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  • Not explicitly. Whether or not you can apply it to every context (such as rolls to activate powers), can be a very contentious rules interpretation debate, as implicitly the Merit is about high levels of mundane training in a specific occupation and shouldn't necessarily apply to every use of a given Skill (no amount of being a baseball player is going to make you better at aiming fireballs at people); but the games use mundane aptitude in activation by calling on Skills in the first place (and your mage that opts for an aimed thrown spell could shape it like a ball to throw).

    ...
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  • And something I think it's important to stress: the game encourages you to interpret mythological inspirations as you see fit. The Primordial Dream contains vast arrays of Horrors that correspond to mythological creatures that all express that connection differently, because the Primordial Dream and humanity are in a constant conversation with each other.

    The choice Arc put forth isn't a preference in how to play the game, its a choice the game asks you to make implicitly and enables your decision without forcing everyone playing to agree to the same point. A group can easily have...
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  • OK... I don't mean this to put down the debate that's currently going on:

    But to everyone that pushed back on my calling Obtenebration gimmicky? Two pages of debating the source of its power is very much my point. If Obtenebration was just an extension of the early Gothic vampires sometimes mucking with shadows, it doesn't need any connection to another Realm or a source of power. The whole "connection to the Abyss" is the gimmick. It shouldn't matter. Vampire Disciplines should all come from the same place even if vampires sometimes need to seek external instruction...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to on the subject of Rotes
    There's a reason I qualified it as "mechanically." What is, and what isn't fast-casting is going to vary by ST interpretation of what preparation and practice mean in this regard.

    If your mage has cast an effect 100 times, they're clearly practiced. What happens the first time they try to cast it but add on Correspondence to cover a wider range than normal? Is this a new effect they're casting on the fly without practice? Or not?

    There isn't (and never has been) an objectively correct answer to that. Running it either way is completely valid by how the...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    While I think there's a lot of merit to discussing the number of dots, one major issue with a successful implementation of it is that different concepts have vastly different investment criteria regarding maxing out human potential as an Exalted. As noted, combat dominates the Ability spread. This means non-Combat characters can invest deeply into 1-2 Abilities and have high levels of baseline competence with that pile of remaining dots.

    Meanwhile (some) combat focused builds require a much larger chunk of the pool. Melee is probably the most cost efficient (as it has strong all...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to on the subject of Rotes
    Rotes weren't event that good in Revised. They didn't lower the difficulty by 1, they negated the +1 difficulty penalty for fast-casting (a penalty that's never actually been codified in what exactly that means mechanically)....
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  • I'd quibble over calling Hera a narcissist in the BoZ depiction and call it arrogance. But to me the bigger problem is any mistakes she makes you could chalk up to her being caught up in an epic fit of rage at Zeus crossing the line too many times are completely undermined when it's revealed that she's known about it since before Heron was even born, and had been doing her normal passive-aggressive "I can't touch Zeus so I'll attack his bastards" thing that she does all the time in myth.

    Since we still want the big action set piece at the end where the giants attack Olympus,...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to on the subject of Rotes
    Rotes have to be learned somehow in-game (or at start, but there's no actual guide to this). There are no rules about how long it takes, or what it takes, to learn one besides: have the Spheres, cast the spell a bunch.

    Fortunately, there is no XP cost to rotes, and it doesn't really matter because they barely matter mechanically anyway.
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    Dr. LoveMonkey actually made the point about the number of Ability dots on page 2; it's a central aspect of his argument that as you've noted Solars can so easily have enough base dice + Excellencies to barrel through "common" challenges without even straining their points for what they want to focus on.

    I'm not sure the Fudge/Fate pyramid is the solution. Though there's a whole mess to things to deal with since the initial 3e devs (despite vocal fan opposition) decided to keep the BP/XP divide instead of unifying it into a single system. Which is kind of a whole other...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to Integrity and modifiers
    Another way to look at is that Integrity is a human's sense of self. People with strong senses of self are more resilient towards challenges to who they see themselves as, while people with a weak sense of self are more easily thrown off by such challenges. The human mind is very powerful when it comes to protecting self-image, and the stronger it is, the more easily the brain will work to justify/excuse/dismiss things that would seem hypocritical or out of character.
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to You Know What I Hate MK I
    In all fairness, enforcing a mandatory vaccine could be more trouble than investing resources in maximizing voluntary vaccinations (esp. making sure they're free) and encouraging local mandates. It's a lot easier for, say, a school to say, "your kid can't come back to in-person classes or participate in extra-curriculars until they're vaccinated," than it is for the federal government to force you to take one.

