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Ancients Awaken- the Old Ones Chronicles (Changing Breeds. Discussion, Brainstorming)

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  • #61
    Originally posted by LostLight View Post
    1) I think I'm going to remove the concept of Breeds as "splats". No, I'm not going to saw there are no breeds at the Changing Breeds (which is stupid) but instead, that there are no "prepared pattern" for them. I mean, most people seem to want to make their own breeds, and while giving examples is good, tying up a bunch of different groups of changers into a single "family" so inorganically just because it is easier doesn't feel right. So, the Nauhal is going to be something personal- you may be a unique changer, a part of a small community or maybe a part of an ancient tradition, but it is going to be something you make, like a Krew in Geist and Demonic Form in Demon. Accords are going to be the X splat, as defining which beast are you (which would be represented at Favor discount), while Dynasties are going to be a Y splat, as defining the tradition of your breed, if you have one (which would represent in Aspect discount).
    So, for example, Bastet or Ursara be in the game or not? Or they would be like loose affiliation "most cat Breeds - called Bastet for shorthand - are like this but individuals Ferals maybe not".

    As to Dynasties - so character could only takes one Dynasty of his own Breed as Y splat? No choosing?

    Wouldn't then Breed and Accord model ( as X and Y splats respectively ) being more logical? And choosing Regencies as Z splat where your shiftier don't need to be part of your Breed, but that can be part of your Accord also. Like Corleone's, from European Lions, could be filled with all Ferals from Lions Breed, but also with Heart-Rippers, because of it's "hunt or be hunted" philosophy. In this Dynasties would be logical to follow pattern of original Breed, but could be open on new Ferals. And they mirror a bit Lodges and Legacies models.

    Breed are more open affiliations, with those mentioned in Changing Breeds as more examples than correct limitation. Think more about Changlings Seemings ( only not limited ) and Kiths relation.

    Originally posted by LostLight View Post
    2) With Harmony representing the connection between Flesh and Spirit, I think that their Morality is going to be somewhat different now that they are "fleshy beings". Their morality should check how close they are for their inner Nahual, and while tying it to "inner balance" sound attractive, I wish to try and stay away from Werewolf- so maybe something about acting along one's instincts. I'm also thinking about changing their Virtue and Vice into something other, but I'm waiting for Werewolf to see what happens there.
    So would be "bad" to be too human or too animal? If not, what would really represent new stat?

    Originally posted by LostLight View Post
    3) Society- there is one. However, it is not something like the Forsaken or the Orders. It is something more in the style of the European Union- there are groups of different breeds who are willing to work together, and they try to add new breeds to their society. They are still "dying", with old traditions falling apart, but new breeds show up every day, starting new Dynasties. While they have their "United Creation Story", not everyone believe in it. Actually, I think about making the political debate about whether should the Breeds work together as part of the game, with 5 big political movements which move from Extreme "Nationalist" (meaning, someone who believe the Breeds should be separated and remove ties with other Breeds) up to Extreme "Socialist" (someone who thinks all Breeds are one, and support violent recruiting of other Breeds).
    I get idea of this loosely alliance - we in Poland are only 10 years from being part of EU - but I don't see this five political factions as necessary. Maybe if they would be Y splat, but then it's too political for were beasts to play, I think.Wouldn't it better to being more like Forsaken vs Pure or Pentacle vs Seers division? Rather larger sects in normal Feral society? With being the three main fractions it could make some scenes.

    Originally posted by LostLight View Post
    4) I'm thinking about the suggestion to allow the Breeds to change their breed, and I must say I like it. I think I should tie it to their Power Stat (which may or may not be Primal Urge) and to their Accord. Doing so may be a sin against their "Morality", especially if they are changing outside their Accord (like, from a Bunny to a Lion). They could also try to "add" Nahuals instead of changing them, which would again be depended on their power stat and could end up in creating a Chimera. I'm also trying to think why the Uratha shouldn't be able to do so. I think that it is because of the blessing of Luna- which mean that while the Forsaken are forever banned from the process, the Pure could do so. the "Socialist Changers" would support the process, claiming that it would allow them to become one, while the "Nationalists" are going to oppose it for violating their "sacred change".
    I would advise maybe eating literal heart or brain of victim to do it. There are many legends in primitive cultures that eating ones heart would give you his soul. And those actions would clearly be violations of some Morality, to be sure. Always thought that this aspect was somehow under developed in Changing Breeds.

    Originally posted by LostLight View Post
    5) finally, the Old Ones. From what I can tell from the preview, the Idigams are going to be too similar to what I planned the Old Ones to be, so I'm going to make a drastic change. The Old Ones are dead. They are extinct, forever a proof for what happens for a changer who stop changing and can't adapt to the new world. However, being dead doesn't make them meaning less. Their bones still hold their power, and they could change the world to how it has been thousands of years ago, corrupt people and beasts into horrible forms and even grant special Aspects or Favors to the Ferals- in exchange for their sanity. By changing a Feral, the Old One could even "return to life" in a way- meaning, the fossil would transform the changer into the form of a being which died thousands of years ago, a thing done in the same way a Feral shift its Nahual and thanks to their mutable nature.
    I very like this idea and I'm just waiting for weredinosaurs to reclaim the Earth. I may add that Old Ones remains would change people in to some variation of Spirit-Ridden and they would need to: 1. Change its surounding to suit the Old Ones. 2. Find Ferals to let them be taken by Old Ones Nahual and return to being.


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    • #62
      As it seems I will answer my own question...

      Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
      I want to add Ursara ( werebear ) character to our testing Idigam Chronicle game and some mechanical guidelines would be in order. I assume that rules and modifiers would be to make every Breed based on sum of stats the Uratha have in they forms and two versions of Death Rage would be give also to other races. What other changes would be needed? And what modifiers would Brown Bear changer have now?

