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  • [2E Fan] Skalds

    Next update of 1E Legacy - this time, one really ancient, that I felt needed a bit more remodeling in 2E terms. On request of Hardwire99. Hope's you like it. Any changes from 1E version I can argument.

    Skalds
    Skalds are musicians and poets using their performance as conduit of their Art to sustain lore and giving hope for their people. More information are in Legacies: the Ancient, page 82.

    Origins
    Parent Path or Order: Acanthus, Free Council or Silver Ladder

    Nickname: Lore-singers

    Background: See Legacies: the Ancient, page 83.

    Appearance: See Legacies: the Ancient, page 82.

    Doctrine
    Prerequisites: Gnosis 2, Mind 2, Expression 2 and one of the following at 2 or higher Empathy, Occult or Persuasion.

    Initiation: Initiate needs to spend a month observing local events ( both Awakened and Sleeper ) and prepare composition about them. Different ‘schools’ adds motives connected to their dedication ( see Organization, below ). When initiate perform it before his tutor in the way that literally moves his soul, First Attainment is then self activating on new Skald.

    Organization: Skalds is one of oldest modern surviving Legacies, told to be as far reaching as Indo-European cultures they hail from. And like with those cultures, each and every had their own variant of what now is called commonly as Skalds. Modern Legacy is divided over two Parent Orders mostly highly reasoning with their statement and over 3 general ‘schools’ of Attainments members choose to learn from. For centuries, Skalds were associated with Silver Ladder, cultivating stories, magic and law of their homeland in their craft, highlighting ups and downs of whole cultures, rulers and heroes of those groups. But there were also many Legacy members still staying Nameless to greater Awakened society, dedicated solely to their Art and culture traditions. With rise of Free Council as global Order, many of those Nameless Skalds become Messengers for Assemblies rising around the world, becoming constant part of Libertine society. Their dedication to culture and Sleepers traditions also did work with new Orders goals. Some of Libertine Skalds become even modern rock stars or avant-garde poets.

    Second level of divide inside Legacy is over ‘schools’ of Optional Arcanum in Attainments, centering on secondary usage of their Art. Gealdor (from Old English, in Norse Galdr ) are ones dedicating their magic to appeasing old and new gods od Shadow Realm, concentrating on Spirits Arcanum. On the other hand, Orpheans are those of Skalds that apply their Art to help ghost of dead move to their final resting place by telling and solving their stories. And there are Homerists that want their people to remember past of their glory, by showing them parts of it with Time Attainments.

    Theory: Music and words reveals the Truth. As such, music touches the Supernal. To the Skalds, their music and their magic are the same. The Tapestry expresses itself through rhythm and words, and Skalds manipulate it with the same medium.

    Magic
    Ruling Arcanum: Mind

    Yantras: Playing appropriate song/saying poem (+1 ). Skalds are masters of the word and song – they can seamlessly blend in High Speech their music or poetry, often casting spells while doing their performance. Legacy members can use High Speech Yantra in any music or poetry they make without making it sound weird, but any Awakened will instantly sense usage of High Speech in performance.

    Oblations: Spending an hour memorizing an ancient epic, saga or song, or acquainting oneself with a variant telling or translation of one already known. Performing, generally either a recitation or musical performance, for one or two hours in public. Composing a new work, whether it be poetic or musical.

    Attainments
    Three ‘schools’ in Legacy teaches their versions of Attainments. All of them agree on Mind Arcanum parts of their Art – they only change on secondary goal of their magic. Once Skald has mastered Attainment with particular Optional Arcanum, all his next Attainments must use the same Optional Arcanum – even if he can change particular powers, as self-created. Each new Attainment is learned by making next great masterpiece with entwined magic in the life of Skald. If Attainment has casting time of scene, Skald can use it as part of his performance and anybody listening is target of the power.

    First Attainment: Preconcert
    Prerequisites:
    Initiation
    There takes only one short song or poem to understand moods of your audience. With using Concentration while performing before his listeners, he can use Mental Scan to get general mood of his audience. Skald can ask up to Mind dots of questions from Mental Scan spell.

