Mortal: Player Guide
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“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”
- Clarkes Third Law -
Though the RCG is a Mystery Cult, it does not count against the MCI cap or 5 dots, and all mortals may receive 1 free dot of Rose City Guild Initiation at Character Creation.
Members of the Guild know one another and gossip flows freely, they gain Contacts () Its a dangerous world and established members of the Guild have safe houses to retreat to when necessary. This may be combined with other RSG Safe Place dots to create a larger and more secure safe house used by multiple guild members. Safe Place (RSG) () Awareness of the supernatural creatures in the city have heightened guild members perceptions over time. Unseen Sense () The guild leaders unseen senses become enhanced and she gains the Unseen Sense, Advanced () merit. The highest tier of guild leadership gains the Unseen Sense, Epic () merit.
Augmented Dexterity (-)
- Protocol at equal level
- At 2 dots this grants a +1 Dexterity boost, at 4 dots it grants a +2. This affects all derived traits. This can take your character above her normal Attribute limits.
- You use your Dexterity for calculating Defense.
Leeching Touch (-)
- Psychic Vampire, Psychic Vampirism
- The hunger of a Psychic Vampire causes many to find non-violent ways to feed, but there come times when a Psy Vamp is forced to act in a more brutish fashion. Some of the older of the Psychic Vampires have come to learn a way to defend themselves more efficiently, turning combat into a feeding frenzy, at the pinnacle of their mastery. This fighting style does not break the limitations of spending or holding ephemera, nor do they allow you to damage creatures that would not originally be effected by the Psychic vampire’s abilities. It is strictly effective in hand to hand combat, up to and including combat with a psychic vampire who is under the effects of their own Shapeshifting Skin.
- Deep (): The Psychic Vampire’s knowledge of the flow of Ephemera allows him to coax it out through the skin. Upon successfully striking (whether damage is done or not), Ephemera ruptures from the victim’s body, causing a single level of additional damage based upon the Psychic Vampire’s mastery (Bashing for levels that do not allow lethal damage to be done, bashing or lethal for those who can pull lethal damage from their feeding)
- Hungry Aura (): Cost- 1 Ephemera to activate for a number of turns equal to the character’s Psychic Vampire rating.
Every inch of skin can be used to feed, and the initiates of the fighting style have learned to capitalize on this, dealing one bashing to anyone who strikes them, adding that single ephemera to their pool (will not increase above their maximum ability to hold ephemera.)
- Overloaded (): Upon successfully striking an opponent, the psychic vampire may spend a point of Ephemera to effectively load it into the victim, causing 1 automatic bashing damage per turn that is not affected by armor or defense. This effect lasts a number of turns equal to the character’s psychic vampirism level.
- The Best Offense… (): The character can opt to use their feeding roll (Intelligence+Occult+Psychic Vampirism) instead of their usual dodge roll. Successes rolled are subtracted from the damage dealt, and half (rounded downed, minimum of 1) are dealt back to the attacker.
Wired Reflexes ( or )
- Protocol at Matching level
- This augmentation increases the speed at which the Lostboys body responds to threats of danger utilizing the users own subconscious reflexes to jerk them out of the way. At two dots, this translates to a +1 Defense, the fourth boosts the Defense by 2 instead.
- No added bonus to Defense, At 2 dots May add half defense roundup vs Ranged Attacks, at 4 dots Full Defense vs Firearms.
Cultivator( to )
Throughout the history of the world, there have been those who have focused on achieving the peak of power. Building upon their strong resolve to push themselves beyond mere human limitations, and cultivating within themselves great reserves to draw upon for incredible feats. This cultivation of Qi allows the practitioner to meditate and collect it within an internal furnace, storing away fuel that can later be drawn upon for many purposes, though the reserve cannot exceed the Cultivators Resolve without further merits.
The degrees of empowerment are generally referred to as Health, Vitality, Mental, Martial and Spiritual. This tends to be the progression of practice, and though it is in no way limited to this approach, Cultivators consider this the most natural and flowing path of growth.
