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Fallen Mechanics

#1
Pacts and Relations with Other Supernaturals:
  1. Imbued: Imbued are the supernaturals most likely to cross paths with Fallen; Fallen are attracted to their abnormally high Faith, and Hunters know exactly which red flags to look for when a Fallen or any other type of demon sets up shop. While most Hunters would consider Fallen to be kill-on-sight, plenty of others would be willing to take an 'enemy of my enemy' approach with lower-Torment Fallen, and others still might be aware that redemption is always possible for Fallen who are willing to repent. Despite ostensibly already being in a 'Pact' of sorts with angels, not only is it possible for Fallen to form a Pact with the Imbued, Imbued have a default Faith Potential of 5, the highest rating possible. Note, however, that should an Imbued break their code and form an infernalist Pact, they will assuredly be viewed by the rest of their fellow Hunters as a pariah at best and a traitor at worst, regardless of the Torment of the Fallen or the merits of the Pact itself. Further, the Messengers would view such a Pact as the ultimate form of betrayal.
  2. Mages: Infernalism and Mages goes back centuries, even outside of the Nephandi. Many arrogant Mages think that they can get the better end of a deal with demons, and Fallen are no exception.  It is possible to form a Pact with a Mage. This is because the Avatar is a 'divine spark' found inside of every Mage, and it is this 'divine spark' that allows their magic to function. There may indeed be a connection between the Avatar, Quintessence, and Faith; after all, Mages are more or less precisely what Lucifer and the Ten envisioned when they wished to impart secrets of the divine unto humanity during the Age of Babel. Note, however, that Magick feels wrong to Fallen, and isn't quite what the Fallen had intended to teach humanity. Demonic Lores change the laws of reality that the Fallen initially wrote. Magick, on the other hand, outright breaks those laws, and Demons can feel the ambient Faith in an area be burned like fuel whenever Magick is used in their immediate vicinity. Remember that infernalism is a serious crime in both the Traditions and the Technocratic Conventions, punishable by gilgul. Enter into a Pact at your own risk.
  3. Vampires: Despite infernalism having a long, well-documented history among vampires dating back to before the Anarch Revolt, the Cainites, by default, have a Faith Potential of 0, meaning most modern Fallen believe that Pacts are not possible with vampires. However, for every rule, there is an exception; the Earthbound Kupala, for example, has a history with Clan Tzimisce, and there are Elders of the boogeymen of vampires everywhere, the Baali bloodline, who have claimed over the years to have formed Pacts with the Archdukes of Hell, Belial, Asmodeus, Azrael, Dagon, and Abaddon. Whether or not that is true, and if these potent Earthbound would ever be willing to share their secrets even if it is true, is another matter entirely. But then again, if anyone could have figured out a way to form Pacts with vampires despite them not having a Faith Potential, it would be the Archdukes. Keep in mind that infernalism is a crime punishable by Final Death by every major vampire sect, including the Camarilla, the Anarchs, and the Sabbat, and for a particularly underhanded vampire looking to get rid of a rival, making an accusation to the Prince of another vampire being an infernalist for associating with Fallen would be quite an easy way to do it. In every other sense, the Fallen and vampires see each other as competition; both need mortals (Fallen need Faith, vampires need blood), and both use more or less the same methods to gain and acquire power (posing as normal humans, putting Thralls and ghouls respectively in positions of power to use as puppets, etc.). See Page 66 of Demon: the Fallen Storytellers' Companion for more details.
  4. Shapechangers: Fera and Garou tend to be instinctually hostile to Fallen on sight, due to the scent of the Wyrm. The scent of a Fallen's Wyrm taint is proportional to a Fallen's Torment score; a High-Torment Fallen will invariably have a stronger taint than a Low-Torment Fallen. If, however, a Fera somehow manages to form a Pact with a Fallen despite this, the Fera or Garou will likewise become tainted, and will slowly driven insane until the Fera or Garou is hunted down and killed by his or her kin. See Demon: the Fallen Storytellers' Companion Page 69 for more details.
  5. Fae: The Fallen are notoriously banal to the Changelings, and few Fae can stand to be in their presence for long. Fae and Fallen tend to avoid one another; the Fae did not exist before the Fall, and are thus a total mystery to them. Meanwhile, Fae tend to view Fallen the same way every other type of supernatural views 'Demons,' even if they're perceptive enough to know that Fallen are not the same thing as, say, a Bane.
  6. Amenti: The Fallen violate the Balance with their very existence, due to having escaped their punishment in hell, regardless of whether or not their punishment was deserved. The pagan gods that the Amenti serve are likewise not fans of the Fallen, and in many cases, the feeling is mutual. For example, Anubis, God of the Underworld, is viewed by many of House Halaku as a usurper, whereas Anubis views the Fallen the same way he views any other angel: With contempt. The very nature of the Balance prevents mummies from forming a Pact with the Fallen. Any attempt by an Amenti to form a Pact will automatically fail, and that Amenti is going to have some explaining to do the next time she talks to the Judges...
  7. Wraiths: Wraiths are the wheelhouse of House Halaku. The Lore of Spirit is borderline sadistic toward Wraiths, and after the Fall, most of the Halaku have come to see Wraiths as little more than tools, rather than their responsibility to guide into the afterlife. For obvious reasons, Wraiths cannot form Pacts with Fallen. They're not alive, they have no 'divine spark,' and most Fallen can't even perceive them without the aid of the Lore of Spirit. They have a Faith Potential of 0, no exceptions.
What is Demonology?
'Demonology' is an Expert Knowledge introduced in Clanbook: Baali. Unlike Occult, which functions as 'Lore: Demons' as far as the Fallen are concerned, Demonology is explicitly related to the summoning of demons, and is the knowledge of choice for infernalists who wish to engage in diabolism, and thus would be known by characters such as Baali and Nephandi, or particularly dedicated hunters of the infernal. Demonology could possibly be used to summon Fallen from the Abyss, given that the Demonologist also knows that Fallen's True Name, but it could also be used to summon other creatures that many infernalists refer to as 'demons,' such as Banes, Malfeans, or even particularly powerful Spectres. Few true infernalists know - or even care to know - the difference, as their very existence is defined by service to their dark masters. Use this Expert Knowledge at your own risk!

