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Transcendent Invulnerability Understanding

 Cost:  5m/Health Level, committed
 Duration:  Indefinite
 Type:  Simple
 Minimum Resistance:  5
 Minimum Essence:  5
 Prerequisite Charms:  Adamant Skin Technique, Immunity to Everything Technique

The design of the Manses which produce Gems of Incomparable Wellness was originally based on this charm, a pinnacle of indestructibility common in the First Age but unheard of in the Age of Sorrows. Where the prerequisite charms allow an outside force to be entirely ignored for an instant, and the body to cleanse itself of pathogens and poisons for a short while, with this charm the Solar is able to internalize and embody these principles for as long as she commits the Essence to fortifying her form. It takes one hour of meditation for each health level the Solar wishes to fortify with this charm.

For each 5 motes committed, one health level the Solar possesses is protected. This starts with Incapacitated, and works its way up the Health boxes from there. Each health level protected by this charm is inviolate in the same way as if the character were protected by a Gem of Incomparable Wellness. Health levels under the umbrella of this charm lost to Bashing or Lethal damage return at a rate of one per round, while those lost to Aggravated damage return at a rate of one per hour. If the character is killed by some effect other than health levels of damage, this charm will restore the character to life after an hour, with all her health levels filled by Aggravated Damage. The health levels fortified by this charm will heal at their accelerated rate, and then the others will heal at the Exalt's normal rate.

This is a perfect effect. In order to kill a Solar with even one health level protected by this charm, the essence must be dispersed first. This can be done in the same way as forcing a character to deattune from a Manse or an Artifact: with specialized Occult rituals, or specialized charms.

Eternal Golden Zenith

 Cost:  20m, 2w
 Duration:  One Day
 Type:  Simple or Reflexive (see text)
 Minimum Resistance:  6
 Minimum Essence:  6
 Prerequisite Charms:  Transcendent Invulnerability Understanding

The Dawn caste were known for parrying even the mightiest of blows. The Night caste were known for evading the impossible. The Zenith caste needed neither of these tricks to escape harm: their way was to simply ignore all harm. After activating this charm, the Zenith exalt's anima would flare to the 8 mote level, and never fall below this until the next dawn. Yet while it flared, the glory of the Unconquered Sun would prevent any harm to his high priests (Other Castes could learn this charm with no penalty, but it was not common simply out of tradition). Before entering a Shadowland to do battle, the Zenith warriors who would march in front would often activate this charm; it is said the dead would blanch at the very sight of the coruscant Essence, as if they could see some difference from the normal Solar aura.

While this charm is active, it may be re-activated in response to any incoming damage for 1 mote. This counts as the character's charm activation per turn; this charm may be included in combos as a reflexive charm, but only its reflexive and instant use counts for the combo. When so activated, this charm cancels all damage just as Adamant Skin Technique would. The same restrictions about not canceling secondary effects apply. However, while the couruscating aura of this charm persists, the Solar also benefits from the same effects as the Immunity to Everything Technique, if he spends 1 mote whenever that charm could prevent a bad effect from taking place.

Eternal Golden Zenith v1.22

 Cost:  Special
 Duration:  Permanent
 Type:  Special
 Minimum Resistance:  6
 Minimum Essence:  6
 Prerequisite Charms:  Transcendent Invulnerability Understanding

The Dawn caste were known for parrying even the mightiest of blows. The Night caste were known for evading the impossible. The Zenith caste needed neither of these tricks to escape harm: their way was to simply ignore all harm. Elders who surpassed a mortal's lifetime would gain a lasting mark of this glorious invulnerability on their bodies, their might forever invested in unchanging glory.

