Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

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Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Thu Jun 15, 2017 6:19 am

I am thinking some rules discussion threads could be a good thing since Strife suggested one. For many things in Mage there are several rules that contradict one another and we have to choose one set to go with, hell there are four completely different ideas of what happens to a mage that become a ghoul and here we do not have much leeway since it have been fairly established in game that it is the Blood Treachery rules that apply, the one where your Avatar get poisoned not the two newer rules sets from the new Black Hand book a few months back and now from Book of Secrets.

With Gilgul though we have some leeway, we have been using the rules from the old Storytellers Companion not Guide to the Traditions I remembered wrong but the old rules that world like this:

Any mage with 5 dots in Spirit can destroy an Avatar and if an Avatar is shattered that is it, it is gone for good though theory have it that Supreme Archmages of Spirit can restore one. I do not have the system in my head but it is fairly simple an always vulgar with witness rote where you need to score more successes than the victim's Avatar rating and it is an opposed roll, your Arete vs their Avatar plus Stamina an countermagick if they are free to use magick. The system is from Storytellers Companion for Revised but the basic idea are from Order of Hermes Tradition book that is right and it is also mention in first and second edition's core book.

The new system have Avatars be much more durable, yes Spirit 5 can shatter an Avatar and that is unpleasant as hell but it is only temporary the Avatar will reform in seven days and go looking for it's host and if the host is dead then it will cause a bit of a fuss or reincarnate. To destroy it you need to use Spirit 5 to shatter it, Mind 5 to destroy it's personality, and Prime and Entropy to burn it out of reality and scatter it to the winds so it can not reform.

Ok we have a few options now, we have established in the game that the old version do work and permanently shatters an Avatar which sends it's shards into the Umbra as per Revised rules...and yet we have Mia who have been reforming herself. We could work with the idea that the older versions of Gilgul might not be permanent unless their minds are shattered as well but that very few actually know this and that an Gilgulled Avatar could reform itself given enough time, after all magi know very little about Avatars really.

The first version of the Gilgul rite as mentioned in passing in some of the books where more similar to what are done in Wheel of Time with severing, you take the victim's Avatar, cut it out of the host and give it a kick in it's spiritual tush to send it onward to it's next incarnation, that is how the rote got it's name which translate as rebirth or more reformation. Some Hermetics still advocate for this lesser Gilgul for anyone but the Fallen. It could be the more brutal version from Book of Secrets are another step on that ladder, one version will just send the Avatar to the Well of Souls, one will shatter it but the shard will retain parts of the whole so they could in theory reform and the new version make the whole thing bloody permanent regardless. That is one way to incorporate the new rules. Or the more severe ritual can be a old archaic way to do it known only to a few Quesitors and done only to the ones the Order itself deep dangerous enough, in secret in some dank cellar.

I do think we should use the new rules for Branding where Branding can be given for a defined length of time, a number of years or permanently. I would also then think that a seven year Brand for example is less painful for the victim than the permanent one that Beatrice got, simply due to doing less damage it is the same as with flesh and body modification, a temporary brand hurt less than the third degree burn needed for a permanent one.

I have not had time to look at the Shattered Avatar merit, is it the same as in Revised or is it a new one?
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:31 pm

Thanks Anja for putting up the thread. Sorry this is a long response, lol. Some of it is pulled from discussions, but it's good we can all talk about it now.

From some previous discussions:

Spirit Sphere: We've been using 2e rules for Spirit sphere and associated material is derived from that.
--This includes the Gilgul rite being a S5 (only) rote (from the storyteller's companion) as well as 2e Gauntlet ratings.
--for working with Ghosts, both Entropy, Prime and Spirit are allowed spheres to work with ghosts, depending on Paradigm (M20 says that you need Entropy and Prime to attack a Ghost which then often becomes a Spectre, whereas previous editions used Spirit, see p417-418).
-In M20, Spirit Sphere/DimSci, can use counterspell to soak Rage attacks (vs using their Charms) from Spirits even though they are Deadly damage. And even if they don't have any Spirit ranking, they can use their Avatar rating to soak - are we going to use this? see p417-418

*Gilgul rote* - There are a few versions of this rote apparently though I can't track them all down, there is supposed to be one in the NWO section somewhere but it's not in the Convention book I have and I didn't see it in my copy of the Storytellers, so it must 2edition. The types seem to be split into two camps, the original full destruction of the avatar being the one end of the spectrum and then the original cutting of the ties from an incarnate to its spirit so it can reincarnate (this really seems as if it would piss the Euthanatos off, btw unless it was their rote). Though it makes canon confusing, it's likely there are more versions of the rote around depending who carries it out and when, after all, when it was created it was not like they understood what they were really doing anyway (which is the same flavor text found in the OoH book, 2nd that we've been using).
- in the OoH tradbook 2nd, p47-48 t is a full ritual that takes 6 mages, although it is the Master of spirit that actually must know the rote and carries it out while the other 5 provide assistance in case anything goes wrong and to carry the psychological burden of the act and to hurry it along. Most that go through this rite only wish death after. In this book, it says there have only been 15 gilguls at Horizon.  This is similar to what the 'standard' casting of it would look like at Horizon, probably and not dissimilar to what we've been doing (a Master does the spell, others help and things can go wrong).
-In the NWO book, as most Convention folks are not allowed more knowledge past Spirit 2 (exception being Void Engineers and other high ranking comrades), so I would assume this is only done by Ivory Tower operatives under closed conditions.
-System mechanics we use for the S5 rote: Always vulgar with witness. Opposed roll, those that cast it must score more successes than the victim's Avatar rating. Roll caster Arete vs victim's Avatar plus Stamina and countermagick if they are free to use magick.

*comments*
So the new rote employs multiple spheres (Entropy, Mind, Prime, and Spirit) and it makes enough sense given what they're actually doing. But since we've already been using the S5 version I wonder the following (given our game, though Icly the characters might not know it, or it might be unknowable):

Mind -
We could work with the idea that the older versions of Gilgul might not be permanent unless their minds are shattered as well but that very few actually know this and that an Gilgulled Avatar could reform itself given enough time, after all magi know very little about Avatars really.

Yeah, the mind of the avatar could be passed on to another shard, or, if there are broken shards, they can hang onto memories (this already seems to be the case for our game). The same with spirit and fate, really. All of these things could linger in existence and transfer information or energy.

Prime - the destruction power of prime would totally unmake a thing as much as it can make one. However, the Upper and Lower limits of the Prime sphere done by a magus could dictate if it's even possible to shred an avatar totally from existence. If it is possible to do so, is it also possible to put one back together (with similar or greater power, like an Archmage or greater being). This might just be one of those 'maybe who knows' kinds of things or since they are Mages, it can be done but it would be on the higher end of power.

Entropy - severing of the ties of fate. Similar to Spirit, the fate ties can be passed on unless the fate of the person is for their spirit to be so shattered, in other words did say parts of Heylel's Fate just get transferred to all the mages that have inherited his shards (example using characters from our game). One for the Euthanatos to answer?

The first version of the Gilgul rite as mentioned in passing in some of the books where more similar to what are done in Wheel of Time with severing, you take the victim's Avatar, cut it out of the host and give it a kick in it's spiritual tush to send it onward to it's next incarnation, that is how the rote got it's name which translate as rebirth or more reformation. Some Hermetics still advocate for this lesser Gilgul for anyone but the Fallen. It could be the more brutal version from Book of Secrets are another step on that ladder, one version will just send the Avatar to the Well of Souls, one will shatter it but the shard will retain parts of the whole so they could in theory reform and the new version make the whole thing bloody permanent regardless. That is one way to incorporate the new rules. Or the more severe ritual can be a old archaic way to do it known only to a few Quesitors and done only to the ones the Order itself deep dangerous enough, in secret in some dank cellar.

It makes sense to have more than one version of the spell. Maybe, somewhere along the way, someone found a way that did more than they thought it did or that made what they felt to be ultimate destruction (this could be the version in the new BoS, or the S5 variant that we use now). This version is limited knowledge, and if the Order developed it they'd hoarde it and use it sparingly (moreso than Parma Magica). Others would try to replicate it or come up with another version on their own. However, since they still didn't know what they were really doing when it comes to avatars really, things are not as clear cut busting one with a spell (avatars are mysterious). And so because thousands of years are not really a big deal to a spirit because whatistime, the avatars may slowly coalesce again, depending what was done to them, even while someone in the new regime seems pretty keen (someone with a grudge!?) with on suddenly using  more destructive versions of this rote (S5).

(As a aside - something I have a thought of integrating into Adley's paradigm beliefs about avatars, given what's happened to them all and also there are some things he might have picked up from some of his Tradition sources that could support the possibility of that idea. That shattering disperses, creates shards or worse, grains of spiritual 'sand' that can wind up anywhere until the entire Tellurian is contaminated. How the Nephandi would love that...the idea is terrifying. But also might hold some possibilities for their unintentional redemption).

