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Aberrant RPG - Need tips on consequences of a book...


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As the title says, I need a few pointers.

I'm playing a 1998 game and I have a mentalist who also happens to be a genius (Mega-Int/Per 4), in fact, this early in the game he his one of the most brilliant and astute mind on the planet (and with mega-int 4, he'll remain one for a looong time).

Well, to him it is painfully clear that while Nova/Baseline are both humans, it's silly to expect that Nova to bend down to Baseline law. Novas are human yes, but they aren't baseline, if they so wish it, they shouldn't be forced to act like baseline.

Since the game is just past the Zurich accord, he's been mouthing off and invited to many talk shows. However lacking any persuasion skills, he's not very convincing and is pretty much invited as the token "provocative" figure.

A good thing is that he has been invited by Orzaiz and the Mathematician to share ideas.

Anyway, annoyed by his lack of communication skills, he decided to write a book. He rolled a whooping _13_ successes, the book will be published thanks to Raoul Orzaiz and you just know that something that "scandalous" will sell a lot (much like the book that claim there was no holocaust sold like crazy).

The guy also knows his shit (Academic 4, Spec: Psychology, Philosphy, Antropology), and with that many successes, he's making a LOTs of good points.

When the book hit the shelves in the 3rd quater of 1999, just what will happen? A few ideas I have:

- The 'teragen' mindset will spread quicker. The Teragen themselves will probably form much earlier, with Scripture and Divis Mal joining sooner as they are drawn to the enlighted novas.

- With my players influence from the start, the group will be much more cerebral. Brutes like the primacy and nova vigilance will eventually exist, but they will be much less present/cohesive then in the original setting. (i.e. More Portent/Marvel, less Monsters)

- Flip side of the coin, pro-humanist Nova will be outraged by the book and will answer in kind, which will somewhat counteract it.

However... they are caught with their pants down, it will be a few months minimum before they are able to make a significant impact. There's also the fact that my player may very keep pressing his points rather then just let other deconstruct it.

- The 2000 crisis will be much worse, already many cults are forming (end of 1998) about the incoming "end of the world" and the nova demons/angels. That book coming roughly 5 months before the big 00s won't help. T2M will have to help with riot control.

- The writer of the book will become infamous, known almost everywhere... and probably not liked.

Anything more ideas, suggestion, brainstorming is welcome.

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"Is Utopia short sighted and full of themselves or still nervous about their place on the world stage and looking for support? If the latter, they will court him with the ardor of a smitten lover. More importantly, how does he feel about baselines in a growing nova culture? It is very possible that he has found a third path which Divis Mal will finding lacking and therefore not approach the nascent Terragen movement but rather keep looking. Beware of the balance in the world... While your group is decidedly more cerebral, the killers and violent are still there on the fringes and may be the ones Mal chooses to enlighten."

[This message has been edited by Wizard (edited 08-22-2001).]

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Hey all. LAme as it is I suggest you read some old X-Men issues, see if you can get a copy of the old God Loves, Mam Kills graphic novel. That would be good inspiration for this. Also if this is before 2000 Utopia isn't firmly in place yet and any big disruption by any nova is going to get them there in a hurry. That character will be heavily recruited and his book hushed up as much as possible. It is also possible that the nascent Project Proteus will seek to eliminate him so he does not hurt Proje4ct Utopia before it really gets started. Depending on what country he is from, he might start being watched and/or leaned on by law enforcement groups. Those folks don't like it when someone says group X is not subject to their authority. He might get himself targeted by the governemnt or by paramilitaries as a threat to the nation. Religious groups will also start putting the squeeze on the character and anyone he knows. Squeeze means benign, well meant harrassment as well as bricks through windows, bombs, etc. Some countries might ban the book all together (causing a huge censorship debate, especially in the US) which would minimize the book's effects. Still being an academic, non-fiction book it will not spread much outside of academia and other such circles. The reason the Null MAnifesto was so huge was because it was broadcast on every radio and television in the world. EVERYBODY heard it. Your character's book just won't be able to generate that much noise. Just my thoughts. HAve fun.


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>>It is also possible that the nascent Project Proteus will seek to eliminate him so he does not hurt Proje4ct Utopia before it really gets started.<<

Alternately, your character, but producing this book, might inadvertantly be the actual CAUSE of Project Proteus. P/U might never have imagined needing such a branch, but then your character prints this and...

Depends on how much you want to play with Proteus, I suppose.

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Winter Heart, look at it from a different angle. Romance novels are only outsold by the bible and the bible has a vast support structure. Even with Orzaiz helping you, the book shouldn't sell much outside academic circles. Yes, it is the best scientific work in ages, but how interesting is it for the average man/woman on the street?

Hell, Mal might steal some of your writings for his manifesto, but you shouldn't make Oprah, Good Morning America, or the Tonight Show. Most people simple can't grasp your thought processes. Your too brilliant.

The biggest problem is your character is a brilliant scientist/philosopher/thinker but he isn't a novelist (would that me Man.+Rapport?).

Read Heisenberg or Einstein. Both were brilliant but drier than burnt toast. They even changed the world over a period of 50 years.

Utopia should pick you up just because you are so brilliant and they can offer you avenues to explore some of your ideas that will soon be illegal for you elsewhere.

Just an option.

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A thought for you, Jager.

By the roll of 13 successes in writing the book he's not written the most brilliant book in the world. Rather, he has, through this medium, succeeded perfectly in communicating his ideas. Even a barely literate aboriginal of only nominal reading ability can grasp his ideas and underlying rationale with a little perseverance. That doesn't mean that he will become an instant success and a household name. That is a function of exposure and marketing.

