Pledge-spinning [aka New character shenanigans]

Changeling the Lost Specific Questions

Pledge-spinning [aka New character shenanigans]

Postby Enigmia » Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:46 pm

So Lucas said something about possibly making pledge tokens a thing. It sounds interesting to me, and I'd like to see what he comes up with.
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Postby Fetch » Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:41 am

Advanced Pledge-craft
Basic Pledge-craft is a powerful tool in the hands of Fae and lost alike. Advanced Pledge-craft requires greater skill to wield but gives the pledge-smiths and lore-masters a range of options terrifying to those with little experience in the vagaries of fate. Unlike basic pledges which are promises bound in the Wyrd these are mystic patterns of fate and destiny similar to tokens or the Contracts used by Keeper and changeling alike. Where basic pledges grant bonuses to those who keep their word advanced Pledge-spun are usually transfers, Wyrd aided deals to give traits from one fae being to another.

Like more basic Pledges Pledge-spun are made up of several factors. Each pledge slot used in the construction of the Pledge-spun gives one dot towards it's power with the nature of the slot, Vow, Oath, or Caporal, influencing the resulting Pledge-spun. When preparing this kind of oath a pledge-smith first needs to know about the components they intend to use. Once they know what kind of Pledge-spun they are making they may test to construct it.
Test Pool: Intelligence or Manipulation + Politics - Duration (as per pledge duration factors)
Cost: 1 Glamour per test and 1 Willpower dot + one pledge slot per dot, minimum 1, when completed
Action: Extended, 1 test per time unit, 3 successes per pledge-slot used
If the process in interrupted or if it is not bound upon completion of the Extended Test all successes are lost
Success: The changeling (or the fae being they constructed the Pledge-spun for) binds the intended Pledge-spun with a Willpower dot and and may make use of it until the duration ends the Pledge-spun or they break the Terms of any part, bringing sanctions upon themselves. The Pledge-spun lasts for the intended duration and, if unbroken, the changeling then gets their Willpower dot back at that time. If the changeling breaks one of the Pledge-spun factors they suffer the sanction of all the factors involved. Just like breaking an ordinary pledge their pledge slots remain consumed for the duration of the sanction. Likewise any others who break their end of the Pledge-spun deal suffer the sanctions of the factors betrayed. Only the changeling who binds the Pledge-spun together causes the entire token to unravel with their faithlessness.

Each Pledge-spun factor (with the exception of some Forms) has an Effect, a Term, and a Sanction. The Effect describes the purpose of a given Pledge-spun factor, the Terms describe what is expected of one or more parties and by extension what is considered a break of the factor, and the Sanction describes the curse that befalls anyone who breaks the deal in addition to the penalties normally associated with breaking oaths on whatever pledge slots are used.

Every Pledge-spun must have at least one Form defining the shape and properties of the oath. If multiple Forms are chosen the changeling determines what combination of Forms are needed to make use of each aspect of the Pledge-spun. Any given pledge slot can only be counted once when calculating prerequisites for Forms. For example a changeling swearing upon their true name could use their name for a Pledge Bond or a Soul Spun but not both at the same time.

Pledge Bound (0)
Requirements: Vow or Oath
A Pledge Bound Pledge-spun has a basic Pledge component and may be extended to those who enters this pledge with the pledge-smith. Without other Forms these Pledge-spun do not take physical form. For the duration of the pledge (which must have the same Duration as the Pledge-spun) the changeling may spend a Willpower point to apply the Pledge Bound pledge to another willing party.
Term: The Pledge Spun rests upon a vow and so if the changeling breaks their end of the Pledge Bound pledge they are considered to have broken the Pledge-spun.
Sanction: The Sanction of the bound pledge is sanction enough.

* Freeholds often make use of Pledge Bound pledges to bind their oaths, such that the ruler may induce new members without the presence and consent of every changeling in the area.

