Portage: Descent into Darkness

A WoD RPG based on Vampire the Masquerade V20
 
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 Setting and Character Creation

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PostSubject: Setting and Character Creation   Sun Apr 29, 2012 8:01 pm

Portage, a city historically built around the deep shelter of the harbour and the mouth of the river who empties into the basin. Once a major trading port, it grew over the years, morphing into a military base, strategically placed to shield the navy, as well as the fishing fleets. It seems a gifted land, the natural resources abound, from fisheries, farming and trapping, to more recently located natural gas reserves off shore. It is this sprawling metropolis that you call home, and in this sprawl, there are a myriad of choices unfolding before you. Portage is not only the bastion of growth and financial power in these modern nights, it is also a seat of power for the creatures that go bump in the night. While the continued expansion over the years have encroached, crushed and pushed back the Fae and Garou that once called these pristine waters home, in its place, the creatures of darkness and the night have filled in. Beneath the whitewashed glare of the neon lights, it seems a city alive with potential and beauty, but beneath her carefully painted facade, there is the decay and death that follows mankind where ever he deigns to lay his head.

It is a city of extremes, there is rampant poverty, and not just in the Northern Suburbs, larger then many cities across the country, has become the bastion for all that is wrong in the world. Drugs and death stalk its streets and those within its borders have become numbed and immune to the deprivations about them, but this is not to say that all is lost here. Likewise, Oakdale, the bastion of all that is perfect and what every man wants and strives for, is laced with a horrid undertone of death and rot, all carefully gilded over with wealth, passion and pleasure.

In all of this, there are the Kindred, the Cainite and the Anarchs, for how could there not be, the massive city cries out to be taken and used, and where there is fodder, there is the predator. From the Tower to the Sword, there is a battle being waged each night on the streets and in the board rooms of the city. Cunning, devious and creative, the immortals of the city wage their war of the ages, in careful strokes of restructuring, petitions, blackmail, corruption and murder. This undercurrent is the brighter reflection of the very things man finds it simple to do without the prompting of the Blood.

This is where you live, somewhere in this sprawling tangle of civilization, perhaps a small, quaint neighbourhood or on the mean streets, this is your world to paint and create. The world is open to your interpretation, your understanding of what moves and shakes about you and how you will find yourself, your goals and your unlife within the choices that unfold before you. The options are endless, and your movements will create opportunity or bind you to another, each decision shaping you and the world around you further.

The only question is... Who are you?

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PostSubject: Re: Setting and Character Creation   Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:17 pm

Due to the flexible nature of this game, each player has a choice upon starting. You can enter this game as Kindred, which is the typical and common way that most begin their games. In this, when you create your character, you must think of why they are in Portage, are they from this vast city, are they passing through, did their Sire send them, are they looking to create their own kingdom afresh, are they fleeing elsewhere? All of these will shape your character and how they discover the many treasures and traps of Portage. The more detailed your history, the more you provide the StoryTeller's with to create a tapestry about you.

It has been decided as well, that there are some that will wish to create from the very basics. It is also possible within this game to begin as Kine, mortal and unaware of the Jyhad that plays out in the very streets, boardrooms and governance of the city you call home. Through this, your mortal character will find themselves drawn into a torrent of the unknown, of death and destruction, of trial and testing as your choices shape who is drawn to your presence, who finds you worthy to Embrace and who becomes your progenitor in your new unlife. When creating your mortal character, take into account what clans you are interested in, and provide your preferences to the StoryTeller, from there, your own actions and choices as you go about your daily life will result in the Embrace of whomever you interest. You will be provided with options, choices and decisions, and each of these will come to shape your hearkening Embrace. You will find yourself hunted, an unnerving situation at best, and will find yourself descending into a darkness that your character may never have expected. This is World of Darkness, and your soul is on the line.

Once corrupted, the newly created Kindred will find themselves taught and brought into the folds of the Tower, or perhaps the Sword, one never knows, and will find themselves on a steep learning curve among the Courts of the Damned. From Kine to Kindred, this is not an easy path and is not for everyone, but it will provide you with the greatest learning experience and challenges, for you shall have humanity, and then you shall watch as it begins to slip through your fingers like water, leaving you with the true core of who you are beneath your own gilded facade of morality.
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PostSubject: Re: Setting and Character Creation   Tue Jun 05, 2012 2:25 am

There are positives and negatives to starting out as either mortal or Kindred, and it is up to you to weigh these differences in the decision of your character creation. The first and most simple to identify is that there is a different point distribution, the soul who has not yet begun his descent into the darkness is not as strong as the immortal, nor is he able to wield supernatural abilities. These skills are acquired at the moment of Embrace, and the player is able to apply the 'missing' points to their character as per how the character has developed, what clan has decided to bequeath the curse upon him and is a clear indication from the very moment he wakes from the tiny death, realizing that everything has indeed changed.

There are several other factors that should be taken into account before you decide how you will go about delving into the World of Darkness, please read all of these and be aware of the differences, risks and benefits found in each.

