Choice of the Vampire - community input [SEE POST 1310]

It could be tied to the character’s level of independence. Because the whole deciding to speak or not to the Governor is sort of a cross roads to kick over the old apple cart. Of course it could be rebuffed as out of order, or like the forthrightness of a character saying that he’d be good for the Senate, found greatly amusing by Overstreet. And part of the process of gaining renown in the society is gained by a vampire who is willing to stick his head above the ramparts and take a risk.

Like making jokes about the Dominus is inappropriate and yet it can be still done when Draper and the artist come to town.

Reading the text properly, you’re right. It’s easy to go a little goggle-eyed sometimes!

Small thing but is Bailey’s maker important at all? I only ask because as far as I can tell there aren’t even any intimations about him. At least in Aichinger’s case we can imagine he’s somewhere in Europe doing his thing and I know in Carothers’ and Harding’s case there a big reason to keep their Dominus quiet. But with Bailey it seems like an interesting gap, considering he’s of American stock and all. And he can become an important ally in St Louis, so it’s interesting the topic doesn’t get breached socially either.

Of the top of my head I think there’s a couple of rampage points in New Orleans around Clotho. Taking revenge on the Vicksburg companion’s death perhaps, but that could be a little more calculated. I think you mentioned the possibility of implementing one in Memphis if one tried to break up the seance and people didn’t take one seriously. At least in that case there’s a bigger gathering of people, important people too.

I suppose what I mean is that there’s the charm to persuade Slattery to go away, but if the character lacks that but looked tough, perhaps from features acquired in a character mortal lifetime if not from things acquired subsequently. (There was a line at the start of St Louis about a waitress bouncing off a character’s ‘solid frame’ if he had 4 strength, so I’d assumed from that that improving the character’s strength has some visual effects. I think I read something you wrote once about 3 strength being comparable to a sportsman.) My point being that if the character looked tough and was edging for a fight, there might be a threshold where the policeman might decide to retreat and get more support or try a different approach. After that, that’s where the other stuff below comes in, where one has to think about trying to deal with the problems in the long term.

I don’t mean that one could namedrop Bailey and Herr A to Slattery as such. But just after, there could be an option to go to one of them and say “I have this problem, could you use one of your connections to get Slattery off my back?” Of course there could be requirements for this, a debt needs to be promised and all that, but it could be another option.

Got you.

I understand your thinking a lot more now. But I suppose that’s the question: Does the character want someone tracking their every movements and on their tail all the time who’s also in a position of authority? That has complications too, particularly with the Rule of Reserve. At least this would allow us the option to get Slattery off our back, if we don’t want to kill him or don’t have the money to pay him off on a long term basis.

Thinking about it, does the Mayor attend the wealthy gathering one can organise to express annoyance at the city’s trade unions? This is around the time the bridge is being built. Perhaps a character who had his own contacts at the top of the St Louis society, or even know a mason or two, if acquainted with the order and made introductions with some of them at the party at the start of St Louis, could reach out to one individual or another and ask for their help? Vampires are still flesh and blood of course, but at least in the aftermath of the Slattery confrontation there should be a few ways to prevent an up-jumped hobbledehoy from fleeing one on a long-term basis. Aside from murder!

I could see the not being alive part working. It would add another element to Bailey’s letter of sympathy over the life after death question in the letting writing stage. Also possible that just because a vampire has a Quaestor for a father and a successful Senator for a sun, that he’s still just ‘middle management’. Does his own thing, without being outside the society, but isn’t particularly interested in getting involved with vampire politics or holding office.

And my final thing I promise! We hear a bit about Senate debates in Memphis. Meeting and agreeing the dates of caucuses, in a formal setting somewhere. There aren’t any vampire newspapers of course, but perhaps there could be a couple of references to the Senate meeting about different things. Perhaps to try and agree a formal stance on the Dracula book or the occasional reference to Lockridge/Bailey bickering about the Revolution or Cuba. Just bits of cosmetic gossip if nothing else, that a high ranking/lore versed vampire might hear.

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Can you remind me?

No. Because a 4 is supernatural, it has no visible effect.

I suppose, but Slattery doesn’t know who Bailey or Aichinger are. And you don’t know what strings they would pull, so you can’t name-drop anyone.

No, anyone living in Beale, any black character, and any character with a compassion > 70…as long as they didn’t get caught by the previous check that routes them to the KKK scene.

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I actually haven’t figured anything out about Bailey’s dominus. I know who his grand-dominus is, though: the Quaestor of Boston. Bailey was turned in the US, so his dominus is definitely not in Europe, but they also might not be alive. Or they could be in the Court of Boston, Philadelphia, or New York.