When this charm is purchased, the character permanently loses five motes from his or her peripheral Essence pool. This happens each time the charm is purchased. These motes are not committed so much as transformed; the Solar's skin has permanently taken on some of the mystical resilience of Orichalcum. As a result, skin so treated gains a slight golden sheen, becoming more radiant and metallic with each purchase of this charm. This charm may be purchased no more times than the lower of Resistance or permanent Essence. Each ability of this charm may be purchased only once at Essence 6. The Essence and Resistance minimum to take each subsequent purchase of an ability rises by one. Choose one of the following effects when purchasing this charm:

  • The character can only be harmed by either stunts or the use of one or more charms.
    • Either a stunt or a charm will work by itself.
    • This ability must be purchased before the abilities which limit the harm to only one category.
  • The character cannot be harmed without the use of charms. (Essence and Reistance 7 minimum)
    • This supersedes the first ability, but stacks with the third.
    • Selected twice, this option requires a combo or Sorcery to harm the character. This option may only be selected twice.
  • The character cannot be harmed without a stunt. (Essence and Reistance 7 minimum)
    • This ability supersedes the first ability, but stacks with the second; if both are possessed, a charm must be used and an appropriate stunt described.
    • This ability may be taken up to three times. The stunt must be one die if it is taken once, two dice if twice, three dice if three times.
  • The character is immune to damage from non-magical-materials weapons. This includes enchanted items.
    • Normal arrows count as Magical Materials when fired from an Artifact bow. Magical Materials arrows count as their Magical Material even if fired from a normal bow.
    • Attacks which deal aggravated damage, or which are composed of pure Essence, count as magical materials weapons.
    • This version of the charm provides lesser protection from Stunts or Charms unless those versions are also purchased. Against these effects, unless superseded by the preceeding functions, this level of weapon immunity functions as the later levels do against Magical Materials.
    • Purchasing this ability multiple times allows the character to pick one Magical Material (including Aggravated Damage and Essence discharges) per purchase which the character uses her bashing soak against, and counts it as hardness. Example: Seven Glorious Harmonies, the very old Solar priestess, buys this version of the charm twice when she's Essence 7. For the second purchase, she chooses Aggravated Damage, so any attacks which do Aggravated Damage are soaked with her Bashing score and have a minimum damage of 0. However, attacks from any of the 5 Magical Materials, or from Essence discharges (including Terrestrial animas), still affect her as normal, even if they inflict Aggravated Damage.
  • Double the character's entire soak, including armor and the effects given by other charms.
    • This version may be taken any number of times, each time adding to the multiplier. So taken twice, it triples. Taken three times, it quadruples, etc.

Effects Chart

Each bullet point is a separate charm purchase. The Essence 6 levels must be purchased before the Esence 7 levels, etc.

Essence 6:

  • Immune to non-stunted, non-charm attacks (this effect is available to Raksha, Moonshadow, and Eclipse at Essence 1).
  • Immune to non-Artifact weapons, unless the attacks are stunted or charm-influenced; stunted or charmed attacks are soaked with Bashing soak, with a minimum damage of 0.
  • Double the character's soak. Assuming Stamina 6 and Orichalcum Superheavy Plate, this means soak values of 46B and 40L, without other charms applied.

Essence 7:

  • Immune to attacks that are not at least 1-die stunts.
  • Also immune to attacks which are not the subject of at least one charm.
  • One Magical Material, or Essence Discharges, or Aggravated attacks which come from a non-MM, non-Essence Discharge source (such as Essence Venom Strike) may be chosen. The chosen category is soaked with Bashing soak, and a minimum damage of 0 is applied.
  • Triple the character's soak. Assuming Stamina 7 and the same armor, this means soak values of 72B and 63L.

Essence 8:

  • Immune to attacks made with less than a 2-die stunt.
  • Also immune to any attacks not made with a Combo or Sorcery spell.
  • Two Magic weapon categories are soaked with Bashing soak, with 0 minimum damage.
  • Quadruple the character's soak. Stamina 8 with the same armor gets 100B and 88L at this point.

Essence 9:

  • Immune to attacks made with less than a 3-die stunt.
  • Three Magic weapon categories use Bashing soak, 0 min.
  • Quintuple soak. Stamina 9 + armor = 130B, 115L.

Essence 10:

  • Four Magic weapon categories get Bashed to a 0 min.
  • Sextuple soak (huh huh... he said sex). Stamina 10 gets shinied up with 162B/144L.

