Ability Aptitude and similar merits
Merits that reduce the difficulty of an ability roll (such as Ability Aptitude) do not apply to supernatural powers using that ability roll, unless the merit specifically says that it does. Merely being classified as a supernatural merit' or similar is insufficient.
- Exception: Ability Aptitude in Rituals applies to level 1 and 2 rites, but not to higher levels.
- Ability Aptitude also does not apply to combat (as usual).
- House rule for Ability Aptitude specifically: May be taken up to twice per PC.
- A demon uses Lore of the Forge (Perception + Crafts) to improve a car. If the demon has Ability Aptitude: Crafts, then it doesn't apply in that situation.
- The above demon succeeded anyway, the car now gives -1 difficulty to Drive rolls. A ratkin steals the car and gets into a high-speed chase (Dexterity or Wits + Drive). If the ratkin has Ability Aptitude: Drive, then it does apply, and stacks with the car's bonus. (It's not affecting a power, just the side effect of a power.)
- A mage has the Natural Channel merit, which includes "difficulty to use magic to pierce the Gauntlet is one less". This applies as stated.
- Acute Sense (VtM Revised page 296) says "This Merit can be combined with the Discipline Auspex to produce superhuman sensory acuity." This also applies as stated. In particular, Aura Perception (Auspex 2) is specifically visual, so Acute Vision applies to it.
- Awareness is not a power, it just detects powers, so Ability Aptitude: Awareness is allowed. However, Awareness is not consistently tied to any of the five senses like Auspex 2 is, so the Acute Sense merits don't apply to Awareness.
See also Character Generation
- All requests to add stats to CGen must include book references.
- Willpower cannot exceed 8 in cgen.
- Willpower is always 1 freebie.
- Abilities over 3 do not require justification.
- Abilities can only be raised over 3 with freebies.
- Resources 3 and below do not require justification.
- Merits do not need to be purchased with Freebies from flaws. They may be purchased with standard 15/21 freebies.
- Potent Blood is not available to Shifters (they already provide more blood, if you manage to not have them kill you).
- Special combat maneuver stats (Kailindo, Do, Fast-Draw, etc) are not in use.
- Awareness is available to all races.
- Magic Resistance is not an appropriate merit for Mages.
- Kinfolk may purchase Gnosis merit, but only Kinfolk-specific Gifts.
- The Gnosis merit is required for Kinfolk-specific Gifts.
- Kinfolk, Kinain, and Ghouls that are also Sorcerer-Psychic must be Subrace:Sorcerer-Psychic and purchase Kinfolk (Merit):4 and/or Kinain:4 merits.
- Kinfolk may not have both Gnosis and Numina.
- It is recommended (but not required) that Ghoul PCs have an off-stage, statless NPC domitor.
- The Totem merit is not used, as it is sufficiently and more flexibly covered by backgrounds (e.g. Totem, Mentor, Guide).
- Sorcerer-Psychics get one free ritual for each dot of a Path that features rituals as described under Mythic Numina, WW4254/46.
- We do not differentiate between Mythic, Technological, and Psychic Numina.
- The free ritual is restricted to the Path providing the dot.
- The free rituals are at character creation only.
- All Faction:Wyrm shifters get Power, Cunning, and Infamy for renown.
- Ratkin: The bonus rite (and bonus rite only) can be used without having Rituals.
- Assamites may choose to take their caste weakness (WW2359/46-48) instead of the standard clan weakness, but must get a +note approved before it becomes relevant.
- Gangrel Mixed Blessing (WW23252/56) are not in use.
- Vampires with Thaumaturgy or other blood magic get one free ritual at each level up to their discipline level.
Having a dot in an ability means that you have a skill, talent, or knowledge that not everyone has.
In the U.S., just about everyone can drive a car, so we don't require a dot in Drive to be able to drive. This goes for both automatic and manual transmission vehicles and anything that doesn't require a special license, including rentable moving trucks.
