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Protection: The White Aegis of the Guardian

A Sidereal Martial Art by DeadManSeven.


This was based off me wondering what a more defensive high-Essence style would look like. No prizes for guessing the origins of the sutra. :)


The Charms in the White Aegis of the Guardian Style do not treat any weapons as unarmed attacks. All the Charms are incompatible with armour, but can be used with a shield.


    Barrier                    Purity
    of  the                    of the
     Guard                    Defender
          \                  /
           Balance       Blessings
           of  the        of the
            Just        Divinities
                \      /
                 in the
               /        \`
         Shield          Succor
        for  the         of the
       Shieldless      Sisterhood
                 \    /
               White Aegis    [one complete]
                 of  the ---- [Martial Arts]
              Guardian Form   [   style    ]
             /      |      \`
Receiving the       |       Shifting  the
  Celestial    Invoking the    Hostile
    Favour     Protector's      Strike
          \___     Rage     ___/
              \     |      /
               Lending  the
               Becoming the

(For a non-ASCII Charm tree, click here.)

The Student's Sutra of Protection: Once, there was a Maiden...

Barrier of the Guard

Cost: 6 motes
Duration: Instant
Type: Supplemental
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 4
Prerequisites: None
besieged on all sides

A guardian is able to separate her allies and her enemies, acting like a wall between them. Channelling essence into her blows, the martial artist drives back those who would harm her and her allies. Her fists glow with a white aura as she makes her strike, which may be against an opponent, hitting the ground, or even a blow that connects with nothing but air. A white pulse emits from the point where her fist ends the strike, driving back all enemies to a distance of [Essence*3] yards. All those struck by the Barrier of the Guard, even if they are driven back only a foot, receive damage from the attack as if the character had hit them with a regular martial arts attack, with the exception that the damage is always bashing. However, if she is capable of inflicting lethal or aggravated damage with her bare hands, use those soak values against the raw damage of the attack.

Balance of the Just
Cost: 8 motes
Duration: One Turn
Type: Reflexive
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 4
Prerequisites: Barrier of the Guard
by imbalance from the greedy

A guardian protects her allies with retribution. Any blow that strikes one of her wards also falls upon the attacker. The martial artist makes a swift sigil with her hands, marking her and her allies as deadly to attack. For the turn, any damage inflicted upon one of her allies, within [Essence*10] yards of the character, is also inflicted upon the attacker that caused the wound. This damage bypasses soak and defences, and is applied at the end of the turn.

Purity of the Defender
Cost: 8 motes
Duration: Five Turns
Type: Simple
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 4
Prerequisites: None
and evil from the wicked.

A guardian's nobility and sacrifice is enough to drive back those who would not have the same courage in her place. The inner light of the character's purity shines forth, blinding all those who are unable to match her virtue. Any enemy she faces is unable to oppose her, unless one of their Virtues is greater than 3. Those with Virtues rated at 4 and 5 must succeed on a roll of their highest Virtue (difficulty 2) at the beginning of each turn this Charm is active to be able to attack her, although they may still attempt to hinder her through non-violent means (inflicting no damage), regardless of success or failure on the roll.

The martial artist can also sense those who are lacking in inner strength. She will notice, without the need for a roll, anyone with a Virtue lower than 2 (permanently, or lowered temporarily through the use of Charms). Against such individuals, the character doubles her raw damage.

The character must have at least one Virtue rated 4 or higher herself to be able to use this Charm, though she can still learn it and advance through the style with lower Virtues.

Blessings of the Divinities
Cost: 15 motes
Duration: One Scene
Type: Simple
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 4
Prerequisites: Purity of the Defender
She uttered a prayer

A guardian receives knowledge from those who protect her, so she may better aid others. This Charm is actually several separate Charms, taught personally by either one of the five Maidens, Luna, or the Unconquered Sun. Regardless of the teacher, all variants of this Charm allow the user greater ability in protecting others. Typically, Sidereals learn the Charm taught by their patron Maiden first, and later learn others after they have achieved mastery of the style. It is very rare for a practitioner to have learned all seven variations of Blessings of the Divinity, chiefly because the Unconquered Sun rarely answers petitions to teach the Charm to Sidereal students after the Ursurpation.

