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Author Topic: Mistborn General Purpose Newbie-Friendly Q&A Thread  (Read 250 times)
tracker7
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« on: December 26, 2014, 04:02:44 PM »

It's been suggested that we have a thread for questions from new forum members, like the existing one over in the Fantasy Craft subforum. So, let's try it! New to the game and our community, and have a question? Here's the place for it.

Ask and answer away!
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The above may be conjecture, deliberate paraphrase, or outright bullshit.

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davachido
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2014, 06:43:31 AM »

Thanks for posting this thread tracker7.

I've been mostly playing RPG games with an adventure spin like D&D, savage worlds, FC that sort of thing. I have also played quite a few games such as FATE and Intrepid which are more collaborative storytelling like Mistborn is. The closest game I've ever played to Mistborn is Spellbound Kingdoms. I state this just to put what my players and myself are currently used to.

Mistborn feels like a mesh of traditional RPGs with story telling which is great, though on paper it makes my players hesitant on choosing certain roles.

My question pertains to how to Characters without players keep up? On paper my players were happy to give up a few stat points to become Kandra to play a noble for example, since they could shapeshift at what they considered minimal loss. I know the game doesn't try to balance things out completely, I don't think that's the goal. However how do non powered characters fair in the long run, do the two traits really make up for what they lose? As I see lots of discussions on powers in the forums I was wondering if anyone even liked to play characters like Dox from the books. I have only run two sessions so what myself and the players see on paper could work out totally different than we expect.

I haven't read Alloy of Law supplement (since I haven't read that novel so I'm not spoiling myself just yet), do non powered PCs get stunts of their own? Since all the powered PCs have loads of choice for stunts, I can't find any in the base book.

Right onto a few general questions:

I couldn't find a clear phrase in the book but; when you resolve a standing conflict and your attribute goes down by 1, is this some form of tracking or does it reduce your stat for all subsequent rolls until you recover that attribute?

In changing the world section it describes some abilities you can use with only 6 or more dice, this slightly relates to my previous question. If the attribute has been reduced so that you only have 5 dice instead of 6, you can not make the roll correct? However can you make the roll if something boosts your current role, say something working for you or a trait? So you have 4 dice but two traits increase it to 6, does that work?

Prop section p110; For props such as Steel plate, when it says the number of props you may have drop by 1. This means that it effectively takes up 2 prop slots correct? The wording confuses me a little. So say you have 4 max props, take steel plate. You now have 3 max props and 1 chosen. Is that how it's meant to work? If that is correct is there any reason it reduces your max props instead of just taking up 2 slots?

A bit of a lore question on Inquisitors
(click to show/hide)

That's all I got for now, thanks in advance!
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lord Claincy Ffnord
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« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2014, 11:05:05 AM »

I think my answers should all be accurate, but hopefully someone will chime in if I get something wrong Tongue

My question pertains to how to Characters without players keep up? On paper my players were happy to give up a few stat points to become Kandra to play a noble for example, since they could shapeshift at what they considered minimal loss. I know the game doesn't try to balance things out completely, I don't think that's the goal. However how do non powered characters fair in the long run, do the two traits really make up for what they lose? As I see lots of discussions on powers in the forums I was wondering if anyone even liked to play characters like Dox from the books. I have only run two sessions so what myself and the players see on paper could work out totally different than we expect.
Generally we have found that powered characters are stronger than non-powered ones. That said, a non-powered character can quite happily boost their attributes and standings to levels that powered characters struggle with and running around with 8+ resources or influence could be a lot of fun. All the same, if the campaign goes on long enough I think you will find most un-powered characters taking on powers. Having powers just expands your options so much and for a lot of things (particularly combat) powers can allow you to get really large dice pools that an un-powered character couldn't match. Still, even an un-powered character has a lot of potential for upgrades and coming up with a situation for your character to snap in if you do decide to become an allomancer down the line (for example) can lead to great story possibilities.

So basically, it can work and having someone with particularly high standings can be awesome, but they will probably end up taking powers eventually (in my experience.) Most players choose someone with powers, but you can have plenty of fun with an un-powered character, and being able to choose an allomantic power/s later down the line is a nice perk. How good the two traits are really depends on how well you pick them.

