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Old 07-13-2013, 11:03 PM   #34
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: L.I., NY
Default Re: Updating/recreating GURPS Mage the Ascension to 4ed

Originally Posted by Inquisitive Raven View Post
The problem here is that the Avatar Advantage includes Store Raw Magic, but it isn't just that. It has features in Storyteller that don't translate well to GURPS like being a semi-autonomous part of of a character's soul that functions as a sort of spirit guide, e.g. by setting challenges for Seekings. It's that "functions as a spirit guide" part that's presumably what drives up the point cost of Avatar, but how do you represent it in game? I suppose that you could call the Essence a zero point feature of the Avatar and use it as guideline to choosing mental and maybe social Advantages and Disadvantages, but what else?
Originally Posted by Flyndaran View Post
At best an Avatar is a mysterious non-physical patron, while weaker versions are occasional allies.
Game mechanically, Avatar in G:MtA is a store for quintessence and a cap on the amount of quintessence a character could spend in in turn. It's role as a spirit guide and in initiating Seekings could be used more as a plot device than an advantage that the PC could call on or expect regular help from.

As far as Essence goes, I definitely see it as a 0 point feature. If a player wants to pick some other traits, like Code of Honor, Obsession, or maybe a Higher Purpose that express their PC's essence, that would be fine, but I don't think it should be required.

Originally Posted by Inquisitive Raven View Post
Re: Wildcard Skills

Why do you have Occult! listed under Verbena rather than, say, Order of Hermes? It seems more intuitive to me to have some analog of the Shaman skill for them; you could call it Witchcraft! possibly replacing some of the wilderness skills with agricultural skills like Gardening. Also, I think you need an urban version of the Shaman! skill for Dreamspeakers that includes things like Scrounge and Streetwise in place of some of the nature related skills.

Let's see, Medicine! should actually be an available option for Euthanatos, a surprisingly large number of them are healing specialists. The watchword here is "triage." They started out doing medical triage, but about two thousand years ago, they got into what might be called spiritual triage and that's where their rep comes from. There's also a branch called the Lakshmists who are focused almost entirely on chance, many of them hang out at casinos and jigger the results so that people they think are deserving win at the expense of rich jerks. I'm not sure what kind of wildcard skill you could give them.

While all members of the Akashic Brotherhood are trained in martial arts, it's not the primary focus for all them. Some of them are more spiritual leaders or philosophers. You might want to make Cleric! or Scholar! available to those.
The list of wildcard skills was really just off the cuff examples, I didn't mean it to be an exhaustive list of what was available to each tradition, or even that a PC would be required to take any wildcard skill at all. The idea was more to give some ideas of wildcard skills that fit the stereotypes and represent possible unconventional but non-magical training, experience and knowledge that being a member of one of the mystic traditions could provide. I do like some of your suggestions for possible wildcard skills for some of the traditions.
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