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How do you think Mage 5e will play out?

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  • #31
    A street level game is fine, my problem comes when they make that the ONLY option available, and as some have said already, taking into account the direction that the other lines have taken that looks exactly like where they're going. I get they're trying to bring in younger audiences by making things simpler (and as much as I love the game, it is a dense game to put it kindly), but I'm afraid that they will go too far and create something that it's indistinguishable from any average urban fantasy setting.

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    • #32
      "Pick a card, any card."

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      • #33
        Personally, I wouldn't mind if they would hire Steve Kenson to overhaul the Magick system. One issue I have with every version that's been published so far is that they're all a little too freeform; and I think M5 could benefit from a more solid system of what sorts of Effects a mage can perform and what the game systems are for each. And I think that Mr. Kenson has solid credentials for designing such a thing, with his past experience on various superhero RPGs: if there's anything that matches the sheer diversity of effects that a mage ought to be able to work, it's the sheer diversity of powers featured in a robust superhero setting.

        Mind you, I'm thinking of that as a sort of “back end” for the Magick system; the “front end” would remain the same, with nine Spheres each with five ranks, each rank unlocking an open-ended array of suitable Effects.


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        • #34
          The free-form is the point though. From a watsonian perspective, it's messy and inconsistent because even the sphere's themselves are a convention of paradigm hastily slapped together by people trying to come to grips with the fact that they can do literally anything in a sense that defies their own ability to understand it.

          From a doylist perspective, the free-formness is there because players are suppose to make up their own rules on how their magic works and the spheres are just a flavorless baseline to spend XP on to show progression.

          I think adding to the back end would be more of a detriment than a help. A book of example paradigm-systems would be great though.

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          • #35
            Judging from what they did with Vampire in V5, be prepared to be disappointed and hope that they at the very least don't utterly destroy the setting (& system btw) as they managed to do with Vampire...

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            • #36
              Originally posted by Prometheas View Post
              The free-form is the point though. From a watsonian perspective, it's messy and inconsistent because even the sphere's themselves are a convention of paradigm hastily slapped together by people trying to come to grips with the fact that they can do literally anything in a sense that defies their own ability to understand it.

              From a doylist perspective, the free-formness is there because players are suppose to make up their own rules on how their magic works and the spheres are just a flavorless baseline to spend XP on to show progression.

              I think adding to the back end would be more of a detriment than a help. A book of example paradigm-systems would be great though.
              I'm not saying that the free-form should be removed; that's a front-end thing, and I explicitly said that that should stay in place. What I'm thinking of is something kind of like How Do You Do That?, but done right. Thus, Steve Kenson.

              Put another way: the Spheres determine what Effects you can work. That would remain just as open-ended as it is now. What I'm suggesting is that more effort go into the mechanics of how the Effects work. And I think that should be in the core book.


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              • #37
                Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post

                I'm not saying that the free-form should be removed; that's a front-end thing, and I explicitly said that that should stay in place. What I'm thinking of is something kind of like How Do You Do That?, but done right. Thus, Steve Kenson.

                Put another way: the Spheres determine what Effects you can work. That would remain just as open-ended as it is now. What I'm suggesting is that more effort go into the mechanics of how the Effects work. And I think that should be in the core book.
                That's a solid suggestion. People can choose what to do with the ideas and guidelines.

                My fear is that Onyx Path wants to force a certain style of play. They can't really force us, but they can kill the game.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post

                  I'm not saying that the free-form should be removed; that's a front-end thing, and I explicitly said that that should stay in place. What I'm thinking of is something kind of like How Do You Do That?, but done right. Thus, Steve Kenson.

                  Put another way: the Spheres determine what Effects you can work. That would remain just as open-ended as it is now. What I'm suggesting is that more effort go into the mechanics of how the Effects work. And I think that should be in the core book.

                  I also think that more effort into the mechanics of how the effects work would be a step in the right direction. That's a solid suggestion, for sure.

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Astromancer View Post

                    That's a solid suggestion. People can choose what to do with the ideas and guidelines.

                    My fear is that Onyx Path wants to force a certain style of play. They can't really force us, but they can kill the game.
                    To be fair, I think the thing they're most likely to get right would be making the mechanics of magick more robust. I share your fear, though: what they're likely to get wrong will be the Focus. To me, the biggest weakness of the early editions of Mage was the idea that their approaches to Magick are crutches that need to be let go of — that they are, in a sense, fake. I fear that M5 will return to that notion and double down on it, making Paradigm, Practices, and Instruments lies to be overcome instead of being at the heart of the character.


