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 The Philosopher's wall of text

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Feral
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PostSubject: The Philosopher's wall of text   Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:16 pm

Just to kindly remind you that wall of text you promised the forum on Old Clan Tzimisce.
Sorry I start new topic on it, couldn't find the original one.
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ThePhilosopher
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Tue Jan 28, 2014 2:12 pm

>_> the RP has been taking my wall of text resources
I'll do it, wait for it
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:03 pm

I shiver with expectation!

*shivers*
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Wed Jan 29, 2014 3:23 pm

Waiting...
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:55 pm

Alright faggots, I'm posting, fuck you all.

My problems with the Old Clan are threefold
1 - There's no need for their existence in the scenario
2 - Their existence causes a lot of plotholes and lore holes, taking away from the scenario and turning it into the clobbered mess that made White Wolf say "fuck it, we're flushing this and starting over".
3 - They are lacking their own personality.

I'll try to be concise.

First, what do I mean about the "need" for their existence? Do clans have to have a need to exist? Not necessarily, but imagine a WoD where there is only two clans, the "Fighter" clan and the "Mage" clan. Say what you want, but this setting is poor, even if it is simply in gameplay mechanics. As I said, clans do not need a "role" to fill in gameplay in order for them to exist, although it helps. A setting with enough clans to fill a "role" in regards to the group of PCs can be a poor setting, if the lore and story of said clans is poor.

In oWoD, we had enough clans to fill all the "roles", with enough lore and story behind them that it didn't looked like they were made simply for "Here, this is the fighter clan". oWoD also has many other clans that have no "role" per say but they flourish the scenario with their story and lore, the Setites for example. The main reason so many players claim that the oWoD has a better "soul" than nWod is precisely because of this flourishing. nWoD did the "here, x clan fits x role" and paid the price. oWoD went overboard and added a clusterfuck of clans that no one uses and just make the setting clustered. Did anyone here ever played as a Daughter of Cacophony? A Blood Brother?

What happens with the Old Clan is that not only do they have no need to exist gameplay-wise, they also have add nothing to the setting lore-wise. In fact, they take away from it.

The existence of the Old Clan creates various problems in regards to the WoD setting. The first one is that it breaks the estabilished lore of the Eldest powers. Whatever the version of the story one hears or reads, the Eldest has Vicissitude at the very begining, or is quickly moving towards the creation of the discipline. But the Old Clan is Old, Old as in "keeper of old ways", before the creation of the Sabbat. In the old ways, they affirm, there's no such thing as Vicissitude.

The first strike the existence of the Old Clan to the setting is not only ludicrous by itself, but it also ripples into many lore holes. And the patching up of some of those holes, or the attempt to, makes things even worse. I'm not sure if the whole "soul parasite" fiasco was created simply to try to justify the fact that the Old Clan makes no use of Vicissitude, while claiming to be traditional and conservative of the old ways, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was. In any case, it was used as the "official" reasoning as to why the Old Clan dealt not with the discipline, while anyone who knows shit of oWoD would agree to simply forget all this parasite fiasco.

Other plotholes follow: How did they keep the old ways if the Eldest was the creator of Vicissitude? How are they "old" if the Eldest used Vicissitude to pose as the Blood-Breaker?

The minor lore holes can be seen by everyone. It is pointless to make an exposition of every single one of them. But let's look at what the Old Clan adds to the scenario, from an artistic/gameplay mechanics point of view.

The problem with the Old Clan is not simply that they break away with Vicissitude or the Sabbat. Many antitribus and bloodlines break away from the main clan disciplines and/or sect, or are in direct opposition to them. The main problem with the Old Clan is that it does so poorly.

