*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
August 01, 2014, 10:32:19 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: 70 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: [1]
Print
Author Topic: [Mortal Coil] Some Rules-related Questions  (Read 6317 times)
daedalvs
Member

Posts: 7


« on: June 05, 2007, 12:43:14 AM »

Hello everyone!

Quite some time has passed since I posted a bunch of questions in the thread relating the AP we did here in Spain, named "Malleus Malleficarum", and received no reply Sad As I posted them embedded in a NPC post, I'm afraid they passed unnoticed, so I'm re-posting them in a separate message. Anyway, I apologize for the repost, as reading the same things twice is not as intended in forums...

Now for the questions:

1. Are magical aptitudes stated correctly (referring to the PC's in the "Malleus Mallficarum" thread)? I mean, should the Prayer be covered by Priest or Bishop? I think it's not the case, taking Savonarola as an example: his Bishop level 3 accounts for his hierarchy and/or Faith, but his Prayer aptitude should be lower...

2. The level in the magical aptitudes should be important? How can this be supported by the rules? That is, could anyone state some examples for this? One thing I have  in my mind deals with a Price for a magical fact that forces a minimum level in the aptitude in order to function, but what about using the aptitude in conflicts?

3. Are "compound" prices legal or can be veto-ed by the players or the GM as abussive?

4. As players advance in the game, they can use their Power tokens to raise PCs' Aptitudes. Can the GM use his/hers to advance the NPCs' to keep up some balance? I'm not meaning to spend the spare tokens I still have at the end of the session just for pumping up mi NPCs. Should I better use them in conflicts as Action tokens instead?

Thanks in advance. Keep on gaming! Wink
Jokin
Logged
RPL
Member

Posts: 61


« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2007, 01:50:56 PM »

Hi,

I'm going to play Mortal Coil next week and before that I've only played it once, so take my responses with the appropriate grain of salt.

1) I think this is kind of a group thing and a consensus of what the aptitudes really mean and if they make sense for the character, just make sure that the same aptitude means the same in two different characters, otherwise it will be chaos.

2) This is kind of a personal thing for a character, probably a character with high magical aptitude scores is probably going to have lower scores on others and going to use magic a lot, so I guess importance depends on the player. On your idea about using minimum scores has a price... I wouldn't do it, but it purely a matter of personal taste, and if Mortal Coil is anything, that thing is group-dependable hehe.

3) I'm sorry, I don't get what you mean by "compound" prices.

4) The way I read the rules only the players can upgrade the scores of their PCs, I probably would never give my tokens (has a GM) to upgrade a score on and NPC, if for no other reason that it would make my conflict-resources to low for fun.

I say this because I believe the game is more about the PCs growth than NPC balance, and you provide powerful context for PC growth with strong scenes, for witch the GM tokens are a prime resource. Does that make sense?


Hope it helped,

Diogo Curado
Logged

GB Steve
Member

Posts: 429


WWW
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2007, 02:25:13 PM »

Hi, I've played a fair bit of MC, we've got a game going on at the moment about neanderthals and cromagnons that's mighty fine, and GMless too. By which I mean to say that we've played with the rules a bit and it seems to work. So I'll tell you what I think but don't take my answers as cannon, more as the approach we use.

1.  We play the aptitudes as pretty broad. A common aptitude is the kind of job people do which is taken to cover all its aspects. So if Priest always involves praying then don't separate them. On the other hand, as you say, if Priest represents hierarchy/social clout then having them apart seems fair enough. Especially if you want to have high ranking priests who aren't terribly devout. I'd actually see Prayer as representing faith rather than Priest.

2. A magical aptitude gets you a free magical fact in effect. We have made some players change aptitudes to facts because it was easier to represent them that way. On the other hand, if you want magical duelling or success levels to be important in magic working then levels are very appropriate. And of course, what you say, the level what effects you have access to. It can be like the level in D&D.

3. Any price can be vetoed by anyone. I'd be worried about things getting to a stage where prices are viewed as abusive. I see this game as being about consensus creation and I've found that repecting others input is essential. But I'm not sure what you mean by a compound price.

4. I think you could raise NPC levels if you wanted. We tend to start out with the main enemies being Ancient level so the players have much catching up to do anyway. I've no strong feelings about this, possibly because even in games that have lasted four or five sessions we've not really had players get massively powerful. I did worry the players in my Twisted 50's game with an NPC asylum doctor who had the magical fact that his syringe never missed, but then they realised that making him scary was a good thing.
Logged
Brennan Taylor
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 499


WWW
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2007, 03:52:34 PM »

Sorry I missed these questions, daedalvs!

Quote
1. Are magical aptitudes stated correctly (referring to the PC's in the "Malleus Mallficarum" thread)? I mean, should the Prayer be covered by Priest or Bishop? I think it's not the case, taking Savonarola as an example: his Bishop level 3 accounts for his hierarchy and/or Faith, but his Prayer aptitude should be lower...

This is up to the group, but generally an aptitude like Priest could very well be magical. If it is specified as magical at the outset, you are probably OK.

Quote
2. The level in the magical aptitudes should be important? How can this be supported by the rules? That is, could anyone state some examples for this? One thing I have  in my mind deals with a Price for a magical fact that forces a minimum level in the aptitude in order to function, but what about using the aptitude in conflicts?

