*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
September 30, 2014, 10:04:02 PM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 92 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: 1 [2] 3
Print
Author Topic: [Sorcerer] I'm a clueless newbie with broad questions  (Read 7142 times)
redwalker
Member

Posts: 54


« Reply #15 on: April 26, 2004, 11:36:57 AM »

Quote from: b_bankhead
Hey ,  if mass machiavellian slaughter appeals to you try the Charnel Gods supplement for Sorcerer, It allows you to destroy the entire world! You might check out the review I did of the game here:

http://www.rpg.net/reviews/archive/9/9289.phtml


It sounds promising.

There was a theory called "Catastrophism."  I think it started in geology (perhaps with Lyell?)  and spread to Theosophy and Velikovsky and the like.

"Charnel Gods" sounds like a very useful supplement for widely read folks with knowledge of the historical fad of "Catastrophist" theories.

There, that's the relevant bit.  Now I'm going to ramble.

The whole Howard/Lovecraft milieu was only able to arise because the Occult Revival meant that a lot of early 20th century pop culture was concerned with Spiritualism, Theosophy, Cataclysm theories of archaeology/geology, eugenics, etc.

I was re-reading "People of the Black Circle" and it's really funny to see all the pieces that would have gotten Howard sued for inciting racial violence nowadays.

"Khemsa's sorcery was based on hypnotism, as is the case with most Eastern magic.  The way has been prepared for the hypnotist for untold centuries of generations who have lived and died in the firm conviction of the reality and power of hypnotism, building up, by mass thought and practice, a colossal though intangible atmosphere against which the individual, steeped in the traditions of the land, finds himself helpless.

But Conan was not a son of the East.  Its traditions were meaningless to him;  he was the product of an utterly alien atmosphere.  Hypnotism was not even a myth in Cimmeria.  The heritage that prepared a native of the East for submission to the mesmerist was not his."  - R.E. Howard and L. Sprague de Camp, "People of the Black Circle."

I've got to wonder how much of that was originally Howard and how much of that was L. Sprague de-Militant-Atheist-If-You-Dare-To-Discuss-Occultism-I-Will-Attack-You-Camp.
In part it's the British imperialist in Afghanistan explaining to the folks back home why colonial violence is justified against the wogs;  in part it's the pop-culture of occultism.  Howard attempted to rebel against Christianity to some degree;  Lovecraft claimed to be an atheistic materialist, but his dreams were those of a natural mystic and shaman who does not possess the strength of will to suppress or control his instinct toward mysticism.

The atmosphere of early 20th-century adventure was often inspired by colonial adventures.  Howard's Cimmeria was somewhere around Scotland;  the setting of the story is based on Afghanistan;  the characters and conflicts were probably inspired by colonial British wars in Afghanistan.  So the story is saying, "Yes, the wogs believe in hypnosis because they are inferior -- but we -- a more worldly-wise race -- can push them off their land and take whatever loot appeals to us..."

I can't believe that I'm so wordy that I actually typed all of that.  I need to shut up.
Logged
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 16490


WWW
« Reply #16 on: April 26, 2004, 12:03:50 PM »

Hello Red,

Are you still asking any questions about Humanity? I'd like to help, but after two readings through this thread, I really have no idea what you specific questions are.

I can work with this statement, though:

Quote
Being a highly principled, largely self-reliant man dedicated to a life of violence for the sake of principle/honor/duty is the core of the stereotype.

Now, in the context of gritty settings, the self-reliant killer is often an outlaw, a yakuza, or some other glamorous rebel -- but I always play my outcasts as if I wanted some audience to feel, deep down, that the outcast is a good guy.


You've noticed, I'm sure, that every single character that can be referenced for this stereotype/archetype is also a Big Softy. Show him a struggling young couple, a stray animal, an old but still feisty craftsman, or anything similar, and he'll put his blood and bones on the line to help them.

Yup. Conan. Mad Max. Batman. The whole bunch of'em, all softies.  You do see that, right? The inability to see that characterizes a large number of role-players who continually want to play vicious bad-asses who are not Softies and then wonder why no one wants to play with them, or why they never quite feel like they get the character "right."