  • Blessing of the Maiden of Journeys: Mercury grants the ability to swiftly rush to another's aid. The character triples her maximum movement distance for the turn, and is able to travel that distance and still take an action.
  • Blessing of the Maiden of Serenity: Venus guides characters who learn this Charm to move with grace and precision, subtly bringing the gaze of enemies towards them. Enemies must succeed in a Wits + Awareness roll (difficulty of the character's Essence) in order to act for the scene. They may continue to make the roll at the beginning of each turn until they succeed. While this Charm is active, even those who have been able to break away from the fascinating movements of the martial artist are at -2 dice to defend themselves.
  • Blessing of the Maiden of Battles: Mars lends her skill on the battlefield. The character may reflexively make a martial arts attack each turn, regardless of what she does with her action. She also doubles her base damage.
  • Blessing of the Maiden of Secrets: Jupiter gifts those who learn this Charm with foresight and glimpses into the future. The character always acts first each turn, unless a Charm like Thunderclap Rush Attack or Secrets of Future Strife is activated (in which case, initiative between the characters using initiative-winning Charms is resolved normally). She also suffers no penalties for holding any of her actions.
  • Blessing of the Maiden of Endings: Saturn gives the ability to end the lives of her enemies. The character can spend ten motes (which does not count towards Charm use for the turn) to make an unarmed attack deal aggravated damage. This cost is compatible with sutra cost reductions.
  • Blessing of Luna: Luna helps any who learn this Charm to survive. While it is active, the Character gains [Essence] -1 health levels, and heals a level of bashing damage at the beginning of each turn. When this Charm ends, any damage to the extra health levels disappears.
  • Blessing of the Unconquered Sun: The Unconquered Sun teaches the character to fight as he does. While this Charm is active, she has access to two independent actions each turn.

Beacon in the Darkness
Cost: 12 motes
Duration: Five Turns
Type: Reflexive
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 4
Prerequisites: Balance of the Just, Blessings of the Divinities
to battle the darkness,

A guardian is a shining light to others, guiding the way for her allies, and burning the bodies of her enemies. The character's anima flares in a corona of blinding white light. Any enemies within [Essence*10] yards of the martial artist are treated as attacking blind (-2 successes on attack rolls). Also, while anyone hostile towards the character or her allies stands within the field of light, they receive [Essence*2] bashing damage at the beginning of each turn. This damage can only be soaked by natural soak, but can be reduced down to 0 through soak. Using this Charm makes the character's location very visible, and the light may be seen from miles away with the naked eye.

Shield for the Shieldless
Cost: 10 motes, 1 lethal health level
Duration: Instant
Type: Reflexive
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 4
Prerequisites: Beacon in the Darkness
to protect the weak,

A guardian sacrifices herself to protect others. When the Character uses this Charm, a small wound appears on her body, healing quickly but leaving a scar. The scar will always be in the shape of a character from an ancient arcane tongue; if the martial artist uses this charm often enough, it will leave a litany telling of her sacrifices upon her body. She chooses a target to protect from harm (this target cannot be herself); the colour of her anima banner flashes briefly around her ward as the attack is diverted.

Using this Charm allows the character to bestow a perfect defence on one of her allies. This perfect defence may be in the form of either a block, a dodge, or a soak. This Charm is an exception to the 'one application per instant' rule, and can be used multiple times against the same attack, provided it is both, for example, unblockable and undodgeable.

Succor of the Sisterhood
Cost: 12 motes, 1 aggravated health level
Duration: One Scene
Type: Simple
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 5
Prerequisites: Beacon in the Darkness
to aid her sisters,

A guardian gives what she can to aid others. When this Charm is activated, the character chooses a target. For the rest of the scene, the character can then transfer as many motes of essence, points of Willpower, or health levels as she is willing to give. Her essence pools and Willpower rating are considered lower, and are not treated as if the character had spent motes or points of temporary Willpower. The character must share her health levels in order, beginning with the first undamaged health level. For example, if a character with the regular seven health levels had two levels of lethal damage when activating Succor of the Sisterhood, she could lend one health level (-1) or four health levels (-1, -2, -2, -4), but not just her -4 health level.

At the end of the scene (or when the Charm is ended), any unspent points of essence and Willpower return to the character, along with essence and Willpower regained from stunts, Charms, or other effects from the target. Health levels return with any damage they may have incurred, and should be reorganised into the correct order if the character is damaged while lending health levels.