For the record, there are 16 possible purchases of this charm by Essence 10, but any one Solar could only have 10 of them. Probably the strongest kind of invulnerability is the kind which protects against non-stunted attacks, with second place being the charm-only branch. The soak-maxing line is relatively pointless after a little while, because absolutely everything ends up hitting the minimum damage of Essence at that level, except Gaia's Rebuke, or standing out in a Rain of Doom all night (which, until the sextuple soak, would both still kill you easily; the Rain of Doom still does even at that level).

Eternal Golden Zenith v2.0

 Cost:  None
 Duration:  Permanent
 Type:  Special
 Minimum Resistance:  6
 Minimum Essence:  6
 Prerequisite Charms:  Transcendent Invulnerability Understanding

The Dawn caste were known for parrying even the mightiest of blows. The Night caste were known for evading the impossible. The Zenith caste needed neither of these tricks to escape harm: their way was to simply ignore all harm. Elders who surpassed a mortal's lifetime would gain a lasting mark of this glorious invulnerability on their bodies, their might forever invested in unchanging glory. Forever after learning this charm, attacks with mortal weapons would never again harm the Exalt. Only attacks enhanced by Charms, or from weapons made of Essence or Magical Materials would be able to harm the Solar from this point on.

Brilliant Sunburst Transcendence

 Cost:  Special
 Duration:  Permanent
 Type:  Special
 Minimum Resistance:  7
 Minimum Essence:  7
 Prerequisite Charms:  Eternal Golden Zenith

In transcending the limits of mortal flesh, the Solar who learns this charm undergoes a remarkable transformation. The Solar's Caste Mark disappears, subsumed into a general golden sheen which suffuses all of his flesh. The Solar is now considered to be made of Orichalcum. This makes it difficult for him to recieve medical attention, as only tools of the Magical Materials or Essence can affect his flesh. Normal healing charms also lose their effectiveness, unless the Exalt performs them himself, or they are performed by another Exalt with Essence 7+; however, Craft charms which can mend Artifacts of the Magical Materials become effective for repairing non-Aggravated damage the character suffers. However, this charm obviates most of the need for such attention. Forever after this, the Solar does not take Lethal damage; it is converted to Bashing damage instead (of course, Bashing damage which overflows the Solar's health levels still becomes Lethal). Aggravated damage is soaked with his Lethal soak, but it is still just as difficult to heal.

This invulnerability comes at a terrible cost, though. The Solar who would learn this charm must permanently sacrifice 10 motes from his peripheral Essence pool.

The Burning Wound

 Cost:  1 health level
 Duration:  Instant
 Type:  Reflexive
 Minimum Resistance:  7
 Minimum Essence:  7
 Prerequisite Charms:  Eternal Golden Zenith

Poison and disease alike shrivel before the gaze of the Sun, destroyed by a power far purer than mere fire. Whenever this solar would be infected or take ill effects from poison, she may instead take a single bashing health level of damage (unsoakable). This prevents any other effects of the poison or disease. Activating this charm does not count as the character's charm activation per turn, if it should happen to be needed in combat.

Unconquered Apotheosis

 Cost:  Special
 Duration:  Permanent
 Type:  Special
 Minimum Resistance:  8
 Minimum Essence:  8
 Prerequisite Charms:  Brilliant Sunburst Transcendence, The Burning Wound

Though the Sidereal Exalted are the manipulators of Destiny, the power of fate is dimmed compared to the light of the Sun's Chosen. Dimmed, but not darkened entirely; it is the only power which can match Chosen of this level. With this Charm, the Solar's place in Creation becomes so secure that it takes a particular destiny to harm him. No matter what else it is, if an attack is made without being a Stunt, it cannot harm the Exalt with this charm in any way. This not only includes damage, but the effects of poison, illness, and spells as well. Some kind of stunt must be performed by a named character to adversely affect this Exalt.

