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The Castes, their abilities, and Supernals

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Zelbinnean View Post
    A more accurate statement is, "If you want access to E5 offensive combat charms at chargen, you have to be a Dawn." Having E5 combat Charms might make you a better warrior, but there's a lot of effective combinations to be had from, say, E1 Melee Charms and Supernal Athletics on a Zenith, or E1 Archery Charms and Supernal Stealth on a Night. Simply having a Supernal doesn't necessarily mean you'll be the most effective fighter, just that you probably have the highest essence fighting Charms.
    That's really not any more accurate.

    It's not the E5 charms that are the issue.

    It's the E2/3 ones.

    That's the real thing Supernal gives for most characters - E2/3 stuff, which maaaaaybe some E4, but it's unlikely many people will be going for E5 (esp. as a lot of E5 stuff tends to benefit from you actually having E5, rather than virtually having it for qualification purposes).

    E2/3 offensive combat charms are where you go from "dangerous" to "OH SHIT", generally speaking.

    The end result of this is that Dawn caste are going to be the most effective fighters unless they decide not to be. Which is probably okay, but there's no way someone from another caste is going to be in their league unless the Dawn is deciding to let them be.

    I personally feel a bigger problem is Eclipse caste not getting Supernal Performance, though. The charms in there fit perfectly with a lot of what they do.

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    • #17
      Yeah, even at Essence 2, getting an Essence 3 Charm is a Big Deal™. You don't need Nine Aeons Thew to be objectively much superior to someone with the same Athletics rating at Essence 1.


      "From now on, instead of saying 'half-assed', I will use 'muled'. 'This is a muled job, Chris', I will say to my friend Chris. 'You need to do better, or your ass is grass. And not, like, metaphorical grass. There are weeds growing in there as we speak.'

      "'The DEA is after you, man' I will tell him, in all seriousness."

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      • #18
        The whole "only Dawns get combat Supernals" thing ignores Resistance and Dodge Supernal. Trust me, those count.


        Writer for Exalted.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Eurhetemec View Post
          I personally feel a bigger problem is Eclipse caste not getting Supernal Performance, though. The charms in there fit perfectly with a lot of what they do.
          I don't think so. They're not supposed to be the movers of masses. They just have a quiet talk with the leader and advise him how to do things better.


          Silencing Whisper, Eclipse; Amethyst, Changing Moon;
          Daughter of Charcoal and Ash, Dusk, and her Full Moon sister;
          Broken Crystal, Infernal (Night-, or maybe Twilight-equivalent).

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Amakawa Yuuto View Post
            I don't think so. They're not supposed to be the movers of masses. They just have a quiet talk with the leader and advise him how to do things better.
            This. The Eclipse archetype overlaps with the Twilight's (particularly in their context as teachers) more than the Zenith's, as is borne out by the Ability overlap.

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            • #21
              Having a permanent Glorious Solar Sabre would also be cool because it would then be something you could store with Summon the Loyal Steel. At the moment GSS doesn't really interact with it's prerequisite charms at all, and they both provide for different situations. An upgrade charm at E4 would bring them together again, make the tree more appealing.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                Although... does War count as a combat Ability?
                No. It is an ability useful in combat.

                The combat abilities are enumerated on p191 as: "Archery, Brawl, Martial Arts, Melee, or Thrown."


                Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Zelbinnean View Post
                  I don't consider this accurate. Certainly Supernal helps, but I don't the intent is to be as one-stop as you paint it.
                  Except perhaps for pet builds. I can't work out why every single pet charm is Essence 2+, but Survival never goes past Essence 3. It's like, you HAVE to be a Supernal Survival Zenith if you want to start with pet charms, but choosing it as Supernal quickly becomes redundant. I'd personally like to see at least a couple moved down to E1, and maybe the capstone up to E4.

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                  • #24
                    Isn't Essence 2 only at 50xp?

                    I mean, if you're Essence​ 1, having a tiger is probably pretty good without charms. Then after 10 games you can start powering him up.


                    STing Bronze Age Exalted

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                      No. It is an ability useful in combat.

                      The combat abilities are enumerated on p191 as: "Archery, Brawl, Martial Arts, Melee, or Thrown."

                      So that leaves it as merely one of my favourite non-combat Abilities, tied with Performance and Socialize.

