Sunday, April 14, 2013

SA 2.0 Dev Blog #14: New Good Things for Good People


In order to bring in some diversity to trees we wanted to add in some powers to make each tribe, discipline, and arcanoi more unique. This allowed us to try to bring in some of the great canon powers that are somewhat missing. It also allowed us to remove some of the powers which had been subbed in because it was slightly similar to another power that was remaining in the game. We also took the opportunity to remove some powers that had some serious rules issues in a LARP setting.
  Below are a couple of rules that have been added to facilitate some of these changes:

Conditions are long term effects such as poisons or illnesses that will remain until treated or the end of the event, a player may decided to have the condition continue from event to event if they like. If you are affected by a condition you will need to follow the rules element as well as roleplay in the suggested manner. You are free to describe your symptoms in an in-game way.

Mass meta call
Mass attacks affect everyone within mental range of the caster.

New Powers 

Cost: 1 Energy
Call: “Entrancement”
The target is oathed to the caster for the duration of the power. This power will end if the caster makes any attacks against the target. The target of this power may spend willpower to break from the mental effect even though they are under the effects of an oath.

Cost: None
Call: None
This power increases the caster’s Regeneration rate by 1. If he does not have regeneration from his faction he will gain Regeneration 1.

Cost: 1 energy
Call: “Hallucination <description>”
The target has a hallucination that fits with the description in some way. The <description> is limited to three words.

Cost: Energy equal to the <number> of the damage attack call.
Call: “Juggernaught <damage call>”
The caster may add the Juggernaut meta onto a single damage call.  Juggernaut attacks are considered successful attacks and cause damage even if blocked.

Cost: None
Call: None
The caster may put on any type of mask they desire. Additionally, a character with this power is no longer required to wear makeup requirements of their sub-faction. Also, a character with this power may identify himself under a different name without a full face covering (see disguising rules, p.XXX).

Cost: None
Call: None
You get 3 additional pence at check in.

READ MAGIC (Passive)
Cost: None
Call: None
A character with this power may read the rules portion of any ritual scroll or tag and take the information in game.

Cost: 2 energy
Call: “Resist”
This power allows the caster to resist a single attack with the “Breach” meta call.

Cost: 2 Energy
Call: “Resist Taint”
The caster may use this power any time they would become tainted or poisoned to not be tainted or resist the poison effect.

Cost: 2 energy
Call: “Mass Sanctuary”
All tainted targets must attempt to remain 10 feet from the caster and may not make attacks against the caster. This power has no effect on targets that are not tainted.

Cost: None
Call: None
Silver is no longer considered a source of aggravated damage for this character.

TRUE FORM (Mental)
Cost: 1 Energy
Call: “True Form”
The target must remove any mask they are currently wearing and cease using the Cloak power.  For the duration of this power the target may not wear any mask or use the Cloak power.

Cost: None
Call: None
You receive an additional prophecy at check in.

Cost: 1 Energy
Call: “Woadling”
The caster must paint a Gaian symbol on the target. The target may resist the next status attack that hits them. Future uses of this power require a new symbol to be drawn.

Cost: 1 Energy
Call: “Wounding Lies”
Each time the target makes an untruthful statement per character knowledge, he suffers one aggravated damage that cannot be resisted and cries out in pain.



  1. Some clarification is needed on "PENCE FROM HEAVEN You get 3 additional pence at check in."

    The first game only? Every time I check this character in? Events when I actually play this character? Every time I approach the Check In desk and ask for more money?

  2. Checking in will be clarified with checking in a primary character and backup characters. The Primary character is one that you will be playing first at the event. This character may use crafting skills and get rewards such as Pence From Heaven or Black Ichor. Other characters may not craft and do not receive this bonus.
    But beyond that, it's 3 pence per game.

  3. Very cool ideas for powers! I love the fact you're going to have defined rules for disguises. I also think Pence from Heaven is what the SA economy has been missing to make it sustainable. Personally, I would call it something more like "Day Job" to more accurately describe what a person works for the other 57 days in between games. I think it would be even cooler if it were a ranked skill that anyone can take.

    At first I thought Silver Armor is going to be too powerful, but it got me to think about the rarity of silver weapons and how they are going to be used under the new model. It really doesn't make sense for it to cost energy to swing a silver weapon since a common human can do it and they don't have an energy pool. So the power of this gift really depends on a few questions:

    1. Are we still assuming max health is reduced when aggravated damage is dealt?
    2. Will silver weapons require energy to attack with?
    3. How common will silver weapons be?