- Patient, Trained Observer, Occult 2, at least one 4 in Attributes
- Meditating provides the practitioner with Qi, which can be used for any number of purposes. This requires the usual Composure + Wits roll, with successful Meditation providing Qi for the stores, equaling the merit rating +1. Any successes beyond the requirement provide additional points of Qi, though any exceeding the Cultivators maximum is quickly lost if not used within the same turn. Qi may be used reflexively once per turn; only one ability per turn.
- A Cultivator must practice daily, meditating and training themself to maintain their Qi. Each day, the internal furnace burns through a point of Qi per dot of Cultivator as upkeep for their empowered body. If the practitioner lacks any Qi to burn, their Willpower begins to sap away, and eventually their health deteriorates at a rate of one Lethal per day. Neither health nor Willpower can be recovered until the Cultivator has resumed their practices and regained Qi.
Furthermore, without Qi the practitioner grows lethargic and careless, suffering a cumulative −1 per day penalty to all Initiative and Perception rolls. This penalty persists until Qi is restored to the system, with a maximum penalty equal to the dots in Cultivator.
At the third dot, the Cultivator will require greater dedication to their practices, purging themselves of impurities and refraining from overindulgence. They develop an aversion to the processed foods prevalent in the modern world, suffering a breaking point when consuming such things so long as their Integrity is five or greater. At eight or higher Integrity, this is more greatly penalized with −1 at eight, −2 at nine, and −3 at ten.
The fifth dot pushes the Cultivator even further still, driving them to seek out an apothecary, alchemist or similar source to prepare rare and expensive, specialized concoctions to maintain the purity and balance in their Qi. It is an exceptionally unpleasant brew, yet another challenge on the path of cultivation.
This takes its toll in the form of time and effort in finding an appropriate supplier, or learning the proper means of collecting and preparing the concoction them-self. The roll in either case is Wits + Occult, with success satisfying a week’s supply or exceptional satisfying what is needed in an entire month.
Elixirist( to )
This merit represents your knowledge about elixirs and how to find and prepare the magical ingredients needed to make them work. Each dot in this merit represents the number of recipes you know and are able to create. Crafting your Elixir is an Intelligence + (Occult or Science) + Elixirist roll. You may create more than one of a particular recipe at once by incurring a −2 penalty for each additional elixir and paying out the cost for them. Recipes and the Purchase Costs are found below. You can create a number of potions per week equal to your Rating. You can only hold a number of potions in your Equipment = to your Elixirist rating. If you do not have the Elixirist merit you may only hold one potion in your Equipment a a time.
Elixirs do not stack. You can only have one of the same sort or affecting the same traits active at the same time. The most recently consumed takes precedence.
Crafting Example: To create 4 of Elixir A, you would roll Intelligence + Occult or Science + Elixirist - 6. If the recipe cost is 1 WP, you would spend 4 WP total to make 4 vials.
Anyone imbibing the Elixir (aware or unaware) must make a Stamina + Elixirist Rating + Supernatural Tolerance roll as many of these Elixirs require things not safe for mortal consumption. On a failed roll, the target gains the moderate poison tilt for a number of rounds = to the rating of the elixirist who crafted the potion
Example: Person A has an Elixirist Rating of 3. Person B drinks the Elixir but fails their roll. They gain the Moderate Poison Tilt for 3 rounds
-Recipes are essentially merits. You gain a free recipe of your choosing at the 1st, 3rd, and 5th dot of Elixirist. Unless otherwise stated, the duration of these elixirs are for the scene
Transference () Cost Per Vial: 1L and 1 WP Duration: Varies
The elixirist mixes a dash of her blood into the potion, infusing it with her essence. As a result, the person imbibing the elixir gains a supernatural merit currently possessed by the elixirist (and determined by the elixirist) for a number of hours equal to the Elixirists rating. On an exceptional crafting roll this lasts for days instead.
Fake Out () Cost Per Vial: 1 WP
This potions slows the heart to the point that the target appears dead for all intents and purposes. Roll a Manipulation + Subterfuge. Any attempts to closely examine the target must beat your successes in order to see through the ruse.
