Newbie (way too many) questions

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Newbie (way too many) questions

Post by Noctifer » Tue Oct 02, 2018 12:55 am

Hi everyone - just got back from Spite where I ran into a bunch of Shadow Accord players aaaand me and my primary are interested in maybe joining. Rather than fry the brain of the nice people who were willing to talk to us about the game, hope its ok to ask a few questions here? Here's a starting list from an initial look-through of the rules (and if this is the wrong place for it just clear the post and I apologize):

1) The wiki and the rulebook seem to contradict each other on restricted sub-factions - in some places it says you can't use freebies, other places you can. So can freebies be used to play a sub-faction?

2) The 'how to get XP' is a bit confusing in that the character creation ( ... Experience) 'donations forum' is a dead link, NPCing for experience seems to be 'per how often you NPCed at an event' (so not 'spending an event as an NPC / plot-toy'), and volunteering through an entire event seems discouraged ( ... dow_Accord ) when starting out. All this relates back to question 1 since, if it turns out you can't spend freebies, trying to figure out how to have a PC that's in one of the rarer groups (Tzim / Bastet / etc)

3) Wyrm thing kill - one of the blockers of mixed spheres has usually been that garou kill anything that's not garou on site, and can sniff you from a mile away. So how does this work in this universe (especially with vampires)

4) Daywalkers - The rules in one place seem to say 'vampires can't come out into daylight, where 'out' is defined as 'past a house threshold'. In another place there seems to be a suggestion that you maybe can if you're covered in long-sleeves, gloves, and either a wide-hat or a hood. And in the traditional lore you just can't do it cause you're dead asleep. So how are vampires actually handled in SA during the day to make sure everyone can have their fun?

5) Masks - There is a lot of talk about 'masks' here - a lot of powers seem to have them. Is there a post with some example masks for different things? If a power level indicates two effects, and each is a mask, does the one mask reflect both effects / do they activate together? Or are they split up?

6) Tzim - A lot of their abilities are about modifying others.. is this a sub-group that (for SA purposes) you basically have to be an FX artist to play? Like bring a bunch of masks for people or actually do up their makeup and such? I am not quite sure I understand how that's played out in this universe and would love to hear about it.

7) Gangrel and Fomori - Things that have permanent mutations of some sort, in a world where having so much as a mole might get you labeled a witch.. how does this work? Do Gangrel have to sneak in Obfuscate or wear a hood all the time, or is there some other solution?

8) Inate Powers (Vamp specific) - Just to be sure - if you get the sub-faction Lore (3 FB) it is totally ok to start with a discipline from that subfaction? And those that are available to all factions.. when it says you start with 3 'inate' powers does that mean '3 powers from either your specific clan or those open to all the clans?

9) Rituals - do they have to be done with witnesses to sign off on how they were done? Do they have to be done in front of STs or something? Can any be done between games or prior to game start? And do you know all the possible ones when you start or do you just get the ability to learn them and have to find them all in-game?

10) Masquarade - so this is pre Masq as I understand it... but there are going to be a bunch of supernaturals running around. What's the deal with the humans in this town them, does everyone work on leaving no witnesses or are there some implicit rules that I'm not seeing that supers agree to?

11) Hunting (vamp) - how hard is feeding in this game? Is it expected you'll try to eat other PCs, or NPCs grazing in the fields, or is there some level of it that's implied to happen automatically without needing to play it out? And how do PCs tend to feel about being fed from (assuming there are enough human-players)? Is that kind of an implied no-no, or something you reserve for friends / NPCs, or.. what's the culture around that in this game?

12) Day to day jobs - I understand this is a combat-lite game. What's the day to day life like and how does one help provide content and fun for other players? My SO for example loves cooking, healing, and being generally useful... how would she go about making sure she's set for that? Are there skills / setups that are better for helping make sure everyone is having fun?

Sorry, too many questions, I apologize ><
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Re: Newbie (way too many) questions

Post by Eiluned » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:31 pm

I certainly don’t have answers to all your questions, but I’ll try to answer the ones I do know!

