Thus Spake Zarataylor/DragonArmorClarification
Elemental Lens, and Material Bonuses
izzylobo - 02/07/2004 06:25:06
Elemental Dragon Armor comes with an Elemental Lens built in. If it's permanently broken, that's a Storyteller call - while I might use that as an offset to justify reducing the armor to Artifact 3 in a limited situation, I wouldn't make that a general-purpose rule - among other things, the lens could always be removed and replaced with a sufficient Craft:First Age Weapons roll.
Dragon Armor is already as good as it's gonna get - don't apply any modifiers for material. In this, they are akin to Warstriders - the material bonuses are subsumed into the overall design. (additionally, I'd assume at least small amounts of other Magical Materials are used in their design in various places - there's a lot of technomagical widgety stuff between the armor plates and the padding of those armors, I'd assume).
Fire Dragon Armour Claws
izzylobo - 02/08/2004 08:15:42
> phaide_V2 > Outcaste rules! But I do have a question regarding the Armors of the Immaculate Dragons. Under the description of The Most Fearsome Armor of the Fire Dragon it says that the fire claws the armor creates can be used with martial arts. Huh? Did I miss something?? Can these armors be used with martial arts? And if so will they allow form charms.
Dragon Armor is armor, and follows all of the normal rules for interaction between Charms and Armor.
The fire claws created by the Most Fearsome Armor of the Fire Dragon are treated as Martial Arts weapons, the same way Hook Swords or 7-Section Staffs are - you can use either Melee or Martial Arts to wield them. I'd likely allow a Martial Art that allowed the use of Tiger Claws to use the Fire Claws as preferred weapons, but that's not official errata.
Number of Suits of Armour
izzylobo [2004-02-13 at 22:08:51]
> GUTB1 > On the issue of the Dragon Armors, G. C. Grabowski came out onto the rpg.net forums, and stated that they were like Panther tanks in midevil France.
This is not true - he said that here.
> GUTB1 > Only highly-specialized alchemist-intellectuals could fasion spare parts by hand, and even they do not fully comprehend how they work. I'd imagine there is a slow attrition of these units due to damage and wear that nobody knows how to fix anymore.
This is certainly not true - they have a repair rating, someone who meets the qualifications can repair the armor, if they've had exposure to the concepts behind them (so Realm - yes. Lookshy - yes. Sidereals - Yes. Lunars - Yes in some cases). If they haven't (lack of Craft:First Age Weapons, lack of specific exposure to First Age powered armor), they are operating at a penalty, trying to figure things out as they go along - still not impossible, but more difficult.
> GUTB1 > It is certainly not possible to actually make these. In the present age, Exalted smithing capability is limited to hunks of magical material with some minor sorcery attached.
I'm pretty sure this isn't true, at least in Lookshy (which was able to build Skywolf two centuries ago, and could still build one today, at the cost of stopping all other technomagical production and seriously impeding their use of Sorcerer-Technicians for a decade or two), and likely in the Realm as well - if nothing else, the Sidereals almost certainly can produce them.
Dragon Armor is resource intensive, and it requires substantial amounts of time, from a dedicated and highly skilled team of Sorcerer-Engineers, to produce. Each Dragon Armor suit produced represents a lot of effort that could be put into other work instead - including repairing and maintaining the existing suits.
Which means that, on the whole, the number of Dragon Armor suits has probably been declining, slowly, through the last four centuries or so (the resource wars of the third century resulted in a lot of equipment being lost, as did the Fae Invasion, in the Scavenger Lands. In the Realm, the lack of focus on technomagical gear (leading to a lack of trained technicians and engineers), combined with the pretty intense wars the Realm has been in (wars of occupation and subjugation are worse on Dragon Armor than blitzkrieg tactics), has resulted in a far faster drop in their deployment, to the point where they are probably on a level with Warstriders - highly uncommon pieces of war machinery, deployed in small numbers.