      Also - would new version of Breeds have the Deed Names? And will Breeds could have other Weakness, beside the Silver, like Corax having both Silver and Gold?
      Here are stats I based on rules in War with the Pure. Any comments welcome.

      I made that character can take negative modifiers to rise whole modifiers adjustment for a form. Each modifier is 1 Form Point. Size and Perception modifiers are also counted as Form Points. Uratha are having total sum of bonuses of:
      • Throwback: 5 Form Points
      • War Beast: 11 Form Points
      • Dire Beast: 10 Form Points
      • Primal Beast: 7 Form Points
      So here are stats for Storm Bears, as I want to use one in my today game.

      Storm Bears
      Gigantic ur-(were)bears of Scandinavia looks like this.
      • Throwback: Strength +2, Dexterity -1, Stamina +2, Size +1, Perception +1
      • War Beast: Strength +5, Dexterity - 2, Stamina +4, Size +3, Perception +1
      • Dire Beast: Strength+4, Dexterity -1, Stamina +3, Size +2, Perception +2
      • Primal Beast: Strength +3 Dexterity -1, Stamina +2, Size +1, Perception +2
      What do you think about it?



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      • #63
        Sorry, only now I had some time to give full attention to the thread :P

        I'll leave the opinion for the mechanics for someone else, because my personal believe is that as long as the mechanics serves the story you want to tell, they work just fine (and the game balance is a myth :P)

        now, for your questions:

        1) Well, I meant Regencies, not Dynasties *blushes* I didn't had the book on me while I wrote it, so I mixed up, sorry.

        Anyway, the problem with Breed as a splat is that it there are too damn many of those! Plus, some of them are kinda "forced" and relays on a certain way someone interpreted the Breed. Accords seem to me as an X slat because they truly define what kind of animal are you. You exact "Breed" or Nahual is more equivalent for Demonic Form, which you make out of Favors. Some Nahual are more common among certain Accords (represented as "Favor Discount"), but you can choose to do it differently. You choose one Regency which represent the Tradition you come from, but you can change Regencies, for they are political movements. A Regency is a myth, a story that binds certain shifters together, and they share their knowledge between their members, represented as "Aspect Discount". While it would be mostly "make your self" Regency, there would be some examples for it. When your think about a Regency, think the Uratha Society and how they are based around the Father Wold myth. This is a Regency. Plus, most of what I wrote about the Breeds earlier could be interpenetrated as Regencies, and would be used as Regency examples in the CBC,

        In short, here is how things are:

        Nahual- you inner Beast, represented by your Favors.
        Accord- the type of animal you are, which shapes your Nahual.
        Regency- the Tradition to which you belong, either by joining it after your Change or by being a part of it since birth.
        Breed- the combination of your Nahual, Accord and Regency. This is actually who you are.

        2) still have no clue about their Morality stat. I think it would be too "bad" if you act outside of your instincts, so it should be a very loose morality system that could be adapted to many Breeds.

        3) the "Five Political Movements" is not actually a splat, but more of an ideology. I chose 5 "movements" simply because this is how it works in my country, and because it represent Extremists from both side, Moderates from both sides and those who try to make the whole thing working. This is more of a setting thing, with the movements not really being united but simply representing 5 different ideologies which are popular among the Breeds, which are "My Breed is separate and should never work with other Breeds", "My Breed may be connected to the other breeds, but I prefer to stay independent", "All Breeds should work together for a common goal", "All Breeds are equal, and by working together we could achieve much more" and " all breeds are the same, and you mus join us". Again, no mechanic benefit from here, but simply story hooks and ideas.

        4) I'll think exactly how to do it, but eating the heart may be too close to Lunars from Exalted (not that it is a bad thing, but I need to think about it). Plus, eating the hearts of other Breeds kinda works against the idea of certain Ferals who wish to unite all the Breeds together by practicing that technique- you can't create a unified society when you must eat your friends.

        5) more or less what I was thinking about :P. Just wanted to add that as you know, there weren't humans around when the Old Ones were alive, so to what the Old Ones changed? other dinos. Or, actually, other prehistoric beings. If they changed at all between forms, and didn't just mutated to other, more horrifying forms. It will be dressed in the chronicles, as well as how becoming "one" with an Old One effects a Feral's human form.

        About the Shadow- yeah, there may be an Aspect or two about interacting with Spirits, but no more than the way a vampire or a similar creature interact with the Shadow. The Breeds are Flesh, not spirit, which is why the Uratha confuse them so much.


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        • #64
          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          1) Well, I meant Regencies, not Dynasties *blushes* I didn't had the book on me while I wrote it, so I mixed up, sorry.
          Don't worry, I understood that.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          Anyway, the problem with Breed as a splat is that it there are too damn many of those! Plus, some of them are kinda "forced" and relays on a certain way someone interpreted the Breed.
          But this model works very well in Changling, don't you think? You make Breeds as Seemings - broad, very distinct types of "beasts" - and they can work more or less as they are in Changing Breeds. The individual Species are like Kiths - there are many, many of them, and each player can come up his own. In Changling you make concrete character by choosing it Kith, and the same would be with Old Ones Chronicles - you would choose concrete Specie in broad Breed you think you are part of.

          Truly, if in Changling you can make your own X-Splat following guidance, why wouldn't it worked with Changing Breeds? Give me good reason why variety is a bad thing?