    Optional 1: Spirit 1
    Concentration based Exorcist’s Eye.
    Optional 2: Death 1
    Instant cast Speak with the Dead with Duration equal to Death dots of Skald.
    Optional 3: Time 1
    Instant cast Perfect Timing, preparing Skald for best starting performance.

    Second Attainment: Soothe the Beast
    Prerequisites: Gnosis 2, Mind 2, Expression 3
    Skald can move people by his Art. Simply letting them to listen to his performance, he can use Emotional Urging on any listener of him, changing their minds to only one target state. It takes scene to use, but targeted listeners are under it’s with Advanced Duration equal to his Mind dots.

    Optional 1: Spirit 2
    Instant cast Command Spirit with Spirit dots as Potency.
    Optional 2: Death 2
    Instant cast Touch of the Grave for Duration equal to Death dots of Skald.
    Optional 3: Time 2
    Scene cast Postcognition on audience, with Potency as Time dots of Skald. Listeners are thinking they are imaging visions they see themselves by moving art of Skald.

    Third Attainment: Pride Goeth Before
    Prerequisites: Gnosis 4, Mind 3, Expression 3, Secondary Skill at 3
    Many times, it is not enough to make a person feel shame at their actions. The Hierarch may know the feelings to be false, or she may discard the emotion as a mere twinge of the conscience. When a person cannot be made to repent, it is the Skald’s duty to force that person to admit fault and accept punishment, or leave for the better of the Consilium. Using this Attainment requires the Skald to perform a critical song or poem, or to plan and put on a satirical mummery or a play. In some way, he must communicate to the intended target and to those around her the failings and flaws they should see. Target has changed one of his Aspirations to ‘Repent for mistakes’ for the Advanced Duration equal to Mind dots of Skald.

    Optional 1: Spirit 3
    Instant cast Place of Power with Potency as Spirit dots of Skald.
    Optional 2: Death 3
    Instant cast destroying Anchor connection of ghost, freeing him. Each Anchor is one Potency and all number is equal to Death dots of Skald.
    Optional 3: Time 3
    Instant cast Constant Presence with Advanced Duration as Time dots of Skald.

    Fourth Attainment: Hearing the Kind Piper
    Prerequisites:
    Gnosis 6, Mind 4, Expression 4
    Finally, some societies are too sick with corruption to do their own healing, or too weak-willed to correct the ill tendencies of neglectful superiors. When that is the case, the Skalds must drive people to cure themselves, to do what they are otherwise unwilling to do and begin the process of recovery. This Attainment requires an instant action to perform, and its power carries through an appropriate recitation or song. Woven through the art is a deeply concealed, strong mental suggestion.
    It works as instant cast Psychic Domination with +2 Reach option of total control on target for fulfilling command up to Advanced Duration in Mind dots of Skald. Commanding people in this way is not obvious. Observers perceive the singing or the poetry, and then the target of the Attainment acts. Even Mage Sight does not reveal the influence of Hearing the Kind Piper.

    Optional 1: Spirit 4
    Instant cast Spirit Summons with +1 Reach simple command option and Duration equal to Spirit dots of Skald.
    Optional 2: Death 4
    Instant cast Exorcism with Potency equal to Death dots of Skald.
    Optional 3: Time 4
    Instant cast Chronos Curse with Potency equal to Time dots of Skald.

    Fifth Attainment: Catharsis
    Prerequisites:
    Gnosis 8, Mind 5, Expression 4, Secondary Skill at 4
    Skalds Art move listeners so much, it literally change who they are. It works as Psychic Reprogramming cast on his audience, with Potency equal to his Mind dots. Changes are the same for each listener.

    Optional 1: Spirit 5
    Scene cast Shape Spirit, by changing story of the being. It has Potency equal to Spirit dots of Skald.
    Optional 2: Death 5
    Instant cast Destroy Ghost, reverse of Create Ghost. Duration is equal to Death dots, and Skalds believe they freeing damned souls by this.
    Optional 3: Time 5
    Instant cast Temporal Summoning with Advanced Duration and Potency equal to Time dots of Skald.

