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Chuubo's Thread 5: "Glass-Maker's Dragon PDF Now on Sale!"

Yuki Akuma

New member
So I'm having a little trouble determining how a particular miracle of a character of mine should work.

Specifically, I'm making a "Spirit of Freedom" with Awakening 3 and Creature of Fable 0. Her 'Second Self' is a person who climbed an ancient spiritual mountain, gained access to a monestary atop it, and was taught by the monks there to project herself into a 'world where she could be truly free' - which turns out to be Town. Her aesthetic is thus freedom (in a sort of Hindu or Buddhist way - she's probably "actually" a Wildlord or something), as well as mystic knowledge and enlightenment. And also a minor aesthetic of water (as her Second Self is floating in a mystical pool in the monestary while she's projecting her spirit into Town).

I've worked out how all of her miracles should work - her Blessings involve whispering secret mantras to free the thoughts of her pupils and/or involves pushing them into the nearest body of water, her Conversion is all about teaching her targets to let go of their attachments to the world and be Truly Free, her Old Memories involve her letting go of the idea that she isn't capable of a specific thing, etc. It's all about letting go of attachments and letting your mind be free, in short.

But... I just cannot get my head around how Materialize should work. What concepts would she be manifesting into reality, exactly? I'm utterly stumped on how this should work :(
 

Felix

Member
RPGnet Member
Validated User
How about things that bring you freedom from what's tying you down? Keys to free you from prisons, cash to free you from debt, antacids to free you from indigestion. Or to keep it less worldly, meditation gardens or special incense to free your mind.
 

Gamerngeek

Registered User
Validated User
Seriously, dude?

Two weeks ago, Jenna said that she had the proof, but needed a week in which she wasn't sick or injured to be able to proof it. Which was in this thread, on this page. What news do you expect?
Let's do the math, She said she needed a week...21 days ago. I don't think that when 3 times the time she said she needed have passed are reason enough for you to jump down my throat.
 

Yuki Akuma

New member
How about things that bring you freedom from what's tying you down? Keys to free you from prisons, cash to free you from debt, antacids to free you from indigestion. Or to keep it less worldly, meditation gardens or special incense to free your mind.
That's not really the problem I'm having. Sorry, I should probably explain why I'm having a difficult time wrapping my head around this...

Okay so essentially Materialize would be, in Nobilis terms, something along the lines of a "Destruction of Not-A-Physical-Object", yeah? So you take ''fear of a shark" and remove the first bit so it's just "a shark".

I just can't think of a satisfying not-object for this miracle to be targeting. What "Not-A-Physical-Object" is she targeting? What's the Estate of this miracle?
 

FrivYeti

Yeti On The Lam!
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Let's do the math, She said she needed a week...21 days ago. I don't think that when 3 times the time she said she needed have passed are reason enough for you to jump down my throat.
Okay.

Instead of jumping down your throat a second time, I am going to take a moment to explain why your first post pissed me off so much, and why the second almost did the same.

Jenna didn't say that she needed a week to proof it. She said that she needed a week in which she wasn't sick or injured. She has been both sick and/or injured.

The charitable thing to do, in such a case, would be to come in and say, "Glad to see that Jenna is well enough to start writing on her Patreon again!"

The uncharitable thing to do is to say, "Man, it's been three weeks without news, obviously she got better and then decided to futz around instead of delivering us what we are clearly owed."

You jumped into the thread to do the second thing, and you haven't made any positive posts, so that's the only thing I know about you. The tone of your post strongly implied that you don't think that there's an actual problem, except for the problem that you don't have a book yet.

Yes, it has been a while. Yes, things have been delayed. Keep in mind that Jenna is, for all intents and purposes, acting as a publishing company for Chuubo's, because the publishing company that was supposed to be doing a lot of these steps bailed on her and stole a bunch of money. She didn't actually have an obligation to give us anything after that, but she has continued to do so on her own time.

So, yes. I get pretty testy in general when people passive-aggressively imply that creators aren't working hard enough for their tastes, and I get even testier when those people aren't taking part in productive conversation first. I'm sorry to have jumped down your throat, but I'm not sorry to be opposed to the sentiment that you were offering.

I hope that explains things fully.
 

Maxen M

Somewhere off to the side
Validated User
About the character with awakening, you have an interesting twist on it here that you seem to have a character who knows ahead of time that they come from another world into the world of town. That's ok, but it does obscure slightly what the arc is supposed to be doing to someone's perception of being in the "normal" world, vs the "higher" one.