But why are they calling me 'Firstborn?'
This isn't so much a mechanic as it is possibly useful information. Basically, Fallen have been in this game long enough for the inhabitants of Starke to recognize that Fallen, despite being colloquially known as 'demons' (something to which many Fallen themselves would not object), are not a monolith, and are not as universally malevolent as many would believe demons to be. Thus, 'demon' has become something of a pejorative term in Starke, and many non-Fallen tend to refer to Fallen instead as 'Firstborn' (as in, the 'first born' species, the first creations of God) as a sort of politically correct term. The Fallen themselves don't seem to care what they are called, and are content to let the other inhaitants of Starke refer to them as such if it makes them feel better.

Torment:
  1. You will not receive a point of Temporary Torment for accidentally using the High-Torment form of an Evocation unless the results of the roll would violate the character's standing on the Hierarchy of Sins. You will, however, receive one if you use the High-Torment form of an Evocation on purpose. Torment will otherwise be accrued normally as per the Hierarchy of Sins.
  2. You can shed one Temporary Torment per month, so long as you did not accrue any Temporary Torment for that month. For example, if you gain one point of Temporary Torment in January, but gain no points in February, you will lose one point at the beginning of March. If you gain no more points in March, you'll lose another at the beginning of April. This is meant to be a quality of life rule for Demon players, but because Torment is fundamentally different than, say, Paradox for Mages, we cannot be as generous as their system is. Torment is very easy to gain and very hard to lose for a reason. Note that you cannot lose Permanent Torment in this fashion; if you have 0 Temporary Torment at the end of a month in which you did not gain any Torment, you don't suddenly drop down to a lower point of Permanent Torment.
  3. Players will be allowed to make one journal entry per week describing their character performing a 'good deed.' During this entry, the player may make a conscience roll, difficulty their Permanent Torment Score +1. This reflects how characters become increasingly indifferent to acts of kindness and lose their sense of compassion with each point of Torment. You may not use Willpower for an automatic success on this roll. If successful, the player loses one point of Temporary Torment upon ST confirmation. Permanent Torment may not be lowered this way, and must be lowered by spending XP. This roll cannot botch, but if it fails, obviously, your Temporary Torment stays the same, and you may not make another attempt until the following week. NOTE: In order for a good deed to be considered a good deed, the deed must be truly selfless in nature. That means your character gains nothing from it, so no, forming a Pact and curing a terminal cancer patient does not count. Using Lore of Awakening to cure a total stranger, however, would. When you complete a journal entry with a good deed that you believe could lower your Temporary Torment, just poke me on Discord to approve it. Note that you can make these entries in the same month that you gained a point of Temporary Torment, but not in the same week. This method is the only way that you can lose more than one point of Temporary Torment in the same month.
  4. You cannot reach Torment 0 by spending XP. The lowest level you can reach by spending XP is Torment 1. If, however, someone ever does reach Torment 1 and wishes to try to reach Torment 0 and thereby seek forgiveness from the Heavenly Host, it might be possible some other way...
  5. If a character somehow reaches Torment 10 (and hasn't been killed by the other player characters for being an utter monster in the process), that player has two choices: Temporarily retire their character and maybe have that character escape hell again in the future, or attempt to become Earthbound. If the character successfully becomes Earthbound, well... let's just cross that bridge if we come to it.
  6. We are using the rules in the Player's Hand Book Errata for Torment in Evocations:
    Quote:When making an evocation roll, compare your successes to your Torment- if more of the successes rolled show numbers equal to or less than the character's Torment, the high-Torment effect occurs.