Some things that will require Drive:
- A motorcyle (Drive 1 is sufficient)
- A finicky or poorly-maintained manual transmission
- A tractor-trailer, RV, or industrial vehicle (Garbage truck, dump truck, tow truck)
- Tailing someone without being noticed at normal speeds
- Tailing someone blatantly at high speeds
- Evading pursuit
- Excessive speed (>100 MPH)
Influence uses the categories from Laws of the Night 96-104, documented using +notes:
- High Society
PCs can +request to use Influence for the types of actions listed, based on a monthly cap. Example: A PC with Influence (Bureaucracy) 2 could pull strings to acquire one fake driver's license per month, or trace two utility bills per month.
Some actions may have broad long-term effects, e.g. a PC with Influence (Political) 4 gets the city council to alter the laws against vandalism. Staff will maintain a central list of such effects and take them into account when relevant.
Each PC may have a total of up to 5 dots in Influence, allocated to as many or few categories as desired (e.g. Underworld 5, or Underworld 3 + Media 2, but not Underworld 5 + Media 5; for that, you need two PCs working together).
Prospect is a city of millions and all those people have to be somewhere. Everywhere you go, there will be citizens doing their things. What follows are guidelines to determine whether or not there are people at your location:
- If you're in the Deep Forest, Desert, or Deep Ocean, '+dice 1'. If you get 1, there's at least one person somewhere nearby. If you get anything else, there's no one around (probably).
- If you're in a private space behind a locked door, there's no one around (probably).
- If your location is not in the above list, there are people around. This includes alleys (bums), parks (joggers, dog walkers, rapists), and the beach (more rapists).
Furthermore, if you're in a place that would reasonably be crowded such as a club, it is crowded. Crowds make it difficult to hear people, notice people, and find people. If there would reasonably be loud music playing, there is loud music playing.
If you're in a PC-owned location, and do something that would reasonably cause a NPC working there to notice and tell that PC about it, then please OOCly contact that PC and let them know.
- 'ex here' will tell you who owns the location (OOCly and usually also ICly).
- Non-exhaustive list of causes:
- Getting into a physical confrontation.
- Breaking the law (e.g. smoking or naked table-dancing in a family restaurant).
- Doing something overtly supernatural (e.g. shifting to Crinos).
- Many NPCs will run away if threatened, and are affected by Delirium etc. as usual, but there are exceptions (e.g. ghoul retainers). Some NPCs / PCs won't care if you smoke / whatever, others will be concerned about being reported (possibly by another PC) and shut down. Run it by the PC just in case.
Players with the secondary talent Instruction may teach abilities to other players for an XP discount:
- This only applies to the teacher's skills and knowledges, not talents (but see house rules below) or supernatural powers (which may have separate rules, e.g. vampire disciplines).
- This does not apply to the student raising the target ability higher than the teacher's level in that ability.
- Requires at least a one-month teaching period per teacher / student / target ability.
- At the start of the month, teacher submits a +request.
- During the month, teacher rolls Manipulation + Instruction vs (11 - student's Intelligence).
- At the end of the month, student becomes eligible for a discount of 1 XP per success on the target ability.
- House rules:
- Student must pay a minimum of 1 XP per level of the target ability.
- For each additional one-month teaching period with the same teacher and/or student and at least two weeks of simultaneous overlap, the Instruction roll is +1 difficulty.
- Talents with a major physical component can benefit from Instruction. (Primaries: Athletics, Brawl, Dodge, Intimidation. Secondaries: Flight, Juggling, Swimming, Throwing.)
- If the teacher spends Willpower on the Instruction roll, then they cannot spend Willpower on anything else for one month afterward. Remember that this roll represents a month's worth of sustained effort.
- Playing out teaching on-camera is optional and eligible for +votes / XP nominations as usual.
- Vampire Players Guide (2nd ed) page 28 (or 23)
- Wraith Players Guide page 41
- Book of Shadows page 16
Jack of All Trades
We use the 3-dot version of this merit from Players Guide to Garou 163:
"You have a little knowledge about a lot of things. If making a roll on a Skill you do not possess, you do not suffer the usual +1 penalty to the roll's difficulty. You may attempt a roll on a Knowledge that you do not possess, although the difficulty on the roll is raised by 2. Only homid or metis characters may take this Merit."