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          Accords seem to me as an X slat because they truly define what kind of animal are you.
          Accords are bad as X-Splat because they can evolve in play. They aren't like Auspices of Uratha in that they are placed once and for all in life of feral. Like in my in-play example, I have a werebear that is now Sun-Chaser because he want's to live a life of "fun". But his ancestral spirit is calling him, and want him to become Den-Warden. Looking more in to it, he could finally become Root-Waver if he would use his skills to build and help community.

          I would also would want to point out that changing Accords are more in spirit of your own theme of evolution for OOC - character, with inner development, will evolve in his life to finally finding correct way for his Nahual to help him make relevant to humanity and world as large. I think it's very fitting in this way.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          You exact "Breed" or Nahual is more equivalent for Demonic Form, which you make out of Favors. Some Nahual are more common among certain Accords (represented as "Favor Discount"), but you can choose to do it differently.
          It could be used as it is with Nahual as being X-Splat, just like with Kiths of Changling. The player and Storyteller will just make background, or use those in Changing Breeds as examples to use.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          You choose one Regency which represent the Tradition you come from, but you can change Regencies, for they are political movements. A Regency is a myth, a story that binds certain shifters together, and they share their knowledge between their members, represented as "Aspect Discount". While it would be mostly "make your self" Regency, there would be some examples for it. When your think about a Regency, think the Uratha Society and how they are based around the Father Wold myth. This is a Regency. Plus, most of what I wrote about the Breeds earlier could be interpenetrated as Regencies, and would be used as Regency examples in the CBC,
          I would need to see this to judge idea, but I see a one very big problem with that take - you got at least 5 different "myths" for game. I'm more inclined to leave as one "monomyth" for whole templete, or make it like in Requiem - very isn't any one myth, ST himself choose his own stories. Having 5 different stories, with each having different "political takes", will lead to too much chaos on game session. But I would need to see more to say final word on this.


          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          Nahual- you inner Beast, represented by your Favors.
          Leave it as X-Splat, it will be enough, really.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          Accord- the type of animal you are, which shapes your Nahual.
          All animal can be most Accords. Brown Bears can be Den-Warden, Hart-Ripper, Sun-Chaser, Wind-Dancer and Root-Waver. It is all based on what "myths" the concrete changer takes as "his" ideal. You can't just say "all cats are shamans", as there is variety of myths that fits different takes on each role. And each character can be different ones on the life.

          This varitey and character development also is very fitting with your evolution theme, you choose for fanbook.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          Regency- the Tradition to which you belong, either by joining it after your Change or by being a part of it since birth.


          Breed- the combination of your Nahual, Accord and Regency. This is actually who you are.
          Breed, as name describe, should be for very different members. What you describe is very specific, very individual. Much better would be to call it Nahual, because it's exactly what developers of original Changing Breeds do this.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          2) still have no clue about their Morality stat. I think it would be too "bad" if you act outside of your instincts, so it should be a very loose morality system that could be adapted to many Breeds.
          Nahual, your animal self? Or maybe Instincts? Some name to think about.

          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
          3) the "Five Political Movements" is not actually a splat, but more of an ideology. I chose 5 "movements" simply because this is how it works in my country, and because it represent Extremists from both side, Moderates from both sides and those who try to make the whole thing working. This is more of a setting thing, with the movements not really being united but simply representing 5 different ideologies which are popular among the Breeds, which are "My Breed is separate and should never work with other Breeds", "My Breed may be connected to the other breeds, but I prefer to stay independent", "All Breeds should work together for a common goal", "All Breeds are equal, and by working together we could achieve much more" and " all breeds are the same, and you mus join us". Again, no mechanic benefit from here, but simply story hooks and ideas.
          I don't see this as Y Splat for game you are describing on as evolution. Also, you are creating unneeded conflicts inside players group. In Mage terms you aren't describing Orders equivalent, but more as those movements would be Pentacle alliance or Seers of Throne. It's level above. And game become to political on the level as "reinventing our lives".
          Last edited by wyrdhamster; 06-14-2014, 09:51 AM.


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          • #65
            Quick side note (I haven't dug deeply into this thread, but since its running parallel to what I am working on currently, I will later):

            The "Old Ones" remind me of the big nasty zerg from the Heart of the Swarm. Ya know, the ones that existed before the swarm got a hold of them. As they grew, they adapted to their environment, and gained their prey's strength. And when they started feed in each other, they started gained the strengths of the consumed zerg. This lead to a stalemate between the biggest and nastiest of the ancient zerg, who desperately wanted to eat their neighbor, but couldn't be sure they would win the fight, or that another ancient zerg wouldn't come by while they were still weak from the battle they just won.

            I don't know if you have plans for it, but another idea is to have your old one's ability to alter the land around them include native species, which gives you plenty of random monsters for your players to fight. It will also force the characters to stay on the move, least they accidentally stay too long within an Old One's sphere of influence, and become more his servants then his foe.

            All in all, awesome idea. Keep 'em coming!

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            • #66
              Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
              Project note: I think that Shadow Realm should be totally optional, not taken away. Like 3 Aspects added on sidebar, or maybe little Appendix on few pages.

              Looks like the project is too late for this given the idea I have is completely at odds with the foundation laid.

              But mostly the idea is why the hell are the Uratha the only ones with spirit patrons? Surely Father Wolf and Luna weren't the only ones that have descendants running around but meh.

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              • #67
                Originally posted by Shock View Post
                But mostly the idea is why the hell are the Uratha the only ones with spirit patrons? Surely Father Wolf and Luna weren't the only ones that have descendants running around but meh.
                I would say that this is totally ST fiat of thing. I'm looking more on ancestral spirits or rare Totems for Breeds. True is thing that Breeds are more race of flesh, than spirit. Even when I make my Ursara as spiritual kind, I'm more inclined to not use they own "Father Wolf/Wolf Mother" in creation myth, One of reason is that Changing Breeds have "we are dying race" kind of feel.