So like suppose I go on a mystical journey in tibet, and they get me to astral project my consciousness back to my home town, where I just live out my life as a ghost version of myself, who is exactly the same except I occasionally phase through objects, mystically absorb food by contemplation rather than eating it, and stuff like that. This will be a strange twist to my life, but not one that changes my sense of the "realness" of my home town, unless, I start walking around treating everyone as spirit guides for my inevitable transformation, metaphorical projections in order to improve my growth, encouraging me to a sudden honesty and a slightly reduced sense of empathy, trying to interpret what people's actions mean as symbols for me, and being kind as a practice rather than immediately realising that people are concerned or upset or excited.

Basically, if I am slightly confused about the actual reality of the world, and just treat it as a metaphor or means to an end for some higher one, then I can end up doing all kinds of strange things that make the awakening power set more natural.

In this solipsistic interpretation, the world would be interpreted as my dream world, npcs reflections of my subconscious, inception style, or jungian avatars or spirits of other people's expectations of me who I can incorporate into myself. So conversion would reflect a series of encounters where I recognise similarities between them and myself, or people from the past, resulting in them getting "re-"absorbed into my character.

Similarly, established history would strikingly affirm the non-reality of the world I was astral projecting into, allowing me to astral project not into the normal world, but into a variant of it where I was actually a used car salesman before I left, or a tailor, or a newspaper journalist, or swap the positions of the characters I have so far taken over embodying.

I mean, obviously, if this is a chuubo's version of the real world, then we could say, no actually it is isn't saying that the world isn't real, but that your desire to use this part of the world as a stage for your enlightenment is shifting it in ways that accommodate that. So I could zip around having my "what if I was a rich man/homeless man/black sunglassed detective inspector" realisation, but any player character with a halfway relevant memory-protecting affliction would be able to chat to me about events that happened a few days ago when I was in my last identity.

(And honestly, maybe it makes sense for players to be able to do that anyway? Wishes that say "and it has always been thus" should probably not do so in ways that overwrite the existing emotional development of play, so I'd be inclined towards players being able to remember as much as possible what things were like before you retconned the bits that include you, even if we handwave some differences.)

For materialise and absorb, in this version, the question of where things go, and where they come from, is the same as the question of where my astral form goes when it is no longer projected into my home town; it returns to my brain/chakra-nadi network/aura/unmanifest alignment with my gross matter body/precious bodily fluids. Basically, I'd say that it returns as an idea, symbol or perspective in my head, and things can conversely be manifested as one. A person absorbed becomes a character, and slowly fades from memory, an object absorbed becomes an idea or design, and so on. (Because this version is mostly about personal identity, these things probably should hold personal significance, or otherwise be symbolic, in the same way as the people who get converted are interpreted as symbolic representations of the past or expectation, but that's really the only restriction, it's relatively expensive after all.)

So now I've stretched my legs a bit on awakening, how about your version?

If converting people and freeing them are the same thing, then probably you are sort of treating them as separate individuals to yourself, possibly meditating in the same mountain retreat, but taking longer in their meditations than you? Like you turn up, and there's all these other people learning to be free, and they haven't quite got the knack yet. (But once they are you, in character sheet terms, they will be able to start using the powers that you have, particularly creature of fable stuff if you keep advancing that, (so shapeshifting, impossible actions off camera, countering things that restrict them)or old memories from awakening, and shift their identities however they want)

So then you can think of the world as a kind of meditation plane, made of manifest thought, which similarly makes the process of representing absorb and manifest pretty easy, with one complication; you can just say that either things in town are crutches or tools to achieve enlightenment and freedom, that can cease to exist when no longer needed, or be created to match, or you can say that they are other people in your world. The latter is the complication; shouldn't knocking someone out of the meditation plane and removing their crutches behave differently? Like with people setting a scope on their world breaker's hand, an absorb that builds off an arc with a distinction between thoughtforms and unenlightened beings probably shouldn't treat them the same way. You could get more Buddhist or Deceiver-y about I suppose, and say that there are no actual individuals, but I don't think you'd want to be fixed to that..

All that said, you can think of objects from "manifest" representing most perfectly the idea you already have for what town represents; a route to freedom generated from a watery pool. So maybe you could generate "enlightenment spirits", watery guardians that sloosh about helping people abandon problems, protecting them from distractions or create props and decorations that look like they would come from some devotional picture, or maybe "reflections" of things that complement or counter them in some way? Basically, I would say that however your character sees the world being relative to their secret "real" world, particularly as relates to converting people, make more of that stuff.

So if the world to you is a meditation plane in which people can be free, maybe create buddhist-ish things that promote freedom or are reflective of moments in meditation. Like after thinking about it a bit, I'm imagining people floating in a pool, watching reflections on water, or water's light reflected on the complex patterned roof, until they swishy-transition into the world of town. So things could disappear and appear like mirages rippling into existence, but with all the gold and pomp of a posh temple, or simple old wood of a shrine. I'm also imagining you summoning god-form mirages of people, reflecting their demons or pride or something, like them all dressed up in formal gold clothes, with some kind of strange abilities and exaggerated personalities, either so they can defeat them, or even so that they can help people, lots of options really.