Other things that destroy avatars:
-vampire vitae, as per Blood Treachery. It also can create a powerful addiction while it slowly erodes the avatar that can last into its next life. Not a fun time.
-the avatar storm - though not present in our game (yet anyway), it's hinted at and it's similarly given that stray shards of other avatars can harm a person's incarnate avatar and walking through a shattered soul in the Umbra can be used as a gilgul-trap.
-paradox and magick accidents

Wards:
-The term Ward can be used generally to include non-Correspondence type defenses, such as perimeter-alarm or tripwire type spells which are Prime-based.

Branding
I do think we should use the new rules for Branding where Branding can be given for a defined length of time, a number of years or permanently. I would also then think that a seven year Brand for example is less painful for the victim than the permanent one that Beatrice got, simply due to doing less damage it is the same as with flesh and body modification, a temporary brand hurt less than the third degree burn needed for a permanent one.

Makes sense to me - making a permanent brand in something virtually immortal would be pretty hard to do and wouldn't be that common, really. Though it's implied that there are more brandings lately...

Shattered Avatar Merit
-New BoS, p. 77 - 5 pt Merit:
Mechanics: allows a person to increase their Arete level by absorbing shards of itself if the person can find piece of itself. With each piece restored, one dot can be added to Avatar to a max rating of 5 (cannot go beyond 5 no matter how many pieces there actually are of it). If the avatar piece is in another mage, the avatar rating gets added if you manage to kill them (reminds me of Highlander).

*comment*
Useful as springboard in game won merit for Mia's hoovering, though she seems indiscriminate of what she eats, so that might be considered a Flaw (the pieces don't even have to be hers which seems good, but then you can end up with undesirable bits)

Spirit Protocols:
In a question I asked Anja, I asked how does it work if a spirit has more than one command, or if two people hold its Name and give contradictory orders. It was decided at the time it would be treated as undoing a talisman or enchantment, rather than as a counterspell, with the number of successes needed depending on how many was scored with the original binding and the diff dependent on how willing or unwilling the Umbrood in question was to be controlled by this new mage.

Qlippothic Magick
While Book of the Fallen may have a totally different view, I've been using the view taken from kabbalah and other actual occult and hermetic systems as part of Adley's paradigm, and his developing views on the Fallen. So, while this is paradigm-related and not necessarily global about the Fallen, it became an interesting discussion on how Fallen Magick works both systematically and mechanically. For now, though Anja has said/indicated that Qlippothic Magick works as a destruction-base, negation kind of magick. It is anathema to Reality as we know it, and therefore those who use this magick face greater risk of Paradox and more severe effects from it than those who do not.

Counterspelling Qlippothick Magick:
Summarizing, basic counterspelling mechanics are that you need to know at least one of the spheres involved with at least one dot in it and each success (diff 7) takes one away from the effect it targets, chewing it away until it fails or is less effective. Interception of an effect targeting someone else requires the mage to know one of the spheres again, has a diff 8 plus requires knowing Prime plus uses one point of Quint to fuel a protective spell (kind of like Shell from Final Fantasy). We agreed that the standard would work but since Colin and Adley have been using Entropy and Prime to work against Fallen spells in a different way, we could develop an alternative. From what we discussed, I got the following (comment if I have interpreted something wrong or there are other ideas):

Reweaving (aka, Filling Magickal Potholes): In the same way that Technocrats lean on the Consensus they have built in their favor to overcome Dynamic Magick, the Consensus is still more friendly to Dynamic magick than Qlippothic works. As Qlippothic magick destroys the possibility there was anything but the rote, it is working against reality - using the concept of negation - to destroy anything but what they want to happen. Reweaving is a different tactic for dealing with the Fallen's rotes. Using Prime/Entropy (and applicable related Spheres and optimizes with Quintessence), Reweaving attempts to reintroduce the fundamental property of possibility back into the reality affected by the Qlippothic work so that other possibilities can again exist. This may default back to Reality as Consensus dictates, as that is the easiest rather than a new Dynamic work taking its place. Though difficult, Reweaving is a powerful tool against the Nephandi, as it reinforces Existence of Reality itself by repairing the damage done to it on a Primal level. Mechanically, as Reality is in favor of existing or at least not degrading at an increased rate from normal Entropy, mechanically using Reweaving technique gives the person a -1 difficulty in dealing with Qlippothic works.

Languages:
-Languages are a merit now, but I just realised Enochian does not make sense then because it is related to magick - it might make sense to separate it out into what Larta Magic/hedge wizards can learn and awakened magick, in which case we might need to look at my character sheet.

Knowledge/Abilities/Talents
-Dodge doesn't exist in M20, we've agreed to use M20 dex+athletics as the dodge ability

Resonance Rules:
Should we adopt some of these rules, such as Signatures? If we do, are we going to keep the old versions, ie, Jhor or use what makes most sense for the character's paradigms/experiences


Last edited by s7trif3 on Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:43 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : forgot something)
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Warpmind on Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:15 pm

Heh, I like the Reweaving idea to counter Qlippothic magic - very much what we did to the air wall in the post office.

The Shattered Avatar Merit... It's a fairly close fit, but sufficiently off that working out the "value" of it would be somewhere I'd rather not tread, what with the added bonus of being able to pick up shards of any Avatar, and the disadvantage of not having any quality control whatsoever. Colin's going to have to have a LONG talk with Mia about that one... and the way she does it, I'm not sure she's going to be limited to Avatar 5, either - though that's a problem for the Council of Nine at a much later time. Wink

As for Languages - is there any compelling reason for moving the language skills to Merits, rather that keep the workable Knowledge designation?
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:01 pm

Yeah, I was basing the Reweaving on that plus some of their other works. I think Colin's special ability to channel dirty tass with his rote might fall into something unique too

Lol, well...Mia is like my pupper, will eat anything that's within reach/on the floor. So, yeah xD

re: Languages. It's a one point per language merit, written and spoken (if both are learn able). The boon is that if you have 5 or more language merits, you are able to understand the basic principles of language itself and can use the following ability to unravel languages you don't know: Intelligence + Enigmas, difficulty 7 or higher.

However, Enochian could be covered as Occult knowledge under the new rules as the type of enochian that non-hermetics would know (or sleepers). Enochian in the Order of Hermes Tradbook works differently than a regular language though. It is limited by character's Arete. So you can only know as many dots in it as your Arete rank, since that is the limit of spiritual awakening. I didn't consider that when I added it as a language under merit. It could still work out though. I do like how with regular knowledges, you get your level-4 specialties, which you don't as a Merit. I also used a Knowledge for Linguistics, which arguably is what the bonus roll is talking about in part, arriving at it in a different method.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:50 pm

Spirit Sphere: We've been using 2e rules for Spirit sphere and associated material is derived from that.
--This includes the Gilgul rite being a S5 (only) rote (from the storyteller's companion) as well as 2e Gauntlet ratings.

That is what makes sense to me since we play in a 2 edition setting so the changes to the Gauntlet that happens in the metaplot would not have happened and while the new Gilgul ritual from Book of Secrets do make allot of sense we have had well three attempted ones and one successful which do sound horrible and excessive but it is in the middle of a Nephandi uprising, and I do not want to recon things though I might bring elements from the new ritual into the game where they will fit with what have been done before in this game.

--for working with Ghosts, both Entropy, Prime and Spirit are allowed spheres to work with ghosts, depending on Paradigm (M20 says that you need Entropy and Prime to attack a Ghost which then often becomes a Spectre, whereas previous editions used Spirit, see p417-418).

Yes that seams like a good way to do it to me.

-In M20, Spirit Sphere/DimSci, can use counterspell to soak Rage attacks (vs using their Charms) from Spirits even though they are Deadly damage. And even if they don't have any Spirit ranking, they can use their Avatar rating to soak - are we going to use this? see p417-418

Yeah I think we should use that.

*Gilgul rote* - There are a few versions of this rote apparently though I can't track them all down, there is supposed to be one in the NWO section somewhere but it's not in the Convention book I have and I didn't see it in my copy of the Storytellers, so it must 2edition.

I have not seen this but I can go looking for it in The Gude to the Technocracy and also the first edition Convention books though I would assume if it is the New World Order it is probably nto Gilgul as we know it but more well soul crushing mind control leaving the mage to broken to ever use magick again but here I am guessing. I would assume the Progenitors have some sort of lobotomy either physical or chemical and we know The Computer eat Avatars. All I can remember is that the Union do have Gilgul but not exactly how is done.

The types seem to be split into two camps, the original full destruction of the avatar being the one end of the spectrum and then the original cutting of the ties from an incarnate to its spirit so it can reincarnate (this really seems as if it would piss the Euthanatos off, btw unless it was their rote). Though it makes canon confusing, it's likely there are more versions of the rote around depending who carries it out and when, after all, when it was created it was not like they understood what they were really doing anyway (which is the same flavor text found in the OoH book, 2nd that we've been using).