2) There are lots of ways to get XP. The biggest ones are:

-Show up to game. When you check in each game, you get 3 XP that you can immediately spend.
-Monetary donations. These are limited to $50 ($10/XP, for a maximum of 5 XP) per month (not game). Some people donate every month, some people donate occasionally, some people don’t donate at all. As far as I’m aware, you can donate before you’ve started playing the game if you want to save up some XP (this could be wrong, best to confirm with staff).
-NPC shifts. Our game disallows NPCing until your 3rd event as a PC, since our rules system is complex and it can be difficult for people to NPC without understanding the IG culture first. After the waiting period, you can do an NPC shift for 1 XP per shift (up to 3, for a max of 3 XP per game). You can NPC as much as you’d like, but you’ll only get 3 XP for 3+ NPC shifts.
-Volunteering. There are opportunities at every event to earn XP. This includes everything from arriving early and being minion for the deco team (setting up the IG building spaces) to after game things like cleaning bathrooms or helping the different staff teams pack up. There’s the potential for upward of 15+ XP per game if you do ALL THE THINGS.
-Item donations. Sometimes the staff teams will need item donations (thinks like boffers, garb, OOG headbands, packets, etc) and will make posts on the forums and facebook page letting people know. These opportunities aren’t super common, but they do happen from time to time.

3) From my experiences in our game, the factions *mostly* stick to their own. The garou don’t always kill everything on site- vampires and shifters don’t usually get along but friendships/alliances aren’t uncommon. Imagine an uncomfortable supernatural-wide truce (although there are exceptions, when characters become too much of a threat to any one character or faction). It really depends on the character and their behavior as to what kind of reaction you’ll get. If you come into game as a vampire and immediately ghoul a kinfolk, the shifters will probably be upset but might not kill you. As long as you don’t intentionally piss of the shifters, you shouldn’t really be harassed by them by YMMV.

4) I’m not super familiar with vampire, but it seems to be that vampires can’t be exposed in daylight without taking Agg (unless they have special powers that negate that). A common way around this is to wear a hat and gloves or some other clothing that covers the majority of exposed skin. As far as I know, vampires don’t sleep through the day but they do usually tend to stay indoors.

5) I believe if you have two masked powers, one mask should perform the duties of both if you choose to activate both. I’m fairly certain you should be able to use two masked powers without wearing two masks at the same time, although it’s possible that you may need to have different masks for certain gifts. I only really know the shifter side of this, where a “shifted form” mask also functions as powerful form if you have the gift, so it may be different elsewhere.

7) The culture of the game isn’t strict about “deformities = evil”. If you come in wearing horns, it’s possible some people might think you’re a fae or a metis (and you’ll likely have supernatural folk tell you to put a hat on) but it doesn’t mean you’ll be burned as a witch. Paganism and witchcraft aren’t uncommon in our game, and they’re fairly well tolerated by commoners and churchfolk. We don’t burn witches in our town, but it’s possible we might have to worry about powerful bishops coming into town and burning people as werewolves or vampires or demons if we’re not too careful. Keeping the veil is important but ghosts, pagans, and fae are well known and accepted as fact by the commoners in town. Some IG deformities may be accepted more than others, but nobody will accuse you of consorting with demons for a mole.

9) You don’t need anyone IG or OOG to be present for a ritual unless the ritual specifically says so. As long as the requirements of the ritual are met then you can perform it. I’m not sure if they can be done out of game space, as that should probably be a between game downtime RP with the STs. There are three levels of the Ritual skill. Each faction has rites that only they can do (glyph rites are only shifters/kinfolk, etc). You will need to have the learned the level of the Rituals appropriate for the specific Ritual you want to do. Some will also have power requirements or subfaction requirements. For example, a ritual could require you know Rituals 3 and be a Celican, and the cost is 2 energy. If you have the ritual, meet those requirements, and do the appropriate RP, you can cast the ritual. I believe you can buy common rituals at character creation if you have level in Rituals, but I’m not 100% sure on that one.

10) I answered this one a little in #7. We don’t have many commoners in town, but we do try to keep them as veiled as we can (to varying degrees of success). Fairies, ghosts, and common superstitions for the time period are well known and don’t break the Veil (or whatever the other factions call it). Most people try to keep their own faction’s secrets- whether by using Forgetful Mind when someone heard too much, ghouling a nosy human, or just murdering someone is totally up to you.

12) You’ll get a different answer to this from almost every player (I personally don’t feel like this is a combat-lite game, but that’s beside the point). I fully recommend building in character hobbies because there will be times where your character gets bored. If your SO loves cooking, it’s entirely possible they could get a job working for the tavern (there’s generally cooking, dishwashing, serving, and bartending jobs available). If they like healing, there is an IG all-faction healer’s guild that has meetings at most/every game. Depending on your character, there are lots of options for setting yourself up well. There are lots of healing abilities throughout the factions, ritualism or fortunetelling might be useful for more mystic-types. At least in Shifter faction, people will find a place for you if you want to help. Generally it takes about 3 games to get well-involved, but after a character’s 2nd game other players tend to invest a bit more in new characters and start trusting and involving them more.