Spirit Sight ( or ) Cost Per Vial: 2WP or 1 Essence Duration: Scene
This potion allows the user to pierce the veil and see into Twilight for a short time. You are unable to vocally communicate with them, but charades or mental forms of communication may be possible depending on the strength of the twilight creature. With the one dot version you may only see in the spirit phase, with the three dot you may see see all phases.
Iron Hide ( or ) Cost Per Vial: 1 WP Duration: Scene
Drinking this potion changes the composition of your skin. It hardens and has a scale-like texture. Increase your Armor rating by 1. With the 4-dot version of this recipe you instead imitate the Iron Skin merit.
Power Drought (-) Cost Per Vial: 1WP per attribute increased (Maximum of 3WP)
For each dot in this merit you may increase a physical attribute by 1. Example: at 2 dots you can increase strength and stamina by 1 or dexterity and strength by 1.
Book Smarts (-) Cost Per Vial: 1WP per attribute increased (Maximum of 3WP)
For each dot in this merit you may increase a mental attribute by 1
Not-A-Wallflower (-) Cost Per Vial: 1WP per attribute increased (Maximum of 3WP)
For each dot in this merit you may increase a social attribute by 1
Coin Flip () Cost Per Vial: 3 WP Duration: 4 Rolls
This potion is mixed up with a particular person in mind to drink it. If there is ill will towards this person they will receive a negative modifier to their next 4 rolls. The penalty starts at −4 and reduces by 1 until they reach 0 penalties. If there is good will towards the target, they will receive a bonus on their next 4 rolls, starting at +1 until they reach +4
Transmutation () Cost: 2WP Duration: Chapter
This potent potion grants you the ability to change up what youre good at. You may swap around a number of skill dots up to your Elixirist rating. You may spend 2WP during the Chapter to switch up these skills or spend 1 WP to end the effects of the potion early.
Transmogrification ( or ) Cost: 3WP or 1 Vitae
When taking this recipe, choose the benefits this potion will grant: 2 for the 1 dot, 4 for the three dot. This potion allows you to alter your biological makeup. Utilizing 3 WP, you may gain the effects of the Biomimicry merit. The one-dot allows for up to Biomimicry 2. WhenThree dots allows for up to Biomimicry 4.
Recipe Book (-) Pre-Req: Elixirist
Allows you to know one more recipe per dot above your elixirist rating.
Secret Garden ()
You have access to a special garden that provides you with better than average ingredients for your potions. Gain a +2 to your crafting roll and reduce WP costs by 1.
Potions Master ()
You have enough knowledge of making elixirs that you have perfected the art of making minor adjustments to the ingredients in order to enhance or slightly alter the effects. Before the crafting process make a Wits + Occult - Recipe Cost. You can make a number of changes equal to half your successes rounded down to a minimum of 1 and a maximum of 4 changes. Changes do not stack. You do not need to use all all of your Change slots.
- Increase or Decrease a given bonus by 1
- Increase or Decrease a given penalty by 1
- Swap out a listed skill or attribute for a different one
- Change a penalty to a bonus
- Add an additional bonus or penalty
- Increase the Duration by one level (Example: Action to Scene, Scene to Day, Day to Chapter).
- Craft an additional elixir without the −2 penalty
- Alter the type of resources needed to craft the potion (Example: 1 WP instead of 1 Essence for example)
Sanguiomancer( to )
- Occult 3, Special (see below)
Most of the time, when a mortal is empowered by Vitae, they become a Ghoul, utilizing it to mirror the vampiric abilities of their Regnant at the cost of their mortal magics. However, despite Vitaes transformative nature, it needs to be directed to this end, and its quite possible to Blood Bond a mortal or other creature without actually altering their abilities. Sanguiomancers are a step between, mortals that have been taught to make use of Vitae as a source of power, storing it and expending it without allowing it to alter and stagnate them as would typically be the case with a Ghoul. Like any Micro Template, they retain their Supernatural Merits, and lack Kindred Disciplines or rituals, but are able to store and make other uses of Vitae that they consume.