Pledge Token (0 or •)
Requirements: Oath or Corporal
The Pledge-spun is sworn upon a Corporal or a symbol of the changeling's Oath and the resulting promise is bound within the item making it a Pledge Token useable by whomever holds the artifact altho crafty pledge-smiths may require specific interaction with the Pledge Token, such as chanting a name three times before use. When multiple Corporal's and/or symbols are used they are all needed to access the pledge-spun, either being crafted into a single item or used together like a Wyrd bound tea set. At one dot multiple caporal's can be used separately, in effect allowing for Pledge Tokens held by different parties.

Swearing Stone (• or ••)
Requirements: Pledge Bound and Pledge Token
A Swearing Stone requires the bound pledge be written or otherwise marked upon the Corporal. Those who hold the Corporal may spend a point of Willpower to join the bound pledge, agreeing to it's terms and conditions. As a two dot Pledge-spun a catch may be included allowing non-fae to join the pledge by preforming some conscious action to show their agreement.

Usage (•)
Requirements: Pledge Token
Those who are a party to the Pledge-spun may use the Pledge Token's mundane properties. For example a Pledge Token that takes the form of a gun may only be useable by those who know how to enter into the Pledge-spun deal before pulling the trigger.

Duration Distortion (•)
Sometimes changelings need a little more control over the timing of their Boons. Normally the Boons of a Pledge-spun last for one action/round or for the entire Duration of the Pledge-spun after they are first invoked. With Duration Distortion the pledge-smith can choose how long the blessings last.

Contract (•)
Requirements: Oath
The most powerful of Pledge-spun take no obvious form and need not ride on a lesser pledge. The pledge-smith can simply extend the benefit of the Pledge-spun to any willing party until such time as the oath ends or the smith chooses to revoke the offer.

Soul-spun (-•)
Requirements: Oath
Oaths tied this closely to the changelings heart gain one extra dot to spend on the Pledge-spun. This dose not increase the number of successes needed to complete the oath but can only be woven into a Pledge-spun oath by the character contributing the Oath slot.

The Boons in a Pledge-spun define it's powers, the blessings it offers the changeling who binds it or others who accept the deal inherent in it. Often Boons will be arranged in a services and payment manor with some benefiting the other party(s) (the service) and others benefiting the pledge-smith (the payment). For example a Pledge Token charm bracelet might protect whoever wears it from sickness by giving them the pledge-smith's Natural Immunity Merit and in exchange the pledge-smith might get one dot of the subjects Strength for the duration.

When the Pledge-spun is created the changeling chooses whether each Blessing is instantaneous applying for only one action/round after being triggered or whether they apply for the entire duration of the Pledge Bound Pledge/as long as the Pledge Token is used. Including the Duration Distortion Form above allows the pledge-smith to modify this. In addition the pledge-smith mush choose how each Boon applies. For example one could Entrust another with "all my mortal status and privileges" or just "the material wealth I've amassed." Narrower definitions make it less likely any party will be surprised by the results of any given Boon.

Advantage (•)
The Advantage aspect offers some form of advantage to some parties of the pledge over others, represented by an appropriate Vulnerability (as per Pledge Sanctions).
Term: Each party who owes an advantage must grant it but may, if they choose, revoke it preventing the bonus.
Sanction: Revoking the Advantage brings down a Lesser Curse upon the character.

Entrust (• - ••• +)
A changeling can Entrust aspects of their person with others via Pledge-spun or can accept such trust in return. Entrust allows the transfer of various traits from one to another. This can allows the transfer of up to a broad category of traits, as wide all Skills in a given category.

One dot allows the transfer of external relations such as Allies or Status, superficial features such as hair or eye color, or minor memories and personality aspects such as short term Passions and emotionally weak memories.

Two dots grant greater depth to the traits that can be lent. Knowledge and surface features, including most Merits (Striking Looks to Fighting Styles) and all Skills/Specialties, can now be transferred as well as deeper aspects of the psyche including long term Passions and important memories. Like memories sold at Goblin Markets losing a memory leaves behind uncertainty that can be harmful to one's functionality (generally a -1 per memory to social interaction with anyone in those memories).

