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metaphysician

Aberrant RPG - Aberrant / Scion Crossover

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They may not be able to create the effect of a nuke very easily, but given 3 or at tops 4 dot of Correspondence they can find a nuke and transport it to themselves, the boot of a car or enclosed truck to have it appear in would even make it coincidental.

Actually i just realized how easy it would be for a Mage to create a Nuke. Matter to create the fissionable materials and simple Forces to set it off...and even if it was vulgar in the way they choose to do it all you need is to burn some quintessence and shrug it off.

That sort of thing is *exactly* why game balance and sanity go out the window if we follow a "it might be possible for some specific nova somewhere so mages don't get paradox for it" line of thought... although IMHO monsters from the ID coming back to the Earth when the walls fall is even worse (hey, *anything goes*).

If you want game balance, don't play Mage. Mages system is so freeform and open and Mages litterally can rewrite reality. All it takes is a little player cleverness. Also to point out to you that just because Mages could impersonate Novas (In a crossover like this the answer is an emphatic "Yes they could) doesn't mean the Gauntlet, or in the case of what you are getting at the Horizon is just going to collapse. Both predate botht the traditions and the technocracy and near as I can tell came into being back when all mages were Dreamspeakers.

The Tech Overlords have *won* the reality war, they're supposed to be the uber powerful guys with the mages on the run. Mages only survive because they blend into normal humanity and practice their powers in secret and by coincidence. Coming out into the open and pretending to be novas and assuming their "rock star" lifestyle sounds good but IMHO it breaks too many of the core functionings of being a mage.

Well yeah it breaks the setting, but we did that when we proposed Novas in a crossover. Do that and all bets are off. Also you are not quite correct in the first statement. Technocrats ARE Mages.

It's like a mage trying to use coincidence to pretend to be a specific person (the President for example). Novas are a non-human natural force and IMHO they would add a *lot* to what is coincidently possible. But pretending to be a nova sounds pretty vulgar. :)

Nope. Vulgar is when you do something "against reality." When Joe Shmoe starts talking about his favorite Novas on the WoD equivalent of NPrime humans arent going to "disbelieve" it in quite the same way anymore. It may still be uncanny and awesome and surreal but now they are going to say "Wow. Nova!" instead of "thats *impossible.* All you need is the possibility.

Also as a minor but important point, Novas are human, Aside from the sterility cocktail they can breed true with humans who may or may not pass on the latency gene. They are a sub-species of Homo Sapiens. Homo Sapiens-Novus. If they were really a sseperate species they would have the same genus but be called Homo Novus.

As for becoming a nova via genetic manipulation and cloning, that also sounds good... but we have in game attempts at this which have turned out very poorly. I.e. the Coalition and the Trinity Super Solider Program types. The one guy who can do this (Divis) also has enough power to rip the moon from it's orbit, which should give us an idea of the scale of power needed for this sort of thing. The Q-min and Power level for both of those abilities is the same BTW.

Divis soes it with Quantum might. They have trouble in Trinities setting because they don't have True Magick (or as a technocrat would say Science, distinguished from mundane science by a capital 'T').

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Actually i just realized how easy it would be for a Mage to create a Nuke. Matter to create the fissionable materials and simple Forces to set it off...and even if it was vulgar in the way they choose to do it all you need is to burn some quintessence and shrug it off.
Depending on how far away they are from the nuke Paradox might be the least of their problems. But considering the lack of nukes going off in Mage I suspect there's a flaw in this line of reasoning somewhere. Mages are being hounded... why don't they ever decide to take some of the other team with them?
If you want game balance, don't play Mage. Mages system is so freeform and open and Mages litterally can rewrite reality. All it takes is a little player cleverness.
Mage, like Amber (and some others) is supposed to have an ST who can and will keep a leash on the players if (*when*) they get out of hand. If someone tries to create a nuke *something* happens to prevent it. Maybe Paradox backlash, maybe there are other issues, but the players aren't the only, much less dominate, force in the universe.
Also to point out to you that just because Mages could impersonate Novas (In a crossover like this the answer is an emphatic "Yes they could)...
This is stating your conclusion as a premise. Also the issue isn't whether they could but whether there would be extreme negative side effects.
doesn't mean the Gauntlet, or in the case of what you are getting at the Horizon is just going to collapse. Both predate both the traditions and the technocracy and near as I can tell came into being back when all mages were Dreamspeakers.
So what? *Anything Goes*. Presumably a nova with Taint 10 could become one of those big nasty creatures from the other side (or become something darn like it), so why couldn't one of the original big and bads come back?
Well yeah it breaks the setting, but we did that when we proposed Novas in a crossover.
In a crossover everyone is supposed to keep their strengths and weaknesses. Superman moved to Marvel still has his vulnerability to "K".