To look at things from a direct math standpoint let's take 2 characters. One starts as a thug misting with average powers and strong/weak attributes and standings. The other starts with no powers and strong/average attributes and standings.

After a number of sessions they both progress to the exact same point having:
-rating 5 pewter with 1 stunt
-22 (13 + 9) total points in attributes and standings combined
-2 bonus traits

To get to this point the thug has to spend
-0AP on powers
-5 AP * 2 to raise one of his attributes or standings twice (or raise 2 different ones once)
-4 AP * 2 to get the two bonus traits
18 AP total

The un-powered person has to spend:
-10 AP to snap into a thug with rating 4
-5 AP to increase that rating to 5
-4 AP to get a stunt
19 AP total

So they end up exactly the same with only a difference of 1AP cost. The point here is that worrying about larger costs down the line really shouldn't effect your choice if you are considering becoming a misting down the line. If you are thinking of becoming a mistborn or keeper it is a very different story as having a rating of 1 higher in all powers is significantly more valuable.

I haven't read Alloy of Law supplement (since I haven't read that novel so I'm not spoiling myself just yet), do non powered PCs get stunts of their own? Since all the powered PCs have loads of choice for stunts, I can't find any in the base book.
There are gun stunts in alloy of law that give non-powered characters more room to upgrade, it's good Smiley (Though naturally powered characters can also take them.)

I couldn't find a clear phrase in the book but; when you resolve a standing conflict and your attribute goes down by 1, is this some form of tracking or does it reduce your stat for all subsequent rolls until you recover that attribute?
When making rolls using your standings you use what you have currently available. So if you have 6 resources and you have used/lost 2 of them and you then made a resource roll you would have 4 dice (+traits/circumstances/whatever).

In changing the world section it describes some abilities you can use with only 6 or more dice, this slightly relates to my previous question. If the attribute has been reduced so that you only have 5 dice instead of 6, you can not make the roll correct? However can you make the roll if something boosts your current role, say something working for you or a trait? So you have 4 dice but two traits increase it to 6, does that work?
I'm not actually sure if the rules ever state either way, though crafty may well have answered it at some point. Regardless, how we play and how I strongly suspect it works is that you need to have 6 or more available points to make those rolls. So if you had 6 resources but had used 1, you wouldn't be able to gather troops.

Prop section p110; For props such as Steel plate, when it says the number of props you may have drop by 1. This means that it effectively takes up 2 prop slots correct? The wording confuses me a little. So say you have 4 max props, take steel plate. You now have 3 max props and 1 chosen. Is that how it's meant to work? If that is correct is there any reason it reduces your max props instead of just taking up 2 slots?
Yeah it's a slightly weird way of saying it, I find it easiest to just think of it as taking up 2 slots. I don't think you're missing anything here, it's just a different way of working the same thing.

A bit of a lore question on Inquisitors
(click to show/hide)
I don't believe we know for certain which spike it is, though I suspect it is the spike that grants them gold feruchemy.


Hope that helps.
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Kurkistan_
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« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2014, 11:12:50 AM »

Regarding the "linchpin" spike, we do not know which spike specifically it is. It doesn't need to be the Feruchemy-granting spike, though.
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Herowannabe
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2014, 03:06:09 PM »

Quote
I don't believe we know for certain which spike it is, though I suspect it is the spike that grants them gold feruchemy.

Regarding the "linchpin" spike, we do not know which spike specifically it is. It doesn't need to be the Feruchemy-granting spike, though.

Agreed. We do know that not all Inquisitors had exactly the same sets of spikes, and some don't have any feruchemical spikes at all.
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Tellingdwar
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« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2014, 03:13:51 PM »

I always assumed the linchpin was typically an Atium spike placed to grant allomantic Atium.

... On the note of Inquisitor's spikes, I once had a player remove an Inquisitor's fGold spike with a ballista bolt... *grumble grumble cursed dice grumble*
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lord Claincy Ffnord
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« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2014, 08:24:34 PM »

Quote
I don't believe we know for certain which spike it is, though I suspect it is the spike that grants them gold feruchemy.