                But also this would lead that Luna/Moon would slept with half of zoo.

                In the best I would mentioned in the sidebar possibilities of spiritual patrons for Breeds. One of most appeling thing about ferals is that they are mysterious and ST has any right to tweak them to they own game.


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                • #68
                  Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post

                  I would say that this is totally ST fiat of thing. I'm looking more on ancestral spirits or rare Totems for Breeds. True is thing that Breeds are more race of flesh, than spirit. Even when I make my Ursara as spiritual kind, I'm more inclined to not use they own "Father Wolf/Wolf Mother" in creation myth, One of reason is that Changing Breeds have "we are dying race" kind of feel.
                  Considering that was a theme for Dragon the Embers, I am very well aware of it.

                  Then again, I look outside to see a swarm of magpies sitting in a tree. I turn out the lights and try to go to sleep only to be awakened by the sounds of stray cats fight/screwing outside my window. The place where I work has a pair of falcons nesting in the balconies and the ants have conquered the sidewalk.

                  The Breeds as a whole do not lend well to that particular theme as many animals adapt extremely well to urbanized environment and the theme only works on breeds who simply can't adapted (AKA large ferals). In my mind, the theme of a dying race should be thrown of the few breeds who are dying out while the rest of them focus on the theme of "urbanized jungle" filled with the usual fighting over mates, loci, and territory. the instincts of falcon-shifters urge them to feast on corpses of crow-shifters, the instincts of crow-shifters banding together to beat the crap out of predator-shifters and so on.

                  It shouldn't be as Darwinian as the freakin Shadow but it comes close and the culture should be able to make any mortal who ventures into it say 'Holy crap! These guys are brutal!".

                  Edit-

                  the other thing I wanted to mention is what I've noticed from nWoD games in general is most of which can have their main antagonist splat (Strix/VII for kindred, Seers/banishers/abyssal magi for Mage, etc) pulled out of the game and it function well enough without them because all the remaining factions have completely intellectually and morally valid ways of doing things that take turns beating the crap out of each other.

                  It's something to chew on.
                  Last edited by Shock; 06-19-2014, 06:09 AM.

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                  • #69
                    Originally posted by Shock View Post
                    The Breeds as a whole do not lend well to that particular theme as many animals adapt extremely well to urbanized environment and the theme only works on breeds who simply can't adapted (AKA large ferals). In my mind, the theme of a dying race should be thrown of the few breeds who are dying out while the rest of them focus on the theme of "urbanized jungle" filled with the usual fighting over mates, loci, and territory. the instincts of falcon-shifters urge them to feast on corpses of crow-shifters, the instincts of crow-shifters banding together to beat the crap out of predator-shifters and so on.

                    It shouldn't be as Darwinian as the freakin Shadow but it comes close and the culture should be able to make any mortal who ventures into it say 'Holy crap! These guys are brutal!".
                    LostLight, that is main author of project, proposed the Theme for fanbook of Evolution. Rest of us agree with that. In this main theme there is place for "we are dying race" as well "we must adapt to the new surroundings". In our new take on Changing Breeds the Gift were given to humanity so they could resolve and thrive in world of predators ( i.e. vampires, zombies, mages, and whole rest of WoD ) by Nature ( or other entity the individual Breed praise as patron ). But humans overturn to they secret protectors, developed they technology and don't need they now, so Breeds need to cut they new way in this world that don't need them. Both they First Change, and life after on is one evolution to the World of Darkness. Also, antagonists are old kind of Breeds that were extinct, but they are returning - lost they battle on dominancy in WoD ecosystem and evolution race. But they are still coming back.

                    It's as we see new take on Chaning Breeds setting in few sentences.

                    And both Bastet ( werecats ) or Wing-Folk ( werebirds ) can be both dominant group in the region. But they still would need to adapt to world of Man that don't need them. And they could easily fight over territory and a like.

                    Originally posted by Shock View Post
                    the other thing I wanted to mention is what I've noticed from nWoD games in general is most of which can have their main antagonist splat (Strix/VII for kindred, Seers/banishers/abyssal magi for Mage, etc) pulled out of the game and it function well enough without them because all the remaining factions have completely intellectually and morally valid ways of doing things that take turns beating the crap out of each other.
                    Remains of Old Ones, as LostLight imagined them, are remnants of ancient Breeds that can take control on now feral, or other being and make her First Change. It can even control people a bit. Yeah, its basically magical dinosaurs bones making were-t-rexes! ( But not only )

                    I could easily see Old Ones wanting to take control over mage or vampire - but interesting would be implications. Would they work only to feather Old Ones Breed, like sorcerer coercing people in "nest" so, for example, five humans would "hatch" Velociraptors souls in them? Thyrsus shaman thinking he IS a were-raptor? Vampires could hoard the blood to spill on the Old Ones to awaken them.

                    LostLight, have you got more ideas on Old Ones beside were-dinosaurs?


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                    • #70
                      Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                      Here are stats I based on rules in War with the Pure....
                      War Against the Pure stated a +6 attribute bonus, without putting any negatives in there, so I would avoid outright negative attributes. For example, what would you do if the base character had a 1 dexterity in human form? If it did drop him to -1 dots in dexterity, wouldn't that cripple/kill him? If you kept it at a minimum of 1 dot, he will have not reason to increase it, as he'll never gain any benefit until he gets a Dexterity of 4.

                      Instead, I would apply a -1 or -2 to all dexterity based dice pools. It is likely the effect will be the same as what you were looking for, but the wording will look different. You won't have to worry and negative attributes and he will benefit from increasing his attributes.

