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  1. - Top - End - #181
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Additional music stuff:

    Seers:
    Money (for the love of money)
    Money
    Audience with the Devil - why did I never consider this for the Throne before?
    Handlebars

    Pentacle:
    The Quiet Place - very Mastigos
    99 Red Balloons - An act of meaningless Pentacle optimism spooks the Seers beyond all reason.
    Wormhole Wizards
    Zebra
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-11-03 at 07:31 AM.
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Slow Cheetah is perfect.
    Yay!

    Hydra Pulse I'm a little curious about. There's no bigger notacleverpony fan than me, but I always thought that was one of her weakest tracks. I'm not seeing the connection to the game, and I think this version of the hydra theme is far superior.
    I was going for something to represent Hong Kong there. Hydra pulse is one of her weakest tracks, but it has a sort of menacing dullness to it that felt right to me. The one you linked, by comparison, is too active for what I was going for. It feels like ponies are running and stuff is happening, and that's what I don't want.

    Calling is complicated to me; it appeals to the part of me that loves bad Japanese music, and I like the Wake Up refrain; always works for Mage stuff. I really don't like the "Calling" chorus though, that's grating.
    I agree with this. Interestingly, the YouTube version chorus is a changed melody from the original game, which I have and which is better. I'm apparently one of the few owners of it though, as all the iTunes and YouTube versions were changed and the original is basically a relic. Also, it's kinda the most hilarious cell phone ring tone ever.

    There are several other TWEWY tracks that I considered as well, and could add if you're interested. Like this, this, or this

    Scratch is okay. I think a better high class electronic mix is this, a better glassy eyed club trance song is this, and a better Scratch song is this.
    Oh yeah, the second and third ones are both more what I'm looking for there. I'll switch those into the OP. Thanks.

    I'm really not sure how I feel about classical as a thing for the Seers; I'm indoctrinated by the industrial feel that Nine Inch Nails gives to Mammon, Paternoster, Praetorian, and Panoptic respectively. The classical symphony doesn't give any hint of that abasement that characterises the Throne to me. The Throne is about the lowest, most contemptible impulses in the human soul. They're not about tragedy. They're not about grand passions. They're just kind of crap. Mediocre. Maybe I just don't have an ear for classical but this just doesn't sound anything like how I think the Throne would sound.

    You want to know what I think the Throne would sound like?

    I think this.

    The most painfully mediocre talentless crap they can possibly pump into the air waves. Music that just makes you kind of worse for having heard it, and casually degrades the most important human stories through it's insufferable treatment of them. Music without higher meaning or passion, just a completely soulless cash in.
    I feel like that's the kind of stuff people who aren't part of the Throne would select to represent the Throne. The Seers might also be responsible for making a lot of it since it keeps the mortals in their places and preserves status quo.

    I imagine though, that as a Seer, there's a certain self-delusion to the position. One might be a total materialist, but with that much money and power comes a certain pretend culture. I think if you asked a Seer, they might pick a piece of good classical music, but if you actually looked into it, you'd find that they never bothered to listen to it all the way through and just had listened to some excerpts.

    I picked the Mahler 6th 2nd movement in particular because it's very tonally neutral, the kind of thing that can be played in little snippets on the radio and make you seem cultured. The full piece is in a minor key but doesn't have a particular tragic or sad feel to it (despite being from "The Tragic) but it's "off" enough that it doesn't feel upbeat or happy either. At least for me, I feel a bit on edge after listening to it, and that's what I was going for with the Throne.

    I think it's dead like the one hit wonder it is.
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Additional music stuff:

    Seers:
    Money (for the love of money)
    Money
    Audience with the Devil - why did I never consider this for the Throne before?
    Handlebars

    Pentacle:
    The Quiet Place - very Mastigos
    99 Red Balloons - An act of meaningless Pentacle optimism spooks the Seers beyond all reason.
    Wormhole Wizards
    Zebra
    Listening through these now as well. I'll add stuff to the OP as I go through them.
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    Anarion's right on the money here.
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    Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Anarion Mori?
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    You just highlandered an entire city block into a glass-filled storm by road-runnering down it in your underwear.

  3. - Top - End - #183
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Additional music stuff:

    Seers:
    Money (for the love of money)
    Money
    Audience with the Devil - why did I never consider this for the Throne before?
    Handlebars

    Pentacle:
    The Quiet Place - very Mastigos
    99 Red Balloons - An act of meaningless Pentacle optimism spooks the Seers beyond all reason.
    Wormhole Wizards
    Zebra
    For me, the NIN track for Panopticon was pitch-perfect. Terrifying, unsettling, but intriguing. Handlebars is also fantastic - I kind of imagine every Seer walking around with that playing somewhere in their head, if subconsciously.

    Interestingly, I've heard the first part of the song before, but not the end, so when I started on it, I had the hardest time figuring out why this would be a Seers song. Then I actually finished the song.

    Now for my take on Pentacle music (Heavily Free Council)
    Modern Man
    God Bless Our Dead Marines
    Teddy Roosevelt's Guns
    Ring Them Bells (Freedom Has Come and Gone)

    Thee Silver Mt. Zion Orchestra is basically FC in band form. Also I apologize all the songs are a bajillion years long.
    Last edited by the_druid_droid; 2012-11-03 at 02:28 PM.
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  4. - Top - End - #184
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    My inability to navigate YouTube is leaving me feeling rather uncultured.


    Quote Originally Posted by Winterfate View Post
    Devils! Stop binding SiuiS' pony!

