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Wow, this rocks, Moxiane. I especially like "Absolute" and "Brittle" as keywords, there; very well chosen. -- Charlequin

The question comes up (and I've seen it happen): does an Indirect defense actually count as being of any given defense "type." An example would be Safety Among Enemies - is it Perfect, or is it Absolute-by-way-of-not-actually-being-a-dodge? I could certainly see an argument for the latter, since it relies on tricking your attacker into attacking someone else rather than simply getting out of the way. Anyway, with proper definition comes endless nitpicking.
This is an utterly brilliant, idea, by the way. Brilliant and absolutely necessary. Thank you for existing, Mox. =) - SMK

As far as my interpretation goes, if a Charm comes under a specific Ability, unless it specifically states otherwise then any defence it creates devolves to that ability. Thus Dodge Charms always create dodges, and the other abilities always create parries. One exception I can think of is that Dragon-Blood Thrown Charm that turns a ranged attack back at the attacker - I think that uses Dodge rather than Thrown (being 1000 miles away from my books at present I am not sure).
Again, if anyone can think of better definitions (conciseness is a virtue here, but is not abosultely necessary), better keywords, or simply definitions that I have missed (like "attack" - thanks willows) then add them in. - Moxiane

This is really good stuff! What about if there was a Charm that only defended against magical attacks (such as the Abyssal Bolts of Oblivion or the Solar Bolts of Doom)? Is there a good term for that? Anyone? Anyone? It would be Brittle, but in an inverse way... Elttirb, perhaps? B-) - Nikink

OK - so back with the books, and I am running into problems classifying a couple of Charms, namely Earthshaker Attack & Hungry Earth Strike (both Earth Dragon MA) - the Charm text seems to suggest that it both cases they should be Undodgeable and Unparryable and yet include the mechanisms for defence against them. Suggestions? Also, while I do plan to go through Abyssals and Sidereals and do the classification for them - Lunars I don't know at all well enough to attempt (plus the Lunar Charm trees give me headaches) - Moxiane
If they are , they can be listed as that, as per the above examples, but a new term is needed for having alternate defences available. Maybe Aberrant? So Earthshaker Attack is Undodgeable, Unparryable, Aberrant.
Just a thought. Nikink

Should their be an explicit category for "semi-perfect" effects, such as Impeding the Flow? That is, effects which are Perfect in application except against other Perfect effects? As a complication, though, it's really only appropriate for defense effects; if it were applied it to offensive Charms, it's Perfect except against Perfect and semi-perfect defenses, which creates another layer of "Perfection" (albeit in a different direction than is usually hypothesized), which should probably be avoided, though defining the term makes it implicitly possible. At any rate, there's a word that means "second-best" that would be ideal for the term, but which also doesn't immediately spring to mind. _Wohksworth

In this situation, how about just using the term Complicated? Sounds right for ItF, given the debates that have raged over it! B-) Nikink
The term you are looking for is probably Penultimate. However I just raised a possibility on the WW boards. That is, what is the interaction of an Unparryable or Undodgeable attack versus a Shield. Also, how do you classify the effects of Charms such as Snake Form? I would also suggest that you go for Unblockable instead of Unparryable, since the former is an actual term whereas I have never heard Unparryable until just now. Also, I would suggest Automatic instead of Non-rolled, just because the former sounds better to me. - Epsilon
Good call on Unblockable and Automatic. They sound better.
What about an attack that ignores cover? Exalted treats Shields as a type of cover, so Unblockable / Unparryable attacks should still be affected, shouldn't they? -Nikink
PS: Perhaps Charms like Snake Form should be called Reducing if they reduce attack dice rolled (this term could also apply to attack charms that reduce defense pools - like many Abyssal charms), or Difficults if they add to the successes required to hit?
PPS: And, for those charms that require a Virtue roll of some sort to allow an attack, I suggest Virtuous.
PPPS: And... again... Reducing Charms can get further classified into those that can subtract dice to a minimum of the opponent's Essence, and those that can explicitely reduce the opposing dice-pool to zero. For the latter, I suggest Greater-Reducing.
PPPPS: Actually... maybe Reducing+ would be a better term, and it would then come directly after Reducing alphabetically, thus keeping them together...
Frankly, I favor Entropic as the keyword, as Neph refers to them. -- ReallyBored
Those are called, "I can't believe it's not perfect" effects. If that's too long, then I think "Semi-perfect" works fine. -Fifth
"Semi-Perfect" would be fine, were it not redundant. The point of this is to try to create a small pool of precisely defined terms (Automatic is better than Non-rolled, though - as is Unblockable, Charm classifications updated). Since ItF is classed as Automatic it always works except against Perfect attacks, simply because it doesn't itself have the Perfect keyword. Thus the difference between Seven Shadow Evasion (Automatic, Perfect), which will allow the character to avoid an Accuracy Without Distance-enhanced attack and Impeding the Flow (Automatic) which won't. The application of multiple simple keywords is better than using a single, complicated one.
As for attacks which bypass cover (shields are cover, hence the similarity of mechanic), I would suggest that unless the Charm text specifically says otherwise that the cover penalty from a shield is always applied, even to otherwise Unblockable or Undodgeable attacks. Note that the cover penalty will not stop a Perfect attack, since they can hit even with 0 successes. - Moxiane
Ok, that's cool. But, what do you think of the terms proposed above? And, should there be a term for Attacks that bypass cover, and perhaps, Defenses that create cover? Nikink
Added a provisional term for cover-bypassing attacks (Seeking) as well as a more binary definition of Perfect. My aesthetics are offended by overlap, and tightly-defined terms are much better. The current version of Perfect overlaps too much with Automatic, hence my new version - although a Direct Perfect defence would be strange, the current definitions would not allow for one to be constructed. - Moxiane
A possible Direct Perfect (also Conditional) defence could be Dragonfly Finds Mate. The Charm text seems to suggest that any projectile could be turned aside by it - and Perfect defences with wierd effects seem to be a Dragon-Blooded thing. - Moxiane
Non-canonical, but another Direct Perfect defense could be a SSE-style counterattack. That is, a dodge-counter that is rolled against the incoming attack. If the rolled defense reduces the attack to below 0 successes, the remainder are applied as a counterattack. If the rolled defense does not defeat the attack, it is still dodged if dodgeable (as per SSE). -- ReallyBored
Cool, Seeking is good. Therefore Covering seems adequate for defences that create cover. Not that I can think of any at this point in time... Nikink
Actually, Covering sounds like a good catchall term for defences that raise the difficulty of the attack, so long as it doesn't matter what the reason for the increas in difficulty is, I think this would work. I will point out now that I do think it's necesary to know the reason for a rise in difficulty... mostly so it's easier to tell which Charms will defeat it... but also cuz I'm a completist! B-) Nikink

