Cost: 1 health level Duration: Instant Type: Simple Minimum Endurance: 3 Minimum Essence: 1 Prerequisite Charms: Essence-Gathering Temper
Once the principles of gaining power from pain have been mastered, an Exalt can learn to gain power even faster through directly sacrificing his life force. The health level lost to this charm is Aggravated. When this charm is activated, the Solar regains his Essence in motes for each dot he has in Endurance.
Inner Strength Prana
Cost: 1 willpower, 1 virtue channel Duration: Instant Type: Simple Minimum Endurance: 4 Minimum Essence: 2 Prerequisite Charms: Body-Dissolving Sacrifice, Willpower-Enhancing Spirit
The true secret of a Solar's inner strength is that it is fundamentally limitless; this is why even the primordials' Great Curse adds to a Solar's reserves of willpower, at the same time as it goads him to reckless and foolish action. Upon activating Inner Strength Prana, an Exalt gains motes equal to Essence + Endurance + Willpower + the Virtue channeled.
Mystical Inner Balance
Cost: 3 motes Duration: Instant Type: Simple Minimum Endurance: 5 Minimum Essence: 3 Prerequisite Charms: Inner Strength Prana
Essence, Willpower, and the Virtues each represent different kinds of strength in spirit. Yet just as fire heats water, making steam, which can push the top off a cooking pot, the three can exchange among one another. This charm restores 1 willpower for each success on a roll of the character's permanent Essence. Instead of willpower, 2 successes may be used to restore a used Virtue channel.
Shining Inner Might Stance
Cost: 10 motes, 1 willpower Duration: Varies Type: Reflexive Minimum Endurance: 5 Minimum Essence: 4 Prerequisite Charms: Mystical Inner Balance, Tiger-Warrior's Endurance
A warrior of Zenith using this charm is truly fearsome, resisting injury even as it strengthens him. While this charm is in effect, the Solar soaks lethal damage with his bashing soak. Any time he is struck by an attack, he regains motes equal to the attacker's Essence. He also rolls that many dice when struck (attacker's Essence), and regains one temporary willpower per success and one virtue channel if there are any successes on the roll. Only 1 virtue channel may be restored per strike by this effect, and temporary willpower may not exceed permanent willpower due to this effect. Finally, this character suffers no wound penalties while this charm persists.
The motes used to power this charm are not considered to be committed, but one temporary willpower point must be spent each turn after the first to maintain this charm. The mystic power is allowed to flow back into the Solar's anima, but a portion of the Exalt's mind must continuously concentrate to keep the effect going, since it is that very will which is transmuted into Essence and yet more willpower through this charm.
You do realize that this would be the first commited willpower charm ever, right? Willpower is never commited in any other charms. - Scrollreader
- Hmm... didn't realize that. I mean, health levels have been commited before, why not willpower? - IanPrice
Because Willpower is a much, much tighter resource and having it be a commitable thing (some spells require it committed though, I think) is just opening a can of worms that really doesn't need openning. To get the same effect, require a roll to keep the Charm active or a continual mote upkeep. - Telgar
- So... okay. Ignoring the "just don't go there" feeling of your reply (I honestly don't much care if it's been done before or not; I think it's a nifty mechanic, providing exactly the kind of limit I want), I'm also hearing a comment that willpower is such a scant resource that committing it is a big deal. What I'd really like to know is, do you think that the charm is worth it? 1/5 to 1/10 of your pool being tied up. For an Essence 4 solar, that's about the same as if the 10 motes were committed, really, since your total mote pool will be around 70. Sure, it gets comparatively more expensive as you go on, but the benefits continue to increase.