Counter-examples include William Munny in Unforgiven, who in Sorcerer terms ends up with Humanity at a thumpin' zero. Does that make sense?

Best,
Ron
Logged
neelk
Member

Posts: 126


« Reply #17 on: April 26, 2004, 02:04:57 PM »

Quote from: Ron Edwards

You've noticed, I'm sure, that every single character that can be referenced for this stereotype/archetype is also a Big Softy. Show him a struggling young couple, a stray animal, an old but still feisty craftsman, or anything similar, and he'll put his blood and bones on the line to help them. [...] Yup. Conan. Mad Max. Batman. The whole bunch of'em, all softies.  You do see that, right? The inability to see that characterizes a large number of role-players who continually want to play vicious bad-asses who are not Softies and then wonder why no one wants to play with them, or why they never quite feel like they get the character "right."


Good point. The underlying reason that "softiness" works is because it creates a space for the player of the badass to accept the other players' offers (in the sense of improv), rather than blocking them. A stone-cold badass who cares for no one and nothing is a hard character to motivate, because it seems like it's in-character for him to reject the overtures other characters make. So such characters are lumps, except when directly threatened with personal harm. (In a D&D game I was in, there was one guy who kept making characters like this, and eventually the other players just started calling his PC "Mercenary X", regardless of his nominal name or personality. It was a little cruel, but it got the point across.)

This why the canonical structure of a badass movie is a) the main character wanders into a bad situation, b) fails to do anything about it beyond primitive self-defense because he's a cold-hearted badass, c) makes friends with someone and gets humanized, d) the situation worsens and the friend is hurt, e) the badass enacts a righteous beat-down on behalf of the people he newly cares about. Critically, note that he only becomes capable of taking such positive action after he starts accepting offers.

You can ring very interesting changes on the badass archetype by working out out  novel reasons for the character to accept offers. Take the movie version of LA Confidential, and look at Guy Pearce's Ed Exley. He was a 'clean' cop, in the sense that he obeyed the law and refused to take bribes, but he was also a cold and distant man. At this point, he's your basic code-of-honor loner. You pretty much know exactly what he's gonna do, and it's a pretty predictable and limited behavioral repertoire. But instead of empathy being the trait that leads him to start accepting offers, it's ambition. His mix of rigid integrity and overwhelming ambition works out in a really compelling way. (The movie also has Russell Crowe playing Bud White, who is a much more conventional badass.)
Logged

Neel Krishnaswami
DannyK
Guest
« Reply #18 on: April 26, 2004, 02:19:01 PM »

Man, you said it better than I would.  A lot of the time in movies and novels, the story is about the one time the tough guy goes soft.  Rick in Casablanca sticks his neck out for no one... until he does.  

Most of the time, the tough guy leaves town after things are wrapped up; it would be too hard to stick around people who know his soft side, I guess.

I'd like to point out a couple counter-cases, though:
--In Red Harvest (filmed as Last Man Standing, Yojimbo, and many others), the protagonist sets two opposing gangs at each other's throats, for no reason stronger than his own dislike.  
--In Maltese Falcon , the tough detective ultimately doesn't go soft, but sends the dame to jail.  

Of course, they're both by the same author, Dashiell Hammett.
Logged
redwalker
Member

Posts: 54


« Reply #19 on: April 26, 2004, 04:18:09 PM »

Quote from: jburneko


3) A lot of people have the impression that Sorcerer is some kind of deep psycho-drama designed to produce supernatural versions of Steel Magnolias.


That made me chuckle.  Good one-liner.




Quote from: jburneko

So let me show you how Humanity works in a violent/adventurous setting by doing something that Ron really hates, mapping Humanity to a pre-existing story.  But please bear in mind that I'm doing this for illustration purposes only with A LOT of assumptions.  
...

They arrive late and are supprised to find a small peasent family living nearby.  They decide to pay the peasents for room and board.  But in addition they proceed to entertain the peasents with stories and magic tricks.  (Humanity Gain checks for both characters).


Okay, you could give out Humanity Gain checks for something like that.  

