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Old 09-15-2018, 03:38 AM   #11
RogerBW
 
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

The way I think of it:

Fanaticism is not Overconfidence.
Fanaticism is not Impulsiveness.
Fanaticism is not Incompetence (Tactics).

Sure, you can (and probably should) give it to the mob of crazed cultists, but that's not where it's most interesting.

It's in the same general headspace for me as Sense of Duty: you regard this particular thing as more important than your own wellbeing.
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Old 09-15-2018, 02:04 PM   #12
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

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Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
The way I think of it:

Fanaticism is not Overconfidence.
Fanaticism is not Impulsiveness.
Fanaticism is not Incompetence (Tactics).
Fanaticism can be mistaken for the above because drives people to take actions that they know have low odds of success because they believe they need to be done. Daesh suicide bombers (Extreme Fanatics, -30 points) don't believe that once they blow themselves up, the enemies of Islam will be defeated and all the unbelievers will convert. They're aware that they're barely making dents in their "problems" but they see it as their best option to make those dents, and since those dents looks like progress, they should go blow themselves up. [1]

Fanaticism is another disadvantage, but it can look like other disadvantages.

[1] And because they can't get a job and live in poverty, and they've been told their families will get a pension and be well supported after their death - basically by blowing themselves up they get a job for life AND save on groceries.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:58 PM   #13
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

Arguably, Fanaticism is a special case of Obsession or Sense of Duty.

Depending on the character's behavior, it could also be a special case of Compulsive Behavior.

Characters with more than one of those traits should be carefully scrutinized by the GM to make sure that the disadvantages don't overlap.

It's a wonderful villain disadvantage which can be used to quickly define an NPC and make them resistant to being influenced by PCs.

It's also a way of sugar-coating violent PC behavior. For example, players don't have to make ethical decisions for their characters if all the bad guys are fanatic Nazis, Chtulhu Cultists, or otherwise irredeemable due to their fanaticism.
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Old 09-16-2018, 02:06 PM   #14
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

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For example, players don't have to make ethical decisions for their characters if all the bad guys are fanatic Nazis, Chtulhu Cultists, or otherwise irredeemable due to their fanaticism.
Some still do. However, I have to admit it's very rare I meet a Player that has issues with fantasy violence, despite their own personal ethical codes.
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Old 09-16-2018, 03:09 PM   #15
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

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I once wrote this on a character sheet:

[1] "What really matters.": Perk: Controllable Disadvantage: Extreme Fanaticism (philosophy: prevent the permanent extinction of sapience) (1).
This is a really elegant solution for the guy who is willing to die for a set of beliefs if it really matters, but sees it as a last resort. I know I had a heroic knight type character, and I had really ummed and arred about whether to take Extreme Fanaticism for him. This way he can think clearly about whether this is really a time where giving his life would serve his cause, but when it really matters, he can commit to not budging an inch.

Essentially it would allow him to be reasonable enough to still be heroic, and still show absolute resolve for things he would care about.
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Old 09-17-2018, 05:28 AM   #16
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

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Originally Posted by DataPacRat View Post
I once wrote this on a character sheet:

[1] "What really matters.": Perk: Controllable Disadvantage: Extreme Fanaticism (philosophy: prevent the permanent extinction of sapience) (1).


This was meant to tie in in interesting ways with their Obsession (Immortality), in a setting where there was no certainty about how dangerous any given existential risk would be. The effect was to provide +3 Will vs brainwashing when they were able to justify their actions as being morally just, with a few acceptable mental side-effects as they did.
Given that the defining feature of Extreme Fanaticism is supposed to be a willingness to die on command for that cause, I don't think that it ought to be allowed on a character sheet with Obsession (Immortality). Ever.
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Old 09-17-2018, 08:33 AM   #17
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

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Given that the defining feature of Extreme Fanaticism is supposed to be a willingness to die on command for that cause, I don't think that it ought to be allowed on a character sheet with Obsession (Immortality). Ever.
It wasn't just their /own/ immortality they were seeking, but a general solution for immortality for everyone. I had an easy-to-resist Cowardice to cover when their mind was leaning towards personal survival instead of their anti-large-scale-extinction philosophy. (People being complex and having opposing and shifting drives, and all that.)

Put another way, they /hoped/ that they'd be able to live up to the ideal of "Live forever or die trying", but sometimes ran out of spoons and reverted to the more usual human motivations.
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Old 09-17-2018, 10:51 AM   #18
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

Fanaticism can also be a really easy way to get an adventure rolling.

In my group's multi-GM DF game, I have a cleric with extreme fanaticism. Several adventure hooks have been nothing more than a letter or messenger from the church telling her where to go or what to do. There is no question or hesitation; she just goes. Other disadvantages can work this way too: Vow and Sense of Duty come to mind.
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Old 09-17-2018, 03:58 PM   #19
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Default Re: [Basic] Disadvantage of the Week: Fanaticism

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Fanaticism can also be a really easy way to get an adventure rolling.

In my group's multi-GM DF game, I have a cleric with extreme fanaticism. Several adventure hooks have been nothing more than a letter or messenger from the church telling her where to go or what to do. There is no question or hesitation; she just goes. Other disadvantages can work this way too: Vow and Sense of Duty come to mind.
Ah, the Isaiah character!

"Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me."
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