  5. - Top - End - #185
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    I know I asked for this, but damn, too much music to get through. Although Thanqol, those second two Seer songs, man that is just scary how perfect those are for the Seers. I'm leaving the classical in too because I still think it's a part of them, but I'm adding a couple of your suggestions.
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    Anarion's right on the money here.
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    Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Anarion Mori?
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    You just highlandered an entire city block into a glass-filled storm by road-runnering down it in your underwear.

  6. - Top - End - #186
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Alright. This has become more of a hurdle than I expected...

    The rules for Familiars allow advancement, and were updated in Grimoire of Grimoires. Prior, if the ST allowed a familiar to gain numen, it was suggested that you find the dot cost of a similar spell, and then either multiple by three I believe. Currently, the rules are

    Familiars may be improved with Experience points (subject to the normal limitations and trait caps of rank 1 spirits, unless otherwise noted). Trait Experience Point Cost: Attribute New dots x8 (fetch) or x5 (embodied familiar; capped at 5), Skill New dots x3(embodied familiars only; capped at 5), Skill specialty 3 (embodied familiars only), Numen 25 (up to 4 Numina for fetches or 5 for embodied familiars). (Note that changes to a spirit’s Attributes may alter other characteristics, such as Health or Speed, and adjust those traits accordingly.
    Except that leaves some holes. Specifically, influence.
    - A familiar "must be a rank 1 spirit". This doesn't prevent advancement in retrospect, but I read it initially as cannot advance past rank 1.
    - a spirit's maximum influence is equal to its rank - a rank one spirit has one dot of influence. Or possibly one dot of influence in several categories, depending.
    - at least one example familiar has higher than that; a copper dove with emeral eyes, a healing spirit, with influence (healing) 3.
    - a starting familiar has two dots of influence and says (choose one). I assume this is "(influence) 2" and not "(influence A) 1, (influence B) 1".

    Increasing influence (and possibly rank) has been a goal for a spell, now. Half of my glut of merits is because I apparently couldn't, but seeing an example of it done elsewhere is grating. Would I be able to eventually pax XP to increase these otherwise untouchable traits? Or if not, are these hard or soft limits, such that using Spirit 5 to bolster my familia is either impossible or breaks the familiar bond?


    Quote Originally Posted by Winterfate View Post
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  7. - Top - End - #187
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Anarion View Post
    I was going for something to represent Hong Kong there. Hydra pulse is one of her weakest tracks, but it has a sort of menacing dullness to it that felt right to me. The one you linked, by comparison, is too active for what I was going for. It feels like ponies are running and stuff is happening, and that's what I don't want.
    Menacing dullness... I'll have a think and get back to you.

    I agree with this. Interestingly, the YouTube version chorus is a changed melody from the original game, which I have and which is better. I'm apparently one of the few owners of it though, as all the iTunes and YouTube versions were changed and the original is basically a relic. Also, it's kinda the most hilarious cell phone ring tone ever.

    There are several other TWEWY tracks that I considered as well, and could add if you're interested. Like this, this, or this
    Will listen soon.

    I feel like that's the kind of stuff people who aren't part of the Throne would select to represent the Throne. The Seers might also be responsible for making a lot of it since it keeps the mortals in their places and preserves status quo.
    Yeah. I suppose that's better characterised as a reinforcement of the Lie than an anthem for the Throne.

    I imagine though, that as a Seer, there's a certain self-delusion to the position. One might be a total materialist, but with that much money and power comes a certain pretend culture. I think if you asked a Seer, they might pick a piece of good classical music, but if you actually looked into it, you'd find that they never bothered to listen to it all the way through and just had listened to some excerpts.
    Or they keep all the good music unreleased in the backrooms of studios and private collections. Scarcity is value.

    I picked the Mahler 6th 2nd movement in particular because it's very tonally neutral, the kind of thing that can be played in little snippets on the radio and make you seem cultured. The full piece is in a minor key but doesn't have a particular tragic or sad feel to it (despite being from "The Tragic) but it's "off" enough that it doesn't feel upbeat or happy either. At least for me, I feel a bit on edge after listening to it, and that's what I was going for with the Throne.
    Hmm, I don't see it myself, but if that's what you're going for.

    Quote Originally Posted by the_druid_droid View Post
    For me, the NIN track for Panopticon was pitch-perfect. Terrifying, unsettling, but intriguing. Handlebars is also fantastic - I kind of imagine every Seer walking around with that playing somewhere in their head, if subconsciously.
    Quote Originally Posted by Anarion View Post
    I know I asked for this, but damn, too much music to get through. Although Thanqol, those second two Seer songs, man that is just scary how perfect those are for the Seers. I'm leaving the classical in too because I still think it's a part of them, but I'm adding a couple of your suggestions.
    Yeah, the first time I heard Handlebars without listening to it I thought it was just kind of crap. When I listened to it properly, halfway through the song I just got chills.
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

  8. - Top - End - #188
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    FAMILIAR

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    Night's-Neon-Rhythm
    Neon trance dragon spirit

    ATTRIBUTES
    Power: 2
    Finesse: 3
    Resistance: 3

    TRAITS
    Willpower: 5/6
    Essence: 10/10
    [b]Initiative[/b:] 6
    Defense: 3
    Speed: 15
    Size: 5
    Corpus: 8
    Influence Cultural Expression 2

    FAMILIAR
    Night's-Neon-Rhythm is a Mage's familiar, and as such can exist in Twilight indefinitely without concern for essence bleed.

    NNR and it's Mage have an empathic connection. It's Mage can see, hear and touch NNR and vice versa despite being in Twilight. NNR's Mage is considered to have an intimate sympathetic connection to it, and can use NNR's senses for scrying rather than a scrying window. NNR and it's Mage can swap mana for essence (see essence rules below).