Well Bonisagus asked Guernicus to create the Gilgul ritual as a final insult to mages to really crossed the line, it was meant to be a way to scare other magi away from the most foul breaches of the Code and at first it was just a way to sever the Mage from their Avatar at the time they had Faunts and did not think it to be more than the Gift for Magick. I would assume the different versions of the rote could be explained with it being developed further over the years as more knowledge about Avatars have arisen. It is also interesting to Note that in earlier editions the flaw Sphere Inept one of the explanations suggested are a Lesser Gilgul. I have seen two things mentioned as such, the first version fo the rote that only separated mage and Gift and sent the latter on it's way, and the rote where pieces of a mage's Avatar is cut away, described as skinning the Avatar to remove permanent Paradox. Anyway developments of the Rote can explain why there are differences to it in different books.

Also anyone with Spirit 5 can by the book destroy an Avatar I usually play it it being very hard to do unless you know what you are doing. So Jeffry can in theory do it but most likely if he where to try he would just hurt the mage and piss that Avatar of royally, though that is just me wanting it to be harder to kill and Avatar than an Umbrood.

- in the OoH tradbook 2nd, p47-48 t is a full ritual that takes 6 mages, although it is the Master of spirit that actually must know the rote and carries it out while the other 5 provide assistance in case anything goes wrong and to carry the psychological burden of the act and to hurry it along. Most that go through this rite only wish death after. In this book, it says there have only been 15 gilguls at Horizon. This is similar to what the 'standard' casting of it would look like at Horizon, probably and not dissimilar to what we've been doing (a Master does the spell, others help and things can go wrong).

It says the Order of Hermes have done 15 Gilguls which are more than twice what any other two Traditions have done together so it have been somewhere between well lower number is hard to guess at then but twenty or thirty and seventy five if we are talking exactly twice as many as the other Traditions but yes this is the rote we have been using in this game, the one done by six ritualists, a blurb in one of the Core books I think said it was six Masters of Spirit and I have gone with that rather than one Master and six assistants. But everything else but the rank of the assistants I have taken out of Revised Order of Hermes Tradition Book. And yes it can go very very wrong.

One Master of Spirit that knows the Rote can do it but you want it to go as quick as possible both because things can go wrong and because well...if you have a shred of humanity you want it to go as quick as possible so six ritualists are used but you could use more or less it is just the number that is Traditional.

-In the NWO book, as most Convention folks are not allowed more knowledge past Spirit 2 (exception being Void Engineers and other high ranking comrades), so I would assume this is only done by Ivory Tower operatives under closed conditions.

Originally I did not think the Union used Gilgul at all save feeding mages to the Computer, but it have been mentioned in blurbs here and there that they do and then generally with those they think are so innocent they do not deserve death, slavery or other horrible things but they need to be made safe, they are Gilgulled and either set free or given simple work and room and board, and those to dangerous to keep captive but you need information on them. I have not seen any information about how and I can only guess. But yes other than high ranking Void Engineers the only one legally capable would be living in the Ivory Tower unless they have made some drugs that do it or a machine and sent it out to various Constructs.

-System mechanics we use for the S5 rote: Always vulgar with witness. Opposed roll, those that cast it must score more successes than the victim's Avatar rating. Roll caster Arete vs victim's Avatar plus Stamina and countermagick if they are free to use magick.

Yes that are the mechanics and you can see why it is a group ritual with one ritualist with the diff at Vulgar with Witness scoring that many successes against a strong Avatar will take allot of time and you do not want to botch.

*comments*
So the new rote employs multiple spheres (Entropy, Mind, Prime, and Spirit) and it makes enough sense given what they're actually doing. But since we've already been using the S5 version I wonder the following (given our game, though Icly the characters might not know it, or it might be unknowable):

I think that the BoS version of the rite might be a more extreme version and probably the player characters do not know about it but some of the Masters in the game might or it might be a new version that will be developed for those that really need to be smashed to bits...like if the characters manage to capture Abigail and Lisa. But the earlier version is permanent in this game or at least as far as anyone knows it is and it is the one we have used but we might introduce the new more ehm...cringe worthy version to the game eventually as if the original version was not bad enough.

Yeah, the mind of the avatar could be passed on to another shard, or, if there are broken shards, they can hang onto memories (this already seems to be the case for our game). The same with spirit and fate, really. All of these things could linger in existence and transfer information or energy.

The information on Avatar shards can be found in the Asencion book the original close of the line. They are described as having parts of the original soul's mind and memories but they are simpler more childish and each shard often focus on one thing, so one shard is the nobility of the old Avatar and one is it's anger and so on, so without destroying the mind of that Avatar it do survive in some way and it do form splinter collectives when they manage to find a host to invade. This is what I used for Mia, I just assumed that a bit bigger hard had survived and that she is integrating other shard into herself and slowly gaining back her original full consciousness.

We also know that with the Shattered Avatar Merit bigger shards come back together so no unless you use the new ritual an Gilgulled Avatar is down but not completely out even if you do not play with the idea that it will reform itself in seven days, something similar can happen slowly over time in earlier editions as well.

Prime - the destruction power of prime would totally unmake a thing as much as it can make one. However, the Upper and Lower limits of the Prime sphere done by a magus could dictate if it's even possible to shred an avatar totally from existence. If it is possible to do so, is it also possible to put one back together (with similar or greater power, like an Archmage or greater being). This might just be one of those 'maybe who knows' kinds of things or since they are Mages, it can be done but it would be on the higher end of power.

I would say that it can be done, anything can be done but then we are talking about supreme archmagi and none the player characters know have heard about something like this ever being done.

Entropy - severing of the ties of fate. Similar to Spirit, the fate ties can be passed on unless the fate of the person is for their spirit to be so shattered, in other words did say parts of Heylel's Fate just get transferred to all the mages that have inherited his shards (example using characters from our game). One for the Euthanatos to answer?

Yes well at least it prevent the Avatar from somehow remanifesting art of what it is or at least it's fate, but yes that is probably for the Euthanatos to discuss. I think the Entropy element was added for destruction and to make sure that a Gilgulled Avatar is as nuked as it can be. Nuke it from orbit it is the only way to make sure. :O.

It makes sense to have more than one version of the spell. Maybe, somewhere along the way, someone found a way that did more than they thought it did or that made what they felt to be ultimate destruction (this could be the version in the new BoS, or the S5 variant that we use now). This version is limited knowledge, and if the Order developed it they'd hoarde it and use it sparingly (moreso than Parma Magica). Others would try to replicate it or come up with another version on their own.

I agree the BoS version could exist as something secret the Order will pull out only in the rare cases where they have to be absolutely sure, let us say Tremere's Avatar had survived then he would be a candidate and then the S5 version are the one that are normally being used and are known. It is also possible the less severe version that do not kill an Avatar but just send it on it's way might be in use for when you want to punish the mage and make an example of him or her but do not see a need to harm their Avatar itself but you will want to leave them without magick. I can imagine if someone have been completely reckless with Paradox and have gone into a Quiet and murdered their entire Cabal or something you would want to punish that harshly but not damage their Avatar then kicking that to the next life while leaving them powerless might be by some seen as a fair punishment, worse than death and worthy to serve as an example to others while at the same time you make sure they can never do it again.

However, since they still didn't know what they were really doing when it comes to avatars really, things are not as clear cut busting one with a spell (avatars are mysterious). And so because thousands of years are not really a big deal to a spirit because whatistime, the avatars may slowly coalesce again, depending what was done to them, even while someone in the new regime seems pretty keen (someone with a grudge!?) with on suddenly using more destructive versions of this rote (S5).

That fit very well with the game we are running.

(As a aside - something I have a thought of integrating into Adley's paradigm beliefs about avatars, given what's happened to them all and also there are some things he might have picked up from some of his Tradition sources that could support the possibility of that idea. That shattering disperses, creates shards or worse, grains of spiritual 'sand' that can wind up anywhere until the entire Tellurian is contaminated. How the Nephandi would love that...the idea is terrifying. But also might hold some possibilities for their unintentional redemption).

That is a great idea. I can work with that for some story hooks.

Other things that destroy avatars:
-vampire vitae, as per Blood Treachery. It also can create a powerful addiction while it slowly erodes the avatar that can last into its next life. Not a fun time.
-the avatar storm - though not present in our game (yet anyway), it's hinted at and it's similarly given that stray shards of other avatars can harm a person's incarnate avatar and walking through a shattered soul in the Umbra can be used as a gilgul-trap.
-paradox and magick accidents

That is right, and Island Creatures from Horizon and the Computer who eat Avatars, and off course if you have a phylactery destroying it.