    1. Jay,

      The power pence from heaven is a gift from canon (pennies from heaven). There will be other ways to get a similar effect, but I haven't posted the list of new merits yet.

      I love these three questions specifically because they're exactly what we thought about when putting this power in.

      1) Max health is reduced when aggravated damage is dealt.
      2 and 3) Some will, some won't. We've added the ability for blacksmiths to make silver daggers (only daggers) for a significant cost (minimum 10 shillings). I expect these to be a major RP topic when they're found floating around as it does no good to do anything but kill shifters. To counteract this silver armor has been introduced. However, if you want a silver sword or you want to use silver claws you will be required to spend energy.
      I'd expect silver daggers to become more common because of this. Silver weapons may become somewhat less common because of the dagger option. This counteracts some of the massive advantages gained by shifters (umbra, +1 damage, gifts) by making their bane more common that fire. Generally speaking shifters have serious advantages when it comes to combat, especially with both Avoidance and Resilience moving into Breed trees.

  4. Based on that frequency of silver weapons, I think that every older shifter will need to learn silver armor for survivability. If a shifter gets knocked out in a fight, someone can then pull out a silver dagger and hit the shifter 10 times on the ground to immediately kill the shifter. This makes a shifter substantially weaker and easier to kill than a normal human, unless all damage is considered aggravated to humans. If that's the case though, Fast Healing does nothing for a human not to mention that armor would be pretty futile for them.

    From my understanding, silver is only supposed to damage a shifter as it would a normal human - being something they can't recover from easily. In this new format with max HP being reduced by aggravated damage, I'm concerned that a human with fast healing will be far more durable than any supernatural.

    1. I would agree that every older shifter will want to learn Silver Armor for survivability. However they will also want to learn Gauntlet Walk, Cloak Sight, Resist Taint, Obedience, Disable, and Form of Vapor (or other powerful level 3 shifter powers). If you get dropped and someone wants to kill you, the only thing stopping them is the energy cost. For shifters, you don't get that insurance.

      Silver causes aggravated damage to shifters, regular swords cause lethal damage to shifters and humans. It is worse to a shifter than the same attack would be to a human.

      We're shifting the majority of the game to survival powers helping you before you go unconscious, not after. A silver dagger isn't going to be a ton of use in a straight up fight against the angry moon beast that hits harder than you. But if you take them down, it's bad times for the shifter.

      I would agree that if you come to a fight prepared to kill a shifter, once you get them down, they could be cheaper to take out than a human that picks up Fast Healing. But if you come prepared to kill someone, once they're down, you win.

  5. Your comment of "For shifters, you don't get that [energy cost] insurance," would have been very good to know back when you were first bringing up the change to aggravated damage. The way it was originally presented was that all people would be somewhat hard to instantly kill by requiring significant energy. The fact that shifters are omitted from that makes a huge difference to a third of the players in SA.

    Based on these proposed game mechanics, I get the feeling that humans will be the new tanks in this game since they have the fewest sources of aggravated damage. If they have might, they swing for just as much damage as an Ahroun shifter with potence, but they aren't going to be worn down from silver, holy water, sunlight, etc. From the very concept, I would expect a werewolf or moon beast to be stronger and tougher than a normal human.

    From your post, it sounds like you're considering all shifters to fight in war form. You need to keep in mind they can't shift very often due to witnesses and a mask takes too much time to put on to usually do it effectively in an unplanned combat. A mask is also a significant impairment that increased damage doesn't necessarily compensate for in terms of the loss of perception and accuracy.

    I think slowing down the combat is also going to make daggers much more effective in combat. The only advantage of having a sword over a dagger is the range over which you can hit an opponent before he closes distance. Since closing the extra 18" distance can be done in about half a second and you can only strike once per second, I think the person fighting with a dagger will likely keep up in damage output to that of someone with a sword in most cases being just half a second behind in total damage (the exception being against a shield).

    I'm sorry if this commentary comes off as overly critical this late in the process. I'm just becoming more concerned with this aggravated damage model as I hear more of the fleshed out details. I totally see why you added the Silver Armor power now as I think it's going to be more than necessary based on the environment. Perhaps you could consider adjusting base HP for each race/faction to set the precedence of comparative durability to lessen the effects this aggravated damage model will have.