Re: What use is a wyter?

From: Peter Larsen <plarsen_at_...>
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 10:15:52 -0500

Benedict Adamson wrote:

> > A couple of points -- the wyter communicates clearly only
>> with the leader of the group it serves.
>> only the the leader (possibly sleeping off a
>> drunk) will know that the Black Oaks are attacking from the west.
>My question, was what use is a wyter GAME MECHANICALLY. In the case
>of a drunk leader, the Narrator has decided that the wyter has no
>game mechanical effect.

        OK, for non-leaders, give a hefty negative modifier to the character's Relationship to Wyter (probably rolled into Relationship to Clan, for clan wyters) to understand what the wyter is "saying." -10 or 15 might do it. "The leaves on the Elms are rustling -- the wyter is disturbed; I'd better be alert" is probably the best you can hope for, too -- this isn't Lassie, after all.

> > It may also be possible for the raiders to augment their
>> magic with time and place modifiers... or get a big bonus
>> against their neighbor's wyters by performing some sort of ritual.
>> If you've been raiding your neighbors for a couple of hundred
>> years, you probably have some idea what there wyter is like and how
>> to avoid or weaken it.
>> Also, cattle raiding is an appropriate Orlanthi action --
>> maybe some or most wyters don't really notice raiding or figure that
>I'll have to reread the ritual rules. I didn't think they provided
>such a benefit. Still, only your clan's neighbours will know those
>kinds of tricks. The wyter is still an 'automatic success' magic
>radar against enemies from further afield or different intentions.

        A Lunar skirmishing unit will have an Esprit de Corps of its own, probably with "Blind Enemy Magical Guardians 1w2. A group of people trying to sneak onto a foreign tula (temple grounds, military camp, whatever) without some sort of anti-magic stealth mojo are going to get what they deserve. Of course, the Hell Sisters detachment that's invading may not care if your wyter noticed them, they are going to kill it first, then you.

        As to the ritual bonus thing, I don't see why not. It's one reason to have a godi for Finovan or other raiding sub-cult in your clan....

> > Assuming it's an augmentation-providing wyter.
>[and provides an]
>> ability that is useful in a typical pc-involved contest. If the
>And if it isn't, then no game mechanical effects, which is my point.

        I'm sure there's a clever player out there that will find a way to use an augmentation from "succulent blackberries" to win a fight....

>> It also seems to me that, if the wyter offers a combat
>> ability... it may be
>> necessary for the wyter to be in or near the combat. Which means
>> there is a chance that the wyter will get
>> killed/captured/neutralized/etc.
>All good dramatic and plot things to do. But irrelevant to game
>mechanics as such.

        I don't think, for this question, you can really separate narrative decisions and game mechanics. In Champions, getting "points back" by purchasing powers through foci and getting "Hunted by" and "Dependent NPC" were game mechanics -- if the GM didn't ever use those flaws in the game, however, the flaws weren't doing their job. Similarly, we know that wyters have a physical body -- if the players want to drag their wyter into combat, they risk losing their wyter.

Peter Larsen


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