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Breeds in Forsaken

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  • Dataweaver
    started a topic Breeds in Forsaken

    Breeds in Forsaken

    I did a thread like this a while back, long before 2e came out; I'd like to try again with 2e in mind. The idea is to port something akin to WtA's Breeds into the metaphysics of WtF.

    First, we probably need a different name than “Breeds”. Unlike WtA and WtF1e, WtF2e doesn't have a hard-and-fast rule that one of your ancestors had to be a Werewolf; all that's required is that you are a Wolf-Blood. And while that usually requires that at least one of your parents was a Wolf-Blood, it's entirely possible for a perfectly ordinary human being to become a Wolf-Blood by being exposed to Lunacy. So the notion of breeding is significantly downplayed, and the uglier aspects of it can be bypassed entirely. So, what to call them if not Breeds?

    Also, let's get this out of the way right now, so it doesn't bog down the rest of the topic: introducing something like Lupus to WtF2e does not require anything remotely like bestiality, unlike WtA; all that's required is to introduce the equivalent notion of Wolf-Blood for wolves. And if you want to firmly slam the door on anything like bestiality, you can reintroduce WtF1e's notion of Ghost Children in cases where such perverse cross-breeding is attempted, and/or add other punishments such as a loss of Renown (e.g., Purity) for attempting such a thing. So please, please, please do not bog this thread down with arguments about how sick you have to be to like the notion of wolf-born Uratha, or intimations about furries being sexual deviants, or any of the other arguments that derailed the original version of this topic.

    With that (hopefully) out of the way: during the spoilers for WtF2e, Stew posted mechanics for Urhanu (Forsaken's equivalent to Lupus) in this Blog post, which covers the mechanics of the Urhanu in 2e. The only issue I see with this involves Harmony: I don't have my copy hand, so I forget which way “acting like a wolf” Breaks; but if it Breaks toward Spirit, then the Urhanu should probably start with Harmony 4 (the same distance from the middle as 6, but on the spirit/instincts side) or 3 (mirroring man-born Uraha starting at 7). If it breaks toward Flesh, the rules look fine as is. The main thing that would be useful here would be advice on how to get into a wolf's mentality.

    As for Metis equivalents: I could see a place for them in WtF similar to the place held by Banishers in Mage. That is, you get a Metis-equivalent if you botch the First Change. Again, it has nothing to do with breeding; but it does represent a messed-up werewolf. In particular, the Metis-equivalent would not be “something between human-born and wolf-born”; there would be human-born Metis and there would be wolf-born Metis, since “Metis” has nothing to do with which form you grew up in before tge First Change. Instead, the “Metis Breed” would represent an Uratha who rejected the change, and still considers himself a human or wolf, as the case may be. As such, it might make sense for it to keep Integrity instead of switching over to Harmony. Not that it's likely to keep its Integrity for long…

    (Clarification: by “human-born” and “wolf-born”, I mean that you were born as, and grew up as, a human or wolf, respectively — that is, those two “Breeds” represent what your life was like before the First Change. By contrast, the “Metis Breed(s)” would represent a “fail-state” of the First Change itself.)

    This splitting of “Metis” into two “Breeds” also resolves the dilemma brought about by the temporary nature of the Gauru form: there are no “Breeds” associated with that form. Instead, “human-born Metis” would default to the wolfman form, while “wolf-born Metis” would default to the “dire wolf” form.

    So: four “Breeds”, corresponding to four of the five forms a werewolf can take. Two of them represent normal werewolves, two represent twisted werewolves; two of them represent werewolves who grew up as humans, two of them represent werewolves that grew up as wolves.

    Thoughts?

  • Dataweaver
    replied
    There's still the matter of pre-First Change Urhanu, and the wolf-equivalent of Wolf-Blooded humans. But at this point, I'll wait until The Pack, or at least a spoiler on wolves in the pack, comes out.

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  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
    OK; then it's a Youth, not a Breed. An Uratha with a Hishu Youth was born human and grew up human until the First Change; an Uratha with an Urhanu Youth was born a wolf and grew up a wolf until the First Change. If there is a third kind of Youth, it is one who came into being as a spirit and lived as a spirit until the First Change.

    With this in mind, I'm thinking that the Urhanu should get a free dot in Animal Ken, possibly with a free Specialty in Wolves (after all, you grew up as a wolf; comprehending how they think is second nature to you), along with the “no Primary Mental Skills” restriction and a Persistent Condition that replaces the -3 Unskilled penalty with automatic Chance Dice status until it's Resolved. Resolving this Condition involves spending enough Experiences to acclimate to human society, which should be at least as much as buying a Skill dot and maybe as much as buying an Attribute dot; I'm not sure which, but I'm leaning toward the latter. In the meantime, you're picking up Beats from this Condition whenever your outsider perspective causes you trouble, as per the normal rules for Conditions.

    How does that sound?
    Ooh, I like that!

    Leave a comment:


  • Dataweaver
    replied
    OK; then it's a Youth, not a Breed. An Uratha with a Hishu Youth was born human and grew up human until the First Change; an Uratha with an Urhanu Youth was born a wolf and grew up a wolf until the First Change. If there is a third kind of Youth, it is one who came into being as a spirit and lived as a spirit until the First Change.

    With this in mind, I'm thinking that the Urhanu should get a free dot in Animal Ken, possibly with a free Specialty in Wolves (after all, you grew up as a wolf; comprehending how they think is second nature to you), along with the “no Primary Mental Skills” restriction and a Persistent Condition that replaces the -3 Unskilled penalty with automatic Chance Dice status until it's Resolved. Resolving this Condition involves spending enough Experiences to acclimate to human society, which should be at least as much as buying a Skill dot and maybe as much as buying an Attribute dot; I'm not sure which, but I'm leaning toward the latter. In the meantime, you're picking up Beats from this Condition whenever your outsider perspective causes you trouble, as per the normal rules for Conditions.

