These are AbyssalCharms.
Breath-Catching Imprecation (Ikselam)
Cost: 2 motes per die, 1 willpower Duration: Instant Type: Reflexive Min Linguistics: 4 Min Essence: 2 Prereqs: Peerless Fluency Style
By carefully inflecting his words, and infusing them with baleful magic, the Abyssal can twist anything he says into an efficacious curse. The target of the curse feels her vision dim, her knees go weak, and a sense of icy dread grip her heart; although it only lasts for an instant, it is enough to make her hand falter, or her voice catch, at a crucial moment.
This power must be activated after the target declares an action, but before she rolls. For every two motes spent, the target loses one die from her pool for that action. There is no limit to the number of dice subtracted, but the target's pool cannot be reduced below her permanent Essence score.
Withered Seed Censure (Moxiane)
Cost: 8 motes, 1 Willpower Type: Simple Duration: Instant Min. Linguistics: 5 Min. Essence: 2 Prerequisites: Breath-Catching Imprecation
The necrotic Essence of the Underworld flows through every part of the Abyssal's being, tainting his very words with its dark power, enabling the utterance of powerful curses such as the Withered Seed Censure. When spoken (the victim does not have be to able to understand the language used, or even hear it, but they must be within earshot) it infects the target with the Essence of death, rendering them almost incapable of producing life.
Mechanically the Abyssal makes a Charisma + Linguistics roll with a difficulty equal to the target's permanent Essence. If successful the victim of this curse is the Abyssal's Essence times less likely to conceive a child from that point on - and any child that is born of or fathered by the victim will be sickly and weak. For the Dragon-Blooded and others beings whose power can pass on through the blood the Withered Seed Censure subtracts the Essence of the Abyssal at the moment of speaking from any dice-pool to determine whether the child with Exalt or otherwise inherit power. The Withered Seed Censure has no effect on beings with an Essence higher than the Abyssal, and should the affected being ever increase his permanent Essence then the curse is ended then also.
Skill Blighting Rebuke (Darloth)
Cost: 7 motes, 1 Willpower (possibly 1xp) Type: Simple Duration: Scene (and possibly Permanant) Min. Linguistics: 5 Min. Essence: 3 Prerequisites: Breath-Catching Imprecation
By insulting a target who has just used a skill in the Abyssal's sight, the Abyssal can demoralise them so much that their performance at that skill actually suffers as a result. The target must make a reflexive willpower roll with a difficulty equal to twice the Abyssal's essence, and they may always channel conviction for this roll. If they fail, they lose the Abyssal's essence in dots from that skill until the end of the scene. This is not treated as a dice-pool penalty, it actually removes those dots. Thus, if the target only has a skill of 2 and has 3 dots subtracted, they will still end up with a skill of zero. Remember that unskilled mortals suffer a -2 die penalty to any rolls, and so even skilled craftsmen or warriors are often reduced to incompetant fools in the harsh aftermath of the Abyssal's scorn.
As an option declared before any of these charm rolls are made, the Abyssal can opt to speak an insult so vile and twisted that it will take permanant root in the mind of the target, forever casting a dark shadow over their use of the skill. Mechanically, the Abyssal makes a Manipulation + Linguistics check at a difficulty equal to the number of dots the target has in the afflicted skill to invoke the charm, but if this check succeeds and the target fails to resist, the Abyssal spends 1 experience point in addition to the charm cost. The target is affected as normal for the scene, but even after the scene has passed, one of their dots in that ability is gone, never to return. The ability can be bought up again with experience as normal. However, once a target has lost a dot in an ability to this charm, they may never lose another dot in that ability permanantly, although the normal effect works as usual. They may still lose dots in other abilities if the Abyssal decides to invoke the charm against them.
All of the effects of this charm are a mind-altering effect. If the target is utterly immune to these effects, then this charm will not effect them. If the 2nd permanant version is used on a target, and later they become immune to mind altering techniques, the lost dot does not return to them. This charm does not work against targets with a higher permanant Essence than the user.
Charm-Darkening Implication (TedPro)
Cost: 5 motes, 1 Willpower Type: Reflexive Duration: Special Min. Linguistics: 5 Min. Essence: 3 Prerequisites: Withered Seed Censure, Skill Blighting Rebuke
Used in immediate response to the use of a Charm. Requires a Manipulation + Linguistics roll. The deathknight speaks a few quick words, and hints at terrible consequences of that Charm's use, bringing a chill and a doubt to the Anima of the one who had just used that Charm. In the unconscious mind of the victim, the Charm they have just used will, in some unspeakable way, have dire long-term consequences. This hesitation increases the cost of the victim to use that Charm by 1 Willpower. Each time the victim uses the Charm, the victim can make a Conviction roll. When the number of accumulated successes on these Conviction rolls exceeds the Abyssal's successes on the original Manipulation + Linguistics roll, the curse is lifted and the duration expires. The duration also expires if the Abyssal Exalt ceases to commit the Essence for Charm-Darkening Implication. Each victim can only have one Charm-Darkening Implication in effect at a time.
