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VBoS needs a temporary conversion because seriously, nobody whose character uses VBoS is going to put using the style on hold until Sids 2e comes out. I don't have STC and I hear that one's conversion has problems anyways.

Grumble grumble. Can someone sum up what STC2e gives for this style so I can compare? Oh, willows says JiAS should allow perfects parries and dodges to generate motes. This will ratchet up the power level of the style. Pick and choose according to the power level you want.

Done. Gorram, Giant Robots are so much easier.

Secrets of Future Strife

You have foreseen this conflict and you are prepared.

For your first Join Battle roll in the scene, you can convert (Wits+Awareness) dice in your Join Battle roll into automatic successes. (This is pretty much your entire pool unless you magically enhance it further.)

Flight of Mercury

5m. Reflexive. Combo-OK. One scene.
You have foreseen where you need to be and you are effortlessly there.

Your Move action now has the same rate as your Dash action, including the minimum rate. You never need to use the Dash action again while this charm is active.

Joy in Adversity Stance

5m. Reflexive. Combo-OK. One scene.
You have foreseen the difficult time ahead and you exult in overcoming it.

When you apply your DV against an attack and succeeds in negating the attack, roll Essence dice. You gain 2m per success.

Blade of The Battle Maiden

1m+, 2wp. Simple (Speed 5). Obvious. One scene.
You have foreseen what is required to defeat the enemy and you are thus armed.

Spend up to (MA x 4) motes. For each mote you spend, you can improve the Accuracy, Defense, Damage, or Rate of a natural weapon except for clinches by 1 for the scene. Or you can improve a single type of this style's form weapons at the cost of 2m/point. You can improve the Accuracy and Damage of clinches at 2m/point but not its Defense nor Rate. No single rating improvement may exceed MA+Essence. At the beginning of each action (your action), you can reflexively reallocate the points and choose which weapon is improved, natural or otherwise. If you improve a natural weapon, you can freely switch between inflicting Lethal or Bashing anytime (this also natural weapons parry lethal damage when applicable).

Violet Bier of Sorrows Form

5m. Simple. Form-Type. One scene.
And thus, fate becomes reality.

Each successful MA attack inflicts one point of virtue damage (attacker's choice) that heals at the rate of 1/day. Attacker may use MA rating as minimum damage of said attack.

Death Parrying Stroke

2m/hl. Reflexive (Step 10). Combo-OK. Instant.
Appealing to the Maidens, you rewrite fate. What was fated, isn't.

If you applied your Parry DV and failed, you may negate damage successes for 2m each.

Life Severing Blow

2m/hl. Reflexive. (Step 8). Combo-OK. Instant.
Appealing to the Maidens, you rewrite fate. What wasn't fated, is.

Convert damage dice up to your Essence into automatic damage successes for 2m each.

Metal Storm

3m/attack. Extra Action. Combo OK. Instant.
Appealing to the Maidens, you rewrite fate. What was, is, and will be again.

You can attack up to MA rating (the normal attack is included in this total) for 3m each attack.

Conclusion Pursuing Approach

10m, 1wp, 1lhl. Simple (Speed 7). Combo-Basic. Obvious. One scene.
And thus, thy will be done.

Gain 1 wp when you harm an opponent. Triple opponent's wound penalty when defending against you or attacking you. If using prayer sutra, weapon is indestructible and your opponent loses 1 wp whenever your MA attack gets past his defenses. If opponent is out of WP, steal 10 motes instead. If opponent have less than 10 motes, your entire damage dice pool are successes.


  • Secrets could double Join Battle successes.
  • Flight could also be a Join Battle dice adder.
  • Blade is tricky, especially since Excellencies exist now. I think it should turn into a flat cost for a flat bonus, possibly a success bonus instead of a dice bonus. Such as MA/2 successes, round down.
  • I've never agreed that Joy shouldn't allow perfect defenses. After all, EGT works with ISC, even now in 2e where it can eliminate damage. However, I used a wording in Winged Serpent which might suit your tastes, since I specifically referenced the DV and perfect defenses circumvent that. My preferred method would simply to be cap the Essence gain of Joy, probably at MA in motes.