If Werewolves/Hunters/Vampires/Etc went public, would Mages gain the ability to use Hunter (etc) powers openly? Yes? Then why aren't Mages working to expose Werewolves/Hunters/etc?

Also you are not quite correct in the first statement. Technocrats ARE Mages.
Agreed... but as I recall, even they still need to worry about Paradox. If they whip out some gizmo that's better than anything currently available, the idea that it *might* exist in some mad scientist's lab somewhere won't save them.
Nope. Vulgar is when you do something "against reality." When Joe Shmoe starts talking about his favorite Novas on the WoD equivalent of NPrime humans arent going to "disbelieve" it in quite the same way anymore. It may still be uncanny and awesome and surreal but now they are going to say "Wow. Nova!" instead of "thats *impossible.* All you need is the possibility.
"Wow. Nova!" isn't mutually exclusive from "Impossible".

I've seen a lot of movie magic that should be (and is) impossible outside of a movie. If in Real Life I saw something "Vulgar" I'd look around for a film crew. Changing it so I'd need to look around for a nova isn't IMHO a big difference from that or "The local God did it". I know that I and other humans can't do these sorts of things. This is true regardless of what happens in film, or whatever the powers of "God", etc.

Also as a minor but important point, Novas are human...
Not by WoD rules. As I recall Werewolves (etc?) can also breed with humans. Considering the physical changes that come with the basic nova package (extra organ, differently wired nerves, different reactions to drugs, lethal soak, etc), I'd rank Novas as considerably less human than Mages or Hunters. Mages and Hunters can pass an autopsy or medical scan as human, but no nova could, even one with Dorm 5.
Divis soes it with Quantum might. They have trouble in Trinities setting because they don't have True Magick (or as a technocrat would say Science, distinguished from mundane science by a capital 'T').
So Magic automatically works better than any other power? I'd suspect it's easier to manipulate Quantum with Quantum than with Magic or with Psi or whatever... especially because eruption is basically a very brief use of Plank Scaling (i.e. no rules). With Q8, Mega-Int 8, a century of practice, etc, the one guy who can do this needs a level 5 power, or roughly the same level of power he'd need to alter the moons orbit. The implication is that this is a seriously hard thing to do, and this born out by other attempts to do the same thing.

Granted, maybe someone else with a different power base would have an easier time of it, but since you're basically trying to create a god and the various in game uses of "cloning" and "genetic engineering" haven't worked well, I'd guess that magical attempts to do "cloning" and "genetic engineering" also wouldn't work well. Of course all this means for Mage is the dots needed to do it go up.

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Ok, they can't do it for a true baseline, but in theory the guys whn came up with the method of creating the Nihon Superiors could reprogram anyone with the supranormal gene to be a Nova and trigger the eruption.

In AsAs they only create the Superiors, but the text implies that any of the alternatives should be possible with a different set of techniques on the same principles.

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Do Mages have a history of this sort of thing in Mage (I really don't know). I.e. can a Mage, at least in theory, create a Vampire? They both use Magic don't they?

As for what is possible, Superiors are basically DareDevils aren't they? As for "the same principles", considering we're probably talking about Quantum Tech built by the local novas, there might not *be* any principles.

Of course the tanks create psions, but it's not really clear what the technology is. I.e. "bio-tech" might mean that they actually have the living brain of a psion in there triggering people.

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Mages can't create vampires, but that's because vampires are the result of an outright divine curse.

Mages can create various magical constructs and enhancees and such. For the Technocracy, this includes clones, genetically engineered dopplegangers, cybernetic death machines, stuff like that.

The key thing is, they don't create stuff that is intrinsically and potentially as or more powerful than themselves.

