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Ghost Whistler

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It was the one WoD game I never bought into. At that point, with the conflation of ccg elements (cantrip cards), I had moved on. I'm looking at the 20th anniversary edition which appears to be something more than just a reprint. But was it a good game and an interesting setting? Or was it just too twee for thee?
 

Picaroon Jack

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My greatest Changeling campaign was when the party set off to rescue the sidhe prince, Axl Rose, from banality. It was set in 1995 and the party was a seelie/unseelie team up:
  • the sidhe knight Sir Montgomery and his scarecrow squire, Applejacks.
  • Sledge Grondor, troll ranger
  • DJ Scratch, Pooka cat
  • Rupert the battle ogre
  • Grizzelgut the goblin.
They were bogged down looking for Axl in Los Angeles and spent most of it fighting vampires who they saw as agents of banality. When they finally made it to Axl Rose, he turned out to be a dauntain, a kithain that actually embraced and spread banality. Lots of Guns & Roses quotes through out.

axlsadsadas.png

What always appealed to me about Changeling is on the surface it looks like a band of misfits and rejects with mental issues, but with spending glamour it all becomes real. Rupert's battleax the size of a couch becomes visible and chops through a car.

The 20th Anniversary edition is massive at just over 500 pages.
 

Skywalker

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Changeling the Dreaming was my favourite WoD RPG. It didn't fit into the rest of the WoD very well, but had a compelling central premise as Jack identifies above. It was sort of like Buffy in being the real world with a level of fantasy just below the surface. You could tell all kinds of real world stories which were then exaggerated by fantastical elements.
 

James Gillen

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My greatest Changeling campaign was when the party set off to rescue the sidhe prince, Axl Rose, from banality. It was set in 1995 and the party was a seelie/unseelie team up:
  • the sidhe knight Sir Montgomery and his scarecrow squire, Applejacks.
  • Sledge Grondor, troll ranger
  • DJ Scratch, Pooka cat
  • Rupert the battle ogre
  • Grizzelgut the goblin.
They were bogged down looking for Axl in Los Angeles and spent most of it fighting vampires who they saw as agents of banality. When they finally made it to Axl Rose, he turned out to be a dauntain, a kithain that actually embraced and spread banality. Lots of Guns & Roses quotes through out.

View attachment 27995

What always appealed to me about Changeling is on the surface it looks like a band of misfits and rejects with mental issues, but with spending glamour it all becomes real. Rupert's battleax the size of a couch becomes visible and chops through a car.

The 20th Anniversary edition is massive at just over 500 pages.

Oh won't you please take me HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOME
HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOME
 

Ghost Whistler

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I think what's most helpful is that had you not posted a pic of Axl Rose, world famous rock singer with the popular beat combo, Guns And Roses, I'd have no idea who he is :grin:
 

finarvyn

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I seem to recall that the artwork was kind of neat. Never played the game, however.
 

The Butcher

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Game struck me as super iffy in that “Banality” was really, really nebulous (standing in a line at the DMV? Banal. Modernist glass and concrete building? Banal. Titty bars? Banal.) and the whole thing stank of creepy infantilization at times. Never did get around to playing it, even though one guy in our crew loved it and owned a plethora of books.
 

Stumpydave

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I loved it and had most of the books, only it was a game that lacked focus. Or rather it was three games all fighting for dominance.
It was very much, being a kid and having imaginary adventures / dismissing science = Good, any kind of maturity / acceptance of technology as good = Bad.
There's something captivating about being an alien soul and fighting a battle that is sooo important to you and yours but is as nothing to the people around you.

Changeling the Lost gives the game a much better focus but it lacks the energy and the sense of fun that Changeling the Dreaming had.
 

Ghost Whistler

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What can you do in it, other than ensure LA rockers maintain their supply of Colombia's finest?

What are the central conflicts? Are there monsters beyond other Changelings? that was always the weakest part of these games, generally speaking the conflicts were always limited to being within the scope of the type of protagonist: vampire political inighting, mages warring over reality, wraiths getting cancer from the glow in the dark material used on the rulebook, werewolves against Exxon (i suppose that's the exception). But there was never much else in terms of a broader supernatural cosmology. Are there dragons? Will we see the elves mr Frodo?
 

Ghost Whistler

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I loved it and had most of the books, only it was a game that lacked focus. Or rather it was three games all fighting for dominance.
It was very much, being a kid and having imaginary adventures / dismissing science = Good, any kind of maturity / acceptance of technology as good = Bad.
There's something captivating about being an alien soul and fighting a battle that is sooo important to you and yours but is as nothing to the people around you.