I allow mundane uses of magical aptitudes (for example, Sorcerer could be used for knowledge of magical facts, as well as the casting of spells). A price that sets a minimum level in the aptitude is definitely allowed, so long as the group agrees.

Quote
3. Are "compound" prices legal or can be veto-ed by the players or the GM as abussive?

Can you clarify what you mean by a compound price?

Quote
4. As players advance in the game, they can use their Power tokens to raise PCs' Aptitudes. Can the GM use his/hers to advance the NPCs' to keep up some balance? I'm not meaning to spend the spare tokens I still have at the end of the session just for pumping up mi NPCs. Should I better use them in conflicts as Action tokens instead?

I wouldn't worry about it, but if the challenges start to get to easy, bump up the NPCs abilities a bit to keep things interesting.
Logged

daedalvs
Member

Posts: 7


« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2007, 01:05:44 AM »

Thanks a lot to all of you Smiley Your insights have been very valuable and inspiring.

Regarding the "compound" price, I'm referring to prices with chain some statements that I thought about as "lesser prices". I mean things like:
- Prayer can make you fly, BUT... you must spend a Magic Token AND an Action Token.
- Catharist can stop the advancement of the Plague in a region, BUT... it's not healed (they are "plague carriers") AND the healer gets a -2 to all Force and Grace Actions in quite some time.

That is, prices that contain two "subprices". This question arose when one of my players suggested that all Magic Facts could implicitly need the spending of a magic token. I am pretty sure that the spirit of the game when putting prices is precisely to avoid that empty mechanical maneuvers and keep the magic in a much more personal terrain, so I kindly vetoed his suggestion, but it just made a good question for the forum Smiley

As I see it, just making it neccessary to spend a Magic Token to activate a fact spoils half the creativity out of the game session, and makes magic just a counting matter. When you have a fact with a challenging Price, the mere decission whether to use it or not makes it worth your PC. In the other hand, adding the "Spend a Magic Token" price to any other stablished fact, seems to me an artificial limitation of player magical capabilities. IMHO, this should be addressed better, in the Magic Level stage of the Theme Document.

What do you people think about this?

As a war story regarding challenging Prices, in the "end" of the first Mortal Coil campaign I ran, I had the beloved NPC of one female player killed and his spirit enslaved. She stated that "Magical Music is capable of freeing an enslaved spirit", so I stated for the Price that "then you occupy his place as an enslaved spirit". She complained about it, but all the rest of the players agreed that the magnitude of the fact was well equipoised with the magnitude of the sacrifice to be done. After some thought, she freed her beloved. Everyone was clapping and waving hands then Cheesy

Sorry for the lengths of my posts, and thank you in advance for the replies. I'm now trying to make a one-shot game based in the Matrix setting for a little Con we plan to do in our city in the future, so I'll be back for more good advice after some playtesting Wink

Cheers,
Jokin
Logged
GB Steve
Member

Posts: 429


WWW
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2007, 01:22:03 AM »

I don't see those as subprices, just the price. It can be as steep as you want as long as it's in keeping with the tone of the game. We had a similar spirit freeing episode in our Twisted 50s noir game in which a PC who freed a spirit became possessed as a result.

As regards spending tokens, you only need to spend a token once in a session for that fact to be activated for the whole session. I don't see that as a negative thing. It means that characters are constrained by the chosen level of magic. But of course, in your theme document, you can specify that magic is always active after the sacrifice.

Most of our magical facts, the ones that create spell-like effects, tend to be for general use. Anyone who knows about magic can use them as long as they pay the price. Is this the same for you or are your facts very tightly defined for only one character?
Logged
Brennan Taylor
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 499


WWW
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2007, 02:52:53 AM »

Jokin,

It sounds like you came to a resolution on the "compound" price on your own. There is nothing in the rules that prevents anyone from creating this kind of price, though. It all depends on the tone of your campaign and how hard your group wants magic to be. If everyone agrees, then these prices are fine. You obviously felt it would be too difficult, which is great, too.

Awesome war story, by the way. That's what I like to hear!
Logged

daedalvs
Member

Posts: 7


« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2007, 05:12:02 AM »

We had a similar spirit freeing episode in our Twisted 50s noir game in which a PC who freed a spirit became possessed as a result.

I really enjoyed your AP posts back then when I read them Smiley

As regards spending tokens, you only need to spend a token once in a session for that fact to be activated for the whole session. I don't see that as a negative thing. It means that characters are constrained by the chosen level of magic. But of course, in your theme document, you can specify that magic is always active after the sacrifice.

Most of our magical facts, the ones that create spell-like effects, tend to be for general use. Anyone who knows about magic can use them as long as they pay the price. Is this the same for you or are your facts very tightly defined for only one character?

The Magical Facts established in both the games I've run have been divided in two factions, namely "Good" (PCs and related NPCs) and "Evil" (antagonist NPCs), but are quite general although restrained to use of each one of the sides. We usually have two or three Magical Aptitudes to cope with this.

Nevertheless, I've distilled one fact from your answers: I'm annoying myself with problems that are not such. Conclussion: gather some good advice and make as the players see fit for that particular game. Make them rule themselves, and use (but not abuse) the system. And have fun Smiley

So thank you all again for that good advice, I'll keep it in my mind for the next game I'm running. Seems like Mortal Coil is gathering some good fame in my roleplaying association Cheesy Cheers,

Jokin
Logged
Pages: [1]
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!