Southern Cross Awakening CofD VSS

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Mage: The Awakening

VSS

1. ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION

1.1. Venue Details

Venue Name: Of Mysteries and Men
Venue Code: SCMtA2.0 OMM
Domain Name: Southern Cross
Domain Number: AUD000
Domain Code: SC

Approval: GST-MAGECOFD-20171101

1.2. Venue Personnel

VST: Joshua Smith - 2014020035
VC: Roman Hadley-Lund - 2016070016
DST: Beau Grace - 2010050001
DC: Alex Thomson - 2012010001

1.3. Game Location, Time and Fees:

Game Location: Game on Discord. Server at https://discord.gg/A3pgjMN
Game Time: Game on Discord. 1 set time live game per month. Times and Dates for 2017 available here
Game Fees: N/A

1.4. Mailing lists, websites and other online resources used:

Southern Cross currently has no dedicated website although most of our information can be found on the wiki at http://wiki.beyondthesunset.org.au/

Information about our games can also be found on our facebook group page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/1710440142557058/

The forums can be located at http://spi.freeforums.net/

For out of character mailing lists, please go to ooc.southerncross@lists.beyondthesunset.org.au

The game venue can be found on Discord https://discord.gg/A3pgjMN

The official addenda should be referred to for in-game content at http://wiki.shadowplayinternational.org/index.php/Global_Addenda_and_Settings_Documents, please refer to Chronicles of Darkness (NWoD 2nd Edition), Mage: the Awakening 2e for the appropriate content and their approval levels.

2. GAME INFORMATION

2.1. Genre

Chronicles of Darkness: Mage: the Awakening CofD

2.2. Setting

Launceston, Tasmania
[Launceston Wikipedia Article]

2.2.1. Introduction:

In this world, you are one of the privileged; one of the Awakened. Here you have been gifted the ability to see and understand the truth of the world around you.
And it is sad.
Everywhere around you, people, the non-magical, must exist in a world of oppression and dullness. They must exist in the Lie. Your goal as Awakened is to have enough power to be a beacon to the Sleepers, the non-magical, to help them awakened. You must decide how you will achieve this.
You must decide what philosophy will you live by as an Awakened.

2.2.2. The City:

Launceston in 2017 has continued to expand with population now exceeding 150,000 residents, becoming a model of ecological conservation and rural life style in the city.

2.3. Themes & Mood

Power: Everything is about power. Political power, arcane power, temporal power; all are the means to ends. But everyone wants power. Some want it for altruistic goals, others for themselves. Some people want to share power, others want to hoard it. Wherever you stand, whatever you believe, nothing survives or succeeds for want of power. But even still, one who seeks power must be wary, for it is said that power inevitably corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely...

Deception: The Lie, the Veil; call it what you like but the effect is the same. In the fallen world, magic is hidden and the supernatural remains a secret; which is to say nothing of more mundane subterfuge. Knowledge is power but only when it is secret, and in a world built on knowledge secrets are worth more than gold. But those who crave knowledge and dig up secrets should look before they leap, because there may yet be things that men weren't meant to know and knowing too much can get you killed...

Consequences: Action and reaction; cause and effect. What you do has an effect on the world around you, and when you can change the world with a thought the effects can be staggering. Change a mind, heal a wound, alter a destiny; the world can change course entirely for good or ill with even the smallest of actions. But sometimes the world doesn't want to change, and when the world fights back it fights back hard...

Amorality: "There are no moral phenomena" says Nietzsche, "only moral interpretations of phenomena". Truth is an often invoked but ill-defined idea, especially where ideas of "right" and "wrong" are concerned. What one Order sees as necessary another sees as heresy, and within Orders there is no consensus on how goals should be pursued. Then there are others, Seers and Banishers and worse, who all see things differently. But they are all wrong, right...?

2.4. Preferred character types, and restrictions

Players are encouraged to read the city and venue history document. Any amount of time awakened is acceptable unless where against the global addenda. More experienced players are recommended to play experienced mages, new players to the genre are recommended to play newly awakened and come to understand the system as their characters do. Experienced mages are encouraged to mentor newer mages. Sleepwalkers and Proximii can be played on the caveat that the player has written a reasonable and in depth justification to the character concept.

A balance and wide array of skills is preferred to a character with a high focus in one area alone. That is not to say they will be denied outright, just that a preference will be given to well spread characters. Any character who has been awakened for longer than 6 months should have at least a single dot in Occult to represent what it means to be Awakened and understand their arcane ability, on top of the free dot given for being a member of an order. Players should have dot spreads that accurately represent their character’s abilities.