Kindred:
You are a neonate, perhaps moving into the realm of the Ancillae, or perhaps only just stepping out from beneath the wings of your Sire, finding your way among the deadly dance of the dead for the first time on your own. You know what it is to be Kindred or Cainite, you understand the politics that move about you and have an understanding that what you know is only the very beginning. You have had time to become accustomed to the change wrought upon you, and have gained a level of acceptance at the cursed state of your being, or even revel in it. You are known in your clan, maybe not famous, but they are aware of who you are, and you have some 'friends' within the ranks of those about you, but you get the distinct feeling that not all are as they appear to be. You are ready to start moving your hand, trying your skills at the intrigue, violence and carefully controlled chaos, and are just as much moved and shaped by the Elders above you. For who are you but all pawns to another.

This being said, you start with a standard character sheet, though receive four points toward Disciplines and an extra five free points. You have a wider base of backgrounds to choose from, and truly creative and detailed character sheets may result in extras being awarded. Beyond this, you have skills and abilities ahead of those only recently embraced, as you understand that you are in over your head and have an idea of what might really be going on.

Mortal:
You are blissfully unaware of just how dark the night is and what sort of things really lurk in the streets when the sun goes down. Perhaps you are a teacher, a business man, a university student or a retired astro-physicist. You live a normal life, or what passes as normal and thus the normal things in the world can affect you. If you fall, you may break something, if you jump off a building, you will die, if you get into a fight, you may end up disfigured. Your actions affect you and you have no supernatural ability to heal and recover. You will get sick, you will need time to recover. If you get in a car accident and are paralyzed, you may find your waiting Sire sees no reason why a crippled Kindred should be a problem, and you may enter your unlife, eternally in a wheelchair. You must remember, you are mortal, and what affects you is purely without any supernatural influence, so reckless actions begat reckless results. Once embraced, you are thrust into a world you had no idea existed, you are going to need to learn quickly, are far more gullible and open to exploit, and are at a loss to understand what is happening about you. You will have only what your Sire offers you, and even then, once you have made your Accounting, you may find you are starting utterly from scratch if you have relied on his mercy. Creativity will be needed to figure out just how you are going to survive the long nights ahead.

Beyond this though, there are positives, while you start off with a 'weaker' sheet, you will find yourself on equal footing with other neonates, for the supernatural infusion of your Sire's blood will strengthen you, change you and open up the supernatural world to you. Upon your Embrace, the 'missing' points from your sheet are awarded and can be added, however think on where these points are placed and give reason, it is not a free-for-all in which you become a sudden powerhouse, but what legitimately would be strengthened or increased by your induction into the Blood. As well, you will find some Backgrounds are offered to you, you gain a Mentor in the form of your Sire, though depending on who he is, will shape how much of a benefit or even harm this could be, you may find yourself graced with riches, or you may find that you no longer have access to the millions of your family's fortunes. Depending on the choices you have made and who your sire is, you will have your Backgrounds added to, edited and reduced, recreating the new life for you. The Embrace is harsh, cruel and demanding, even if you had an easy life as a mortal, you may no longer have this.

One key difference between starting as a Kindred versus a Mortal is Generation. Generation can be bought as a Kindred starting out, but this does cost, and may come at the expense of other abilities. Remember, Generation is not everything, being 8th Gen but unable to sneak up on someone or wield a gun or even sword may bring about your fall to one of a 10th or 11th Generation. Being embraced in the game however, means that you have little to no control over your Generation, however remember that it is the powerful Elders that typically have right to create a Childe, and while this does not mean you will find yourself Embraced by a Methusala, you are also not going to be embraced by those teetering into the edge of thin blood. Typically you will end up between 9th and 11th Generation, and possibly even 8th. You will never be anything beyond 11th though, and you do not have to spend any experience or free points on this background, it is applied freely upon time of embrace.


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PostSubject: Re: Setting and Character Creation   Tue Jun 05, 2012 6:45 am

In a simple break down, the following is applied to either character:

Kindred:
Attributes: 7/5/3 with a starting single dot in each.
Abilities: 13/9/5
Lores: As per character history and discussion with ST, max of three.
Backgrounds: 5
Disciplines: 4
Virtues: 7 with a starting single dot in Humanity, Self Control and Courage.
Merits: At the ST's discretion, indicate how they fit into your background and why your character has this merit.
Flaws: Max of 7 points worth, but indicate how they fit into your background and why your character has this flaw.
Freebee points: 20
-Knows at least two Kindred in the city, has an understanding of the court and will be provided with two 'bonuses' upon completion of a detailed character history.

Mortal:
Attributes: 5/4/3
Abilities: 10/7/3
Lores: May have a single point of Lore in the areas of Fae, Mage or Wraiths, subject to ST approval, 2 is possible, however people will typically view you as insane, odd, or otherwise crazy for your strange beliefs and time spent studying them. Remember, the knowledge available to you is mostly anecdotal and there are few texts or individuals about to teach you, thus Lores require a certain active dedication to them.
Backgrounds: 5, may save 3 points for after Embrace to use, limited choices until Embraced.
Disciplines: 3-4 available upon Embrace, will be tied to roleplay experience
Virtues: 8, and the end result in Humanity MUST be a minimum of 7.
Merits: As many as you wish, however they must be 'mortal' types and be approved by the ST
Flaws: 4 points as noted in character history, more may be granted upon Embrace
Freebee points: 10, with 5 more to be added upon Embrace.
-Upon embrace, receives automatic Generation, Mentor (minimum of 1 point) and possibly one other Background/immediate opportunities to develop backgrounds. Also adds 2/1/0 to Attributes and 3/2/2 to Abilities.
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