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Yes, but those don’t happen in the view of lots of witnesses. You can go around and kill people, but you do it with a certain amount of circumspection, in controlled environments, etc. The confrontation with Slattery is not a controlled environment.

See, I disagree. Slattery is not the type to back down; it doesn’t matter how tough you look. Moreover, you have to game it out: if you did stand up to him, he wouldn’t back down, he just try and beat the shit out of you. If you refused to submit to the beating, he’d take it as “resisting arrest” and pull out his revolver to shoot you. In short, every escalation from that point becomes more of a breach of Reserve.

I suppose that, if you had > 3 Strength and > 2 Willpower, you could stand up to him, let him beat the shit out of you, and still have enough control over the Beast to let him do that without fighting back. But I’m not certain what that would gain you.

That’s not what I said. I said, “whoever Bailey and Aichinger have connections to, you can’t name-drop them.” Of course you wouldn’t name-drop Bailey or Aichinger! :slight_smile:

I suppose? But is that something a player would really want to indebt themselves over?

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FWIW that party happens in…1885? But Slattery is happening in 1896ff. The mayor has changed.

However, let me chew on the idea of using $local_fame to get the mayor or some other esteemed member of society to step in.

EDIT: Turns out, I have a variable, $joined_stl_masonic_lodge, that is created in startup and checked twice in St. Louis, but which can never be set to true.

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Does the fourth book have new ROs? Mainly, can you romance your Maker? I dislike Silas and Clotho. Was thinking of rebuying the games, I am on a new device, but if it’s just those two, idk.

So far, I think we’ve met at least one new RO in each volume. Also, human-vampire relationships tend to be very different from vampire-vampire relationships.

most human ro died in the end and vampire ro it’s only useful if it’s benefits them

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So, I’m desperately trying to figure out what #option I can add here that doesn’t start a new plot but stays close to the existing ones, and that preferably has few if any requirements. Part of the problem at the moment is that all the #options have requirements, so it’s possible to get to this choice and not have any #options available to the player.

This is at the top of stlouis_cockerill, and the current #options are these:

*page_break
Over the next few nights, you contemplate what—if anything—is to be done about @{west_prob the imposter|West}.
*label west_loop

*choice
	#TODO.
		*comment TODO
	*selectable_if (wealth > 200000) #@{west_prob The imposter|West} is of little interest to me. Though it will cost me, I wish to raise my profile in the city, to make my predations easier.
	*if (lockridge_contactable and (lockridge_treatise = 2)) #I write to Senator Lockridge and ask for him to send me a copy of his treatise on Shepherds and Wolves.
	*if (stlouis_enterprise = 1) 
		#I urge the newspapers to extensively cover these werewolf rumors, the better to distract from mine own activities.
		#I urge the newspapers to calm the waters by only reporting hard facts, not rumors about supernatural beings.
	*if ((stlouis_enterprise = 3) or (stlouis_enterprise = 7)) #I urge the men of science to step forward and refute the existence of werewolves.
	*if ((sire_name = "Padre Carlos") and sire_alive) #I write to my dominus—and Consul Stone's new praetor—about West.
	*if (literate or (stlouis_enterprise = 8)) #I wish to try and learn more about werewolves.
	*if (west_prob) #I want see if West had any intimates or other offspring that might care about his death.
	*if (can_ask_bowater_for_saw_text) 
		#Actually, I'm interested in a different type of wolf; I write to Senator Bowater regarding [i]Of Shepherds and Wolves.[/i]

As you can see, I have nine options already! They (almost) all have to do with either wolves or West. But it’s very possible to not be able to do any of these things.

Once I do this, I’ll be able to push an update to the beta.

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Summary

So, if I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for ways to “cast a wider net”, correct?

:thinking:

  • I would suggest this:
    • *if (stlouis_enterprise = 1 or (status > 2) and (literate))

      • The new conditions are sort of a “concerned citizen” with connections is writing in.
  • I would add:
    • *if (literate or (stlouis_enterprise = 8 (or their religion is not christian/or are christians with high independence))) #I wish to try and learn more about werewolves.

      • or a character with (literate and (lore > 1 and (creation > 1)))
        • The reasoning for these conditions are… you remember some mythical/fantastical creature from your previous studies and/or works of art.
      • An honorable mention:
        • *if shapeshifting > 2

          • Perhaps the character can enlist the help of animals to figure this out. Horses did help us out in Volume 2.
  • I’d offer:
    • *if (west_prob or (a cordial relation relation with Becard and (the MC is not French)))

      • We have West’s only (known) broodmates in the same city as our character. One of them runs thist joint. The other (as the default Tribune) enforces the Quaestor’s orders. Our character can be more proactive in researching West, especially if they’re their “kin”.

@jasonstevanhill, I hope that’s more or less in line with what you were looking for.