(Example: Silent Bells Wisdom, a Chosen of Secrets, is fighting alongside her protégé Seven Thunder Kid, a Dawn Caste, against a powerful fae lord. At the beginning of the scene, Silent Bells Wisdom activates Succor of the Sisterhood, and gives Seven Thunder Kid 5 motes and 1 point of Willpower to activate Flow Like Blood. However, one of the fae lord's attacks breaks through Seven Thunder Kid's defences. Silent Bells Wisdom quickly replaces his -0 and -1 health levels with her own, absorbing the damage from the fae's sword. The fight progresses, with Seven Thunder Kid ending the battle with an impressive 3-dice stunt after Silent Bells Wisdom takes two levels of aggravated damage. Seven Bells Wisdom receives a point of Willpower back from Seven Thunder Kid's stunt as she ends Succor of the Sisterhood, and must move the aggravated levels of damage up to the health levels she lent out, and move the lethal ones down.)

White Aegis of the Guardian Form
Cost: 15 motes
Duration: One Scene
Type: Simple
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 5
Prerequisites: One complete martial art (all Charms), Shield for the Shieldless, Succor of the Sisterhood
and to always watch over them.

A guardian watches over all of her children, and can find them at any moment. A faint shimmering silver outline appears around martial artist, in the form of a suit of armour. To those who can sense the patterns of Essence in Creation, the character appears as a holy knight, clad in a suit of armour and holding a shield. The appearance of this phantom armour is different for each practitioner of the White Aegis of the Guardian style, and reflects the personality of the martial artist in the markings on the armour and the crest on the shield.

While this Charm is active, the character is aware of everything within [Essence*10] yards of her, and is unable to be surprised. She can also read the current amounts of essence, Willpower, and health any of her allies have. However, a guardian must not only observe, but also intervene. She is able to reflexively make any combat roll for an ally, provided her dice pool is higher. This roll cannot be augmented by Charms, hearthstones, or any other magical effects, but does include the benefits of being Exalted, such as adding Essence to dodge pools, and not suffering unskilled penalties. Finally, all of her allies within [Essence*10] yards are able to make a reflexive counter-attack against any attack (not including counter-attacks), using the character's Dexterity + Martial Arts as a dice pool, and her highest Virtue as base damage.

This is a Martial Arts Form Charm. Only one Form Charm may be active at any time.

Receiving the Celestial Favour
Cost: 12 motes, 1 Willpower
Duration: One Scene
Type: Reflexive
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 5
Prerequisites: White Aegis of the Guardian Form
The Elder Sutra of Protection: Something heard her prayer

A guardian teaches her wards to defend themselves. She grants them the blessings given to her by her celestial patrons so they may better protect themselves. This Charm functions similarly to Blessing of the Divinities. When a character leans this Charm, she learns the version related to the first Blessing she was taught without the need to be directly taught by a Maiden (or Luna, or the Unconquered Sun). She must later petition the various Incarnae when she wishes to be taught another version of this Charm.

When activating this Charm, the character selects a target to benefit from the Favour (the target cannot be herself). Anyone under the effects of a Celestial Favour, even the lowliest of mortals, will appear as a magical being to those who can detect the flows of essence, and his skin is tinted with the colour of the character's anima banner until the Charm is revoked. The variants of this Charm are as follows:

  • Receiving the Favour of Journeys: Mercury spirits away those she protects. While this Charm is active, the target may move up to the entire length of the distance he is able to travel in a turn in response to any attack.
  • Receiving the Favour of Serenity: Venus helps those she protects avoid trouble. While this Charm is active, the target may reflexively dodge any attack, even those he is unaware of, with his full dice pool.
  • Receiving the Favour of Battles: Mars protects through the swiftness of her blade. While this Charm is active, the target may parry attacks he is aware of using his full dice pool, while unarmed or using a weapon. If he is unarmed, he may parry lethal damage. He may also substitute the character's Martial Arts rating for his own rating in any combat ability (Archery, Brawl, Martial Arts, Melee, or Thrown).
  • Receiving the Favour of Secrets: Jupiter hides those under her protection in plain sight. While this Charm is active, the target becomes almost impossible to perceive. He adds the character's Essence in automatic successes to any Stealth rolls, and subtracts the character's [Essence/2] (rounded up) from any rolls to hit him, should he be discovered.
  • Receiving the Favour of Endings: Saturn aids the protection of others by allowing them to sense weaknesses and hasten the end of their enemies. While this Charm is active, the target receives his Awareness in automatic successes to hit, and adds +2 to his damage.
  • Receiving the Favour of Luna: Luna protects by granting the strength to withstand anything. While this Charm is active, the target adds his [Essence*3] to his bashing soak, [Essence*2] to lethal soak, and [Essence] to aggravated soak. All soak added is counted as natural soak, and has a hardness equal to half the amount granted (rounded down).
  • Receiving the Favour of the Unconquered Sun: The Unconquered Sun's protection is identical to the Blessing of the Unconquered Sun. Those who would ask him protection must decide for themselves how they will use it.