- Maybe I should let people regain multiple willpower/virtue channels through multiple successes on the Essence roll? - IanPrice
- Not to be an ass. But a sonnet ceases to be a sonnet if you ignore the construction. It's not that there are no WP commited charms because the developers thought it was too priceless. It's that WP simply cannot be commited. At least, not temporary willpower. Willpower is a moment of focus and concentration. It's not something like essence that you can send humming through the aether. It's like writing a charm that can counter a counterattack. While certainly possible to write, and possibly not game breaking, if written well, it's something that mucks in a big way with what the game is, and how it's put together. Do you really think /this/ effect, and not something like, say PoCB is worth such a breach? I'm all for innovative charms and rules. But only if needed. That being said no I don't think this needs to be toned up. It feels about right, save that perhaps, I might make it the exalts own perm essence. But that's merely personal preference. - Scrollreader Who was hoping to start /discussion/. Not imply any sort of non-constructive critism or force hasty defensiveness.
- Sorry. It was Telgar who rankled me, not you. In any case, all is forgiven, from me to both of you. And hopefully from you to me, because I confess, I snapped at you unfairly.
- That being said, you bring up an interesting concept. I had not been viewing temporary willpower points as such necessarily transitive things. Nor, indeed, as being so very different from essence. In my mind, willpower is mental energy, virtues are emotional energy, health levels are physical energy, and motes are magical energy. The various kinds of energy can be interchanged in various different ways. Potentially, I could see any kind of energy ending up "committed," due to the effect remaining in existence and somehow connected to its source, thus blocking new energy from taking its place.
- How would it strike you if, as an alternate mechanic, I were to instead reduce the charm-user's permanent Willpower by 1 for the duration of the charm, and amp up the effects just a little to make up for the other losses that incurs?
- As for "why this effect?", I must say it's because I like breaking the rules and pushing my boundaries. I like to make the system stand on its head, do backflips, and tie itself in knots, then un-knot and become straight again, just to prove that it can. Rules systems have nuances, and I enjoy exploring them as a thought exercise. And I do always have at least one world-mechanic in mind when I explore any given system mechanic, generally one I haven't seen represented before, or possible one I don't feel is represented well enough, or in the right nuance. - IanPrice
- To join into this lively conversation, I'll first say that I'm similar to Ian. Muck with things just as a mental exercise, to see where "fairness" lies. I've been working on a Level 5 artifact using S&S for a while now, and it's quite strange. Providing all sorts of bonuses (24 attribute points alone, and that's before we hit the other bonuses) but it's got a 25m commit. Fair? Who knows, we'll find out. Now then, onto the real discussion. I'm gonna first say that reducing one's Perm willpower, while mechanically similar, is very thematically different. In one case, you're 'tied up' right now. In another, you're actually less able to control yourself, less able to resist incoming effects, et cetera. One seems like a guy who is in control, deciding to throw some extra effort at this effect. The other one seems to imply that this effect is so far reaching that it's limiting the hero, literally sapping away at his force of will as it runs. But on to the real discussion - the applicability of committed WP. I can see both sides. Committed WP definitely does seem to fit exactly what Ian wants, so I can see why he'd take it. It's the first thing that springs to mind when you want to imply diverted attention, and focused concentration. The problem, as Scrollreader pointed out, is that other charms that should also have such, like PoCB, don't use this mechanic. In fact, depending on your outlook, a lot of things that involve long-term concentration don't commit WP. Take FFBS, for example. Yeah, you use a WP to activate it, but you don't commit it. Even though you're parrying 50 arrows a round, and it would seem that you should be concentrating like a madman. Same with a lot of scene-longs. My claim, then, is that committed WP isn't used in canon not because it's not applicable, but because it's a very slippery slope. Once you allow this charm to commit WP, what about the one above it? Does it commit two? Three? What about other charms people are making? Once committed WP becomes possible, it would be legit to apply it to other concentration based charms. Thing is, with WP already such a precious commodity, you'd end up with a Sidereal-like "too much