Tuesday, 21 December 2010


Over the course of the chronicle, e few new Merits have entered play. The problem is that these are more powerful, and have a different impact on the game, than what normally falls under the Merit-system. For that reason the need for a revision of these homebrewed merits have arisen. First of, a name is needed to separate them from the rest of the abilities of an nWoD character, and I've landed on Gifts.

As with all these posts, this is to be considered a draft, and any changes that appear after play-test or discussion will be edited in. New Gifts will also be added to this post as they are brewed up.

In the Dawn of Days, gods and elder beings walked on Argos. Some of them took human lovers, and their offspring came to bear the blood of the ancients. In those days, the children of the ancients walked the lands as mighty heroes. As the ages passed, these heroes wed the children of man, blood became thinner, and the might of the children of the ancients faded into myth. Still, even today, in the darkest hour, there are still those carry the blood of the ancients in their veins. These heroes can interact with creation in ways others can't. They may be able to perform great feats of strength, commune with gods, or call on Creation itself to aid them.

The Gifts take many forms, and while some changes the entire appearance of those who bear them, others are more surreptitious.  Some of the Gifted appear as tall, statuesque, heroes of legend, others are indistinguishable from their neighbours.

Gifts cost 5 XP times the purchased dot.

Heart (• - •••••)
The blood of the Ancient Heroes flows rich in your veins. You will stand out in a crowd, and most will know that there is something special about you. Whether they will seek to support or harm you depends on their disposition.

This merit also gives the hero special powers, and he may buy the Vampire: the Masquerade Diciplines Potence, Celerity and Fortitude (at a cost of 8 x next). The Dicipline-level may not exceed the Heart-level. Further, the Heart Merit also fonctions as a de facto Bloodpool, and each dot gives one Heart-point. These are replenished each day. Only available at character creation.

High Speech (• - •••••)
Creation speaks in may tongues, and some of these are purer and closer to the truth than others. The High Tongues are such languages, some were spoken by the Exalted, others by the first magicians, yet others by races or peoples long forgotten. But their words still command Creation. Magicians have long studied the truths of the ancients, and especially their words, for by understanding these, great powers can be harnessed.

For each two dots beyond the first, the Mage may add one die to any spontaneous or rote-magic dice-pool, e.g. 1 dot = +1, 3 dots = +2, 5 dots = +3. For a list of High Tongues, see this post.

Totem (• to •••••)
The player decides which Totem this Merit applies to when it is first purchased. Once this is done, it may not be changed unless under exceptional circumstances. The player may purchase more dots in this Merit to reflect a stronger bond to the Totem.

Each Totem has a Ban and a Boon, independent of the Merit rank. In addition to these, the Totem may also aid or guide its children. To gain its help, the character rolls a number of dice equal to the Merit rank, and successes are added as dice to the task in question. This bonus lasts for one scene, or one extended action. As with divine favours, the aid of a Totem is not something to be take for granted; ultimately, the ST decides whether the Totem will aid in a given task or not.

It is very rare for a totem to manifest on the Prime Material Plane, and usually it will only do so if summoned by a Theurge. In such cases, it follows the same rules as other spirits.

See this post for more information on totems.

Source (• - •••••)
These Merits define the Magician's metaphysical conection to Reality, or, from which Domain he draws upon his power. Each Domain has its own rules and Essence.

The Source may be used to replenish the Magician's Mana. To tap into the reservoirs of the Domain, he needs to establish a connection. This requires meditation; three successes on Composure + (affiliated skill) + Source roll must be accumulated to establish the connection. Each hour connected will yield one point of Mana. Note that this does not allow the Magician to glean any insight from the Realm, but he may be reached by those who dwell in it.

The Magician may also attempt an Astral Immersion. This may be risky, for by sending his mind into the Realm, not only can he interact with it, and its denicens, these may also interact with him. To achieve an Astral Immersion, roll Composure + Source, three successes must be accumulated. Each hour of Astral Immersion will yield a number of Mana points equal to the Magician's Source score.

It is possible for a Magician to be affiliated to more than one Realm, but he can only draw upon one Source at a time. It should be mentioned that by attempting to ride two or more horses, or serving more than one master, he may well find himself in a lot deeper than he intended.

The Magician is affiliated to the Realm of Gods, and draws his powers from it. Most who are connected to this Realm chose to draw their power from a particular God, or Mythos. This offers some advantages, and some limitations. The Gods may award those who act according to their wishes, and punish those who do not.

Connected Ability: Occult

The Realm of Dream is perhaps the most open of the Realms, but it is also the most dangerous one, for the Dreamlord is the Prince of Nightmares, and many of the more powerful Dreams have agendas of their own.

Connected Ability: Empathy

The Primordial Realm is that of the Elements, the Mountains, Hills and Plains. It is often considered to be the Realm of Creation itself. It is often distant and uncaring, but there is great power to be found in its depth.

Connected Ability: Survival

This Realm is that of logic, science, purity of thaught, cause and consequense. Many great ideas can be found here, but it is also the Realm that limits its affiliates's Magic the most, for it is defined by the Laws of Concensus.

Connected Ability: Academics

This is the Realm of the arcane, and though it offers great strength and power, it also exacts a great price from those who delve to deep, or to fast. In it, Hybris lies, patiently awaiting, and Quietus stalks the ambitious like a shadow.

Connected Ability: Crafts

[Picture source unknown]


  1. This is more WtF than you know, H. It's all good stuff, and I like it a lot. But definitely reminds me of The People.

  2. Heh, it's WTF, you say?

    Seriously though, I am aware of strong W:tF connotations here, and if it's anything like W:tA, the name Gifts doesn't make it sound less wolfish. Then again, I had to call it something, and Edges sounded too... I don't know... modern? Any suggestions to a more era-appropriate name not allready taken would be greatly appreciated.

    As for the totem, I read the totem-description in W:tA before I cooked up my take on it.

  3. I like these. Last session we had to come up with a Changeling version of the "Herd" Merit from Vampire: tR to simulate the PCs ability to harvest Glamour more easily from humans.

    Good stuff.

  4. Neat! Entourage would be a great name for that one.

  5. Entourage, I like that. It has a much nicer ring to it than "Glamour Sluts," which is what we were calling it. ;)

  6. Haha! At least you're honest.

  7. Both of you: EASIER? Bah. My ST is making it HARDER for me to use people as food.(Eile is TOTALLY a Glamour Slut!!!)

    He's decided I need to "earn it" and so now I gotta go get Goblin Fruit and such nonsense.