:+1:

@jasonstevanhill there’s a bug that preventing to opening the stat screen

Line 279 not a number: False

Yeah, I changed a variable that causes in-progress games to break.

Human-vampire relationships are boring unless the human gets turned into a vampire.

Perhaps, but once turned that relationship ceases to be a human-vampire, wouldn’t it?

:thinking:

Speaking of vampire relationships, I don’t believe this was ever confirmed or denied as a possible option…

:pleading_face: :point_right: :point_left:

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Feeding from animals when other vampires are likely to be around?

:vampire: :sun_with_face:

So romantic!

Ah, there it is!

@mistylavenda has managed to lure some people in with a romantic scene but will soon reveal how her character but will soon reveal how her character is tired of it all, and is going to "welcome the Sun like an old friend. No doubt a tribute to Armand and/or Lestatnd Lestat

By the way, are those plans tioll on the table?

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I noticed how the Veiled Prophet Ball has changed so one has to write to Bailey instead of Aichinger for an invitation. It stands to reason that the character can tell both of them have a lot of power in the city. So surely couldn’t one get to choose to write to either of them? Depending on which one took the character aside during the welcome to St Louis segment.

Another point is during the Rosebud Sportsman social club. I understand the whole notion of trespass, but couldn’t a pro-worker minded vampire, regardless of ethnicity, have the option to access the venue in order to make the case for black and white workers to unify through the trade unions and so on, against the powerful interests of the city? Seems pertinent after trying to organise a protest previously in the game and noticing it was all white, and it’s before the Streetcar strike as well. Would also make a good contrast to Wheeler. And there could a threshold for levels of success. Depending on charm, involvement with the workers, involvement with the exodusters, and so on.

It would also be nice to have a good closing point for the character who’s pro-worker, at the end of St Louis in the way it’s possible to achieve suffrage or prohibition. Not sure what it could be, but the thread seems to go nowhere.The option to help Baiamonte in the strike can be hard to reach too, even if the character has been pursuing pro worker options for the whole of St Louis. Maybe the prerequisites could be adjusted somewhat?

@jasonstevanhill Some more bits:
Firstly the lore stat. If a character has intelligence and literacy, perhaps Latin, could it be added as one of the random trait gains in the character development stage.

There’s also a couple of continuity errors in that, unless told by Rios, a character of 3 lore won’t know about Senators being representatives of and not to the Society at the Governor’s reception. Since a character with two points of lore knows about the position of Quaestor not being officially given to the Dominus early on, perhaps a character with such knowledge of the society might have another way to find out about the Senate. Also a character of 3 Lore ought to know about Shephard’s and Wolves, but if one lacks French or doesn’t stop the Quaker, one is reduced to asking about the debate without knowing the terminology at the Memphis receptions. After all if they can recognise it if Rios mentions it at the Governor’s reception, they ought to know about it in their own right, already. So perhaps some expositional text could be helpful there.

The character’s callousness also increases when one kills the Dominus at the start. I think this could be tempered somewhat if the Dominus’ declared himself a god and used violence against the character (if the character is a devout christian for example). The patricide could be seen as an act of self defence and reflected accordingly in the stats.

Finally, when Rios asks the character about his ambitions, there’s no option to say that one wants to serve the Quaestor, as one can say about the Dominus. Since, in those circumstances, von der Velde is like a surrogate father, it makes sense to be able to claim some sense of loyalty.

Further EDIT:
Also when the character has the option to refuse to feed from the wounded solider during the opening scene, could the character with three willpower have a follow up scene where one can try and continue to feed primarily from animals? Seems like a good bit of flavour to have about the struggle to retain one’s humanity, rather than waiting to tell Rios one’s feeding preferences. It would also an interesting dimension to our interactions with Maffi. As things stand she really just seems to come along just to tell us how shit we are. Being able to interact with her character in another way would make things more interesting. I say three willpower of course, since underneath that the temptation to feed from humans would be too much to resist, whether one likes it or not.

FURTHER EDIT: You could also include ‘Theresia’ in the list of Theresa variants for the Governor visit, as Overstreet approves of a namesake. This is the German variant of the name.

You may have noticed that the Jesse, St Louis instalment is broken. He comes, we meet him with Bailey, then Draper appears, we skip his dialogue and go to the horse race, and the only thing that comes up is that we decide to let him learn his lesson. Having looked at the story though it seems to lack something. Particularly if we’ve discovered his masonic affiliations, we have some notion that Jesse has gone on some form of journey, which explains his absence from the second caucus. Him turning up to bet on a horse seems to ignore that character development. Or why, if he was a loyalist he’s chatting away to Bailey like bosom friends or turns up when West is on the prowl. Something feels absent from the story somehow.