This Charm may be purchased more than once. It may be purchased a second time at Essence & Resistance 9, and a third time at Essence & Resistance 10. Each time this charm is purchased, it increases the number of Stunt dice required to harm the character by one. So, with three purchases of the charm at Essence 10, only 3-die stunts will cause any harm.

The cost of this Apotheosis matches that of the Sunburst Transcendence: each purchase of this charm destroys 10 motes of the character's Peripheral Essence pool.


Badass. I'm thinking it might be an Essence 6 effect...but it DOES require a buttload of committed motes. ~DualMegami

Reason I figured I could get away with Essence 5 is that a stronger version comes free with 5 dots of Manse. Thanks for the props. ^_^ - IanPrice
On the other hand, it is a lot easier to stop somebody if they are using the hearthstone - after all, they come back at incapacitated and you can always, y'know, take it. It seems a little bit easy to become effectively immortal this way. Maybe at a higher essence pre-req? - TheHoverpope
Yeah, but so does the person with this. And you have to not only take the hearthstone, but deattune them from it. Which is equally as hard. Or easy; requires a difficulty 4 Occult roll that takes a couple of hours of ritual to complete in either case... big whoop. Tie the Solar up real good. Worthy antagonists ought to have access to Jade or Soulsteel manacles... - IanPrice

I'll chime in with Essence 6 being a good thing here. I like the idea and its definantly within Solar theme...so go you. - Telgar

The guidelines in Savant & Sorcerer for creating Artifacts and Hearthstones say that the default power level for an effect is dots = Essence minimum of the charm. I can't agree that this is Essence 6 unless I can be shown that it's siginificantly more powerful than the Gem of Incomparable Wellness, which I based it on. See above for the easy way of defeating it. - IanPrice
But this assumes that the Stone is correctly and perfectly balanced. This is obviously not true. It simply takes one look at CMoS Form and then at say, the five dot Gem of Perfect Mobility to see the fallacy. The Gem of Wellness is quite obviously the most powerful hearthstone yet published. And easily arguabley too powerful for it's level. You need to have a solid foundations, before you can build your argument off of it. - Scrollreader
My first design rule is: look to the base book. Anything outside of that is optional material. I mention Savant and Sorcerer because it specifically prints rules clarifying guidelines for the power levels of things. Outside of that, clearly almost all the Hearthstones printed outside the core Exalted book are less powerful than the ones found in the original set. The Gem of Perfect Mobility can't compare to either the Gem of Incomparable Wellness or the Gem of Sapphire and Emerald. Yet the latter two are in the core book, and therefore I believe them to be better guidelines. Immortality or constant counterspell protection from all the spells you're likely to encounter. And the base-book counterpart to Essence 5? Adamant circle sorcery, as GregLink mentions below. Pick your method of laying waste mighty armies. All at once with a spell, or one by one since you can't die. - IanPrice

Savant and Sorcerer is a terrible guideline for Artifacts and Hearthstones, much less Charms. Also, your new charm is clunky and inelegant. It's basically a charm that reduces the cost of other charms and makes them Reflexive for a short time. This is..well, not very good. I'm a firm believer in Charms needing to have seperate mechanics instead of just tweaking or affecting older charms. - Telgar

Hmm. I'm with you on Savant and Sorceror, but we've seen a few high essence charms that are a tweaking of older charms already.
See below for my thoughts on the subject of using official, printed guidelines. Suffice it to say that I find it very helpful in making sure my material is accessible to everybody. As for the clunkiness of my new charm, I can see what you mean, and I will consider this. However, look at the precedents I have. Dipping Swallow Defense moves on to Bulwark Stance, which does the same thing for a whole turn, then Fivefold Bulwark Stance which does it for a scene. Combined with Heavenly Guardian Defense, at Essence 6 the Melee tree gets Protection of Celestial Bliss, a charm of indefinite duration which gives a number of perfect defenses equal to the user's Melee trait, ending only when those have all been used up. It's tough to improve on the mechanics of perfection. Do you have a better suggestion? I am open to other mechanics, but all I've heard from my critics so far is that I am bad, with no word on how to improve. - IanPrice

