Posts Tagged ‘wta’

Kami Powers, Rorqual Edition!

December 6, 2017

It’s time for me to post more content for the Possessed. Yay? The original source of the Powers below is World of Darkness: Blood-Dimmed Tides (pp. 14-15), but the mechanics needed a little tidying and point values, so here is my adaptation of them to the rules in Possessed: a Player’s Guide. They were originally intended for Rorqual (a specialized form of Kami cetaceans), but may have broader applications. For reasons that I will cover below, two out of three of these particular powers needed considerable adaptation to become playable. Note that my text uses the terms Gnosis and Steep interchangeably, a nod towards the Rorqual themselves.

Breach (5) – Only Kami may take this Power, and it is all but unknown outside the rare cetacean Rorqual. The Kami can make a spectacular leap from the water that has a purifying effect on the waters around her from toxins such as crude oil, or even supernaturally active toxins. When she reenters the water, she may spend as much of her carried Steep as she likes; the first point spent cleanses the area covered by the Kami’s actual splash, and to the depth that her splash down carries her. Additional points of Steep increase the area of effect by half the radius of the first, with a maximum range out to line of sight. While supernaturally active toxins can be cleansed, the area of effect is reduced to one fifth in such cases. Naturally, a Rorqual will only use such a Power as a last resort, as they do not consider the energy they carry to be theirs to spend.

Song of the Sea (3) – Only Kami may take this Power. The Kami sings a sad, haunting alien melody to coax the power of the Grottoes or a Caern into their body. It usually takes about ten minutes for each point of Gnosis that they absorb. This may be a long, slow process but it is considerably faster than conventional meditation.

Steep Reservoir (6, 7, 8, 9, or 10) – Only Kami may take this Power. This character is functionally a living Caern, able to collect and store vast amounts of Gnosis from undersea Grottoes or terrestrial Caerns, well beyond the limits normally imposed by their own Gnosis score (the Rorqual refer to it as Steep), and is capable of transmitting it to other supernatural creatures (Shapechangers, Changelings and Mages being the most likely recipients) via touch. Supernatural creatures can be granted up to 5 points of Gnosis (which are converted upon transmission to Glamour, Chi or Quintessence etc, if necessary for the recipient in question). This Power comes in several tiers, with the maximum available tier a function of the Kami’s overall body mass. Smaller Rorqual in the form of porpoises or dolphins, for example, can hold 100 points of Steep. Certain larger Rorqual are theoretically capable of holding five or ten times as much (another reason not to restrict such leviathans to NPC status). A dolphin sized character can store up to 100 Steep for a cost of 6, a small one like a Beluga (up to perhaps 15 feet, comparable in weight to a hippo if you want a terrestrial equivalent) can store 200 at a cost of 7, a moderate sized whale like an Orca or Minke whale (or an elephant, which is of similar weight) 300 at a cost of 8, a large whale like a Humpback, Grey or Sperm whale (say, 60’ length) 500 at a cost of 9 and a huge one like a Finback or Blue Whale 1000 at a cost of 10. No extant natural terrestrial animal is large enough to accommodate the 9 or 10 point versions of this Power, though not all Kami are derived from terrestrial animals. Obviously, Spirit Ties is a prerequisite for this Power. (This power was extrapolated from World of Darkness: Blood-Dimmed Tides, pp. 14-15, and is not explicitly named there. I codified the specific tiers, within the overall range found in the source material).

Note: the Human Form power from WoD: BDT is not included here because it is just a specific instance of the existing Power: Transformation.

Note on Breach: I modified this Power’s area of effect considerably. The original scope of this Power’s reach was laughably small – it seems to me this came from the writers not having really thought about the scale of bodies of water, even though Blood-Dimmed Tides repeatedly reminds readers just how vast the ocean is. One cubic foot of water makes up 7.48 gallons and would cost 2 points of Gnosis to cleanse in this way. A theoretical Blue Whale Rorqual with a Steep Reservoir of up to 1000 points, if they blew the entire thing, could purify 5000 gallons of water.

An Olympic-size swimming pool is approximately 50 m or 164 feet in length, 25 m or 82 feet in width, and 2 m or 6 feet in depth. These measurements create a surface area of 13,454.72 square feet and a volume of 88,263 cubic feet. The pool has 660,253.09 gallons of water. An adult humpback whale is up to 52 feet in length, a sperm whale might reach 60 feet and a blue whale might be 100 feet long and weigh in excess of 200 tons. 5000 gallons of water amounts to 668.44 cubic feet of water, so compare: 88,263/668.44 = 132.043. It would cost 1000 points of Gnosis to purify less than 1/100th of an olympic sized swimming pool (the entire pool is only half-again as long as the whale’s own body!) Volume = side length cubed, so to determine the size of a cube that would occupy 668.44 cubic feet of water, we only need its cubed root: 8.74 feet. So 1000 gnosis can only purify enough water to fill a cube with sides 8.74 feet long. That’s… pitiful. According to this link, a typical suburban swimming pool with 18’ x 36’ in dimensions, 3 feet deep at one end and 8 at the other would hold 26,658.72 gallons of water. So purifying a volume of water too small to even hold the body of a moderate sized Rorqual (say, a grey whale @ 49 feet in length or a humpback @ 52) would require 5332 Gnosis to purify. The splash from the whale’s actual breach probably displaces more water than that. 1000 Gnosis would only be able to purify 1000 gallons of water if it is supernaturally poisoned – a big rig trailer can move 18 portable water tanks of 1k gallons each.