Wards:
-The term Ward can be used generally to include non-Correspondence type defenses, such as perimeter-alarm or tripwire type spells which are Prime-based.

Yes any personal or perimiter spell that protect, stop magick, warn of intruders and so on are a ward.

Makes sense to me - making a permanent brand in something virtually immortal would be pretty hard to do and wouldn't be that common, really. Though it's implied that there are more brandings lately...

It is and it have not really fit with the setting yes Mage society can be brutal but permanently branding an Avatar with Lame for stealing a chair seams a bit much or for insulting an older mage with the new rules a bratty Initiate will get a painful, humiliating experience but the Brand might last for a year, it is still a serious thing, harming an Avatar even temporarily is traumatic as fuck for the host of said Avatar but it is not permanent so only very serious crimes and with widderslaintes such as Bee would a Brand be deep enough to be permanent and then off course all the more painful and traumatic for the one getting one. Kyle is in for a fun time if he is not Gilgulled. :O There are more Brandings later though, something rotten is happening on Horizon.

*comment*
Useful as springboard in game won merit for Mia's hoovering, though she seems indiscriminate of what she eats, so that might be considered a Flaw (the pieces don't even have to be hers which seems good, but then you can end up with undesirable bits)

Mia is not a shattered Avatar...well she is but not one as the ones in the Merit she is a shard collective from Asencion so she works a little differently and yes she will eat any Avatar shard she find, nom, nom nom.

I will reply more later but now dinner. Also this is the perfect thread to read before dinner ehm...Razz
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Fri Jun 16, 2017 11:57 pm

Heh, I like the Reweaving idea to counter Qlippothic magic - very much what we did to the air wall in the post office.

Yeah it is how we decided to do it since that fit the description of what Qlippothic magick do and while there are no system differences between Dynamic and Entropic magick like there are between Dynamic and Static I think there should be some so it can be countered in this way.

The Shattered Avatar Merit... It's a fairly close fit, but sufficiently off that working out the "value" of it would be somewhere I'd rather not tread, what with the added bonus of being able to pick up shards of any Avatar, and the disadvantage of not having any quality control whatsoever. Colin's going to have to have a LONG talk with Mia about that one... and the way she does it, I'm not sure she's going to be limited to Avatar 5, either - though that's a problem for the Council of Nine at a much later time. Wink

Shard collectives are similar but not quite they are miss matched amalgams of shards that have somehow managed to fit together while a shattered Avatar are a number of big, fairly complete pieces. Mia is not limited to Avatar Rating 5 but there is other issues. if you want to write the Merit on your sheet that works the exact number for a merit gained in play but you have some new flaws as well, Haunted, for Mrs Tilder want Colin to go mad and she is not stopping and Apprentice and really a full five point for that for while Anna is devoted, intelligent and respectful she A is a Nephandus and B while she is locked up she needs allot of time and attention not to have isolation damage and while Freddy, Kyle and Bee will eventually help out that is allot of work still and with her health problems, which will only grow at least as long as she is locked up and injected with that serum, it is not healthy and also it is 3ml per dose that hurts and repeated into the musculature of a child that will become chronic damage sooner or later, how traumatized she is, the social issues will have with he Traditions and if she make it through her trial she is likely to be Branded meaning even greater trauma, well that is not a simple thing Colin have taken on himself. Anna will need care, therapy and eventually instruction and guidance that is allot of work so that are a five point Apprentice flaw.

Languages:
-Languages are a merit now, but I just realised Enochian does not make sense then because it is related to magick - it might make sense to separate it out into what Larta Magic/hedge wizards can learn and awakened magick, in which case we might need to look at my character sheet.

We could put basically what a hedge wizard larta magi or well anyone can learn as a language merit then and actual Enochian as something of it's own, something that are a part of a Hermetic's tools and might not have a direct stat but is something they learn to speak.

Yeah, I was basing the Reweaving on that plus some of their other works. I think Colin's special ability to channel dirty tass with his rote might fall into something unique too

It is but it is possible to set up a system like that with Prime.

However, Enochian could be covered as Occult knowledge under the new rules as the type of enochian that non-hermetics would know (or sleepers). Enochian in the Order of Hermes Tradbook works differently than a regular language though. It is limited by character's Arete. So you can only know as many dots in it as your Arete rank, since that is the limit of spiritual awakening. I didn't consider that when I added it as a language under merit. It could still work out though. I do like how with regular knowledges, you get your level-4 specialties, which you don't as a Merit. I also used a Knowledge for Linguistics, which arguably is what the bonus roll is talking about in part, arriving at it in a different method.

Speak Enochian as in the spiritual magickal language would probably then be it's own knowledge and the more basic variant be under Occult. As for languages I see the point of both ways to do so, I think I tend to like the Resided version there best where you double so it is a knowledge and one dot give you one extra language two dots give you to, three give you four and so on, and you could then roll linguistics to try to figure out a language you did not know, that do seam to me to make more sense than having it as Merits.

Adley could take Speak Enochian as a skill of it's own and fill in another language for the slot under either the knowledge if we go with that or the merits if we keep that for the slot that Enochian used to occupy, he do speak allot of languages.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Warpmind on Sat Jun 17, 2017 12:23 am

Mia is not limited to Avatar Rating 5 but there is other issues. if you want to write the Merit on your sheet that works the exact number for a merit gained in play but you have some new flaws as well, Haunted, for Mrs Tilder want Colin to go mad and she is not stopping and Apprentice and really a full five point for that for while Anna is devoted, intelligent and respectful she A is a Nephandus and B while she is locked up she needs allot of time and attention not to have isolation damage and while Freddy, Kyle and Bee will eventually help out that is allot of work still and with her health problems, which will only grow at least as long as she is locked up and injected with that serum, it is not healthy and also it is 3ml per dose that hurts and repeated into the musculature of a child that will become chronic damage sooner or later, how traumatized she is, the social issues will have with he Traditions and if she make it through her trial she is likely to be Branded meaning even greater trauma, well that is not a simple thing Colin have taken on himself. Anna will need care, therapy and eventually instruction and guidance that is allot of work so that are a five point Apprentice flaw.
Eh, the Shattered Avatar/Shard Collective Merit... I think I'll skip noting it down as such, since it is so utterly unique to Mia. Haunted... would be suitable to wait until the agreed-upon time when Colin has made the memorial for Edmund. After all, Colin accepted that Mrs. Tilder would come to haunt him then, but he'll also be making preparations to deal with her as necessary - worst case scenario, have her destroyed, though that's going to be the last resort if all else fails. Apprentice... I'll add that one when the paperwork is in. Razz

Hum, that said, what sort of Merit or Background would be a suitable recognition for Colin having the Quintessence Siphon Rote published into the Mage equivalent of the Public Domain? Wink
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Sat Jun 17, 2017 2:59 am

I have not seen this but I can go looking for it in The Gude to the Technocracy and also the first edition Convention books though I would assume if it is the New World Order it is probably nto Gilgul as we know it but more well soul crushing mind control leaving the mage to broken to ever use magick again but here I am guessing. I would assume the Progenitors have some sort of lobotomy either physical or chemical and we know The Computer eat Avatars. All I can remember is that the Union do have Gilgul but not exactly how is done.
Originally I did not think the Union used Gilgul at all save feeding mages to the Computer, but it have been mentioned in blurbs here and there that they do and then generally with those they think are so innocent they do not deserve death, slavery or other horrible things but they need to be made safe, they are Gilgulled and either set free or given simple work and room and board, and those to dangerous to keep captive but you need information on them. I have not seen any information about how and I can only guess. But yes other than high ranking Void Engineers the only one legally capable would be living in the Ivory Tower unless they have made some drugs that do it or a machine and sent it out to various Constructs.

I didn't see it in Guide to the Techs either so it may just be a rumor or mismemory - at any rate it's not super important, we've got the baseline of what the Trads do and you mentioned what they think the Technos get up to, so that's probably enough unless we happen over it.

Well Bonisagus asked Guernicus to create the Gilgul ritual as a final insult to mages to really crossed the line, it was meant to be a way to scare other magi away from the most foul breaches of the Code and at first it was just a way to sever the Mage from their Avatar at the time they had Faunts and did not think it to be more than the Gift for Magick. I would assume the different versions of the rote could be explained with it being developed further over the years as more knowledge about Avatars have arisen. It is also interesting to Note that in earlier editions the flaw Sphere Inept one of the explanations suggested are a Lesser Gilgul. I have seen two things mentioned as such, the first version fo the rote that only separated mage and Gift and sent the latter on it's way, and the rote where pieces of a mage's Avatar is cut away, described as skinning the Avatar to remove permanent Paradox. Anyway developments of the Rote can explain why there are differences to it in different books.