Seems ok to me. I figure, a limited form of invulnerabliy is ok at Essence 5. And the Essence commit is pretty bad, so I can't see people buying more than one level. (At that level, your really better off threatening the charachters goals than life anyway. Do really want to try to bring a a new charachter to a game that old?) For EGZ I always found the pointless "aura flare" effect on some high Essence charms annoying, as it doesn't make a whole lot sense some times. (Eye of the Unconqured Sun? WTF?). -FlowsLikeBits

For anybody but a Night Caste, I figure that stealth isn't the point once you reach Essence 6. A Zenith Caste would especially want to be seen bearing the light of the Unconquered Sun into the darkness against his enemies. The aura flare isn't a disadvantage; it's an extra bonus for use in Performance and Presence stunts. It's only a disadvantage if the Zenith is trying to sneak around like the Night. As the text of the charm states: it was designed by Zenith Caste, for Zenith Caste. - IanPrice
True, but it's annoying to have it built into the mechanics. I mean, if you want glow, use peripheral essence, no prob. What if people are trying to sleep or something? It's not really a big deal though.
Honestly, I think vs 1.1 is more powerful than the original. Now my comparison point here is PoCB as there arn't many defensive SMA charms at this level. I would say requiring 3 die stunts is a bit much, as I like those to rare. I would cap it at requiring a 2 die stunt. I also don't like stunts to be required. They should be cool and encouraged, but you should be able to succeed without them. That being said, requiring a 2 die stunt is I think as far as you should go in this way.
For the record, I would point out that "immunity to non-MM" weapons technically makes you immune to archery. I'd probably have to smack someone, but I can see it comming up.
The bashing soak as hardness vs Agg and Double soak seek iffy to me, although I think play testing would be required. Doubling your natural soak I can see, but including armor seems like it could get nasty. Not sure. -FlowsLikeBits
For the record, thanks. I have clarified that normal arrows count as Artifacts if fired from such a bow. Check out the rest of what is now v1.21, see how you like it. The defensive equivalent in a Sidereal MA would be CMoS Form. Admittedly, that's only 5/5. But still, it gives you a free reflexive hopping defense each turn, in three dimensions. Aside from perfect defenses, hopping defenses are the most powerful kind, because is you've got the ability to move somewhere your opponent can't, they defend you infallibly without rolling. Three dimensions makes it pretty hard to follow. - IanPrice

I'm also with IanPrice on this. I like Ess 5, and I think it's quite reasonable. I've heard an argument mentioning CMoS and the Gem of Perfect Mobility, but it wasn't completed. All I hear are arguments claiming that the GoIW is "the bomb" and "the awesome", and "too much", but no one has stepped up and said "Hey. At Essence 5, you can boost your Essence to 10. You can get extra independent actions. You can do Solar Sorcery. At Essence 5, you can do whatever it is that you want, as long as it's directly related to the ability at hand. At higher Essence levels, things only get sick, and more generally applicable, such as Athletics being able to do what Awareness might normally do, as you run around a region at hyperspeed, getting the lay of the land, and finding anythig you want." To me, Essence is where it's at. It's where you're getting scene-long reflexive counterattacks, parries, and automatic successes to all melee rolls of any sort. You become the army killer. It's where you're getting the ability to craft things out of pure Essence that will remain persistent. And, in my opinion, it's where you simply cannot be killed while you have Essence remaining. Tortured, beaten to a pulp, and left in a volcano, only to die and be reborn again for an eternity, yes, but killed - no.
-- GregLink

The problem, GReglink, is that with EGT it is impossible to run a Solar out of essence. With this charm, even in classic, though PC exacerbates this. - Scrollreader
Thank you, GregLink, for saying what I also feel. I will also add that I do not hold with the school of thought that dismisses official material out of hand due to personal whims of system balance. Especially base-book material. There's a lot of effort and editing that goes into making these books. I paid good money for them, besides. If I wanted to make up my own rules from scratch, I'd save the money and make my own setting. Therefore, in designing these charms, my primary guideline must, I feel, be the printed material.
That said, if any of you use this in a game you run, feel free to make it an Essence 6 charm if you feel the need. That's the beauty of it, because I could make the power my way (and thus within the reach of most PCs, though at the outside limit of likelihood), and you could make it your way (thus only showing up in a game where the characters exceed 100 years of age). - IanPrice