    Example: Magdiel wishes to use Decay on the body of a cancer patient. Magdiel's Stamina is 2 and her Medicine is 3, for a total of five dice, and her current Torment is 7. The difficulty for the roll is a standard 6. Adam gets three successes: 7, 9, and 9. He has more successes that are greater than his Torment, so the evocation works as planned. If he'd rolled 6, 6, and 8, however, the high-Torment effect would have occurred, decaying everything around the character.

    Botches cancel successes starting with the highest successes rolled. (pages 161 and 169)
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#2
Re: Devil's Due
  • Keep in mind that Arcana and Resolve are literally just old-fashioned words for Lores and Faith respectively. If you want to take a Merit, Flaw, etc. from this book, just switch the terms accordingly. Any time anything written about Arcana would conflict with what is written about Lores in the modern-era books, the modern era book wins. Please, for the sake of my sanity, let's just keep this simple.
  • I will allow you to take the Cults background. Just bear in mind, other in-game characters may not look favorably upon this depending on the circumstances, so do so at your own risk.
  • Vices are irrelevant to current in-game mechanics. Feel free to use them for roleplay flavor only, such as when creating Pacts, but they are otherwise unnecessary for sheets.
  • Thralls can gain Torment. In fact, any Thrall gains one dot of Torment upon accepting a Pact. Just like in the book, Torment will act as a hard cap for 'karma,' and if their Torment level rises about their Faith Potential, they will start changing, just like if a Demon has a Torment rating higher than 5. Torment is a foreign disease that was never meant to be inflicted upon humans, and this is the price your Thrall pays for forming a Pact.
  • Merits and flaws from this book may be allowed on a case by case basis. Talk to me beforehand.
  • The Penitent Merit: You must be at a maximum of Torment 2 to take this merit, which means you cannot take this merit at Character Creation. Further, in order to take this merit, you must relinquish all Pacts, Thralls, and Cults, and it must make sense for your character based on their Nature and their backstory. A true believer in Lucifer's cause, for example, would not want to make peace with God, regardless of their Torment. Beyond that, I will not say more. We'll just cross this bridge if we come to it.
  • Taints: Another word for Stigmata, much like how Arcana and Resolve refer to Lores and Faith respectively. If your (mundane) thrall ever gains more Torment than their Faith Potential rating, they begin to suffer from Stigmata.
  • No, Fallen characters do not have to keep their Torment below their Faith rating or risk death. That would make certain Houses unplayable, as some start with a Permanent Torment rating of 4, and all Fallen start with a Faith rating of 3.
  • The Ritual of the Sundered Soul: It exists, but has been lost to history over the centuries. Some book out there, somewhere, may contain information on how it is performed, but you don't have it, and the only demons who have been on Earth long enough to still remember what this ritual is or what it does are also the demons who couldn't care less about performing the ritual themselves.
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#3
Evocations, Rituals, and You:
  • You do not need to roll to learn House Lores and Common Lores. Just gain the necessary XP, have your justification, (journaling, use of the relevant, lesser dots of the lore in scenes, etc.), and you're good to go. Your character already knows their House Lores and the Common Lores. They just need to remember how to use them.
  • You do not need to roll to learn Lores from other houses if and only if you have a teacher. If your teacher is another player character, a scene where you are practicing and studying the lore with the other character is required. If your teacher is a Mentor, you obviously require the Mentor background, and either journaling is required, or an ST-run scene.
  • You DO need to roll to learn Lores from books. Reading a book is just not the same as having a live teacher and learning through guided training, and this reflects that. Note that any books on Demonic lores are almost certainly going to be extremely old, and written in an ancient language. If you manage to find one of these books, most likely as a scene reward, you will need to find a way to translate the book first. You will then need to roll Intelligence + Occult, difficulty of 6. Botching this roll means you must start over from the beginning. You will need one success for every point of XP spent, and each roll represents ten hours of uninterrupted study. Meaning, unless your character is pulling an all-nighter (and foregoing a point of Willpower regeneration due to not getting a full night's sleep), you may only roll once per day. If the book was written by mortal sorcerers, then they necessarily had to learn this lore from Tormented demons. In order not to have... unpleasant side-effects caused by the Torment of these demons, the difficulty increases to 7, and you will also have to roll Conviction (difficulty 6) so as not to gain a point of Temporary Torment.