                      In my own project, I am using Inborn Aspects to help expand the difference between the Fera (I learned what that meant today!). Instead of pushing their strength to insane levels (which is what i think +5 is), make the Aspect grant a 9-again rule on strength based dice rolls. To make it a little extra special, I would also add the bonuses of the giant merit while in the bear forms. Though the giant part may only be for the storm bears. Perhaps require the character to have the giant merit before taking the template?

                      On the size of the animal form...I am not above simply assigning a size to the animal form, if its within 1 or 2 of the human size. Its not a small difference (every health box matters) but its not big enough to interfere with my sensibilities. Any bigger than size six needs to offset some how, I think, through a an Aspect or merit or something.

                      So...for Storm Bears, I would put it as:

                      Inborn Aspect: Strength of Giants (9-again on strength based rolls), benefits of the Giant merit while in hybrid-to-primal forms) -1 penalty to all dexterity based dice pools
                      Hybrid Form: Strength +4, Stamina +2, +3 size (including Giant merit), Health +5, Perception +2, claws deal +1 lethal, teeth +2 lethal
                      Primal Form: Strength +2, Stamina +1, Size +2 (includes species bonus and Giant merit), Health +3, Perception +2, claws and teeth deal lethal damage

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                      • #71
                        Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                        War Against the Pure stated a +6 attribute bonus, without putting any negatives in there, so I would avoid outright negative attributes. For example, what would you do if the base character had a 1 dexterity in human form? If it did drop him to -1 dots in dexterity, wouldn't that cripple/kill him? If you kept it at a minimum of 1 dot, he will have not reason to increase it, as he'll never gain any benefit until he gets a Dexterity of 4.
                        I diverge here with War Against the Pure because not all Nahual animals are swift and as deadliest like wolfs, on witch rules they base it. I use max -3 Dex modifier if animal is a very uncontrolled one in his hybrids forms. Others can be weaker in they animal forms, ending with negative Strenght or Stamina. In this you get more diversity on games. If you play Changing Breeds you play it because you want something other than classical Werewolf "and we all are dark, spiritual heroes". One of things that can change that is negative modifiers in form change, highlighting differences between your Species and Uratha.

                        BUT I would advise most of the time to not take negative modifiers - most Species are "typical" animals, and as such, they dwell to more balanced way of living, as it is most successful. Mostly only Old Ones or very old Nahual - like Storm Bears - would use negative modifiers. Also, some very small Species could use them. from time to time.

                        Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                        Instead, I would apply a -1 or -2 to all dexterity based dice pools. It is likely the effect will be the same as what you were looking for, but the wording will look different. You won't have to worry and negative attributes and he will benefit from increasing his attributes.
                        But if only wording is different, why to change it? On Changing Breeds character sheet we have Dexterity modifiers place, not section "Dexterity rolls modifiers". Also, you must remember that lower Dexterity is lower Defense and Initiative, giving only penalty to rolls is much more beneficial to characters, so as balancing factor is a bit weak.

                        I must point you to Manipulation modifiers example. I have plenty werewolf characters that now have 0 or "-1" Manipulation. It has bigger logic behind it, as in raging war forms, characters are unsuited to make very much of social threats. The same could goes to Species that have negative Strength, Dexterity,

                        Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                        In my own project, I am using Inborn Aspects to help expand the difference between the Fera (I learned what that meant today!).
                        It's feral, not Fera. Fera is oWoD name for all Changing Breeds that no one knows were they got. Ferals in nWoD Changing Breeds is they own nickname for they "race", like mages called themselves Awakaned and vampires Kindred. Also popular are beast-blooded, like my Ursara would be call bear-blooded.

                        Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                        Instead of pushing their strength to insane levels (which is what i think +5 is), make the Aspect grant a 9-again rule on strength based dice rolls. To make it a little extra special, I would also add the bonuses of the giant merit while in the bear forms. Though the giant part may only be for the storm bears. Perhaps require the character to have the giant merit before taking the template?
                        Insane is logical in this example, as Storm Bears are described as INSANELY strong and big. They could be easily in Land Titans area, if weren't Bears.

                        It's interesting thing, but how much would you give dots on Aspect per Nahual? Changing Breeds advise 3 dots of inborn Favors ( natural Aspects, connected with Nahual itself ) and 7 dots of normal Aspects, more tricks that character heave learned after First Change.

                        Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                        On the size of the animal form...I am not above simply assigning a size to the animal form, if its within 1 or 2 of the human size. Its not a small difference (every health box matters) but its not big enough to interfere with my sensibilities. Any bigger than size six needs to offset some how, I think, through a an Aspect or merit or something.
                        So you are making problem go away by saying it's not here, and on fly making untested mechanics.

                        I think that my solution is much better. Treat Size as one of Form Points, and those with smaller Size will get more points on other things. As I think about also accounting Manipulation for this, maybe Hare, Fox or Rabbit could get even positive modifiers for Manipulation in the Hybrid forms - they are so unnaturally pleasant and diminutive, you couldn't take eyes of. And Fox Hear-Ripper lady just go to you and you let her slit your throat...

                        Or I could propose that free Form Points could be spend on Aspect working for only this form - like you 9-Again for giant Storm Bears.