    BAN
    Night's-Neon-Rhythm cannot harm a dancer or musician while they are in the respective act.
    NNR must pay for performances with Essence when specifically called on to watch, I'd the performance is sufficient. Night's-Neon-Rhythm must perform if called on to do so and offered suitable payment. (power ban)

    NUMINA
    Power Ban, Blast, Emotional Aura (R)

    Manifestation - as a Twilight spirit, Night's-Neon-Rhythm can manifest in the physical realm with a successful Power+Finesse roll, modified by the local Gauntlet strength. Failure on this roll drains one point of Willpower, and NNR must have at least one point of Willpower remaining to make the attempt. NNR*can manifest invisibly if it chooses.

    Blast - Night's-Neon-Rhythm can unleash a roar, spewing fine shattered glass, burning neon gasses and the overloud thumping of electronic dance music up to thirty yards. This deals lethal damage with a dice pool of Power+Finesse, and can be increased by two dice for every point of essence spent.

    Emotional Aura (Revelry) - Night's-Neon-Rhythm can emanate an aura of Revelry in a five yard radius by spending a point of essence. For the remainder of the scene, anyone who comes within the area must roll Resolve+Composure+Power Stat or suffer -2 to all dice pools due to distraction. Due to the particular nature of*Night's-Neon-Rhythm itself, these penalties do not apply to dancing, singing, or performing appropriate music.

    Revelry is not always positive. Getting into the mood at a funeral would involve keening and empassioned eulogies. Revelry at a protest would involve catchy chants, rhythmic stomping and a building energy.

    Influence - Night's-Neon-Rhythm can expend essence to influence the world around it. When influencing emotions or thoughts, the roll is contested; the target uses the higher of its resolve or composure, and it's Power Stat if any.

    Use of influence requires a roll of Power+Finesse. NNR can strengthen and enhance its sphere of influence for ten minutes per success by expending one essence, or it can manipulate and make minor changes to its sphere of influence for one minute per success by expending two essence.

    Essence Rules - Night's-Neon-Rhythm, as a spirit, holds essence. His maximum capacity is 10, and there is no general limit on the amount of essence which can be spent in a turn1.

    NNR can spend a point of essence to use its influence in the mortal (an possibly spirit) world.

    NNR can spend its essence to increase its attributes on a one-for-one basis for one scene. Each attribute has a maximum limit of three bonus points (His rank +2). Only one point of essence can be spent in this way per round.

    NNR must use one point of essence to remain "alive" each day at sunrise. This is a relic of ryōng being celestial spirits more closely related to the sun choir. Most spirits pay this fee at moonrise.

    NNR recovers one point of essence per day from proximity to that which it reflects. Additionally, once per day NNR may attempt to pull essence from an appropriate source of resonance with a Power+Finesse roll. This is modified (negatively) by the Gauntlet or (positively) by a locus.

    NNR may steal essence from other spirits with a contested roll of Power+Finesse v. finesse+Resistance. Whoever wins the contest drains essence from the loser equal to the number of successes on the roll.

    As a familiar, NNR and Flouresce may trade mana and essence freely on a point for point basis. NNR has no limit on the amount of mana he can give, but Flouresce is most likely still limited by his gnosis and mana-per-turn expenditure cap.






    1: This may not be true, but seems supported by the general rules. A sweep of all three relevant books will be conducted soon to verify the veracity of this rule.


    Night's-Neon-Rhythm began it existence as an abstract, cultural spirit, a dragon. One of many, one of the facets of the greater Korean understanding of ryōng, and fed new off superstition than belief. It was a symbol of a nation, but one that was battling for the hearts and minds of its adherents. Over almost a century, it rose to prominence and then was struck a series of blows, most of them from Americans. It finally latched on to survival by debasement, spreading its cultural heritage and sense of patriotism through tourism. You've seen NNR before; the dragon printed on the back of bomber jackets, bought by the bushel by America tourists and servicemen, taken home for their ladies. It was a meager existence but it worked, though NNR spent its time worried about weakening, fighting off other icons, other dragons, river spirits scarves to a trickle, cloud spirits work down to dust, and regal spirits looking for revitalization.

    Weaken a spirit enough and it loses tank. Where once it was one of the powers driving the conflict that woul become the vietnam war, now it was simply that dragon on jackets, a postcard, fading. Fighting a pack of Kyocera musical toy dogs, and a faded, threadbare version of itself - a bootleg spirit with aspirations - what would become Night's-Neon-Rhythm fled into an ally where several children were having a dance off. Their boom box was an honest to god Sony, thankfully, and in desperation the ryōng reached for their essence. Dancing like this was a kind of culture, wasn't it?

    It was new, and weak, but it was better than nothing. NNR urged the dance to frenetic levels, stoking the physical high of the adolescents, and in their aura fought down his rivals. Seeking newer, similar power, it found pockets of dances, music, contests. Clubs. DJs. Dance-offs. More and more the essence changed it, it's influence. Now a spirit not of culture but of expression, Night's-Neon-Rhythm found itsel in that same alley, with that same boy. Only now, his dance-off held a sharper edge, as the human bobbed and twisted to avoid some fists, a bat, a knife. Again, The ryōng used its power to bolster the boy, making him faster, crisper, more coordinated. Eventually the boy won, or at least didn't die. An on a whim a week later, returned with spraycans to leave an imperial Korean dragon haphazardly scrawled on the wall.