"I had specific instructions to do this kind of thing. ... Expanding the tactical 
map in new directions is necessary when you start thinking about high-end Charms.
The alternative is scene-length perfect defenses that Combo with Surprise
Anticipation Method, the equivalent obscenity in attack Charms, and then your combat
ability stops improving " - Scrollreader

You are of course free to deviate for your own game however you wish. But this is not the direction the developers appear to be going, and for obvious reasons

Doesn't change the fact that they printed Protection of Celestial Bliss in Caste Book: Dawn. One way of ignoring all the attacks you want is as good as another. My whole intent with these charms was to give a look at how Zenith Caste can do their thing at high Essence, just like the Dawn kids. Once again, I'm happy with these charms unless someone gives me a suggestion for how to change them, instead of more reasons why they're "just plain wrong." Even saying "make it a higher mote cost" would be more than I've seen here for EGZ. All I've heard for TIU is "make it Essence 6," for which I've heard no compelling reasons. All I've been told is, "the printed material is unbalanced." I would be more than happy to make up some other kind of mechanic for resisting hurty really well, but nobody's said what they would like to see from that. - IanPrice

Despite this, I am posting an alternate mechanic for Eternal Golden Zenith, to see what you all think. The new mechanic is more based on the idea of the Fair Folk charm Bastion of Self.

Well, to provide useful comments, I'm distinctly worried about EGZ 1.1. In particular, for 5 motes and 6 charm purchases (the max you can take when you can first get the charm) it seems that you can activate this thing, permanently, to avoid all but 3-die stunts, using Essence-created Aggravated damage, from a combo. Or something else equally powerful. To me, that's about Essence 7, or so. Maybe even 8. However, in the spirit of goodness and light, I provide a suggestion. Can we hack that down to an instant, or a supplemental, or a reflexive? My hope would be reflexive, with a cost, say, 3 motes? Each one of those subtrees, then, would be a separate charm, each reflexive, costing 3 motes. I'd also like to suggest that you can't get more than 2 high in each tree. Requiring a 2-die stunt to hurt someone is hard, but doable. Requiring a 3-die requires you to be consistently cool, which just can't happen. Similarly with the stacked soaks. How's that for active suggestion? -- GregLink
First, let me say, thank you for the constructive criticism! I've made a 1.2 update.
Regarding your comments:
That should reduce your Essence pool by 30 motes permanently, not 5 (the reduction happens each time you purchase it; edited for clarity on that). And it would require you to buy the charm 6 times. How about this. I'm limiting the number of times you can take any of them to one at first, and then one more (up to the absolute maximum) per Essence dot above 6. So, at Essence 9, you can become invulnerable to all but 3-die stunts. Kinda like Superman, sans-Kryptonite. Also, I'm merging the Charm/Stunt progression so that at first, you get "stunts or charms," and then next purchase you choose only one of the two which hurts you, and then you get to require both to hurt you. Etc. Furthermore, you have misunderstood my intent with the magical materials section. I will edit that for clarity as well. As far as reducing the duration, sorry. That would defeat the point, in my mind; I build from the name. A Reflexive charm just isn't "eternal." - IanPrice, and yes, requiring 3-die stunts to hurt you makes you pretty much invincible. That's the whole point.
I like the 'fix', and I'm glad I demonstrated the lack of clarity regarding the 5m vs 30m thing. I'm happy with 1.2. -- GregLink, liking it, Especially the "like Superman at Ess 9" thing.

