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Old 07-11-2014, 02:29 PM   #1
Astromancer
 
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Default Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

Basically, I think we need a book on the Cabal for the Fourth Edition. After all, the Cabal is now proudly interdimensional.

What is the Cabal view of the Homeline/Centruum struggle?

How does the Cabal see Reich-5? Threat to be fought? Member to be wooed? Somebody elses problem? Dupe of Midwinter Aton?

Can they access world's at higher and lower Quanta than Homeline or Centruum?

Are there other struggles and wars the Cabal either avoids or manipulates?

What is the Cabal's intertemporial topography? Their map of the worlds.

And I think we need some good templates and character lens too.

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Old 07-11-2014, 02:35 PM   #2
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astromancer View Post
Basically, I think we need a book on the Cabal for the Fourth Edition. After all, the Cabal is now proudly interdimensional.

What is the Cabal view of the Homeline/Centruum struggle?

How does the Cabal see Reich-5? Threat to be fought? Member to be wooed? Somebody elses problem? Dupe of Midwinter Aton?

Can they access world's at higher and lower Quanta than Homeline or Centruum?

Are there other struggles and wars the Cabal either avoids or manipulates?

What is the Cabal's intertemporial topography? Their map of the worlds.

And I think we need some good templates and character lens too.

Reactions.
A lot of your questions are answered in Infinite Earths. As for the rest, like templates and magic and monsters, the magic is in Thaumatology, the templates and monsters are easily adapted from those in Horror (also written by Hite), and all the information you need is in GURPS Cabal.

I've been working on some conversions myself, but it's more of an expansion of Cabal, building it into the sort of in-depth campaign material I like. I'll happily share when I'm done, but I've been poking at it for over a year already, so don't expect anything soon.
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Old 07-11-2014, 03:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

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Basically, I think we need a book on the Cabal for the Fourth Edition. After all, the Cabal is now proudly interdimensional.
The mistake is in thinking of the Cabal as an organisation. It isn't; it's a mutual agreement not to kill each other made between a large number of powerful people, many of them somewhat mad.

I can answer these questions for a vague consensus of the Cabal factions in my Infinite Cabal campaign:
Quote:
What is the Cabal view of the Homeline/Centruum struggle?
Two large and clumsy empires, unable to get at each other well enough to decide their struggle. Pick up profits from them, but don't take sides.
Quote:
How does the Cabal see Reich-5? Threat to be fought? Member to be wooed?
Delusional lunatics, working on profoundly wrong theories of magic and psi, keen to kill anyone who disagrees with them. Try to get Infinity to kill them off, since they are nearer.
Quote:
Can they access world's at higher and lower Quanta than Homeline or Centruum?
Yes, their means of travel between worlds aren't quantum-limited. The Cabal weren't even aware of quanta until they learned of them from Infinity and Centrum.
Quote:
Are there other struggles and wars the Cabal either avoids or manipulates?
Yes, though most of them are confined to individual worlds or skerries.
Quote:
What is the Cabal's inter-temporal topography? Their map of the worlds.
They don't share that stuff among themselves. There are vast amounts of knowledge being sat on by individual Cabalists, and if someone could put it all together, they'd learn incredible things. This would require finding all the Cabalists and bribing or killing most of them.
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And I think we need some good templates and character lens too.
I build Cabalists on about 100 points per rank; after that they vary a lot.
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Old 07-12-2014, 01:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

One thing the Cabal needs is a few worked examples of their missons and goals in the IW background.

I had a CABAL-centric campaign set on Lucifer-5's Mars. They were searching for secrets in the ancient tombs of the creatures that lived on the sea-bottoms of Mars long ages before they dried up.

IW campaigns aren't supposed to go to worlds with interstellar travel (Calliphate is a minor exception) or to worlds with time travel. The Cabal never needed bother with that rule. Cabal antiquaries can show up on Vulcan, Gallifrey, or a Culture Orbital. Heck, Science Fiction has been around long enough to shape some sections of the Astral realms.

The Cabal needs more fleshing out to fully function in the IW setting.
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Old 07-12-2014, 01:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

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One thing the Cabal needs is a few worked examples of their missons and goals in the IW background.
I can give you the one that my campaign is working on. Finding out why there are there so many worlds, how they come to be different (especially in magic levels) and who to change this. Nothing too major.

The Cabal faction working on this is the Royal Society from a world where Isaac Newton's occult researches were rather successful. Last session Newton told the PCs to go recruit him an Albert Einstein - one who has published General Relativity, but is still young enough to be creative. They have some relations with Infinity, and have provided data that has wrecked van Zandt's theory of the Infinite Worlds. But Infinity won't collaborate with them, because the busted theory still imperils The Secret if revealed, and the Royal Society believes in publishing its results. So Newton has decided that it's time to discover the proper theory.
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Old 07-12-2014, 02:28 PM   #6
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

I'd like to see a Cabal 4e (preferably with at least a section that expands on the Pyramid article on using the Cabal in Monster Hunters), but the thread title is a bit much, IMO.
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Old 07-12-2014, 02:45 PM   #7
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

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Two large and clumsy empires, unable to get at each other well enough to decide their struggle. Pick up profits from them, but don't take sides.
Absolutely. I offer this analysis from A Fistful of Dollars.

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Baxter's over there, Rojo's there, me right smack in the middle.
Make both of them come to the Cabal for friendship, accept gifts from both but remain neutral. Keep them hoping.
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Old 07-12-2014, 03:10 PM   #8
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My assumption about the Cabal is that their main interdimensional priority is fending off the qlippothic entities while their main local priority is keeping the non-cabal occupants of their worlds in as much ignorance as possible. In theory this gives them a fair bit in common with Homeline, given that Homeline is also interested in fending off the qlippothic entities while keeping people in ignorance...but of course the Cabal dedication to ignorance also extends to Homeliners, who are after all, still mundanes.
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:46 PM   #9
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

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Originally Posted by Randyman View Post
I'd like to see a Cabal 4e (preferably with at least a section that expands on the Pyramid article on using the Cabal in Monster Hunters), but the thread title is a bit much, IMO.
I personally don't feel Monster Hunters and Cabal are a good match.