    These emblems popped up all over town, and the spirit fed on them, onconography to its greatness. And eventually, the boy returned, Nd saw with eyes few humans had, spoke the tongue no human could naturally speak. His voice was the voice of the dragon, encoded in the beat-box hiss and thump and electric sounds of his age. And the dragon spirit's voice, too, was the musical accompanyment worked into a roar.

    They left the alley way together under a familiar bond.
    Last edited by SiuiS; 2012-11-04 at 10:02 PM.


    Quote Originally Posted by Winterfate View Post
    Devils! Stop binding SiuiS' pony!

  9. - Top - End - #189
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Last word on music for now, here's my idea for a track that has a kind of industrial, 'menacing dullness' like you said.


    Also, finished watching Death Note. Day-amn. Not quite my favourite anime ever but not for lack of trying. Great inspiration for a lot of Mage stuff too.
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

  10. - Top - End - #190
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Also, finished watching Death Note. Day-amn. Not quite my favourite anime ever but not for lack of trying. Great inspiration for a lot of Mage stuff too.
    I really need to get around to seeing this one. That and Fate/Zero too... Hrm.

    Also, I'm thinking about swapping Mara's 4th dot in Intelligence with Wits, as further reflection indicates she's more about the sort of things the finesse stat represents - thinking and acting in the moment, more dynamically than planning, per se.
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  11. - Top - End - #191
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    I just found the greatest quote for Mammon. Isn't it great how good reality is at making it seem like the Seers actually exist?
    The basis on which good repute in any highly organized industrial community ultimately rests is pecuniary strength; and the means of showing pecuniary strength, and so of gaining or retaining a good name, are leisure and a conspicuous consumption of goods.

    Thorstein Veblen
    Druid, if you're thinking about moving around the int dot, here's my thought for you. One of the big differences I see between int and wits has to do with how rushed you are. I don't know that my interpretation is supported by the rules as much as it is by how I see the meaning of the words intelligence and wits. But in general, if you're planning in advance or asking for studied information, I'm probably going to ask for an int check. If you're making decisions on the spot or taking account of your surroundings, you'll want wits.

    Thoughts on Death Note
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    First off, I'm unusual in being a fan of Near. Everyone I ever talk to thinks that Near and Mello are boring and way less cool than Light and L. But I really like Near because he pushes the envelope of utter genius who is dysfunctional in all aspects of life except his genius. I found the moment when Near said that he didn't know how to take a plane by himself really intriguing, and I think there's a really interesting character there, even though he got less development than Light or L due to his late introduction.

    Second, I think Death Note provides a really good reason to adopt the reversal points system for RPG characters with superhuman stats. One of my frustrations with the anime is that they got very close to really depicting a battle between geniuses, but then there are several small things that I find incredibly stupid. Light's very first mistake in particular is a huge problem for me. That's the one where he kills the guy on public television and reveals that he's in Japan. He already had the thought that he should be careful, so why kill that guy? Why even respond to a challenge like that? It's stupid and it bugs me. It's also weird later on that Light didn't give clearer instructions to his proxy Kira guy (that he gave the death note to), who's name escapes me. That guy ruined the whole scheme by anticipating Light's plans, and if Light had simply been more clear that he was planning everything and the guy needed to follow orders exactly and do nothing else to reveal himself, Light would have probably won.

    I also think getting into the police investigation at all was stupid, and that Light's brain wipe plan that ended up killing L had way too many variables and was not a genius plan, but rather a lucky guess.


    Having said all that, I think Death Note is a great anime. It's an interesting example of how Mage combat could look, since knowing someone's name is death and everything is conducted via the shadows and the media. It also shows the reach of a truly dedicated investigation and a lot of ways to influence people, although I find Light's ultimate plan to always be ambiguous, since his paranoia would ever prevent him from finally succeeding.
    Soul Tracer avatar by Thanqol.

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    Anarion's right on the money here.
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    Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Anarion Mori?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tiki Snakes View Post
    You just highlandered an entire city block into a glass-filled storm by road-runnering down it in your underwear.

  12. - Top - End - #192
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Fine, I'll actually give deathnote a look. Geeze.



    Quote Originally Posted by Winterfate View Post
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  13. - Top - End - #193
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anarion View Post
    I just found the greatest quote for Mammon. Isn't it great how good reality is at making it seem like the Seers actually exist?
    I have been thinking this for the past week. It's unnerving.

    Druid, if you're thinking about moving around the int dot, here's my thought for you. One of the big differences I see between int and wits has to do with how rushed you are. I don't know that my interpretation is supported by the rules as much as it is by how I see the meaning of the words intelligence and wits. But in general, if you're planning in advance or asking for studied information, I'm probably going to ask for an int check. If you're making decisions on the spot or taking account of your surroundings, you'll want wits.
    I think that approach makes sense, and I that's part of why I'm considering it. I'm not sure I'm completely sold, but Mara does like to handle things as they happen, rather than making really elaborate plans beforehand.

    At the same time, I don't know if this is true in all arenas, or just the social one where she has such ability to cruise on her Mind magic.
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  14. - Top - End - #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_druid_droid View Post
    I think that approach makes sense, and I that's part of why I'm considering it. I'm not sure I'm completely sold, but Mara does like to handle things as they happen, rather than making really elaborate plans beforehand.

    At the same time, I don't know if this is true in all arenas, or just the social one where she has such ability to cruise on her Mind magic.
    When in doubt, pick the stat that applies to more rotes.
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    Anarion's right on the money here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anarion View Post
    I just found the greatest quote for Mammon. Isn't it great how good reality is at making it seem like the Seers actually exist?
    I read an interesting article about how Mage is actually not about hubris, but about privilege.