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As for what is possible, Superiors are basically DareDevils aren't they? As for "the same principles", considering we're probably talking about Quantum Tech built by the local novas, there might not *be* any principles.

According to Trinity canon there is a gene (or sequence) which marks the Inspired and environmental factors on the individual determine a switch into which form of latency the person gets - Psion, Nova or Daredevil.

AsAs, so pretty much canon, states that the Nihon test all their population and those that are latent for a sane Nova get erupted under government controls. Others either get their gene for latency wiped, or if thought to be a suitable candidate turned into a Superior. This involves wiping the environmental factor back to a general latent state then forcing it into the Daredevil mode and force triggering them, the result being the Superior form of Daredevil.

This extra knowledge of the Nihon is as much due their still having the Human Genome information as it is to their Nova/Superior scientists. If they had access to enough psiads or perhaps data on the Prometheus chambers then they should be able to work out a way of doing it to produce a form of psion, and perhaps they do for the 'new order' in Bright Continent?

Given the progress the Noeticists/Vitakinetics have made in about 15 years without the Novas or Genome info, I'd say they are only 10-15 years from duplicating the process. However they are more likely to detect and redirect Novas to Psions.

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Of course the tanks create psions, but it's not really clear what the technology is. I.e. "bio-tech" might mean that they actually have the living brain of a psion in there triggering people.

Fan, not canon I know, but TFR:Noetics explains it as plasmid biotech, basically viral gene therapy, integrates some elements of Doyen DNA into the Psion amidst the main biotech of the chamber.

Personally I think it is this Doyen DNA which both sets the limit to one Aptitude and allows the Doyen to possess Psions, while the Psi field of the Chamber then triggers the latent into activity.

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Depending on how far away they are from the nuke Paradox might be the least of their problems. But considering the lack of nukes going off in Mage I suspect there's a flaw in this line of reasoning somewhere. Mages are being hounded... why don't they ever decide to take some of the other team with them?

Mage, like Amber (and some others) is supposed to have an ST who can and will keep a leash on the players if (*when*) they get out of hand. If someone tries to create a nuke *something* happens to prevent it. Maybe Paradox backlash, maybe there are other issues, but the players aren't the only, much less dominate, force in the universe.

This is stating your conclusion as a premise. Also the issue isn't whether they could but whether there would be extreme negative side effects.

So what? *Anything Goes*. Presumably a nova with Taint 10 could become one of those big nasty creatures from the other side (or become something darn like it), so why couldn't one of the original big and bads come back?

In a crossover everyone is supposed to keep their strengths and weaknesses. Superman moved to Marvel still has his vulnerability to "K".

If Werewolves/Hunters/Vampires/Etc went public, would Mages gain the ability to use Hunter (etc) powers openly? Yes? Then why aren't Mages working to expose Werewolves/Hunters/etc?

Agreed... but as I recall, even they still need to worry about Paradox. If they whip out some gizmo that's better than anything currently available, the idea that it *might* exist in some mad scientist's lab somewhere won't save them.

"Wow. Nova!" isn't mutually exclusive from "Impossible".

I've seen a lot of movie magic that should be (and is) impossible outside of a movie. If in Real Life I saw something "Vulgar" I'd look around for a film crew. Changing it so I'd need to look around for a nova isn't IMHO a big difference from that or "The local God did it". I know that I and other humans can't do these sorts of things. This is true regardless of what happens in film, or whatever the powers of "God", etc.

Not by WoD rules. As I recall Werewolves (etc?) can also breed with humans. Considering the physical changes that come with the basic nova package (extra organ, differently wired nerves, different reactions to drugs, lethal soak, etc), I'd rank Novas as considerably less human than Mages or Hunters. Mages and Hunters can pass an autopsy or medical scan as human, but no nova could, even one with Dorm 5.

So Magic automatically works better than any other power? I'd suspect it's easier to manipulate Quantum with Quantum than with Magic or with Psi or whatever... especially because eruption is basically a very brief use of Plank Scaling (i.e. no rules). With Q8, Mega-Int 8, a century of practice, etc, the one guy who can do this needs a level 5 power, or roughly the same level of power he'd need to alter the moons orbit. The implication is that this is a seriously hard thing to do, and this born out by other attempts to do the same thing.