- Any race may take this merit, it is not restricted to Garou or even shifters.
- Fera are similarly restricted by breed.
- Does not apply to abilities not normally available to your race (e.g. Lore, Gremayre).
- Does not apply to secondary abilities.
The term "kryptonite" is used here as shorthand for "race-specific weakness that causes aggrevated damage or significant disablement for a character because of their race/subrace". Examples include:
- Silver for Werewolves
- Cold Iron for Changelings
- Sunlight, Stakes for Vampires
- Gold for Corax
- Reference Book Organization for White Wolf Editors
Kryptonite weapons are not trivial to acquire. While the materials themselves (silver) might be very common, the purity and quality of weapons/ammunition made of these materials is rarely such that supplies the desired agg. Kryptonite to be used on NPCs in a PRP may be handwaved by the player running the PRP. Kryptonite to be used on PCs must be requested and approved by staff ("Kryptonite:Y" in +equip), and is subject to risk protection as usual.
For RP purposes, most of these materials as found in everyday items will have little effect on PCs. Players are encouraged to play out some level of trepidation and discomfort handling common kryptonite items and have reactions up to severe rashes from handling them, if desired. Changelings are free to use an iron railing to climb stairs. Werewolves can pick up a silver locket (but shouldn't wear it). Vampires are still incinerated by sunlight; sorry, there is no depleted sunlight.
Supernaturals have relatively few weaknesses and as such, they take those weaknesses very seriously. Brandishing Kryptonite at a PC in a threatening manner, in combat, automatically promotes the wielder to Risk Level 3 for the duration of combat. This is regardless of either player's level of sphere-specific Lore. For this to be the case, however, the kryptonite must be the appropriate type for the character's real race. If you're a Gangrel posing miraculously well as a werewolf and someone pulls a silver dagger on you, they aren't automatically promoted to Risk Level 3.
For vampires, holy water, garlic, and crosses are not considered Kryptonite, but stakes and fire are. Fire is not considered Kryptonite for anyone else.
- We don't do per-language skill levels. A language is at 0 or it is at 5.
- The number of languages you get per level of linguistics is by the books.
- Your native language is free.
- English (everyone)
- Garou, Lupine (Garou); similar for Fera
- Enochian (demons)
- Inanimica (Inanimae)
|Linguistics||Number of extra languages|
- Once you've reached Linguistics 5, additional languages can be purchased for 3 XP each.
For evocations performed by demons, see Lores instead.
- Lores are counted as primary Knowledges and can be purchased with XP.
- At Lore 0, your character can believe, but your knowledge is inaccurate and mostly derived from popular culture.
The following types qualify for free Lore in chargen. Characters can qualify for multiple lores.
If you choose to start with a lower value (including 0), or your race or sub-race changes after chargen or you buy a relevant merit (e.g. someone ghouls you):
- You can get the first dot for free at any time, additional dots cost XP as usual.
- You can still choose to RP through the learning process.
- Someone (PC or NPC) will probably make an effort to teach you that first dot sooner or later, and you may draw ICC for not having it. (+policy village idiot)
- If you have Twisted Upbringing flaw, it does not need to be bought off first. (There are many other things that you could have been misled about.)
Maelstrom (aka Week of Nightmares)
The Sixth Great Maelstrom, aka the Week of Nightmares, was a major canon event that forever changed the world. It marked the entrance of Demons to the world, but it also screwed up the Umbra something fierce (something about the Technocracy using spirit nukes).
We like having Demons loose in the world, it lets us have them as playable characters here. We do not like the Avatar Storm, it excessively limits certain mages. Thus, we've chosen a compromise: it happened, but most of the Umbral problems ended years ago.