    I.e. that once you gain the power to change the world, rather than actually changing it you instantly form secret societies with secret handshakes and start fighting other secret societies all the time.

    Druid, if you're thinking about moving around the int dot, here's my thought for you. One of the big differences I see between int and wits has to do with how rushed you are. I don't know that my interpretation is supported by the rules as much as it is by how I see the meaning of the words intelligence and wits. But in general, if you're planning in advance or asking for studied information, I'm probably going to ask for an int check. If you're making decisions on the spot or taking account of your surroundings, you'll want wits.
    I've been exploring this with Stephanie. She's actually really smart - just in a really dumb way.

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    First off, I'm unusual in being a fan of Near. Everyone I ever talk to thinks that Near and Mello are boring and way less cool than Light and L. But I really like Near because he pushes the envelope of utter genius who is dysfunctional in all aspects of life except his genius. I found the moment when Near said that he didn't know how to take a plane by himself really intriguing, and I think there's a really interesting character there, even though he got less development than Light or L due to his late introduction.

    Second, I think Death Note provides a really good reason to adopt the reversal points system for RPG characters with superhuman stats. One of my frustrations with the anime is that they got very close to really depicting a battle between geniuses, but then there are several small things that I find incredibly stupid. Light's very first mistake in particular is a huge problem for me. That's the one where he kills the guy on public television and reveals that he's in Japan. He already had the thought that he should be careful, so why kill that guy? Why even respond to a challenge like that? It's stupid and it bugs me. It's also weird later on that Light didn't give clearer instructions to his proxy Kira guy (that he gave the death note to), who's name escapes me. That guy ruined the whole scheme by anticipating Light's plans, and if Light had simply been more clear that he was planning everything and the guy needed to follow orders exactly and do nothing else to reveal himself, Light would have probably won.

    I also think getting into the police investigation at all was stupid, and that Light's brain wipe plan that ended up killing L had way too many variables and was not a genius plan, but rather a lucky guess.


    Having said all that, I think Death Note is a great anime. It's an interesting example of how Mage combat could look, since knowing someone's name is death and everything is conducted via the shadows and the media. It also shows the reach of a truly dedicated investigation and a lot of ways to influence people, although I find Light's ultimate plan to always be ambiguous, since his paranoia would ever prevent him from finally succeeding.
    Death Note:

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    but then there are several small things that I find incredibly stupid. Light's very first mistake in particular is a huge problem for me. That's the one where he kills the guy on public television and reveals that he's in Japan. He already had the thought that he should be careful, so why kill that guy? Why even respond to a challenge like that? It's stupid and it bugs me.
    I thought about all this stuff and decided that there's no actual other way the story could have gone. Light's defining characteristic is hubris. Hubris is what made his literal first response to gaining the death note I SHALL BECOME GOD. Hubris is what drives all his actions. Remember, he wants to not be caught but he wants even more to be seen as a God. Therefore he couldn't take that crap on national TV. He made an impulsive, proud act to affirm Kira's divinity. Every step L gets towards him uses that hubris.

    If I got the Death Note it would be impossible to catch me because I'd be completely arbitrary in my killings. My plan involves getting as many dictators and writing "I will go on national TV, confess all my crimes, and then kill myself". I'd focus on enacting political change and destroying corruption than slaughtering petty criminals. This would mean I'd only kill every few months after I'd had time to do the research and there'd be no direct link between me and my victims.

    That would be a totally boring story though.

    It's also weird later on that Light didn't give clearer instructions to his proxy Kira guy (that he gave the death note to), who's name escapes me. That guy ruined the whole scheme by anticipating Light's plans, and if Light had simply been more clear that he was planning everything and the guy needed to follow orders exactly and do nothing else to reveal himself, Light would have probably won.
    That was the entire point! He didn't choose a guy who obeyed orders, he chose a guy who thought like him. And he did give him a direct order not to do anything. X-Kira was exactly what Light chose him to be and his failure was absolutely inevitable.

    I did feel far more ambivalent about Nier trying to turn that into a friendship speech though.

    I also think getting into the police investigation at all was stupid, and that Light's brain wipe plan that ended up killing L had way too many variables and was not a genius plan, but rather a lucky guess.
    I think getting into the police investigation was an inescapable trap. How could Light Yagami, son of the investigation's head detective, possibly turn it down? He was stuck there.

    However killing the FBI tail was a short sighted blunder, and everything kind of snowballed from there. He underestimated his opposition - he underestimated L a lot. Hubris.
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I read an interesting article about how Mage is actually not about hubris, but about privilege.

    I.e. that once you gain the power to change the world, rather than actually changing it you instantly form secret societies with secret handshakes and start fighting other secret societies all the time.
    You're going to hav to lead me friend. I'm afraid I'm working with a loaded version of privilege, makes it hardyk understand this.

    -

    On wits, I'm mostly with Anarion. I also feel that Wits is the most Sloth-like of the two, because it's waiting and applying mid-go, where Inteligence would be coming up with relevant facts, and then a decision based off them.

    Mm. That doesn't make as much sense as I'd hoped. Have you ever raced your own synapses? Where the act of writing slowly drove a thought out of your head, overwrote it with the impulses of finding the rift keys, the right words, grammar and structure? I have. Dang jt.