commitment" problem on a lot of the Exalt-types. Plus, you'd be taking something vital from the character. You'd be claiming that their shard, and their Godly-given fragment of awesome, channeling the fundament of Creation itself, isn't enough to bend reality in that way, without significant expenditure of mortal will. (Begin bad analogy) When you run your computer, it's running tons of jobs, some requiring a lot of effort - yet you don't have to keep telling Firefox to load the next word of the page. You don't have to keep clicking on the MSWord icon just to keep reading a document. Sure, it took a 'click' to set it up - some exertion of your will. But the essence of the computer keeps it going for you. I'm claiming that by allowing commited WP, you're not only opening up a dangerous game of too much committed WP, but also weaking Essence thematically, when it is the juice that makes things go. If you want to make something last in Exalted, you spend a WP at the time you 'spin off' that Essence, and the Essence, so formed, will take care of things for you.(End bag analogy). Having ranted, then, I've got a theory. (Talking aloud helps me think. Sorry that it clutters the wiki.) In the rules of the setting, then, what you want is something that needs continual oomph to fuel. I'd claim that what you're looking for, then, is continual essence-needs from the charm. Sure, it costs, say, (8m 1WP) to start, but it also needs 2m per round to fuel. Or perhaps 2m per minute, or some such, depending on how long you want it to last. That way, you've got this 'Essence construct' you've created, but due to the work it's doing, it requires maintainance. Heck, I'd claim another appropriate mechanic would be that it'd consume a reflexive 0m charm action for the turn while active, thus meaning that the only way to keep it going while splitting your attention is to have trained with it extensively, thus developing a combo including it. Just some thoughts and ideas. -- GregLink
Obviously we're not entirely alike, since you don't just read what I write and go, "hey, yeah, that's exactly what I was thinking!" Then again, I'd hate that, and so would you, so this is much better.
Random tangentialness aside, the thing I'm playing around with in the final charm is mostly "what can I do with an Essence 4 charm which commits willpower." Your analogy isn't entirely bad (and I admit it especially fits since I said the motes aren't committed), but allow me to share what I was thinking. In Creation, it is the fusion of the divine shard and the mortal frame and will which creates an Exalt. Since the mortal's will is bounded by his very mortality, that gives it a vitality and intensity not shared by other beings' wills. Thus, the mortal will is as essential to the power of Exaltation, just as much as the divine spark is. In this charm, I am positing that the committed willpower represents a portion of that will being set up as a filter for everything the Exalt experiences. Thus, it's not useful for any other purpose, and can't be regained. This is also why I suggested the alternate mechanic that I did - yes, I do see this as an effect that could sap a portion of the person's will for the duration. This charm is all about the will fueling the whole of the person.
Another alternate mechanic might be to require the expenditure of a WP every turn to keep the charm active. In this case, I'd allow multiple WP (though still only one virtue channel) to be regained each round. This would not only represent a constant drain on the will, but also reflect how the charm is self-fueling in a way. - IanPrice
Ian - I'm actually really into the idea that it's self-fueling by both consuming and granting temp WP. The only thing that'd be real difficult is to balance it out with non-combat use. Do you want the charm to be able to sustain itself for 30 seconds of non-combat time? Do you want the charm to be able to sustain itself for 5 minutes of non-combat? Once you go with the temp-fueling thing, at most, it'll keep itself up for 10 rounds of non-fueled time, so it really locks it into a "I'm currently in the middle of a difficult combat, so I'm now engaging the essence-fueling engine". As a proposed 'trick', I'd say that the charm will endure for a number of unpowered rounds equal to the number of rounds that it did receive power. Thus, once you stop paying for it, it'll last that long again as it 'spins down'. You could feed it some more WP to keep it going a bit longer if you wanted by spinning it up again. Then again, maybe that's not the effect you want. Either way, I'm saying that as an outside observer, the "WP in, WP out" cycle seems most interesting. -- GregLink
- I do want it to be a thing for "in the middle of a difficult combat." It's based on the Essence-Gathering Temper tree, so it's fundamentally about the way pain and rage heighten everything for an Exalt, since the Exalted were all designed as soldiers for the gods. Change made. - IanPrice