I haven't had a chance to run the game yet.  I suspect that I would *not* give Humanity Gain checks very often.  I *would* give a lot of Humanity Loss checks, and I would probably use Angels, from "The Sorcerer's Soul" to bail out the players if the dice went against them and the story needed them alive.


Quote from: jburneko

See?  No deep psycho-drama.  Just a simple action-adventure story about two guys going to get some jewels in a house.

Does that help?

Jesse


That does help somewhat.  

What it comes down to is what I wrote above -- if I emphasize characters who have inviolable codes of conduct, who hold themselves apart from friends, lovers, etc. so that they will always be ready to commit unrestrained violence -- then those characters have to have some kind of vulnerability in their code before they can be Sorcerer characters.

For example, suppose you have two paladins.  One is married with kids.  Fine:  he's vulnerable because he'll do anything to protect his wife and kids.  But suppose the other is chaste, unsentimental, entirely dedicated to an abstract and bodiless God.  He would have to be willing to protect the doctrine from heresy, the icons from sacrilege, the temples from demolition.  He would have to get as sentimental about the sacred chalices of his religion as the married paladin would get about his kids.

I can easily imagine a character who isn't even sentimental about that.  A character who is (e.g.) a Taoist and/or Raja-Yoga mystic.  This character sits around in a jungle, forages for enough food to stay alive, and contemplates eternity, indifference, and other metaphysical abstractions.  You can capture and torture him, but he's strong-willed enough to make sure that he dies under torture rather than betray his ideals.  Characters like that aren't suitable for Sorcerer -- I haven't looked at TROS but they might well be unsuitable for that, too.

There are a lot of unmoveable wise men in old stories -- but they're supporting characters, not protagonists.  An ancient sage isn't motivated to action by Kickers.  He has renounced and transcended his personality.  He makes a lousy fictional character, and a lousier Sorcerer character, because he doesn't react well to Kickers and bangs.
Sorcerer characters should be a little panicked and under a lot of stress.  Truly tranquil sages never panic.

Kickers demand a strong personal reaction, and a totally tranquil Taoist-Yogi type is beyond personal reactions.   Sorcerer demands the possibility of addiction, corruption, betrayal of one's ideals -- and a true sage has worked through that.

However, a related archetype that might work well is the "Pure Fool" or "Holy Innocent," as seen is Wolfram von Eschenbach's _Parsival_ or the anime "Irresponsible Captain Tylor."  The "Pure Fool" is a man in a body:  he is archetypically young and open to influences.  His reactions are surprising, but he is still active enough to have a personal reaction to situations.

So if I ever get some players who are mature enough to handle this game, I'll tell them : "You can be innocent like Irresponsible Captain Tylor, but you can't be a totally indifferent yogi or Taoist!"
Logged
redwalker
Member

Posts: 54


« Reply #20 on: April 26, 2004, 04:55:35 PM »

Thanks to everyone for good points:
Quote from: Ron Edwards
Hello Red,

Are you still asking any questions about Humanity? I'd like to help, but after two readings through this thread, I really have no idea what you specific questions are.
....

Counter-examples include William Munny in Unforgiven, who in Sorcerer terms ends up with Humanity at a thumpin' zero. Does that make sense?


Thanks. Actually, the first few posts helped me understand that my problem wasn't just with Humanity.  I need a stable, mature group of gamers before I can hammer out any decent premise for Humanity in Sorcerer.  I don't have that group yet.  Getting that group would solve the Humanity problem.

And then there's a separate issue.  I often make William Munny type characters -- which is heartily appreciated in DeadLands, RoleMaster, etc. with the right group.  But that only works when the whole group knows each other well and has the right dynamic going, and it wouldn't work with Sorcerer.  

A similar character is Clint Eastwood in "Pale Rider."  Great character in the right role-play context.  Probably wouldn't work in Sorcerer.

*However*, as I pointed out in an earlier post, it *would* be possible to make a Sir-Galahad-type paladin who had no sentimentality about human beings, but did have sentimentality about sacred taboos -- consecrated Communion wafers, crucifixes, cathedrals, etc.