Essence-Eclipsing Shadow Technique (Telgar)
Cost: 10 motes, 2 Willpower Type: Simple Duration: Special Min. Linguistics: 5 Min. Essence: 4 Prerequisites: Charm-Darkening Implication
By screaming a invocation of the Malfeans at her enemies, an Abyssal can taint the very Essence of her opponent. For as long as the motes and willpower spent for this Charm or the target's current Essence pools are totally depleted the victim suffers from a limited form of the Abyssal curse of Resonance. Using the Resonance Effects Table in Exalted: the Abyssal, determine the type of effect created by the tainted Essence. Every 5 motes of Essence spent counts as 1 Resonance for the purposes of determining what kind of effect is created. The Iconic Anima of the target is also corrupted, appearing in darkened shades and taking on a haggered or horrific aspect for the duration of the Charm.
Soul-Wracking Needle Curse</b> (Jabberwocky)
<b>Cost: 12 motes, 2 Willpower 1 Lethal Health Level Duration: Instant Type: Simple Min. Thrown: 5 Min. Linguiatics: 5 Min. Essence: 4 Prereqs: Burrowing Bone Maggot, Charm-Darkening Implication
The Abyssal enhances her weapon with a whispered curse and throws it. Once thrown, the original returns to the Abyssal's hand in a trick of shadow, while a simulacrum of it continues, trailed by maledictions written in a forgotten Malfean tongue. This attack is unparryable, and inflicts one, and only one, level of aggravated damage on a successful attack, as the curse wraps the target's body and sears itself through skin and onto bone. A matching curse is burnt onto the chosen weapon, its purpose and target clear for all who gaze it. The fate of a character struck with Soul-Stitching Needle becomes muddied, save for one certainty -- that he is destined to die by the weapon which struck him.
While under the auspice of the curse, attacks with the fated weapon made in range against the target will add the Abyssal's Essence in successes to hit and in automatic damage. The target of the curse struggles to escape his fate, and may only defend against this attack with the use of Charms. Unlike the initial attack, it is the Abyssal's burden to reclaim her weapon after each subsequent attack. A character slain by this Charm leaves no ghosts, their Po and Hun consumed by Oblivion.
The curse is broken in a year and a day, or the instant a character other than the fated target is struck by the weapon, whether or not it inflicts damage. The level of Aggravated damage taken by the target is healed if it has not previously, while the weapon's branding seeks host on the Abyssal, inflicting one Aggravated damage, but no other lingering effects. An Abyssal may only have one Soul-Wracking Needle Curse invoked at a given moment.
I don't want to hog two themes in a row and subject you to more swedish perversions than your innocent little minds can handle, so someone else take the new theme. Resplendence
I don't have a Charm to start this off (although I probably could if desired), but I'd very much like to see people's thoughts on Lunar tactics, diplomacy, and other non-bestial social charms, as this seems to be the big gap E:L left. -- AntiVehicleRocket
Lunar Charm Cascades follow a structure that is not conducive to this format. They go in too many directions to handle a good-shaped tree with just 5 Charms. Freakish Lunars...I offer, instead, this! - Telgar
- I don't think that's true. Lunar Charms are totally amenable to focused subtrees. The main difference between them and other splats' Charms is that the branching does not occur at the root level -- there aren't a lot of entry-level Charms, but then there are several self-contained branches which occur after you go down a level or two. For example, the tentacle charms, the poison spit charms, etc. _Ikselam also notes that CharmRelay is not wedded to "all Charms must be from same tree!"
- Yes, Lunar Charm trees are messy, but what's wrong with a slightly-messy tree in light of, say, multi-caste themes of the past? Eh, well, it was just a suggestion. Abyssal Charms are also good. -- AntiVehicleRocket
Is "Curses" the new theme? Also, I have no trouble adding non-bestial Lunar charms. - Miedvied
- I think non-bestial Lunar Charms would be kind of like non-death-related Abyssal Charms. _Ikselam
- To clarify, by "non-bestial Lunar social charms," I meant "social charms not focused around raw intimidation and calling packs of animals." There is precious little of this sort of thing, especially considering that there were at one point three social Lunar castes. -- AntiVehicleRocket (who freely confesses to marching to the beat of a different Kite Flute on this)
Agreement. Lunars do beastial stuff. You just have to EXPAND that into more abstract relationships then E:tL did. - Telgar
- I also think that once you look beyond the combat Charms, Lunar Charms have plenty of abstraction and subtlety. You aren't just limited to shapeshifting your ears to hear better. You can also do crazy nonsense like manipulate people's Virtues with the sheer force of your animal charisma. _Ikselam
On topic... not sure if this Charm is too powerful or not powerful enough. I think caps and costs may need to be tweaked. _Ikselam
- Ikselam, is this supposed to be able to subtract dice for any given action? If so, it's potentially very powerful -- equivalent to a universal die-adder for Solars, if I'm recalling correctly. While I'm not adverse to powerful Linguistics Charms (about time!), this may be a little much. -- AntiVehicleRocket
- It does indeed subtract from any action. Hence the high cost. _Ikselam was thinking of putting a cap on it.
