ate it or having cranial surgery to dig the spider out of your excised brain tissue. Give that some thought.

                  Next, what’s the outcome? Just a human with a shard hanging out, or does the human start to develop Host-like powers that they control and the shard doesn’t? This needs to be explained.

                  Who’s taking this? It’s limited to human only, sure, so why are we focusing on this Host-immune human in a WtF game? If it’s intended as a MacGuffin for the players, it doesn’t need a Merit, just have the NPC have this mysterious immunity. If it’s intended for a player’s character, who is playing a human surrounded by werewolves? What’s the audience here?

                  The cost. Assuming you do have a human character that this applies to, 2 dots for blanket immunity to something that preys on humans is way too cheap. Take a look at other 2-dot human merits. You can ask a slightly inconvenient favour from a group and they’ll probably do it. You have some paperwork for a fake ID. You can find bars and get invited to parties. You have some fame within a region. You get +2 dice to resist supernatural mental effects. Etc.
                  None of these are blanket immunity to Hosts. This should be at least 3 dots if the human gains minimal benefit from it, and 5 dots if the human can control any Host powers.

                  The drawback. Hosts don’t like it still isn’t much of a drawback. Your explanatory notes suggest this is a supernatural element that provokes the dislike, sure. You give off a weird energy. Okay, so the life expectancy of a character with this merit in an area where they’re likely to be subjected to Host possession is pretty low. Other shards tend to be around shards, so when one burrows into flesh it can’t control and the others feel a wave of revulsion, they simply tear the immune host apart. Job done. Minimal effort from the Hosts. The human might go on the run but Hosts can probably track the weird energy. The bit where they ‘normally, but not always’ try to kill you. Meh, throwaway line isn’t particularly helpful.

                  Perhaps a better drawback would be that although the human is still in control, he begins mutating just like a Host would. Sure, he still has a human mind, but he starts to look like a bloated spider being with vestigial extra legs growing from his torso. Or has rat-like features and teeth that don’t stop growing. Good luck convincing the Hunters in Darkness that you’re special and human and not a threat and shouldn’t be murdered just because a rat ate your heart.
                  First off, you're right the dot points should go. They came about by me finishing building the core of the Merit, but then seeing a couple of things that needed clarification & not thinking about how to integrate the clarification into the Merit. That's on me.

                  Next two paragraphs. I don't see the human dying when the shartha exits. It could be argued that since the Hosts are physical creatures (albeit weird ones) they could leave things like skin cells, hair samples, blood, excretions behind them. The presence of these could cause the body to continue operating as normal even without such vital organs. As for why such hypothetical leavings have never been found before? Well, maybe they just evaporate in normal circumstances. Part of why this Merit works is tied into the fact that shartha are physical creatures.

                  Being able to use shartha abilities seems a bit much to me. Perhaps that could come in as a seperate Merit that builds upon this one.

                  As for who's taking this? Humans, but they don't necessarily have to be surrounded by werewolves. I put it on a thread for homebrew & fanmade Werewolf: The Forsaken Merits because it makes the most sense. There is no obligation to constrict it to a werewolf game & it might work better among hunters.

                  I have made Merits in the past, but with those there's always been some other Merit that I could use to bounce off of, eliminating some of the questions about the Merit such as the cost. This is the first Merit I've ever made & fleshed out that I had no framework to use as a guiding star. Make it three dots not two.

                  With the drawback I looked back to the original drawback for the Merit which read "doesn't mean your safe from them" & decided I wanted to take that & turn it into an actual drawback. Personally, I feel like I succeeded there. Had not thought about the Hosts being able to track the weird energy, but now that I am thinking about it it makes sense.

                  Last point. Physically turning into a hybrid shartha but retaining control. Call it an alternative drawback. There's still life threatening elements, but they come from a completely different group.
                  As an idea for a story hook coming from this particular drawback, what if a pack of Forsaken hunt one with this Merit & drawback for a while before realizing their mistake. They go to make reparations, but discover that their past actions have convinced the individual that they are a shartha & have started acting like one.
                  It's not a very physical hook in my opinion, more of a psychological "my God, what have we done?" situation.

                  One last thing. Thank you for the criticism, pointing out what works & what doesn't. I hadn't thought of the Merit in much depth beyond & this fleshing out makes it feel more like something that could actually turn up in the setting.
                  Last edited by Krat05; 04-24-2020, 09:33 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Anybeast
                    Prerequisite: Uratha
                    Effect: You do not turn into a wolf, you have some other mammalian beast form. Choose one appropriate quality to come with the different beast form, per dot or get an extra strength quality for multiple dots.
                    Drawback: There is prejudice against Uratha with non-wolf beast forms. It appears to be partially held up by magic. This prejudice is worse the more dots you have in the Merit.

                    Bonus to climbing if leopard.
                    Bonus to running speed if cheetah.
                    Bonus to trickery, deception, & subterfuge if coyote.
                    • They don't have to be bonuses, but these were the examples that I could come up with.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Heart and Marrow (•••)
                      Prerequisites: Blood and Bone Archetypes.
                      Effect: Whether your character is known for being the hot-blooded reactionary who always goes with their gut, or the grounded forward thinker who always has their eyes on the bigger picture, everyone recalls them as the exemplar of their respective personality type. When taking this merit choose either Blood or Bone. Your character has two of the chosen Archetype and may regain Willpower from either. This does not allow them to regain Willpower multiple times per scene, but they may choose which of their two Archetypes apply


                      "The ego is not king of its own castle."

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                      • #12
                        Branding of Irminsul (••)
                        Prerequisites: One or more older family members who have experienced the first change, at least one dot in Renown.
                        Effect: The Branding of Irminsul is most common among the Ivory Claw’s tribe, where these painful additions to the Werewolf’s Renown are carved into every member of the extended Pure family to bind them together and spread their reputation as hereditary rulers among the local courts. However, the rite to mark werewolves with these branching spirit brands can be learned by other tribes, both pure and forsaken.
                        When taking this merit choose a Renown in which the Werewolf has at least one dot. This Renown should be one which either other members of the family possess, or which is emblematic of the family overall. When flaring their Spirit Brands of this Renown the werewolf can choose to also flare the Branding of Irminsul to make the Renown count as being one dot higher than the werewolf possesses.
                        Drawback: Relying too much on the Renown of their family can weaken a werewolf’s reputation, and risks bringing repercussions of their actions down on the rest of the family.


                        "The ego is not king of its own castle."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          What do you fine people think of werewolf Merits that are functionally body horror mutations? I don't mean Deviant: The Renegades-style Variations and Scars, I mean mutations that distinctly make thematic sense for s werewolf---or involve the First Change going horribly wrong?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Demigod Beast View Post
                            What do you fine people think of werewolf Merits that are functionally body horror mutations? I don't mean Deviant: The Renegades-style Variations and Scars, I mean mutations that distinctly make thematic sense for s werewolf---or involve the First Change going horribly wrong?
                            In some cases it can make sense, like the Ivory Claw's refinements and the assorted ones in first edition (favored form, living weapon, fortified form). But at a point, and especially if you have a theme going on, you might look to Wolf Gifts.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Specifically Quicksilver Flesh, the Wisdom facet of Gift of Change, alters aspects of your various forms. But thematically what Demigod Beast suggests makes me think of it from the perspective of the witness and Lunacy pretty much already expresses what effect the Werewolves transformation has on them. Its already body horror to mortals. Further distortion of the Werewolf form beyond this is usually a perversion inflicted by enemies, such as when a Werewolf is ridden by a spirit.


                              "The ego is not king of its own castle."

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