                        Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                        So...for Storm Bears, I would put it as:

                        Inborn Aspect: Strength of Giants (9-again on strength based rolls), benefits of the Giant merit while in hybrid-to-primal forms) -1 penalty to all dexterity based dice pools
                        Hybrid Form: Strength +4, Stamina +2, +3 size (including Giant merit), Health +5, Perception +2, claws deal +1 lethal, teeth +2 lethal
                        Primal Form: Strength +2, Stamina +1, Size +2 (includes species bonus and Giant merit), Health +3, Perception +2, claws and teeth deal lethal damage
                        It dont feel all that more powerfull from Uratha templete. Those Storm Bears looks more like normal Bears, not ancient Ur-Bear that fluff in book is describing them. Compared to the werewolves templeate they got what? A Strength +1 and +1 Size. It's more look like as Grizzly, not monstrosity of ancient legends.
                        Last edited by wyrdhamster; 06-21-2014, 03:40 AM.


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                        • #72
                          First, which was last:
                          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                          It dont feel all that more powerfull from Uratha templete. Those Storm Bears looks more like normal Bears, not ancient Ur-Bear that fluff in book is describing them. Compared to the werewolves templeate they got what? A Strength +1 and +1 Size. It's more look like as Grizzly, not monstrosity of ancient legends.
                          I wasn't actually trying to make a more powerful Uratha template. I was attempting to make more closer in line to the werewolf template, thus the baseline all the other shapechanger templates would be based on. I didn't see or make an Urtha template, so I really can't compare. That's a good point, though.

                          I should have stated somewhere how important the balance between each of the species is to me. While I understand there is no way a were-humpback whale is going to balance with a were-sugar glider, when I make it, there is going to be an attempt. Nothing is more frustrating to me as a player than watching another player hogging all the action because my concept is weaker in dice modifiers, but not coolness. Nothing is more frustrating to me as a Storyteller than watching a solid, original character concept being upstaged by a loose-collection-of-rules-barely-tied-together-by-a-shoe-string-excuse-background. Sorry about that; really should have said something.

                          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                          I diverge here with War Against the Pure because not all Nahual animals are swift and as deadliest like wolfs, on witch rules they base it. I use max -3 Dex modifier if animal is a very uncontrolled one in his hybrids forms. Others can be weaker in they animal forms, ending with negative Strenght or Stamina. In this you get more diversity on games. If you play Changing Breeds you play it because you want something other than classical Werewolf "and we all are dark, spiritual heroes". One of things that can change that is negative modifiers in form change, highlighting differences between your Species and Uratha.

                          BUT I would advise most of the time to not take negative modifiers - most Species are "typical" animals, and as such, they dwell to more balanced way of living, as it is most successful. Mostly only Old Ones or very old Nahual - like Storm Bears - would use negative modifiers...On Changing Breeds character sheet we have Dexterity modifiers place, not section "Dexterity rolls modifiers". Also, you must remember that lower Dexterity is lower Defense and Initiative, giving only penalty to rolls is much more beneficial to characters, so as balancing factor is a bit weak.
                          You are, of course, very right. I will have to think on this a bit more. I had not considered the example of Manipulation, or the modifiers to the Initiative and Defense.

                          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                          It's feral, not Fera. Fera is oWoD name for all Changing Breeds that no one knows were they got. Ferals in nWoD Changing Breeds is they own nickname for they "race", like mages called themselves Awakaned and vampires Kindred. Also popular are beast-blooded, like my Ursara would be call bear-blooded.
                          Duely noted. I am "cross platform" reading, so I am confusing myself. I'm gonna attempt not to confuse others. I like the idea of sticking with 'blooded' as a suffix, though.

                          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                          Insane is logical in this example, as Storm Bears are described as INSANELY strong and big. They could be easily in Land Titans area, if weren't Bears.
                          Yes, normal bears are hugely strong; the base grizzly from Blood of the Wolf puts them at Size 7, with a Strength of 5 and Stamina 4. Your ur-bears (not necessarily the storm bears, mind you) should be more so. Say, Size 8 and Strength 6 and keep Stamina 4 (individual variations would exist). It may not look like a huge difference, until you take into account its a five point scale base. Looking at it that way, Limiting the bear-blooded to a +4 strength may not look so out of hand, especially with the 9-again rule.

                          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                          It's interesting thing, but how much would you give dots on Aspect per Nahual? Changing Breeds advise 3 dots of inborn Favors ( natural Aspects, connected with Nahual itself ) and 7 dots of normal Aspects, more tricks that character heave learned after First Change.

                          So you are making problem go away by saying it's not here, and on fly making untested mechanics
                          Inborn Aspects aren't suppose to have a cost, per the War Against the Pure, to which I agree. Its that one facet that separates one breed from the next. Its also how the Forsaken is separated from the rest of the Shapechangers. It includes the natural abilities to fly, enter the spirit world, have pack totems, and so on. In my project, its how I am separating (further) one species from the next. Aspects (the more generic style) has point costs, but I'm speaking of Inborn Aspects, much like Resurrection and Flight, could be more specific to a group, such as Land Titans and Laughing Strangers.

                          I'm assuming if it got into the War Against the Pure book, its not 'untested', but that's just my theory. The amount of complaints piled at the feet of the Changing Breeds book imply heavily that it wasn't tested as thoroughly as one would have liked, at least in my mind. One's mileage may vary. I'm posting idea here, as clearly as I can manage, so other people can punch holes in them, effectively put them through preliminary testing, before I try them out in a game. Like so many others, I am polling the experts, while adding my scant knowledge to the information pool.

                          And I'm not saying a problem isn't there; I'm showing an alternate way of fixing it. Using a mechanic found in a different book(s).

                          On the subject of bonuses to Presence and Manipulation...in Werewolf: the Apocalypse, the characters could stay in Crinos for as long as they wanted. In Werewolf the Forsaken, they can't. The hybrid form is now a furious war form, designed for battle of the most brutal type...with some adjustment based on the breed's nature. The main point is that long conversations aren't likely in hybrid form, and social bonuses will go to waste, unless you are changing how long the various bloods are staying in hybrid forms.