Three dots allow almost anything to be exchanged including Attributes, sex, Irrationalities and Ideals, Kith and Seeming, even cornerstones of one's identity or genetic code. At this level even Identity can be transferred, allowing one to pass on some or all of their Contracts and Pledges to another.

The pledge-smith choses how many dots (up to all) are transferred when designing the Pledge-spun. Dots lent count as real dots for all purposes and cannot normally raise the recipient above the lenders natural dot rating. The trustee dose not need to meet prerequisites for Merits or other traits as the traits are considered to be supported by their originator's attributes.

Adding an additional dot to this factor allows all lent dots to apply, even if this would raise the borrowers trait level above the lenders natural rating. Multiple bonuses to the same trait stack as Pledge factors; Two Entrustments of the same level add to one of one dot higher. In addition multiple extra dots may be added to Entrust to allow the transfer of multiple categories of traits, such as "all my combat prowess and the memories that drive me forward."

If the character has Wyrd of 6+ an additional dot may be added to Entrust to allow the blessing to be granted to multiple parties, such as a Hunterheart giving everyone else in their motley claws. At Wyrd 9+ an extra dot allows the character to retain the trait the lend out for their own use altho they can still only lend it out once.
Term: The party required to Entrust their traits with another is expected to do so but may refuse or may revoke the loan at any time. Note, even if a trait is only borrowed for a round it is still lost from the lender for a minimum of one scene.
Sanction: The character retains the full rating of whatever trait they recall for a full scene. After this the trait loses a dot for the duration of the Sanction. What exactly one "dot" of abstract traits like hair color are is up to ST interpretation. In the case of some transfers this loss could even increase certain aspects, such as a character that lends out their Seeming and finds their Seeming Curse worsened when the Seeming is returned.

Vassalage (•)
Requirements: Courtly Rotation and a freehold crown
Vassalage, the freehold blessing, grants a +1 bonus to a type of test for all freehold members so long as the freeholds courtly rotation is maintained. The type of test that benefits is defined by the nature of the freehold. The Iron Ring, for example, grants it's members a +1 to all tests fighting the True Fae and their direct servants.
Term: If the proper rotation off the freehold is broken the Pledge-spun is as well.
Sanction: The blessing turns to curse giving a -1 to such tests for all freehold members who had access to the Vassalage. Additionally it is rumored that broken Vassalage Pledge-spun attracts the attention of the gentry.

Transfer (•)
Transfer allows the movement of Glamour, Willpower, or Injuries/damage/healing and Sway (only as they occur, not after the fact) from one party to another. The lending of more long term traits, such as youth or scars, is the domain of Entrust.
Term: The beholden character is expected to pay their due and breaks this term if they refuse.
Sanction: Every instance of the Transfer Sanction a character suffers halves the benefit of "free" or diceless recovery of the resource they refused to share (nightly WP regain, normal healing time) and imposes a -1 on active recovery attempts (medical treatment, glamour harvesting).

It's bugged me for quite a while that goblin merchants work via fiat. Market Stall is just a paper-thin patch over the issue by saying a goblin market did it. A generational Pledge-spun could do it but then you could renege on your sales of traits. Alternatively the following merit could be a way to approach it.

Ephemeral Trader (•+)
Prerequisites: Wyrd 4, Occult 3
Normally when transferring traits from one character to another via the Pledge-spun Entrust factor the deal is a loan, undone by the end of the oath. Those who specialize however can learn to buy and sell traits normally beyond the reach of commerce. Each dot of the Ephemeral Trader Merit covers one area of breath as per Entrust, such as Mental Skills or happy memories. In these areas the character may add an additional number of dots to Entrust equal to it's base level to make the transfers permanent. This is incompatible with the multi-lending and lend but keep upgrades.

Goblin Markets often employ a number of pledgesmiths that construct permanent oaths of sale in the form of market stalls to allow the transfer of traits from customer to merchant and visa-versa.

Similar Merits might exist for other factors such as Advantage. A Sword woven of the Sumer Kings Courtly Emblem that grants an eternal Vassalage bonus against the True Fae could be cool as well.