Changeling the Lost gives the game a much better focus but it lacks the energy and the sense of fun that Changeling the Dreaming had.
Changeling the Lost was pretty good, but I never ended up running it for some reason. Nothing to do with the game itself. But I felt it needed a bigger world than just "everyone's a changleing and a refugee from Arcadia". There were lots of really cool ideas but, like I just said, it cries out for a bigger cosmology. IMO
 

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My greatest Changeling session was when I was a DM guest star in another group's campaign. The players had expressed that they were mostly bored with the usual trend of "fighting bad guys in trenchoats, katanas and uzis in warehouses". So I came in with my new Troll character who had to embark upon a quest to prove his worth to their Elf King and Queen (whom the PCs hardly EVER interacted with, as most of the campaign was located in the REAL world). It was a delight as I ripped off drew inspiration from Neil Gaiman's Stardust.

Airships, evil Unseelie assassins in bolar hats and bad cockney accents, a magical wooden forest (as in, the trees were made of wooden sculptures, nails and everything) and a final battle on a hill topped with a Baba Yaga-inspired hut.

The players enjoyed it quite a bit because... get this... I actually put myth and folklore and fantasy into a Changeling game. WTF? Not just more gritty World of Darkness fights in alleyways?
 

Séadna

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I always wanted to know more about this. Is the 20th Anniversary Edition a good summary of the line like for Vampire the Masquerade?
 

Stumpydave

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Airships, evil Unseelie assassins in bolar hats and bad cockney accents, a magical wooden forest (as in, the trees were made of wooden sculptures, nails and everything) and a final battle on a hill topped with a Baba Yaga-inspired hut.

The players enjoyed it quite a bit because... get this... I actually put myth and folklore and fantasy into a Changeling game. WTF? Not just more gritty World of Darkness fights in alleyways?

If you're not throwing in tenuous links to myth and folklore (like an internet troll, messaging from under a bridge) are you even playing Changeling?!?!?!?!?!
 

Necrozius

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If you're not throwing in tenuous links to myth and folklore (like an internet troll, messaging from under a bridge) are you even playing Changeling?!?!?!?!?!
Exactly what went through my mind when I ran that session and got feedback from the players. I was kind of stunned, and decided not to join their campaign as a player.
 
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TristramEvans

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Are there monsters beyond other Changelings?

Yes. EVERY monster actually - Dragons, Hydra, Gryphons, etc - Chimera from the Dreaming taking the form of legendary threats to humanity.

And beyond that are the Big Bads of the setting, the ancient foes of the Tuatha De Danann - The Fomorians.
 

Gringnr

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I think what's most helpful is that had you not posted a pic of Axl Rose, world famous rock singer with the popular beat combo, Guns And Roses, I'd have no idea who he is :grin:

I will never tire of mentioning, apropos of nothing, that Guns N' Rosess lifted their entire schtick from Hanoi Rocks, right down to axl getting the same tattoo as Michael Monroe...
HR.jpg
 

Ghost Whistler

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My greatest Changeling session was when I was a DM guest star in another group's campaign. The players had expressed that they were mostly bored with the usual trend of "fighting bad guys in trenchoats, katanas and uzis in warehouses". So I came in with my new Troll character who had to embark upon a quest to prove his worth to their Elf King and Queen (whom the PCs hardly EVER interacted with, as most of the campaign was located in the REAL world). It was a delight as I ripped off drew inspiration from Neil Gaiman's Stardust.

Airships, evil Unseelie assassins in bolar hats and bad cockney accents, a magical wooden forest (as in, the trees were made of wooden sculptures, nails and everything) and a final battle on a hill topped with a Baba Yaga-inspired hut.

The players enjoyed it quite a bit because... get this... I actually put myth and folklore and fantasy into a Changeling game. WTF? Not just more gritty World of Darkness fights in alleyways?
That can't be right.

I must say I could happily jump right back into the WoD.

Ah nostalgia; but is it what is used to be?
 

Skywalker

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My best Changeling game was about a bunch of exchange students in London. It was a lot like the PC Grant books in that they were dealing with the normally difficulties of study, poor student life, and being outsiders, whilst also living into a second world of faerie hills, monsters, and magic. The bad guys were the machinations of other changelings, lecturers who just wanted to crush the dreams of their students, and dark things from actual myth and folklore of London.
 

