Author Topic: Custom Templates  (Read 40797 times)

Offline Sanctaphrax

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2012, 10:31:23 PM »
Sure, if you know it's Fae. What's Fae, though? And do they look how you expect? For example, Harry knew the whole thing about Fae and Iron but might as well not have when meeting the Gruffs...because he didn't know these weird goat-people were Fae. The same is true for Winter Ogres (who look like Yetis) or centaurs, or goblins. Or, indeed, for most kinds of Fae, really, especially given their Glamours and ability to appear how they like. Little folk like Toot-toot, matching as they do the popular image of a faerie, might get +4 out of it...but they'd be just about the only ones.

I always found this interpretation pretty iffy. Harry never does any research to discover that enemy X is a faerie, and I wouldn't expect PCs to do that research either.

Issues like this one are part of the reason I prefer not to use The Catch as written.

Quote from: Hick Jr
Edit- Also, allowing the GM to adjudicate exactly what bypasses the Catch really only works if you and your GM can agree on what exactly constitutes "extreme physical harm". Standing next to a grenade, yes. Small caliber gunfire, no. On the other hand, this is an excellent story element- The bad guy figures out he's facing an orc, and starts in with the heavy artillery.

Edit secundus- Rereading Lords and Ladies, would Thunderbolt or Meteoric iron be an acceptable catch? I find it to suitably flavorful, but I'm fairly sure it would only provide a +2.

With Supernatural Toughness, a grenade at close range will not inflict extreme physical harm. Likely won't even inflict mild physical harm.

(If you have 8 stress boxes and armour 2, a weapon 4 grenade needs to hit by a margin of 7 to inflict a mild. And that's a ridiculously huge margin.)

And meteoric iron sounds like a decent Catch to me.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2012, 10:36:20 PM by Sanctaphrax »

Offline Deadmanwalking

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2012, 11:01:45 PM »
I always found this interpretation pretty iffy. Harry never does any research to discover that enemy X is a faerie, and I wouldn't expect PCs to do that research either.

He did with the Gruffs (via Bob...but that's how he does most of his research). He has a few other times, too. Also, especially as time goes on, he's become more and more of a specialist in this area. Knowing a creature's Catch after having dealt with it extensively is pretty normal, after all.

Offline Hick Jr

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2012, 11:11:03 PM »
The idea was that standing on a grenade would bypass the toughness completely. But i understand your point. Do you agree with The Catch rebate on thunderbolt iron? Should it be +3 instead?

Also, how do you use The Catch, if not as written?
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Offline Sanctaphrax

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2012, 11:33:14 PM »
+2 sounds fair.

I prefer to use Limitation instead of The Catch.

(click to show/hide)

By directly asking "how often will this matter" Limitation makes it much harder to game the system. Plus it accommodates a greater variety of Powers and weaknesses. So it can replace The Catch, Human Form, and Item of Power all at once.

Offline nick012000

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #19 on: December 28, 2012, 01:31:08 PM »
Out of curiosity, has anyone written up a PC ghost template, using the information from Ghost Story? Playing someone like Sir Stuart seems entirely doable, IMO; they still maintain enough self and Free Will to be viable PCs. The main problem I'm seeing is figuring out how their magic works, what with them using memories to fuel them. Some sort of Feeding Dependency, or something?
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Offline Sanctaphrax

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #20 on: December 28, 2012, 11:44:32 PM »
I've got a ghost PC. For Powers, they have the Spirit Form rewrite, Possession, and Swift Transition. Swift Transition might not be totally in keeping with the info from GS, but it was in the RPG books.

Really, the Spirit Form rewrite covers almost everything. That's what it was written for, after all.

I don't really use Templates, but I could write one up for ghosts easily enough.

Offline SunlessNick

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #21 on: December 29, 2012, 03:09:07 AM »
I have three homebrew vampire courts (another Grey, a Green, and a Pale) here:  http://www.jimbutcheronline.com/bb/index.php/topic,25833.msg1100593.html#msg1100593

A few people added ideas for others in there too.

Offline Sanctaphrax

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #22 on: December 29, 2012, 08:29:43 AM »
If I'm gonna be updating the list anyway, I might as well write that ghost template.

