I've been wrestling with the Devotee vs Initiate thing for a while, too, trying to figure out how some characters I want to create would work. And in the end, I think I've fallen back on this idea of "power vs flexibility" that seems to pervade things.
Like Steve, I think Devotees ARE more powerful than initiates in some key matters, especially the ability to raise all their feats at once, their prime role in heroquesting, greater access to the cult secret, etc. But they do sacrifice some flexibility here.
I don't really know how to handle the idea you can buy stand-alone feats from other cults but not one you are initiated to. I like Jane's logic on this, but it still seems odd. I'm tempted to let people buy stand-alone feats from their own cult, but with the limitation of it starting at 13 and not increasing with the affinity, even if that goes against the rules.
As far as adding to the rote feats included, it's quite clear Devotees can but Initiates cannot do that. But what about learning a new feat in the same affinity from some other cult? In other words, could an Initiate of Issaries learn a feat from the Trade affinity of Etyries and just subsume it into his Trade affinity?
On 10 Aug 2004 at 9:07, steve_at_... wrote:
> 08/10/04 7:44:17 a.m., "Jane Williams" <janewilliams20
> _at_...> wrote:
> > I can see both these points, but I still agree that the
> > number of major NPCs whose primary activities seem to fit
> > their cults, but are not devotees, is surprising. I'd
> > hesitate to call them "just" initiates when you look at the
> > ability numbers next to their affinities. That -5
> > becomes almost irrelevant in the face of multiple masteries.
> My gaming group has decided that although devotees are more
> powerful in their specialty, concentrated initiates have a lot
> more flexibility, and may in fact be more powerful considered
> that way.
> Devotees get to improvise new and unusual feats, and initiates
> only get to improvise standard feats. Devotees also get to
> raise x feats for the price of 3 by raising an affinity, if
> they know more than three feats in an affinity, then that's a
> better deal than initiates get.
> Another bonus is that when you are heroquesting, getting to the
> other side is easier when you have devotees standing in for
> various roles.
> For those bonuses Devotees give up a reasonable amount of
> magic, and that means that becoming a devotee is by no means an
> obvious choice for the power gamers out there.
> Stephen Rennell steve_at_...
> Wellington, New Zealand
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