Ouch, that's an interesting reason for that Flaw D:

It says the Order of Hermes have done 15 Gilguls which are more than twice what any other two Traditions have done together so it have been somewhere between well lower number is hard to guess at then but twenty or thirty and seventy five if we are talking exactly twice as many as the other Traditions but yes this is the rote we have been using in this game, the one done by six ritualists, a blurb in one of the Core books I think said it was six Masters of Spirit and I have gone with that rather than one Master and six assistants. But everything else but the rank of the assistants I have taken out of Revised Order of Hermes Tradition Book. And yes it can go very very wrong.

One Master of Spirit that knows the Rote can do it but you want it to go as quick as possible both because things can go wrong and because well...if you have a shred of humanity you want it to go as quick as possible so six ritualists are used but you could use more or less it is just the number that is Traditional.

I stand corrected re: the number of them, yeah that was from the Order book.

The information on Avatar shards can be found in the Ascension book the original close of the line. They are described as having parts of the original soul's mind and memories but they are simpler more childish and each shard often focus on one thing, so one shard is the nobility of the old Avatar and one is it's anger and so on, so without destroying the mind of that Avatar it do survive in some way and it do form splinter collectives when they manage to find a host to invade. This is what I used for Mia, I just assumed that a bit bigger hard had survived and that she is integrating other shard into herself and slowly gaining back her original full consciousness.

We also know that with the Shattered Avatar Merit bigger shards come back together so no unless you use the new ritual an Gilgulled Avatar is down but not completely out even if you do not play with the idea that it will reform itself in seven days, something similar can happen slowly over time in earlier editions as well.

Interesting!

That is a great idea. I can work with that for some story hooks.

Well, even if it turns out not to be true it is a potential reason to learn more about what is really going on - you can thank Thelma for that idea, and so it probably comes from study of antimonian praxis in part (which, come to think of it, if Kyle makes it to study it, will be a seriously hard thing for him and Jeffry, given his widderslainte nature).

[The idea of the sand comes from the Thelemic dust of the Abyss, "we attained to be the starry grains of gold dust in the sands of a slow river,"Liber VII, V:17, to be a grain of dust not an obelisk or monument of the old ways or the tower of the ego (it is a practice of humility) . From more literal and Fallen perspective such a thing could be desirable on their path to ultimate nothing. It fits thematically with the glass dragon/Black dragon and forging glass back together from sand, from Colin's talk with Anna though I just realised it. Adley sees breaking a soul as doing their work for the Nephandi in part, instead of the harder work of figuring out what to do, since most people seem to have given up even trying (though pragmatically he seems to think some might be past the point of redemption).]

Mia is not a shattered Avatar...well she is but not one as the ones in the Merit she is a shard collective from Asencion so she works a little differently and yes she will eat any Avatar shard she find, nom, nom nom
The Shattered Avatar Merit... It's a fairly close fit, but sufficiently off that working out the "value" of it would be somewhere I'd rather not tread, what with the added bonus of being able to pick up shards of any Avatar, and the disadvantage of not having any quality control whatsoever. Colin's going to have to have a LONG talk with Mia about that one... and the way she does it, I'm not sure she's going to be limited to Avatar 5, either - though that's a problem for the Council of Nine at a much later time. Wink
Shard collectives are similar but not quite they are miss matched amalgams of shards that have somehow managed to fit together while a shattered Avatar are a number of big, fairly complete pieces. Mia is not limited to Avatar Rating 5 but there is other issues.
Eh, the Shattered Avatar/Shard Collective Merit... I think I'll skip noting it down as such, since it is so utterly unique to Mia.

Make sense! Any particular avatar is going to be weird probably the more you know about it, the less it is just a stat for sure. Mia is her own being.

Speak Enochian as in the spiritual magickal language would probably then be it's own knowledge and the more basic variant be under Occult. As for languages I see the point of both ways to do so, I think I tend to like the Resided version there best where you double so it is a knowledge and one dot give you one extra language two dots give you to, three give you four and so on, and you could then roll linguistics to try to figure out a language you did not know, that do seam to me to make more sense than having it as Merits. Adley could take Speak Enochian as a skill of it's own and fill in another language for the slot under either the knowledge if we go with that or the merits if we keep that for the slot that Enochian used to occupy, he do speak allot of languages.

Alright, so shall we just use Occult for general knowledge of Enochian without the awakened component? Then the 2e/Rev way of doing languages then instead of by Merits, but keep Enochian as a Hermetic knowledge separate from those as a Secondary Skill, since that is capped by Arete rating?

Hum, that said, what sort of Merit or Background would be a suitable recognition for Colin having the Quintessence Siphon Rote published into the Mage equivalent of the Public Domain?

There is the Merit Reputation on p 42(2pts) from the 2e Book of Shadows: Add 3 dice to social dice pool-based rolls with those of your chantry or Tradition, must not take Notoriety - since Colin is an Orphan, that might be tweaked a bit? I didn't see this Merit listed in the new book.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Sat Jun 17, 2017 6:35 am

I didn't see it in Guide to the Techs either so it may just be a rumor or mismemory - at any rate it's not super important, we've got the baseline of what the Trads do and you mentioned what they think the Technos get up to, so that's probably enough unless we happen over it.

Well there is Thomas, Joakim's apprentice but asking him how the Technocrazy did it well, that would not be good so it is not likely to come up unless one of the characters are captured and then we can make something up if we do not find it in the books by then.

Ouch, that's an interesting reason for that Flaw D:

Well it is bound to give some plesant past life memories.

Well, even if it turns out not to be true it is a potential reason to learn more about what is really going on - you can thank Thelma for that idea, and so it probably comes from study of antimonian praxis in part (which, come to think of it, if Kyle makes it to study it, will be a seriously hard thing for him and Jeffry, given his widderslainte nature).

That makes sense and no it will not be an easy thing for Jeffry to teach Kyle and guide him through the study of as it would be very different for a widderslainte.

[The idea of the sand comes from the Thelemic dust of the Abyss, "we attained to be the starry grains of gold dust in the sands of a slow river,"Liber VII, V:17, to be a grain of dust not an obelisk or monument of the old ways or the tower of the ego (it is a practice of humility) . From more literal and Fallen perspective such a thing could be desirable on their path to ultimate nothing. It fits thematically with the glass dragon/Black dragon and forging glass back together from sand, from Colin's talk with Anna though I just realised it. Adley sees breaking a soul as doing their work for the Nephandi in part, instead of the harder work of figuring out what to do, since most people seem to have given up even trying (though pragmatically he seems to think some might be past the point of redemption).]

It do with with Anna's communications with her Avatar which she spoke to Colin about. But I had forgotten about that passage from Liber VII abtuallybut now that you mention it it is a good point of view and do give Adley even more reason to find an alternative to Gilgul with the Fallen as Gilgul is an unmaking which is what the Nephandi want.

Make sense! Any particular avatar is going to be weird probably the more you know about it, the less it is just a stat for sure. Mia is her own being.

She is her own being and there is no need for a stat on it she continue to do her own thing though she do have the strengths and drawbacks of a shard collective.

Alright, so shall we just use Occult for general knowledge of Enochian without the awakened component? Then the 2e/Rev way of doing languages then instead of by Merits, but keep Enochian as a Hermetic knowledge separate from those as a Secondary Skill, since that is capped by Arete rating?

That is what I was thinking would work if none of you guys have anything against doing it that way? And Adley can then just have the skill speak Enochian on the spiritual side of things at 2 or 3 then and then replace it's slot with another language from the points he have used on languages who then become the Linguistics knowledge and also yes Enocian is a Hermetic only secondary knowledge, the more mundane version of it as well are usually kept in the Order.

There is the Merit Reputation on p 42(2pts) from the 2e Book of Shadows: Add 3 dice to social dice pool-based rolls with those of your chantry or Tradition, must not take Notoriety - since Colin is an Orphan, that might be tweaked a bit? I didn't see this Merit listed in the new book.

Yeah that one tweaked a bit or the Background status will generally do it. Colin will get greater status among other mages as the creator of an important rote his words will be afforded some weight.

Eh, the Shattered Avatar/Shard Collective Merit... I think I'll skip noting it down as such, since it is so utterly unique to Mia. Haunted... would be suitable to wait until the agreed-upon time when Colin has made the memorial for Edmund. After all, Colin accepted that Mrs. Tilder would come to haunt him then, but he'll also be making preparations to deal with her as necessary - worst case scenario, have her destroyed, though that's going to be the last resort if all else fails. Apprentice... I'll add that one when the paperwork is in. Razz

That works for me.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Sat Jun 17, 2017 4:39 pm

I see that the Phylactery Merit works a little differently in BoS than in earlier versions. Earlier a Phylactery was what you where born with it was a condition of your Avatar that it choose to incarnate as a item or a place and this was very different from for example the manifest Avatar Merit that made your Avatar manifest but it was not that thing, if your Manifest Avatar where hurt it's manifestation would vanish for a while but it was just a reflection, it was still there in your soul and you could use magick at any time. With a phylactery that pendant was your Avatar and if it got damaged you where done. Now in the it seams many magi make their own phylactery or have it made so that is new and it seam that allot of the old flaws concerning foci that can not be abandoned, the ideas of Manifest Avatar and the like are baked into the Phylactery flaw. I would say one can do it both the old way and the new way in this game both can work at the same time. Connie is not a Phylactery she is a manifest Avatar for example. We have mentioned in game that making a Phylactery is extremely hard so it will probably remain so even if the text on that new flaw indicate it might be more common it is not our game since it have already been mentioned as being something exceptional with Cita creating the Heart of Horizon which is one, giant Phylactery ship.

