Geist Reconstruction


  • Reader

    Mod Voice: A topic moved from elsewhere to be its own thing, on request.

    ES


  • Admin

    @The-Tree-of-Woe said:

    Geist and Demon can fight it out for which of its meta-settings are more obnoxious because when they're included on a multi-genre game, you can't seem to ignore them.

    I dunno if I missed it in all the image spam, but did you ever explain what @Misadventure asked? How does Geist intrude on the meta-settings?

    One of the (many) things about Geist I like is that it's very easy to add onto any other spheres since it has very little metaplot of its own in terms of cosmology and world-building. Basically it says "there's an Underworld, somewhere, where dead people usually go unless they don't" and that's almost about it.

    Hell, you could probably gut the Underworld out of the game entirely and it'd still function with some patching.


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel said:

    @The-Tree-of-Woe said:

    Geist and Demon can fight it out for which of its meta-settings are more obnoxious because when they're included on a multi-genre game, you can't seem to ignore them.

    I dunno if I missed it in all the image spam, but did you ever explain what @Misadventure asked? How does Geist intrude on the meta-settings?

    One of the (many) things about Geist I like is that it's very easy to add onto any other spheres since it has very little metaplot of its own in terms of cosmology and world-building. Basically it says "there's an Underworld, somewhere, where dead people usually go unless they don't" and that's almost about it.

    Hell, you could probably gut the Underworld out of the game entirely and it'd still function with some patching.

    While accurate, this is super simplistic. I really wish people gave Geist more credit. I also wish Geist was better written and its Key/Manifestation/Mementos system weren't so fucking redundant. It looks interesting on the surface, but when you get into it, it's a mess.


  • Admin

    @Coin Care to elaborate on what you'd have changed?


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel said:

    @Coin Care to elaborate on what you'd have changed?

    Systems wise, I would change how Manifestations and Keys interact in general. But more specifically, I would have done away with ridiculous redundancies, like the ones you find all over the Rage Manifestation. You do not need thirty different ways of doing basic damage.

    I would do away with "shit loads of powers just because you bought a new Key". Instead, I would make the Key/Manifestation combinations open the door to different powers that you could now buy, and the powers would likely be a bit cheaper than they are now, because of it.

    This would also allow for much greater variety. Instead of, say, Phantasmal Caul being a set of 5 powers borne from that combination, they could be a whole host of powers that follow that theme.

    Rage would probably get the biggest overhaul in general theme; damage would certainly be a thing, of course, but again exemplifying: the Industrial Rage, as it stands, lets you damage people with technology. What? No. That should be Industrial Marionette (controlling tech to make it do bad things to people) or Industrial Caul (merging with technology to make yourself more dangerous or capable through it). Therefore, a perfect niche for Industrial Rage is raging against the machine. Use it to rip it apart. Make it turn on itself. There are a ton of things you can do: make it less useful, make it work backwards, make it explode, make it break, etc.

    In general, I find the disparity between "some combinations have detailed, dot-by-dot powers and some are just one big effect that is weird and ambiguous" to be exhaustingly annoying.

    Mementos bug me because they are given "levels" but each "level" is actually a specific type of effect, instead of an intensity of that effect. I would instead prefer a 1-5 dot level and different types of Mementos that have different intensities at different levels. So you could have Charms that aren't just 1-dot Mementos, but rather a 3-dot Charm that does more than a 1-dot Charm. Fetters are different. Vanitas are different. Deathmasks are different.

    I'd probably also fucking do away with this "no real society" bullshit. It's annoying as fuck and uncohesive, and while it probably works okay in tabletop, it makes MUs a pain in the ass. I would keep the societies philosophical in nature and with plenty of room for interpretation, and try to allow for them to be able to intersect within a Krewe, while leaving the Krewes to make their own Mythos just as much as they can in Geist 1e.

    I would give the Horsemen a more defined role and dig a little deeper into some of the weird shit in the Underworld, especially Anomalies. And I would very likely do away with some of the more "Krewe Hierarchy" aspected merits that only work if you're a Founder, etc., which just don't work out on MUs, where making a group is hard enough without having to worry that you can't have shit others can because you aren't a founding member.

    I would make the Archetypes into what Mask/Dirge and Blood/Bone are for 2e Vampire and Werewolf, which is actually what they are in 1e, just given way more importance to the point where they feel like a Y-Splat (Threshold being the X-Splat) instead of just a trait that helps define the character's personality.

    And lastly (but certainly not exhaustively) I would make it much, much less ambiguous that you don't actually know who your Geist was when they were alive. And I am well-aware this is mostly a pet-peeve of mine (and some other people) but seeing all these Geists with fleshed out "human lives" makes me roll my eyes so hard and go to my "ur dooin eet wrang" place, omg.