Invoking the Protector's Rage
Cost: 10 motes, 1 Willpower
Duration: One Scene
Type: Reflexive
Minimum Martial Arts: 6
Minimum Essence: 5
Prerequisites: White Aegis of the Guardian Form
and filled the Maiden with righteous anger

A guardian burns with rage when her charges are threatened. She notices every drop of blood spilled, and vows to pay it back. For the duration of this Charm, each time an ally takes damage within [Essence*10] yard of the character, she adds one to the base damage of her blows. This increase remains until the Charm ends, regardless of damage being healed. The damage must actually come from combat, and cannot be from health levels needed to activate Charms or spells. The character can only add up to her Martial Arts rating each turn to her base damage, and can only add [Martial Arts*Essence] in total.

Shifting the Hostile Strike
Cost: 15 motes, 1 Willpower
Duration: Instant
Type: Reflexive
Minimum Martial Arts: 5
Minimum Essence: 5
Prerequisites: White Aegis of the Guardian Form
towards those seeking to harm her sisters;

A guardian is more than a shield that blocks the strike; she is also the sword that reverses it. While she is able to promote unity among her allies through this style, this Charm lets her sow discord among her enemies, by taking strikes aimed at her allies, and turning them to hit her enemies. She chooses an attack made against an ally within [Essence*10] yards before damage is rolled, and rolls her Essence in an opposed roll against the target's Wits. If she wins, she is able to redirect the attack against any enemy within the attacker's range, without the attacker being aware of what will happen until it's too late. If the roll ties, the attacker is aware of what occurred, and can choose to either abort the attack (still paying any costs), or let it continue against the enemy of the character's choosing. If she fails, the attacker does not need to pay for the attack if they abort, but still have used their action for the turn, and can only act again with reflexive Charms, extra action effects, held actions, and the like.

Lending the Soul's Strength
Cost: 20 motes, 2 Willpower
Duration: One Scene
Type: Simple
Minimum Martial Arts: 6
Minimum Essence: 6
Prerequisites: Receiving the Celestial Favour, Invoking the Protector's Rage, Shifting the Hostile Strike
she shouted her name to her allies

A guardian gives all the protection she has to her allies. No longer is her knowledge of protection limited to herself; she can share these skills among her allies. When this Charm has been activated, any effects that aid the character also aid any of her allies within [Essence*10] yards. The Charms shared must be Martial Arts Charms, and must have a duration longer than Instant. Dice pools use the target's ratings, but do not suffer unskilled penalties if they have no rating in the relevant ability (ie. no dots in either Dodge or Performance while Defence of Shining Joy is being shared). The exception to this is Charms that involve Essence, either for a roll or a base value. In this case, the target only uses their Essence if it is higher than the character's. Costs for activating Charms are paid only by the character, but costs for activating parts of ongoing effects (such as being able to spend motes to strike immaterial spirits while using Hungry Ghost Form, or making unarmed attacks deal aggravated damage with Blessing of the Maiden of Endings) can be paid either by the character or by her allies, providing they have an Essence pool.

Becoming the Vengeful Destroyer
Cost: 15 motes, 1 Willpower
Duration: Instant
Type: Supplemental
Minimum Martial Arts: 6
Minimum Essence: 7
Prerequisites: Lending the Soul's Strength
and lay vengeance upon her enemies.