One thing I did notice is really how similar the new idea of a phylactery is to what the members of House Criamon do with their own bodies and their imprints, not exactly the same but similar.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:18 pm

That is what I was thinking would work if none of you guys have anything against doing it that way? And Adley can then just have the skill speak Enochian on the spiritual side of things at 2 or 3 then and then replace it's slot with another language from the points he have used on languages who then become the Linguistics knowledge and also yes Enocian is a Hermetic only secondary knowledge, the more mundane version of it as well are usually kept in the Order.

That's fine with me if it is with everyone else.

I see that the Phylactery Merit works a little differently in BoS than in earlier versions...One thing I did notice is really how similar the new idea of a phylactery is to what the members of House Criamon do with their own bodies and their imprints, not exactly the same but similar.

I like having both options for the Phylactery (one where you're born with your avatar that way and one where you make yourself into one) and keep the Manifest Avatar as something else, not that I plan on using either. I just like the stories about liches having split up their soul into bits to become immortal and think that kind of idea would come from that - for both good and bad. People seeking to do it, like Tom Riddle/Voldemort and some that just awaken that way. You've said it's hard and rare and that makes sense, don't see any reason to change that. Making a ship-phylactery should be super hard. It reminds me of the spirit fetters too - like Danielle's cat. I think the Criamon prints are interesting, too.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:51 pm

I think having both is a good. I like having both options and manifest Avatar as it's own thing as well.

Hermetic lieches do something else, basically this is how the ritual in Ars work and it is basically the same mentioned in Order of Hermes Tradition book.

Step one: Remove all links you have to this world, that means end all friendships, kill your familiar if you have one, banish all arcane connections in short isolate yourself completely while you work on the other parts of the ritual.

Step two: Create a dagger using your own weight in silver exactly that you then refine down one hundred times until you have just enough left to create a dagger.

Step three: create a potion it have several hard to get ingredients but the base are your own personal longevity potion.

Step four: Open your veins with your dagger and drink said potion, you will bleed to death and if...if you have done everything right you will reawaken as a lich. You are not completely immortal, if you get blown to smithereens you will reform eventually, sans very nasty magick you will not age or die...ever and you are free to make new friendships. In Ars you no longer build up Twilight points which is the cap on how long a magus can live. If I do not remember it wrong, and I might be doing just that, it is mentioned at liches can not Ascend that their Avatar is bound into their existence and the two will never unwind again which do in a way tie into magi with Phylacteries and how their consciousness can be moved.

Well Danielle's Cat is her Conduit she is a special case since she is Risen. It works like this when a ghost become Risen their Shadow is bound into something they tressure, an object, a cat anything and this is now their conduit to the Shadowlands, if they loose their conduit they can no longer draw nourishment from their fetters and can not use their powers and slowly starve to death worse a wraith without their Shadow do not get a chance for a Harrowing when they are about to be destroy and they just fade away into Oblivion and become nothing. A Risen who have their conduit can abandon their flesh at any time and become a normal wraith but without it they are screwed.

I read up about Criamon Imprints today and it seams they have been changed around allot, in the first editions of Ars Criamon bound their Gifts into their Imprints and the Hermetic term Gift in Ars are the same as Fount. Later it became Talismans that they can make Talismans on their bodies and by that use Corpus Vis to enchant them and that is a BIG deal in Ars where "Resonance" so so much more important than in Mage you can not use Ignem Vis to heal a broken leg and vice versa not really and Corpus Vis is the most common to find as you can produce it of your own body but it can only be used for healing and things to do with human bodies but Criamon van use it for Talismans which make them secretly very kick ass. Now in Fifth Edition their Imprints are more ritual markings. I like the idea of them binding their Gifts to their bodies best and go with that usually. Mage do not speak about it directly but it is mentioned that their Imprints make them so sensitive that when Ravnos wakes up they all suddenly started screaming for blood and died from the psychic backlash which indicate that in Mage the marks are more than just ritual decoration and fall more towards the first idea of what the Criamon Imprints are so I have gone with that.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:16 pm

Dang, that's a hell of a ritual. Well, I guess befitting what they are doing. Just out of curiosity, is the avatar prevented from ascending only while the material body is tied to it? If the mage finally is destroyed, is it free to try again next incarnation like Archmages or is it more like when you try to become an Oracle?

Conduit, that's the term. That's right.

I read up about Criamon Imprints today...Mage do not speak about it directly but it is mentioned that their Imprints make them so sensitive that when Ravnos wakes up they all suddenly started screaming for blood and died from the psychic backlash which indicate that in Mage the marks are more than just ritual decoration and fall more towards the first idea of what the Criamon Imprints are so I have gone with that.

Wow, that's terrifying. Poor Criamon D: So in ArsM resonance can limit what you can do with what type of vis, where in Mage, if you use the system it can give you a bonus or penalty to difficulty, or sometimes other effects like taint if it's corrupted. That does make it harder if you need specific types for certain workings.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Warpmind on Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:49 pm

Well, even if it turns out not to be true it is a potential reason to learn more about what is really going on - you can thank Thelma for that idea, and so it probably comes from study of antimonian praxis in part (which, come to think of it, if Kyle makes it to study it, will be a seriously hard thing for him and Jeffry, given his widderslainte nature).

[The idea of the sand comes from the Thelemic dust of the Abyss, "we attained to be the starry grains of gold dust in the sands of a slow river,"Liber VII, V:17, to be a grain of dust not an obelisk or monument of the old ways or the tower of the ego (it is a practice of humility) . From more literal and Fallen perspective such a thing could be desirable on their path to ultimate nothing. It fits thematically with the glass dragon/Black dragon and forging glass back together from sand, from Colin's talk with Anna though I just realised it. Adley sees breaking a soul as doing their work for the Nephandi in part, instead of the harder work of figuring out what to do, since most people seem to have given up even trying (though pragmatically he seems to think some might be past the point of redemption).]
My brain's being silly. Now I have the mental image of "Thelema and Louise", thanks to what looks like a typo in the first sentence. Wink
As for breaking an Avatar - Colin doesn't necessarily see it as doing the work for the Nephandi; the grinding it to sand bit, yes, but that way isn't nothing - the fragments, however small, still exist, and can and will be assembled into a new Avatar... a different one, for certain, but a chance to start over.
For that matter, he might be beginning to suspect - or will at some not-too-distant point in time - that it's not just Dynamic-Static-Entropic that makes the Cycle, but the Qlippothic counterpart of each, as well - and that that may prove the key to changing one's Avatar; the Caul is just the shortcut the Fallen use... But that's just a hypothesis for now. Wink

There is the Merit Reputation on p 42(2pts) from the 2e Book of Shadows: Add 3 dice to social dice pool-based rolls with those of your chantry or Tradition, must not take Notoriety - since Colin is an Orphan, that might be tweaked a bit? I didn't see this Merit listed in the new book.
Yeah that one tweaked a bit or the Background status will generally do it. Colin will get greater status among other mages as the creator of an important rote his words will be afforded some weight.
Status sounds more appropriate, I think - "That philanthropic Orphan who made the rote to burn off corrupt Quintessence to spare us Jhor" would probably open doors in all the Traditions. Not all the doors, obviously, but the proverbial key to the city might not be entirely out of the picture.

As for the Enochian/Linguistics bit - am I understanding it correctly that we're sticking with Linguistics as a Knowledge rather than a Merit, and that Enochian becomes more of an Occult specialty than a Linguistics one?
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Sat Jun 17, 2017 10:02 pm

Dang, that's a hell of a ritual. Well, I guess befitting what they are doing. Just out of curiosity, is the avatar prevented from ascending only while the material body is tied to it? If the mage finally is destroyed, is it free to try again next incarnation like Archmages or is it more like when you try to become an Oracle?

I do not know I have not found any source that say but I would assume that if the lich are destroyed then the Avatar is freed to move on, it is just that destroying such a creature is not easy. It could be they become like Exemplars though where the Avatar is changed forever and merged with the mage until it can never Ascend and if the mage is destroyed then so is the Avatar.

Wow, that's terrifying. Poor Criamon D: So in ArsM resonance can limit what you can do with what type of vis, where in Mage, if you use the system it can give you a bonus or penalty to difficulty, or sometimes other effects like taint if it's corrupted. That does make it harder if you need specific types for certain workings.