With his alliance to Orzaiz and Pedro, however, there must still be a conscious decision on whether to 'push' the book. If published and advertised it will be a hit! It is highly accessible and easy to read for everyone. Something like a cross between a self help book and a Dummies Guide to Quantum Power, Baseline and You would be a fair description. Not to poke fun at the characters efforts but as an indication of the ease of reading and comprehension. Unless the book is suppressed it will be a hit with the public just starting to go crazy for all things nova. Everyone will read it, everyone will understand his ideas whether they agree with him or not. He actually has the possiblity of becoming the Mal of this time without the implicit fear of his abilities. The non-Utopia spokesman for the new race.

Regardless, he will become the expert on nova and baseline interaction until he's challenged by more telegenic and photogenic novas. I think you can safely assume that Mal will seek him out for support or directly challenge him as well as Utopia.

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Point taken, TC. I misunderstood what he was aiming for.

WinterHeart, what was the author aiming for when he wrote the book? Is the author ready for the complete disappearence of their private life? The only other complication this Devil's Advocate sees is that are CO and the Mathmatician ready to go upstream against Utopia at this early juncture? How does Pedro see this altering things?

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Jager: Actually, probably not.

He's certainly not expecting to have early Michealites throws rock throught his windows and having spray painted insult on his frontdoor. As I mentionned in my first post... he will become quite infamous.

He's a mentalist, and he's still very vulnerable to physical assault.

He wrote the book because he was annoyed with people with much less to say taking the spotlight away from him... while he has a good manipulation and a great understanding of the mind... he's not very charismatic and even a tad homely. A book was to him, the perfect way to finally get his point across without being interupted or having to share TV time with another person. And that's what he really wanted to do... get his point known clearly.

Mind you, it will still be a hefty books and one that use many big words... but very few people have read Main Kemph or the whole Bible... yet almost everybody has strong ideas and opinion about what are inside those books. Big brains and elitist will make it a duty to vulgarise the book.

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Now I'm confused and may owe Jager an apology. As the ST, what did 13 success on a literary roll mean to you?

I take it you see absolutely no good coming from the writing of this book as all the examples you provided are negative. I find myself pitying the character. He's done the literary equivalent of making a trip to the moon in a Toyota Celica and won't even get the experience of getting laid by a homely nova groupie. Geez, even J. R. Rollings got a better deal than that out of her first book.

[This message has been edited by Tuesday Childe (edited 08-25-2001).]

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You're mostly TC... what you said is definitly what he was going for.

However, personnally, I have a lot of trouble believing such a huge work of sociology/psychology would be accessible to everybody. While he may have wrote beautifully and with simplicity, there mere terms he'll use in there aren't the kind of things everybody know... and he never said he wanted the book to double as 'psychology 101'.

That's my ST call, to make it something that isn't necessarily easy for 'Joe verage' to get... however, anybody with somekind of education (i.e. Who's read big books before, College+) won't struggle to much with it.

His arguments however, are extremely sound and solid, very hard to detract or shoot down. It's going to be rather difficult to crack it down so to speak. And since this is so early on in the setting, many intellectual may actually agree with him.

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What Stat+Skill were used?

Does the man have any skill at creative writing (could be seen in academics). When I was majoring in Enginnering, we took techinical writing courses so we could relate tech/science material to business grads.

Perhaps more than one roll would have been necessary, like: an Int+Science or Academics for the material and Wits+Rapport for its presentation, as Wits is the 'Intuitive' sense, and Rapport relates to the understanding of people.

A good example of this would be an Int+Science roll to invent a new engine, but it would take an Int+Enginnering to build it.

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I only made him roll Intelligence+Academic. I guess maybe I should ask for another roll, but I don't like the 'Blacksmith' syndrome as I call it.

I.e. To make a sword, you need to be strong (STR), have a nimble strike (dex), and after all, it is a physical labor (Sta), not to mention that you need to have a keen eyes to do the work properl (Per) and you need to be smart enough with 'geometry' (Int)... so Blacksmithing end up taking 5 rolls just to make a fucking sword.

If you deconstruct a certain task far enough, eventually you need to make a zillion roll just for it to work.

He does have a good Manipulation (with a mega) ... like I said, his mentalist theme is pretty much explained by his understanding of the human nature (He controls dreams and the subconscious mind)... so obviously, his rapport his high.

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Well, since it's your call and he's on a roll anyway... Perhaps he needs to consider writing that "Introduction to Quantum Power, Novas and You" right now and striking while the iron is hot. For the purpose of educating the masses too ignorant to understand an educated man. As they say in academia, publish or perish. Then he can follow on with "Quantum Power and Responsiblity: The Big Lie" and cover the opposite end of the spectrum and explain reality to novas too ignorant to comprehend the thoughts of an educated man. Within two years he can have:

- Project Utopia alternating wanting to recruit him for his implicit understanding of the social dynamic and wanting to discredit him so he can't tell anyone else; to

- the Directive alternately opening his mail and arguing about whether they should recruit him; to

- Groupies wanting to form his cult; to

- Michealites wanting to lynch him for a single sentence taken out of context; to

- Proteus wanting him firmly in custody for debrief to see what he knows about the 'threat'; to

- The Protectors wanting him to join and help write the ethos for their theoretical colony of novas and baselines; to

- Divis Mal paying him a visit for reason known only to Mal.

His privacy was a dead issue anyway in the nova age. He's just more visible than most and suffers the baggage that everyone thinks they know him because they read the book.


Tuesday Childe

having far to go...

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