WillowsInfernal

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The Infernal Exalted

This is a collaborative project; everyone is invited to add content here. Label it. My hope is to assemble a fatsplat-style compendium that makes Infernals playable as full PCs. In service of that cause, I have begun the project by departing dramatically from canon, to create a category of beings that serve the Yozis but retain free will, unlike their closely related akuma brethren.

I will make my design notes as explicit as possible, so that, hopefully, it will be possible for other fans to use them, and the precedent of already-written Charms, to create Charms of their own design that fit the model already presented. If everyone who participates sticks to this faithfully, then we'll have a nice, internally consistent product at the end. This also means, if you have a CoolCharmIdea, it is your responsibility to write it up as a Charm (minimally, a name, type, cost, and rough mechanical effect), not anyone else's.

I have this image of Infernals as 'dream samurai': they're beautiful, enigmatic, insane nobility with a certain sense of foreignness. This is directly to provide counterpoint to the Abyssal image of 'deathknights', the gentry of a very familiar darkness, and the faerie image of 'dream predators', mad antagonists who just happen to feed on emotions. Infernal Charms should make sense in this light - it's clear when you see an Infernal fight, because the world blooms with impossibilities about them.

willows says: I owe ikselam a large debt of gratitude for showing me his in-progress Charm list, which was an invaluable source of ideas. Thanks, man.

Okay, so. I have a lot of Abilities that I have not even started yet, and I am resurrecting this project! So, like, if you have any Charm ideeas (Keep in mind the wuxia maddness style), then please post them, particularly in the Abilities that have not been started yet! - willows

Links

Other Angles

  • IkselamInfernal: Another take on Infernals. Ikselam's Infernals don't have Charms yet, but he's written a lot of cosmology, which is useful and interesting! His Infernals are very different from mine, which is just getting cooler and cooler as bits of his project get Wikified and unveiled. If you don't find my work interesting, give his a look!
  • DBSInfernalExalted: DeathBySurfeit recently entered the fray with this delightful effort, in which I see well-placed nods to Roger's work and my own, mixed with DBS's own special brand of creativity. This, too, is well worth the read.

Infernal Topics

WillowsInfernal/Artifacts WillowsInfernal/BodyModification WillowsInfernal/InfernalAnimas WillowsInfernal/Infernalism WillowsInfernal/Limit WillowsInfernal/Manses

Charms

General Notes

Magic

Infernals have the same dice-adding cap as Solars and Abyssals: Attribute + Ability. However, most of their dice-adders are capped at Limit; as a result they are forced to use multiple dice-adders (and thus Combos) to get high dicepools, unless they are quite pissed off. So Infernals actually get less flashy as they get angrier, because their Charms rapidly become more efficient and self-sufficient. Another outgrowth of this is that Infernals, deliberately, have redundant dice-adders, or dice-adders that add full pools (see the Melee attack adders in Melee and Linguistics), but only in restricted situations. These are tools, not speedbumps. Similarly, they have a wide range of Charms that add small bonuses in large areas (see Awareness, Orabilis' Theophanic Reinterpretation), to facilitate their Limit-based enhancers.

Infernal Charms come from two sources; one type is the Yozi-derived Charm. These resonate with a Yozi's Essence pattern, and permit the Infernals to emulate their masters. As a result, Yozi-derived Charms are exotic in imagery and permit unusual, impossible effects, including breaking general Solar metarules. These Charms can be summarized as "Solar Charms with access to symbolic manipulation". See the Thrown Charms for some examples of these. Generally, they should be pretty far out, but not as far out as Sidereal weirdness. Many of them vary in visual effect (Endurance, Auspices of Brass and Amber) or in mechanical effect (Awareness, Shifting Axiom Experiment) depending upon from whom they draw their inspiration.

The second type is the instinctual Infernal Charm; these draw upon the Infernal's own Essence without outside aid. These can take advantage of more unusual resources with greater freedom, such as HLs, external objects, Limit, and so forth, but have access only to metarule-legal effects. Observe the difference between Melee, Labyrinth of Destruction, an internal effect, and Dodge, Ninefold Darkness Defense, an external (Yozi-derived, symbol manipulating) effect.

Infernals are generally better at doing several things in quick succession or simultaneously than they are at doing one thing very well; they have a harder time reaching perfection than true Solars do (see the depth and requirements of Melee, Emerald Soul Defence), but have an extensive and potent array of Extra or Independent Action effects (Archery, Many Mirrors Shot to Bloody Rapture Volley).