"In the Realm, the lack of focus on technomagical gear (leading to a lack of trained technicians and engineers)..." Why would the Realm have placed less emphasis on technomagic? Some weird sort of pride that compels them to trust in the force of arms of their Dragon-Blooded coterie? Surely not even the Realm could be that arrogant. - DigitalSentience
It would be justifiable arrogance. Compare the resources and time and effort it goes into building one gunzosha suit as compared to building one daiklaive. Lookshy, strapped for population (relative to the Realm) powers up everyone it can (making the gunzosha worth putting resources into.) The Realm, on the other hand, for the cost of one gunzosha can probably put together 2-5 Daiklaives. The Realm has 5 daiklaives, it equips 5 DB's. Lookshy has 5 Daiklaives... well, maybe it equips 3 DB's, and then has 2 daiklaives it just can't put to use, because it just doesn't have as many DB's as the Realm. The Realm doesn't need technomagic so much because it's got, well, a horde of demigods. It gets better results issuing basic artifact equipment to more db's than it does issuing more potent equipment to fewer DB's; they rely on numbers. Lookshy doesn't have those numbers, so it has to rely on powering up it's smaller amount of forces to get tactical efficiency. I'm sure I could have said that more concisely. - Miedvied
Then there's the whole "KNOW THY PLACE, MORTAL!" aspect of the Realm and its society. Even though I'm sure the Realm has some gunzosha armor lying about somewhere in the Imperial Manse or something, they'd never let any mortal actually use the stuff, lest he begin to think himself above his ordained station in this life. Lookshy Immaculatism, as far as I remember, isn't as stomp-on-the-mortal-ish, plus there's the fact that they just don't have enough DBs, which is the numbers argument again. :) - KitBox
To me, it just seems unbelievable. The Realm has hugely more resources than Lookshy. I would think that given that Lookshy has demonstrated the Realm can't beat it without duplicating its technologies, then the Realm would duplicate them and use them to crush Lookshy. If Lookshy can make and repair equipment, the Realm certainly ought to be able to. I could see them not building gunzosha armor because of the whole 'keep Mortals down' ideology, but if Lookshy can make all this stuff, so could the Realm, and the repeated kicking of the Realm's ass at the hands of Lookshy ought to have provided incentive for it. - JohnBiles
For one thing, the Realm *doesn't* have a massive resource advantage. If you read Manacle and Coin and the Dragon-Blooded fatsplat, you'll see just how precarious the current economic situation in the Realm is. Lookshy doesn't have the humongous population working rice paddies that the Realm does, but it's got a much more stable (and far less divided) economy. After all, when one says "The Realm can..." or "The Realm can't..." what one actually means is, "The Thirteen Great Houses," and the thirteen great houses aren't working together. They never were; the Empress used to simply direct their infighting as best to benefit the Realm. Moreover, while Lookshy and the Realm can both certainly make and repair it - why would the Realm go into the work of juicing up their mortals with Gunzosha, when they can put the same amount of resources into putting a single daiklaive into the hands of a Dragon-Blood, who would then wipe the floor with a pair of Gunzoshas? It's important to remember that Lookshy simply can't field a force as large or as potent as the DB's; it's also important to note that Lookshy hasn't repeatedly kicked the Realm's ass. It's repeatedly repelled invasion. There's a major difference between the two. History has shown that a much, much smaller force can hold off a much larger one when playing defense if it has certain tactical advantages, which Outcastes and the other books have gone out of their way to emphasize that Lookshy possesses. The very least of which is the Maiden of Battles' decrees that no Sidereal is to screw with Lookshy's fate, which happens to take a lot of oomph out of the Realm, given their major Bronze Faction backing is no doubt a great big helper in their conquests everywhere else. - Miedvied
What would be completely reasonable is that the Empress didn't want people to be creating these sorts of things, or figuring out greater and more powerful technomagical secrets. She has to balance a want to conquer, with a need to restrict just how powerful her own children become so that she can remain in power. Also the Realm can defeat Lookshy, the problem is that it will take time and repeated attempts. Lookshy has used their WMDs to win wars against the Realm while the Realm has not replied in turn. Lookshy will run out of those, and at that point, had the Empress been around to run things, they could have been defeated by her forces. -BogMod