Granted, maybe someone else with a different power base would have an easier time of it, but since you're basically trying to create a god and the various in game uses of "cloning" and "genetic engineering" haven't worked well, I'd guess that magical attempts to do "cloning" and "genetic engineering" also wouldn't work well. Of course all this means for Mage is the dots needed to do it go up.

I just had the most eloquent beautifully written post. I felt I presented my arguments in an almost painterly style. I mean I really dug what i just wrote...and then when i tried to post it it was a post too long error and I lost it all. Therefore as much as this discussion has fascinated me and I had many awesome points to share, i now have to throw in the towel.

:(

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Mages can create various magical constructs and enhancees and such. For the Technocracy, this includes clones, genetically engineered dopplegangers, cybernetic death machines, stuff like that.

The key thing is, they don't create stuff that is intrinsically and potentially as or more powerful than themselves.

So either they *can* not, or they *would* not... although given the lack of stability (or the inadvisability of creating gods) I'd say that's more *should* not.

I think when we start trying to figure out what kind of person would make the ideal candidate for Mage triggering into a nova we get contradictions. If you take one of your best and brightest, you might end up with a powerful, crazy, taint buttered monstrosity (if not now then in a few years) who knows everything about you and yours.

....they should be able to work out a way of doing it to produce a form of psion, and perhaps they do for the 'new order' in Bright Continent?
Unless they start trading knowledge with the Shifters or stealing it from them (or perhaps one of the other groups... which isn't impossible considering their resources) I'd say no. Far as I know their current pool of available psions to study is something close to zero.

But granted, the day when the Earth can trigger someone as DD or Psion isn't all that far off. I'm a lot less convinced we'll be able to trigger Novas. Far as I know even Divis didn't trigger people (although Scripture might be an exception...). In theory the APG Level 5 power rules suggest he should have been able to, but what we appear to have seen world wide was something closer to "random". Worse, Trinity attempts at artificially triggering novas (and Collition ones for that matter) have been pretty messy.

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Sorry Alex, but according to AsAs or earlier, the Nihon have had DNA from at least two of the Proxies (Bue and Cassel) for quite. It was finding the alien elements in their DNA and that of the psionic biotech that caused the Nihon hostility to psions and biotech. Given their mastery of terristeral biotech you can count on them have a full DNA and genetic sequence of every psion, and probably everyone else, who has applied to visit the islands since they re-opened. So although they may not have psions on hand to study they do have a range of psion genetic samples.

It also states in AsAs that they can tell the difference between those that will erupt as a Trinity style Aberrant and those that turn out like a Nova. The Abberants they either wipe or turn into Superiors and the Novas they trigger.

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...It also states in AsAs that they can tell the difference between those that will erupt as a Trinity style Aberrant and those that turn out like a Nova. The Abberants they either wipe or turn into Superiors and the Novas they trigger.
Their "brush" is rather too broad in that they suppress anyone who would get any taint as I recall. But point taken.

On a side note I'll point out that the amount of time it took them to get this information together and figure out what it meant was *very* non-trivial, i.e. likely after the war started.

Put a different way, I'm not sure if this is a point in favor the tech-mages (it's *possible* to solve this riddle), or against them (the amount of time it took, even with lots of mega-Int focussed on it, was so long that the world burned down before they got an answer).

Nor am I totally sure what the tech-mages would and should do with this one. Make novas? Suppress Novas? Something else?

On a side note I've found my (old) Mage book and have been re-reading it.

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I'd say that Mages could do it, but given the evidence of Taint and the problems it causes I doubt that many would be made.

I could also see Technomage members of PU using Life and Prime to cause sterility in Novas rather than drugs.

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I'd say that Mages could do it, but given the evidence of Taint and the problems it causes I doubt that many would be made.
Agreed. The issue is less whether they could and more how long it would take.
I could also see Technomage members of PU using Life and Prime to cause sterility in Novas rather than drugs.
Now this is interesting. Sounds a lot like Abby Cannon... especially if they use coincidence to get the job done and they probably would.

One side implication is Mages had better *not* publically declare themselves to be novas regardless of the benefits. The Technomages *will* look into them and if they're just a Mage they'll try to do something about it.

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Okay, minor pet peeve time.

