Mirrors, Monsters, and Misfits
The power possessed by a character
Health is a number of boxes equal to (Stamina + Size)
This can change if Stamina or Size change, or by other supernatural influences.
Health can be damaged by Bashing (B), Lethal (L), or Aggravated (A) damage.
Bashing damage is bruising, fatigue, or stun. Overflow of Bashing damage becomes Lethal.
Lethal damage is piercing, breaking, or the like. Overflow of Lethal damage becomes Aggravated.
Aggravated damage is rending, explosive, or otherwise massive loss of body parts.
Healing wounds can be done with (Dexterity + Medicine) or (Intelligence + Medicine).
Either can be rolled for a first-aid check, to stop bleeding and stabilize the patient on site.
(Intellgence + Medicine) is rolled for long term care. This may heal one extra Bashing damage (if any) per day, as a bonus.
Around-the-clock intensive care reduces injuries by one degree.
Otherwise, the patient must heal themselves, normally.
Natural healing for humans is…
… 15 minutes to recover 1B.
… 2 days to recover 1L.
… 1 week to recover 1A.
Natural healing for Therians (Garou and Fera, etc, in all forms) is…
… 1 turn to recover 1B.
… 15 minutes to recover 1L.
… 1 week to recover 1A.
Additionally, Therians may spend one point of Essence reflexively to heal 1L in a turn. Vampires and some other supernaturals have similar abilities. Many supernaturals are able to heal with various powers, as well.
Base dots is (Resolve + Composure)
Most people will start off around 4 or 5, and that’s fine.
Willpower is not rolled, but spent to focus on achieving goals or resisting impulses.
Willpower can be spent…
… adding +3 dice to a rolled action.
… (optionally) gaining one automatic success on an action, particularly for resisting troublesome influences.
… adding +2 to Defense, Stamina, Resolve, or Composure.
Willpower can be regained…
… one per Scene by playing appropriate to your Vice in a difficult situation.
… entirely per Session by playing appropriate to your Virtue in difficult situations.
… one per full night of rest or relaxation.
… one for achieving a significant personal goal.
… entirely at the end of a Story.
… optionally under other circumstances.
Essence is the supernatural power generated by the flow of Umbral Resonance. It is sometimes also called Chi.
(Don’t get too caught up in the precise definition. The main idea is that Essence is a flowing, living energy, not a crystalline or distilled one.)
Essence is tied to your Feral Heart/Primal Urge.
Primal Urge 1: 10 max Essence, 1 Essence per turn, -1 Social penalty (0 for Fera)
Primal Urge 2: 11 max Essence, 1 Essence per turn, -1 Social penalty (0 for Fera)
Primal Urge 3: 12 max Essence, 2 Essence per turn, -2 Social penalty (-1 for Fera)
Primal Urge 4: 13 max Essence, 2 Essence per turn, -2 Social penalty (-1 for Fera)
Primal Urge 5: 14 max Essence, 3 Essence per turn, -3 Social penalty (-2 for Fera)
Fera reduce their Social Penalty by one – they’re unearthly and at some level disturbing to mortals, but the manner of their social curse is less than that of Garou.
Essence may be spent to…
… activate a Gift.
… activate a Fetish.
… enter the Umbra without a roll, in the presence of a Locus.
… reflexively shapeshift without a roll.
… reflexively regenerate 1L of wound.
Essence may be recovered by…
… 1 to 3 points in downtime between stories.
… 1 point upon seeing your Auspice moon the first time in a night.
… drawing points from a Locus.
… performing certain Rites, alone or as a pack.
… running wild in areas of nature, power, or significance.
… eating the flesh of humans or your spirit animal, which is a grave sin.
Essence may be stored and transported in a Touchstone.
(More to come on Totems)
This is the magical power used by Magi.
This is the source of power for Vampires.