Vicissitude isn't simply a discipline born from the unique characteristics of Clan Tzimisce, as is Dementation or Protean. It is the craddle of their philosophy of existence. Each clan has a collective ideology (that they're not BOUND to) that affects them in one way or another, even if it's to deny it. The collective ideology of the Tzimisce Clan is one of transcendence. Some vampires relish themselves in their condition. Others try to maintain a modicum of humanity in their minds and actions. But only the Tzimisce want to dig deeper. To become "more vampire" than vampires, in a way. To remove this philosophy without attempting to deny it, fight against it, or substituting it with something else of worth, makes the act of removal pointless. Their own philosophy is so strong that it is solidified in the Path of Metamorphosis.

Imagine Clan Nosferatu. Now, a bloodline of said clan without one of their disciplines, or working for the sabbat/independent would still be "Nosferatu". But what if a bloodline hadn't had their curse? Much of the identity of the nosferatu as invididuals and a collective of individuals is shaped by the curse. The companionship, the need and proficiency of working in the shadows, the necessity of both hiding and accepting one's condition, all arguably stem from this curse. Could a bloodline of uncursed Nosferatu work? Yes, if done correctly. Likewise, the identity of the Tzimisce is, in a large part, affected by Vicissitude and it's bagagge. If done correctly, a non-fleshcrafting bloodline of the cland could work and be interesting. But the Old Clan does not "does it" correctly.

The REAL reason the Old Clan Tzimisce exists, I'm afraid, is very, very simple : to insert into the world a clan they can say "Hey, Dracula's from this clan!". The Old Clan has no personality on it's own, no good lore on it's own, it adds nothing to the scenario gameplay-wise or lore-wise and it damages the lore of the regular Clan Tzimisce with the "soul parasite" fiasco. That's why I think Old Clan should be one of those things everyone agrees to ignore it's existence, like that werewolf-mage-vampire or the Daughters of cacophony.

Here's a food for thought: If instead of Old Clan Tzimisce, these vampires were of a group or guild of Old Ventrues that didn't joined the Camarilla, would there be any change in the Old Clan's personality?
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Thu Jan 30, 2014 6:08 am

TL;DR Laughing 

I am not versed in Tzimisce lore and I thought your prosecution is weak based only on Vicissitude; I had to google "soul parasite" and I thought that everyone of WW had to smoke something wicked with Ivo A. Benda to come up with this "alien invasion."

ThePhilosopher wrote:
Here's a food for thought: If instead of Old Clan Tzimisce, these vampires were of a group or guild of Old Ventrues that didn't joined the Camarilla, would there be any change in the Old Clan's personality?

This is the real nail in the coffin. As a member of jury, I find the accused guilty.
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Thu Jan 30, 2014 6:45 am

Great post, Philo!

I generally agree.

This said, there are certain minor differences in my outlook on the Old Clan.
Let's get it out of the way first; I like them indeed. Even as you correctly pointed out, they could be Old Clan Ventrue. Think for a while: why not simply Ventrue Antitribu? Old, honourable, rustic, etiquette bound... Indeed. That is what I like them for. For me, it is essentially natural that certain parts of Clans might not want to go with the changes wrought by their peers. Lasombra Antitribe comes to mind, as well as before mentioned Ventrue. Do they take from the lore? I think not. They add to the soul and flourish of oWoD.

I must sadly agree with your assessment of the execution of Old Clan's implementation. This 'Souleater' thing was absolutely unnecessary. Byword reason of existence for the Old Clan seem to be honour and stability. For they fleshcrafting Childer; change.
It is hardly more of a brake than Merchant Princes, or mainstream Clan Ventrue, and their respective Antitribu. Common goal is still power. Disagreement lies in the means to attain it. Be it through keeping Status Quo or imposing a change?

Vicissitude is the mother of all problems with the Old Clan. You claim that the Eldest invented the Discipline. He was said to be a seer, a man of great vision and mutability. Agreed. Does it mean he had Vicissitude from the get go? Of course not.
Did Ashur have Mortis right after Embrace? Or Lasombra Obtenebration? No. All occult Disciplines had to be researched and experimentally established. They are not innate.
The Discipline may have been invented by Andelon and claimed by the Eldest on a later date just as well. Or researched by the Fiend himself after a period of time, if we want to discard the Souleater Theory en bloc.

