GameRef: Second Sight Conversions

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Second Sight Conversions


Second Sight Conversions

All of the following merits count as Supernatural, and thus are usable only by mortals, without some special ability (such as the Coil of Zirnitra) or access through a Cult or similar sort of special condition.

Second Sight Supernatural Merits

Alchemy (••• or •••••)

Prerequisites
Occult •• or Science ••
Effect
Your character, through a mystical or neoscientific process, is able to perform the ancient miracle of changing one type of substance into another. With the 3 dot version of the merit, both substances must be common, simple, and non-precious (Availability 2 or less), but with the 5 dot, both can be any non-radioactive material (The Storyteller reserves the right to prevent other troublesome materials as well). Doing so requires an hour of work, a lab or other specialized equipment of at least Availability •••, a point of Willpower, and a roll of either Intelligence + Occult or Science, penalized by the size of the substance, and the higher Availability of the starting or target substance. With an exceptional success on the roll, the material will grant a +3 bonus to any crafting roll performed on it.
Suggested Modifiers
Performed on a nexus of some sort; A Hallow, Locus, or Wyrm’s Nest, for instance (bonus equal to the rating), performed under stress (−1 to −3)

Astral Projection (•••••)

Effect
Your character has learned to project their mind outward, allowing one to free their consciousness from their physical form and travel through the world spiritually, leaving their body behind. This requires a point of Willpower, a successful meditation, and a Resolve + Occult roll to enact.

If successful, the character becomes separated from their body, taking on a psychic form in Twilight (in phase with Goetics and similar mental entities that find their way there). They remain intangible and physical to mundane reality, utterly unable to interact physically with reality, and are cut off from his other psychic abilities for the duration of the ability. However, their speed is multiplied by 5 for the duration, allowing incredibly fast travel through the world, and they’re unbound by gravity or physical obstacles. Their body remains in a coma-like state for the duration, slowly degrading if not fed or given liquid. They’re unaware of its state unless they take damage, in which case they feel the pain reflected on their astral form. They must travel manually back to their body, however, in either case. Whether their body is kept alive somehow or not, if they’re away from it for more days than they have Stamina, it begins to break down, causing them to take 1L damage per hour until they return or die. Finally, if their physical health track is filled with lethal or aggravated damage, they instantly return to their body, though will be comatose or dead, as appropriate.

Suggested Modifiers
The character rolls an exceptional success to Meditate (+2), the character’s under stress or is distracted (−1 to −3), the character’s already able to perceive some aspect of Twilight (+1).

Channeling (• to •••••)

Effect
Whether through a connection to the astral realms, ancestral spirits, a past life, or a stranger source altogether, your character has the ability to channel abilities and knowledge they do not possess for themself.

When purchasing this merit, choose either mental, physical, or social skills. By spending a point of Willpower and meditating successfully at a location representative of your character’s abilities (a Locus for one who channels spirits, or a graveyard for someone who calls upon their ancestors’ knowledge), you may make a roll to temporarily improve a skill in the chosen category. For mental skills, it’s Intelligence + Occult, social are Composure + Occult, and physical are Stamina + Occult. On a success, the character is able to replace a skill rating of theirs in the appropriate category with their rating in Channeling for the next 24 hours, for all purposes. On an exceptional success, they may set two different skills to that level.

Drawback
Channeling is a drain on a character’s mind and spirit, and so may not be used more than once in a given day. In addition, using it causes the Resonant, Anchor, or Infrastructure condition on them with relation to all of a given type of Ephemera, dependent on the ultimate source of their channeling, for so long as it lasts. With Storyteller Permission, odd forms of channeling might cause another condition or tilt instead.
Special
This merit may be purchased multiple times. Each time it’s bought, it applies to a different skill category. Different versions of the merit may be used in the same day, but suffer a −2 penalty to the roll for each other type already active.

Communion (•• or ••••)

Effect
The character is capable of reaching out with his mind to that of a faraway entity, often one of godlike power or capability. Work with the Storyteller to determine the nature of the entity, at least to the extent that the character is aware of it, as it’s a character in its own right, even if one not represented with typical dots on a sheet.