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So The Votes Are In…

July 25, 2014

Okay, so the collective wisdom of the backing Wyrm fans has spoken. My vote didn’t win, not that I expected it to. Based on the campaigns (rather than necessarily the characters themselves), the results here were two out of three predictable, at least insofar as, for what it’s worth, I saw two of them coming a mile off. One of those predictable results, Ian Robertson the Money Magus, is a very interesting addition to the cWoD canon.

The result that surprised me was The Unrevealed. So this guy never revealed who his nominee was, and he never really campaigned other than a really generic last-minute post halfway through the voting period, after the bulk of the votes had already been cast, but he got the #3 spot. I’m not quite sure what this means, but my best guess is that folks voted for The Unrevealed mostly as a “meh. None of the above” reaction as much as anything else. Most of the nominees weren’t especially exciting, so I can completely understand that particular reaction. It may have been some other motivator that drove this success, but I’m not sure what.

I totally saw the #1 coming, but the main thing I take away from this candidate’s success is that I’m apparently completely out of touch with the criteria by which the plurality of voters made their selection for a candidate. All I cared about was, to quote my prior post, “their merits as a possible board member to be added to the World of Darkness’ canon”. Clearly the voters and I had very different interpretations of said merits, because had I ranked my personal preferences in order from most to least desirable, this candidate would have been in the next-to-last slot. I’m okay with having a difference of opinions with other gamers however, since differing opinions over minutiae can be described as the very soul of fandom.  I’m not going to shout “WrongBadFun!!1!” or whatever, but it’s also safe to say that candidate #1 is quite safe from existing or appearing in any game over which I am the Storyteller.

On the Pentex Board Nominees

July 16, 2014

Okay, most of you that would actually read my blog are already aware of the W20 Book of the Wyrm Kickstarter. One very interesting aspect of this kickstarter is the election to place three new members on the Pentex board of directors. There are some really interesting nominees, and some… whose existence I will cheerfully replace with preexisting canonical board members or new ones of my own devising should they win. I’ll break down my take on each nominee here, strictly based on their merits as a possible board member to be added to the World of Darkness’ canon, which the most important thing we’re doing with regards to these guys and what I’ve seen of their campaign thus far. None of this is a value judgment on the creator of said character, just what I think of having them appear in a Werewolf: the Apocalypse supplement as members of the Pentex Board. (more…)

A Few Old NBish Bits

June 18, 2014

As a follow up to my last post, I thought that I would share a few old screenshots that I still had lying around somewhere from back in my old NB days or just following its demise. Most of the bits I’ll post here, I held on to for humor value, though a few I kept for more sentimental reasons. NB was a weird and wild place, and I enjoyed it… most of the time. Most but not all of the below are bits of out-of-character conversation. Due to the format of this blog, quite a few of these images are displayed at a smallish size. You should be able to right click on them and view their full size versions, however. None of the names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Below, the ever-awesome ST Keith shared with me something that a player (who was running a Demon: the Fallen character) had asked him via private message…

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Apparently, Georgia’s got some, ah, interesting rules regarding their driver’s licenses:

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Sometimes, a player would post in the wrong window, with embarrassing results:

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New Bremen, Closed For 10 Years?

June 17, 2014

Today is the 10th anniversary of the closure of the venerable New Bremen Moderated Chat, which for what few whippersnappers out there may actually stumble over this, was a Java-based chat environment that was a cousin to the venerable MUDs, something like a text-based MMO for roleplaying in White Wolf’s World of Darkness (now known as the cWoD, and revived a couple of years back thanks to Onyx Path). I played there from their opening on April 22, 2000, bringing the original iteration of Linda Lee in there from the get go, and I had the pleasure and honor to be the head of its Werewolf team that ran the final scene that closed the doors on its final day. A June 17th, 2004 closure was planned, but the final scene rolled over past midnight Pacific time and into the following day before we finally wrapped and pulled the plug, so I stick with the 18th and do the same with this post, on general principle.