GHOST

Sometimes, when somebody dies, they leave behind a ghost. Ghosts are immaterial, and appear to be the dead people that created them. In truth, though, ghosts are simply soulless replicas of the people they seem to be. All ghosts have negative Refresh and lack free will...unless there's something unusual going on.

A ghost is made out of memories and emotions, and so does not interact with the world the way someone made out of meat would. Ghosts can fly, teleport, see without light, and so on.

Most ghosts never interact much with the world of physical things. They have their own immaterial problems to deal with, and they can't manifest physically unless they're insane. But again, there are exceptions.

Musts: Ghosts are dead, and their High Concepts must reflect this fact. Ghosts with positive Refresh must also provide some sort of reason that they possess free will...what reasons are acceptable is up to the group, but the default is that the "ghost" is actually a soul that has been sent back from the afterlife for some reason.

Every ghost must take the rewritten Spirit Form Power with the Spiritual Body and Unrealistic Spirit Form upgrades.

Options: Ghosts can take a wide variety of Powers, including but not limited to Strength, Speed, Toughness, Recovery, Possession, Spiritual Parasite, Inhabit, Spiritual Symbiote, and Swift Transition. Ghosts with Swift Transition should take the No Mortal Home upgrade. Ghosts may also purchase whatever Power upgrades they like, with the exception of Projected Spirit Form. Ghosts with the Optional Spirit Form upgrade are invariably at least mildly insane.

Some ghosts are monstrous in form, either because they're the ghosts of monsters or because the time since they died has changed them. Such ghosts should take Creature Features and other Powers to represent their monstrous abilities.

Some ghostly cannibals consume the memory-flesh of other ghosts. Such ghosts should take a variant of Blood Drinker to represent that ability.

Ghosts who were spellcasters or otherwise magical in life may keep the Powers they had while alive.

Important Skills: Conviction

Minimum Refresh Cost: -4

Examples:
(click to show/hide)

Offline johntfs

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #23 on: December 29, 2012, 02:08:07 PM »
JADE COURT VAMPIRES

The vampires of Asia are known as the Jade Court.  These beings share many elements of the Red, White and Black courts but have a different flavor than other vampires.  Generally, vampires of the Jade are divided into two categories, Yin and Yang.  Yin vampires are creatures of strength and toughness, beings who strike fear into their prey.  Yang vampires, on the other hand, are beings of swiftness and energy, who easily bounce back from injuries and control their prey through lust and pleasure.  Despite the stark differences between the two aspects of the Jade Court, their is little conflict between them based solely on their nature.  A Yin vampire could easily work with a vampire of Yang and many do, forming teams and partners ships based on exploiting the alliance of their contradictory natures.

Which isn't to say there is no conflict within the Jade Court.  There is plenty.  The Court is divided into a multitude of major and minor houses and clans, each maneuvering through intrigue, stealth, manipulation or outright violence to expand their power and influence, usually at the expense of another house or clan.  The recent
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will doubtless given the Court new opportunities to expand and one can expect to see the Jade Court vampires bringing their hungers to new lands ripe for exploitation.

Despite seeming human, Jade Court vampires gain new members by adoption and conversion instead of natural birth.  They tend to be highly selective of their potential offspring, for the deeds of their "children" will reflect glory (or shame) onto their "parents."  A poor selection of a child results not only the destruction of that child, but often the parent who created the child.  Thus, prior to investing in the creation of a child, a Jade Court vampire will often watch their prospective recruit for months or years.  Some more traditional clans maintain covert breeding programs of their servitor humans and select only the most perfect specimens for elevation to the Court.

Important Skills

Alertness, Athletics, Deceit, Fists, Intimidation, Lore, Scholarship(especially languages) Weapons, other physical skills. 

Minimum Refresh (-7)

All Jade Court vampires have certain abilities, though those abilities tend to differ whether they are Vampires of Yin or Yang.

Blood Drinker (-1)
Claws(-1)
Cloak of Shadows (-1)
Human guise (-0)
(unaging/Wizard constitution)
Incite Emotion by touch/bite (-1) [Yang inspire lust while Yin inspire fear]
Supernatural sense (-1) Jade Court vampires can sense Life using Lore

Feeding Dependency Blood (+1) covering the following abilities

Inhuman Speed(Yang) or Strength(Yin) (-2)
Supernatural Toughness (Yang) or Recovery (Yin) (-4)
Catch is (sunlight for both along with Bamboo(Yin) or Lead (Yang) (+3) as well as True Love (and True Peace is Wrath has been added) for Yang vampires or True Courage (and True Hope is despair has been added) for Yin Vampires.

