Thus Spake Zaraborgstrom/JoyInAdversityStance

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(SeeThus_Spake_Zaraborgstrom/ImpedingTheFlow for RSB's comments on how Joy in Adversity Stance interacts with that charm.)

rebeccaborgstrom - 11/29/2003 16:29:22

To remove some confusion, I'm restating some things I said earlier.

Q1: What would you recommend as errata/a house rule? A1: JiAS only triggers on a rolled defense.

This is the recommendation referred to.

Q2: What if you want to fix it without making actual changes? A2: If the attack can't beat the defense chosen, you could argue that the attacker is temporarily "not a threat".

This is the argument some people don't buy.

Q3: Does it need to be fixed? A3: Depends. Holds, disarms, and social attacks won't trigger JiAS. Unblockable attacks work around it. Is that enough? Up to you.


rebeccaborgstrom - 12/02/2003 17:55:31

. . . Wow.

I thought this was going to be an easy question. After looking at Breath-Seizing Technique, it's not.

I have two tests in my head.

  • Are you perfectly okay with your friend doing this to you?
  • If you're an Eclipse sworn not to hurt someone, can you do this to them?

Joint-Wounding Technique fails both tests outright.\\ Breath-Seizing Technique . . . I think it may only fail test 1.

It sounds unpleasant, and all, but it seems to be explicitly a knockout/subdual technique that doesn't inflict any damage or aftereffects. Choking someone unconscious physically is nasty, dangerous, and hurts like heck, but there's no indication that automatically applies to magical attacks---you can stunt it as painless, the target gets dizzier and dizzier until she faints, and in fact *causing* pain might require a stunt.

OTOH, if you rule it fails test 2, it definitely trigger JiAS. :)


rebeccaborgstrom - 12/02/2003 18:51:19

Nah. They're just ways I think about whether an attack is really meant to harm you.

The Charm rewards surviving serious danger. It's serenity and joy in unserene and horrid times. But because of how it works, it only affects stuff that's dangerous in the instant it gets triggered. It's "whew, close one!" not "whew, that would have been tactically bad."

Joint-Wounding looks like just a different kind of damage to me---it's physical damage that doesn't happen to use the wound track, much like ripping out someone's muscles and instantly-sealing the wound to reduce their Dex and Strength. If someone's trying to rip out my muscles or shove daggers in my elbows, I'm in danger, even if they're using a Charm that keeps it from doing health levels. If someone's trying to make me feel dizzy, I'm not sure.

It's . . . I just can't imagine someone shouting, "Don't hurt her! If she's hurt, the world will bleed with her!" followed by a Circlemate calling back, "Okay! I'll just use Joint-Wounding Attack!"

Of course, that's probably why Joint-Wounding does penalties on top of damage, while Breath-Stealing Technique just does penalties. :)



I hope I'm not speaking out of turn... but perhaps a better criteria would be "JiA only activates if the attack remains a credible threat after the defense is chosen." This would thus rule out cheapness like using Seven Shadow/Impeding the Flow to have infinite perfection. Like you said, the Charm rewards surviving by the skin of your teeth. if there's no tension, there's no emotional high to regain motes from.

It would also remove such lameness as trying to hit someone using Consuming Might of the Fire Dragon with fire-based attacks and claiming that it *was* a credible threat, because when you're immune to fire, (which CMotFD does), it's not.

Pardon my impertinence, but I needed to add my two cents.

- Damarus

But still, how do you determine a credible threat? Most of us would think that parrying a 3 die attack against a 24 dice defense is no credible threat, but what happens when it hits and kills the Sidereal (yes, this is an exaggeration, but I've often seen an attack beat a defence roll twice it's size, and the martial artist can't wear armor)

An opponent can still be a threat even when using perfect defenses As you turn from your fight with the demon you see the monstrous head of what you can only guess to be a Yozi rize up behind you, opening it maw to unleash an utter darkness that rushes toward you... I use Heavenly Guardian Defense!!! Ok, but you don't get anything from JiAS as you see the land all around you devestated by 284L after his 134 successes to attack

Just a long way of saying that I think the wording of the charm says the enemy has to be a threat to you, not the individual attack. - Myrlan

I would say it is the attack that has to be the threat, partly for game balance, partly because it doesnt matter quite often. Where is the Adversity in a Perfect Defence? You knew that you would stop the attack with no harm to yourself, so where was the threat? The idea of the charm is you threw your life on the line, or the varigates of uncontrolled fate, and you came out the other side alive, not merely that at no risk to yourself you stopped a blow that would sunder creation in twain. - Kraken

First, in my opinion the text doesn't support that (but I grant you her subsequent comments do). Second, how is there any more adversity in succeeding a rolled parry than by making it automatically, especially when you have a die pool advantage? At that point why not take it the next step and wait until after every attack roll: sorry, he only rolled 4 suc. on that attack, you don't JiAS from it. That one's 16 suc., though. Since that's over half your defence pool you'll get JiAS from that one... Plus, do you really want to decide every attack from each enemy against each character with it (it's only second tier and MA is universal)? And you still haven't said what die pool disparity is enough that an attack is no longer a threat. Just my thoughts - Myrlan