On January 27, 2002 I became an assistant ST there, working with the inimitable Joy Nelson and covering Kinfolk and the Media in New Bremen’s Mortals team, then in May-June of that year I was promoted to full ST, kept Kinfolk as part of my portfolio and was moved over to the Werewolf team assigned to cover the SF, GoF and ShL tribes. By August I had been reassigned to open the door to the antagonists area of WtA (I kept Kinfolk for a while too, and coordinated the Broken Caves sept’s sub-team for a while. In September 2003, I picked up the mantle of head Werewolf ST and remained in that capacity for the duration. Looking back, I can see a great many things that I could have done better of course, but that is of course the nature of hindsight. For example, character creation was too restrictive by the end as an intended remedy to their wild and wooly early days’ utter havoc, and the way that Lore abilities worked was a bit much, and I’d like to have made PCs rather than plot more of a driver to the Malfean Quest storyline; though I did try to strike a balance there, I do think my approach was a bit off that center. Still, it was fun doing it and the players that participated in the quest as well as the last stand of the Mended Past sept did tell me that they enjoyed the experience, which I suppose is the final measure of my team’s efforts. That was also my departure from STing in a moderated chat environment, a decision that I do not regret. Still, fond and often bemusing or aggravating memories abound.

ImageYes, I still have that old GIF that served as the logo for my old and long-lost Geocities New Bremen ST page. That’s because I still am the Wyrm. And yes, of course I backed the BotW20 kickstarter. So should you, but only if you like cool things. You do like cool things, don’t you?

In honor of the closure of New Bremen, I will post a few items from the end, and over the next few days I’ll post some screenshots of particularly memorable or humorous moments from (or talking about) NB that either I or others felt the need to save, some old NB-related artwork and so on. (more…)

Garou Astrology

May 19, 2012

The Garou Lunar Calendar

This text is a slightly modified version of this page’s information, which does directly follow the text of Rage Across The Heavens and the Player’s Guide to Garou, just adding a little bit more detail on certain items.

Unsurprisingly, the animistic culture of the Garou measures the passage of time differently than humanity at large. This article will give you, the player, a basic idea of how it works and how it can affect your character. This information is taken from Rage Across the Heavens, and is thus ‘canon’ material. While there are no direct game effects, you can use this to flesh out your Garou’s history by giving him or her a more direct connection to the stars. One thing to remember is that unlike Humanity, Garou have concrete evidence of the influence of celestial bodies on their lives and personality: Luna demonstrably governs their connection to their Rage, which burns hottest when the moon is full and wanes with the moon’s descent into darkness. Hence it makes sense that they will lend credence to the idea that other celestial bodies have a measure of influence over their lives as well. (more…)

When Pigs Fly

January 6, 2012

If I ever play an oWoD game where there is a Grondr character, I will have to insist that the character learns the Gift: Spirit of the Bird.

Just sayin’.

Awakening: The Battle of Cinder Cone

December 20, 2011

This sequence is a cutscene related to chapters 2-3 of The Enemy of My Enemy, the second story of the Awakening Chronicle.

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Joseph Chases-the-Dream rejoined his pack after consulting with the mixed task force of mages, Garou and Kinfolk that had volunteered to strike at the witches beneath Cinder Cone and found his pack alpha Mingan Leaps-Like-cougar, the Wyrmfoe of the Sept of the Boiling Earth, addressing the several gathered packs. Joseph noted that a ways off from the group stood a tall, ragged bespectacled white man with close-cropped hair: Marcus Falcon’s-Resolve, who had been Ostracized. The other Garou present were ignoring his existence, neither welcoming nor forbidding him: he did not exist in their eyes, and Joseph blinded himself to the disgraced Silver Fang as well.

Mingan spoke: “We of the Warpath shall be the head of the arrow aimed at their hearts. Spear Dancers, follow immediately behind us, and the rearguard shall be the Black Wings,” Leaps instructed them as he reviewed the plan of attack. He gave each pack their assignments of which portions of Cinder Cone’s peak each was to sweep clear.

“The Wyrmbringers have numbers. They have high ground, and distance, and they are armed with silver ammunition,” Leaps stated gravely, “We must advance up a steep slope to fight them, and we have no cover other than what we ourselves can create. (more…)

Return of the Expanded Powers & Taints

November 10, 2011

This is yet another in my rather extensive series of expanded powers & taints for possessed characters in Werewolf: the Apocalypse. This time, I have converted a number of the Kami powers found in the first edition Werewolf Storyteller’s Handbook. Now that this series has come to this point, I am also in process of compiling all of my expanded powers & taints to a single document, which I will make available at this blog. Watch this space. 🙂

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Awakening: Those Left Behind

November 9, 2011

(This post focuses on what’s happening to some of the various NPCs in the Awakening chronicle in the time around the end of The Enemy of My Enemy, Chapter I)

It had been a bit of a strange day for Joseph Chases-the-Dream, all told.

After putting together a Litany Q&A for Amrita and having to call that to a premature conclusion, he had been left alone with Linda, the attractive yet mousy Kin woman that had recently been adopted into the tribe even though she was a creepy white girl formerly associated with the Black Spiral Dancers. (more…)