Added another term for defensive Charms - Conditional. This means that the defence only works against certain kinds of attacks, or when certain other conditions are met. Examples would be Vengeful Gust Counterattack (as given above) or Snake Body Technique. There is no need to define conditions beyond this point, that's what Charm text is for - this allows for defences that only work against Charm-enhanced attacks, or against ranged attacks. Also, this renders the Brittle keyword redundant - unless there's a good reason to keep it, I think it's no longer needed. - Moxiane

Sounds good, but if Conditional exists it will become a bit of a catchall, and may end up being a bit of a dumping ground for Charms that could otherwise be defined as a seperate type. I think Brittle was (is) a good term for that type of charm, even though there are only two Charms (that I can think of) of that type published so far. With the term conditional, Brittle no longer becomes necessary, and two easily definable charms get tucked away with a grab bag of others. I suppose if we can make a list of every defensive Charm that would be Conditional, we may be able to sub-define and bring out common qualities. Ok, I end my rambling train of thought now... nikink I guess I'm just concerned that with Conditional no other definitions are required. All Charms are Conditional. And that defeats the purpose of this exercise, doesn't it?
Good points. The purpose of Conditional is more to circumstances where either the Charm only works against certain kinds of attack (Vengeful Gust Counterattack & ranged attacks, Snake Body Technique & MA/Melee attacks) or will not work against certain kinds of attack (Portenous Comet Deflection Mode) - and which are not covered by the other keywords. - Moxiane
Except PCDM is covered by a perfectly good, and apt, term already. And if it was the only Charm like that, sure class it at Conditional. But it's not. There's at least one other (whatever that resistance Charm is). I think it's a good term and we should only use Conditional for charms that are 'one offs' in terms of mechanics. What do you think? nikink

Perhaps you should include a term for defense that notes whether it applies against attacks you are unaware of, maybe Aware or Omniscient. This becomes somewhat complicated for charms like Serenity in Blood, which are Automatic and Absolute, but only Conditionally Aware. - Myrlan

Well - the original purpose that I started this for was to hammer out definitions of terms that WhiteWolf has left less than concrete, such as an exact definition (in game terms) of "perfection", so as to make the interactions of various combat Charms much easier to interpret. The Charm text as regards the need of awareness (or lack of), has generally been pretty clear and not a cause of some of the ReallyHeatedDiscussions that certain other Charms have been a cause of :) By all means, add definitions - but I would suggest that you really only need one, since the remainder can be defined by being not it. - Moxiane
PS: Serenity in Blood is Absolute, Automatic & Perfect, since it can defeat Perfect attacks - making it a somewhat more expensive version of HGD.
One note, that Serenity in Blood is capable of handling suprise attacks, where HGD is not. So when you don't notice that meteor falling on your head, you can still try and parry it. ^_^ - haren