Monster Hunters has a particular flow and a goal to its design, and it goes something like this: First, a spooky thing happens (say, a series of cheerleaders show up dead at a local highschool in some spooky, occult fashion). The monster hunters then investigate it (It turns out that the cheerleaders were part of a coven of witches that summoned a demon and the head of the coven has become possessed and is killing people), then they stalk it back to its lair, deal with the monster (exorcism) and then kill it (preferably in a badass showdown).

The Ordinary World -> Spooky thing disrupts the ordinary world -> Investigate Spooky Thing -> Find the Dark Lair -> Enter the Dark Lair -> Slay the Dark Beast -> Return to the Ordinary World, see that you no longer (or never will again) truly fit in it. Rinse, repeat. It's the motiff of everything from Dresden Files to Supernatural to Buffy. The monster is slain, directly, by the heroes, and order is restored

Cabal starts the same way: We have the spooky thing and we investigate it, but the motivation for the investigation is completely different. First, if people figure out that magic is real, they might start to investigate you. So, we investigate, but we also cover up. We engage in conspiracy, we redirect, we convince people that it's a serial killer while tugging on strings to get the official story changed AND to get more information ("Oh, so this head cheerleader came was adopted? Interesting. It turns out her birth parents, or "parents" were on the run from a cult. Perhaps there is something innate about her that draws demons to her. Perhaps we can USE her"). Someone else has commented that the Cabal isn't really an organization, but it is a group of people with connections. You will want to get help from one another, and other forces may be conspiring to take advantage of this situation, so in addition to miring yourself in the politics of the ordinary world via your conspiracy, you mire yourself in the politics of the cabal as you try to take advantage of the situation to advance your own agenda and that of your master, to move higher in the ranks of the cabal. Do you want to make a deal wit this demon? Do you want to control this girl? Or do you want to eliminate both to prevent some insidious master you dislike from gaining control of them?

And if it comes to violence, when it comes to violence, the nature of that violence is different. You need to think ahead, gathering names, working out the modifiers you need, even casting the spells you want on the day you want. The nature of Cabal magic is such that it rewards forethought. My experience with Cabal (and it varies based on the assumption you use) is that a prepared cabalist cake-walks through the competition, and an unprepared cabalist isn't playing out an action scenario so much as a horror scenario where he is the prey before a supernaturally-powerful predator. The first case isn't an action scene, it's a villainous monologue followed by the snuffing out of your target (and you're more worried about reprisals, politics, than you are about the actual fight), and the second isn't action either, it's hiding in in a closet, frantically pouring table salt around you and drawing occult symbols into it while the hellhound snuffles outside the door.

Ordinary world -> Spooky thing -> Investigate the spooky thing -> Corrupt the ordinary world so it can live in its delusions -> Conspire to take advantage of the spooky thing -> Squabble with other cabalists -> Lose control of the whole situation -> Run around in panic ->Resolve the crisis by inducting it into the cabal or destroying it -> Find some way to turn the situation into an advance in power or understanding.

The result is a fundamentally different focus. Monster Hunters is a physical game, a game about detectives and knights. Cabal is a game about wizards and conspirators. It's a game about thought, social interaction, intrigue, deception and subtle magic. If it comes to blows, to actual physical blows, you've screwed something up (a good GM will bring it to that, but the PC isn't generally trying to make that happen, as opposed to Monster Hunters, where the hunter seeks to physically confront the monster).
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Old 07-13-2014, 01:47 PM   #10
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Default Re: Cabal 4e -> WE NEED IT!!!

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Two large and clumsy empires, unable to get at each other well enough to decide their struggle. Pick up profits from them, but don't take sides.
That's one take. Let's try this idea, look at four options.

A) Centruum is a rigid totalitarian state. If they rule unopposed, then keeping the Cabal's secrets will be nearly impossible if you actually interact with society.

B) Homeline is complex, mutinational, and many of the more important nations are democracies. Just think how much effort it would take to manipulate them! Centruum is rigid and lacking in imagination, easy to control or trick. We favor the easier mark.

C) The real profit is in moving things to a cold war/peace by subtle manipulation. That will lead to hypocracy and spies galore. We'll be able to do as we please and sneak freely around the margins.

D) If we manipulate Centruum's plan to move Homeline into Quatuum 3 just right, the same action will move Centruum into Quantuum 10! This will give us a total free hand in Quantuums 6 and 7!



Quote:
Delusional lunatics, working on profoundly wrong theories of magic and psi, keen to kill anyone who disagrees with them. Try to get Infinity to kill them off, since they are nearer.
In the Cabal book, Midwinter Aton is somehow linked to the creation and rise of the Nazis. The Cabal might see Reich-5 as the product of a dangerous renagade mystic order and a serious threat to themselves.

Quote:
Yes, their means of travel between worlds aren't quantum-limited. The Cabal weren't even aware of quanta until they learned of them from Infinity and Centrum.
Or they know of several systems of Quanta of different kinds. The Cabal might be smaller than either Homeline, Centruum, or Reich-5, and have a far larger reach. Or maybe the Cabal is far vaster than all of them together. Who says that the Pearl Bright Ocean doesn't touch every world where spirits can dream?

Quote:
Yes, though most of them are confined to individual worlds or skerries.
And many of these struggles would make fine games.
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