To do so, the character must successfully Meditate or perform a similar sort of ritual (with the same roll), focusing on a symbol or other representation of the entity, and then make a Composure + Occult roll. If successful, contact with the entity is initiated. With an exceptional success, the entity is well disposed or clearer than normal in its communication.

With the two dot version of the merit
The character is simply able to open themselves to the entity and allow it to communicate with them, but the communication is only one way, allowing the character to do nothing more than sit and listen. However, the entity tends to inherently know why it was sought out, and may provide information relating to that. In addition to whatever information the Storyteller cares to provide from the entity, the character gains the Informed condition about whatever topic he sought wisdom about (if the call was more general, the topic is whatever the entity feels is most relevant).
With the four dot version of the merit
The character opens up bilateral communication, able to ‘speak’ with the entity in addition to learning from it. This allows more nuanced guidance of the conversation, allowing for more specific information to be learned most times. In addition to the above benefit, the character may utilize the provided wisdom to gain access to the rote action benefit on a single (mundane) action (not roll; extended actions receive it for each roll) that’s begun before the end of the day.
Drawback
The entity has goals and desires as well, and should the character work against them, or even just fail to assist, they may receive fallout. This often takes the form of an automatic failure on the next use of the ritual, along with a negative condition or tilt, but the Storyteller may come up with other options as well.

As well, if pestering the entity more than once per Chapter without a VERY good reason, directly related to the entity’s goals/desires, they may be ignored (causing an automatic failure of the ability) or worse.

Countermagic Ward (•• or •••••)

Prerequisites
Wits ••
Effect
The character becomes able to shield themselves from sympathetic magic and powers of various sorts, allowing them to gain a warning about impending abilities and prepare accordingly, or even build up a form of protection against it.
The two dot version
Allows a character to spend a point of Willpower and roll Resolve + Occult to gain a sense of impending magic; for the rest of the day they become immediately aware of any supernatural ability working through a range greater than mundane perception (such as a Mage’s Sympathetic spells, Curse Effigy, or certain Blood Sorceries of Vampires) that targets them, as soon as the ability STARTS being used, rather than at the end. They also get a sense for when it’s about to unleash on them, allowing them to spend Willpower or use other abilities to improve their resistance to it. With an exceptional success on the initial roll, they also get a brief vision of the offender upon the spell’s use. In the case of magic that’s been somehow veiled, cloaked, or otherwise made hard to detect, a Clash of Wills must be made first to detect it successfully (roll Supernatural Potency (if any) + Resolve).
The five dot version
Works similarly, but applies its own form of protection in addition. Each success on the Resolve + Occult roll cancels one of the caster’s own, and if this brings it down below their target number, the ability is canceled altogether. In the case of a Mage’s magic, each success removes a point of Potency instead; this is NOT a Withstand rating, however, and cannot be ignored through any means that bypasses Withstand.

Dowsing (•• or ••••)

Prerequisites
Wits ••
Effect
Dowsing is a limited form of divination, allowing your character to detect hidden objects using a specialized ‘rod’, crystal pendulum, or other focus. By concentrating on either a known object or a type of substance (such as water or oil) while utilizing the aforementioned focus, spending a point of willpower, and making an extended Wits + Occult roll (15 minutes per roll), they become drawn towards the location. The target number of successes is based on the rarity of the substance or Availability of the object, and the distance from the character.

As a general rule, 3 successes is the base target, +1 success per point of availability of the object or substance,+1 per mile of distance to the nearest source, to an absolute maximum of 10 needed successes (after which it becomes simply impossible to find it). With Dowsing at 4 dots, the time per roll becomes 5 minutes, and objects/substances can be found with up to 20 required successes.

Suggested Modifiers
An energy meter is used as the focus (add the equipment bonus), the character meditates beforehand (+2), the object belongs to the character (+1), the object is important to the character (+2), the character has minimal tie to the object, or knows little about it (−3),the substance is incredibly rare in the area, such as water in a desert (−1 to −3).