Yes poor Criamon and that is why there are no more Criamon in Revised Canon or the new post Revised setting they all died. Sad And they are my favorite House as well.

Yes in Ars you have to have vis that are linked to the type of magick you are using, they are tied to the 15 arts of that system and can only be used for what they are linked to while in Mage you can use all type of Tass. Vim Vis are the rarest and you need it to do Talismans and Corpus is the most common so therefore House Criamon's ability to make Talismans out of themselves are a big deal. It is still costly though they get one point of Twilight for each Imprint. But yes Ars is far more limited when it comes to magick than Mage, it is still a powerful system but while there are no Paradox there is allot of other limiting factors.

As for breaking an Avatar - Colin doesn't necessarily see it as doing the work for the Nephandi; the grinding it to sand bit, yes, but that way isn't nothing - the fragments, however small, still exist, and can and will be assembled into a new Avatar... a different one, for certain, but a chance to start over.
For that matter, he might be beginning to suspect - or will at some not-too-distant point in time - that it's not just Dynamic-Static-Entropic that makes the Cycle, but the Qlippothic counterpart of each, as well - and that that may prove the key to changing one's Avatar; the Caul is just the shortcut the Fallen use... But that's just a hypothesis for now. Wink

Oh nice I can work with this idea as well. Very Happy

Status sounds more appropriate, I think - "That philanthropic Orphan who made the rote to burn off corrupt Quintessence to spare us Jhor" would probably open doors in all the Traditions. Not all the doors, obviously, but the proverbial key to the city might not be entirely out of the picture.

Colin is still an Orphan but he will be an Orphan of some renown so those in power might take the time to listen when he speaks, they probably will not take his advice but they will at least let him speak once that rote become known.

As for the Enochian/Linguistics bit - am I understanding it correctly that we're sticking with Linguistics as a Knowledge rather than a Merit, and that Enochian becomes more of an Occult specialty than a Linguistics one?

That is right, if Strife do not mind. And yes Enochian become an Occult specialty other than spiritual Enochian who is a Order of Hermes only knowledge linked to their Arete and magick.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Warpmind on Sat Jun 17, 2017 11:59 pm

Oh nice I can work with this idea as well. Very Happy
Well, yeah, the notion of the Dynamic-Qlippothic, Static-Qlippothic and Entropic-Qlippothic just makes sense, you know... It's the regular triad in a mirror darkly, not just a homogenous screwed-up parody of "our" magic.

Colin is still an Orphan but he will be an Orphan of some renown so those in power might take the time to listen when he speaks, they probably will not take his advice but they will at least let him speak once that rote become known.
Well, if he gets his House built, they probably will take his advice when they consult him for it. Wink
And some, such as Admiral Hastings, might well favor his suggestions, philanthropic Rote or not. Razz

That is right, if Strife do not mind. And yes Enochian become an Occult specialty other than spiritual Enochian who is a Order of Hermes only knowledge linked to their Arete and magick.
So in essence, it's a rules tweak that only affects him in any case. Works for me. Wink
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Sun Jun 18, 2017 1:15 am

Well, yeah, the notion of the Dynamic-Qlippothic, Static-Qlippothic and Entropic-Qlippothic just makes sense, you know... It's the regular triad in a mirror darkly, not just a homogenous screwed-up parody of "our" magic.

True that and I can work with it.

Well, if he gets his House built, they probably will take his advice when they consult him for it. Wink
And some, such as Admiral Hastings, might well favor his suggestions, philanthropic Rote or not. Razz

If he have a whole House backing him up then more will be forced to listen to him yes. As for Hastings yeah she do not care about social standing she cares what a person have to say.

So in essence, it's a rules tweak that only affects him in any case. Works for me. Wink

Very Happy
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:25 pm

My brain's being silly. Now I have the mental image of "Thelema and Louise", thanks to what looks like a typo in the first sentence. Wink

Razz Razz Razz Lol, I'm never not going to think that now...

As for breaking an Avatar - Colin doesn't necessarily see it as doing the work for the Nephandi; the grinding it to sand bit, yes, but that way isn't nothing - the fragments, however small, still exist, and can and will be assembled into a new Avatar... a different one, for certain, but a chance to start over.


Adley is not bound to completely agree with Colin's view about shattering avatars, since shards have proven so dangerous, he's had that seeking, he's worried that Colin is corrupted now by Cotta, seeing gilgul rites done, etc. And anyway, to him breaking an avatar is pretty wrong to do unless it's an extreme need to disperse a powerful destructive force. With the Fallen that are too powerful to live basically, then yeah he could see it from his point of view, if it could lead to their salvation down the line which is more hopeful that his current view. He wouldn't be opposed to helping them collect up that have been broken of course, that's different - they can re-create and try again. But for now he's wary of just anything coming together into a Frankenavatar (no offense to Mia lol). He doesn't have the same understanding of time or entropy that Colin does. I guess we'll see what else they find out, regarding their hypotheses xD They sure will have a lot to think about...if they live.

For that matter, he might be beginning to suspect - or will at some not-too-distant point in time - that it's not just Dynamic-Static-Entropic that makes the Cycle, but the Qlippothic counterpart of each, as well - and that that may prove the key to changing one's Avatar; the Caul is just the shortcut the Fallen use... But that's just a hypothesis for nowWell, yeah, the notion of the Dynamic-Qlippothic, Static-Qlippothic and Entropic-Qlippothic just makes sense, you know... It's the regular triad in a mirror darkly, not just a homogenous screwed-up parody of "our" magic.

Yeah that is an idea. I like the through a mirror darkly analogy, too.

Most of the time, in kabblalistic beliefs (which granted are not the whole of hermetic beliefs, but the idea of Qlippoth comes from Jewish kabbalah originally), the Qlippoth were created during the process of creation itself (that's why they are called the shadow tree, and qlippoth means shells or husk). For the moment, I reckon Adley would probably believe that the Caul(s) punch a 'hole' through Reality's protective veils, what keep reality from collapsing into Nil or Ayin/Ein (wither what came before creation in the tree, or before the concept of creation, even, /worse/ than the Abyss realm). The main difference between the unity of Ascension and Descention impulse to him is, at its most basic, that souls that want to Ascend may experience or act destructively, or suffer to learn yet they have the impulse to unify, to create and rebuild anew (Dynamic, Entropic, Static cycle). Nephandi don't want to rebuild the world or see a new one built nor keep the one that's around going. They just want it ended. To him, it's throwing the baby out with the bathwater (out of control Entropy). The extreme methods of some Technocrats I reckon would liken to out of control Static and out of control Dynamicism are represented by Maurauders.

As for the Enochian/Linguistics bit - am I understanding it correctly that we're sticking with Linguistics as a Knowledge rather than a Merit, and that Enochian becomes more of an Occult specialty than a Linguistics one?
That is right, if Strife do not mind. And yes Enochian become an Occult specialty other than spiritual Enochian who is a Order of Hermes only knowledge linked to their Arete and magick.
That is right, if Strife do not mind. And yes Enochian become an Occult specialty other than spiritual Enochian who is a Order of Hermes only knowledge linked to their Arete and magick.

Summarizing to make sure I got it right: If Colin or Adley want to learn a mundane language or conlang, it's going to be a Knowledge not a Merit now. Likewise, anyone can learn basic, bookstore Enochian under Occult (sp). If anyone wants to learn Order Enonciah (tm), they have to learn it as part of it's own skill, limited by Arete and it is not likely to be available to those out of the Order (I could think of some ways to learn it, but yeah).
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:39 pm

Summarizing to make sure I got it right: If Colin or Adley want to learn a mundane language or conlang, it's going to be a Knowledge not a Merit now.

Yes unless you mind of course.

Likewise, anyone can learn basic, bookstore Enochian under Occult (sp).

Yes but only the most basic are available through Dee's works and others based on that, the Order have more advanced mundane understanding of the language for their hedge wizards.

If anyone wants to learn Order Enonciah (tm), they have to learn it as part of it's own skill, limited by Arete and it is not likely to be available to those out of the Order (I could think of some ways to learn it, but yeah).

A spirit might teach someone or a Hermetic might break her oaths of secrecy and teach someone but generally this knowledge that will be it's own secondary knowledge so it is a bit cheaper to buy up but which is limited by Arete is only available to Awakened Hermetics.