I just object to that Charm on the basis that it is 980+ words long. No single charm should be 980+ words long. This should be a rule. - Telgar

I concur. Why isn't it a minitree of five to ten different Charms? The multiple purchases and breadth of function would certainly indicate that it would work better that way...DeathBySurfeit
Because the mechanics were under development, and I didn't yet bother to come up with new names for the separate functions. I'll do this at some point. - IanPrice
Honestly, I prefer it this way. Otherwise, you have to repeat the fluff each time, and the typing, and other boilerplate junk. If you make it multiple charms,it would be like 3000 words. Compare the Banish spell in S&S to Countermagic(s) in the core book. -FlowsLikeBits who cares more for total length
Yes, FlowsLikeBits, it's true that the total number of words will increase if he re-writes it as 10 or so Charms. But so will the total understandability. Having 10+ charms jammed in under one heading is just overly complicated and annoying to read. It's far simpler to seperate them out. Since they ARE just iterations, the later ones can say "this is a derivitive of LAST CHARM." and cut down on excess flavor text. But on the whole a 980 word Charm is just bad. Bad. Bad like a badger. On acid. - Telgar

Nothing worthy to contribute, but... EGZ as the acronym... is that meant as a parody of DBZ, or did the charm mechanics just happen to turn out that way? ^_^
-- Darloth, grinning.

And I remove my laziness. Separated into 4 charms, one of which can be taken multiple times, and distilled to the mechanics I like most. The other mechanics have their places too, I'm sure, but they're less important to me. As for the DBZ reference, I noticed it in passing, and decided not to undo it, since it is hilarious. It's a good pun, because it wasn't intentional. - IanPrice