    There's more. But I'm at work.


  • Admin

    @Coin said:

    I'd probably also fucking do away with this "no real society" bullshit. It's annoying as fuck and uncohesive, and while it probably works okay in tabletop, it makes MUs a pain in the ass. I would keep the societies philosophical in nature and with plenty of room for interpretation, and try to allow for them to be able to intersect within a Krewe, while leaving the Krewes to make their own Mythos just as much as they can in Geist 1e.

    Frankly, this is one of the things that drew me to Geist in the first place. None of that hierarchical crap that poisons MU* communities by drawing a certain type of player to them; the lack of internal cohesion makes Sin-Eaters the nWoD chameleons; they fit literally anywhere they see fit, with no internal Masquerade, no burdening overreaching metaplot to haunt (heh!) them. Instead they are each free to do as they will and find common themes within individual Krewes if they so desire it.

    While I agree with some of your points on mechanics I much like this one as-is for the game itself.


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel said:

    Frankly, this is one of the things that drew me to Geist in the first place. None of that hierarchical crap that poisons MU* communities by drawing a certain type of player to them; the lack of internal cohesion makes Sin-Eaters the nWoD chameleons; they fit literally anywhere they see fit, with no internal Masquerade, no burdening overreaching metaplot to haunt (heh!) them. Instead they are each free to do as they will and find common themes within individual Krewes if they so desire it.

    I'm sorry, but no. There are entire passages in the book that talk about how if you're too open and you out Sin-Eater nature and stuff, other Sin-Eaters will look at you and go "fuck no" and punish you, or even put you down. Not to the extent and fanatism as other splats, but it's stillt here. So I really dislike the whole "no IC masquerade". It's bullshit. There is one, it's just not formalized, which is fine, but not the same as "it does not exist".

    And what I proposed above does nothing to change what you like, since what I propose is more a philosophical approach to sub-dividing PCs within culture, not a hierarchical set of organizations. I see it more like Werewolf 2e Tribes (but lacking a thing like Renown to make them even a little hierarchical), wherein you have a philosophy and a general sense of purpose, but don't particularly have a hierarchy within the Tribe other than "this person just has more Renown and happens to be in my Tribe, so I defer to their experience and power".

    TL;DR: none of what you raise up as concerns would be actual concerns with the way I would attempt to write what I proposed.


  • Pitcrew

    @Thenomain @Glitch @EmmahSue can a mod move the Geist bits of this convo to a new thread titled "Geist Reconstruction" or something? We're wildly off-topic now.


  • Admin

    @Coin said:

    So I really dislike the whole "no IC masquerade".

    You're going off a lot by what you dislike. What I'm trying to say is there's a non-zero chance other people like what you dislike.

    And what I proposed above does nothing to change what you like, since what I propose is more a philosophical approach to sub-dividing PCs within culture, not a hierarchical set of organizations.

    The issue there is that there's no definitive view of just what a Sin-Eater is or does within the game's themes. There's no one history (like Werewolves have, for instance) passed down for generations verifiable by objective third party sources. Geists themselves are notoriously unstable, ghosts are often damaged and terribly biased, Krewes contradict each other as much as not and generally Sin-Eaters are allowed - in a way, forced - to make do with what they have.

    Which isn't to say you can't do that, of course, any more than you can't do any sorts of things with any given game. Personally I like this aspect of how it's set up.


  • Pitcrew

    I don't know a ton about Geist, but I do know these things of use:

    One - with 2nd Edition, Ghosts work a lot more on line with Spirits and Angels and have more defined rules, this is good.
    Two - Promethean 2nd Edition explicitly involves trips to the underworld.


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel said:

    @Coin said:

    So I really dislike the whole "no IC masquerade".

    You're going off a lot by what you dislike. What I'm trying to say is there's a non-zero chance other people like what you dislike.

    No, you're you just misinterpreting. I dislike people who say "Geist as a game as no masquerade". If the game outright said, "Sin-Eaters as a whole don't give a shit and tell everyone everything and whatever whatever we do what we want", then I wouldn't dislike people claiming such, because it'd be true. But it doesn't. I would still think it's stupid (unless the entire nWoD was different), but that would be different.

    And what I proposed above does nothing to change what you like, since what I propose is more a philosophical approach to sub-dividing PCs within culture, not a hierarchical set of organizations.

    The issue there is that there's no definitive view of just what a Sin-Eater is or does within the game's themes. There's no one history (like Werewolves have, for instance) passed down for generations verifiable by objective third party sources. Geists themselves are notoriously unstable, ghosts are often damaged and terribly biased, Krewes contradict each other as much as not and generally Sin-Eaters are allowed - in a way, forced - to make do with what they have.