This is not a simple process; Vitae is willful, the Blood having a nature and a near desire of its own, so a knowledgeable Kindred must guide the creation of a Sanguiomancer. This involves a special procedure or ritual that must be performed, utilizing at least 5 points of Vitae and the application by a Kindred with Occult or Science 4 and a specialty in Mortal Powers, Psychic Phenomena, Thaumaturgy, Psychic Neurology, or similar; it needs to be something showing unique levels of knowledge of how mortals develop their supernatural abilities. The exact ritual or procedure can vary greatly, but revolves around a guided application of their Vitae through the mortals system, altering it on only a very base, minor level and yet still lingering within the body. At the completion of the ritual, the character is changed, and the first dot of this merit is gained (for free, as is typical with a Micro Template). The process DOES involve enough Vitae to cause the Blood Bond and a check for Addiction.
→Note that a Sanguiomancer CANNOT be ghouled traditionally; the process prevents it, although other template changes can apply to them normally.
- Once per chapter per dot in the merit the character possesses, they may spend a point of Vitae in place of a point of Willpower to empower a supernatural merit or other mortal power. This DOES allow Willpower to still be spent to gain a +3 dice bonus. They do not gain the ability to use Vitae for any of its usual bonuses for ghouls or Vampires; they dont have Physical Intensity, they cant regenerate with it, they can only use it for abilities granted by Sanguiomancer and related merits that require it.
In addition, they become able to buy certain Ghoul-specific merits whos rating is equal to or less than their rating in Sanguiomancer, so long as they meet the other prerequisites, with any mention of Regnant applying to the Kindred whos blood empowered the template: Taste of Shadow/Serpent/Wild/Gold/Fear (only one), Source Sympathy, and Vitae Hound. Further Sanguiomancer specific merits are all assumed to have a prerequisite of Sanguiomancer at a rating equal to or greater than the dots in the merit.
Second Sight Conversions
The following conversions of Second Sight merits is open for use by characters. They’re all simply Supernatural Merits, not confined to a Psychic vs Thaumaturge requirement. Some merits have been renamed or combined, so ask if there’s any confusion about something you’re missing from 1e:
Second Sight Conversions
The following can be chosen as purchase options by those with Biomimicry.
The merit is still limited to 4 dots
- Aquatic Adaptation
- The Mimic gains the ability to breath underwater, as well as slightly webbed toes and fingers that give a +1 to both Speed when swimming and Swim rolls.
- Raptors Sight
- The characters eyes take on the sharpness of a bird of prey, removing up to 3 dice of penalties from perception rolls relying on sight.
- Pit Sensors
- The Mimic gains a form of thermographic sensing, like those of the Viper family of snakes, becoming capable of seeing via heat alone.
- From the spider to the lizard, to the ant and many things in between, gravity isnt the end all be all. Maybe its tiny hairs, or sticky pads, but you have a knack for denying gravity by climbing up seemingly flat walls, and even hanging from ceiling.
- Run like a Gazelle
- Maybe the length of your arms and legs shift to allow you to run on all fours, or maybe your knees bow backwards like a gazelles, but you have adapted for speed and mighty leaps! When running on all fours, add +4 to her Speed and double all jump distances. Like most Biomimicry additions, these changes are always fairly visible and obvious.
Alchemy, Advanced ()
- Occult 4 or Science 4, Alchemy 5
- Your character has learned to not only transmute physical materials, but metaphysical energy. Using the normal procedure for Alchemy, but requiring a ‘nexus’ of some sort, with a penalty for ‘size’ equal to the number of points, and an inherent −5 penalty for ‘Availability’, she can transmute one type of ‘solid’ supernatural energy or substance to another; for instance, she might turn Vitae into Tass, or alter a goblin fruit so it replenishes Essence. This will not let her create magical objects or supernatural substances that normally require other powers to make, although she might destroy one that has energy stored in it to change it into another type altogether. She can’t change normal materials into having energy, although can do the reverse if she wants.