Characters with an attribute at 1 dot will be considered Mid Approval as minimum human average for any attribute is 2 dots in this VSS.

Player characters under eighteen are not permitted.

2.5. Location of Venue history information

Southern Cross Awakening CofD History

2.6. Transport In/ Out Information

Tasmania can be accessed by land, air, sea, and portal with no impediment. Launceston can be accessed by any method whatsoever. Changes to the control of transport within the city is at the jurisdiction of the Venue Storyteller with approval from the Domain Storyteller.

3. EXTERNAL FACTORS INFORMATION

3.1. Experience Awards

3.1.1. Creation

All primary characters receive 150 + their MC x 5 in beats as per the universal addenda.
All secondary characters receive 50 in beats as per the universal addenda.
In addition, characters may also receive experience points at creation for the following at the discretion of the VST–
Character Creation Document: 20 beats for the completion of a Character Creation Document (can only be claimed once per character).
Character Ties: 1 beat per character tie at Character creation (Max 5)
Wiki Pages: 15 beats for creation of a detailed Wiki page for your character (can only be claimed once per character.)
Game Materials: 1 beat for creating game materials that benefit the majority of characters (Creating maps, NPC’s, plots, places of interest, world building items etc.) at discretion of VST.
Note: These XP bonuses are considered creation XP and are not subject to the Incremental Maximum

3.1.2. Monthly Experience

Game attendance: 3 beats at conclusion of the game.
Downtime Submission: 6 beats for submission when received on or before cut-off time.
Downtime Actions: 1 beat when performing actions that are dedicated to resolving aspirations, at discretion of VST.
RTR’s: 1 beat for participating in with a supervising storyteller present, or when submitting a report to the VST, at discretion of the VST (max 3 per month).
Online Activity: 1 beat for updating and maintaining online resources (SPI forums, Online Diary, etc) of character, at the discretion of the VST.
Resolving mundane Conditions: 1 beat at discretion of VST.
Major progress towards Aspirations: 1 beat when making major strides towards fulfilling long-term Aspirations at discretion of VST.
Dramatic Mundane Failure: 1 beat when potential for dice roll and you elect to take a dramatic failure to further the narrative. At discretion of VST.
“I train you” actions: 1 beat per month. This is when you use your action to train someone else.
Vice and Virtue: 1 beat when players gain all WP back from indulging their Vice or Virtue completely.
Game Materials: 1 beat (Upto 5 in a month)
Circle of Love nomination: 1 beat
Circle of Love winner: 2 beats
Arcane Beats:
· Fulfill or make major headway into an Obsession
· Resolve a Condition resulting from spellcasting, Paradox, or a magical effect
· Dramatic Failure on a spellcasting roll in lieu of standard failure
· Risking an Act of Hubris against Wisdom
· Legacy tutorage scene
· Meaningful and new encounter with the supernatural

3.1.3 Circle of Love

At the conclusion of every game, members enter the Circle of Love Nominations channel on the Discord server and tag their favourite player to nominate them for Circle of Love. After a period of 48 hours (2 days from the conclusion of game) the votes are tallied and a winner is announced to venue.

3.2. Custom Rules

Below are the following custom or altered rules for this VSS.

3.2.1. Attribute Approval

Characters with an attribute at 1 dot will be considered Mid Approval as human average for any attribute is 2 dots in this VSS.

3.2.2. Buying Arcana in Downtime

Ruling: .5 actions x dot being learned, rounded up

• 1 action for 1st and 2nd
• 2 actions for 3rd and 4th
• 3 actions for 5th dot

Common: 1 action x dot being bought

• 1 action for 1st dot
• 2 actions for 2nd dot
• 3 actions for 3rd dot
• 4 actions for 4th dot
• 5 actions for 5th dot *

Weak: 2 actions x dot being bought

• 2 actions for 1st dot
• 4 actions for 2nd dot
• 6 actions for 3rd dot *
• 8 actions for 4th dot *
• 10 actions for 5th dot *
*Requires Teacher