A guardian destroys that which threatens what she protects. The ultimate technique in the White Aegis of the Guardian Style protects through force, obliterating foes before they are able to cause harm. The martial artist's anima collects around her fists as she prepares to deal the killing blow. She adds [Essence] dice to her pool when she rolls her attack, which is unblockable and bypasses armour, and adds twice her highest Virtue to her base damage. She is also able to change what type of damage she deals, before soak is applied: one level of aggravated damage is worth two levels of lethal damage, and one level of lethal is worth two bashing. Damage can be converted up or down, and does not need to all be converted into one damage type. If a character chooses to attack with two or even three different types of damage by splitting up her raw damage, apply the appropriate soak as if the damage were part of separate attacks, and resolve rolling the damage after soak separately. Any damage converted, either up or down, has a minimum damage of [Essence/2] (rounded down).

(Example: Silent Bells Wisdom faces down an elder Lunar, who has just revealed he has access to a custom Charm that perferctly soaks aggravated damage. Silent Bells Wisdom has previously activated the Blessing of the Maiden of Saturn, and not wanting it to go to waste and thinking she can using a surprise tactic, strikes with Becoming the Vengeful Destroyer, and gets a massive 18A raw damage. She then converts it all to 36L, because aggravated damage has become useless. She then takes half that raw damage, and changes it to bashing, for 36B/18L raw damage. The Lunar has a soak of 26B/20L, bringing Silent Bells Wisdom's rolled damage to 10B and 3L (because of reduced minimum damage). She rolls and gains 5 successes for her bashing damage, and 2 successes for her lethal, dealing seven levels of damage, and catching the Lunar quite by surprise.)

After the blow has landed, essence springs forth from the martial artist's fists and radiates outwards, catching any enemies in the shockwave. It travels outwards up to a number of yards equal to the raw converted bashing damage of the attack, inflicting the same bashing damage on any enemies. This can also be converted, but only up to lethal damage. It also loses one level of bashing damage for each yard further it gets from the origin of the strike. The minimum damage of the shockwave is only 1, but it ignores armour, and is undodgeable. The shockwave occurs regardless of the character succeeding in her attack, in the same manner as Barrier of the Guard. The target of the original blow is not affected by the shockwave.

(Example: The Lunar's horde of beastmen watch in a rough circle at a distance of 20 yards from the two combatants. After Silent Bells Widsom's strike hits, anything within a yard of where the blow landed would be hit with 72B damage (18A converted to bashing). Silent Bells Wisdom converts this to lethal damage, making it 36L at the point of origin. However, it has to travel 20 yards, meaning it loses 20B, or 10L, by the time it hits the beastmen for 26L damage.)


I've gotta say, while the 'feel' is good, I'm a little worried (ok, a lot worried) that some of the Essence 4 charms are overpowered. More particularly, the ones that scare me the most are the "All damage done to allies is added to my damage" one, which doesn't specify how many allies it counts - for example, what if I'm the leader of an army? In the first round of combat, I could easily have a +100 to my damage. Not good for a charm that's supposed to, you know, not kill Autocthon in one hit. Another that scares me is the charm(s) that are taught by the Celestial Gods - For 15 motes (no Willpower in a scene-long this powerful?) you can get things like movement+attack (fine, simple, and I like it), or doubled actions (pretty cool, and tolerable at the Essence level it's at and high mote cost) but more frighteningly, one that doubles your base damage, and another that causes your base to be Aggravated. That's a lot of oomph. Mind, things like Essence-Fang Strike (I think that's what it's called) are the pinnacle of the Solar tree, and take WP, and only last for one strike, while this is a scene-long booster.

Similarly the one that lets you donate things to your allies is cool in flavor, but scary in practice. At the beginning of the round, the Siddie 'donates' a whole heck of a lot to an ally - like his entire pool, and most of his HL. The ally, empowered, launches the "All-Encompassing Uber Combo", fully charged. At the end of the round, the total usage of motes/WP/HL in the group is only 12m+1HL, even if the Uber Combo consumed over 60m+5WP+2HL.

What about the charm that lets you automatically win initiative for a scene? Even against a Moonsilver Alchemical with a base initiative of 32? What about one with a bonus of 40? Where does it stop? Or the nice and happy "Perfect Defense"?! In theory, only Solars have access to perfects - things like Impeding the Flow aren't truly perfect, and even if they do exist, are quite rare. Putting perfect defenses in a Celestial Martial Art is giving those same perfects (in theory) to Lunars, Alchemicals, and Sidereals. Sure, it doesn't apply to you, only your ally - but having advertised that you have this charm, allies are easy to come by. And if you're smart, you'll teach this to your ally as well, allowing cross-defending quite easily. And it isn't even a single type of defense (parry/dodge/soak) it's all three?