Just some thoughts. - IanPrice

The STC version of VBoS actually seems alright, with the only exception being Blade overshadowing Infinite MA Mastery and MA Essence Flow. Just like it used to. I'd highly suggest getting access to a copy of the book and bringing BotBM down to a sensible level, perhaps using Ian's suggestion above. -- Somori

It's stupid to include two JB roll-enhancers in a style when everyone has Excellencies they can apply to JB. Stupid. I suggest instead that at least one of them eliminate the Speed-6 cap on 'first action'. Your reading of EGT is wrong, and I agree that JiAS shouldn't disallow perfects. This Charm justifies an overall lackluster style. - willows

Man, Essence Auspicious is so wrong. Eclipses with Essence Auspicious for the win. Oh, wait, that has nothing to do with the topic. No, go scroll up, before the comments section. That's where the actual stuff is. When you're done, scroll down back and tell me what you think. - TonyC

How about something like this:
  • Secrets of Future Strife: Add your MA in dice to all awareness rolls to detect surprise. You cannot be attacked from behind when Surrounded by 5 people. Rationale: I went with something different. As it is, it was massivly better than any other JB Adder, and didn't cost Essence or charm use.
  • Joy in Adversity: Seems ok, but at 2m/success though you need 2 successes to get back a 2E perfect though. I'd either disallow perfects or make it 1m/success(and allow perfects).
  • BotBM: Nice idea, although I would dial back the motes spent to MA x 2. As is, you get the same effect as the old verion(+10 Acc and +10 Def) with additional benefit. How about:
    • Same costs/limits as above but: Acc and Defence may be increased by up to MA, Rate may be increased by up to Ess and Damage may be increased by up to MA+ Ess.

I prefer to force a more "even" improvement, which fits better thematicly anyway.


  • Secrets. The 1e version was also way better than any other init adder. Sure it works only once, but so does the 2e version. Oh, wait, I had intended to specifically spell out that it works only for the first JB roll of the scene. I'll add it. Anyway, in keeping with the 1e version of the charm, I want Secrets to give you a significant advantage for that very first tick and then no more. The two alternatives you mentioned potentially lasts for a good portion of the scene (a dedicated ninja could force you to make many detect surprise checks and the GM can always summon more extras to keep your Exalt surrounded). I'm intrigued with the MA adding to Awareness check for just detecting surprise attacks though, as it fits. What do others think?
  • Joy in Adversity. I thought my version already disallow perfects since when you use a perfect dodge/parry, you don't get to apply DVs. As for the other option, tweaking the mote gain is one way of adjusting the power level of the charm. I like mine better as it makes relying on Excellencies more sustainable, but yours work too.
  • Blade. I intentionally made it so it's possible to get +10. Committing 20 motes to get there has its own cost. The charm and spell I referenced when coming up with this (Glorious Solar Saber and Wood Dragon's Claw) also does not try to even-out the improvements. (They're also more efficient, although both give you less maximum points).
The problem people seem to be having with STC's Blade is not the fact that you can commit 20 motes to get +10 MA attack & parry dice. The problem is that it obviates the need for Infinite MA mastery. With this one, you could get the equivalent to +10 MA attack & parry dice, but if you do that, you are not wielding the 12L/4 Grand Daiklave and if you are wielding the Grand Daiklave after all, you're spending 20m to get +10 accuracy or +5 Parry DV, which seems fair to me. I'm more worried with whether it's okay to let people reflexively reallocate the points. This is a fairly significant benefit. I'm also worried with how this charm interacts with a Lunar's natural weapons.
Thematically my idea is that the Sidereal knows exactly what he needs to get past his opponent's defenses and Mars gave him the very blade he needs. He doesn't need to carry around a Grand Daiklave. If he needs one, he's one. If he's facing a soak monster, he pumps his damage. If he's facing a DV monster, pump up accuracy and rate. If he's facing somebody that can deal lots of damage, pump up defense. Being able to reflexively reallocate the points is for when you're facing multiple opponents. It's also so that if he happens to be using a form weapon and it gets disarmed/destroyed, he's not completely boned.

- TonyC

Okay, I'm toying with the idea of enforcing that Damage must be the highest improved rating, since the theme is after all a blade. Is this necessary? Thoughts? - TonyC

I just bought the STC, and my opinion has shifted. I don't think what's in there needs changing at all. The function of Blade of the Battle Maiden does indeed overlap with the Solar Infinite Mastery charm. However, I had an epiphany, and realized that this simply makes the style less overly attractive to Solars. Flight of Mercury reduces the speed of Martial Arts attacks by one for an action per mote, up to MA actions before reactivating it. Secrets doubles the JB pool. Joy already contains the "when negated by DV" wording, thus disallowing perfects, and is in fact the 5m, reflexive, one scene charm we know. So, other than Blade, Flight, and Secrets, you haven't changed anything... and I wouldn't even change those myself. Powerful? Yes. Overly? No. Sidereal Essence pools won't stand 20 committed motes (on top of artifact weapons) too easily. Solars would rather pay 1wp for Infinite Mastery than 2wp for Blade, even if it does let them parry lethal and ranged unarmed with no stunt. Now, as far as house-rules changes go, what is shown up above is not something I'd complain about playing with, except inasmuch as I don't like to fix what isn't broken. - IanPrice