    Wits is a Doctor Who stat. Not to say he's not intelligent, but the off the cuff leveraging and Gerry rigging of things, definitely wits. Intelligence comes up too, but those are the times he remembers some pivotal fact, calls himself stupid r thick, and then follows the obvious path that's only obvious if you know that fact. Polymers ing the hydrocarbons requires Int to realize it coul be pulled off. Solving a problem by superglue feels like wits though. Power and finesse, do you have RAM to spare, or do you make good use of a small body of knowledge?

    I've been exploring this with Stephanie. She's actually really smart - just in a really dumb way.
    Perhaps the smartest thing one can do is step back and let others patch up your blind spots.


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    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    Mm. That doesn't make as much sense as I'd hoped. Have you ever raced your own synapses? Where the act of writing slowly drove a thought out of your head, overwrote it with the impulses of finding the rift keys, the right words, grammar and structure? I have. Dang jt.
    Yeah, I've been there. Damndest thing.

    Wits is a Doctor Who stat. Not to say he's not intelligent, but the off the cuff leveraging and Gerry rigging of things, definitely wits. Intelligence comes up too, but those are the times he remembers some pivotal fact, calls himself stupid r thick, and then follows the obvious path that's only obvious if you know that fact. Polymers ing the hydrocarbons requires Int to realize it coul be pulled off. Solving a problem by superglue feels like wits though. Power and finesse, do you have RAM to spare, or do you make good use of a small body of knowledge?
    Yeah, I'm at the point where I'm just trying to let it roll around in my head. May try to interrogate Mara more directly with character-thoughts and see how she turns out to resolve it once and for all. Also, I still need to come up with some ideas for the thread you linked. Gonna hop on that soon.
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    The Musketeers

    Free Council Cabal #1

    The Musketeers are a recently formed cabal, some combination of locals and foreigners that formed up upon the arrival of new mages two months ago because their personalities just matched up perfectly. They espouse the ethos of "all for one and one for all" and depending on who you ask, they're either gallant or insanely reckless. They have staged several public displays of magic, usually pretending to be some kind of act or play to inspire sleepers without risking a paradox. Despite it's frequent public appearances, the cabal's advantage thus far is it's mastery of disguise. When they move actively, they do so with their faces hidden, and nobody knows what they actually look like.

    They have not been seen by anyone since the attack on the train.

    The Man in Black Male Free Council Thyrsus

    The leader of the cabal, this man is a swashbuckler extraordinaire. Any public incident of him performing magic has involved him dressed all in black, with a black cape and bandana and this is also how he appears when contacting Pentacle members from other cabals. At various meetings he has sported European and South American accents, and skin varying in shade between milky white and a deep tan. He is quick to laugh, and even quicker with a sharp retort.

    Quixote Male? Free Council Thyrsus

    Quixote makes the Man in Black look positively tame. Like his compatriot, he tends to appear publicly in costume, but his usually consists of brightly colored stripes or polka dots, a rather distinctive spear, and at least one or two pieces of metal armor and a pointed helm. How in the world he disguises all of this is not known, but it is reported that his face has never been the same twice. Unlike The Man in Black, Quixote has been reported as appearing of all races, and sometimes as either sex.

    Although both Quixote and the Man in Black alter their physical appearance frequently, it's generally true that Quixote appears both taller and heavier than his compatriot, and quite often a fair bit fatter as well. This does not seem to affect his physical dexterity.

    Juniper Female Mysterium Mastigos

    Juniper is the quiet one. She eschews the capes and bright colors of the others, but has also assiduously avoided revealing her face through use of long coats and headscarves or masks of various sorts. Her favorite color is deep burgundy, and her standard disguise is a deep burgundy coat with a hood that enshrouds her face in shadow. Her masks at various public locations have included several Japanese Oni masks as well as those used by various Pacific Islanders, although nobody is sure where she keeps her collection. She has never been heard to speak in the presence of non-cabal members and her role in the cabal is not well-known.

    She's small and slight of build, barely topping 5 feet tall and likely weighing less than 100 lbs.

    Dartanion ?? ?? ??

    There are rumors that the musketeers have a fourth member. However, he or she has not been seen in public.
    Last edited by Anarion; 2012-12-04 at 03:55 PM.
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    Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Anarion Mori?
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    You just highlandered an entire city block into a glass-filled storm by road-runnering down it in your underwear.

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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Vulcan's Opinions On:

    The Boxers

    "Their philosophy was obsolete the last time they all got massacred."

    Vulcan is not at all impressed by spiritualism. The most powerful force in the world is human desire. Through the lens of capitalism, watch as desire obliterates rainforests, bulldozes shrines, paves over relics, destroys traditions. Denying your own desire rids yourself of your most powerful force, your most human element, and turns you into some kind of monster or machine. To a degree, she thinks that espousing any philosophy different from self-interested nihilistic materialism is contributing directly to the greater suffering of humanity.

    She would rather not deal with them at all. Not only do they not understand, they have deliberately removed themselves so far from understanding that they have become unpredictable. It would be wrong to say that she's afraid of them - more irritated that they don't set themselves up to be easily controlled.

    The Musketeers

    "Did you know there was a movie called Barbie and the Three Musketeers? It made the Throne ten million dollars. If you keep it up we might be able to get a sequel."

    Small minded dolts, ignorant of real power, and amongst the most foolish of the Pentacle - but thing is, Vulcan respects that. They're stupid in a way she understands, and are smart in a way she appreciates. They're clearly playing at being heroes, and they should - if they're Awakened it's their own right to do whatever they want with magic. And if what they choose to do is swing around in masks and capes, kill innocent civilians and turn the Pentacle against itself then they couldn't help the Throne more than if they were card carrying Seers.