Dream Travel (•••)

Prerequisites
Lucid Dreamer.
Effect
Your character becomes able to enter the dreams of another, and shape them the same way they’re able to control their own dreams. To do so, they must be capable of seeing the target, whether through mundane perception, Clairvoyance, Astral Projection, or a similar supernatural ability (this merit bypasses most restrictions on using other merits with sensory abilities). At that point, 1 Willpower is spent and Manipulation + Occult is rolled, contested by the target’s Composure + Supernatural Tolerance if unwilling or unaware. If the target’s not asleep at the time, the ability automatically fails.

If successful, your character is able to enter the target’s dreams, taking on a Dream Form per the normal rules for it, and is capable of Oneiromancy in a manner similar to a Changeling (See Changeling the Lost 2e pg XX, though without the template’s normal benefits such as Wyrd). This benefit also applies even when defending the character’s own dreams from outside threats. The character may leave the target dream at any time, unless kept within the dream by a supernatural ability of some sort, in which case a Clash of Wills is required to leave.

Ephemeral Sight (•• or ••••)

Prerequisite
Medium
Effect
Your character is capable of seeing ephemeral entities. With the two dot version of this merit, choose a specific ‘phase’ of Twilight (that is, ghost-attuned/death-attuned, spirit-attuned, etc). You may perceive that phase of Twilight, including any entities within or other ephemeral constructs residing there. With the four dot version of the merit, you’re capable of seeing ALL phases of Twilight.
Drawback
Seeing into Twilight constantly is as much a curse as a blessing. The character suffers a −2 penalty to any perception rolls due to the mixed perceptions unless they spend a point of Willpower to shut it out for a scene (effectively turning off the merit). In addition, entities the character can see find it easier to affect them, granting them a +2 bonus to Numina, Influences, or other powers targeting them from Twilight.

Ephemeral Transmutation (•••••)

Prerequisites
Medium or Unseen Sense (any Ephemeral entity)
Effect
Often achieved by those seeking out a form of enlightenment or ascension, this ‘ritual’ of sorts allows your character to attune themselves to Twilight, not projecting within but instead physically transforming into a Twilight state. The character makes a meditation roll, though this may also represent a ritual or other procedure rather than typical meditation, and then rolls Resolve + Occult. If successful, they end up shifting themselves into Twilight for a scene, attuned to a type of ephemera chosen when the merit is purchased (In the case of Unseen Sense used as the prerequisite, the type must match).

Evocation/Invocation (••+)

Prerequisites
Occult ••, and Channeling, Medium, or Unseen Sense (any Ephemeral entity type)
Effect
Your character has knowledge of ‘generic’ summoning rituals that are capable of summoning a given type of Ephemeral entity, chosen upon purchase of the merit, without requiring the normal research time or need for specialized applications of Conditions. By purchasing an additional dot per type of entity, additional entity types can be called,

This works with the normal rules for Summoning ephemeral entities (CofD page 139), but requiring just a single Intelligence + Occult roll to mystically attune the area to the entity, which takes approximately 15 minutes; this can be either a specific, named entity, or just a call to the nearest of a given type of spirit. If successful, the area becomes Open to the chosen type of entity, and call is sent out to them. They must answer the call unless they succeed on a Rank + Resistance roll and garner more successes than the character did on their own roll, and must remain there for the scene, although this does nothing to protect the caster otherwise. By adding two dots to the cost of the merit, the character may, upon the entity’s arrival, roll Presence + Persuasion + Evocation vs the entity’s Rank + Resistance to force it to obey a single command that can be delivered with a short sentence and isn’t self destructive (or against the entity’s ban), and if successful it must attempt to follow that command to the best of its ability for the rest of the scene, and may also not harm the summoner for that same amount of time. As a note, when targeting angels, this merit does NOT allow the caster to cause an Angel to work against its Mission from the God-Machine, nor to do anything to make it fall.

Alternatively
Two dots can be added to instead grant a responding entity the Possession Manifestation if they don’t normally possess it with a roll of Presence + Occult + Evocation, and act as if they themselves are Open, offering themselves to the entity for whatever purposes. Often, it acts as their side of a bargain, as many entities will offer up basic services in exchange for the use of a physical body.
Drawback
Ephemeral beings don’t like being commanded any more than most people, and will likely attempt to cause trouble for the character after the fact if not supplicated somehow.