                      Originally posted by Amakawa Yuuto
                      I don't think so. They're not supposed to be the movers of masses.


                      Hmm, need to recheck the Presence Charms...

                      I think when it comes to Supernal Ability distributions, who gets what Caste Abilities was hardly arbitrary, and there's probably a decent reason to say that Favored can't be used for it, and in any situation like that it's going to be unavoidable that some people can't get some Supernal Abilities, but... that seems more a limitation of establishing parameters thing than a balance one. What Supernal Ability a character can wind up with feels like prime Golden Rule territory.



                      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                      Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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                      • #26
                        The main problem-case I see with the current restrictions is the Night caste pirate or Dawn caste admiral who wants Supernal Sail. But I do like that only Dawns can get Supernal attack abilities.

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                        • #27
                          Supernal is pretty acceptable for Solars. I would say it does change the incentives for characters quite a lot though!

                          If you want to make a character where, you know, his strength is surpassed only by the power of his heart, then you faced with the choice that his Integrity or Presence is probably going to be supernal compared to his Brawl and Athletics, and that really means he is going to be a Zenith (or perhaps a Twilight or Eclipse but they're not so about physical strength).

                          And more than that, since Integrity / Presence is Supernal, it's probably not a close thing between those two traits, unlike 1e or 2e, where you could have a character be close in performance in both. Unless, you do choose to have a character be close in ability in both by saying "You know what? I'm restricting myself to Essence 1 Charms, so I can have him be close in performance in both". Which is like, well, are many people *really* going to choose to restrict themselves that way? Esp. given social pressure from the rest of their circle ("Don't want to buy those high power Charms in your Supernal? But they'll help us win!").

                          So the incentives are different, and this will lead to different characters. Which is OK for me with Solars (possibly mainly because I do not care much about Solars). But I will be glad to see if other splats get more lateral and generalised boosts to their competency. There's lots of character archetypes who don't at all suit having one clear outlier ability, and it would be nice if DBs or Sidereals (or even non-Ability based Lunars) catered to that if Solars don't. Especially if the systems are in place to set up characters with a more generalised Ability focus to have interesting contests with characters who are much more focused.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Solar View Post
                            Having a permanent Glorious Solar Sabre would also be cool because it would then be something you could store with Summon the Loyal Steel. At the moment GSS doesn't really interact with it's prerequisite charms at all, and they both provide for different situations. An upgrade charm at E4 would bring them together again, make the tree more appealing.
                            Add the following text to the end of Glorious Solar Saber:
                            "An Essence 4+ repurchase of the Charm increases the duration to indefinite. Note that Glorious Solar Saber is a valid target for Summoning the Loyal Steel."

                            Done.


                            Don't feel bad. People tell the developers they get Exalted wrong all the time. -hippokrene

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Childofthesun1 View Post
                              Sorry for the mess.
                              We got tables.
                              Skillz Caste
                              Archery Brawl Melee Throw Dawn
                              Sail Eclipse
                              Stealth Night
                              Craft Medicine Twilight
                              Performance Survival Zenith
                              Awareness Dodge Dawn Night
                              War Resistance Dawn Zenith
                              Larceny Ride Socialize Eclipse Night
                              Bureaucracy Linguistics Occult Eclipse Twilight
                              Presence Eclipse Zenith
                              Investigation Night Twilight
                              Athletics Night Zenith
                              Integrity Lore Twilight Zenith





                              Last edited by Greyman; 11-03-2015, 06:46 AM.

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                              • #30
                                I did an analysis like the OPs as well. What was most striking to me was was that both Twilight and Eclipse are basically screwed in the combat department. It seems like picking up at least one offensive combat Ability, and one defensive combat Ability is a good idea, and Twilights/Eclipses are SoL on that. Zeniths are easier to build as warrior-scholars or warrior-diplomats.

                                I also noted that a Dawn has essentially one build for a weapon master (meaning they only want one weapon category favored), and that includes War. Then they will need to pick up Athletics as favored, but beyond that, they are golden. On the flip side, of course, Dawns can't not be warriors. But really, they are the most popular Caste because they kick ass.

                                Overall, I think the Zenith and the Night are the most flexible in terms of doing the various activities that tend to occupy most Exalted games. Dawn is next from there, and Twilight is firmly stuck in the egghead category.

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