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Old 08-20-2009, 06:16 AM   #1
JCD
 
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Default Essence Effects

One place where I think In Nomine kind of falls down is the effects of Essence Exhaustion. Except for some flavor text mentioning, run down unlucky people, nothing is said about the effects of losing all one's Essence.

Does leaving it undefined give one more scope? I myself used it to make a dramatic movement where an Impudite stole the Essence from a cancer survivor which caused her to have a relapse. Is that a better way to address the issue?
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Old 08-20-2009, 09:36 AM   #2
William
 
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Default Re: Essence Effects

There are no direct mechanical effects except the loss of your "luck" resource. It's mostly the hollow, drained feeling you mention.

For your cancer survivor, losing all her Essence wouldn't directly cause her to have a relapse, but if she'd been making regular rolls to avoid relapse then it's quite likely that she was blowing what Essence she had unconsciously on increasing the likelihood of success.
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Old 08-20-2009, 01:59 PM   #3
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Default Re: Essence Effects

I liken the loss of Essence to being behind on sleep. As the players use more and more essence, I start to add more and more into my descriptions like "You exit the building, exhausted and spent..." and "looking into the sky, you see that dawn [note: my PCs are angels] is far, far off. So sad." and "Your human Servant, out of Essence, practically stumbles into a trashcan as he follows..."

I think a single instance of being reduced to 0 Essence wouldn't cause something really terrible to happen (like that relapse), but habitually being at 0 Essence (ie, there's a Sorcerer, Impudite, Ethereal, or someone with the Celestial Song of Draining in your life) would lead to a whole bunch of bad things and you just being unluckier overall. These are the people who get bitter and frustrated because "nothing ever goes my way!" And it's true. When they really, really want something...they're lacking the basic human ability to put some extra oomf behind their chances.
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Old 08-20-2009, 03:36 PM   #4
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Default Re: Essence Effects

Quote:
Originally Posted by Acolyte View Post
I liken the loss of Essence to being behind on sleep. As the players use more and more essence, I start to add more and more into my descriptions like "You exit the building, exhausted and spent..." and "looking into the sky, you see that dawn [note: my PCs are angels] is far, far off. So sad." and "Your human Servant, out of Essence, practically stumbles into a trashcan as he follows..."

I think a single instance of being reduced to 0 Essence wouldn't cause something really terrible to happen (like that relapse), but habitually being at 0 Essence (ie, there's a Sorcerer, Impudite, Ethereal, or someone with the Celestial Song of Draining in your life) would lead to a whole bunch of bad things and you just being unluckier overall. These are the people who get bitter and frustrated because "nothing ever goes my way!" And it's true. When they really, really want something...they're lacking the basic human ability to put some extra oomf behind their chances.
Makes sense to me. I would add that, for a celestial character, there's probably a sense of the world closing in. After all, once you're out of Essence (or even down to a single point), you no longer have the ability to assume your "true form" -- you're stuck in the meat suit, even if it is a better model than the average human gets.

Beyond that, yes, I think roleplaying and the inability to reach for a "little bit of luck" is probably sufficient. I like Acolyte's descriptions; in my own case, when my Mercurian of Destiny ran out of Essence after a draining battle against a Shedite, I had him pass out into the arms of the nearest angel, sort of like someone who had been running on adrenaline and then suddenly had the crisis end. Nothing mechanical required the faint, but it fit the scene and the mood perfectly.
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