And this brings us to Rituals. Rituals are far more complex, difficult, and dangerous than Evocations, and as such, we're going strictly by the book. Please refer to Demon: The Fallen: Player's Guide, page 177 for more information. Be prepared for a long, grueling period of study and practice, complete with dice-rolling, scenes, and/or journaling in order to learn Rituals, but of course, those who can pull it off will reap the rewards.
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#4
Pacts with Vampires

IMPORTANT:
As has been pointed out multiple times, information on Pacts with Vampires is extremely contradictory within Demon: the Fallen, despite the fact that Infernalism is well-established among Cainites and has been dating back all the way to Enoch. Demon: the Fallen: Storyteller's Guide states that Vampires have a Faith Potential of 0 by default, while Dark Ages: Devil's Due and Vampire 20: The Black Hand: Guide to the Tal'Mahe'Ra and Vampire 20: Rites of the Blood all but confirms that Vampires can and have made Pacts with the Earthbound, if not Fallen in general. So how do we address this for this game?

After much deliberation and working with the Vampire ST, we've come up with the following mechanics for forming Pacts with Vampires. Note that these mechanics do not apply to any other splat in the game; All other splats, with the exception of Wraith, are 'alive' in some sense, and thus do have a Faith Potential. Pacts with Wraiths are not possible, no exceptions.

House Menchanics for Forming the Pact:
  • The Fallen must know how to form a Pact with Vampires, despite Vampires having 0 Faith Potential. Attempting to form a Pact the 'old-fashioned way' will automatically fail, and will likely leave the Fallen and the Vampire convinced that they're wasting their time. This means that the Fallen must have gained this information from another source, such as an ancient tome (scene reward only!), or another demon of sufficient age or knowledge, who would almost certainly be an Earthbound (in which case... good luck).
  • The Fallen may attempt to figure this out on their own, but they must first possess the following Knowledges: Lore: Undead 3 or higher, and either Occult 3 or Demonology 2. Having these Knowledges does not automatically grant the Fallen the ability to grant the Pact, but it will give them enough to go on to try the following mechanics at +2 difficulty. If the roll is succeeded, the Fallen has 'figured it out' for themselves; any additional Pacts with Vampires in the future may be rolled without the difficulty penalty.
  • To form the Pact, the Fallen must spend at least 1, but no more than 5 points of Faith, and then roll that many dice (standard difficulty, unless the above conditions apply). For each success, the Vampire spends one Blood Point. The Faith 'bonds' itself to the vitae spent, resonating with the divine properties within the Curse of Caine, and infusing Torment into it. Each 'success' on the Faith roll becomes a point of Faith Potential for that Vampire. If this roll fails, the Faith and Blood points are lost and the Fallen and Vampire must try again another day. Botching this roll means that not only does the Pact fail, but it causes the Vampire to have a bad reaction to the Torment; they have visions of going to hell, and must make a Rötschreck check.
  • Once the Pact is made, the Vampire automatically loses one point of Humanity or Path (unless, for some reason, they're already on the Path of Evil Revelations), and must make a Conscience/Conviction roll to determine if they lose an additional point. Note that Vampires cannot provide Offered Faith to Fallen, meaning the Fallen must invest all of the Vampire's artificial Faith Potential back into the Vampire. If a Vampire wishes to try to boost their Faith Potential in the future, it requires an additional Pact... and with it, an additional loss of Humanity/Path, and an additional gain of Permanent Torment. Note that Faith Potential can never exceed 5.


