Paths

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Panda
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Paths

Post by Panda » Sun Jun 17, 2018 5:56 am

Josh touched on this briefly in the Earthdawn Companion thread and I wanted to add more, but I don't want to derail that thread into something completely different. So here we are: Paths.

This book has been mentioned and discussed obliquely previously, typically referred to as "Disciplines". That title is shorthand for "the book that addresses the expanded Disciplines from 1E/3E and adapts them to 4E". Which is to say, it does bring most of those Disciplines into 4E, but the end result typically isn't a full Discipline, but instead another implementation of the new framework first used in for questors. I'm being a bit pedantic about that because it's easy to take the development shorthand being used and assume it's a big book of Disciplines. I like to think it's more interesting and useful than that, but I also like to think 8-tracks are going to make a comeback. What I really don't want is to create false expectations.

Most of the content is drawn from Namegivers of Barsaive 3E, though there will be new entries and not everything from Namegivers is going to make the cut. Realistically, I don't see all three windling entries being included when there are opportunities for more varied entries. As Josh indicated, the Horror Stalker design is essentially complete and Tail Dancer in the final stretch. Honestly, I'm pretty excited about Tail Dancer as it provides something of a new direction and style of play for those characters.

The frameworks in relation to this implementation are being called "Paths" right now. It turns out only Josh and myself liked "mystery cults". Something about cults being too loaded of a term. To reiterate some of what he said in the other thread, Paths modify an existing Discipline. I'm not going to discuss the details of how that works right now, but both Horror Stalker and Tail Dancer are Paths rather than Disciplines. From a development perspective, this is a boon for introducing new material. It gives a vehicle for putting groups into the setting without the need for introducing a new Discipline. This means existing characters can benefit from new material without the need for an additional Discipline. Ensuring new material is generally accessible to existing characters is a priority.

This also means we can more freely introduce these kinds of groups which then have a distinctive feel. Josh indicated (and I agree) Lightbearers are candidates for this framework if they comeback. To be clear, Lightbearers are not in this book. But there is a growing list of various groups within the setting who might be good candidates for this kind of treatment. In all, it's a pretty exciting tool for developing new material and gives a new avenue for characters to invest in the setting. Getting the costs right is important. The goal is to have these be interesting choices for the right characters, rather than being something everyone needs to have.

Hopefully this provides some additional information and clears up any possible misunderstandings.

Best regards,

Morgan

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Marzhin
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Re: Paths

Post by Marzhin » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:26 am

I think it's a very interesting approach that should bring a lot of flexibility to the system as we know it. Can't wait to see how it develops :)
Will the book still contain full Disciplines, or only Paths? Or is it too early to tell?
Will some of the Cathayan Disciplines be included as well? I'd say they would work well as Paths (ex: the Samurai as a Path for Swordmaster).
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Mataxes
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Re: Paths

Post by Mataxes » Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:59 pm

Marzhin wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:26 am
Will some of the Cathayan Disciplines be included as well? I'd say they would work well as Paths (ex: the Samurai as a Path for Swordmaster).
I don't think so. I mean, we haven't talked about it.

Honestly until I figure out what to do with/about Cathay, we'll probably leave it alone.
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Marzhin
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Re: Paths

Post by Marzhin » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:34 pm

Mataxes wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:59 pm
Marzhin wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:26 am
Will some of the Cathayan Disciplines be included as well? I'd say they would work well as Paths (ex: the Samurai as a Path for Swordmaster).
I don't think so. I mean, we haven't talked about it.

Honestly until I figure out what to do with/about Cathay, we'll probably leave it alone.
OK, thanks for clarifying :)
Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.
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Panda
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Re: Paths

Post by Panda » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:59 pm

Greetings,

There's going to be at least one Discipline, though less than fifteen.

As indicated previously, Namegivers of Barsaive 3E serves as the basis for existing material; nothing from Cathay is included. There's still a lot of material in Barsaive to cover. Addressing Cathay is rife with problems, not the least of which (but by no means the only) is it isn't covered anywhere in 4E at this time and requires having the books from 3E to provide any kind of context. I may fiddle with redesigning some of the material in my spare time, but that's more a thought experiment and seeing what interesting things can be done, rather than anything in earnest in that direction. Essentially, sometimes I like a challenge and show my work. Unless specifically indicated otherwise, it's always safe to assume Cathay isn't part of any ongoing work.

Some of the material adapted from previous editions may be altered considerably to better fill the role of a Path, meaning it is accessible a variety of Disciplines. For example, Horror Stalkers no longer have an emphasis on Melee Weapons and virtually any Discipline can benefit from the Path if they are the right kind of crazy. No Path is designed for only one Discipline, they're all available to any adept who meets the entry requirements. Some Disciplines are unlikely to meet those requirements, but are also unlikely to find much of interest within (e.g. spellcasters and Tail Dancer). A goal is to ensure Paths are available to a variety of characters.

Hopefully this was helpful and provided a bit more context.

Best regards,

Morgan

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Re: Paths

Post by Lursi » Fri Jun 22, 2018 4:30 pm

Maybe anything cool about Iopos and their adept ways would strike interest. Fleshing out their bronze, silver, gold and orchialkum branches would be cool.

Over all the years, my players were more keen to mess with the big Ds than Therans.

I think it would also be interesting to have a group of Iopian Spies trying to mess up Throal.
Of all things I lost, sanity I held dearest.

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