                          ...I think I just found an issue in our translations. You appear to be using the Changing Breeds (the nWoD one) as a base, and the War Against the Pure as a reference. I'm using the War Against the Pure as a base, and the Changing Breeds (the nWoD one) as a reference.

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                          • #73
                            So in the order of importance...

                            Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                            ...I think I just found an issue in our translations. You appear to be using the Changing Breeds (the nWoD one) as a base, and the War Against the Pure as a reference. I'm using the War Against the Pure as a base, and the Changing Breeds (the nWoD one) as a reference.
                            Still, we want the better Changing Breeds by using WAtP mechanics, yes? So we should found common language.

                            Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                            First, which was last:
                            I wasn't actually trying to make a more powerful Uratha template. I was attempting to make more closer in line to the werewolf template, thus the baseline all the other shapechanger templates would be based on. I didn't see or make an Uratha template, so I really can't compare. That's a good point, though.
                            Baseline isn't be "all the Breeds should adhere to this". Based on baseline I made Form Points rules to give a balance to various Nahuals, but also variety. Having many different "were-species" and having each feel a bit unique is one of main targets of the Changing Breeds game, doesn't it?

                            Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                            I should have stated somewhere how important the balance between each of the species is to me. While I understand there is no way a were-humpback whale is going to balance with a were-sugar glider, when I make it, there is going to be an attempt. Nothing is more frustrating to me as a player than watching another player hogging all the action because my concept is weaker in dice modifiers, but not coolness. Nothing is more frustrating to me as a Storyteller than watching a solid, original character concept being upstaged by a loose-collection-of-rules-barely-tied-together-by-a-shoe-string-excuse-background. Sorry about that; really should have said something.
                            I agree with you, but unmodified WAtP Breeds template is too much the same. I also don't want to see some stats monstrosities as were in original Changing Breeds ( Land Titans and Storm Bears I look on you! ), but to encompass more animal souls than only most often predators ( like some cats and birds of prey ), you need some more flexible creation rules. Playing Changing Breeds with the book in one group can be were-gorilla, deer-blooded and mouse-changer. And they could come in conflict with mine Storm Bear in one story. Each should feel as unique as they "original species".

                            How want you to stay be true to animal souls they have and the feel of their animals, when between Storm Bear and mouse changer would be only 3 points of Strength modifiers bonus? Not too mentioned that mouse-changer should be weaker in it's hybrids and especially primal forms even compared to it's base human stats. In my solution maybe a mouse changer is Strength weaker, but is Dexterity deadly.

                            Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                            Yes, normal bears are hugely strong; the base grizzly from Blood of the Wolf puts them at Size 7, with a Strength of 5 and Stamina 4. Your ur-bears (not necessarily the storm bears, mind you) should be more so. Say, Size 8 and Strength 6 and keep Stamina 4 (individual variations would exist). It may not look like a huge difference, until you take into account its a five point scale base. Looking at it that way, Limiting the bear-blooded to a +4 strength may not look so out of hand, especially with the 9-again rule.
                            But there how many would have compared to it Grizzly-blooded and polar bear changer? Strength +3 and Strength +2. Oh, let's look on werewolves - They got Strength +3. Now our twice as big Polar Bears are weaker compared to rather swift wolfs in they War Form.

                            I understand you want to limit Attributes modifiers so they shouldn't be astronomically big. But looking on Uratha stats, I would say that modifiers up to +5 are possible for most powerful animal souls. That way werewolves would be best "middle class", and other shapechangers can shine in their categories. Strength +5 for War Form of changers that souls animal is weighting a 500 kg is in order, I think.

                            Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                            Inborn Aspects aren't suppose to have a cost, per the War Against the Pure, to which I agree. Its that one facet that separates one breed from the next. Its also how the Forsaken is separated from the rest of the Shapechangers. It includes the natural abilities to fly, enter the spirit world, have pack totems, and so on. In my project, its how I am separating (further) one species from the next. Aspects (the more generic style) has point costs, but I'm speaking of Inborn Aspects, much like Resurrection and Flight, could be more specific to a group, such as Land Titans and Laughing Strangers.
                            How you want to balance Aspects then, if you look for Breed to Breed balance? Our Storm Bears take 9-again, but were-elephants take 8-again? How to balance this?

                            Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                            On the subject of bonuses to Presence and Manipulation...in Werewolf: the Apocalypse, the characters could stay in Crinos for as long as they wanted. In Werewolf the Forsaken, they can't. The hybrid form is now a furious war form, designed for battle of the most brutal type...with some adjustment based on the breed's nature. The main point is that long conversations aren't likely in hybrid form, and social bonuses will go to waste, unless you are changing how long the various bloods are staying in hybrid forms.
                            Manipulation modifiers are also in Throwback and Dire Beasts forms that can be assumed on not limited time. Manipulation in War Beast form is really out of question, but is possible in other two hybrids forms and could be taken in consideration. That way a werehare and fox-blooded could have a very alluring Throwback forms, only to kill they victim in next turn they come to them.

                            Last edited by wyrdhamster; 06-21-2014, 12:36 PM.


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                            • #74
                              Shifting gears a little bit here:

                              Form points
                              I don't think there should be a form per given per dot of perception bonus. I think that 1 form point for a bonus up to +2 is the way to go. Its on the same level as an attribute point boost, so one-for-one isn't appropriate, and grants some leeway to adjust for certain breeds.

                              Natural weapons is another possible source of form points, and another area I encourage vagueness. 1 form point for lethal weapon up to +2 damage, and 0 form points for only base bashing damage. Right off the top of my head, I can't think of any animals without lethal weapons (other than certain breeds of domestic cows and pigs) but there might be some. So, this is back burner thing.