House Rules:
  • Upon forming a Pact, Vampires gain one point of Permanent Torment. This Torment, like in Devil's Due, does indeed act as a 'hard cap' to their Humanity/Path rating, and each subsequent failed Degeneration Roll made after this accumulates one additional point of Permanent Torment (yes, I said Permanent Torment, not Temporary Torment) in addition to a loss of Humanity/Path. Should their Torment rating ever exceed their Humanity/Path Rating (e.g. Humanity 4, Permanent Torment 5), they will gain the Dark Aura flaw (p.16, V20: Lore of the Bloodlines). This Flaw may not be removed by spending XP so long as the Pact remains in place. There is only one exception to this: A Vampire on the Path of Evil Revelations ignores their Torment rating when it comes to their Path/Humanity rating, but not when it comes to the Flaw. Permanent Torment may be reduced by spending XP, but this will not remove the Flaw if it is acquired.
  • Vampires do not have a Faith Potential, or at least not a 'natural' Faith Potential. This means that Fallen do not gain Offered Faith from a Pact with a Vampire, and Vampires do not regenerate Faith when they use a Lore or manifest an Apocalyptic trait. However, that does not mean that forming a pact with a Vampire is pointless; all Vampires have a Permanent Faith equal to their Faith Potential (at a maximum of 5, obviously). Fallen may 'donate' their Temporary Faith to a Vampire to use as they see fit, and Vampires will store this just like Blood Points, to use in any way a Fallen may use it (for Lores, manifesting an Apocalyptic Trait, buffing their own stats, healing Bashing or Lethal Damage, etc.). Note that Temporary Faith does not 'disappear' like Blood Points, and can be safely stored indefinitely until used. Temporary Faith may not be used as a substitute for Blood Points when using Disciplines, with the exception of Dark Thaumaturgy (see below).
Possible Benefits to Vampires:
  • Any 'standard' Gift from Faith investment. Want total immunity from Dominate, Presence, and Dementation? Take Mind Control Immunity. Want wings? Take the Apocalyptic Trait. Want better stats with no extra work? Take 10 Freebie Points. Note that you can't spend Freebie Points on Generation. That's another Gift; see below. Note that these Freebies cannot be spent on Disciplines, with the exception of Dark Thaumaturgy (see below).
  • Dark Thaumaturgy. Yes, I'm caving on this, but not without a major caveat: Either the Fallen or the Vampire must have some form of justification to learn a Dark Thaumaturgy path. Examples can include infernalist tomes, or similar scene rewards. Dark Thaumaturgy originated with demons that existed before the Sixth Great Maelstrom, such as Earthbound, Banes, etc., and most modern Fallen (and indeed, most Vampires) haven't even heard of Dark Thaumaturgy. Vampires gain the first dot of the Path for free, but all subsequent dots cost XP as normal, and count as a Clan Discipline for XP cost. All Dark Thaumaturgy paths work as written in the books, including the price that must be paid for using them (i.e. Nightmares for Path of Phobos, etc.). Temporary Faith donated by a Vampire may be used as a substitute for Blood Points when using Dark Thaumaturgy, but not for any other Discipline.
  • 'Chain the Beast.' Adopting this from Devil's Due as it sounds cool. If you take this Gift, you gain immunity to all Rötschreck and Frenzy checks. However, this comes with a terrible price... your Fallen patron can make you go into Frenzy or Rötschreck whenever he or she wants, without even needing to roll for it, and you cannot roll to resist, as you have surrendered all control over the Beast by forming the Pact. It lasts for as long as the Fallen wants, and it can end as suddenly as it can begin.
  • Lowered Generation. This is one of the only ways you can lower your Generation without diablerie. Each point of Faith reinvested back into a Vampire is another generation lowered.