- If you're a Terrestrial, With One Mind kicks Sidereal (star... asterik... ha ha, I made a funny). I think this Charm needs a cap, or we might need to go back into the fun math of the early Solar charms (I liked those Charms! Damn PG!). Charge five motes per two (extra subtractions are lost) and cap at Essence + Linguistics or start at one, plus one per die lost. $.02 &Arafelis
I'd like to humbly request that the next theme will be high-Essence DragonBloodedCharms , as discussed in CharmCreationGuide. That is, if there ever comes a new theme with the slow pace of innovation here... Resplendence
I'd like to second that request. I tried to push us toward it by starting Avoiding Persuit off at 3, but failed. - Telgar
Re: Withered Seed Censure -- I like the effect of this Charm, but I don't like it apparently being a perfect effect. I would be reluctant to let it affect anyone of greater permanent Essence than the Abyssal, and I'd also be tempted to give the target a Resistance roll (perhaps Essence + Resistance, as the target's living Essence rejects the infestation of death-Essence?) against the effect. It should also probably be made explicit as to whether or not this Charm affects spirits and similar beings -- it implies as much, but it's a little vauge.
I'm also not totally sure if I like the given mechanic for increasing dislikelihood of conception. I know it can generally be abstracted, but it makes things a little overcomplicated if someone insists on rolling dice for this. The Exaltation-chance reduction is fairly elegant, though. -- AntiVehicleRocket
One idea is to have the effect last until the target raises his permanent Essence. It also seems like this is something which shouldn't affect targets whose Essence exceeds your own. _Ikselam
- The goal for Withered Seed Censure was for it to be kinda like a classic curse - although depending on the couple having to try three or four times as often to conceive might not actually be a curse :) But yeah, it is supposed to affect anything: the Abyssal points, curses and then the victim foreverafter has a little Underworld essence in their soul - making children much more difficult to have. Some kind of test is probably not out of order, however... I figure since it's a Linguistics Charm and the curse is spoken a Charisma + Linguistics roll at a difficulty of the target's Essence is perhaps the simplest way.
- The one-over-your-Essence mechanic, while clunky, seemed the best way to simulate it for normal children - any other ideas would be nice. The die-subtraction for Dragon-blooded, God-blooded, etc... just came to me, though - the way all the best thoughts do. :) And, yes, it shouldn't affect anyone with an Essence higher than the Abyssals - edited to say so. - Moxiane
- Hmm. I still think I would prefer a target-based resistance mechanic (i.e. the target has to roll to resist, but the Abyssal doesn't have to make a check for it to work), but that's nitpicking at this point. The revision solves things fairly nicely. -- AntiVehicleRocket
This theme seems very hard to think up charms for, and I notice it's going fairly slowly, so I added this idea. I'm still not sure if it's a little overpowered for Essence 3, so feel free to bump it up to essence 4 if you think it needs it. Finally, I hope it's okay to branch from the original charm, as it doesn't quite fit following on from the Withered Seed Censure.
To my inexperienced self, the Charm seems mostly fine... I'd probably reduce the Willpower roll difficulty to the Abyssal's Essence, and require a Manipulation + Linguistics roll at a difficulty of the target's Ability for both versions of the Charm. And I don't see why they should be immune to all future skill drops for that Ability... if an Abyssal wants to cripple a mortal, he should feel free, and most Exalts are gonna whack the Abyssal anyway if he sticks around to try and use it again. - LeumasWhite
re: Skill Blighting Rebuke I wouldn't object to removing the Permanant mode of the Charm entirely, but making its use on Essence 1 mortals always be permanant. The permanant function is not critical to the Charm, and is more a malicious afterthought -- I'd be hesistent to toss it on PCs, and, if I did, would be disappointed that it lost its future functionality from that one application. _Jabberwocky
- I like that change, personally. The permanent effect is a good way for Abyssal Exalted to show how cruel and callous they are by dashing the knowledge and wisdom of hard-working people to shreds, but it seems unecessarily complicated, and seems to just serve as an out-of-game annoyance for Exalted, especially PCs who may have just permanently lost access to a handful of favorite Charms. - TedPro
Speaking of losing access to a favorite Charm, just added another one. Too strong? Too weak? I really don't know. -TedPro
Curses! Too late to be the fifth Charm! That's fine -- it's not the most logical extension of the Prerequisites, so I'm happier with it as a black sheep sixth Charm. _Jabberwocky