That sucks, but explains a lot. Lol
This is personally why I’ve focused my interpretation of the Black Hand on what’s written in ‘Caine’s Chosen the Black Hand’, generally from what I’ve read in there, there’s a solid basis for the sect, and they could quite easily supplant the Sabbat as thing currently stand.
Shame internal issues stopped us getting another well made book on the Hand though.
Just had to check that book out. Looks like it came out during my time away from roleplaying.
From the synopsis, it’s seems MUCH more in line with what I was expecting the group to be, based on the initial teases prior to “Dirty Secrets of the Black Hand”. Now I’m going to have to grab a copy at some point…
I could absolutely see this being a direction they could take to blend the more violent Anarchs together with what remains of the Sabbat, to give us something that is fresh, and fits a natural progression with relative ease.
That may have been after the (sigh) retcon. When I spoke to Rein dot Hagen about it, he was adamant the Sabbat were the total opposite of what a standard Vampire PC (the ones which begin with Humanity) oughto begin as… and to strive to be.
From my understanding they’re essentially Sabbat special forces, with a dash of religious fanaticism. They’re rather like the Hashashin, fundamentalist specialists in systematic warfare. Unlike other Sabbat they’re organised, singularly resolved on their ‘divine mission’. Personally I think that works better than what’s in Dark Secrets, and complements the more public Inquisitors.
Not really sure how you’ make a ‘standard Vampire PC’, the game by its nature opens up a great many options. Sure the Sabbat character is monstrous so you might not have the same struggle with the beast as a Cammy character but the Sabbat have their own struggles.
Fervent believers, die-hard believers in freedom, mystics, priests, ducti, etc all clash with one another. That’s before you even consider the transition of a moral human being into a depraved monster. A Cammy fledgling might be expected to reject the beast, a Sabbat fledgling is expected to unreservedly engage in great depravity.
If a vampire character is meant to be a character with conflicts, flaws, motivations, i.e. a dramatic character then the Sabbat can provide just as well as the Camarilla or Anarchs to my understanding.
Like I said, before all that retconned nonsense, the S were meant to be like the sith. Or worse.
Is the retcon really all that bad then? Personally from the sounds of it appears to have made the Sabbat better, something that players and ST’s can actually engage with rather than just have them as generic-evil mook #307.
Personally, I dont like it. For «relatable frenemy vamps» I think the Anarchs or Camarilla (depending on which side yr group was), sufficed. If the S were, in general terms, anarchs 2.0, why have the anarchs in the 1st place?
I think the Sabbat are meant to offer something distinct from the Anarchs in many ways. Anarchs for the most part are about liberating themselves and little else, they want to stop the rule of elders but it typically only extends to saying ‘F*** the CAM!’ in effect.
The Sabbat meanwhile, at least the more conservative ones, view themselves as being involved in a quite literal holy war against the Antediluvians. I agree that the freedom loving Sabbat start to infringe on the Anarchs a fair bit, but I guess the difference to explore there as an ST or player is the difference in morality.
An Anarch wants to be free from the elders but typically holds to their humanity, a freedom loving member of the Sabbat doesn’t do that. They’ll happily murder, ■■■■, and steal their way through the final nights if that’s what they want to do.
To me it seems like the Sabbat was a way to phase out the Anarchs, and the fact that there is more books previously dealing exclusively with the Sabbat over book dealing exclusively with the Anarchs almost proves that hypothesis. My thought is when the new White Wolf took over the franchise they realised they had two redundant factions and decided to focus on the one that fell more in line with their Humanity centric paradigm, again this is just a theory but it does make more sense given their emphasis on Humanity. Think about it they eliminated the two things that are most likely to be on Alternate paths of Morality the Sabbat and Elders (which were problematic in their own right as well.)
I prefer having Camarilla vs Anarchs being the central conflict of the game, and The Sabbat being boogieman figures in the background.
I wouldn’t mind seeing the Lasombra and Tzimisce clans being presented within the Camarilla/Anarch or at least Independent set up, however. The don’t need to be inherently Sabbat in my view. Similarly, I could see the various non-Humanity, morality Paths being available to all too.
I think in the long run though they’ll end up bringing elders and alternate morality back into the game. The same way they’ve massively simplified thaumaturgy in the new edition, I reckon these things will all see expansions in future products.
So the same way we’re getting a book on Kindred religions and cults, we’ll likely get one on alternate morality eventually, extra-thaumaturgy and the such. To not provide those things, in the long run, would be a real kick in the teeth I think. A lot of fans really enjoyed those elements of the game, to cut them out in hopes of simplifying things would be to do the WoD a disservice I think.