- Demons are playable characters
- Wraiths are playable characters
- Ravnos are playable characters
- Mages can cross the Gauntlet to/from the Umbra without taking damage
- Mages still cannot cross the Horizon to/from the Deep Umbra
In mid-July 1999, after a week of psychic backlash that drove most Ravnos insane, the Ravnos Antediluvian rose and began wreaking havoc in India. It was finally put down in Bangladesh by the combined might of (a) three high-Dharma Kuei-Jin and (b) the Technocracy's 'Do Not Open until the Apocalypse' toybox.
The spirit nukes in said toybox cracked the Abyssal prison that the Fallen were trapped in, as well as causing the Sixth Great Maelstrom to sweep through the Underworld. A side effect was the Avatar Storm, a poisoning of the Gauntlet that would flay the Avatar of any Mage trying to cross it. It also wreaked havoc on the Horizon, making trips into the Deep Umbra even more difficult and dangerous than they already were, and trips back nearly impossible, cutting off Earth from contact with most of the high-Arete Mages, who had long since retreated Outside to escape the crushing weight of Paradox.
Another effect was the death of nearly all of Clan Ravnos. By the end of the Week of Nightmares, there were less than 100 left, mostly Ancillae and Neonates. Clan Ravnos is now effectively a Bloodline.
By 2012, things had settled down somewhat:
- Ravnos PCs are available, per our standard rules for PCs (no lower than 8th Generation). They can't really be considered a true Clan anymore without an Antediluvian or any Methuselahs, so consider them a Bloodline (this isn't really a mechanical effect, just a roleplay thing).
- The Avatar Storm ended years ago. How exactly it ended is a mystery. Rumors include: It simply burned itself out. It was repaired by the Traditions. It was repaired by the Technocracy. It was repaired by an unprecedented cooperative effort of Dreamspeakers, Void Engineers, Corax, and Nuwisha. The upshot is, it's gone, everyone has their own theory of why, and nobody knows for certain. You do not take agg damage when you use Spirit/DimSci to Step Sideways through the Gauntlet/Barrier.
- The Horizon, however, is still damaged. The Deep Umbra is still difficult and dangerous to access. Many of Earth's mightiest mages are still out of contact.
- Fallen (Demons) are still trickling out of the crack in the Abyss and claiming mortal bodies, per their canon. Nothing has changed there.
- The Underworld/Shadowlands are all kinds of messed up, but not nearly so bad as in canon. Thus you can still play Wraith PCs, see 'news wraith' for more details.
- There is no Red Star. The End of the World forgot to happen. Maybe the destruction of Ravnos forestalled it.
Medium (2 point Merit)
(VtM page 300) You possess the natural ability to sense and hear spirits, ghosts, and shades. Though you cannot see them, you can sense them, speak to them and, through pleading or cajoling, draw them to your presence. You may call on them for aid or advice, but there will always be a price.
(MtA page 295) Your mage is a natural conduit to the Underworld. Although this Merit does not reduce the difficulty of working Spirit magic, it does mean that your mage can hear ghosts naturally. The mage might not see wraiths without the right magic, but they do tend to hang out, talk, bug the character and ask him to do things. This talent can be helpful in some cases; wraiths are eager to talk to those who can hear them. However, they often make demands, and they can be difficult to banish if the mage doesn't have enough power with Spirit.
Clarifications / house rules:
- This allows '+rsee wraith', but not '+rsee fae' or '+rsee umbra'.
- This only lets you hear wraiths, not (ICly) see them.
No Free Lunch
This rule covers using a supernatural effect to permanently alter a stat that normally costs XP (including removing/decreasing a flaw, Torment, etc.).
Target may pay the normal XP cost, handwaving the effect as IC justification.
- This does not require rolls, or even canonical game mechanics.
- Example: Using Vicissitude to justify gaining the Winged merit.
Target may pay half the normal XP cost (rounded up) if:
- The effect has canonical game mechanics for such an increase.
- The caster succeeds at those game mechanics.
- Example: Using Lore of Flesh 5 (Shape Flesh) to increase physical attributes.
Target may benefit without spending XP if:
- The effect has canonical game mechanics for such an increase.
- The caster succeeds at those game mechanics.
- The effect has some other type of permanent or ongoing cost.
