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Alternative mechanics: Scion or Exalted?

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  • Alternative mechanics: Scion or Exalted?

    So assuming I don't want to run this as a D&D/Pathfinder setting, which White Wolf system would you guys suggest?

    Scion and Exalted seem like interesting prospects, but then maybe the Dark Ages books?

    I guess I just want a game experience that plays less like Pathfinder and more World of Darkness.

  • #2
    Depends on what you have in mind, i guess. Personally i would be tempted to go with "nWoD 1st edition" boosted by Mirrors, but that's because i did something along those lines a few years ago.

    Scion was interesting but the system was kind of wonky, based on Exalted 2nd edition with some fiddly bits of its own. The Epic Attribute success' progression in particular could lead to terrible, terrible things. Also, it was never really thought to be played with slightly but still quite mortal characters in mind, so not exactly a very good fit conceptually either (though i do admit Legend kind of goes well with Pathfinder's Mythic Ranks, one of many things Scarred Lands seem to have adopted from it). If you really want to try out Scion for that, i would suggest either waiting for the new edition or going with 1e anyway but reworking the Epic Attribute success' progression.

    Exalted 3e, while also centered on superhuman/semidivine epic beings, has been worked with more thought to the option of playing with heroes going from the quite mundane to the deeply touched by the supernatural but still essentially mortal and so offers a number of options - that while not covering all bases yet - should be more than suffice for a Scarn campaign and go much better with setting's style and tone, imho.
    The merits, charms and evocations might also make an interesting springboard to help with adapting any feats, special class abilities or funky rituals of the oficial books you feel like porting over might be nice.

    Those are my thoughts in general, but i might make other suggestions depending on what exactly you have in mind for a game, what you would keep and what to do away with from the play experience of Scarred Lands in Pathfinder or D20 in general.
    Last edited by Baaldam; 02-05-2018, 09:18 AM.

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    • #3
      Baaldam's recommendation of nWoD 1st Eiditon with Mirrors is probably the best way to do this with the existing White Wolf systems. The Dark Heroes vibe works pretty well and then you just have to iron out a few differences (if you really want to play up these angles) for things like... psychic powers are different and destructive to the world.

      If you're thinking of going with a Mythic-type game, as per the chapter on Mythic Characters in the Pathfinder version of the game, then Scion or Exalted would probably do well, though Exalted may have the different types of Exalts a little too locked in to really do justice to several archetypes of the Scarred Lands.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Psyclus View Post
        Baaldam's recommendation of nWoD 1st Eiditon with Mirrors is probably the best way to do this with the existing White Wolf systems. The Dark Heroes vibe works pretty well and then you just have to iron out a few differences (if you really want to play up these angles) for things like... psychic powers are different and destructive to the world.
        Originally posted by Psyclus View Post
        If you're thinking of going with a Mythic-type game, as per the chapter on Mythic Characters in the Pathfinder version of the game, then Scion or Exalted would probably do well, though Exalted may have the different types of Exalts a little too locked in to really do justice to several archetypes of the Scarred Lands.
        Honestly, playing Exalted without Exalts and their signature charms could work well enough - Sorcery is accessible to completely mortal characters as a merit and creative use of Sorcerous Workings should allow for quests/gambles to reach circles beyond the 1st and if one requires some kind of supernatural puisance to even things out with spellcasters, martial arts and evocations (one 4-5 merit for thar should be fine, imho) can work well enough for that. Epic and yet gritty.

        It all depends on what the OP is more familiar/confortable with to tinker and ST, i guess.


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        • #5
          I don't have any experience with either Exalted or Pathfinder. I have been tinkering with ideas for converting Scarred Lands into Scion. I'm quite new to both (I never played the first editions of either game and am still playing catch-up) but given how active the gods are in the setting, creating Scions (whether through breeding, adoption, or whatever form the god chooses to bestow his/her favor and powers) seems like a natural fit (a case could be made for the Hollow Knights being Scions already, I suppose).

          My primary goal is to move away from the mechanics associated Pathfinder/D&D. I was introduced to Mage: the Awakening a few years back and found the WW/OPP Storyteller system far superior mechanically for the types of games my group prefers. I'm also working on converting the Eberron setting from the d20 system to the Storyteller system for the same reasons.


          "The Man and the Beast are having an amiable picnic in that Savage’s head. It’s rather disturbing." - Blood and Smoke: the Strix Chronicle, pg. 22

          Member of the Circle of Five Gaming Group

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          • #6
            Well, i already pointed out some options and ups and downs i do see on each. It all depends on what you are more familiar with and how much work/hassle you're up to dealing with before even starting the game. If you're already familiar with Awakening, my opinion is that nWoD/Cod with some helping of Mirrors is the way to go. Dark Heroes can play the "child/chosen of the gods" role as well with far less wading through dodgy broken mechanics one might suffer through in Scion, speaking from experience here.

            Exalted has a lot of thematic overlap with Scarred Lands and can be a great alternative too (late 1e or 3e can both work, each with its own differences), but would be less familiar terrain i guess, so i feel more of an option you have it in mind to exploit some partticular element of the system for the sake of your own idea of play experience or get some familliarity with it. All up to you.
            Last edited by Baaldam; 02-10-2018, 09:47 AM.

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            • #7
              I once toyed with doing a "Dark Heroes Scarn" that was based on Mirrors with nWoD. The part I kept getting stuck on was how to represent the Slarecians. My initial thought was that "normal" magic users would use Dark Hero template and go with learning Awakened spells as masteries (per the Mirrors suggestion), but then have the "psionics" or Slarecians gain full awakening and use the Awakened rules. Never got around to finishing up alternate paradox rules - paradox that actively harms the world around you instead of you.

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