Also it would be nice, if dispatched to St Louis by Lockridge, to have some further interaction with him. Either in sending him updates on the political situation, West and then in the Quaestor selection at the end of St Louis. As things stand, there’s no way to push the loyalist cause at all.

And also, it would be nice to have a reason, any reason really, to have a vampire who avoids the society at all cost turn up at the final Memphis reception. Really any reason, that could explain away the breaking of a habit of lifetime. Morbid curiosity, a favour to Dido or her maker, just something.

And there’s also a matter of the Indian’s religion. Perhaps there could be a few points, perhaps like with the priest, but also at the point in St Louis where one can consider whether to go to the church and confess, where the Indian character could decide to try and convert back, or at least find out more about, the Sun God of his tribe? Especially with all the intro info about the character’s parents using pagan rituals on the grandmother’s body, and the possibility of being converted in one’s teenage years.

And another thing about feeding. Say if the character fed from socialites and was either black or Indian whilst having 4 stealth. Could one have the option of accessing and feeding from white society instead? Perhaps the character might have reservations over feeding from one’s own and wouldn’t say, want to disgrace a black socialite into appearing drunk after being fed on. In the way Rios objected in particular to children and priests.

Even further to the above: If one met Lockridge through corresponding with other members of the society, there’s nothing to indicate that one’s been acquitted in the random encounter before the Memphis reception.

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@jasonstevanhill Thought I’d start another tag since the last one was getting glitchy. Anyhow when M Lafontaine offers the character his slave for a year, couldn’t there be an option instead, with the streetwise trait or by simply having enough fighting ability, to shake him down for the money, or at least intimidate him into finding the money for the character? Maybe the fighting requirement can be one point less than for the outlaw vampire a few scenes later, as this is pre checkpoint, and Lafontaine lacks the supernatural strength the vampire does.

EDIT: Furthermore I think a character interested in the arts could have a more substantial storyline to follow. In your notes you mention an idea to integrate the Choral Symphony, but one could also push for the number of musicians to be expanded so the Symphony Orchestra could be formed a few decades earlier. With the character pushing a greater focus on the musicians over the chorus. There’s already seeds of that in trying to attract more players for Aichinger’s Biergarten and finding the best talent from amongst the Exodusters. Furthermore, a pro worker character could push for the body to become self-governing. Finding bigger premises too is another point, like the Kiel Opera House that opened in the 1930s.

All that aside, a character with a particular hubris could also try and arrange to do concerts himself. Such as an ensemble or something bigger for the anti worker elite party (lobbying for a bigger opera house could be done here) or even with the full orchestra at the St Louis fair. Perhaps leading to a similar reaction from the St Louis Court, as one gets if one decides to build the city’s second motorcar. A dressing down for exposing oneself so much. But at the same time, it could lead to another scene with the artistically minded Rios who has arrived for the fair.

This latter thing, would in part remedy the situation at the Fair where one can meet a lot of vampires, particularly ones like Rios of course and Withers who can become almost surrogate parents to the character and otherwise play big roles in the pre Memphis part of one’s character’s life. They appear, in St Louis, a few questions are exchanged and they disappear off the map, and are almost pale imitations of what they were like before. Having a little more dialogue with them. Seeing them/writing to them again (like with Chiara in Memphis) before they leave the city or if they ended up being stuck in the city during the West showdown, would give these very important characters the attention they deserve.

The character that’s done the best in this context is Dido, We see her come to the city and represent her maker, and if we’re friendly we get to engage in some conversation, whilst having the option to engage with her more extensively once Gudrun’s done her thing. And then we get to meet her again at the fair. Over all, this character relationship is managed incredibly well, and extending this treatment to Rios and Withers would do wonders for the gaming experience.

(Also exchanging letters with Rios like one can with Jesse would be nice too. Of course she may vanish after a time due to the Cuban business, but until then it’s a reasonable alternative in playthroughs where one allied with her over Jesse.)

EDIT AGAIN: Playing the Indian translator character in Vicksburg got me thinking about the character’s interaction with events during the Civil War. When one corners the Quaker, it’s mentioned how some Indian tribes had formed alliances with the Confederacy, but it’s almost shoved in as an afterthought and it’s the first time we hear about it. Perhaps this could be expanded in someway.

A character in general could use one’s connections to help smuggle slaves out of the city or supplies to the Confederate soldiers, even help with raising some battalions at the start, depending on one’s inclinations. If one has established ties with Maffi previously, perhaps her contacts could help if one was anti Confederate. A financially minded character could try and make some money off the whole thing. One can already obtain booze to help with feeding, of course. But this could be made into some form of profit making scheme too. After all, we hear Jesse made a lot of money in the Civil War, so it’s within reason that one’s character gets a go too, in one’s small way.

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