Or the one that lets you auto-return damage as unsoakable unblockable? Suppose you're in a fight - your friend uses the perfect soak charm (above) on you, and you stand there, taking a walloping huge amount of damage, but soaking it all. Then automatically returning it, unstoppably, to your opponent.

So yeah. While the flavors are awesome, and many of the ideas quite cool, I'm a little hesistant to call some of the charms 'reasonable' just yet. If the Essence requirements were raised by one, I'd have a /lot/ less ground to stand on, as Essence 5/6 charms that do some of these things sound plausible, but 4/5 is well within the reach of a lot of players, and quite high-powered compared to what I'm used to thinking.

Feel free to disagree, as I'm new to the Wiki... by GregLink

How did I miss this giant essay? I thought for sure nobody had read this. Anyway...
It's a Sidereal style, so that's a lot of power to throw around. Compared to the jaw-dropping things you can do with the canon Sidereal styles (PAoC, for example, gives you access to some really scary things early on in the tree - Games of Divinity Form, Manse and Demesne Form, and it's not too much of a stretch to get Four Magical Materials Form, either), I figured this was about equivalent. Sure, the first instinct is to say, 'Wow, shit, that is way broken,' but it's not that bad when you keep in mind the kind of attacks that come out at high Essence levels. 'If I touch you, roll save vs. death.' 'I lay waste to a strip of land ten miles in front of me with fifteen dice of Aggravated damage.' Sidereal kung-fu is scary. So something capable of defending it has to have equal amounts of scary.
With some of the specific issues you've brought up, there's still holes and ways around then. Succor of the Sisterhood isn't of Instant duration, so no combos for you that turn, and you can't use it if you've already used a Charm. Also, anything you lend doesn't belong to you until the turn is over, so you're in big trouble if you get struck with a Charm that involves your Willpower in some way - or worse, get hit when you've loaned out some health levels. Shield for the Shieldless doesn't defend against extra effects (knockback, stat loss, social Charms, having one's soul fall off, etc.), and using it too much will chew into a Sidereal's tiny health pool. Blessing of the Maiden of Jupiter's effects could easily be replicated by any other Celestial with a custom Charm (initiative-winning Charms like Thunderclap Rush Attack and the like require, what, Essence 2? So it's not unreasonable to think that a scene-long initiative-winner could appear at Essence 3 or 4... and probably wouldn't cost as much as 15 motes to power it, either). There's also the hole that, while this style is very good at defending other people, it's lousy at defending yourself. There is a lot of powerful Charms, yes - but, to me, a smart opponent who's come prepared will find ways through the gaps. And, really... if you're not prepared, and planning on going head-to-head with a Sidereal and his crack fighting unit, you're probably going to lose anyway.
However, I'm not in total disagreement. Blessing of the Maiden of Endings is pretty out there, and Invoking the Protector's Rage could probably stand to be bumped up to requiring Essence 6. But then I think of the madness that is Prismatic Arrangement of Creation, where you can be totally fascinating and almost impossible to attack, and get all these crazy boosts to your stats, and have a level 5 hearthstone stuck in your forehead... And that's supposed to be a low-end style for younger Sidereals.
Thankyou very much for your comments, because I do quite like having something to discuss. :) - DeadManSeven

By the way, all of the Celestials in print ('cept Lunars) have perfect defenses (...Alchemicals may not, I haven't read them thoroughly). Solars have Heavenly Guardian Defense, Abyssals have Incomparable Sentinel Stance (or whatever), and Sidereals have Serenity in Blood. So...throwing a perfect defense in a high-Essence Sidereal-level MA doesn't seem like that big a deal. - David.

Even Lunars have a sort-of perfect defence. Don't they have a perfect dodge/parry that needs to succeed on a (very easy) dice roll first to work? - DeadManSeven
Yes, they have Flowing Body Evasion. I left it out (and the Sidereals' Duck Fate) since it's, arguably, not "perfect", since it does require a roll. I consider those to be perfect defenses, of course. - David.