Pacts with Mages

House Rules
  • Mages gain 1 point of Permanent Torment. Mages also gain one point each of Conviction, Courage, and Conscience, as well as up to seven additional dots to be spread out amongst these three Virtues, in accordance with that Mage's personality. This is for making Degeneration rolls whenever a Mage does anything that could result in them gaining Temporary Torment. Note that going against your Paradigm will result in a degeneration roll, using Conviction. Mages may purchase additional dots with XP, just like Demons. See here for costs.
  • A Mage's Faith Potential is equivalent to their Avatar rating, at a maximum of five. Fallen gain/invest Faith accordingly.
  • A Mage's Permanent Faith is equivalent to their Arete rating. Unlike other types of Thralls, Mages regain Temporary Faith every morning, equal to the number of successes made on an Arete roll (difficulty 7). WARNING: This roll can botch, with disastrous results!
  • Temporary Faith cannot be used as a substitute for Quintessence, but can be used to buff your Attributes, similar to Demons with Faith or Vampires with Blood Points. It can also be used to heal your own health levels, for Bashing or Lethal damage (not Aggravated).
  • If a Mage's Permanent Torment rating ever exceeds their Avatar rating, that Avatar becomes Inverted. While some might argue that this is better than outright losing their Avatar, as can happen if they become a ghoul, don't let the local Chantry find out...
  • Forming a Pact will have you take the Bound flaw. The only one who can 'cancel' a Pact is the Fallen him or herself. The Mage is stuck with it indefinitely.
Possible Benefits for Mages:
  • Any Gift that could be given to normal thralls. Want to thwart any attempt at using the Mind Sphere on you? Take Mind Control immunity. Want to be more beautiful, stronger, etc., or want an easy way to increase Spheres? Take 10 freebie points. NOTE: These freebie points cannot be spent on Arete or Avatar.
  • One dot of Arete. However, just as any Mage would tell you, there is no such thing as an easy route to power, and this Gift comes with a terrible price: Should you ever botch an Arete roll fueled by this Infernal power, you will gain one additional point of Temporary Torment for every point of Paradox you would have gained. Note that Temporary Torment does not disappear with Paradox. See above for how to get rid of Temporary Torment.
  • Backgrounds. While normally backgrounds cannot be purchased with Freebie points granted by Pacts, certain backgrounds for Mages can be. Note, however, that because they are being granted via infernalism, they will not function exactly the same way as normal. For example, if you take the Arcane background, it will never work on the demon with whom you hold the Pact, and the demon herself will be able to choose whom it does or does not work on (assume that, by default, it is always 'on;' the demon can retroactively restore memories removed by Arcane, however). If you take the Sanctum background, it will grant you a time and resource discount, but you still have to construct it yourself; the demon cannot do this for you, and the demon will be able to access the Sanctum whenever they wish (all Wards you construct in and around the sanctum cannot stop the demon from entering, and they do not need to roll to pierce it). Mind Realms purchased with these freebies are corrupted with Torment; while they will still help with Quiet, depending on your Permenent Torment, you might actually prefer the Quiet. Because the demon is the one granting you the power, they are the ones who ultimately control it. Backgrounds taken with the Pact must first be discussed with both myself and the Mage ST to discuss how they will work. You may not purchase any background that depends upon external sources, such as Contacts, Allies, Mentor, Resources, Nodes, etc. You may only purchase Backgrounds that relate to your characters' own abilities.
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#5
Pacts with Imbued

House Rules
  • Entering into a Pact with a Fallen results in the Imbued gaining one point of Permanent Torment. This marks an Imbued as a demon's Thrall to any Imbued using their Sight. This cannot be hidden by any means, mundane or supernatural.
  • Hunters cannot lose Derangements gained naturally from being an advanced Hunters via a Pact.
  • All Hunters have a Faith Potential of 5 by default.
  • If an Imbued's Permanent Torment rating ever exceeds their Conviction, they gain one Permanent Derangement as the Torment begins to eat away at their already fragile sanity. They will gain an additional Permanent Derangement for each consecutive point of Permanent Torment gained thereafter.
Possible benefits to the Imbued:
  • Any Gift given to normal Thralls. Note that they receive at least two by default, due to their high Faith Potential. That's 20+ Freebie Points, two+ Lores, two+ Apocalyptic Traits or Innate Infernal Powers, or any other combination you can think of!