Mental Blast (•••••)

Prerequisites
Telepathy ••••• OR Mind Control
Effect
This incredibly rare and dangerous power allows a character to reach out with their mind to damage another’s with a form of mental feedback that overwhelms and slowly destroys the target’s brain. The character spends a point of Willpower and rolls Presence + Intimidation - the Stamina of their target (who they must be able to see without any magical or mundane aid), and deals a bashing damage to them per success, starting out as a migraine but as damage rolls over into lethal or even aggravated it takes the form of hemorrhages, strokes, and similar maladies. An exceptional success on the attack may inflict the Insensate tilt for a turn as the brain misfires and makes it difficult to focus.

By concentrating for additional turns and maintaining a view of their target, the character may be used in successive turns without additional Willpower needing to be spent, but any turn in which the power is used, the character loses their defense and may not take any other actions beyond moving their Speed in a turn, and if they lose sight of the target at any time they must re-enact the power at the full cost. Any failure breaks the connection, requiring a point of Willpower to start anew.

Drawback
This power is innately ‘visible’ to supernatural characters. Characters with a micro, half, or full supernatural template may roll Wits + Occult when attacked to realize where said attack is originating from.

Mind Breaker (••••)

Prerequisites
Evil Eye, Mind Control, or Telepathy •••••
Effect
Your character is able to fracture someone’s mind with sheer force of will or mystic might, degrading their rational thought into a maddened blur. By spending a point of Willpower and successfully rolling Presence + Empathy or Intelligence + Science vs a character’s Resolve + Supernatural Tolerance, you may inflict the Madness Condition on a target for the rest of the scene. In combat, they also suffer from the Insane Tilt.

Plant Empathy (•)

Prerequisites
Biokinesis •+
Effect
Your character’s attunement to living things provides them a ‘green thumb’ of sorts, allowing them to cultivate plants and other flora more easily. Any dice pool relating to the cultivation of plant life gains a number of bonus dice equal to the character’s Biokinesis rating, as does any roll to put such plants to use (such as mixing herbal substances or cooking a meal with freshly gathered plants). In addition, plants under their care grow (1 + their Biokinesis rating) times more quickly than normal.

Postcognition (•••)

Effect
Your character, whether through a mystical trance or a psychic attunement, is able to see into the past. By meditating, spending a point of Willpower, and making a Wits + Occult roll, they become able to get a sense of what has happened in the area they’re in at a specific, specified time, allowing them to see a brief flash of the scene, and to ask a number of questions equal to successes rolled about it. These questions must be something that could be found out by investigating the scene if present at the time; it won’t allow mind-reading or insight into outside factors without another ability.
Drawback
The roll is penalized by both the distance back in time and the sympathetic connection the character has to the event. For an event further than a week back, a −1 penalty is taken, −2 for a month, −3 for a year, −4 for 5 years, −5 for 10, and then an additional −1 for each additional 10 years. They must then possess either an object or be in the presence of a person that was involved in or present at that scene; an object causes a −4 penalty, and a person a −2. Having neither makes the roll impossible.

Psychic Empathy (••• or ••••)

Prerequisites
Empathy ••• or Manipulation •••
Effect
Your character is able to manipulate the emotional state of another, affecting their mood or even completely overriding their emotional well-being. The three dot version of this ability lasts for up to a scene, and the four dot lasts for an entire day.

The character spends a Willpower and rolls Manipulation + Empathy - target’s Composure. For each success rolled, any Social rolls (by anyone) made that would evoke or work against a specified sort of emotion gain a +1 bonus or −1 penalty against that character, as appropriate. On an exceptional success, this can also improve or reduce an Impression in Social Maneuvering by a step (in addition to a potential Condition), as appropriate to the emotion chosen. For instance, by dulling anger, this might cause a penalty to rolls to intimidate or goad the character, and by stimulating one’s curiosity, Impression might be improved by offering up a simple secret. This ability is not capable of affecting a Kindred in Frenzy, a Werewolf in Death Rage, or any similar supernatural emotional state.