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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post

                      I'm not saying that the free-form should be removed; that's a front-end thing, and I explicitly said that that should stay in place. What I'm thinking of is something kind of like How Do You Do That?, but done right. Thus, Steve Kenson.

                      Put another way: the Spheres determine what Effects you can work. That would remain just as open-ended as it is now. What I'm suggesting is that more effort go into the mechanics of how the Effects work. And I think that should be in the core book.
                      How do you do that seems like such a waste of wordcount. Instead of giving us clear tools to build paradigms, tools and effects for the newbies with some robust baseline mechanics for more complex effects the whole thing suffered from sphere bloat and inventing two subsystems where a simple exception sidebar would have been enough.


                      What doesn't kill you, makes you... stranger.

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                      • #41
                        That's why I said “…but done right.”


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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Dataweaver View Post
                          That's why I said “…but done right.”
                          I know, I was just complaining about how badly the book missed what the players needed :P


                          What doesn't kill you, makes you... stranger.

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                            I find a lot of people prefer keeping to just the one gameline for actual games, even over in Chronicles where crossover is better supported. Advantages of building from strong themes!

                            On the actual subject, I don't really have expectations, except I do think they've learned some of their lessons and so won't softly encourage players to play a pedophile.
                            The problem with Crossovers isnt about rules nor even the setting, but rather about themes. You can be damn right that in a REALISTIC fully "crossed over" setting there would be no Camarilla or Sabbat or Traditions and Technocracy or whatever.

                            And the reason is simple: vampires WOULD ally/rival mages and vice versa. And so would every single other splat.

                            So instead of having interesting games, you'd have several small "leagues of extraordinary gentlemen"., with small conspiracies of diverse groups of supernaturals.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Kakost View Post

                              The problem with Crossovers isnt about rules nor even the setting, but rather about themes. You can be damn right that in a REALISTIC fully "crossed over" setting there would be no Camarilla or Sabbat or Traditions and Technocracy or whatever.

                              And the reason is simple: vampires WOULD ally/rival mages and vice versa. And so would every single other splat.

                              So instead of having interesting games, you'd have several small "leagues of extraordinary gentlemen"., with small conspiracies of diverse groups of supernaturals.
                              I'll have to take your word for it, because the one time I did crossover as a Fallen Demon in an Ascension game, I kept having to explain what my skills did to the Ascension fanboys because they simply didn't appear in the game, and didn't have comparable skills.

                              I'm not calling that definitive, mind you, I'm just saying my one experience lines up with the "World does not readily take to crossover" take.
                              Last edited by ArcaneArts; 11-14-2022, 01:46 AM.


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                              • #45
                                Originally posted by ArcaneArts View Post
                                I'll have to take your word for it, because the one time I did crossover as a Fallen Demon in an Ascension game, I kept having to explain what my skills did to the Ascension fanboys because they simply didn't appear in the game, and didn't have comparable skills.

                                I'm not calling that definitive, mind you, I'm just saying my one experience lines up with the "World does not readily take to crossover" take.
                                It would need to be an entirely new setting custom taylored for this. For example, the modern technological world is largely a Technocracy invention. For this to have any logic behind it, the Technocracy therefore would need to be the top dog out there amongst ALL of the night critters, particularly when you consider that not only would Traditions, Crafts, Marauders and Nefandi oppose (and be opposed by) the Union, but also the Fae (Changellings), Shapeshifters and quite possibly Vampires too.

                                So the techies would need to be even more powerful than they already are, because they would be crusading against EVERYBODY.

                                And why is that?

                                Well, to shapeshifters, the Union represents the uncontrollable spread of humanity upon Gaia.

                                To the Changellings, the Union would be the ultimate Autumn force, crushing the dreams and wonder of the world.

                                And finally to the vamps, while there isnt a truly ideological reason, the Union are the ultimate hunters, and the descendant of the medieval Inquisition that pushed for their extinction.

                                And for the Union, all those critters are abominations target for termination.

                                This would quickly devolve into "Night Critters vs The Men in Black", since any sort of conflicts between Seelie and Unseelie or Camarilla vs Sabbat, while still there, would be eclipsed and become secondary in the light of this war.

                                Also, since all night critters would share a common foe, they would UNITE. It would be impossible to have active Camarilla vs Sabbat wars, since Traditional mages would inevitably get involved... Those secondary conflicts would quickly turn into political compromises and consequential backstabing cutthroat politics rather than open wars.

                                I mean, this would quickly turn into a "Monsters Hunters" type of game, where you either play one of the night critters trying to survive a hostile world and hide from the hunter who'll inevitably come, or you play the Hunters (the Union) trying to protect the masses with questionable methods.

                                I mean, it does make for an awesome setting, but it wouldnt be WoD anymore

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