- Working with supernatural materials is much more difficult than with mundane ones, and so some foreknowledge is required. The Alchemist must have broken down and studied a given type of ‘energy’ before, in whatever form they want to have it in, to make use of this merit. For instance, to turn liquid Vitae into solid Tass, they must have had a chance to study both liquid Vitae and solid Tass specifically, whether through scientific methods or merits like Psychometry. The resonance (or emotion) of both substances tends to be unchanged, although Vitae will almost always carry a resonance of ‘Death’ and ‘Blood’ with it, whether the original or target substance.
Arcane Foci ()
- Alchemy , Crafts , Occult or Science
- The character may ritualistically consecrate objects through magic and/or science to act as conduits for their own non-template Supernatural Merits. By spending a day’s time, a Willpower point, and a point of Lethal damage, the character may consecrate the item to fit their specified power including multiple instances of the same Merit, like Curse Effigy or Clairvoyance. Roll Resolve + Occult, with a −3 penalty unless the character has personally crafted or significantly modified the item to their paradigm, typically represented with Crafts rolls. This allows the item to act as Equipment for that power, with a bonus equal to half the prerequisite Skill’s rating, rounded up.
- Only the creator gains the effect, as it is bound to their specific methods. A character with this Merit may not maintain more Foci than their maximum Willpower rating. Foci are also visibly unnatural to the right eyes. Anyone with 3+ in the Merit’s chosen Skill may roll it with Wits to notice something isn’t right. Also, foci leave additional spectral evidence. Add the Merit’s rating to any supernatural roll to detect the activity of powers used with foci (e.g. Psychometry, Postcognition.) Though they do not naturally ping in of themselves, active supernatural senses may detect foci.
Body Reading ()
- Aura Reading, Biokinesis
Through careful practice of understanding the mind/soul/body connection within oneself, one can learn more from an aura than before. While typical Aura Reading reveals emotional states, Body Reading includes health, fitness and well-being. There is no separate roll for Body Reading; it simply expands the questions one may glean answers to. Make a standard Aura Reading roll. In addition to the questions listed in Aura Reading, each success may instead answer one of the following questions. While the questions are presented in game mechanics, the Reader will experience the knowledge as an abstraction, i.e. The OOC discovery that someone had Strength 5 would be perceived as “this man is at the pinnacle of human strength.” -How many dots does the character have in a given Physical Attribute? -How many health boxes are filled in, and with what kind of damage? -What physical Tilts, Conditions, or other effects are affecting the character?
Mind Over Body ( or )
- Sometimes the only way to persevere is sheer willpower. This merit lets you tap into mental reserves beyond your normal capacity, at a price. In this case, the price is your very health. Use a instant action to regain 1 point of will power in exchange for taking one point of resistant lethal damage; no magical abilities can heal or downgrade this damage. The three dot version allows this to be done as a reflexive action.
Never Tell Me The Odds ()
- Damned Lucky
- Being lucky doesn’t always mean you hit the draw, but you do consistently beat the odds. This power is how you do it, by essentially doubling the odds in your favor. That Atariya rolls Wit+Subterfuge, with a success they can reroll a single roll. Or force/allow another character to reroll a single roll. If the target is not willing, he can contest the roll with Resolve+Power Stat. The Atariya must live with the results of the reroll, for better or worse. Twisting fate to this degree does not come without a cost. Activating this power costs 1 Lethal damage that cannot be negated or healed by supernatural means.
This power can be used Reflexively, but also can be used ahead of time and stored as a “charge”. If unused the “charge” expires at the end of the scene.
Upon an exceptional, the Atariya can choose to add or subtract a single success from the result.
Ritual Sorcerer (-)
- One Mental Attribute at 4, Occult 4
For every dot in this merit, you may choose one non-damage dealing supernatural merit (Omen Sensitivity, Mind of a Mad Man, etc). You may now perform a ritual to utilize the merit without spending Willpower as outlined below. Each roll made = 1 hour. The power goes off when the ritual is completed. If the number of successes matter for the power - such as determining the number of questions that can be asked - make the correlating activation roll.
Additionally when purchasing the first dot of this merit you may gain a ‘mastery’ in a particular subject such as making charms or summoning a particular type of spirit. When making rolls related to this subject, gain a +1. You gain an additional mastery at dots 3 (+2) and 5 (+3).