I love your explanation on the Qlippothic Tree and Adley's views, it is just nothing for me to add to that. Very Happy
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Warpmind on Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:20 pm

Adley is not bound to completely agree with Colin's view about shattering avatars, since shards have proven so dangerous, he's had that seeking, he's worried that Colin is corrupted now by Cotta, seeing gilgul rites done, etc. And anyway, to him breaking an avatar is pretty wrong to do unless it's an extreme need to disperse a powerful destructive force. With the Fallen that are too powerful to live basically, then yeah he could see it from his point of view, if it could lead to their salvation down the line which is more hopeful that his current view. He wouldn't be opposed to helping them collect up that have been broken of course, that's different - they can re-create and try again. But for now he's wary of just anything coming together into a Frankenavatar (no offense to Mia lol). He doesn't have the same understanding of time or entropy that Colin does. I guess we'll see what else they find out, regarding their hypotheses xD They sure will have a lot to think about...if they live.
Well, it's not as though Colin actually agrees with the Gilgul practice. He knows personally how much it fucking hurts, after all. He sees it more, I think, as a needlessly cruel practice that is ultimately going to be futile at best, and harmful at worst. Because the tears in the rain aren't lost simply because you can't see them anymore... Razz
Also, Colin's not corrupted by Cotta, not by a long shot (yet), but if Adley voices those concerns in private with Colin, I think Adley's going to have his worries not so much soothed as redirected and amplified. Because Colin is pretty damned scared himself - just too British to show it right now. Wink

Yeah that is an idea. I like the through a mirror darkly analogy, too.

Most of the time, in kabblalistic beliefs (which granted are not the whole of hermetic beliefs, but the idea of Qlippoth comes from Jewish kabbalah originally), the Qlippoth were created during the process of creation itself (that's why they are called the shadow tree, and qlippoth means shells or husk). For the moment, I reckon Adley would probably believe that the Caul(s) punch a 'hole' through Reality's protective veils, what keep reality from collapsing into Nil or Ayin/Ein (wither what came before creation in the tree, or before the concept of creation, even, /worse/ than the Abyss realm). The main difference between the unity of Ascension and Descention impulse to him is, at its most basic, that souls that want to Ascend may experience or act destructively, or suffer to learn yet they have the impulse to unify, to create and rebuild anew (Dynamic, Entropic, Static cycle). Nephandi don't want to rebuild the world or see a new one built nor keep the one that's around going. They just want it ended. To him, it's throwing the baby out with the bathwater (out of control Entropy). The extreme methods of some Technocrats I reckon would liken to out of control Static and out of control Dynamicism are represented by Maurauders.
Nice summary. I myself know roughly bugger all about the Kabbalah, so this is a few insights for me, too. Smile
We might yet use some of this deduction in character later, to work on fixing the broken pieces of Avatar that Mia has adopted, and subsequently help restore the whole thing for others as well. Wink
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:33 pm

Well, it's not as though Colin actually agrees with the Gilgul practice. He knows personally how much it fucking hurts, after all. He sees it more, I think, as a needlessly cruel practice that is ultimately going to be futile at best, and harmful at worst. Because the tears in the rain aren't lost simply because you can't see them anymore... Razz
Also, Colin's not corrupted by Cotta, not by a long shot (yet), but if Adley voices those concerns in private with Colin, I think Adley's going to have his worries not so much soothed as redirected and amplified. Because Colin is pretty damned scared himself - just too British to show it right now

Oh yeah, didn't mean to imply he did agree with gilgul. But yeah, that should be an interesting convo  >. < Understandable for him to be scared. He just got a whole sphere from a Nephandi's soul...yikes!

Nice summary. I myself know roughly bugger all about the Kabbalah, so this is a few insights for me, too. Smile
We might yet use some of this deduction in character later, to work on fixing the broken pieces of Avatar that Mia has adopted, and subsequently help restore the whole thing for others as well


I didn't either before this character but I figured I should have a general idea of some main hermetic theories for an Oder character. Kabbalah is easier to grasp for me than alchemy, but there are a lot of relevant theories to work with from hermetic perspective, just taking the ideas from real practices plus what's written into the books. He has some other ideas about the pine cone too, which I suppose we shall see how that pans out. Adley's limitations aren't mine though, I'm sure he knows a great deal more than my occult rating ; )
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Warpmind on Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:35 pm

Oh yeah, didn't mean to imply he did agree with gilgul. But yeah, that should be an interesting convo >. < Understandable for him to be scared. He just got a whole sphere from a Nephandi's soul...yikes!
Not only did he get a whole new Sphere, but he got it in apparently permanent "On" mode. He's going to need some time to learn to "unsee" spirits, if he can... He just might not be able to work that out, since it's very difficult to not think about pink elephants... Wink
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:20 am

Well, it's not as though Colin actually agrees with the Gilgul practice. He knows personally how much it fucking hurts, after all. He sees it more, I think, as a needlessly cruel practice that is ultimately going to be futile at best, and harmful at worst. Because the tears in the rain aren't lost simply because you can't see them anymore... Razz
Also, Colin's not corrupted by Cotta, not by a long shot (yet), but if Adley voices those concerns in private with Colin, I think Adley's going to have his worries not so much soothed as redirected and amplified. Because Colin is pretty damned scared himself - just too British to show it right now. Wink

Stiff upper lip and all. Razz But no Colin is not corrupted, not yet but if Mia keep consuming corrupted shards then in time well...As for Colin's view on Gilgul, he have a rather direct and past life experience of it not being fun and with Mia recreating herself he probably yes will think that it is just a temporary solution to the Nephandi.

Nice summary. I myself know roughly bugger all about the Kabbalah, so this is a few insights for me, too. Smile
We might yet use some of this deduction in character later, to work on fixing the broken pieces of Avatar that Mia has adopted, and subsequently help restore the whole thing for others as well. Wink

I didn't either before this character but I figured I should have a general idea of some main hermetic theories for an Oder character. Kabbalah is easier to grasp for me than alchemy, but there are a lot of relevant theories to work with from hermetic perspective, just taking the ideas from real practices plus what's written into the books. He has some other ideas about the pine cone too, which I suppose we shall see how that pans out. Adley's limitations aren't mine though, I'm sure he knows a great deal more than my occult rating ; )

I have always found it easier to to understand alchemy than Cabala, even if my mother started giving me books about it when I was rather young. It is a interesting system to use for fiction though as there are so much symbolism to be explored and the pine cone will tie into that and other things. Adley probably knows far more than any of us combined though, I hope so or Jeffry will not be happy that his student have slept during lessons and there will be some floor scrubbing in his future. Razz Really old Hermetics might know that much about Cabala though, those from before it became a part of Hermetic ideas.

Not only did he get a whole new Sphere, but he got it in apparently permanent "On" mode. He's going to need some time to learn to "unsee" spirits, if he can... He just might not be able to work that out, since it's very difficult to not think about pink elephants... Wink

Ah yes that is going to be fun for him, there will be some interesting things to see. And yes Cotta's hards have brought some gifts...and other things with it. Razz I can see there will be some interesting in character conversations once the fighting in the Labyrinth is done though.
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by s7trif3 on Tue Jun 20, 2017 6:17 am

Not only did he get a whole new Sphere, but he got it in apparently permanent "On" mode. He's going to need some time to learn to "unsee" spirits, if he can... He just might not be able to work that out, since it's very difficult to not think about pink elephants... Wink

How to develop your third eye's eyelid...well, maybe Adley's explanation about how he showed him spirit sight would make more sense? Or, you know, not because he didn't actually explain it too well xD

have always found it easier to to understand alchemy than Cabala, even if my mother started giving me books about it when I was rather young. It is a interesting system to use for fiction though as there are so much symbolism to be explored and the pine cone will tie into that and other things. Adley probably knows far more than any of us combined though, I hope so or Jeffry will not be happy that his student have slept during lessons and there will be some floor scrubbing in his future. Razz Really old Hermetics might know that much about Cabala though, those from before it became a part of Hermetic ideas.

Yeah I get the general idea of alchemy, though I figure it's probably not the main focus of most Flambeau, even ones that do spiritual fighting. Course, potions are super useful things to know how to make!

I can see there will be some interesting in character conversations once the fighting in the Labyrinth is done though.

Most of it starting or ending with, 'you did what!/What happened???'
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Re: Rules discussion Gilgul, Branding and general shit that can happen to your Avatar.

Post by Anja Rebekka Schultze on Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:30 am

Alchemy is not the pain focus of the Flambeau, now they can be spiritual to but generally if they make potions it will not be through alchemy where the physical creation of a potion for example is just a representation of a spiritual process. Flambeau tend to be more hands on and practical, spending their lives in a laboratory to reach enlightenment are not something most of them would do. They are smart and scholarly as well of course all Hermetics are encouraged to be that but they are also very practical. I am sure some Flambeau are alchemists as well, but most of them refine themselves through the tasks they are doing, not through physical refinements that then become a vessel for inner journey, at least the way I see it. Not all Flambeau are the stereotype tossing fireballs everywhere, big angry magickal attack dogs, far from it but they are soldiers in many ways and trained as such and they are practical.

Well yes those conversation will be fun and I am pretty sure Adley will not approve of everything Colin have to tell him,there will be the scowling. Razz
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