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  • Ajax
    replied to Disparates
    It seems like this "multi-Sect" teams are less likely for the Disparates than they are for the Traditions or the Union. They alliance is SO loose and confederate. There doesn't even seem to have been a big historic come together meeting moment. Just a lot of little establishing a web of somewhat tentative connections. There hasn't been any real attempt to figure out a mutual framework to allow them to function together (like the Union and Traditions did with the Spheres). A kahuna of the Kopa Loei and a Templar are going to have issues getting along with each other from the get...
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  • Ajax
    replied to Disparates
    It seems like the Euthanatos and the Dreamspeakers would be the most likely groups to go. Or at least the vast majority of the Euthanatos as the Madzimbabwe might see some pan-African kinship with the Ngoma (admittedly the two don't have much more in common than two very distant groups on any other continent, but one of the equal and opposite reactions to imperialism has been the creation of such regional identities where they didn't exist before). The Chakravanti as written can be a whole Sect in their own right embracing many different subgroups associated with the Indian subcontinent and...
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  • Ajax
    replied to Disparates
    I like that last bit, though arguably, it's a Nephandi false flag operation in the not-metaplot of the current setting if one takes the "mystery of the Hollow Ones" as written. Effectively, the Nephandi are flushing out and organizing the last possible arena of opposition groups. It could blow up in their faces. Organized is organized and opposition is opposition, after all, even if you have them exactly where you thought you wanted them.

    Honestly, sounds like a good game.

    I'm a little more leery of the "infiltration" idea. It makes the Traditions...
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  • Okay. I disagree. Mage can be about either or both and is probably about something somewhere in the middle. Saying "You get 6 dots and you can only go up to 3, so you have to be a generalist" is not really the point. I can have a very tight character concept and take 2 Spheres at 3 dots. Or I can be Mr. Looky-loo and take 6 different Spheres at 1. Or I can do 3 at 2. Or 3/2/1. Or 2/2/1/1. Or 2/1/1/1/1. Or add some with Freebies and Flaws. None of that means the game promotes a particular style. It doesn't. And it doesn't make the specialist weaker. There are creativity...
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  • And there's a book out there that can help you do it, even....
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  • Ah, I see. To clarify: I just remembered the bit from Ars Magica as an example of different ways to use the system in place to focus or de-focus the character. The beginning Ars Magica Flambeau with his one big-ass spell and the Mage Flambeau Master wouldn't be very much alike in any other way that the specialization. Specialization doesn't mean not dynamic or creative, he's just being creative with fewer but more powerful and versatile building blocks. The Mage Master Flambeau wouldn't be working a few Rotes (or maybe he would, but who cares? Since Rotes are as close to meaningless a...
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  • So...... we aren't supposed to ever mention other games with relevant aspects that might relate to the subject at hand? There are lessons in D&D that are very relevant to aspects of Mage that are frequently both ignored and problematic. And Ars Magica had a VERY important role in the founding of 1) ALL of White Wolf games, as they affected the fundamentals of Vampire which means the fundamentals of the WOD Engine, and 2) Mage specifically, as concepts of both fluff and crunch were lifted either in whole or in part.

    Here is baby. Here is bathwater. You know what to do....
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  • It was the idea that carried through. In Ars Magica, it was considered totally okay to make a generalist mage who wasn't great at big spells but was very versatile. And it was okay to make up a mage who wanted to be good at a particular thing to exclusion of everything else. The system under discussion privileges one of these to the exclusion of the other, and, in fact, to want to be specialized was at one point called "power gaming". Which, it may be, but, it's in the sense of getting a LOT of this restricted types of power at the expense of generalism. And it's not "being...
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  • He doesn't have to throw storms with Correspondence 5. He is willing, nay, exalted, by standing at Ground Zero, the beating heart of a fiery whirlwind of destruction an chaos. His view of magic is primal and visceral. Hands on. And he is very very VERY good at what he does.

    And why isn't that a perfectly okay character concept?

    It's not even, essentially, mine. It's derived from the character ideas used to describe different paths to power by a couple of mages back in Ars Magica, 2nd ed. The first is a Criamon (alas, poor Criamon), who is very good with spontaneous magic,...
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    Last edited by Ajax; 07-19-2017, 12:54 PM.

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  • Seems really complicated and not entirely necessary for some concepts.

    Characters don't have to be well-rounded at all. They can be very lop-sided and interesting in specfic things to the exclusion of all else.