    With the current data on transmission, COVID doesn't need the same level of vaccination in the general population as most standard childhood vaccines. ~75% vaccination...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    Yeah. Though they wouldn't want to go against a Supernal Melee in a duel suddenly, or think they're going to out clever a Lunar because of it. DBs also get way less free Excellencies than Solars, and have less broad ones than Lunars, so it's not a huge shift in relative power. Solars get lots of free Excellencies, but they don't start that great. DBs get less, but they start better (and are better since DB ones tend to have dice-tricks as well). But over time, Solars will start to overwhelm that.

    It adds to the logic of the Wyld Hunt in a narrative sense, since finding and killing...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    Universal Essence x #. The current base caps would remain the same (so you can stack in other Charms to get up to the current RAW numbers is you want), as well as differentiating Excellencies between types based on existing mechanics.

    So Solars can break the limit for their Supernal. DBs can go over their limit when a specialty applies. Lunars can Stunt to go over in some fashion. Probably Sidereals can go over to reduce TNs or some such. The idea there is to keep the same potential, but orient it towards character focus rather than general aptitude.

    I'd also make...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    I think halving the dice-cap needs to address what happens to non-Solars. Halving Lunars to 3 with the potential for 6, and Dragonblooded to 2 or 3 with a specialty nerfs not just Excellencies but their whole Charm sets.

    If everybody's max dice-cap is moved to 5, but with some way of breaking that cap, how do you keep Solars both the mechanical monarchs of dice mountain, and not end up with them at huge dice-pools for lots of things if not everything anyway?

    It's no necessarily a bad idea, but it has a huge amount of knock on effects that mean redoing things to the point...
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  • Pretty well.... probably.... the issue is it's a very broadly worded Gift. Some STs crack down pretty hard on it after seeing it abused to hell and back, others find the results of it being used permissively fun. A lot try to balance it against higher level social Gifts the best they can.

    All of those are probably easy things for Persuasion to let you accomplish assuming normal rolling wouldn't do it anyway.
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  • Persuasion is, generally speaking the better Gift, but it depends a lot on the ST and how far they let its rather ill-defined increased effectiveness of social rolls go.

    Apecraft's Blessing can get you a better bonus, but it's for one roll per use, and lots of uses aren't going to need it. Other characters have traits to resist social rolls, fixing a tire isn't going to be difficult outside of high-stress situations. The car isn't rolling back at you after all.

    If Merits are in play, Ability Aptitude style Merits are easier on this concept since you can get a -2 to Crafts...
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  • Yes, I use both, but with a big "depends" on it, since I'm very comfortable adjusting things on the fly towards whatever I'm doing with the game (though right now nothing since VtR is on the bench for a bunch of other things).
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    One of the problems with reducing the dice-caps is a lack of room for the other Exalted if you want to keep Excellencies distinct. One of the stated reasons Ex:Ess is reducing the differences between the Exalted for that project, is so Excellencies work the same (for the most part) across the board. That means they don't have to worry about what to do with DB Charms beyond Excellencies getting very meh if they're cap of 5 or 6 gets halved to 2 or 3. Likewise the Lunar Excellency stunting bonus would be difficult to differentiate from the normal stunting bonus if start doing the same.
    ...
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  • While rather biased from some of the suggestions in the Armory 1e series, I don't let (non-magical) upgrading improve the primary use of equipment.

    That said, there's lots of secondary aspects to equipment (esp, combat equipment) that someone that knows what they're doing can then improve. Armor can have add-ons to cover more parts of the body to either increase targeted shot penalties or just to protect vital bits that aren't normally so. A gun with a mounted reflex sight might reduce initiative penalties when firing unaimed as they can get on target faster, or optical sights that...
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  • Heavy Arms
    replied to What if... there were no Excellencies?
    I'm going to be brief simply because without hearing from the mods yet, I'm hesitant to continue down certain tangents further.



    Yes, but I think you're trying to logic your way through an emotional reaction. Player preferences and biases are varied, complex, and generally not a rational analysis of system specifics.

    I'm not sure where the point you're going for is going though. I can't find the thread of how this ties back to what to prioritize with potential rules changes. I think it would be best to refocus on that.



    Thank you....
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Heavy Arms
Heavy Arms
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