    EDIT: Reason why I added Silver Ladder and Free Council as Orders to this 2E update -
    Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
    Legacies in 2E can have two Parent Orders - 2E corebook have 11th Question as example. In 1E they were sole Guardians Legacy - in 2E they are both Guardians and Mysterium, split across Orders factions inside.

    Silver Ladder really works for Skalds as Legacy is based on oral singers of Scandinavia and Celts - both groups where 'law sustainers' ( by spreading original culture ) and making sure their people remembered 'magic' of their forefathers. That is Ladders motto of 'Magic is Humanity Birthright', right there. Citation from Wikipedia on Bards: 'employed by a patron (such as a monarch or noble), to commemorate one or more of the patron's ancestors and to praise the patron's own activities' - it's exactly what more humble Silver Ladder would do with his life, being more voice behind the throne.

    Really, in 1E Skalds Legacy is not having Silver Ladder as Parent Order only on assumptions of writer for Legacies: The Ancient that Tearchs are only power hungry politicians, that is totally not true since their Order book.

    Interesting fact - Skalds Legacy can easily be one of main ones magical practices of Indo-European civilization ( on which beliefs Mage is made as game ) so Legacy should have really long story, almost as Thread Cutters from the same book. From Wikipedia:'In other Indo-European societies, the same function was fulfilled by skalds, rhapsodes, minstrels and scops, among others. A hereditary caste of professional poets in Proto-Indo-European society has been reconstructed by comparison of the position of poets in medieval Ireland and in ancient India in particular.'
    Last edited by wyrdhamster; 01-02-2017, 05:55 PM.


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  • #2
    The first attainment Optionals for Death and Spirit are kind of pointless because of the utility attainments for Death and Spirit.

    Death 2 Optional why isn't it Command Ghost? That seems like it would make more sense than pulling ephemeral objects out of Twilight.

    The Mind 3 attainment is mimicking a 4th dot Mind effect so it's not legal.
    Spirit 3, what's the point of raising or lowering the Gauntlet for one turn? It's great if it's actually useful, but I don't see it.
    Death 3 Potency should be damage done to 1 anchor, number of targets is -always- determined by Scale. "...all number is equal to Death dots of Skald" doesn't actually make any sense in English, please clarify, all number of what?

    4th Mind attainment has too many Reach spent to be legal, you'll have to remove the +2 for total control or the +1 for Instant activation. Also there's no Veiling effect active here so Mage Sight -would- detect the influence of the attainment.
    Spirit 4 Spirit Summon, it will never work on a spirit above Rank 2 just so you know.
    Death 4 Exorcism, again why make it different than Spirit's option, why not use Ghost Summon?
    Time 4 All the other Time optionals I could see some rationale for, but what's the point of this one? How does it help them actually act as Bards to slow their audience down?

    Mind 5, you already tried that with Mind 3, at least at this level it actually works.
    Spirit 5 With 1 Reach spent for Advanced Duration and 1 Reach spent for Instant activation Shape Spirit can be made to last all day you're short selling the attainment.
    Death 5: Duration makes no sense at all, destruction is almost always Lasting. It makes even less sense if they believe they're "freeing" ghosts, and the attainment's effect can wear off. Is that like being a ghost out on parole? Also, by the time a Mage has Death 5 they know ghosts and souls aren't the same thing so unless they're really deluded they wouldn't believe they're freeing damned souls, they're just destroying ghosts.

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    • #3
      Attainment 4 has 3 free reached, it is a level 2 so a reach at 2, 3, &4. The instant cast is a +1 reach and then the +2 for the specific reach +1 Advanced Duration =4 reaches.