Um, I think you have it backwards. It makes Infinite Martial Arts Mastery less attractive to Solars, because this Charm is accessible 2 Essence dots sooner than a full-commit Infinite MA. That's what I would call "bad game design." Martial Arts Charms are really, really not supposed to make Solar Charms obsolete. - Hapushet
Agreed. BotBM is by far the better option. - willows
1 dot of Essence earlier. Infinite Mastery may not gain full function at first, but it is an Essence 3 charm, and not useless even at that level. Essence dots are not speedbumps. They are their own reward. I'll have more Essence to commit at Essence 4 than Essence 2, and will no longer care about the difference. I'll also probably have a Combo with an Excellency I like in it by Essence 4, because to do otherwise would be poor character design. Possibly a death sentence in heavy combat. Yes, Blade would not need the Combo. But say I want to Clinch; BotBM doesn't do that. What if another MA charm I combo in cares about my static MA rating? Blade also fails me there, where an Excellency would not. Blade also fails to add to rolls for any action besides an attack or parry, whether they be created by charm or stunt. BotBM cuts corners to let Sidereals pretend they can compete with Solars. That's half the picture.
The other half: if I do it the Infinite Mastery way, I don't have to worry about some Sidereal indoctrination messing with my character concept. Poor game design? Hardly. You can't learn VBoS as a Solar without a teacher. Who's that include? Sidereals. Any GM who wants to limit this charm has so many easy ways out laid at his feet that I can't take arguements to the contrary seriously. There's no reason to let just any PC know a Sidereal, let alone one who is willing to teach the sacred style sutra handed down from the maidens. The most likely ones to teach it are the Cult of the Illuminated (who are more likely to teach an animal style), and they restrict you with Indoctrination so you give up character control in exchange for it. In actual play, it's hardly that easy to justify Solars with VBoS. Thus, it seems far more attractive for me to learn Infinite Mastery, for which I need no teacher. - IanPrice
Ian, Clinch is an attack using Dex/Str + MA. Thus BotBM enhances it. If an MA charm cares about your MA rating (which btw is a Trait, not a Static Value), MA Excellency + Infinite MA Mastery is not going to help any. The number of MA charms that can use an MA roll that is somehow not an attack or parry is limited. In the Ex2 corebook, neither the Snake nor the Solar Hero styles have any.
VBoS is a Celestial MA. Sure it was designed by the Maiden of Endings herself, but it's a Celestial MA. A Celestial Exalt does not need a tutor to learn it. Make up some background about one of your previous incarnation having learned the style, and you are perfectly justified using that background to learn the style. Alternatively, battle a few VBoS martial artists and reverse-engineer the principles behind it. - TonyC
And let's not forget that Infinite (Ability) Mastery is a Simple, non-Combable action, while the STC version of BotBM is non-Comboable and Reflexive, a benefit that might justify the extra Willpower cost by itself. - Hapushet, whose players have several times had cause to regret I(A)M's slowness in activation

Three further comments.

  • First, yes, you do need a teacher, otherwise you have to invent the charm all over again. Perfectly within any ST's right to say, "you're not the Maiden of Endings, nor do you have her charm-designing facilities, or (yet) the centuries of practice at the Essence flows of a Martial Art..." etc. Besides the wimpy 4x training time without a tutor, charms are invented from scratch with no teaching. So, no Solars inventing charms designed originally for Sidereals that Solars just happen to be able to learn. Ask any player who complains, "exactly how is it your character will be seeking to design a sutra for emulating and implementing the strands of Fate leading to death in a martial art?" If you get a reply that makes you think it's cool enough to warrant a charm you would otherwise feel is broken, tada, there's your answer. If not... there's your answer!
  • Second, I just had a thought: if I am unarmed, isn't that bonus to Accuracy and Defense exactly the same thing I would have gotten before? Well, not at first, admittedly, since it waits until Essence improves instead of Dex. However, this is also more dangerous. +10 Accuracy is not the same as +10 dice bonus from charms. Wouldn't this lead to something even more broken where BotBM could stack with Excellencies? The flexibility to improve your damage also makes this potentially much more dangerous even if it does not stack. +10 to hit and +10 to damage at the right time eliminates the need for any bonus to defense.
  • On the third and final point, I note that from my experience with Second Edition, mobility is more powerful than the Speed of an action. Move works on every tick reflexively, once per tick. Moving faster than your opponent, maintaining the ability to stick and move (or better yet, poke from range), you can maintain a deadly advantage regardless of Speed. Your version of Flight of Mercury creates an advantage which, considering this, I find to be more potent than reducing the speed of MA attacks. With a reflexive Dash, hopping dodges even become easy to follow.