On the whole, though this might just be me pining for the Sabbat, I always found them and the Camarilla more interesting than the Anarchs. I get that the Anarchs are all about freedom, but I never felt they had as strong a mission or identity as the other factions, and that for me always made them less interesting.
On the clans shifting, I’d say I have to disagree Trippy. Personally one of the things I’m liking least is how all the clans are being forced into picking a side between the Anarchs and the Camarilla. The independents always added a new level of complexity and given that the Anarchs were more an idealistic movement rather than a governing force per see, meant that it made sense no clan, for the most part, stood with the Anarchs. Joining the Anarchs was more of an individual’s decision.
As much as Elders are fun to play and Alternate paths, I kind of hope they don’t come back. I think it would ruin what they have going thus far. It is a game that is filled with new ideas with older concepts flavoring it and the stuff that has been problematic cut out. For once in a long time the game feels refreshed and not feel like a dead horse being beaten over and over again with the same frustrations. I mean don’t get my wrong I loved the Sabbat, but it got old after a while and the Elder game was fun for a while as well then it just got stagnant.
That’s fair, I definitely get what you mean about things being made a lot more fresh with this edition, it’s certainly much accessible that’s for sure.
That’s why personally I think they’ll look at adding in things like elders and alternate morality much further down the line once they’ve had a chance to think about things. Not to mention hopefully having found some ways to make them interesting and engaging again without burdening down the core game.
The problem is is that elders and paths are already in the game. The Paths are just not spelled out for players. So I don’t ever see them being added in since they are already there. Hoepfully though we may see them a bit more obvious than what they are currently.
Sorry to bother, but where are they (in the corebook @ least)? Can you point it out to me?
I think Red is referring to the fact that a lot of the story is set around Vampires who we know are elders, like Theo Bell, Aisling Sturbridge, Victoria Ash, and others. As for Paths, a lot of them were on Paths back in the day, and with the way Convictions and Touchstones works, it isn’t hard to take Path Ethics as Convictions - which basically makes your vampire on a Path, even though they have Humanity.
Its all good @RCAUTELA, Basically what I refer to is that there are some of elders with full states one 5th generation and one 4th in Chicago by Nights one of which came back from the Beckoning. The books published so far also have several elder Vampires mentioned in them that have not succumbed to the beckoning but are not stated out. But Elders are still in the game. I find that many people not yourself of course just make the statement that all elders are gone and then this statement is perpetuated by those that have barely read the books or have not at all. This creates a false narritive that Elders are no longer in the game. So when I hear people talking about how they should add elders back into the game I try to correct that narrative to just say they already are. And if you look at the Camarilla guide it is also hinted at that they are not being killed in the middle east but are there to possibly just go to sleep for a bit or to be used in the war on the Sabbat. Up to the ST really.
As far as Paths they are mentioned on page 172 of the core book under what convictions can represent to the character. Paths are now a part of the belief system of a vampire which at the core is convictions. Many people equate humanity to the morality system of V5 because that is what it was in previous editions, which is why a keep saying Humanity(V5) is not Humanity(pre5). Humanity is now basically a meter between human and beast and all characters even Sabbat would use this.
Morality now is a broad category of which the game focuses on a subset and those are called the chronicle tenets. There are more moral sins, tenets, than what a chronicle will use, an individual chronicle just focuses on a few and these are the ones you pick for you chronicle as tenets and then the ones that are always present like making a ghoul or Brutally feeding on someone and this is why two different chronicles can have different tenets. Because both focus on different stories. Morals don’t change but what a chronicle focuses on do.
So Paths are as stated just a different set of convictions that will protect you from the focus of the games morality and keep you humanity meter from going to 0.
For me personally I do not want to see a new mechanic introduced to the game since this would be outside the design we currently have. what I would like to see is a better explanation on how to use the system we have to represent the Paths as they where stated that they are in this system on Page 172.
Sorry that is long and winded and since I work 90 hours a week and can not write without being interupted 50 times. I hope not to confusing.
Red I didn’t make an assumption that all Elders were gone but that they have been removed as an option for play there is a difference.
As for Path no where in the book does it state Path of Honorable Accord, or Path of Cathari, or Path of Power and the Inner Voice or any other paths for that matter but it does in deed say many times over and over and over again HUMANITY. Also again no Character even former Sabbat Lasombra are stated with an alternate morality path again screaming they are stressing Humanity over Alternate Paths of Morality.
Sorry, yes they don’t have specifics step by step rules for creating elders but it would not be hard to do play one since they give all the rules to do so.
As for paths like I said Humanity is not humanity. and it specifically says that convictions are Vampiric paths. To each their own though.