Pretty neat style. I do agee that some of the effects seem a bit much. I must say, this style was basicly designed for the Gold Fraction to teach Solars. I'm gonna try to articulate this more specifictly though

I'm going to lace my comments in with yours, 'cause... well, 'cause I'm lazy and I don't want to flick back and forth between my response and yours. I'll put them in itallics to make them stand out. - DM7
Good idea actually. I may actually do that next time I make a big list-o-comments type thingy. thanks -FLB
  • Balance of the Just: This seems a bit much. Heck, I'm not even sure if you can HGD it. With a Gem of Adamant Skin and Wood Dragon form, it's a potent offensvie technique also. What happens if two Stylist fight each other? The Pattern spiders crash? I'd make it one automatic level and call it a form of counterattack(and hence not applying to counterattacks). Yeah, it's turn lenght, but with Fully Independant Actions, you can use multiple charms in a turn.
If two people used this Charm on each other, they'd do damage normally, and then add the extra damage at the end of the turn. I could see it being defended against in some fashion, though, to lessen the effects. Maybe knock off a health level for each point of Essence the attacker has?
Alternatively, limit it to a single target (not including the MAist). - DM7
True, I'd assume the charm doesn't kick in during the endo-of-turn application. This is a toughy. How about it does a max number of levels equal to the MAists essence? (Although I suppose at the funny end, if you actually kill them, the charm dissipates before the end of turn) - FLB
  • Blessings of the Divinities: I do think scene length agg damage is a bit much for Ess 4. May say you can reflexivly supplement any attack by spending 10 motes to convert it to agg(not counting as charm use).
That's a workable fix (as I said before, that particular blessing probably is overpowered), but 10 motes is a lot. I'd want to drop that down to somewhere around the 3-5 range. Unless it applies for a sutra bonus, in which case, 10 motes is fine. - DM7
  • Shield for the Shieldless: What type of health level is it? Also, what does the last sentance mean? I'd also give it a willpower cost.
I'm sure there's a few attacks that are both unblockable and undodgeable (Thunder Wolf's Howl is the only one I can remember offhand); the clause at the end is to cover those. Health levels, if unspecified, are bashing (says the core), but this could probably stand to be lethal. - DM7
I would generally go with lethal. Bashing can usualy be regenerated pretty easily. Lethal is usually only easy for Lunars - FLB
  • Succor of the Sisterhood: Again, what type of HL? Note, two characthers with this charm and Charcoal March of Spiders form would be incredibly nasty. First, they lend each other everything, then get it all back at the end of the turn. Maybe make it a scene length "lend anything" charm.
This probably deserves to be an aggravated health level. Also possibly to be a Simple Charm instead of Reflexive. I don't know what exactly was going through my mind with that one.
Also, this Charm can end up with weird situations where you're perfectly healthy except for your -0 and -4 health levels. There should be something in there about suffering the highest wound penalty, regardless of how many health levels are actually missing. Slightly ungainly, but that's weird Sidereal Martial Arts being weird for you. - DM7
Well, it's more the "you get back what you lent, even if it was used" that's the problem. Making it a simple charm won't really help. It's still abusive with CMoSF, and pretty nasty otherwise. I'd make it scene lenght, but drop the "get back what you lent when it ends" effect. - FLB
Making this a scene-length thing solves a lot of the problems, and then isn't so abusive. Health levels come back damaged, but damage reorganises itself to run in the right order for healing. That's less complex. - DM7
  • White Aegis of the Guardian Form: Does the "make any roll" effect also have an Essence * 10 yards range? It also seems like it might have some nasty non-combat applications, like standing in the middle of a room of craftsman, who all suddenly have huge Dex+Craft die pools. IIRC you could also probably bribe gods by giving a large number of followers really good prayer rolls. Perhaps restrict it to martial abilties?
This is like the third time I've done this. Yes, it should only have combat applications. And it also extends out Ess*10 yards. - DM7
  • Receiving the Celestial Favour: Does Luna's favor depend upon the Martial Artists Essence or the targets?
Target's. It was originally the MAists, but... that's insane. I've been meaning to change that one, never got around to it. - DM7
  • Invoking the Protector's Rage: Seems a bit much. When leading an army one could easily end up with a base damage of several hundread. Perhaps each level inflicted adds to the characthers base damage once. You still might want to put a cap on it. Maybe a max bonus of 5*Essence. You also might as well make it an Essence 6 charm, as you need Ess 6 to get MA of 6
How about each time an ally is damaged within Ess*10 yards, base damage increases by one? - DM7
As long as it accumulates throughout the scene, you can still rack up insane base damages pretty easily. You could say that your bonus from this resets to zero after each blow. There are still some really weird sick applications like having a bunch of extra's knocked out and then attacking a city wall with 3000B. This is why I'd probably stick in a cap also. "If you strike them down, I will become more powerful than you can possible imagine!" - FLB
A cap of +MA to base damage per turn, with +Ess all up should be alright. I don't use Martial Arts ratings enough in MA Charm mechanics, anyway. - DM7
  • Lending the Soul's Strength: Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. The Gold should teach this to Solars. You'd be crazy not to. I'd at least say that Multiple Lendings of the same effect from different people do not stack. Picture a circle with this and BotBM...yowza. Maybe max number of effects equals Essence.