That is the kind of killer who would burn a suspected witch to death, thinking it would save her soul, but put his life and limb at risk to prevent someone from urinating on a crucifix.  And while they might not hack it as PCs, they might make very good villains for Sorcerer.

If I can make good villains like that, and I can find a group of PCs who can do the emotional stuff, then I might be able to run this game after all.

Quote from: neelk

A stone-cold badass who cares for no one and nothing is a hard character to motivate, because it seems like it's in-character for him to reject the overtures other characters make. So such characters are lumps, except when directly threatened with personal harm.


Sometimes in D&D-like games, I've played stone-cold killers who *were* secretly motivated to kill.  They acted controlled, but in fact they were really driven by bloodlust.  So they kept the plot moving, because they were always eager to find new victims.  

I think the movie "Deadwood" had a character called "Johnny Ringo."  Some supporting character said of him : "He's got a hole in him, and no amount of blood or killing can fill it up."  I've run a lot of characters like that.

That kind of character just can't work in Sorcerer.



Quote from: DannyK


I'd like to point out a couple counter-cases, though:
--In Red Harvest (filmed as Last Man Standing, Yojimbo, and many others), the protagonist sets two opposing gangs at each other's throats, for no reason stronger than his own dislike.  


Yeah, that kind of attitude got my characters through a lot of adventures.  Secretly, these characters wanted destruction, and possibly they were justified.  The people they killed were not exactly admirable.  But the stone-cold killers were not admirable protectors, they were only doing the right thing by accident.

Bottom line: violence-oriented games with large combat components are a great way to collectively create violent stories with William Munny-style stone-cold killers.  A lot of gaming groups play these games for the imagined violence, not for deep role-play.  I need to deepen my character personalities if I want to create any PCs.
Logged
Bob McNamee
Member

Posts: 685


« Reply #21 on: April 26, 2004, 06:21:45 PM »

If Sorceror doesn't work for you and your group-to-be...

You might find Clinton Nixon's game Paladin interesting.

There's been a few playtest reports that the 'good guys' ended up acting like folks you wouldn't really like to see riding into your town because of the Code they follow.

http://www.indie-rpgs.com/viewtopic.php?t=5259&highlight=paladin

Clinton's games are available at this website
http://www.anvilwerks.com/index.php/Anvilwerks/Anvilwerks

and there is a Anvilwerks forum in the Independant Game Forums here at the Forge.

Enjoy,
Logged

Bob McNamee
Indie-netgaming- Out of the ordinary on-line gaming!
Alan
Member

Posts: 1012


WWW
« Reply #22 on: April 26, 2004, 06:25:22 PM »

Quote from: redwalker
... I suspect that I would *not* give Humanity Gain checks very often.  I *would* give a lot of Humanity Loss checks, ...


One thing that is crucially important for Sorcerer to work: your group - YOUR GROUP - not just the gamemaster - must agree on and understand how they will earn Humanity checks - up or down.  And in play those standards must be applied consistently.  If one player gets a humanity increase check for some kind of action, another player must have a reasonable expectation to get an increase check if he takes the same sort of action.  

Your players may start out constently earning Humanity decrease checks, but they might surprise you and start taking actions looking specifically for increase checks.  When they do, and if those actions meet the agreed on criteria, you must allow them increase checks.

Without this kind of consistent standard, you will not experience what is special about Sorcerer.
Logged

- Alan

A Writer's Blog: http://www.alanbarclay.com
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 16490


WWW
« Reply #23 on: April 26, 2004, 06:47:06 PM »

Hi Red,

I disagree with you that Munny-type characters "wouldn't work" in Sorcerer. They work when the group appreciates and enjoys the character's downward, hellward slide for what it is: a cautionary lesson for the rest of us. Sorcerer is superb for tragedies because it actually includes a "moral loss" condition which itself may underpin a story's outcome. And that condition (Humanity 0) is not mechanically mandated; i.e., a character with Humanity 1 is not more likely to do a Humanity-decreasing act than anyone else. It's up to the player whether he keeps risking himself at the edge or changes his ways. A player who chooses to lose his character in the sense of providing a fantastic "descent into darkness" is a very valuable member of the group.