3.2.3. Imbued Items

Imbued items are defined as items which have a spell incorporated into the object. Imbued Items can also be Enhanced Items. An Imbued Item requires one point of Mana and the activation manoeuvre in order to activate the spell stored inside. The rolls to activate an Imbued Item is based on your character's Gnosis + the item's Arcana rating (i.e. the rating of the Arcana of the user who creates the item at the time of item creation). If the item is used by someone without Gnosis (or an equivalent Powerstat) the roll is made purely by the Arcana rating of the item. The activation manoeuvre of the item is defined when the item is created, this can be an action, word, phrase, or more.
This merit is not bound by a maximum of 5 dots. The number of dots on the merit is equal to the Arcana required to perform the rote + additional Mana stored inside the object (like a battery). Each additional dot beyond the minimum requirements for the Arcana adds 2 Mana to the object. Restoring the Mana in an Imbued Item requires an hour of casting per dot with Mana equivalent to the Caster's ability to channel Gnosis. An Imbued Item may have 6+ dots if it contains a Master level spell and a Mana Battery.
Imbued Items have a base Paradox pool of 1 dice + the user's Gnosis + any extra Reach effects the users adds. Mages can spend the Mana in the Imbued Item to mitigate Paradox rather than their own, but they are still limited to what they are able to manipulate based on their Gnosis. Paradox from Imbued Items cannot be contained by a Willworker and will automatically be released into the environment.

3.2.4. Artifacts

Understanding how to use an Artifact requires an extended research roll equal to twice the dot rating of the Artifact (e.g. a 5 dot Artifact will require an extended research roll with a target of 10 successes) or may be scrutinised with Prime on an extended roll equal to the dot rating of the Artifact to determine how it works. This merit has a minimum or 3 dots and may exceed 5 dots at creation.
The Artifact can store up to twice the dot rating in Mana as an internal battery to power it. An Artifact cannot naturally perform Reach, it requires the use of a Willworker to add Reach to any effect used by an Artifact. An Artifact will automatically release Paradox unless the Willworker spends his own Mana to contain it.
All Artifacts add a +1 modifier to Yantras (this is a Yantra of 1, not a boost to all Yantras by 1) performed by any willworker whose Path's Ruling Arcana match the highest Arcanum rating of the Artifact. For clarity this means:

  • Acanthus receive +1 when an Artifact's highest Arcanum is Time or Fate
  • Mastigos receive +1 when an Artifact's highest Arcanum is Mind or Space
  • Moros receive +1 when an Artifact's highest Arcanum is Death or Matter
  • Obrimos receive +1 when an Artifact's highest Arcanum is Forces or Prime
  • Thyrsus receive +1 when an Artifact's highest Arcanum is Life or Spirit

3.2.5. Hallows

The Hallow must be defined when taking the merit and describe how it releases Mana into the world. A Hallow can only produce one mana per dot in the merit per day. A Hallow can only allow 3 x dot units of Tass to accrue inside it before it becomes unable to continue producing Tass or Mana until the Tass is harvested. A Hallow can become tainted by Supernatural effects, an Arcana, and in extreme cases an emotion. A Hallow influenced by an Arcana will produce Tass that provides a +1 benefit when being used with the appropriate Arcana and a -1 modifier when used without. A Hallow infused with an emotion provides a +1 benefit to all actions that coincide with that emotion, a -1 modifier when used without, and a -2 when used against that emotion.
The Hallow merit can be shared amongst a Cabal. A character may take the Hallow merit multiple times.
The Hallow merit allows extra rerolls for starting game Mana per dot in Hallow. Starting Mana is defined in 3.3. Mana

3.2.6. Willpower

A Mage cannot gain or access more willpower than is available on her sheet as Resolve+Composure, unless they possess specific merits which allow them access to more Willpower than their base pool. Spells that may allow the Mage to effectively gain "infinite willpower" do not work and attempts to perform them will lose a Mage willpower. A Mage may regain willpower by the fulfilment of their Vice or Virtue.

3.2.7. Sleepwalkers

Sleepwalkers may be created via the spell "Stealing Fire". It is possible to convince the Sleepwalker to hold the spell for a Mage in order to not go back to sleep. However the spell may be dispelled by another Mage at any time. Attempts to hang spells on Sleepwalkers requires their full un-coerced consent in order to work. A sleepwalker holding a spell for a Mage has either a medium or strong sympathetic to that mage. It is not possible to create infinite Sleepwalkers using this method.

3.2.8. Limited Spells

The following spells are either limited or not sanctioned in this venue, with the only exception being reserved for plot.