I mislike the mindset which leads to changing the rules drastically because of minor perceived imbalances. So it's 10 dice without a Combo slightly earlier... woohoo. The Earth Immaculate NPC grinds your face with a Tetsubo anyway. 'Cause you tried to headbutt and he used Weapon Breaking Defense, and he's an NPC, with whatever relative power level the ST deems appropriate to the story needs. - IanPrice, doggedly saying... not much, and too much. (PS, TonyC, despite all my ramblings, you can still test out your versions of these charms in the TrialByFire. That's what it's for, after all.)

I dunno. VBos is fairly well known. (Alchemicals can learn it!). I wouldn't make finding a teacher all that difficult. Why have Univerals MA if they arn't universal? Thematicly, it kinda makes sense for the Immaculate Paths, although I imagine even these were common in First Age. (I can't immagine the Sidereals invent 5 Celestial MA's in complete secrecy. They probably just used Evading the Truth. "Oh, these MA's are just so the DB's can rebel against their just rulers and throw the world into a dark age." "Man, you Sidereals are so funny, that's why we keep you around!")
Personally, I can't see any way keep BotBM similar to what it did before and NOT have it conflict with IAM though. I kinda see this version, but I dunno. (Making unarmed combat more viable is good, It isn't that all effective with weapons though. This is kinda what GSS should have been though.)
Additionally, I don't think "I'm afraid of nebulous story-things that might happen in the game, based on no guidelines or expectations that come from outside of my own play" is an especially good balancing feature for Charms expected to be used in a larger context. If we're to be discussing the mechanical properties of Charms, let's talk about those, and leave your baseless speculations about "Sidereal indoctrination" and such hogwash in the sty where they belong. - willows
Okay, let's just discuss the mechanical effects, because the backstory really is nebulous. What a GM might consider a minor detail color might be a hardcore principle for another. So let's just discuss both BotBM and FoM mechanical effects. For BotBM, please scroll up. FlowLikeBits already pointed it out and I explained my reasoning there. We can discuss fine tuning up there. For Flight of Mercury, what I did is basically add 6 to your Move. This is slightly better than Lightning Speed (add athletics to move rate, can be further improved with athletic excellencies) or any other equivalent movement doubler, but this does not affect jumps (so far the quickest way to move), but it's also more expensive (5m instead of Lightning Speed's 3m). If you disagree, let's discuss. - TonyC

Hi there! I think there is a rule confusion that I might be wrong about that changes the comparison between MA Excellencies, Mastery and Essence Flow with BotBM. Since BotBM gives a flat bonus for the scene, flurries and PDVs are affected as such. However, as I understand Infinite Mastery anyway, is that the Solar can buy free dice to attack or DV rolls to a limited number of Dex+MA per tick. That is, in a flurry, the Solar must divide her dice to her actions. So, each attack cannot benefit from the dice adder maximally. However, in the case om BotBM, all dice are added before the multiple attacts penalties are applied, which is significantly better.

Infinite Melee Mastery Invisible Sword Princess has Essence 4, a melee dice pool of 13 (including specialty), a DV of 7 and uses Infinite Melee Mastery. She flurries three attacks. That's 10, 9 and 8 dice respectively. Her PDV is at 4 (7-3). She can now buy 10 dice in total to aid her attacks or her poor DV. This ability costs 20 motes and 1 WP.

Blade of the Battle Maiden Sad Ivory is using the BotBM. She has base dice pool of 13 and a DV of 7. The charm ups her stats to 23 and 12 DV respectively. Her flurry is at 20, 19, 18 with a PDV of 9 (12-3). This costs 20 motes and 2 WP.

On average, Sad Ivory wins. -Clebo

  • Er, I think you're confused. Infinite <whatever> Mastery reduces cost of excellencies, and excellency adds are capped by base pool. Thus even after splitting you may add 10 dice from first excellency. End pools from both methods are identical. ~Capric
    • Ehum, Capric, as I stated in beginning I am confused. If you are correct, then I am utterly baffled by the total number of words needed to say "persistent dice adder or persistent success adder" in the description of Infinite Mastery. -Clebo
      • Infinite <whatever> Mastery is neither a persistent dice adder nor a success adder. It only affects the cost of its respective Excellencies, which you may then invoke as normal (ie, on a per-roll basis); of course, if you have reduced their cost down to zero then it becomes the functional equivalent of a dice/successes adder with one difference: it requires charm action to recieve benefit. Of course, you also have the option of recieving either extra dice and/or extra successes, or even a reroll if you want. This is getting offtopic, so if you'd like to discuss more leave note on my userpage or something. ~Capric

A note; one of VBOS Form's two abilities is much less powerful than it used to be, because of Essence ping; I would suggest reducing cost to 5m and giving it Speed 4 instead of 6 to compensate. - FrivYeti

Good point, but Power Combat already depowered the Form charm and they didn't change anything back then. For the moment I'm changing the mote cost of my version to 5m. - TonyC