    I could easily see, say, a Hermetic Flambeau mage who has Forces 5, Prime 5 and Entropy 2. (Using the "you get 12 dots for Spheres" from my system above). That's completely outside that system, but it's a very viable character concept. "I blow things up. I blow them up good. I can blow them up with finesse. I can blow them up big time. ...
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  • It's fairly useful across the various splats (except for the typical exception of Wraith). There were a few Hunter books that were really useful overall. The Walking Dead book wasn't bad either as it really provided a whole "zombie" option for the game that was absent elsewhere. And First Contact was a sort of effective across the board update for all those "mortals poking at the supernatural" organizations from the various lines (The Arcanum from Mage, the F.B.I. from Werewolf, the Orphic Circle from Wraith <shudder on that one>, etc.)...
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  • It showed up as a Haunt and as part of the backstory for some Artifacts (The Bastard's Guns) in a Mage game I ran awhile ago....
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  • Ajax
    replied to Describing Awakenings?
    Mage the Awakening dealt with this issue head on and in a manner that has stuck with me, so, to my mind, probably better than most Ascension material has handled it (which from the above seems to be the usual contradictory, mutli-editiion hydra-headed monster ham-handed mishmash that all too often comes about with Mage the Awakneing).

    The made a distinction that could be made on a game by game or character by character basis between Awakenings that occur in some sort of other-worldly never-never and those where the enlightenment comes from some degree of interaction with the material/real...
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  • Ajax
    replied to DimSci Resources
    Since the real world philosophy involved is about the rule of scientists, I guess it's about Control, but only inasmuch as ANY idea of governing other people is about... well... "Control". It's the science part that distinguishes the Technocracy, from, say, the Celesital Chorus's predecessors and their Islamic counterparts who were also about "Control" in the Middle Ages, but with different slant on how that Control was supposed to work. Long and short, what makes the Technocracy the Technocracy isn't a focus on Control, it's the science part. Lots of different groups of folks...
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  • Kudos to you. Master level play can be insane. Power levels in Mage aren't linear at all. Morel like the inverse log kind of exponential and 5 dots in a Sphere is much higher on that line reaching up to infinity (Arete 6?. 6+?) than 4. And 4 is a LOT higher than 3, 2, 1 clustered down near the vertex.

    I've always run Adversarial Backgrounds EXACTLY like Flaws (there are even 100% 1-to-1 correspondences between several of them). I'd run an Apprentice in which time must be invested as per the Apprentice Background, but the amount of care and feeding would be directly related to...
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  • Ajax
    replied to DimSci Resources
    It is a very particular sort of Union game that can hew that way. It's effectively going to end up with ultimate revelations bending to the Traditions being on the right side of history. (OMG the Rosicrucians are right!) The universe really is elephants (e.g. ancient conspiracies of culturally collaberative mages) all the way down.... The Union is sorta purpose built to be futurist and the modern VE's even more so....
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  • Ajax
    replied to DimSci Resources
    I get it. I did that sort of game once as well, but on a HUGE scale with the characters are lineal resurrections of ancient mages of note that traced the origins of mage groups all the way back to Egypt, with little stops along the way like having some of the original mages gathered together by Bonisagus to create the Order of Hermes as prior incarnations, followed by their being scattered among the founders of both the Order of Reason and the Traditions. It can be fun, but it's just achingly implausible and, in the "typical" run of things seems like something rationalists in the...
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  • Ajax
    replied to DimSci Resources
    I buy the bits about what the VEs are like now a la Peter Coyote in ET with some fuel air bomb action, though I would probably lay some of that at the feet of the N.W.O. The VE's would probably be like the bad guys in Stranger Things. "Here's a weird gate. Let's put a guy in a space suit through it. Oh yeah, maybe a probe or two first?" (So.... add Stranger Things to the list but that's just one other dimension. And the obvious one should be Stargate, just take out "planet" for "go through gate to different world").

    Professionally as an archaeologist,...
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  • Ajax
    replied to DimSci Resources
    Those are good, but they would definitely need to be re-tasked for a VE game. The VE aren't brave explorers into the unknown in the same way. They are more "Go interesting places, Meet interesting people and Kill them" types. Even if the players are brave and bold and senstive and interested, that's not their bosses or their mission statement. They are the soldiers on the walls of reality keeping the Masses safe from the Dark Things Outside The World They Know. They are the modern incarnation of the Age of Exploration, sure, but that comes with all the baggage of imperialism, colonialism,...
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  • Ajax
    replied to DimSci Resources
    I wrote an entire post with other suggestions, but the lack of an "undo" key and an errant key stroke ate the whole thing.

    I guess I'd add the way the current Flash TV show handles Earth-2, 14, S, etc. by having a machine in the basement they can and do use when they aren't mucking with some very confusing time travel issues.
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Ajax
Ajax
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