Note: the Ingredients line only includes recommended Ingredients. More pledge slots may be needed to produce the desired result.

So, first up the ever popular Blank Check would be:
Blank Check (•• - ••••)
Ingredients: Resources Caporal
Form: Pledge Token (0), Duration Distortion (•)
Blessing: Entrust (• or ••), +Advantage [social] (•)
The Blank Check takes the form of some Resources Caporal (credit card, blank but signed check) from the pledge-smith may be invoked by others to gain a dot (or more, depending on the version) of the smiths Resources for one transaction. In exchange for the remainder of the Pledge-spun's Duration the lender gains an Advantage at generating Sway with, and thus convincing, the borrower.

Finger Locket (••• or ••••)
Ingredients: Seeming Emblem (traditionally one of the changelings own fingers)
Form: Pledge Token (0) or Pledge Bound (0) on a True Hearts Oath
Blessing: Entrust (•••, +• if Wyrd 9+)
Changelings who avoid violent deaths live extended lifespans. Long life and good health are, however, meaningless without loved ones to share it with. Changelings often offer a Finger Locket to mortal partners to grant that partner half the changelings extended life and infirmity/disease resistance as per Wyrd growth. Changelings at Wyrd 9+ can even offer their chosen companion the full benefit of a powerful lost's long life while living just as long themselves.

Market Stall (••••• •+)
Ingredients: More Caporals than you can shake a stick at, pledgesmith must have Ephemeral Trader
Form: Pledge Token (•)
Blessing: Entrust (•••••+)
Hob markets often have a master pledgesmith who designs the market stalls (or rather the Pledge Tokens in each stall) that allow the merchants to do business. The idea is to produce a large number of Pledge Tokens (one per merchant) that allow for permanent two way transfer of as many traits as possible between customers and market hobs.

Seemings Skin (•••• or •••••)
Ingredients: Seeming Caporal
Form: Pledge Token (0)
Blessing: Entrust (•••, +• to effect changelings), Transfer [glamour] (•)
The Seeming Skin is often formed from an item of clothing tied to a changelings nature, such that others can wear the pledgesmith's Kith or Seeming as a selkie wears it's skin. Weaker Seeming Skins can only grant their blessings to mortals who have no greater template but the more powerful examples of this Pledge Token can offer benefit to changelings as well as mortals. Each time the user wishes to access one of the Blessings of the pledgesmith they must pay a Glamour to the owner for the privilege.

Journeyman's Ensorceling (••••)
Ingredients: Keepers Name Oath
Form: Pledge Bound (0), Soulspun (-•)
Blessing: Entrust (•••), Transfer [willpower] (•), Transfer [glamour] (•)
Used by Loyalists the Journyman's Ensorcelemnt allows the servants of the Others to recruit and empower mortal troops to serve their masters. The Pledge-spun rides upon an oath of Ensorcelment and service for the mortal and adds to that Contracts handed down from the changeling as well as the ability to draw on the Glamour pool of the changeling. In exchange each night that dreams would restore the psyche of the mortal instead the Willpower flows to the pledgesmith master, revitalizing and restoring the lieutenant of the gentry.

Freehold Oath (•)
Ingredients: Vow
Form: Pledge Bound (0)
Blessing: Vassalage (•)
Monarchs of the court in power generally bind the freehold oath to call down the power of the courtly rotation to bless their people and allow for the addition of new members with relative ease.
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Re: Pledge-spinning [aka New character shenanigans]

Postby Enigmia » Thu Oct 11, 2012 7:41 pm

Yay, you did it! *Jumps up and down in excitement*

K, two things.
Is Duration Distortion supposed to have a requirement?
And the "only as they occur" thing in Transfer, not sure how that applies.

Otherwise, awesomeness all around!
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Re: Pledge-spinning [aka New character shenanigans]

Postby Fetch » Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:15 pm

No transferring damage/Injuries after the fact or, worse, giving somebody your last 6 months of healing to insta heal all their damage. At least not with Transfer.

Duration Distortion needs no prereque. It's just a way to get better control over how other elements manifest.
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