  • Shifting Sands (Time •••) - Reach may not be added into this spell for travelling back more than 4 rounds, VST discretion for Mass Combat
  • Rewrite History (Time ••••) - This spell is reserved for Plot and backstory only
  • Corridors of Time (Time •••••) - This spell is reserved for plot
  • Pariah (Fate •••••) - This spell is not sanctioned within this VSS
  • Swarm of Locusts (Fate •••••) - This spell is reserved for Plot

3.2.9. Firearms

The obtaining of all firearms are subject to Mid Approval. There are 2 main methods of bringing firearms into the city, these are defined as:

  • Legal - the character obtains a firearms license and awaits the legal channels to obtain a firearm. This is either for personal use or business use. This is not able to be circumvented by admission to the police or armed forces. Obtaining a firearm in this manner allows the character pass on police checks when their firearm is able to be discovered. The character is able to purchase ammunition regularly. The character must regularly attend a firearms club or own a farm in order to maintain their license. The character must make 6 monthly check ins with police services to assess their ability to manage and maintain a firearm.
  • Illegal - the character obtains firearms through illegal methods and circumvents the law. This is either for personal use or business use. Obtaining a firearm in this manner allows the character access to high calibre and power weapons, but they are limited in supply and ammunition. If the character is caught by police with their weapon they are subject to the will of the law. Illegal methods are not able to circumvent the time constraints on obtaining firearms within the city.

Firearms restrictions exist in Launceston due to the Port Arthur Massacre back in 1996. The city still grieves, even over 20 years later. As such firearms are highly restricted and citizens hearing the sound of gunfire are incredibly jumpy, and thus quick to call authorities.

3.3. Mana

3.3.1. Gaining Mana

As per Mage: The Awakening Second Edition pg. 87.

Spells that can circumvent how much Mana a Mage can obtain per round will automatically fail in this VSS.

3.3.2. Spending Mana

Mages must spend a point of Mana to perform each of the following:

  • Improvise a spell not from their Ruling Arcana
  • Remove 1 die from their base Paradox pool. A Mage's base Paradox pool can not be reduced below 1 dice. It is not possible in this VSS to take a Paradox roll to a chance die.
  • Activating certain attainments

Mages spend varying points of Mana on the following actions:

  • Legacy Attainments which would otherwise cost multiple Mana only cost 1
  • Powerful spells that go against the Lie require Mana to activate depending on the spell
  • Bolstering their pattern in order to heal physical damage requires a point of Mana per unit of Bashing or Lethal. This cannot remove Aggravated damage.
  • Bolstering their pattern in order to remove mental conditions requires one point of Mana per Condition. This cannot remove mental Tilts but can remove physical ones. This does not allow a player a beat.
  • Activating an Imbued Item requires one Mana, either from the caster or from the item itself.

A Mage cannot spend more Mana than their Gnosis allows per turn, as stated in section 3.2.11.
A character that attempts to spend more Mana than they are able to per round will require extra rounds to perform their action.
Spells that can circumvent how much Mana a Mage can spend per round will automatically fail in this VSS.

3.4. Downtime Handling Procedure

Due: 4th Sunday of Every month
Return: Friday before Game
Actions: 1 x Resolve + 1
Form: Downtime Form

3.4. Crossover limitations

Crossover between genres is considered the same as listed in the Cross Genre Appendix for Chronicles of Darkness (NWoD 2nd Edition) as found at http://wiki.shadowplayinternational.org/index.php/Global_Addenda_and_Settings_Documents Where there is no prelisted crossover limitation by the Appendix, crossover is considered to be Mid Approval.

4. NEW/INTERSTATE PLAYERS

4.1. Information for New Players

New characters should use the standard rules for character creation, extra notes from this VSS, and refer to the Global and Australian Addendas where appropriate. New players are encouraged to email the VST at VST Awakening while considering their concept for assistance in developing their idea.
For the new member guide, please follow this link http://wiki.beyondthesunset.org.au/index.php?title=New_Member_Guide

4.2. Information for Transferring Players

For characters transferring VSS, please forward character sheets, CDD, and any Approvals to the DST and VST for clarification and integration into the local domain and venue. Please also submit the last three months of downtimes and responses from your previous domain where possible to understand more about the character and how they act in their between periods. Also, note that transferring characters may be subject to some alterations to their sheets to account for the change in VSS or to make them more consistent with the new VSS, all alterations will be done after consultations with the player.

4.3. Information for External Players

Proxies are recommended to be sent a week prior to the arrival of the character to give the supervising VST an opportunity to discuss with the visiting player anything they need to know. Visiting characters may be subjected to temporary alterations to their sheets (with consultation) if their sheet is deemed inappropriate to the tone of the local game. Character sheets for a character outside Australia should be sent through the relevant story teller channels at least two weeks before the proxy commences in case any conversion need to be made.