In addition to the above powers Yang vampires may add or increase the following:

Add Inhuman Recovery (-2)
Increase Speed to Supernatural (-2)
Add Inhuman Strength (-2)
Add Emotional Vampire(Lust) (-1)
Increase range and potency of Incite Emotion and add the emotion of wrath (but not fear or despair)

Yin alter the above list with

Add Inhuman Toughness (-2)
Increase Strength to Supernatural (-2)
Add Inhuman Speed (-2)
Add Emotional vampire (fear)(-1)
Increase range and potency of Incite Emotion and add the emotion of despair (but not lust or wrath)
« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 12:53:10 PM by johntfs »

Offline nick012000

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #24 on: December 29, 2012, 02:19:44 PM »
So, if they diverge based on Yin and Yang energies, does that mean that most of the former are female, and the latter male?
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Offline johntfs

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #25 on: December 29, 2012, 03:08:57 PM »
To a degree.  There tend to be more female Yang vampires than female Yin vampires.  However, the Jade Court is highly patriarchal and males are a clear majority of both Yin and Yang, especially in roles of authority.  Paradoxically, the very sexist nature of the Court means that in general female Jade Court members tend to be more ruthless, competent and dangerous than their male counterparts.

Furthermore, the vast majority of the Jade Court are Asiatic in appearance, and usually Chinese at that.  This will probably change as the Court enters new territories, but such change will probably come only very slowly.

Of course, this is all just my view of the Jade Court.  Presumably when/if Jim properly introduces the Jade Court into the Dresdenverse, his take on them will doubtless be quite different from mine.

Offline nick012000

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #26 on: December 29, 2012, 03:15:11 PM »
To a degree.  There tend to be more female Yang vampires than female Yin vampires.  However, the Jade Court is highly patriarchal and males are a clear majority of both Yin and Yang, especially in roles of authority.  Paradoxically, the very sexist nature of the Court means that in general female Jade Court members tend to be more ruthless, competent and dangerous than their male counterparts.
???

I'm not sure if you know, but Yin = Female Energy (among other things), and Yang = Male Energy (among other things). To quote Wikipedia,
Quote
Yin is characterized as slow, soft, yielding, diffuse, cold, wet, and passive; and is associated with water, earth, the moon, femininity and nighttime.

Yang, by contrast, is fast, hard, solid, focused, hot, dry, and aggressive; and is associated with fire, sky, the sun, masculinity and daytime.
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Offline johntfs

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #27 on: December 29, 2012, 04:00:27 PM »
Hmm.  Well, in that case switch Recovery and Toughness between the Courts.  Yang will have Supernatural Toughness while Yin will have Supernatural Recovery.

Still, I figure the male/female ratio will remain as I said.  Yang vampires, tending to be more driven and passionate are more likely to recruit a female based on desire or beauty.  Yin vampires tend to be far more cool and rational.  That said, the Jade Court is old, having been around since the beginning of Chinese civilization at least.  As Harry has noted, old things tend to get set in their ways.  It's also highly patriarchal and at least a little racist, tending to disdain the capabilities of females and non-Chinese.

Which means that if your characters do run into, say, a black female Jade Court Yin vampire, it's best to be extremely polite or fast on your feet, because she's probably one of the more lethal opponents you could fear to encounter.

Offline Hick Jr

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #28 on: December 29, 2012, 10:33:51 PM »
Hrm. I like this version of the Jade Court, but the writeup is a little hard to read. It's a variation, actually. Most versions of the Jade Court i've seen are based on Jiang-Shi.
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Offline johntfs

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Re: Custom Templates
« Reply #29 on: December 29, 2012, 11:16:11 PM »
In what way is it hard to read?  I'm not being sarcastic, I genuinely want to know to make the information more easily accessible.

As for the Jiang-Shi, the whole "hopping vampire" thing struck me as being at least mildly ridiculous.  Besides, the Jade Court is a court, an organization or society.  That implies a certain level of socialization and intelligence that a "hopped up" zombie seemed unlikely to achieve.  I drew inspiration for my Jade Court from dim memories of the Old White Wolf supplement, Kindred of the East.