For the dicepool disparity, I'd probably say you wouldnt get the rolls for attacks less than half your pool or for attacks that would only do ping - especially mortal ping (unless you're badly hurt). I personally base the gamble on the pool sizes not the successes, so if they are rolling 10 dice to attack and you are parrying with 10 (from whatever source) you'd get to roll to regain motes whether they got 1 or 10 successes. And yes, you have to decide every attack for every enemy (though for many enemies, attack and enemy will be synoymous), especially because its MA and thus universal. A DB with a Daikliave might well be a threat to a low dex begining practictioner of the art. The same DB isnt nearly so much of a threat to an essence 7 Elder Sidereal who has mastered the style and several others and has a base pool in the high-twenties when he's fired off a few scene length charms. That same dragonblood might be able to threaten the Elder Sidereal a time or two, if he uses many charms to power his attacks. - Kraken

My houserule on JiAS is that it only works on dodges and martial arts parries. This largely eliminates the ItF problem. It also vastly reduces the effective tactics of using the persisant dodge with ItF, as to get the bonus you'd always have to use the parry first. This seems to me to be the simplest effective solution; it deosn't require any special conditions, logic, or testing. -Fifth

I don't understand, how is persistant dodge less effective? What do you mean you have to use the parry first? That does get rid of the ItF, but not perfect dodges, do you allow SSE or DF (also, does anyone that has a problem with ItF allow DF because it has a chance of failure?) - Myrlan

Ok. First of all, the only perfect dodge Sidereals have cost them 10 motes, making JiAS less than ideal. Here is the reasoning on making the persistant dodge less effective: One of the best tactics a Sidereal can use is to stack their persisant dodge with ItF; they use their dodge first, and if it fails, they break out ItF. This keeps their mote expenditure down, and with JiAS, it's a very effective tactic; they regain motes at quite a large rate. By making it so ItF doesn't work, however, this means that the Sidereal has to radically rethink his strategy. Now, if his opponent can overwhelm his dodge pools remotely well, the Sidereal will find himself blocking most attacks with ItF; he'll most likely be losing motes instead of regaining them. The tactic is still very good and viable, but removing ItF from the equation opens up quite a few strategies for beating it. I dislike making a ruling that perfect effects don't work with JiAS, because for me, the wording of JiAS has nothing to do with the defense you use; it's all about the attack. So my solution "fixes" the problem neatly without changing the focus of JiAS, which I like immensely better. -Fifth

Ok, I think I understand what you're saying about persistent dodge and ItF. I certainly think your method is easier than deciding each attack, but denying ItF while still allowing Seven Shadow Evasion seems odd. Does the 6m cost or the fact that it's a Solar charm make it tenable? - Myrlan

ItF doesn't work because it's a Melee charm, while SSE is a dodge. My fix is to make it so JiAS works on dodges and martial arts parries. It's nothing to do with the charms themselves. -Fifth

I'm sorry, I thought you made JiAS not work with melee because of ItF. Why did you make that change if combining JiAS with automatic defenses like ItF and SSE was not a problem? - Myrlan

That's true... let me try to clarify. My problem with using ItF with JiAS is that it is too good of a defense. It allows a Sidereal to generally regain motes against every attack with no chance of failure. Adding in a persistant dodge just makes the situation practically impossible (although if you know them, there are easy ways around the strategy). However, I have no problem with the general idea of using perfect defenses with JiAS; but a 3 mote no willpower one presents some problems. Therefore, my solution is not aimed specifically at the charm; I dislike making exceptions; and it is not aimed at perfects, because I believe that perfect defenses should work with JiAS. But making melee (or even brawl) parries incompatible is simple and accomplishes what I want to do with the change, and can also be argued to be thematic. I prefer elegant solutions to complex ones; adding one word to the charm description is much simpler than adding an entire list of exceptions. -Fifth

That makes some amount of sense, I think, and is an admirably elegant way to go about it. - willows

BotBM isn't is powerful as it's cracked up to be. For starters you gotta commit that essence for the whole scene, and if that wasn't bad enough you're down two willpower. All for a little attack and parry adder, hell it's useless against the dematerialized, and you can't parry all attacks/effects. Now IMO JiAS is much more powerful it allows you to use stunts and duck Fate to become a mote generating unhittable engine of pain whenever they win initiative, which becomes often from SoFS. - Issaru

JiAS discussion is a little ungermane here, but I was under the impression that using perfect dodge/parry effects (Duck Fate, ItF, and so on) didn't generate with any Essence with JiAS, since one has to be in genuine "adversity" due to an attack (and one isn't if one perfects away from it)? Also, using clever dodge/parry stunts with JiAS seems like half the point. -- AntiVehicleRocket
That's a houserule, and, IMO, a nonsensical one at that. - willows
Ah, right. I find it reasonable, personally, but YMMV -- and anyway, this has already been covered on Thus_Spake_Zaraborgstrom/JoyInAdversityStance and isn't that germane to BotBM anyway. (Is there a BotBM discussion page? If not, we may need one.) -- AntiVehicleRocket
I think every Sidereal page is a BotBM discussion page. -MeiRen

I coulda sworn Joy in Adversity Stance didn't activate on perfects as a matter of cannon, but I guess the wording is a little ambiguous. -MeiRen