Very nice. I like the 2.0 version. I would drop the transformative effects of Brilliant Sunburst Transcendence, as they don't feel Solars to me, it seems like it would be more of Autochtonian or Lunar thing. Solars I feel should always look human. Big and glowy maybe, but human. Also, the whole craft instead of medicine thing seems like a pointless complication. Not big deal though, and very nice otherwise. -FlowsLikeBits
Eh, Autochthon came up with the original plans for all the Exalted anyway. My concept for BST is that it's based on tapping into the primal Solar Essence of invulnerability, which I figure is the same Essence that makes up Orichalcum. If you want to place a different restriction on it when you use it, then feel free. I'd recommend, since you also don't like making people glowy, preventing the character from gaining any benefit from wearing armor, since none of it is as sturdy as his transcendent flesh. My version fits with my interpretation of the setting material, though. - IanPrice
Make sense. There is plenty of room for interpretation of setting material in this area. I'd probalby interpret it the same way, but without the visible effects. I would point that the Craft thing may not be much of a restriction(personally, I don't think it's need for balance, but if fits the theme, cool ), in fact the trend in the lower charms is that it's probably faster to "fix" someone than heal them! Although by this Essence level, it probalby doesn't matter. -FlowsLikeBits
On a somewhat tangential note. Twice now you've noted that you defer to the core book even when what it says is only implied (Hearthstone Power Levels) verus Savant and Sorceror's Explicit instructions and stones. Do you really think the core book is the acme of the line? It's been my experience, most especially in charm trees, but in a few other glaring areas (Incarna at ess 8?!?, Artifacts, and Hearthstones) that while the core book was the first great big IDEA! and should be deferred to in terms of vision and setting, that the mechanical end of it has become much more efficient as the system is 'playtested' by all of us fans, and developers get feedback, and more time to examine things. - Scrollreader
I defer to the core book in my design because that's what White Wolf authors are instructed to do, for a simple, very good reason: you can't assume that anybody who may want to use your material will have anything other than the core book. That's all somebody ought to have to pick up to understand anything else they look at for the game.
When referring to Savant and Sorcerer, my meaning was not to oppose it to the core book. My meaning was to say that in this case, I did also have it as an additional reference. I would also mention it if, for instance, I were to use the errata on a charm that appears in the Player's Guide. If I were writing in an official book, I would also include the relevent errata, or the whole relevent charm, if such did not appear in the core book.
The mechanical end of the system is absolutely the least important part of it. The utility of material to anybody who wants to play the game is of utmost importance. Story integrity falls somewhere in the middle as well as coming first overall; probably it ends up tying with making sure anybody who plays the game can use the material. Therefore, the core book is ascendant. See where I'm coming from? - IanPrice
If this were a sample and submison for you to author a book, I would absolutely concur, being in that field myself. However, the point of posting a charm is for mechanical effect. I think if you'd have said "Hey, cool flavor text" followed by "after about essence so and so, these sors of things tend to happen" you could roll with the flavor text and setting arguement. But in actually designing a /charm/ and not say, a book or a chapter of one, sound mechanics are one of the most critical things. In fact, if you'll note that's what all the discussions have been about. Nobody is saying these are out of genre, or wrongbadnogoodfun. But it's the mechanics we're debating. And though I concur with you that the core book is where it all begins, if you only designed charms based on pre-existing charm mechanics there (You yourself used FF as a springboard) there would be precious little improvement or variation. - Scrollreader
See, that's exactly why we've all been arguing at cross purposes. I honestly care very little about the mechanics for their own sake. They're pretty, that's about it. I care what these charms would do to somebody's game. As I noted, yes, I used springboards from charms I liked in other books. But I'm less concerned with balancing my charms with the stuff in those books. Otherwise I would have made my charm Essence 1, Resistance 2, to start, like the Fair Folk charm, instead of going for more at once. Really, the original intent of these charms was just to excercise my brain a little bit... but now I've had all this highly interesting discussion. I may have to move it over so that the finished charms can stand on their own.
Anyway, as I said, I care about game impact. Conflicting with the power level of a Caste book charm or even a megasplatbook charm will have far less impact than conflicting with the core book. On the flip side, in and of themselves, these charms won't have even a tiny bit of impact on any game they're even allowed in, except possibly the first one. "Oh no, some character who's too powerful for our characters to reasonably try to fight in any case happens to actually be invunlerable!" And if I had consented to making the first one Essence 6, that would have knocked it out of the "anybody really caring" category too. After all, whose Exalted game ever goes that far? If mine does, I will do triple backflips in joy, because by then I will have learned to do them simply by absorbing coolness from my character. - IanPrice
Jumping into the tangent, I've gotta say that Incarna at Ess 8 makes sense to me. Much as the Primordials can be taken out by the Exalted, their creations, the Incarna, should theoretically be weaker. To me, Exalts are the end-all be-all of power level, due to the fact that they're essentially specific war-machines. Things like the Incaran, and Primordials are all 'well rounded' things, that get by quite fine at Ess 8. I mean, imagine what kind of scene-long perfect awareness charm the UCS can whip out at Ess 8. Then imagine the story power of an Essence 9 Zenith, informing the UCS that he's neglected his duties for too long, and inspiring the UCS to stand up and do something. Luckily, with the UCS's schtick being different than the Solar's, that means his Ess 8 charms are better at certain things, and worse at others. I, for one, would expect the UCS's melee charms to stink, but his Presence and Performance charms? Hoo boy. -- GregLink
Yes, because Exalted is the game where your God has a major crack habit, and you have to whip him back into shape. Heh. - IanPrice
My interpretation was that Essence for charm purposes only went to ten, but you could have Essence trait higher than that(and hence a larger pool). Thus the UCS might only have Ess 8 charms, but he might have an Essence in the 20+ range for determing his pool, etc. YMMV -FlowsLikeBits
My interpretation was that Essence pools for major iconic NPCs could be considered to be largely arbitrary, along with any of their other stats. Though once again... the number of games in which it matters has to be vanishingly small. - IanPrice
My interpretations was that "The Incarna will never enter into my games as actual, mechanically sound characters and should, therefore, be used exclusively for deus ex machina type effects. So their actual Essence score is probably something like ENOUGH TO DO WHAT I NEED THEM TO." Then I thought "Heh, I am using gods for deus ex machina things. Heh heh." -- OhJames with nothing to add, save some snark
Use Autochthon. :D -FlowsLikeBits 'cause it had to be said