      For the death 2 spell there needs to be a command ghost spell, I was looking in the death section and there isn't a command ghost. You could probably make one with the ruling practice.
      Last edited by Hardwire99; 01-01-2017, 11:01 PM.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Hardwire99 View Post
        Attainment 4 has 3 free reached, it is a level 2 so a reach at 2, 3, &4. The instant cast is a +1 reach and then the +2 for the specific reach +1 Advanced Duration =4 reaches.

        For the death 2 spell there needs to be a command ghost spell, I was looking in the death section and there isn't a command ghost. You could probably make one with the ruling practice.
        You're right, I did the math wrong on the Reach for 4.

        Death 2 Command Ghost would work exactly like Command Spirit just for ghosts instead of spirits, I'm guessing they didn't bother to duplicate it because of word count.

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        • #5
          I was showing the math to back you up, Attainment 4 has 3 free reaches and has used 4 reaches, instant casting, Advanced Duration, +2 special reach. So it needs to lose one reach.

          IMHO I feel that none of the Attainment should be instant cast as it is the music/poem that is the median for the magic, and that isn't instant. It is the fact that the listener is getting caught up in what he is listening to that weaves the spell.
          Last edited by Hardwire99; 01-02-2017, 05:00 AM.

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          • #6
            Answering from phone, so sorry for short form and mistakes. From last till first:
            1. Why using Instant casting - with Legacy Attainments, Scene/Ritual casting takes your Ritual Casting time on your Gnosis. Saying poem/playing song is most of the time at most few minutes. Ritual Castng of this kind is only on Gnosis 8+ so much better is making Attainments using Instant casting with music/poem Yantra.


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            • #7
              2. As to Death 2 Optional - Orpheans are not ghost using necromancers. They are storytellers telling tales of ghost to ease their passing to Afterlife. So no Command Ghosts as it's counter to subLegacy idea. Chosen taking items from Twilight, as I imagine that story of particular ghost could need to resolved by using his weapon in ravange or giving item to decendents, for example.


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              • #8
                Ritual casting a Legacy Attainment always takes a scene/hour regardless of Gnosis. Which works for this Legacy if they're telling an entire story. Theatre plays almost always takes longer than that to perform.


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                • #9
                  Okay, I will remake Attainments to almost all using one scene as activation.


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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tessie View Post
                    Ritual casting a Legacy Attainment always takes a scene/hour regardless of Gnosis. Which works for this Legacy if they're telling an entire story. Theatre plays almost always takes longer than that to perform.
                    It always takes a scene.

                    Yes I understand that, my point is that you Thematically the Skalds use the story/music as the power of their magic. Lets take emotion control. A rock band can whip their audience into a lather and get them to become violent rioting and causing general mayhem. This isn't done instantaneous or even in the first half hour. The emotion starts small and then builds. So thematically the taking a scene to happen fits, now is this useful in a fight, by all means no, but a fight isn't there the true power/threat of this Legacy sits.

                    Civil unrest is a huge concern for both the mundane and magical communities, music, singing, Poetry and theatrics has such sway over emotions that they can calm the irate or enflame the calm heart. Yes the Skalds main purpose historically is to record history and preserve heritage but they also practice mass control.

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                    • #11
                      My view on the different 'schools' of the Skalds.

                      Mind: Everything in this school should deal with manipulation of the emotions. So all Attainment should deal with controlling, instilling and fostering the growth of emotions.

                      Death/Spirit: Everything in this school should deal with drawing Ghosts/Spirits in or driving them away. So all of the Attainments should deal with compelling, repelling, and interacting withe Ghosts/Spirits.

                      Time: Everything in this school should deal with manipulating events to happen at the exact time, prolonging/reducing the event. So all Attainment should deal with exact timing, time looping and duration of things happening at the event.

                      I even feel that there is a place for prime in here as crowds of any size produce huge amounts to energy and that energy is just looking for a place to go. But that may be cramming to much into one Legacy.


                      If this requires the creation of new spells or abilities then that is what it takes. Like to affect the duration of things that happen at the concert may require the development of a spell that adds the Advanced Duration reach to other spells.
                      Last edited by Hardwire99; 01-02-2017, 08:52 AM.