- Example: Using Vicissitude 2 (Fleshcraft) to increase soak dice, at the expense of decreasing Strength or health levels.
- Example: Using Life/Mind to increase physical/mental attributes, at the expense of the caster suffering rote strain and possibly increased Paradox.
Here we define 'sniping' to be the use of special abilities or items to discern information about another character. Specific examples include (but are not limited to):
- Aura Perception
- Sense Wyrm/Weaver/Wyld
- Scent of the True Form
Using these abilities requires at a minimum concentration, if not overt actions such as staring, making hand gestures, or licking the subject.
While we may only have a few dozen players logged in a time, Prospect itself is a city of millions. As such, sniping any but the most obvious supers would be exhausting work; you'd get nothing else done. Sniping therefore requires a clear and specific reason to be used on a character, PC or otherwise.
A PC must have done something significant to warrant being sniped:
- A PC violating the territory of another race/faction may be sniped at any time
- A PC using a supernatural power must offer the detection roll (if any) specified by that power, as well as a passive Awareness roll (+rules awareness)
- A PC mundanely reacting to a supernatural weakness (e.g. running from fire) is not sufficient cause for sniping unless the sniper has the relevant sphere's lore at 3+
For example, Willy the Werewolf sees Bob back away from a silver blade nervously. Willy the Werewolf suspects Bob is a BSD. Willy has Lore Garou at 3 and is justified in using Sense Wyrm. Turns out Willy senses no obvious Wyrm signs in the area. To figure out what's up, he uses Scent of the True Form on Bob. Bob happens to be a Mage. Willy sees that Bob isn't a Werewolf at all, he's something else. However, because he doesn't have any dots in Lore Mage, he doesn't know what he's looking at.
If Bob doesn't think he's been presented with sufficient justification for being sniped, he may refuse.
For each attribute and ability with 4 or more dots, you may select one specialty.
- Specialties do not apply to combat, nor to supernatural powers.
- Exception: A specialty in Rituals applies to level 1 and 2 rites, but not to higher levels.
- Other things reusing the 10-again game mechanics (e.g. Legendary Attribute merit) may apply to either/both of these things.
- Specialties must be documented in +notes and approved by staff. The main rulebooks contain several suggestions.
- Specialties must be clearly limited to a subset of all possible rolls involving the attribute or ability. The book suggestions for attributes tend to be bad about this.
- If a stat is temporarily/semi-permanently/conditionally raised to 4+, it may have a specialty that applies while the raise applies.
- Examples: +effects from +shift forms or other sources, changeling birthrights while in the Dreaming
- Players should do '&VERBOSE_ROLLS me=1' to see how many 10s to re-roll. This also affects rolls shown to you by others.
- Any 10s in the original roll are re-rolled (before 1s canceling).
- Any 10s in the re-roll are re-rolled again.
- Any 1s in the re-roll cancel successes on a 1:1 basis as usual.
(References: VtM 117, WtA 108, MtA 117, CtD 136, DtF 136, WtO 112. Canon rules are not quite consistent; house rules are mainly based on MtA/DtF. Single-sphere PRPs may stick to that sphere's canon rules if everyone in the scene agrees.)
Spirit Sight (4 point Merit, The Spirit Ways page 105)
You can see and hear all varieties of spirits, changelings, wraiths and similar entities. This Merit provides all of the advantages granted by the Merit Medium (The Book of Shadows, page 36). Like the Medium Merit, Spirit Sight reduces the difficulties of all Spirit magic by two. Nevertheless, this ability is a mixed blessing. Seeing these beings is not a choice; it is a normal part of your vision. You cannot help but see them. Being yelled at by an irate wraith who is shaking her fist in your face can be extremely distracting if you are attempting to hold a conversation with a Sleeper, and it's even worse if you are driving a car in bad weather!
Many shamans have this Merit, and shamans often look for people with Spirit Sight as potential students. Unfortunately, most Sleepers with this Merit conceal it poorly and instead end up in asylums.
Clarifications / house rules:
- You should '+rsee fae', '+rsee umbra', and '+rsee wraith', and leave them that way.