                              I am in favor of 'nixing the +1 minimum attribute boost while in hybrid form; there are too many species not too. So, no arguments there. Exceeding the 6 points total is where the friction comes from. But I'll see about working through that.

                              Inborn Aspects
                              I highly encourage using Inborn Aspects in place of "Favors", which was where a good chunk of the mess from the original book came from. Too many species got too much for free. 'Realism" over "balance". I'm no longer pitching the idea to counter your attribute choices, but to be used with them, as you see fit.

                              Examples
                              For Land Titans, I am using Massive as their inborn aspect. It makes their hybrid to primal forms a size 8, which does wonders for their health, and grants them a +1/+1 armor (so the hybrid armor is 2/2). Its a big boost, and solely for Land Titans.

                              For Uratha, I would use a similar idea, only for strength. Call it, Strength of the Mountain, and spin it that while Land Titans are bigger, the werebears are stronger, at least pound-for-pound. They are size 7 in primal form, size 8 in hybrid form, and have the 9-again rule for strength based dice pools. Which forms they can use the 9-again rule is...unset.

                              The Wing Folk would get the Flight Inborn Aspect from War against the Pure, naturally.

                              War Against the Pure has Resurrection for their cat breed, which I'm not sure if its suitable for the Changing Breeds' Bastet.

                              I was thinking about tweaking the Crawling Form and the Many Legged characteristic as Inborn Aspects for the Spinner-kin. Haven't got far with that idea yet.

                              I wanted some kind of luck base, fate twisted ability or host of abilities for the Laughing Strangers to draw upon. The idea of a collection of tiny powers that the were coyotes and foxes and crows could purchase as they increased in power and influence appealed to me. Exactly how, I'm now sure.

                              The Rokea would get Aquatic, which would grant bonus dexterity and movement. I think. I'm not sure.

                              And the Mokolé would get Form Dreaming, where they would get a number of dots equal to their [special advantage trait] to purchase special add on's.

                              I have no idea about the rest of them, yet.

                              Anyhow, their are just ideas, to help further develop your own ideas. Take or disregard at your leisure

                              An interesting note: cave bears, apparently, weren't any bigger or nastier than modern grizzlies polar bears, or the like. They topped out around 10 feet long and 1,000 pounds, which is right where the polar bear and the bigger brown beats get too. But reality isn't the World of Darkness...
                              Last edited by Gator the Unread; 06-22-2014, 10:59 PM. Reason: Did some reading

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                              • #75
                                Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                                Form points
                                I don't think there should be a form per given per dot of perception bonus. I think that 1 form point for a bonus up to +2 is the way to go. Its on the same level as an attribute point boost, so one-for-one isn't appropriate, and grants some leeway to adjust for certain breeds.

                                Natural weapons is another possible source of form points, and another area I encourage vagueness. 1 form point for lethal weapon up to +2 damage, and 0 form points for only base bashing damage. Right off the top of my head, I can't think of any animals without lethal weapons (other than certain breeds of domestic cows and pigs) but there might be some. So, this is back burner thing.
                                I could agree with this logic, as both Perceptions and Natural Weapons are much smaller in scope than Attributes Modifiers.

                                Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                                I am in favor of 'nixing the +1 minimum attribute boost while in hybrid form; there are too many species not too. So, no arguments there. Exceeding the 6 points total is where the friction comes from. But I'll see about working through that.
                                So always would War Beast form get's +1 to all Physical Attributes? I'm not sure I agree with this. Once again I making point of were mouses and tortoise-blooded. This kind beings screams for if not negative, at least non existing Physical Modifiers.

                                I'm not in camp of "it should be more than 6 Form Points", rather "they should be parallel to Uratha". Werewolves got enough bonuses and favors in all itself, they stats can be made as balance factor for other groups.

                                Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                                Inborn Aspects
                                I highly encourage using Inborn Aspects in place of "Favors", which was where a good chunk of the mess from the original book came from. Too many species got too much for free. 'Realism" over "balance". I'm no longer pitching the idea to counter your attribute choices, but to be used with them, as you see fit.

                                Examples
                                For Land Titans, I am using Massive as their inborn aspect. It makes their hybrid to primal forms a size 8, which does wonders for their health, and grants them a +1/+1 armor (so the hybrid armor is 2/2). Its a big boost, and solely for Land Titans.
                                First, you must understand that we aren't really working with Breads but with Species. Breeds are "famillies" of similiar shifters, but the Nahual is giving humans his powers. Not all Land Titans are Massive, not all Bastet are Killer Dexterous. Most of Species in Breed are, but not all. Those Inborn Aspects should be made on 1 on 1 basis, like with Kiths in Changling.

                                Or we go with Changling solution all the way - Breeds get you one Inborn Aspect, Species get you another. But there is problem like in CtL there - what if character concept could be in two different Breeds? Those groupse are more "fast and loose" than hard-waven ones so I would abstaine from this way of solving things.

                                Second, in Idigam Chronicles werewolves won't have natural armor 1/1 and I would abstain from them in Old Ones Chronicles. It's as much post GMC patch for the Changing Breeds, as the reworking the setting. Other modifications to Uratha shapeshifting rules are described in this spoiler.

                                Originally posted by Gator the Unread View Post
                                For Uratha, I would use a similar idea, only for strength. Call it, Strength of the Mountain, and spin it that while Land Titans are bigger, the werebears are stronger, at least pound-for-pound. They are size 7 in primal form, size 8 in hybrid form, and have the 9-again rule for strength based dice pools. Which forms they can use the 9-again rule is...unset.
                                You mean Ursara, I assume? The werebears aren't werewolves.



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