Picaroon Jack

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Ah nostalgia; but is it what is used to be?
When I ran Mage after years of not playing any WoD game, I noticed I ditched a lot of rules and just streamlined it to the basic Attribute+Ability. I remember organizing all the charts into my own GM screen but then now just using a cheat sheet provided in the book.

It was still a blast.
 

EmperorNorton

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Changeling the Dreaming was my favorite WoD game, but I'll be damned if I can really express exactly what it was about it that made me like it so much. It had this combination of wonder and horror that just sit right with me.

The only other WoD game that I still unabashedly love is Demon: The Descent.
 

Ghost Whistler

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I'm thinking of picking up several titles. No point starting a new thread. i've just discovered that the 2nd editoins of the newer games have full rules included and are complete. Don't need the core WoD/CoD rulebook.

So Mage the Awakening interests me. I loved Ascension, but this looks a bit more interesting. No Technocracy (for good or bad). Changeling the Lost as well. Can't make my mind up between the Lost and the Dreaming. And Geist the Sin Eaters looks like a slightly less traumatic version of Wraith. I've never played it, nor MtAwakening. Haven't played Ascension in years.
 

Picaroon Jack

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I'm thinking of picking up several titles. No point starting a new thread. i've just discovered that the 2nd editoins of the newer games have full rules included and are complete. Don't need the core WoD/CoD rulebook.

So Mage the Awakening interests me. I loved Ascension, but this looks a bit more interesting. No Technocracy (for good or bad). Changeling the Lost as well. Can't make my mind up between the Lost and the Dreaming. And Geist the Sin Eaters looks like a slightly less traumatic version of Wraith. I've never played it, nor MtAwakening. Haven't played Ascension in years.
I never played the new editions after the re-boot. I am a fan of the 20th anniversary series, though, and I've picked up a few (Mage, Changeling, and Vampire: Dark Ages)
 

Stumpydave

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I liked what I saw of changeling the lost 1st ed but never picked it up for some reason. I thought I'd fix that when 2nd ed was released but the rules are horribly complicated and the writing is just...flat.
 

Skywalker

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Changeling the Lost 1e was also complex; the most complex of the original nWoD.
 

Skywalker

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As in it had more rules :smile: More seriously, not only the usual stuff for PC powers but thing like Contracts were quite heavy subsystems.
 

Ghost Whistler

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I never played the new editions after the re-boot. I am a fan of the 20th anniversary series, though, and I've picked up a few (Mage, Changeling, and Vampire: Dark Ages)
V:grin:A interests me as well, but I suspect to properly enjoy it the best you need to be historically more informed than I am. Might work for a weird Assassins Creed style thing (templars/hunters vs Vamps + jumping off tall buildings fortuitously placed and surprisingly fulsome carts of hay)
 

opaopajr

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I have mentioned before my love of CtD. For me it was the most potential of WoD tapped into classical myth and storytelling (most obviously), framed in the macro-narrative of a classical tragedy (they are cast out from where they belong and cannot -- and will not be able to -- return). It is roleplaying a now co-dependent alien thrashing around in a world drowning in apathy; as humans die inside, changeling shall die outside.

It stated specifically (and held in both its world lore and mechanics) that Science! is wonderous!, thrilling! even sexy dangerous! This was a countervailing narrative from WtA (weaver rending the wyrm mad and thus both v the wild) and MtA (technocracy as an eclipsing big bad). It asked "Why are humans not amazed or scared? Feel something, feel alive by your discovery and inventions!"

It explores the states of Awake, Dream, and Daydream and all the delightful friction that entails. What of the Awake world is inspiring or scary? What of the Dream world makes a mess of what made sense during Awake, or does it bring portent or logic to the Awake that previously seemed distant? What is this Daydreaming that blends the two, finds the gaps in coherency, opens the inside world to wonder and thrills, or causes a mess of things as it spills out? Willpower or Glamour could be recharged through how you chose to Sleep in which Seeming -- which is an excellent play off of "Are you stuck Lucid Dreaming too much and not getting enough Rest?" It asks questions about control -- either in the Awake or in the Dream -- the loss or gain of it, and how it exchanges that for enriching or taxing your inner or outer life. When and where will you have the courage to merge or reconcile the two?