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                      • #12
                        I rewrote the following, rearranging the sentences, hoping to make it flow better. and criticism and or correction are welcome.

                        Initiation: There are two ways to earn your way into the Skalds. Either the Initiate needs to spend a month observing local events (both Awakened and Sleeper) and prepare a composed piece about what he has learned or he can recite his magical lineage of the last century. There are four different ‘schools’ (see Organization, below) that the initiate can join, each with its own motives and beliefs. If the initiate’s performance literally moves his tutor’s soul the initiate may join, choosing one of the schools. The first Attainment is then self-activating on the new Skald. Once a school is chosen it may not be changed and that sets the Attainments that they have available to them.

                        Organization: The Skalds is one of the oldest surviving Legacies, records show their lineage to reach as far back as Indo-European era, recording the history of their respective cultures. Cultural differences aside the Skalds were responsible to record and pass on this history in song and poem. Despite more efficient methods of recording history the Skalds have survived. In Modern times the Skalds span two Parent Orders, the Silver Ladder and the Free Council, each with their own views as to how this history is preserved. The Silver ladder places emphasis on the social aspect of the culture, its rulers, heroes, laws and magical community. They record the Highs and the lows of the culture highlighting the growth and progress. This ridged outlook, though culturally responsible, was not very popular as it told dry a boring story and many of the Skalds remained as members of the Nameless Order. With the rise of the Free Council the most of the Skalds that were Nameless felt that the found a home. They became travelers and spreading their culture to other lands, this lent itself to these Skalds becoming Messengers for Assemblies, a valued member of the Libertine society.

                        Within the Skalds of these orders three schools formed each dealing with different aspects of their culture. The Galdr regaled accounts of the old and new gods, furthering the goals of the entities of the Shadow realm, dealing with spirits and the Spirit Arcanum. The Orpheans deal with the dead and tout stories of their glories, spreading stories of fallen heroes. They deal with Ephemeral entities using the Death Arcanum. Lastly there are the Homerists that tell the Saga of the people and all that they have endured, their purview is time employing the Time Arcanum.

                        Theory: Music and words reveals the Truth. As such, music touches the Supernal. To the Skalds, their music and their magic are one in the the same. The Tapestry expresses itself through rhythm and words, and Skalds manipulate it with the same medium.

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                        • #13
                          Some things in your points, Hardwire:
                          1. Skalds are not revolutionaries in artist bohema crowd - that' Society of Pygmallion' stick. Skalds are cultures lore-keepers and goverment critics.
                          2. From first point comes they should not 'initiate bedlam', Changeling style - more, making subtle changes in mood of crowd and moving those emotions those that really needed. Revolutions just kill people, they do not uncover mistakes of goverment. Repenting goverment official is much more working in showing mistakes.
                          3. Because of 1 and 2 I used original 1E Attainments as changinig Aspirations to those that are marked by the performance. Highing emotions will not go to this goal.


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                          • #14
                            Ghosts & Skalds - It's logical for the Bard Legacy to seek their Art as way to solve 'ghost story', and by this, letting them to move on the other side. Memento Mori and all that. Illogical is to expect Skalds to be experts in all ghost summons - for those, just make 'evil Necormancers' Legacy of Moros mages. It's also why 1E Spirits Attainments of Skalds did not work in my POV - but I can see 'apeasing Old Gods' engle for them in 2E.

                            Every Legacy has a specified theme, from what their Attainments should come - not only being 'cool powers to have'. Skalds are storytellers that want to make world a bit better, with hope - and this is much more 'solving ghosts problems on Earth' than 'being perfecy ghost summoner'.


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                            • #15
                              Time & Skalds - Their idea is that Bard is making people relive 'Lost Glory' of their people. It starts with showing visions od the past for audience, but ending with literal summonig glorius past of people. Imagine Homerist Skald that goes to place of Troy buried, perform Homer's 'Illiad' - and by this very performance rebuilding Troy itself, stone by stone!


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