That said, the Old Clan may be simply the Childer of the Eldest and said Childer Childer from times when his In-Clan set was: Animalism, Auspex, Koldunic Sorcery. This theory goes well with the Eldest being a known sorcerer pre Embrace, as well as the fact that most Koldun are Old Clan.
Above assessment will place Old Clan akin to Premescine Giovanni: one clan, different soul. And no love for siblings.

I can not agree the elder Fiends are a poor concept. They may have been mistreated, but there is a lot to play with. I have even found whole site for Old Clan enthusiasts and Chronicles, sadly it's address was lost with my IE Favourites.
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Sun Feb 16, 2014 8:01 pm

I only didn't called them Ventrue Antitribu because they would be unaligned.

I didn't claim the Eldest was born with the Discipline. I just said it was with him, or the thought process that would create it, "in the very beginning". What I meant by that is mostly the Book of Nod timeline. Remember that in this book, when they mentioned the clans present in the second city, Clan Tzimisce was already known as the "Clan of shapers". But I can see how I had phrased that badly.

I liked the way you placed the differences between the Old Clan and regular clan, the only problem I have with it is that YOU had to do it, not the official authors.

It actually made me thinking into a smoother way to transition the known Tzimisce lore phases. Something like this:

Tzimisce, the Kolduns. - Time period: Pre-historic
This is the true druidic origins of Clan Tzimisce. Back in the days, they were the link between Cainites and the spirits  and beasts of the land. Their use of Koldun came not from rigorous study, but from a deep link and understanding of reality and nature. The Path of Spirits was seen as a way to attain self-knowledge and knowledge of the world. Animalism marks their control and knowledge of the Beast within (for the Eldest was the Beast of Irad) and of the creatures that walk the earth. Auspex bases their claims as the Seers of the Kindred.
Most of the druids in this time study and learn Protean with their Gangrel, with whom they share a deep bond of mutual trust, respect and understanding.
Nicknames: Druids
Disciplines: Animalism, Auspex, Koldunic Sorcery
Favourite Out-of-Clan Discipline: Protean


The Clan splits - Time period: around the rise of Rome
With Alexander and Rome, the world becomes more connected and urbanized, a maturization of what begun with the rise of the Greek City-States. Naturalist polytheism gives way to polytheism, the old gods of the land being forgotten for more human counterparts. As humanity stops focusing on nature and instead concentrating on itself, ambitious and rebellious children of the Druids try to carve their place in this new world, shunning away their sires obsession with nature. On the other hand, the more intellectual and spiritual of those childer start to question Nature's importance, and to deviate from her desings, seeking true knowledge in the control of vitae, of Koldun, and of their own flesh.

In order to navigate this new world, the Tzimisce needs new tools. The hability to dominate animals is forsaken by some, considered useless and pointless. What replaces it is the far more useful discipline of Dominate. Koldunic Sorcery slowly loses it's consideration as a path of understanding the self and the world. It is instead a weapon to be used.
The more spiritual members of the Clan turns into themselves for self-understanding, abandoning the world of beasts and spirits. Their knowledge of Protean and Koldun slowly but surely creates a new way to shape Caine's blood, the Path of Flesh, the spiritual ancestor of Vicissitude.

Perhaps to convince others or themselves of their new status and to destroy the image of savages and druids, Clan Tzimisce adopts an obsessive consideration to social rules and etiquette.