As a result of their need to exist veiled in a world where Exalts were commonplace, and subsequently in a world where Exalts were either masters to be obeyed or Anathema to be feared, Infernals developed Charms in nearly every Ability (Brawl, Flowery Lineage-Igniting Technique; Dodge, Underling-Trampling Dance) that have social applications; social defenses appear in nearly every Ability (Melee, Fundamental Deflection), while several have social attacks, and the truly social Abilities are fields where Infernals really shine. They interact, though, in direct opposition to the manipulation of Sidereals. Nearly all Infernal social effects require his presence and action to take place; compare Socialize, Another Woman Meditation to Sidereal Socialize, Wanting and Fearing Prayer.

Finally, the word Technique sucks. Don't use it. Your Charm names will be better for it.

The Shard and The Curse

Infernals are twisted Solars. They have Essence pools of like size, and their Limits Break in a similar manner - they become ruled by the Virtue governing their Flaw, to the exclusion of others (and hopefully, counter to Yozi goals.) When acting in Flaw, they are considered to have Limit 0. Their anima banners are comparable, but their icons generally reflect some aspect of the Yozi who 'owns' their shard, and their color distributions are less harmonious; a Blasphemous might wear a banner of bleached vermilion and sky blue, rather than the whites and golds of a proper Zenith.

Word Bank

  • air, anthem, aria, ballad, canticle, carol, chant, chorale, chorus, ditty, expression, golden oldie, hymn, lay, lullaby, lyric, melody, number, oldie, opera, piece, poem, psalm, refrain, rock, round, shanty, strain, tune, verse, vocal
  • ballad, canticle, canzonet, chorus, Christmas song, ditty, lay, madrigal, noel, song, strain
  • burden, chorale, main section, melody, motif, music, recurrent verse, response, ritornelle, song, strain, theme, tune, undersong
  • allure, allurement, artistry, attraction, bloom, charm, class, comeliness, delicacy, elegance, exquisiteness, fairness, fascination, glamour, grace, handsomeness, loveliness, polish, pulchritude, refinement, shapeliness, style, symmetry, winsomeness
  • arbitrate, conciliate, intercede, interfere, intermediate, interpose, intervene, negotiate, propitiate, reconcile, referee, resolve
  • appraise, appreciate, approximate, arrive, ascertain, assess, check, collect, conclude, condemn, consider, criticize, decide, decree, deduct, derive, determine, discern, distinguish, doom, draw, esteem, estimate, evaluate, examine, find, gather, make, make out, mediate, pass sentence, place, pronounce sentence, put, rate, reckon, referee, resolve, review, rule, sentence, settle, sit, size up, suppose, test, try, umpire, value
  • anarchy, bewilderment, blurring, clamor, commotion, complexity, complication, confusion, consternation, daze, demoralization, din, disarranging, disarray, discomfiture, distraction, disturbing, dumbfounding, ferment, fog, furor, haze, intricacy, labyrinth, maelstrom, mystification, obscuring, pandemonium, perplexing, perplexity, perturbation, racket, riot, row, shambles, tangle, trouble, tumult, turbulence, turmoil, unsettling, upheaval, uproar, upsetting, wilderness, abandonment, aberration, agitation, convulsion, craze, delirium, derangement, distemper, dogma, frenzy, insanity, intoxication, hatred, hysteria, madness, monomania, passion, rage, rapture, superstition, violence, willfulness, zeal, zealotry
  • artifice, craft, craftiness, cunning, deceit, deception, duplicity, entrapping, fraud, guile, hypocrisy, imposition, imposture, overreaching, pretence, treachery.
  • abstract, arcane, baffling, beyond comprehension, cabalistic, cryptic, deep, enigmatic, esoteric, fathomless, hidden, impenetrable, incognizable, incomprehensible, inconceivable, inscrutable, intricate, murky, mysterious, mystifying, obscure, oracular, perplexing, profound, puzzling, subtle, tenebrous, unfathomable, ungraspable, unimaginable, unknowable.
  • arthropods, invertebrates.

Thoughts

Performance

As a note, Performance should be a general exception to the whole madness and evil thing.

"Only in the music of the realm do the Yozi's relent. They are both dancers and singers beyond mortal peer, and though there songs may destroy as easily as heal, there is no malice in them." - Games of Divinity, page 86.  :) - DariusSolluman

Very, very nice thought. Thanks for the ref, Darius... I think I can still introduce madness, of a different kind, with that, but it would be a great place to put in a tree of Compassion Charms. Maybe Music could be an Infernal schtick, though I can't work out a way to do that without stepping on Sidereal toes. It definitely gives me a place to put all those healing Charms that Medicine has no place for (being the body-and-Essence-modification ability for Infernals) - FourWillowsWeeping

Another Thought on Primordials and Abilities

Bear with me. As has been noted, each Primordial sorta lines up with one of the Abilities. There are two Universal Abilities, and two Free Primordials. Coincidence? I think not!

