World of Darkness: Tenebris Raptis

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PostSubject: Spirit Manipulation   Fri Feb 26, 2010 9:01 pm

Spirit Manipulation

Not to be confused with, or perhaps derived from the ancient Path of Spirit Thaumaturgy (see Dark Ages Companion, p. 107), Spirit Manipulation is a relatively recent innovation of the Tremere. Created to replace the rituals practiced by the clan in the days when it was a band of mortal wizards, Spirit Manipulation is the art of forcing spirits into actions and situations that would normally be anathema to them. Spirit Manipulation simulates many effects that can be created by Lupine and shamanic mages, but does so by forcing the spirits involved into a grotesque mockery of their normal behaviors. Any botch with Spirit Manipulation not only inflicts the normal loss of Willpower involved with thaumaturgical mishaps but also turns the full force of the spirit's wrath against the offending vampire.
(HOUSE RULE: normally this power cannot be used on wraith or the shadow lands, in this game the powers of Spirit manipulation can indeed effect the spirits of the dead)

* Hermetic Sight

The vampire can perceive the spirit world, either by gazing deeply into it or by seeing the presence of nearby spirits as a hazy overlay on the material world. This power does not allow the thaumaturge to see into the realms of the fae.

System: 0ne success on the roll is needed for the thaumaturge to perceive spirits, while two allow him to view the spirit realm. With less than four successes, the thaumaturge is at +2 difficulty to all actions performed while using this power due to the distraction of divided perceptions. Hermetic Sight lasts for the duration of the scene or until the thaumaturge deactivates it.

** Astral Cant

The languages of the spirit world are infinitely varied and mainly incomprehensible to mortal (or immortal) minds. Astral Cant does not teach the thaumaturge the tongues of the spirits, but it does allow him to understand them as they speak to him and to reply in their own languages - in effect, a universal translator for the spirit world. Imprecise use of this power can be disastrous, particularly when a thaumaturge is bargaining with a powerful spirit. The use of this power is not always necessary; many spirits speak human tongues but choose to feign ignorance when dealing with vampires.

System: The number of successes determines the accuracy of the translation.
* Pidgin spirit language; very simple words and phrases can be comprehended.
** Simple sentences are possible; "trade language."
*** Fluent conversation; sufficient for most conversations.
**** Complex issues such as metaphysics can be discussed.
***** Even the most obscure idiomatic expressions and forms of humor come through.

*** Voice of Command

This is perhaps the most dangerous power in the Spirit Manipulation arsenal, for the consequences if a thaumaturge fails can be most unpleasant. Voice of Command allows a vampire to issue orders to a spirit, compelling it to heed her bidding whether or not it desires to do so.

System: The player makes the normal Willpower roll; the target spirit resists with Willpower (difficulty of the thaumaturge's Manipulation + Occult or Manipulation + Lore: Spirits). The degree of success the thaumaturge attains determines the complexity and severity of the command that she can issue.
Botch The spirit is immune to the character's commands for the rest of the night. It reacts however the Storyteller deems appropriate.
Failure The spirit is unaffected, and further attempts to command it are made at +I difficulty (cumulative). It may ignore, taunt or even attack the character at the Storytellers discretion.
* The spirit obeys a very simple command that is no great inconvenience to it.
** The spirit heeds a relatively straightforward command that it is not innately opposed to performing.
*** The spirit agrees to perform a moderately complex task that does not violate its ethics.
**** The spirit consents to an extended or intricate task that does not place it in immediate danger.
***** The spirit accepts a lengthy or nigh-impossible task, or one that may mean its destruction.

Crafty Storytellers should note that spirits compelled by this power are fully aware that they are being forced into these actions, and may well seek revenge on their erstwhile masters at a later time.

Thaumaturges who issue commands above and beyond what their spirit servants are compelled to perform may find themselves ignored or mocked. Even worse, a spirit in such a situation may "agree" to follow orders without following through, leaving the thaumaturge in a situation of potentially fatal embarrassment.

**** Entrap Ephemera

This power allows a thaumaturge to bind a spirit into a physical object. This can be done to imprison the target, but is more often performed to create a fetish, an artifact that allows a user to channel a portion of the spirit's power through it to affect the physical world. Fetishes created by this power are often recalcitrant and fail at inopportune moments, as the spirits within are most displeased with their situation and will take any Opportunity to escape or thwart their captors.

System: The number of successes rolled determines the power level of the fetish to be created. A fetish is activated by rolling the user's Willpower (difficulty of the fetish's power level + 3). A botch on this roll destroys the physical component of the fetish and frees the spirit that was trapped within.

For more complete guidelines to fetish powers, refer to pages 273-275 of Werewolf: The Apocalypse. The Storyteller is always the final authority in determning the powers and mechanics of a fetish created through use of this power.

***** Duality

The thaumaturge can now fully interact with the spirit world. While using this power, he exists on both planes of existence at once. He is able to pick up objects in the physical world and place them in the spirit world and vice versa. Beings and landscape features in both realms are solid to him, and he can engage in any manner of interaction. He can even use Thaumaturgy and other Disciplines in either world. This is not without its dangers, however; One misstep and the vampire can find himself trapped in the spirit realm with no way to return home. Several incautious thaumaturges have starved into torpor while trapped on the other side of the barrier that separates the physical and spirit realms.

System: The number of successes dictates how long the vampire can interact with the spirit world.
* One turn
** Three turns
*** 10 turns
**** 10 minutes
***** The remainder of the scene

Duality can only be used while the character is in the physical world. Note that while Duality is in effect the character is also susceptible to attacks from both realms. Additionally, the player must roll Perception + Occult (difficulty Cool when this power is activated; a roll with less than three successes indicates that all rolls made while this power is active are at +2 difficulty due to the distraction of the character's dual perceptions. The character is still considered to be in the physical world for purposes of basic physics and common sense - for instance, his feet rest on the ground in the physical world, not the ground in the spirit world, and he could thus walk across a spiritual chasm if a physical parking lot overlaid the same space.

A botch on the roll to activate this power tears the vampire out of the physical world and traps him in the spirit realm. The way back the physical realm, if there is one, is left to the Storyteller's discretion, and may constitute an entire adventure in and of it self.
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