Hmm. My own thoughts on the matter.. I think your definitions Rock, Mox. ;) My own thoughts, so far, have been about Extra-action type charms. Don't they get a classification? I would break it into those charms which let you buy, or give you, a specific extra action - Byu a dodge, or gain 3 melee attacks, or whatever - those wich allow you an extra action within a specific format - you get 3 actions which can be a parry or dodge, for example - and extra 'turn' charms, where you get 3 completely independent actions: I can also see a subset of charms that you could develop (I don't think there are any extant examples) Wherein you get, oh, a number of combat actions per turn equal o your essence: these can be ddges, melee attacks, or whatever, but it still only counts as one turn. THat produces 4 kind of Extra Action... Limited - A specific action. Specific - a specific method. Broad - any kind of action relevant to the charm, and Perfect Extra - the extra turns, a la Charcoal march of spiders charm. (if you don't consider that a 'perfect 'extra action charm, what is? ;)) - Molikai

The (until recently) unstated purpose of this page is to find a clearer understanding of the ways Charms interact by defining them rigorously; EA Charms do not interact with other Charms in a way that is not already clearly-defined, so this is unnecessary. - willows

Maybe you should add a new Charm classification - Visible, or some such. It would be for Charms that produce an Essence display regardless of spending Personal Essence, like Rout-Stemming Gesture. Resplendence

Interesting idea, but what does it have to do with the way that Charms interact? - Moxiane
Not much, but CharmTerminology suggests a general classification system for Charms, not just Charm interaction. I'm sure you can think of similar classifications for funky Sidereal or Fair Folk Charms. Resplendence

I'd suggest the term Persistent, Insistent, Relentless or Tenacious instead of Seeking. I also think Limited would be less ambiguous than Conditional. Wordman

Persistent already has a very specific accepted meaning in Charm discussion, and should probably be added to the list for defenses (would Hundred Razor Circle be a persistent offense?). I second the addition of Visible as a keyword. Extra Action Charms should probably have keywords specifying the use of the actions (i.e. Attacks, Dodges or MA Attacks, Splittable, Independent). There are some Charms that explicitly can be activated before initiative despite not being Reflexive Charms (Two Swords Technique from CB:N comes to mind), so a keyword might be added for that. "Reflexive" isn't suitable, and "reflexively activated" isn't concise.
And I will note that the text of Safety Among Enemies lacks the word "perfect," so I lump it in with Impeding the Flow as far as perfection goes. No more from me on that subject. ~ WaiyaddoNoDan
Very few of the DragonBloodedCharms actually have the word perfect in their descriptions, despite this being their intent. It is a feature of the Terrestrial Exalted that their access to perfection requires them to jump through hoops or otherwise deal with conditions on it. Portentous Comet Deflection Mode, Safety Among Enemies and Dragonfly Finds Mate (definition updated) all adhere to this theme - perfection with conditions. 'Sides, removing the Perfect from SAE makes it a fairly poor Charm. - Moxiane

Just for the sake of pedantry, a Direct Perfect defense is fairly easy; simply draw up a Dipping Swallow-like Charm with the added note "If the number of successes achieved on the parry exceeds the number of attack successes, the attack is always negated, regardless of effects which might otherwise cause it to strike." What's actually a nonsensical term is Direct or Indirect applied to Automatic, as Direct or Indirect require comparison of a number, and Automatic does not involve numbers. - Unknown Poster

Just for the sake of pedantry, when inserting an indented comment, it is ill-advised to insert said under the wrong higher-level entry. (Said aberrant formatting corrected. - Ed.) Your (unsigned) entry has little or nothing to do with mine, and thus does not belong, indented, immediately under it. Instead, it should be inserted under the entry to which it refers. This is basic outlining, something we all should have learned in grade school. It is also considerably less confusing to the reader, who in this case is left to conclude that your remark is in fact apropos of nothing.
Secondly, and also for the sake of gloried pedantry, Sign Your Posts! Failure to do so, while providing you with a screen of anonymity, is rude to the other voices in this forum, denying them a means to effectively respond, positively or negatively, to your comments. In effect, it turns your comments, no matter their incidental relevance or value, into more spam. -Suzume (who is feeling pissed because she ISN'T asleep right now, nor can she afford to be. >.> )

I'd consider it sensible to retain keywords that are already commonly used in Charm discussion, such as "applicability-trumping" instead of "absolute." It's less concise, true, but I already think of HGD as an "automatic applicability-trumping perfect defense," not an "automatic absolute perfect defense." Also, "absolute" is a little to close to "perfect" in meaning for it to be appropriate. IMHO, of course. Anyone else with me? ~ WaiyaddoNoDan

No. Where I could I invented terms that had not been used previously in Charms for the simple reason that a) a single word is simpler to remember, and b) by using previously-unused words I would force people to think about what I meant. "Absolute" is fine - and if I could have come up with different and/or better words for unblockable, undodgeable and perfect I would done that, too. - Moxiane