    They're children playing at heroics, and that's okay. They exist entirely within the acceptable rebel category; they don't even challenge the systems that are designed to control people like them. If the entire Pentacle was as foolish then Vulcan would feel a lot safer.
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-11-07 at 05:21 AM.
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Vulcan is not at all impressed by spiritualism. The most powerful force in the world is human desire.
    The irony in this is palpable XD


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    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    The irony in this is palpable XD
    She thinks that following the step of "mastering your desires" is the process of brainwashing yourself into wanting something incomprehensible rather than wanting what you actually want. She thinks doing that makes you worse at being a person.
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    She thinks that following the step of "mastering your desires" is the process of brainwashing yourself into wanting something incomprehensible rather than wanting what you actually want. She thinks doing that makes you worse at being a person.
    We agree. What makes Flouresce smile, turn away an put on his mask to go paint and chuckle is that her abjuration of the spiritual misses some obvious stuff. She still believes in morality because it's right there – you look at a soul and you know it's health. Morality is exercise and diet of the soul. Ergo morality exists, has a purpose.

    But so does spirituality. Flouresce could walk into a corporate office with a buffed up charity spirit, awaken the corporation, destroy it, and leave charity as it's guardian. Barring outside intervention that business will change dramatically in the next six months. Having faith in a principle creates that principle as a force, which can reward you for adhering to it.


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    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    We agree. What makes Flouresce smile, turn away an put on his mask to go paint and chuckle is that her abjuration of the spiritual misses some obvious stuff. She still believes in morality because it's right there – you look at a soul and you know it's health. Morality is exercise and diet of the soul. Ergo morality exists, has a purpose.
    Horrible misinterpretation there: Vulcan doesn't believe in doing good things. She understands that doing bad things harms your soul. If you do a good thing it's because you wanted to do it.

    But so does spirituality. Flouresce could walk into a corporate office with a buffed up charity spirit, awaken the corporation, destroy it, and leave charity as it's guardian. Barring outside intervention that business will change dramatically in the next six months. Having faith in a principle creates that principle as a force, which can reward you for adhering to it.
    "Yes, that's nice, you can use Spirit magic to inflict your insanity on the world. I can do the same with Mind magic. The difference as I see it is that by installing a charity spirit in charge of a corporation you're essentially going to murder either the corporation or the spirit - which is a means and not an end."
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Horrible misinterpretation there: Vulcan doesn't believe in doing good things. She understands that doing bad things harms your soul. If you do a good thing it's because you wanted to do it.
    Ahead of the curve. 99% of basic morality is not being a dink.

    "Yes, that's nice, you can use Spirit magic to inflict your insanity on the world. I can do the same with Mind magic. The difference as I see it is that by installing a charity spirit in charge of a corporation you're essentially going to murder either the corporation or the spirit - which is a means and not an end."
    1) spirits aren't quite people. Murder doesn't apply.
    2) I don't need to do anything. This stuff happens on its own. Spirituality is a force. Jude because you don't see it does not make it untrue.


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    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    1) spirits aren't quite people. Murder doesn't apply.
    Maybe? I'm not sure that you can just go around willy-nilly murdering spirits with no personal consequences for that. It messes a lot of stuff up.

    2) I don't need to do anything. This stuff happens on its own. Spirituality is a force. Jude because you don't see it does not make it untrue.
    Sure, but it's a force just like any other magic. You can use spirit magic to mess with a corporation. Vulcan can use mind magic to mess with a corporation. Sometimes spirits do things on their own that mess stuff up. Sometimes people make stupid mental errors on their own that mess stuff up. Same thing.
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    Dulce Et Decorum Est Pro Anarion Mori?
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    You just highlandered an entire city block into a glass-filled storm by road-runnering down it in your underwear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anarion View Post
    Maybe? I'm not sure that you can just go around willy-nilly murdering spirits with no personal consequences for that. It messes a lot of stuff up.
    Yes. Elaboration beyond minimum required Is out of character though.


    Sure, but it's a force just like any other magic. You can use spirit magic to mess with a corporation. Vulcan can use mind magic to mess with a corporation. Sometimes spirits do things on their own that mess stuff up. Sometimes people make stupid mental errors on their own that mess stuff up. Same thing.
    Red herring.

    Statements: spirituality is bunk.
    Capitalism wins.

    Rebuttal: spirituality is concrete as cash.
    Capitalism can literally be taken behind shed and beaten.


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    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    Red herring.

    Statements: spirituality is bunk.
    Capitalism wins.

    Rebuttal: spirituality is concrete as cash.
    Capitalism can literally be taken behind shed and beaten.
    Nonsense. Spiritualism does not equal dealing with spirits. Spirits, in their natural state, reflect what human beings do. The majority of human beings are greedy and selfish; ergo the majority of spirits are greedy and selfish.

    While it's true that some nutter with Spirit magic can fundamentally alter the nature of those spirits, that has no bearing on the practise of spirituality. It's possible to be a complete commercialist douchebag and a Master of the Spirit Arcana.

    It's also possible to brainwash yourself into not being greedy and selfish through meditation, self-denial and other invasive self-hypnotic techniques. Vulcan considers this an aberration and a deeply disturbing one because it's denying the fundamental forces that make you human (greed and selfishnesss).
    If you teach a man to fish, he'll still vote for the guy that gives him a fish.

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    Hmm, I think Mara's response to the discussion is firstly some confusion. To her, materialists are the people who only believe in (little-m) matter and (little-f) forces and the laws of physics governing them. Someone who has objective evidence of the existence of things like souls and ghosts (let alone Magic) calling themselves a materialist is something she doesn't quite grok.