Pacts with Shapechangers
House Rules:
  • All Garou or Fera who enter into a Pact with Fallen gain one point of Permanent Torment. Torment is indistinguishable from Wyrm Taint to other Garou or Fera. If you enter into a Pact, be prepared to abandon your Pack, or be prepared to suffer the consequences.
  • A Garou or Fera's Faith Potential matches their Gnosis rating, capped at 5.
  • A Garou or Fera gain a Permanent Faith Rating of 3. Garou or Fera do not regenerate Faith like Mages, and instead must have Temporary Faith 'donated' to them like Vampires. Garou or Fera can spend this Faith as a substitute for Rage or Gnosis.
  • Garou or Fera inevitably go insane from Torment, much like Wyrm Taint. All Garou gain one point of Conviction, Courage, and Conscience, along with 7 additional dots to spend among these as they see fit, as approriate for their character's personality. This will be for Degeneration rolls, and Garou or Fera can purchase additional dots with XP, just like Mage Thralls. Garou and Fera gain one Derangement for every point of Permanent Torment they gain above Permanent Torment 1. These Derangements persist until the point of Permanent Torment is bought off with XP.
Possible Benefits to Garou or Fera:
  • Any Gift that can be given to any normal Thrall. Note that Apocalyptic Traits can be manifested while in Crinos form... Wink
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#6
Pacts with Changelings

House Rules
  • Of the Fae, Pacts are only possible with Changelings; other types of Fae are not 'human' enough to have a Faith Potential.
  • All Changelings have a Faith Potential and Permanent Faith rating equal to their Permanent Glamour Rating minus their Permanent Banality Rating. Much like Garou and Vampires, Changelings must have Temporary Faith 'donated' to them by their Fallen patron. This Faith may be spent as a substitute for Glamour.
  • All Changelings gain one point of Permanent Torment upon forming a Pact. Each point of Permanent Torment is treated as an additional point of Banality in all Banality-related rolls. It does not count as Banality when it comes to Faith Potential.
  • Due to Banality, Changelings are the most difficult type of Supernatural to form a Pact. When attempting to form a Pact with a Fallen, the Changeling must make a Banality check at a difficulty of the Fallen's Banality Rating +1. If this roll fails, the Pact is not formed and the Changeling must flee from the Fallen. If this roll botches, the Changeling gains two points of temporary Banality, and may not attempt to form another Pact with that Fallen.
Possible Benefits for Changelings:
  • Any Gift that can be given to a normal Thrall. Note that Apocalyptic Traits can be manifested while in Fae Mein.
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#7
Pacts with Mummies
NOTE: It is not possible to form Pacts with any of the playable Mummy characters (Amenti, Teo'malki, Wu Tian, Caibri) for the reasons listed above in the first post. This is for Amkhat, as well as Shusaskhsen and Shemsu, or any other type of Mummy that uses Corruption instead of Balance, all of which are valid candidates for Pacts.

House Rules:
  • All Mummies immediately gain one dot of Permanent Torment. This Torment acts as a second Corruption rating, meaning that the Corruption and Permanent Torment ratings stack for all Corruption-related mechanics (except for Corrupt Faith; see below). This more or less means that, just like with Garou and Fera, any Mummy or Amkhat that forms a Pact with a Fallen will inevitably become an inhuman, psychotic monster. Form this Pact at your own risk!
  • Any lingering connection the Mummy or Amkhat had to Apophis or Set is immediately severed. You cannot serve two masters! Amkhat will not notice that the connection is severed, but if they ever do find out, watch out. This also means that they do not regain Sekhem from dusk falling, but they can still regain Sekhem from nodes.
  • A Mummy or Amkhat's Faith Potential is equal to half of their Corruption rating. A Mummy with Balance cannot form a Pact for reasons listed above.
  • All Mummies and Amkhat have a Permanent Faith rating equal to half of their Corruption rating. Mummies, much like Shapechangers, Changelings, and Vampires, cannot regenerate Temporary Faith on their own. It instead must be donated by their Fallen patron. Mummies may use Temporary Faith as a substitute for Sekhem to fuel their Hekau. Temporary Faith may not be stored inside vessels.
  • A Mummy's Ka becomes increasingly hostile with each point of Permanent Torment gained. The Ka of a Mummy in a death cycle takes on the Torment from the rest of the Mummy's soul, and will flail in Tormented rage for the duration of the cycle, lashing out at everyone and everything around it.
Possible Benefits to Mummies:
  • Any Gift that can be given to a 'normal' Thrall. Yes, this includes any defensive Apocalyptic Trait. Your soak dice shall block out the sun. (Let them Thunder Kick in the shade.)
  • Corrupt Faith: This Gift is automatically granted to all Mummies and Amkhat, and is 'invested' for free without spending a point of Faith Potential. Roll Corruption, difficulty 7. Each success allows the Mummy or Amkhat to convert one point of Temporary Faith into one point of Sekhem, by 'corrupting' the Faith stored within them. If this roll botches, the Faith is lost without being converted. You may only attempt to corrupt Faith once per day. Permanent Torment does not count as Corruption for the sake of this roll.
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#8
Supernatural Thralls and You

After reading the above, you're probably all thinking, "Gee, can't wait until I can enthrall me a Mage and Baali and a Shusakhsen and a Black Spiral Dancer and and and and--..." Well, not so fast.