It explored what it means to grow up, Seemings, and not wholly as a negative aspect but as a natural cycle for Commoners to survive this exile... until the assured end of All in the Last Age. Exploring youth (Childlings), prime (Wilder), and aged (Grumps) aspects gave emphasis on not just a kith's splat perspective, but also different stages of wonder/terror. Where Childlings runs the gauntlet of greater chimera (self-created illusions which can affect you) and bedlam risk, they also bring fresh perspective and more raw joy. Wilders can mire themselves in cruel politics and oaths of responsibility, but they believe in confident certitude and the romance of daring. Grumps stare death (even with Commoner hope of the cycle of rebirth, which given how close to the Last Age may be the Last Incarnation) and banality understanding them as greater yet inescapable threats, but they carry wisdom and temperance to otherwise excitable perspectives.

It explores the dichotomy of believing in You Only Live Once with no afterlife versus believing in Reincarnation ( :hehe: I'm sorry, it was too tempting to not use YOLO when it is appropriate). That it is further attached to Class Struggle where YOLOs are the Peerage and Reincarnation are the Commoners just amplified a poignant sympathy that would otherwise be more confrontational. And that is further complicated by Noble Houses. And then further complicated by Lost Houses. And complicated still by Recently Exiled Extra Houses. So you end up with Nouveau Riche v Old Dynasties v Old Disgraced Dynasties, all competing with their petty ideals in the face of a YOLO threat.

And then, if Kith, Age, Life Cycle Split, and Dynastic Ideals, was not enough each Changeling is understood to be mutable, switchable from Seelie to Unseelie as their heart guides them to survive (Courts). So you can find your own PC choosing nightmarish actions because it is trying to survive disillusionment. It may cease terrorizing others because it found a new inspiring source that reinvigorates its romanticized nature. It allows the alien, the changeling, to almost be flexible enough like a human, while still holding a distinctly otherworldly and overly stressed mindset.

Then the book allows for all the other splats to come in because Changeling see all other splats as Lost Kith Who Got Stuck in Their Own Narratives... (or spawn of the Dauntain, ).

Finally the Player's Guide splats out an entirely new way of seeing Changeling with the Nunnehi, swaping Court (Un/Seelie nature) for tri-part Camp (Winter/Summer/Midseason) and then the game is off to the races introducing Gallain (outsider Changeling) bringing every slice of myth under the sun into its splat potential.

OOH, and you are encouraged to make your own cards! :heart:

It's a really fun world because there is so much to pick and choose to work off of. That is a GM challenge, true, but the entirety of world myth is your oyster for making scary and or inspiring stories. Almost all genres are potentially on the table because Changeling thrive on the narratives and themes we enjoy.
 
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Trippy

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I always wanted to know more about this. Is the 20th Anniversary Edition a good summary of the line like for Vampire the Masquerade?
I think Vampire: 20th Anniversary is a good summary of Justin Achilli’s stewardship of the V:TM line from Vampire Revised onwards.
 

Trippy

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I still have Changeling: The Dreaming 1st edition and my major appraisal of it was that it was a rushed product in a number of ways, and they made errors. I don’t think the central gimmick of card-based magic proved to be popular - it was ditched from 2nd edition onwards, and some of the concepts felt heavy handed at the time.

For example, it felt at times as if the writers were telling the audience what it felt like to be a child, as if they had never experienced this for themselves ever, while the American-centric perspective of the game was grating at times. It only really detailed the American ‘kingdom’ originally, and included commentary that insinuated that ‘glamour' was declining in other countries in the world (especially European), as if the US was the only country in the world that still had any creativity or imagination left. Plenty criticized the game for feeling incongruent with the rest of the WoD games in tone also, although I think they all felt incongruent to each other a lot of the time anyway, so Changeling was hardy the odd one out in that respect. Also, the Storyteller system, in it’s fifth outing, was starting to feel very tired and clunky (for me at least) - I was looking for a lighter system in play for this type of thing.

That said, it did look pretty and as the game developed, matured and expanded, I felt it got better. In all honesty, after they all got released and I had time to digest the full writings on offer, I felt that Changeling was the best of the 20th Anniversary games and certainly most improved. I also think that outside of Vampire, Changeling is the only other WoD game that fully translates to live action play in a way that actually makes it worth playing it in that medium rather than just around the tabletop.
 
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Ghost Whistler

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Does Changeling have any monsters or forces that represent Banality? or is just conceptual? Perhaps manifesting in play as this game's Bad Point Pool?

Presumably 20th has rules that don't require cards, homemade or otherwise?
 
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