    At the same time, she's not 100% opposed to the idea of selfishness, since everyone has to find their own way (her take on The Supernal is the Self). And her own motives in Hong Kong are admittedly self-interested. Still, she would disagree with the idea that you should cling to those desires above all else - after all, if you don't try out something you don't have a "natural" desire for you might not discover that you like it better than some of the other things you do currently want.

    Also, arguably, many desires are the result not of an individual's will, but their circumstances and prior history, which in an Awakened context is not necessarily all something that should be cleaved to. In that sense she would probably respect Vulcan more if there was evidence that she was at least exploring these things to try to arrive at a more truly individual set of motivations.

    Which now that I've said it strikes me as very Mastigos.

    Also, I would answer this in dialogue, but I don't know if I've captured her voice in my head yet. I know about her, but am not quite looking through her eyes.
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    Default Re: The Heart of the Dragon (OOC)

    Question for everyone. I'm planning to do a few Mammon profiles next, and I'd like to know how you'd like them presented. Since Vulcan is part of the organization, I could talk about its members in as much or more detail than the various Pentacle cabals. Or, I could give you reports more in the style of what we got on Cyprus, where the info is filtered through some Pentacle organization that is reporting on intel they've gathered. If you'd prefer some other format entirely, I could do that as well.
    Last edited by Anarion; 2012-11-08 at 12:50 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Nonsense. Spiritualism does not equal dealing with spirits. Spirits, in their natural state, reflect what human beings do. The majority of human beings are greedy and selfish; ergo the majority of spirits are greedy and selfish.

    While it's true that some nutter with Spirit magic can fundamentally alter the nature of those spirits, that has no bearing on the practise of spirituality. It's possible to be a complete commercialist douchebag and a Master of the Spirit Arcana.

    It's also possible to brainwash yourself into not being greedy and selfish through meditation, self-denial and other invasive self-hypnotic techniques. Vulcan considers this an aberration and a deeply disturbing one because it's denying the fundamental forces that make you human (greed and selfishnesss).
    "Waste of argument. Spirituality is not denial of greed and selfishness. Spirituality is belief in impact of spirits, like economics is belief in impact of money.

    "Selfless attitude comes from spirituality in same way selfless attitude comes from belief in the soul. You say 'don't do bad things, they hurt you, but no need to do good things'? Spirituality the same, except doing good things does have benefits. For entire city.

    "Commercialist douche can master spirit arcanum. Aboriginal can master mind arcanum. So? Remove influence and watch again. Commercial douche breeds constant stream of bad things which hunt him and control him. If he was less souche, he would breed less. If he was good, he would breed constant stream of good things that fight off bad things. People recognize this; good begets good. You may think it unfortunate that "Good" and "Evil" are words used, but they are most accurate."

    "Oh, also, you need to learn concept of middle road. Not believe in spiritual pursuits so forsake all acts which do not directly harm you? Shortsighted."

    Quote Originally Posted by the_druid_droid View Post
    Hmm, I think Mara's response to the discussion is firstly some confusion. To her, materialists are the people who only believe in (little-m) matter and (little-f) forces and the laws of physics governing them. Someone who has objective evidence of the existence of things like souls and ghosts (let alone Magic) calling themselves a materialist is something she doesn't quite grok.
    I think the issue is the use of words which have VASTLY different meanings in different contexts. One of the downsides of morality. Vulcan doesn't believe in Good, so she does nothing good because they're similar. It's like not using deodorant, you don't like it when it's hot, and eat is measured in degrees, an degree is a deodorant, therefore you don't like degree. I'm sure it's not that plain on Vulcan's end, but it seems that way at first brush.

    On the upside, though, Vulcan as a person is completely believable. No matter how much it doesn't make logical sense, it smacks of honest human motivation. I think that whether we like her as a person or not is irrelevant.

    At the same time, she's not 100% opposed to the idea of selfishness, since everyone has to find their own way (her take on The Supernal is the Self). And her own motives in Hong Kong are admittedly self-interested.
    I am having a lot of trouble getting myself into the slothful mindset. I want to dump all relevant information immediately, and it is so hard not to! But yeah, there's a middle road in there, between "some selfishness is good" and "murder-rape-pillage ALL the things! Heil Mammon!", and it's interesting to watch the process of someone who believes that middle road is made up whole clothe by humans who couldn't get anything ad enforce a culture of selflessness out of selfishness.

    Also, arguably, many desires are the result not of an individual's will, but their circumstances and prior history, which in an Awakened context is not necessarily all something that should be cleaved to.
    *nods* "Spirits."

    Also, I would answer this in dialogue, but I don't know if I've captured her voice in my head yet. I know about her, but am not quite looking through her eyes.
    What's her ethnicity? I keep seeing her as an Indian-African mix. Coupled with messing up the Moros/Mastigos bit, means I know nothin of Mara at all >_<

    Quote Originally Posted by Anarion View Post
    Question for everyone. I'm planning to do a few Mammon profiles next, and I'd like to know how you'd like them presented. Since Vulcan is part of the organization, I could talk about its members in as much or more detail than the various Pentacle cabals. Or, I could give you reports more in the style of what we got on Cyprus, where the info is filtered through some Pentacle organization that is reporting on intel they've gathered. If you'd prefer some other format entirely, I could do that as well.
    Dossier style with notes of specifics
    For Thanqol In a spoiler. While on the one hoof this isn't the kind of thing that needs to be a secret, the presentation sets the mood.


    Quote Originally Posted by Winterfate View Post
    Devils! Stop binding SiuiS' pony!

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