That should maybe be reined in with getting rid of the thing about sharing any scene-length Charm, and keep it just within the field of Martial Arts. Still powerful, but not 'Gold Factions pwnz everything now' powerful. Dice caps would still apply anyway, since a Charm has to specifically say that it allows Solars (and MA-using Sidereals) to add more dice and Attritube + Ability, Lunars to add more than Attribute, etc..
Even keeping it within the field of martial arts is pretty bad. Say one of you know PaoC form and another knows CMoSF...This gets bad quickly. Heck, you could spread the pain for BotBM around, and everyone could max their die pools without crippling their essence. I'm temped to say you can only lend one effect and each only recieve one lent effect.(I don't think you'd need to limit it to MA in this case.) Anyway, I wouldn't feel to bad about missing this, since a bloody Terrestial MA(Crimson Pentacle Blade) also lets you do it. - FLB
Five Directions Formation Thinger, if read with a certain interpretation, is broken like crazy. It's still pretty insane even without that reading that says it allows a Sidereal and his Immaculate hit-squad to belt everything in sight with Essence-Shattering Typhoon. I'd say that, if you wanted to use that Charm as a comparison to Lending the Soul's Strength, a Formation will end up looking about equal, because although all the members must always be there, the cost can be shared around. To really abuse the power to Lending the Soul's Strength, you have to commit a lot of essence to scene-long Charms (not always viable, especially for Sidereals, with their small essence pools and need to keep low profiles), and you usually need a lot of time to prepare (most scene-long Martial Arts Charms are Simple, and many of them are Form Charms). I don't really see this as totally unbalancing when limited to just MA Charms, when it commits a minimum of 10 motes, plus the cost of whatever else you want to commit on top of that. - DM7
Also, a couple of times you brought up nasty things that can be done with multiple Sidereals and other SMAs. A Sidereal with knowledge of multiple SMAs, who's bringing their friends who also have knowledge of SMAs, who have gotten together before-hand to figure out who's deadly fung-fu will synergise best together... there's a lot of power behind that. We haven't seen Charms from the other splats that can compete with Sidereal Martial Arts (well, there's the debateable inclusion of the Caste Book Charms), but logically they should be more effective, more direct, and a lot cheaper. A Sidereal can bring his fifteen-Charm Combo 'O Doom from several styles that took in the 1000xp range to learn, but they might not do him any good against the Zenith who talks him out of fighting, the Night he can't find, the Full Moon that just refuses to die, etc.. - DM7
I agree wit you about the power, although some of these charms tend to synergize in really evil ways. And multiple Sidereals with SMA isn't that odd, not's like they have much else to spend xp on at Essence 4+. I'm mostly going for obvious stuff here. Like if there are 5 of us who know this charm, we can each put up a scene length effect and we each get 5 effects! - FLB
True, but multiple Sidereals with SMA going up against a target should be a rarity in itself. If there's only 100 Sidereals ever, and some are ronin, and some are in training, and some are working for Deathlords, and some aren't old enough to learn Sidereal Martial Arts yet, and some have more important things in Heaven to be doing, I'd say the odds are of two or more Sidereals with multiple secret styles being together when some big shit hits the fan are actually pretty slim. Of course, the odds increase dramatically when those Sidereals are PCs, but Exalted by default assumes the PCs are going to be better than anything else in Creation anyway. :) If I had five Sidereal players that wanted to devote their XP to learning this style and being the Super-Sentai of Untouchable Bad-Assitude, I'd let 'em. - DM7