So, clearly Gaia is a Kung Foo babe, and Autobot is the Occultist Supreme. Sorcery, his gift to the world, is universal- his long seperation has started to see a differentation in Occult Charms, however. Gaia, still active in the world, keeps the flows of Essence natural and normal, making them all the same.

(Or strike that and reverse it- Brigit's supposed to have been purified at the five elemental poles before learning Sorcery, after all...)

Does this have any bearing? Not necessarily- but it might have some interesting ramifications for Infernal MAists, or their sorcerous ability...

- DariusSolluman

Interesting thought there, Darius - what implications do you see coming out of that? I like Gaia the Kung Fu Primordial, myself... I certainly can't imagine a Golden Sprocket of Autobot Style... gah. This probably means that Infernal MAists are't very good, nor are Infernal sorcerors. - FourWillowsWeeping


Then again there is the other view on the whole sorcery thing. If by some chance you haven't heard it...

Mara, Demon of the second circle, is described as sharing likeness with a tree- or forest spirit, and she prefers hanging out in the east. It is said that she can be summoned by grief for a loved one, or seven tears shed into a still forest pool. Her arrival is heralded by an arc of shooting stars across the heavens. (Storyteller's Compainion, pg 74)

Brigid the going-to-be first sorcerer, being something of a klutz when it came to charms and therefore useless in the primordial war, travelled far into the east on a sort of self-imposed exile. There she stopped by a clear pool in the forest and cried about having left her Lunar spouse behind. After that she went to sleep, and awoke to see a shooting star above. As she was marveling at the sight, she was hailed by a forest spirit, and was told that "my masters smile upon you" and that she would be given "knowledge of power far beyond your peers". (Bo3C, pg. 9-10)

The above suggests that infernals would actually make pretty kick-ass sorcerers, I think. :) - Melle

Yeah, it does. The discussion above predates the popularizing of that theory by a fair sight, I think, but as it stands, Infernals are just as good at Sorcery as Solars, plus they can summon demons better. In exchange, I think they might be Celestial-status in terms of Necromancy, having accessonly to the Shadowlands Circle...I dunno. - willows

Hey! I´m going to run an Akuma series for my current campaign, and I´m inviting you and everyone who wants to join to make a small, playable e-book for the Akuma. I´ll be doing some illustrations for the project, which will look like the introduction to Dragon Kings on Ruins Of Rathess book. Nothing too deep, nothing to shallow. Go to my user page here -> Sindaen <-- to find out more. Thanks!

I doubt that the Infernals would have any access to Necromancy at all, given the stated strained state of affairs between the Yozis and the Malfeans, who essentially govern the mysteries of death, and thus of Necromancy. It is questionable whether they would be able to access Solar circle sorcery, although I have yet to think of a good mechanical reason why, exactly that would be... I like the Mara connection, though.  :) In any event, they should be good sorcerers, but I'd imagine that the Yozi's would look unfavorably on their diversionary shock troops having the same level of ability to betray them that the Solars had to defeat them in the first place. Just my opinion, though. - Suzume

Hmm, one thought is that perhaps Infernal charms could summon demons(frex Agate in the ride tree), partially inspired by the Sidereal Astrology effect that summons Adorjan. I'm also haveing trouble grocking the theme, but am reading more. Anyway, cool job so far. -FlowsLikeBits

An odd little thought from someone with vast amounts of time on their hands... Abyssals get Void Circle Necromancy, Solars get Solar Circle Sorcery, why wouldn't another line of magic be sensible here? I know that that's a large undertaking, but I thought it would make sense to bring up. It would seem that either chaos/madness themed magic or a very VERY demon heavy version of sorcery's effects. Personally, the chaos/madness bit seems more likely as it would be in tune with their loony masters as opposed to binding their lords and masters. - EwindaleMoss

Misc. Questions

Do you have a way to make these? Do they use standard solar rules? Or do you just have charms and stuff? I've been itching to make an Infernal since I saw this page and I now have an oppurtunity to do so. ~Overshee

I suggest doing the "conversion" thing, replacing your favorite akuma rules with these. A little like a redeemed Abyssal, convert half their Charms (they keep the other half) and from that point onward, they only learn new Infernal Charms but not those of their old type. Creating one from scratch, I'd use Solar dots. - willows

Your Infernals are almost exactly what I was hoping to do inside my campaign with minor tweaks. Mind if I use them? (Proper credit and such to be given, just it's a very nice system and I don't like borrowing without credit and permission) - EwindaleMoss

Feel free to use them in your game in whatever way you choose. That's what the wiki is for! Please don't repost my work (or modified versions of it) anywhere on the Web. - willows
Domo Arigato and duly noted. - EwindaleMoss
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