Supernaturals, Stats, and Dice Pools
Please note: our protagonist characters most likely don’t know all of this yet. This information about the workings of our World of Darkness is all present and hiding in the wings, awaiting discovery. I’m adding it here as a handy reference for guest-Storytellers and as we all learn the rules together. -simon
Resistance – Supernatural powers are usually resisted by a resistance Attribute plus the appropriate “power stat”. For example, a mortal might resist influence with Composure, while a Garou would resist the same influence with Composure+Primal Urge.
Essence – Essence is the power of Resonance between the spiritual and physical worlds. It is dynamic and seeks always to flow. Essence can be harvested from a Locus, at a rate of 3 points of Essence per day, per dot of Locus. It can be stored into an object, called a Touchstone. A Touchstone can typically store three to five points of Essence, but the flowing nature of Essence causes it to bleed away at a rate of one point per day.
Essence almost always has a Resonance. It is only very rarely neutral.
A Locus is also a place of power for Spirits. A Spirit may hide in a Locus, or consume the Essence generated by it. Therians are quite jealous of their Loci, protecting them both from others of their kind and from opportunistic Spirits. Magi sometimes may seek access to a Locus, to make use of its power in drawing and dealing with Spirits.
A Verge is a place where the Gauntlet is weak or non-existent. This makes it easier to step-sideways into the Penumbra. A Verge may or may not overlap with a Locus. Therians with such an overlapping place of power in their territory would be very fortunate, but also most likely very busy dealing with visitors from both sides of the Gauntlet.
There are many other Umbral features to appear, as we go along.
Mana – Mana is the power drawn from the Supernal World (realms of great mystery and power to which Magi are drawn. Mana brings along the rules of the Supernal, changing briefly the way the world works. Mana may be harvested from a Hallow, at a rate of 1 point of Mana per day, per dot of Hallow. Mana need not be stored in an object. It will pool as Tass in the area of the Hallow if it is not harvested. Tass does not bleed away.
Mana and Tass may have a Resonance, but it is much more common that they be neutral or weakly Resonant.
A Hallow is a sacred place for Magi, in which Mana pools. Hallows tend to be (but are not always) in high places close to the sky. Thus, the legends of Magi in their wizard’s towers. Magic cast in a Hallow reduces any Mana cost by one point.
A Demesne is another type of sacred place for Magi. In a Demesne, all of their magics are considered covert, meaning that Paradox is not risked in casting.
A Demesne may or may not overlap with a Hallow. Fortunate is the Mage who has such a place.
Blood Pool – Blood Pool is the quantity of Vitae currently held in the dead veins of a Vampire. As Vampirism is a curse, there is no naturally occurring place of power associated with Vitae. Such a place would certainly be horrific to discover or contemplate.
Vampires need go no further than the nearest mortal to replenish their Blood Pool, however. The Kiss – the Vampire’s bite – is intensely pleasurable and most victims don’t resist at all. Draining one Vitae from a victim inflicts 1L of damage, leaving them tired and listless until it heals.
Rising every night costs the Vampire 1 Vitae. Simulating life, augmenting Attributes with Disciplines (Vampiric magic) or using other blood-fueled powers typically costs Vitae as well. No other supernatural type spends power just to get going.
The blood of Therians is extremely potent. A Vampire drawing Vitae from one gains 2.5 Vitae per 1L of damage (rounded down), so for example would gain 5 Vitae by inflicting 2L of damage.
The blood of Magi is that of mortals, but Vampires consuming it are subject to visions and hallucinations, which they find an unpleasant reminder how many mysteries of the world forever elude them.
The blood of lesser creatures is less potent. Pets and vermin must be drained entirely in multitudes to feed a Vampire.
The wound left by the Kiss can be healed entirely, without scarring or any trace, simply by licking it when the Vampire is done.
Comparing Points If it comes up that we need to compare what a point of this or that represents, remember that all of these points are basically on the same scale. Some powers can convert one to the other.
Essence is like supernatural power in motion. Mana is like supernatural substance. Vitae is the measure of a curse.