Soul Jar (••••)

Prerequisites
Occult ••••
Effect
Using a form of dark energy, nefarious ritual, or similar infernal process, your character is able to create special containers called soul jars, which become attuned to a dying individual’s soul, able to capture and hold it within. This involves two rolls; first, an occult crafting roll at a −5 penalty, to create the jar itself, and second, a Presence + Intimidation roll versus a dying victim’s Resolve + Supernatural Tolerance (A dying victim is anyone with aggravated damage greater than their stamina, or who is actively bleeding out). The character must touch the dying victim to do so.

If successful, when the victim is about to die (their second to last health box is filled with aggravated damage), their soul is drawn out and into the Jar, giving them the soulless condition. If they manage to survive somehow, they suffer the full progression of Soul Loss as they normally would. There are a few things that the character can do with these collected souls. By opening the container while touching a Soulless character (including themself), they can resolve any soul loss related conditions and grant them the soul normally. Alternatively, a soul can be bartered to ephemeral entities or other supernatural creatures (certain Mages seem to make good use of them). Finally, the soul can be ‘consumed’ during a use of another Supernatural Merit, requiring an additional instant action, but granting the rote action quality to the roll as a result. Note that this only works on those with ‘mortal’ souls, which includes any mortal, micro/minor template, half template, or Mage, although attempting it on a Mage causes an additional −3 penalty due to the way their soul is ‘held’ within them.

Drawback
Such a heinous act is ALWAYS an Integrity breaking point at −5, and actually ‘consuming’ the soul with another merit use causes another breaking point at the same penalty.

Telepathic Rapport (••)

Prerequisites
Telepathy and either a Retainer, True Friend, Mentor, or willing PC to act as the target.
Effect
The telepath is able to form a permanent connection to another character, able to use whatever level of Telepathy or related merits they have on them at any time, without any willpower cost, although the normal roll must still be made. There’s no distance limitation to the ability, as the merit represents a powerful sympathetic bond that the character becomes able to draw on to ‘target’ their ability.

In addition, if the target of the Rapport is ever subject to intense emotions or danger, the character may roll Wits + Empathy to sense that emotion and impending danger, although this provides no inherent ability to track them down.

With Storyteller permission
This merit may be taken without meeting the Telepathy prerequisite, regarding someone they have an intense spiritual and emotional connection to in one form or another, allowing them to benefit from 3 dots of Telepathy and the mechanics of this merit on that character only. Often, this will be two way, allowing each character to sense the other.

Visionary Trance (•• or ••••)

Prerequisite
Unseen Sense (Spirits) or Medium.
With the two dot version of this merit
Your character has learned to go into a specialized trance that allows them to peer briefly into the Shadow (the Spirit world), and communicate with any entities nearby. To do so, they must go into a trance (using a Meditation roll), spend a point of Willpower, and roll Resolve + Occult, with a modifier depending on the Gauntlet Strength. If successful, they can see and hear the local reflection of the Shadow, and become mildly visible to any Spirits or similar entities there. They can communicate if the spirits understand the same language as them, but cannot use other abilities on the Shadow or its denizens, nor be targeted by spiritual powers if the spirit lacks the Reaching Manifestation. This lasts for so long as they maintain the trance.
With the four dot version of this merit
After successfully entering such a trance, the character may use an ability similar to Astral Projection to project more fully into the spirit realm, rather than Twilight. Since there’s no Twilight in the Shadow, they become effectively physical, using the Dream Form rules to determine their capabilities and health, and they take Soul Shocked if ‘killed’ while there. If the character somehow possesses spiritual objects like a Fetish, such items ‘project’ with the character, but no other equipment does (however, their form still appears clothed if they want it to). This has the usual limitations and duration limits of Astral Projection itself, and also leaves the character’s body Open to spiritual entities.

Warding (••)

Prerequisites
Resolve •• and Occult ••
Effect
Your character is able to create ‘generic’ ephemeral wards that function against more than just a single specific entity. This involves first crafting a special, chalky substance attuned to a given type of ephemera with a Wits + Occult roll, −3 if targeting something other than spirits or ghosts. This acts as the ‘generic’ bane for that type, and is used to mark an area, allowing the character to perform a Warding ritual normally, though with a −5 penalty, lacking a specific entity’s Rank to use. This will then be effective on ANY entity of the given type (of rank 5 or less) for the usual duration.

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