What won't work is the adolescent pseudo-character that you don't see as a primary protagonist in movies, novels, short stories, and plays: the "I'm sooo bad and sooo cold, no one messes with me" fantasy of black-clad lethality. These characters are observed only as cautionary characters, the kind which demonstrate where the protagonist will end up if he doesn't behave differently. Johnny Ringo is an excellent example.

It is a classic developmental process for a young author: making up slit-eyed assassins who care for no one, kill anyone, sneer at everyone, and punish those who dis them. It is, as I say, an adolescent fantasy (and not in the literary sense of the term), and people grow out of it - if they don't, the stories have no interest for anyone besides the author.

It fascinates me that Conan was not written in this fashion by Howard, but was retrofitted into such a mold via pastiche authors and filmmakers. But I wrote a whole supplement about that, so I'll leave it there. I should also point out, though, that Dirty Harry (first movie) and Jules (in Pulp Fiction) are not examples of the lethal-adolescent-badass fantasy either.

Danny, I disagree with you about both stories. Sam Spade chooses loyalty to his dead partner's memory over his affair with the partner's wife (who murdered her husband). That's what the whole conflict of the book is about; the stupid bird is an elaborate distraction. The hero of Red Harvest does indeed find a couple of people to care about in the town; you just have to remember to watch for it halfway through.

Best,
Ron
Logged
hardcoremoose
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 669


WWW
« Reply #24 on: April 26, 2004, 06:52:11 PM »

Redwalker,

I'm going to go ahead and say that the William Munny archetype would work fine in Sorcerer, and here's why:

I've wondered for a while just what peoples' expectations are when it comes to Humanity in Sorcerer.  We know that it's the Humanity that drives the premise, and that by answering the Humanity question we are also answering the premise, and therefore creating "theme" or a "moral to the story" or what have you.  But the point of Sorcerer isn't necessarily to create a "moral" that you agree with or that represents a personal worldview; it's about creating a portrayal of humanity that resonates emotionally with you and the other players on some level, and those emotions can be ones of agreement or disagreement, satisfaction or dissatisfaction, joy or revulsion.

It seems to me like you have this expectation that to play Sorcerer, you need to create a character with the capacity for real Humanity, which just isn't so.  Now, Sorcerer tends to surprise people anyway, in that they find themselves making decisions in play they never would have expected to make, creating reversals that demonstrate Humanity almost unintentionally.  But ignoring that, there's no reason you couldn't play a stone-cold killer who creates a compelling image of Humanity by virtue of his inhumanity.  All he needs is to be interesting on some level, and the rest will take care of itself, in that the emotional resonance will fall into place.

You talk about "accidental Humanity" and seem to think it's incongruous with Sorcerer for some reason.  I couldn't disagree more.  There's almost nothing more emotionally provocative than seeing a hated character stay in the game though totally undeserving of it, and I wrote Charnel Gods to facilitate that.

- Scott

*  whoops...cross-posted with Ron.
Logged
Jaik
Member

Posts: 49


« Reply #25 on: April 26, 2004, 07:31:44 PM »

Just a small note, Johnny Ringo and the line about him are from "Tombstone".  I love that movie.  How about looking at Wyatt and Doc as Sorcerer characters?  Doc seems much like a hard-hearted, sarcastic, kill-you-for-lookin'-at-him character, but has a twist that makes him one of the most sympathetic characters in the movie, while Wyatt is almost the inverse, beginning with lots of connections and relationships and codes and at the end, he basically rides all over the West killing people in cold blood.
Logged

For the love of all that is good, play the game straight at least once before you start screwing with it.

-Vincent

Aaron
redwalker
Member

Posts: 54


« Reply #26 on: April 26, 2004, 09:30:15 PM »

Quote from: Ron Edwards





What won't work is the adolescent pseudo-character that you don't see as a primary protagonist in movies, novels, short stories, and plays: the "I'm sooo bad and sooo cold, no one messes with me" fantasy of black-clad lethality. These characters are observed only as cautionary characters, the kind which demonstrate where the protagonist will end up if he doesn't behave differently. Johnny Ringo is an excellent example.