    Which isn't to say you can't do that, of course, any more than you can't do any sorts of things with any given game. Personally I like this aspect of how it's set up.

    I maintain that none of what you're saying you like would be in jeopardy if someone applied something like what I proposed, especially if those aspects you like are kept in mind when designing it. Compromises aren't that hard if you aren't clinging to something nebulous as set in stone (an exercise in frustration at best).


  • Pitcrew

    If you create organizations for Geist they will become hierarchical. because sadly that is what player tend to do.


  • Pitcrew

    @ThatGuyThere said:

    If you create organizations for Geist they will become hierarchical. because sadly that is what player tend to do.

    This is the worst reason not to do something when it comes to game design. The absolute worst. You design a game with characteristics that reinforce the theme you want for it. Saying "adding organizations will make them hierarchical because people suck" is not a reason not to do it.

    Also, it's bullshit, because in none of the games I've seen with Werewolf 2e, for example, have the Tribes been "hierarchical". In Eldritch, we have tribal elders, but it's a position of respect and experience, not "I am an Elder because I have Status (Blood Talons) 5". So not all players do that, and even those that do, don't do it in all games. Not to mention that if you're active and involved as staff you can put a kibosh on that shit without too much effort.


  • Pitcrew

    It night not happen I wouldn't know from werewolf 2e I have not played it anywhere. Werewolf Forsaken 1e defiantly had it in places where tribes where hierarchical. Also take traditions from old mage, most of them were rather loose confederations but in play most became rather hierarchical.
    It might be bad design, but I am a player not a designer, so to be design principles matter less to me then what i have seen a majority of time in play.
    Will all players do it, no. Will enough do it that i prefer the lack of organizations to adding some in, definitely.


  • Pitcrew

    I really don't like WoD, but the only Sphere I did find interest in was Geist. Specifically because there was no faction bullshit, and everyone Sin Eater could be a island/nation onto themselves. You take that one aspect away, I feel you rip out one of the core foundations of Geist, that there is no proto-typical Geist.

    I also feel that the system is so limited (They have pretty much the Underworld, that's it) that they very easily interact with other Spheres.


  • Pitcrew

    @FiranSurvivor said:

    I really don't like WoD, but the only Sphere I did find interest in was Geist. Specifically because there was no faction bullshit, and everyone Sin Eater could be a island/nation onto themselves. You take that one aspect away, I feel you rip out one of the core foundations of Geist, that there is no proto-typical Geist.

    I also feel that the system is so limited (They have pretty much the Underworld, that's it) that they very easily interact with other Spheres.

    Yeah, okay. Except the only game that has had a Geist sphere was such a pain in the fucking ass. Not to mention that people ended up largely ignoring the basic fundamental organization of Sin-Eaters (Krewes) because "lulz", I guess?

    Again, I don't really see what I proposed above as something that would endanger the things you say you like about the game. But since I've said it three times now, I guess that's it!


  • Pitcrew

    I guess we're talking about the Reach? I made a Geist there, but honestly have no room to talk because I was SUPER idle. Can you go into detail about why/how the Sphere was a pain in the ass?

    Also Krewes are in no way a required part of Geist, its just an option. At least that was the feel I got from the rule book.


  • Pitcrew

    @FiranSurvivor said:

    I guess we're talking about the Reach? I made a Geist there, but honestly have no room to talk because I was SUPER idle. Can you go into detail about why/how the Sphere was a pain in the ass?

    Also Krewes are in no way a required part of Geist, its just an option. At least that was the feel I got from the rule book.

    It was a pain in the ass because you were super idle and so was pretty much everyone else, and the lack of sphere cohesion (via any sort of anything) made it impossible to actually organize Sin-Eaters organically, which isn't the case in the other splats, which have other problems, but not that one!

    I never said Krewes are required, but they are an integral part of the game. The entire concept of "we don't need organizational splats in our Geist game because Sin-Eaters make their own" falls absolute flat when you have a game full of Sin-Eaters that don't make Krewes.


  • Admin

    Sometimes spheres don't seem to get it going. At times Geist had been active but not involved, the same way that on assorted games different spheres never took off but did elseMU*, obviously using the same theme, mechanics etc.

    It just happens.



  • TR spheres suffered greatly from everyone being allowed to have a character in almost every sphere. You had tons of tagalongs available, but they mainly cluttered up the landscape, made people feel claustrophobic, but weren't active until someone else was there to spoon feed them fun.

    This was very true of Geist. That's why I took my PC and visited and was terrified by the vampire sphere.


 

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