When a Technomage decides to induce sterility in someone, he *is* using drugs and gene 'therapy'. He's just using drugs and gene therapy that shouldn't, yet, work, but do so because of backing by inspired science.

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I agree that drugs etc would be the coincidental effect, but by using magic there is nothing for regular science to analyze and reverse/cure.

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...by using magic there is nothing for regular science to analyze and reverse/cure.
That's fine and explains most failures to deal with it... but still leaves open the door to Q-gadgets and powers.

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I agree that drugs etc would be the coincidental effect, but by using magic there is nothing for regular science to analyze and reverse/cure.

To the contrary, there is stuff for regular science to analyze and reverse/cure. . . or at least, to *try* and do so. And there has to be, its part of the whole point of the Technocratic paradigm.

However, what happens is, the mundane scientist attempting to do so won't actually be able to figure out how it works. Its not that that there is nothing inside, or random stuff that shouldn't produce the effect ( like with a lot of quantum gadgetry ). There'll be stuff, and it will seem to follow scientific principle, insofar as it can be understood. The overall result just can't be fully understood or duplicated, akin to finding an advanced alien artifact. A mundane scientist won't look inside the device and say "this is nonsense", they'll say "this is more advanced than I can comprehend."

Note that this is *not* necessarily the case with non-Technocratic inspired science, or with some of the more outlandish improvised gadgetry done on the fly.

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right. In the way that someone from the past versed in mechanical machines would open up a PC and see abunch of wires and copper and be unable to comprehend it...even though it is still working on Scientific principles. However it is worth noting that Mackical Science in the form practiced by the Technocracy can rewrite reality and do *anything* just as easily as any other form of True Magick.

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Only the more vulgar stuff. The things that can pass for coincidental, is more like a scientist from the 1950s openning up a modern PC. He wouldn't really have a clue how to duplicate it, but he could figure out at least part of how a lot of the innards worked.

And the flexibility or lack thereof is really aside the point. The reason the Technocracy can get away with this is not because of what they practice, per se, and more to do with the fact that they *are* the dominant paradigm, and so basically the whole world practices the 'static' version of that paradigm.

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Not a lot to add to the argument really, mainly as I haven't bothered to get any of the NWoD stuff and so I'm not sure if or how much they may have changed the setting since the last set of rules I have.

However, I spotted that this topic was at 99 replies and thought I may as well pump it up to 100! ::biggrin

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Which is in and of itself enough for me to never consider playing it ever. The freeform Magic system is the best I have ever seen in any game.

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Mage2.0's system *is* free form. It just has different rules than 1.0, and has more emphasis on rotes ( since learning them actually benefits you ).

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Having read the first quickstart rules/scenario for NWoD Mage I have to say that I much prefered the previous versions, although I can't now remember which version or combination that we used for the magic rules. Know me some combination that gave the best chance of success and minimum Paradox.

One thing I certainly didn't like in the latest rules was the introduction of magic pts that severely limits how much magic you can do. I prefer Paradox and getting caught to be the onlx limits.

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Spells only cost mana if they are either improvised, sympathetic, or extremely powerful, though. Its not *that* big of a limit, unless you don't purchase new rotes regularly.

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Spells only cost mana if they are either improvised, sympathetic, or extremely powerful, though. Its not *that* big of a limit, unless you don't purchase new rotes regularly.

I thought the whole point of Mage was that you should want, and be able, to do improvised magic all the time.

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My point exactly. magic shouldn't be thought of in terms of rotes spells etc. but as the reweaving of the tapestry in allignment with one's personal Will.

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Since I last read this thread, I've actually gotten ahold of the three core Scion books and skimmed them. So, if we assume everything else is equal, and place nova and scion in a situation where the metaphysics of both worlds holds true ...

A 30NP nova will often wipe the floor with a Legend 2-4 Scion. Depending a great deal, obviously, on the respective powers and pantheon of the two.

Q6-8 novas will often wipe the floor with Legend 5-8 Scions. Again, depending a great deal on the respective powers, as well as who goes first. Consciousness Supremacy could be more useful than Quantum Mastery at this power level, IMO.

Q10 nova versus Legend 10-12 Scions will depend almost entirely on who goes first.

::biggrin

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