After the fall of Rome and the start of the Dark Ages, the globalization of the world is shaterred. Tzimisce adapt by carving little holds under their absolute control. The Path of Metamorphosis does not exist yet, but it's philosophicals undercurrents begin to develop.
Disciplines: Auspex, Dominate, Koldunic Sorcery ("lord caste")/   Animalism, Auspex, Koldunic Sorcery ("sorcerer caste").
Favourite Out-of-Clan Disciplines: Animalism, Protean


The Dark Ages
With the Dark Ages isolation, the former ambitious, visionary and energetic members of the "lord caste" of the clan turn into everything they once hated on their sires: images of stasis and stability. Not that they could help it: The destruction of the Western Roman Empire left many of them trapped in little pockets of control. Perhaps out of fear, they became iron-fisted rulers of their domains, imprisioning in Blood Oath their childer and servants.

In the meanwhile, the "sorcerer caste" lived a life of intellectual ecstasy in Byzancium. Their understanding of the vampiric condition reached unknown heights. The Koldunic path of Flesh gave way for the creation of Vicissitude. Sire and childer alike were caught in a fever to fully comprehend, study and expand this way of changing flesh. The philosophical implications were tremendous. If one could change himself permanentely with it's power, what would be the apex of this power? Godhood? Centuries of debate and study gave birth to the quasi-religious Path of Metamorphosis.

Then, somewhere, a discovery was made: Vaulderie.

The Anarch Revolt
The discovery of Vaulderie was a turning point in Cainite history. Somewhere, the Tzimisce taught the Lasombra it's secrets. With their bounds broken, the younger Lasombra rallied against their elders, absorbing their Antidilluvean. The Sorcerer Caste of the Tzimisce would soon use the vinculum to break the bound of their brothers childer, starting their own revolution. In the end, the isolated, static lords are destroyed one by one. The philosophers and seers of Clan Tzimisce become the soul of the Sabbat

Clan Tzimisce, the Fiends
With the Path of Metamorphosis, the Tzimisce have a meaning and purpose to their existence. Their entire world view and beliefs are tainted by the art of Fleshcrafting. Because of it, Koldun is slowly dying. It is hardly taught and hardly sought. Sire and childer alike attempt to reach perfection through Vicissitude. A few, shambling remains of the once called "lords" of the Tzimisce remain in their ancient lands, but their existence is meaningless.

Nicknames: the Fiends
Disciplines: Animalism, Auspex, Vicissitude
Favourite Out-of-Clan Disciplines: Koldun Sorcery


I know that in this view, the Old Clan(former lord caste) get Auspex, Dominate and Koldun instead of Animalism, Auspex and Dominate, but quite frankly I think it suits it better.


Last edited by ThePhilosopher on Thu Feb 20, 2014 4:28 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Mon Feb 17, 2014 6:57 am

If you wanted to tell WW to go fuck themselves, you only needed to log into their forum! Well done Wink
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Mon Feb 17, 2014 3:07 pm

Nice one, Philo!

Auspex, Dominate, Koldunic Sorcery really is a better combination. I will type something more when I am less brain dead.
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Wed Feb 19, 2014 9:57 am

Jad.3 wrote:
If you wanted to tell WW to go fuck themselves, you only needed to log into their forum! Well done Wink

Style and class, Jad. Style and class.

Feral wrote:
I will type something when I am less brain dead

Since you were so keen to remind me of writing the wall of text, I am honored to return the favor  What a Face 
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Thu Feb 20, 2014 12:55 pm

It's interesting how the new Lord caste's discipline set is similair to the Tremere's. The only difference is Koldunic Srocery or Thaumaturgy.
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:21 pm

Philo does love Auspex Dominate combo.
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PostSubject: Re: The Philosopher's wall of text   Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:40 pm

Dragatus wrote:
It's interesting how the new Lord caste's discipline set is similair to the Tremere's. The only difference is Koldunic Srocery or Thaumaturgy.

Ancestral Blood reawakening in the Usurpers  Laughing 
Wait... Maybe the Eldest wanted to reset his Clan, bring it back from the Methamorphosist way of developement? So he tricked Saulot into conning Tremere into...There is Gehenna scenario that went like that, I think.
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