It is a classic developmental process for a young author: making up slit-eyed assassins who care for no one, kill anyone, sneer at everyone, and punish those who dis them. It is, as I say, an adolescent fantasy (and not in the literary sense of the term), and people grow out of it - if they don't, the stories have no interest for anyone besides the author.


Well, those kinds of characters show up in nonfiction.

Charles Whitman: ex-Marine, shot lots of civilians from the clocktower of the University of Texas at Austin

Pol Pot: nicest guy you could ever meet, charming as heck, convinced his fellow citizens to kill 25% of the population.  Shortly before his death, possibly from poison an possibly from old age, he was still convinced of his innocence and asked an interviewer, "Do you think I did these things because I was a cruel person?"

John Brown: charismatic terrorist who contributed to the American Civil War.  He was so persuasive that several of his numerous children raided Harper's Ferry alongside him rather than being sent off to continue the family name.

The list goes on.

Maybe the inhuman killer makes bad literature, but he's *all* *over* the real-life stories of history.  Maybe we tend to forget the facts of history because it makes bad literature.

Stories of zero-empathy killlers may have no literary value, but they are an increasingly common description of real life.  I don't think zero-empathy killers see themselves as very important -- they're usually willing to die for their ideals.  And they usually see themselves as very threatened.

None of these men can compromise their principles.  They have already been pushed to the last wall, and their principles are all they have.  They kill brutally because their principles have already taken over the black hole where their empathy ought to be.  There's no point making them into Sorcerer characters because a good Sorcerer character should have various levels of transgressions that he can make, and the story should be about him deciding which transgressions are worth less than the power he will get in return.

Aside from the stone-cold killers, there's an interesting group of highly brutal killers who exhibit considerably more shame about their killings.  General Nguyen Ngoc Luan wasn't happy about shooting the VC prisoner and getting photographed while doing it.  He saw no other way to fight.  That's the typical outlook, perhaps, that would work for a Sorcerer protagonist.  They're sliding slowly toward inhumanity, but they don't have any viable way out.

Nguyen Ngoc Luan had various lines he didn't want to cross.  He didn't want a war in the first place.  He didn't want a dirty fight. He didn't want to shoot spies on the battlefield.  He didn't want a lot of things, but he felt compelled to do them by the demands of his situation.  He traded his comfort zone (humane conduct) for power (to fight for his country).

By contrast, John Brown simply couldn't cross the line of disrespecting God.  Whatever he did, he was convinced it was the *only* thing he could do to please God.  Sure, he got his children killled, but that was a minor detail.  Sure, he helped to start a brutal and horrible war, but God wanted it, so far as John Brown could tell.  Sure, he suffered physical pain, but that was nothing compared to the pain of Hell and the glory of Heaven.  John Brown can't cross any lines.  He can't trade his comfort zone for power.  And John Brown doesn't think he's a big deal -- he thinks he's just a humble servant of the Almighty.  John Brown doesn't think he's an incarnation of lethality -- he thinks he's a fluffy white lamb prancing with joy for God.

A modern-day example might help:  A certain James C. Kopp, a criminally insane sniper, shot at least one physician dead because that physician provided abortions.  This Kopp called himself a Lamb of God.  He didn't think he was an angel of death -- he thought he was a pudgy, defenseless infant.  And yet, I think most people would say he had the real-life equivalent of a zero Humanity score.  

Zero empathy killers aren't primarily fictitious.  They're primarily part of real life.  Perhaps role-playing games shouldn't include them, but they shouldn't be mistaken for figments of adolescent imagination.
Logged
redwalker
Member

Posts: 54


« Reply #27 on: April 26, 2004, 09:48:11 PM »

Quote from: Bob McNamee
If Sorceror doesn't work for you and your group-to-be...

You might find Clinton Nixon's game Paladin interesting.

There's been a few playtest reports that the 'good guys' ended up acting like folks you wouldn't really like to see riding into your town because of the Code they follow.

http://www.indie-rpgs.com/viewtopic.php?t=5259&highlight=paladin

Clinton's games are available at this website
http://www.anvilwerks.com/index.php/Anvilwerks/Anvilwerks

and there is a Anvilwerks forum in the Independant Game Forums here at the Forge.