You can have quite a lot of fun with materialise, if you really get into it, because at arc value 3, it's particularly suited to moments where you resolve issues: Because of your theme of freedom and moving past restrictions, you can basically always excuse manifesting something based on whatever personal revelation kicked off resolving the issue, which could reasonably mean manifesting any of the weird magical items of the buddhist cannon, like magic carpets, perfectly sharp swords, strange messenger animals, or memory enhancing/restoring relics. Not quite as good as evocative transformation for doing things during action moments, because of the general assumption of sustained action with a mundane action, except that you that's probably just going to inspire an obstacle, which could be fine if you have the appropriate bond. Still though, something to watch out for is that the manifestation defines the idea that something now exists, and you'll want to have some satisfying mundane action that represents bringing it into being, or a good excuse for a montage interlude while you finish it, at the resolution of your personal struggle.

Honestly, even if it isn't as tactically useful as some of the other candidates for spending your issue-resolution MP, it's still pretty cool to have your character build up a store of objects and things representing their personal growth. Like sickness? Resolve the issue by externalising it. Isolation? Create something that allows you to contact someone, or do something useful in collaboration with them, or just represents how they helped you. Then once these things are made, they are still just there, with a helpfulness or usefulness appropriate to the mundane action involved in their creation.
 

Yuki Akuma

New member
@.@

I... think I understood all that. So I should be externalising the things that hold people back from true freedom and enlightenment? That seems both incredibly broad and incredibly specific at the same time I'm not sure how you did that.

I do love the idea of using Materialize as a way to resolve some Issues. That's really thematic and neat.
 

Maxen M

Somewhere off to the side
Validated User
@.@

I... think I understood all that. So I should be externalising the things that hold people back from true freedom and enlightenment? That seems both incredibly broad and incredibly specific at the same time I'm not sure how you did that.
Yeah that'd work, broad but specific is the name of the game for chuubo's I find.

As to how, trying something different but similar to your problem is often pretty good way to get a feel for it. Also awakening is one of the harder arcs just because it's so explicitly abstract, (prophet is probably the hardest one for me, maybe Ace is the easiest? Don't really need to do anything for that one) but Jenna provided a nice unifying structure in the fact that your character is going to be materialising and dematerialising anyway, or at least appearing and disappearing, so you can tie a lot of stuff to how that activity specifically works for your character.

If past is any judge, this'll probably only help for the first draft, as you'll work out something about what you really wanted to do that my version won't help with at all, but still, hopefully enough for the start of a character. Put much thought into "deepen the mystery" yet?
 

Yuki Akuma

New member
Yeah that'd work, broad but specific is the name of the game for chuubo's I find.

As to how, trying something different but similar to your problem is often pretty good way to get a feel for it. Also awakening is one of the harder arcs just because it's so explicitly abstract, (prophet is probably the hardest one for me, maybe Ace is the easiest? Don't really need to do anything for that one) but Jenna provided a nice unifying structure in the fact that your character is going to be materialising and dematerialising anyway, or at least appearing and disappearing, so you can tie a lot of stuff to how that activity specifically works for your character.

If past is any judge, this'll probably only help for the first draft, as you'll work out something about what you really wanted to do that my version won't help with at all, but still, hopefully enough for the start of a character. Put much thought into "deepen the mystery" yet?
For Deepen the Mystery, I'm imagining the effect on the area is something along the lines of making it more peaceful and 'freeing' - the feeling that you can do anything and no one will judge you for it.

The specific Properties I'm thinking of are something like this:

  • The higher you climb, the closer you come to enlightenment.
  • The closer you get to enlightenment, the higher you climb.
  • You can only fall if you give up.
  • Enlightenment is Freedom.
  • Confinement is a Sin.
  • You can be taught to let go.
  • Reflections show what could be rather than what is.

I'm not totally sure about that last one. It's meant to tie into the whole pool of enlightenment dealie.

As for how the character does it, I'm picturing some sort of meditation where she actively spreads her aura/spirit outside of her body to infest the world around her.
 

Maxen M

Somewhere off to the side
Validated User
That could probably work, the pair of complementary properties for the first two are interesting, that you could probably treat them as a single one strikes me in this case as an encouragement to have both of them rather than a discouragement, because the flow is quite nice.

Maybe something about people not being judged, like "judgement is only ignorance" or something? In that vein I'd be inclined to change the one about confinement to be about enabling people to break it, or something, rather than saying it's wrong, just so that it doesn't seem to contradict the lack of judgement.

I think the reflections can still work even in a context where you don't have a pool, if you deepen the mystery on a building with windows, say, like maybe people scale the outside, or climb the inside of a tower? Could have a property that helps stretch things vertically too..
 
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