As a bit of an example, I play a shifter-aligned character. One of her passions is woodburning and making boxes/chests, and she makes her coin by selling those goods at midday market. She also has some meetings and obligations throughout the weekend as she goes to moot and other shifter-related meetups. She tries to make it to the Healer’s Fraternity meetings when she can, but she’s not a morning person and misses them sometimes. When she’s bored she would go to the tavern, the forge, or wander town looking for one of her friends. She has some skills (Academics, Medicine, Melee, Rituals, etc) that get her involved in things, but it's entirely possible to meet people, be helpful, and get involved in RP without those things.

Hopefully those answers are helpful! Feel free to reach out to me if you have other questions, and I'll answer as best as I can! I’m not often on the forums, but feel free to add/message me (Taylor Merrill) on facebook :)
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Re: Newbie (way too many) questions

Post by JaggedJackal » Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:43 am

Hello! I will try to unwrap your questions. Upfront though I am not on rules team. Also a lot of these questions would be good to direct at the Character Guides. If they say something that contradicts me take their word over mine. I can at least touch on them.

My answers are going to come from strictly the rule book. The Wiki should be up to date but I like to use the book because it is truly official. Here is the link I use. ... ZjWUU/view

1: The confusion is regular sub-faction and restricted sub-faction. You can play the regular sub-factions as listed on page 16 of the rulebook for example Ventrue Vampire, Fiana Garou, and Grim Legion Wraith are all fine. To play a restricted sub-faction though you need to spend XP. For Example Tzimisce and Black Spiral Dancers are tier 1 restricted. Those restricted sub-factions cannot be payed for with freebie points.

2: The old donations forum was an older way to make donations. Now you can pay for XP. On the Square page where you can make payments you can also 'purchase' donations. This is $10 per 1 XP. You can but up to 5 a month. Not 5 per game, but 5 per month. As for NPC it is based on each time you go to ST camp. This can vary wildly but generally if you go out and be a crunchy monster for an hour counts the same as a RP based merchant for an hour. To NPC you will need to attend at least two games before you can do a shift. The reason for that is the STs give a lot of agency to the NPCs and we want to make sure the player understands the world and feel of the game for consistency. While I am not certain full time NPCs get staff XP.

3: The Garou have the somewhat deserved reputation that you describe but not really. They have a big personality and but into everything but don't just kill on sight. As long as a character isn't seen as a threat they should be fine. Yes being a Vampire doesn't automatically make someone a threat. There will be lots of distrust but not claws and teeth immediately.

4: If outside during the day you will take sunlight aggravated damage unless properly protected with clothing. If properly protected then you won't take aggravated damage. So if someone rips your hat off and runs hopefully you can get inside.

5: The mask rules on page 15 clarify this some. Masks is really flavor for what you want it to be or as the rulebook denotes. As long as it makes sense for the deco of the game. A garou chrinos mask will be a wolf mask. Valdaerman are typically bears though can be different. Gangrel are typically wolf though again can be different. Serpentis powerful form is a snake. Many of the flavor text will be in the rulebook within your sub-faction power page.

6: I haven't played or really closely interacted with a Tzimisce so I won't answer that one. Something that may help is looking at the disguising rules.

7: Having a mole won't deem you a witch. This town has seen so much supernatural stuff that they are partially numbed. That being said if you have a cat nose you will need to hide that or have a Tzimisce (or other means) shape your face to hide it.

8: The innates are of your clan. If you purchase sub-faction lore then you can purchase powers from other clans as well coming into game. Plus you can have some character knowledge of the deeper workings of that clan. The character guides can help explain how deep that goes.

9:Rituals don't need witnesses when completed. They can be completely solo. As for between games that should be fine but if they have any energy cost make sure that those are considered expended coming into next game. For example instead of coming in with a full 10 out of 10 vitae you have 8 out of

10. As for knowing rituals you simply need to have the appropriate skill level, the physical ritual prop in game, and any other random bits that specific ritual may require.

11: I haven't played a vampire PC so I can't answer fully. A random villager wouldn't want you to feed from them and doing so is a good way to get killed. There are some that trade blood for favors or tasks. NPCs are also a common target.

12: There are lots of ways to have entertainment. There is a healers group of mixed faction. The tavern hires cooks, bartenders, and guards. You can be an official within the town. Lots of ways to keep yourself busy.

Let me know if you have further follow up questions.
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Re: Newbie (way too many) questions

Post by Noctifer » Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:50 am

Thank you so much! Helps a lot - I'll pursue some of the questions further with a character guide as you suggested but that cleared up a lot and gave me some great starting points, thank you :)
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