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How I wish charms were written

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  • Sorry for the long, long delay responding to this - I posted my initial comment, then got super busy and haven't been back to the forums for a few months.

    I'm back here because I had a couple of questions about your Socialize charmset. Knowing The Soul's Price had (Essence) bonus successes on the roll in the original version, which are removed in your rewrite; was that intentional, and if so why? Also, Wise-Eyed Courtier Method in canon has a once/scene restriction and reveals surface attitudes, emotions and Ties; your version reveals motives and emotions, and doesn't appear to have a once/scene restriction. Again, are those differences intentional, and if so, why?

    Regarding my previous post, a very belated reply:

    Power Awarding Prana was in design space that I don't think should be explored. It's too meta, too "charms as real things" rather than "charms as representing how cool you are."
    Fair enough. I'm not particularly bothered by the idea of (at least) some Charms as discrete powers, so this wasn't a problem for me.

    If you wanted to access charms above your current level of knowledge yourself... just buy one of those, instead of spending the XP on power-awarding prana.
    The original version of Power-Awarding Prana gives you a huge amount of versatility, though; if you enter a town and there's just been a terrible accident and people are badly injured, and nobody in the group has Medicine Charms, you can use PAP to gain an entry-level Medicine Charm and play life-saving medic. Or you can use it to learn Seasoned Criminal Method if you want to quickly get in touch with the local criminal underground. Or learn Graceful Crane Stance for just long enough to cross the rickety bridge over the chasm. You have to have pretty good ratings in all these Abilities, and this kind of cherry-picking of entry-level Charms will never let you compete with specialists in those fields, but it enables your party's loremaster to also be its jack-of-all-trades; buying any one of those Charms doesn't give you nearly the same range of options.

    Which ones specifically? I removed a lot of Lore charms, and guessing wildly which ones you liked doesn't seem that helpful. I don't want to remove things that actually inspired people, just all the extra chaff. (except for forging artifacts/armies from the wyld - that I do want to remove, even if it did inspire people. Be happy to discuss if that's the part you meant).
    Let's see - Prophet of Seventeen Cycles, which you tagged as Sidereal-like (as I mentioned, I do like playing Chosen of Secrets, and that may be the issue here ;-) )

    Sacred Relic Understanding was one I liked - yes, if your GM just says "go ahead and roll Int+Lore to figure out how the artifact works" without this Charm, then you don't need the Charm, but I've certainly had the experience of:
    Players: "we want to know how this thing works"
    GM: "ok, then try putting it on / pressing the big red button and see what happens",
    with no opportunity to figure it out except by (sometimes explosive) trial and error. It's also nice to have codified difficulties for this.

    Similarly, I liked Truth-Rendering Gaze - the only part you kept was the geography part, which was not what interested me. I like Lore Charms that give you an edge in understanding how things work; I think you're perhaps mentally assigning those to Craft in the case where "things" = "artifacts", but I'd rather keep them in Lore, Craft already has plenty to do.

    I think I like the "introducing facts" mechanic more than you do; I probably would have kept Bottomless Wellspring Approach.

    That said, again, awesome rewrite!


    • BlueWinds sorry if this is a dumb question, but have you done the charms from miracles?


      • Originally posted by notanautomaton View Post
        BlueWinds sorry if this is a dumb question, but have you done the charms from miracles?
        I have not. Most of them seem rather more specific than I'd want to spend time on, unless a player of mine had a character to use them already in mind - which makes sense, given why the PDF exists in the first place.


        • In the PDF, you have Durability of Oak as
          Durability of Oak Meditation
          Cost: 3m; Reflexive (One round)
          Prereqs: Resistance 2
          This charm may be activated at any time. The Solar
          gains +2 soak and a hardness of 4 until next tick.

          Does it last one round or one tick? In general, should we take the text or the summary?


          • BlueWinds sorry for the ping after so long, but I'm curious why you removed the society-altering Charms in Socialize? Applying both to the more extreme rewrite and the version that retains dice tricks that I'm trying out rn.


            • Basically I don't like the way they affect the setting. IMO, the Exalted should rule and affect societies the same way people do in the real world - using the levers of institutional power. Being Exalted makes it easier to seize and maintain control of these levers, and more effective at using them, but societies in Exalted are too familiar to those in the real world for the sorts of nation-bending powers that charms in the book grant.

              Basically, don't replace the methods of influence and rule with rules widgets. The setting, and I as a ST, care about them too much for them to be charms you spend XP on.


              • Ah, right. I'm actually mostly wondering about Unimpeachable Discourse Technique, which doesn't allow you to *ignore* the levers, but simply makes it impossible for you to catastrophically fail.

                It's a fair answer, however- and tbh Exalted 3e mostly removed those Charms from 2e *anyways* as far as I can tell. So it's not a huge loss. Thanks for the quick answer!
                Last edited by horngeek; 02-26-2019, 09:50 PM.


                • Possibly relevant to this thread is my own take on this kind of idea, for compare-and-contrast purposes. Here's my take on Archery, for instance. I went for a slightly more compressed and mechanistic feel, particularly with trying to codify variable costs and requirements to use Charms.