- ‘ Extended (TN = +5 for every dot in the merit. Example:′ Automatic Writing would be a TN of 10)
- ‘ ’ ‘ Mental Attribute + Occult
- Dramatic Failure: The ritual backfires. Choose one of the following conditions: Spooked, Shaken, Madness, or Fugue
- Failure: Something went wrong, the ritual doesn’t work
- Success: The ritual works as it should
- Exceptional Success: The ritual works better than expected. Ignore the Drawback of the Merit
The Beasts Darling ()
- Beast Whisperer
- Unlike the beloved merit, the vampire who finds their frenzy in your presence may have no feelings for you at all. But the beasts of the kindred have an instinctive fondness, a desire to protect you from themselves and maybe sometimes even from others. While you may not serve as a test of their detachment, you do serve as a balance to their frenzy. The beast is less inclined to frenzy in your presence, less willing to risk you, and if they do frenzy more likely to listen to you .failing any of that you can always count on the fact, that at the very least, the beast will turn on you last
System wise, Kindred in your presence gain +2 to resist frenzy and if they fall into frenzy their blood potency is treated as if 2 lower, to a minimum of 1. For the expenditure of a WP a beast in the throes of frenzy, who isnt already antagonistic you, will instinctively become protective of you.
- There are few drawbacks as strong as a vampires grief. To wake from the frenzy and find friends, loved ones, torn assunder by the beast, and you still standing. Its a quick way to draw the punishment of all those delightful stages of grief .in a very cold .dark .and lonely place, for many years or life times. If you have not soothed the beast before their frenzy finds their friends ..it might be best to stop trying and just go with the bloody flow.
Telekinesis, Advanced ( - )
- Telekinesis , Resolve , Occult
- Your telekinetic abilities are raising to frightening levels, more and more its own muscle, and destructive. The two-dot version of this merit allows your telekinetic attacks to deal lethal damage. For each additional dot taken, you may also add 1 to your effective merit rating for Telekinesis, allowing it to go above 5. For instance, at 4 dots of this merit your effective Telekinesis (and the strength derived) is 7.
- Transcending your prior limits like this is changing you. Acquiring this merit is a breaking point.
Unseen Sense, Advanced ()
- Unseen Sense
- Your characters sixth sense for a type of supernatural creature is increased. By spending a point of Willpower she can extend the range of her unseen senses to 100 yards. As with Unseen Sense, the player can accept the Spooked Condition, in exchange for which the character can pinpoint where the feeling is coming from; this reveals all triggers of it within that range. If the target is using a power that specifically cloaks its supernatural nature, however, this does not work (though the Condition remains until resolved as usual), nor does it work against powers that use mental illusions to conceal or otherwise hide the character.
Unseen Sense, Epic ()
- Unseen Sense
- Your characters sixth sense is increased to detect any supernatural creature, and she is able to distinguish between them. As with Unseen Sense, Advanced, the player can accept the Spooked Condition, in exchange for which the character can pinpoint where the feeling is coming from; this reveals all triggers of it within that range. If the target is using a power that specifically cloaks its supernatural nature, however, this does not work (though the Condition remains until resolved as usual), nor does it work against powers that use mental illusions to conceal or otherwise hide the character.
Velocity Drag ()
- Telekinetic Evasion
- While using Telekinesis to avoid a fist or a baseball bat is easy, what happens when someone comes at you with a pistol or shotgun? Being mortal means being able to die, but someone with the power of Telekinesis can learn to lessen the impact of ballistics on their body by creating a field of drag around them that bullets must pass through. While this effect has little notice on slow moving objects like melee weapons or brawling fists, high-velocity rounds are restricted in their speed or misdirected to less sensitive areas. Characters with this merit may spend an additional willpower for a scene to treat their dots in Telekinesis as Ballistic Armor, providing the same sort of defense against guns that mundane armor would. This armor protects against Armor Piercing tag as well. This can be applied in any scene where you have telekinesis active.
- Firearms attacks made from weapons you wield while inside the protective barrier suffer from the same Ballistic armor against your opponents, the drag works both ways.
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