Let's face it. Supernatural Thralls are the Holy Grail for a Demon, and just about everyone knows it, just like how having another supernatural as a ghoul is for a vampire. You're giving them extra power, and now you own them; you have the leverage of taking that gift away with a snap of your fingers, and they will do anything to keep it. Except... that's not really how it works.

A Pact is not a blood bond. The threat of losing what you have given them is leverage, but leverage earns compliance, not loyalty. So to be clear, I am not talking about the Pacts background; once the Pact is forged, you're getting your Faith whether your thrall likes it or not, and they can't back out of that agreement. I am, in fact, talking about the Followers/Thralls background.

Pacts are often made in desperation or greed. They might be made in the heat of the moment, a moment of weakness, or because the potential thrall has crossed the despair event horizon and no longer sees any other way out of their current predicament than selling their soul. But eventually, unless that thrall is simply an infernalist by nature (in which case, you should really think twice before agreeing to that Pact), it is going to sink in for them that they've just committed the cardinal sin in the World of Darkness, and pretty much every major faction from every other splat in the universe considers it a crime punishable by death, or worse. They've traded their future for the present. Depending on their own beliefs, they probably also believe they're now all but guaranteed a one-way ticket to hell, and no amount of "No you didn't" from a demon of all things will convince them otherwise.

So, how do you turn someone having an existential crisis into a loyal follower? I'll tell you. And no, it's not as simple as speding points.

  1. You must earn the Supernatural Thrall/Follower as a SCENE REWARD. You cannot earn one via journaling, and you may not have one from character creation. This is non-negotiable and no exceptions will be made, period.
  2. You must first purchase the Pacts background. Your Supernatural Thrall/Follower cannot be considered a thrall without having a Pact with you, by definition. XP reductions will be offered at ST discretion, and only by the ST who was running the scene from which you earned the reward. The ST running that scene has final discretion on whether or not the prospective thrall accepts the Pact. Remember, Pacts, by definition, are voluntary.
  3. Once you have the Pacts background, you must purchase the Followers/Thralls background. Note that you can make both purchases at the same time; so long as the completion date of Followers/Thralls background dot comes either after or on the completion date of the Pacts background, it's fair game.
  4. On or around the completion date of the Followers/Thralls Background dot, you will have to participate in a one-on-one scene with an ST, most likely either me or the ST of the scene from which you earned your scene reward. Think Seeking scenes from Mage, or Balance scenes from Mummy. The goal of the scene will be to earn the loyalty of that thrall once and for all. You will be interacting with that thrall, and you will have to find a way to convince them that they either made the right choice, it's not as bad as they think it is, they're on the fast track for power, whatever it takes. Each thrall is different, and they all made the Pact for their own reasons, and some scenes will be much harder to complete than others. A Baali on the Path of Evil Revelations will be a lot easier to convince to serve a demon than a Technocrat or an Imbued, for example. Once you complete that scene, congratulations! You've just earned a very powerful ally. The ST who ran this scene for you will make the character sheet, if one doesn't exist already. If you didn't succeed, you will, unfortunately, need to try again. The good news is that you still keep the Pact; only the demon can cancel it. The bad news is you'll need to buy the dot all over again, just like a failed Seeking or Balance scene.
Note that the above does not apply to Pacts made with a Player Character. You've already had your 'scene' with them, and you don't need to buy the Followers/Thralls background any more than you would if that character acts as a Contact or Ally for you (you will, however, have to buy Pacts to earn your daily Faith from them). Of course, that Player Character also likely just put themselves in danger by becoming an infernalist, but, well, that's their problem, not yours... hopefully. Player Characters who enter into a Pact with the Fallen are given one dot of Permanent Torment, one dot each of Conscience, Conviction, and Courage, and seven more dots to spread amongst them. They also automatically gain the 'Bound' flaw (no freebie points are gained), and this flaw may not be bought off with XP; it only disappears when the Pact is severed.
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