    How does that sound?

    Leave a comment:


  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
    For this concept of “Breeds” (which would be better named with some synonym for “childhood”), you'd probably be best off keeping the supernatural distinctions to a minimum: everything should be attrubutable to Nurture rather than Nature.
    That's what I aim for, yeah.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dataweaver
    replied
    Originally posted by Charlaquin View Post
    But the implication there would be that an Urhanu is somehow more of a wolf than a human-born Uratha is. The whole reason I like the idea of Urhanu is to emphasize that Uratha aren't humans that can turn into wolves, they're shapeshifters that can take human form and wolf form Likewise, Urhanu should not be wolves that can turn into humans, they should be shapeshifters that can take wolf form and human form. Really the only difference should be which of those forms they were born in.
    For this concept of “Breeds” (which would be better named with some synonym for “childhood”), you'd probably be best off keeping the supernatural distinctions to a minimum: everything should be attrubutable to Nurture rather than Nature.

    Leave a comment:


  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by Ephsy View Post
    I does makes sense for a wolf-born Uratha to have issues grasping abstract concepts like Math right after the first change, IMHO.
    Totally. But if you want to play an Urhanu that doesn't struggle with those concepts, you can always just make a character that isn't fresh off the First Change.

    Leave a comment:


  • nofather
    replied
    Sounds like the perfect place for a Raised by Wolves Persistent Condition.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ephsy
    replied
    I does makes sense for a wolf-born Uratha to have issues grasping abstract concepts like Math right after the first change, IMHO.

    Leave a comment:


  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by Korogra View Post

    The shortest answer I could give is Father Wolf was lord of the Border Marches, he had one paw in the shadow and physical worlds both. And as such, his wolf born descendants perhaps may have a closer connection to the gauntlet as a result, since they are wolves first thus they capture the symbolism that empowered Urfarah better than their human born kin.
    But the implication there would be that an Urhanu is somehow more of a wolf than a human-born Uratha is. The whole reason I like the idea of Urhanu is to emphasize that Uratha aren't humans that can turn into wolves, they're shapeshifters that can take human form and wolf form Likewise, Urhanu should not be wolves that can turn into humans, they should be shapeshifters that can take wolf form and human form. Really the only difference should be which of those forms they were born in.
    Last edited by Charlaquin; 03-18-2016, 08:50 PM.

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  • Korogra
    replied
    Originally posted by Charlaquin View Post
    Yeah, the version Stu posted treats the Gauntlet as one step thinner for the purposes of Reaching. The thing is, why? It makes sense in Apocalypse for Lupus to have an easier time Stepping Sideways because in Apocalypse humans are disconnected from nature and by extension from the Umbra. But in Forsaken, it doesn't make sense. Wolves are no more spirits than humans are - if anything, humans are more connected to the Shadow because they collectively have a far greater influence on it than any other creature of flesh (save maybe werewolves). Why would werewolves born as wolves have an easier time Reaching than werewolves born as humans?
    The shortest answer I could give is Father Wolf was lord of the Border Marches, he had one paw in the shadow and physical worlds both. And as such, his wolf born descendants perhaps may have a closer connection to the gauntlet as a result, since they are wolves first thus they capture the symbolism that empowered Urfarah better than their human born kin.

    Leave a comment:


  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by Korogra View Post

    I am completely aware. I was merely making an observation on what it was said with Urhanu, who do have an easier time of Reaching from what I remember.
    Yeah, the version Stu posted treats the Gauntlet as one step thinner for the purposes of Reaching. The thing is, why? It makes sense in Apocalypse for Lupus to have an easier time Stepping Sideways because in Apocalypse humans are disconnected from nature and by extension from the Umbra. But in Forsaken, it doesn't make sense. Wolves are no more spirits than humans are - if anything, humans are more connected to the Shadow because they collectively have a far greater influence on it than any other creature of flesh (save maybe werewolves). Why would werewolves born as wolves have an easier time Reaching than werewolves born as humans? On the other hand, if you decide to include a lineage of werewolves that are born as spirits, it would make perfect sense for them to be more connected with the Shadow than werewolves born of flesh, because that's where they're from. If it were me, I would probably give them a bonus for crossing from the Flesh to the Shadow because the Shadow is a more natural place for them to be. I would not give them that same bonus for crossing in the opposite direction because the Flesh is not a more natural place for them to be. I might even give them a penalty for crossing in that direction, but probably not.
    Last edited by Charlaquin; 03-18-2016, 04:04 PM.

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  • Korogra
    replied
    Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
    Charlaquin was responding to a suggestion that the Ulle'u have an easier time Reaching, not the Urhanu — because wolves (Urhanu) are no more innately spiritual than men (Hishu) are, but these hypothetical spirit-born (Ulle'u) would be.
    I am completely aware. I was merely making an observation on what it was said with Urhanu, who do have an easier time of Reaching from what I remember.

    Leave a comment:


  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
    Charlaquin was responding to a suggestion that the Ulle'u have an easier time Reaching, not the Urhanu — because wolves (Urhanu) are no more innately spiritual than men (Hishu) are, but these hypothetical spirit-born (Ulle'u) would be.
    Dataweaver knows what's up.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dataweaver
    replied
    Charlaquin was responding to a suggestion that the Ulle'u have an easier time Reaching, not the Urhanu — because wolves (Urhanu) are no more innately spiritual than men (Hishu) are, but these hypothetical spirit-born (Ulle'u) would be.

    Leave a comment:

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