Alternate Kami Powers Advancement

Here is a tweak to the system by which Kami can advance and gain Powers or improve the Powers that they already possess. I will use these rules for my Awakening chronicle. Note that they have not been thoroughly playtested, and I may tweak the multipliers up a bit if I decide that this is a bit too cheap.

Normally, All Kami are required to pay for all but their first five points of Powers with Taints (and their first five points are covered by their one default Geasa). Unlike Gorgons, Fomori and Drones, they lack any other means to pay for their Powers because they do not have the Autonomy characteristic. This tends to leave Kami weaker in both the long and short run than Fomori or Gorgons, because taking large numbers of Taints is crippling.

I’ve thought about this a lot, and discussed it with some of my system-tweaking compatriots, and I have what I think might very well be an answer that still leaves Kami weaker coming out of the starting gate than other Possessed types, but that does allow them a chance to at le ast try to keep pace in the long run, yet is still distinct from the systems that the other Possessed types use. No, I’m not just giving them an Autonomy stat, since doing so goes against the grain of what Kami are conceptually. Rather, I’m letting them still pay for their Powers with Taints, but letting them tap a different resource to pay for what they don’t feel that they can cover with Taints: experience points.

Unlike other Possessed types, Kami can spend XP to buy new Powers or upgrade their existing Powers. As a general rule, any time a Kami is buying a new Power with a rating of 2 or above, the Kami is required to pay for at last part of the Power cost with Taints. Any Power points not covered by the Taints selected must be paid for with experience points at a value of 5 x the remaining Power cost. So in effect, Apart from the Taints cost they always pay the equivalent of what Garou would pay for out-of-auspice Gifts. Of course the Power: Spirit Gift still adds one level to any Gift being purchased, so Gifts do cost Kami a bit more than they do Garou to make up for the fact that Kami can mitigate the expense by taking Taints. When upgrading an existing Power (say, adding another damage die to Hazardous Breath), no additional Taints are required though they are permissible.

Just as Fomori can optionally pay Autonomy to eliminate or weaken some of their Taints, Kami may be able to do the same thing with experience points at the Storyteller’s discretion, at the same rate (5 x Taint value) as they can buy new Powers. Note that no Kami can buy off their initial Geas. Also, the Storyteller is well within his rights to reject any requests to buy off Taints either outright or specifically restricting a character from removing certain Taints, or setting a certain minimum number of Taint points that a given character can work their way down towards.

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2 Responses to “Alternate Kami Powers Advancement”

  1. .... Says:

    Another thing: Autonomy can easily be replaced for Kami with Willpower. Any powers that have the loss of Autonomy as a result (or taints) could easily have Autonomy swapped out with WP. Unless you think that would be too crippling or against the Kami vibe?

    • casewerk Says:

      Yeah, I have Kami roll Willpower where other things call for Autonomy, but I’m not comfortable with having them spend Willpower the way the other types spend autonomy. Feels anti-thematic to me.

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