- PCs are not 'most people', but neither are they perfect. You should RP the distraction and confusion of this merit from time to time, though it doesn't need to be crippling, nor obvious to your potential enemies. Storytellers may increase the difficulty of your rolls from time to time.
- If you also have Dual Perception (2 point Merit), then you can turn each layer of vision on or off at will, but you need to ICly decide when to do so. You're trading off distraction/confusion for potentially missing something important.
- This only lets you see and hear things in other layers, not touch them or enter them. In particular, exits marked *FAE* lead to the Dreaming; this lets you see them, but does not (ICly) let you go through them.
- Immunity to the Mists is limited to seeing fae stuff in normalspace. If you're Enchanted and brought into the Dreaming, then the Mists still apply to that.
These rules cover multiple modifiers to the same thing.
- If something explicitly indicates that it can/can't stack with other things, then that applies as written. In particular, if a single chart lists multiple possible modifiers to the same thing, then those generally can stack.
- Otherwise, if the same thing would receive multiple bonuses, then only the best bonus per type applies. For penalties, only the worst penalty per type applies. In both cases, multiplication/division applies before addition/subtraction.
- For the purpose of this rule, 'types' are as follows:
- Mundane stat (background, merit, or flaw).
- Mundane item.
- Supernatural racial ability (e.g. vampire spending blood to raise attributes, shifter changing forms).
- Supernatural power (e.g. discipline, gift, totem).
- Supernatural item.
- This applies to any quantified game mechanic, e.g. number of dice, difficulty, number of successes, duration.
- For a dice pool including multiple stats, each stat counts as a separate target.
- Final difficulty is capped per '+rules difficulty'.
- A werewolf is wearing a flak jacket and kevlar vest, and casts Luna's Armor twice (3 and 2 successes). Their soak pool includes 4 from the jacket (but not 3 from the vest), and 3 from the first Luna's Armor (but not 2 from the second).
- A Tremere uses Spirit Manipulation to create a Fang Dagger, and also has Potence 2. The dagger bonus (*2) is applied before the Potence bonus (+2).
- A werewolf's Totem gives -1 difficulty to Perception and Alertness. If they roll Perception + Alertness, then both bonuses apply.
Supernatural powers cannot increase a stat above its normal maximum unless canon and/or this rule explicitly says so. Examples:
- Attributes, abilities, backgrounds, and virtues are capped at 5
- Willpower and Path Rating (Humanity) are capped at 10
Common examples of explicit exceptions:
- Vampires spending blood are limited based on Generation instead (VtM 138)
- Shifter forms can exceed attribute caps (WtA 107)
- Mages can exceed caps with Life or Mind, subject to Paradox and Pattern bleed (MtA 168, 171, 176)
- Changeling birthrights can exceed the changeling's caps.
- Demon apocalyptic forms can exceed the demon's caps.
Certain stats (usually backgrounds) are intended to represent a character's standing in their own society. These stats include but are not limited to: Status (Vampire), Pure Breed (Werewolf), Title (Changeling), and Eminence (Demon). These stats work well in table top where a storyteller is omniscient and can manage the implications. MUs are not such an environment.
Even in table top, Status only carries weight amongst those who respect it. The Brujah or Bone Gnawers with no status have no incentive to respect the status of others; they're unlikely to get any themselves so playing the status game is unlikely to pay off for them. In short, Status is something respected by those who have, or want to gain Status.
Those same Brujah and Bone Gnawers will, however, respect the authority of others within their sphere. Authority is delegated from the top down, not merely assumed. Authority can be assumed when there is no established structure, but assumed authority is not automatic; it must be defended, possibly through force.
Some Status stats can modify dice rolls. Those effects are by the book, regardless of the above interpretations.
- Equipment comes from WtA Revised (WW3801).
- Customized weapons can be requested, but are not automatic for approval.
- Combat rules come from the character's sphere respective book.
- For combat involving PCs from multiple spheres, see Combat.
- We do not use combat specialties.
- We do not use special combat maneuvers.
See XP Chart