Regarding the "linchpin" spike, we do not know which spike specifically it is. It doesn't need to be the Feruchemy-granting spike, though.

Agreed. We do know that not all Inquisitors had exactly the same sets of spikes, and some don't have any feruchemical spikes at all.
I always assumed the linchpin was typically an Atium spike placed to grant allomantic Atium.

The point being we don't really know, so go with whatever works best for your campaign. Smiley
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davachido
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« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2014, 06:29:50 AM »

Thanks for the help guys.

Another question popped into my head while doing some planning. In the books people if they are perceptive enough can tell if the are being soothed or rioted. People such as obligators. I haven't found any rules to say you can do this. Are there any?
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SirJerric
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« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2014, 01:42:06 PM »

Another question popped into my head while doing some planning. In the books people if they are perceptive enough can tell if the are being soothed or rioted. People such as obligators. I haven't found any rules to say you can do this. Are there any?
The basic rules are on pages 329 and 334-335, where it notes that with failure, two complications (for example, rolling a result of one with one nudge against a difficulty four) can be spent to alert the target, and four can be spent to identify the Allomancer.

I don't recall reading anything else on the subject, but I'd think nothing amiss if the obligator had a one complication discount on both of those checks.
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« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2014, 03:12:45 PM »

Just to throw in my two cents,

1. Hot tip: Don't play the non-powered standings guy like Dox (who pretty much did everything awesome off screen). Play him like Raymond Reddington from The Blacklist, or Kaser Soze from The Usual Suspects. If you're having people arrested, travelling with a team of bodyguards, and sending teams of Hazekiller Extras at your foes, you're doing it right. You can assuredly play like the team's supplier if you want, but make sure you get some fun "crime-lord" action in there.

2. Having a Standing at 6 is a lot like having a power. Hell, Influence 6 lets you release yourself from Jail... from memory there's a section in the Influence rules that warns you to behave because Influence is potentially broken. And while being an Allomancer is fun, so is retaining a Thug as an Enforcer (a Wilhelm to your Jack, perhaps?) and two Lurchers as bodyguards (something I've been dying to do, but I don't have the resources yet). Oooh! And a Kandra! Have a Kandra on tap. All the Shenanigans of a Kandra without having to actually play as one!!! What was I talking about again?

Perhaps there's a requisite degree of depravity required to do non-powered standings guy properly... actually Ianto Jones is another good role model and he's good aligned. Yes he mostly cleans up messes off screen, but you really get to see how his standings come into play during Torchwood: Children of Earth.
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rafter613
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« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2014, 12:04:21 PM »

I've been playing for almost 6 months now and still have a very basic question:
What knowledge does the Narrator have to release to the players in regards to NPC actions or traits? Like, when I introduce an NPC, should I say that he's got the trait Clumsy? What about the Inquisitor trait Puppet of Ruin? That's pretty spoilery... If not, how do the PCs take advantage of their traits?
Also, do I need to announce the NPCs' actions during the declare action/gather dice phase, or do just the PCs need to announce?

Thanks.
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Kurkistan_
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« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2014, 12:09:35 PM »

Maybe I'm a bit fuzzy on this, but I thought other characters couldn't exploit your Traits? You/the Narrator can add or take away dice based on whether the Trait helps or hinders in a situation, but I'd thought only Burdens could be exploited by other characters.

As to the second point, I believe all are treated equally during combat in that regard; so NPCs should declare in their proper order.
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Herowannabe
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« Reply #12 on: December 30, 2014, 12:36:34 AM »

I've been playing for almost 6 months now and still have a very basic question:
What knowledge does the Narrator have to release to the players in regards to NPC actions or traits? Like, when I introduce an NPC, should I say that he's got the trait Clumsy? What about the Inquisitor trait Puppet of Ruin? That's pretty spoilery... If not, how do the PCs take advantage of their traits?

What Kurkistan said. Also, as for how much to reveal, I guess that depends on the narrator. Personally, I like keeping details about NPCs secret from the players (and also, sometimes, details about the other players' character sheets.  Evil). What I WILL do though, is tell the characters how many dice the NPC is rolling, so that they can get an idea of how powerful the NPC is and what traits he has.
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