Enjoy,


It looks a lot easier to run than Sorcerer.  Even a beer-and-pretzels gamer can understand that if he breaks his rules, he's going to suffer the consequences.

Conversely, trying to find a group of players who could hammer out a decent law of Humanity for Sorcerer would be pretty tough for me.  I can gather folks who are willing to talk about action/fantasy movies and roll dice, but I doubt we could agree about nontrivial ethical issues.

I intiially thought that it would be relatively easy -- just make Humanity equal to Christian grace.  But there aren't too many urgent Christian missions of mercy that require the Demonic powers offered by Sorcerer.  The average Christian would rather have miraculous healing powers, or possibly miraculous feed-the-hungry-with-loaves-and-fishes powers.  

(The White Wolf game Demon, the game In Nomine, and many others have dealt with angel/demon conflicts.  None of them really sang to me as much as standard Wraith, where you can IMHO do a nice Christian riff on trying to be a good Christian after you're dead but neither in hell nor heaven.)

I mean, you could decide that God was a cruel and jealous God who wanted his followers to burn down mosques, reproductive health clinics, and the like, but that's just another hack-and-slash game with flavor text by Jack Chick.  Who in his right mind would want to play that?
Logged
DannyK
Guest
« Reply #28 on: April 26, 2004, 10:17:46 PM »

John Brown would make a great Sorcerer character.  Are you kidding?  I mean, he was an utterly demonic guy fighting on the side of the angels -- or at least that's how he seems to me.  Melville thought he was uncanny too, if you read his poem The Portent , about a picture of John Brown hanging from the gallows:
Quote

Bt the streaming beard is shown
(Weird John Brown),
The meteor of the war.


Hmm.  Civil War sorcerer, anyone?  I'd call it "The Better Angels of Our Nature."

But I'm really threadjacking.  I'll stop now.
Logged
Trevis Martin
Member

Posts: 499


« Reply #29 on: April 27, 2004, 12:07:23 AM »

Quote from: redwalker


It looks a lot easier to run than Sorcerer.  Even a beer-and-pretzels gamer can understand that if he breaks his rules, he's going to suffer the consequences.

Conversely, trying to find a group of players who could hammer out a decent law of Humanity for Sorcerer would be pretty tough for me.  I can gather folks who are willing to talk about action/fantasy movies and roll dice, but I doubt we could agree about nontrivial ethical issues.


Sorcerer isn't as hard to run as you think.  If you prep correctly it runs smooth as silk.  It just goes in a little different direction is all.  I find that paladin and sorcerer can feel very similar given the right humanity definition.

And regarding violating humanity vs disobeying your code...it comes down to the same thing.  I mean if your players can understand one, then they can understand the other.

Forgive me if I'm misunderstanding you but all the references I've read from you that talk about how hard it would be to come up with a humanity definition everyone agrees on leads me to suspect that you are seeing humanity as something that the characters must try to conform to during the game.  This isn't the case.

Humanity is what the characters react to, interact with, and comment on (with their actions) during the game.  It is not a limiter of behavior.  The same is actually true of Paladin.   Your character can always break the laws of his code (and sometimes its unavoidable) but, simply put, there are serious consequences for doing so.

Secondly, humanity and other options in playing sorcerer are rarely hashed out of nothing.  It works best if someone presents a vision for the group to work with and then alterations are made to taste and by consensus rather than a whole group trying to make the thing out of whole cloth.

Quote
I intiially thought that it would be relatively easy -- just make Humanity equal to Christian grace.  But there aren't too many urgent Christian missions of mercy that require the Demonic powers offered by Sorcerer.  The average Christian would rather have miraculous healing powers, or possibly miraculous feed-the-hungry-with-loaves-and-fishes powers.


If you've read Sorcerer's soul I think you've seen the first option for running angels is to run them just like demons.  I mean angels are beings so alien that interacting with them by its nature is destabilizing.
Healing powers?  No prob, perception (health) and vitality, conferred on the sorcerer.

check out this link

Sorcerer: A Catholic Roleplaying Game

regards,

Trevis
Logged
Pages: 1 [2] 3
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!