Jump to content

Breaking Soulstones


ezramantis
 Share

Recommended Posts

I'm really surprised that the rules state that "no matter the lade, a soulstone can only hold a single charge".  So since the lade of a soulstone has no effect on its relative power, neither how many charges it can hold nor it's overall effect, what's to stop a group from breaking up the soulstones they have to increase their number of equally powered soulstones?

Granted a higher lade soulstone can power constructs for longer, but that's the only way that higher lade stones "hold more powerful magical charges". If your intent is to use it for suits and :+flipthen smash away right?

Sure you gotta be closer to charge em, but just have the party's melee character tote the empties. (Or you make soulstone arrow heads and save a high card to cheat in for the kill shot hee hee. Oh! Or 0 lade soulstone settings in a pair of brass knuckles! "They WERE holding the soulstone when they died. They were holding my fist in their face!"

If a charged soulstone is broken do the pieces lose their charge? No biggie if your group is unsavoury enough they can just kill some orphans. Or a more noble party of Fated could spend a day offering comfort at a hospital on a regular basis and "ease the passing" of the terminally ill.

Ok, I'm a bit off track. Point is I don't understand why a soulstone's lade doesn't have a bigger effect on it's power.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, ezramantis said:

I'm really surprised that the rules state that "no matter the lade, a soulstone can only hold a single charge".  So since the lade of a soulstone has no effect on its relative power, neither how many charges it can hold nor it's overall effect, what's to stop a group from breaking up the soulstones they have to increase their number of equally powered soulstones?

Amateur gem crafting.  It's not quite as easy as getting a clamp, a chisel, and a hammer.  One of the 1st edition stories talks about Ramos's Leviathan and the cracked soul stone that he had to make due with to power it, by the way.

1 hour ago, ezramantis said:

Granted a higher lade soulstone can power constructs for longer, but that's the only way that higher lade stones "hold more powerful magical charges". If your intent is to use it for suits and :+flipthen smash away right?

Sure you gotta be closer to charge em, but just have the party's melee character tote the empties. (Or you make soulstone arrow heads and save a high card to cheat in for the kill shot hee hee. Oh! Or 0 lade soulstone settings in a pair of brass knuckles! "They WERE holding the soulstone when they died. They were holding my fist in their face!"

They wrote a bunch in the TOS background material describing sending soldiers into battle carrying or wearing soul stones so that after death they'll be able to continue serving their country.  Concerning soul stone arrow heads, have you ever gone bow and arrow hunting in the woods or out in the city streets?

1 hour ago, ezramantis said:

If a charged soulstone is broken do the pieces lose their charge? No biggie if your group is unsavoury enough they can just kill some orphans. Or a more noble party of Fated could spend a day offering comfort at a hospital on a regular basis and "ease the passing" of the terminally ill.

When they get to either of these situations, the Guild representative will give them a number to wait in line.  I'm sure you'll advance in line and the Guild won't continually pull rank to keep you waiting to see your victim.

For Heaven's sake, it's been a hundred years or so, the mean and unscrupulous people who control the soul stones have been working on schemes to keep them powered.  :) 

1 hour ago, ezramantis said:

Ok, I'm a bit off track. Point is I don't understand why a soulstone's lade doesn't have a bigger effect on it's power.

You'd prefer to have to track charges, or make something up about how a person controls the release of fractional portions of the soul stone's power?

I think the implications are that:

1.  A greater soul stone can store more power, or you can get more power out of what it's storing, but you need an external mechanism to enable that to happen.  Unless you're performing a ritual (or constructed the appropriate runes or other mystical equipment), a person doesn't have a fine enough control on their own over the forces to see a difference.

2.  People have done worse in the published stories.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, ezramantis said:

I'm really surprised that the rules state that "no matter the lade, a soulstone can only hold a single charge".  So since the lade of a soulstone has no effect on its relative power, neither how many charges it can hold nor it's overall effect, what's to stop a group from breaking up the soulstones they have to increase their number of equally powered soulstones?

Breaking a Soulstone in half doesn't create two Soulstones, anymore than breaking a computer in half creates two computers.

You just end up with two halves of a non-functioning and broken Soulstone.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Mason said:

Breaking a Soulstone in half doesn't create two Soulstones, anymore than breaking a computer in half creates two computers.

You just end up with two halves of a non-functioning and broken Soulstone.

So do most of the raw soul stones dug out of the ground need some sort of refining?  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, solkan said:

Amateur gem crafting.  It's not quite as easy as getting a clamp, a chisel, and a hammer.  One of the 1st edition stories talks about Ramos's Leviathan and the cracked soul stone that he had to make due with to power it, by the way.

- I'll have to check that story out.

Quote

They wrote a bunch in the

TOS background material describing sending soldiers into battle carrying or wearing soul stones so that after death they'll be able to continue serving their country.  Concerning soul stone arrow heads, have you ever gone bow and arrow hunting in the woods or out in the city streets?

- I have been bow hunting (in the woods). I'm nowhere near as good as a ten thunders archer though :). (I'd be eating well if I was.)

Quote

When they get to either of these situations, the Guild representative will give them a number to wait in line.  I'm sure you'll advance in line and the Guild won't continually pull rank to keep you waiting to see your victim.

For Heaven's sake, it's been a hundred years or so, the mean and unscrupulous people who control the soul stones have been working on schemes to keep them powered.  :)

- Ah, here's the thing I need to start doing if I'm gonna run a game:  thinking like the Guild instead of like an Archanist.  As I read up on stuff in preparation I can see how my players will try to manipulate things but it's harder to think about how to reign them in with setting as opposed to rules. Need to start thinking like an oppressive, power hungry, world spanning organization.

 

You'd prefer to have to track charges, or make something up about how a person controls the release of fractional portions of the soul stone's power?

- We track ammo and magic item charges in plenty o games. It's been suggested as a way to handle OP weapons in TtB. Gotta track ammo capacity for guns in TtB so charges for soulstones wouldn`t be any different. And if each soul is a charge they're just kinda like magic tic tacs :) with the soulstone as a dispenser.

Edited by ezramantis
figuring out how the quote thing works
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If a soulstone works more like a computer than a "stone", what's the deal with soulstone dust? I get that it can't be recharged but it must retain some charge if it can power limbs and constructs.

It seems like, from what's being said, if you break a bowling ball sized soulstone in half it effectively becomes extremely course grain soulstone dust rather than two huge soulstones.

So at that point you'd get more use out of it if you ground it into dust and used it to power constructs, right?  Because a soulstone powers a construct for a number of weeks equal to it's lade but soulstone dust will power a construct for a month. And you'd get a good amount of dust out of a bowling ball sized "stone".

Unless soulstone dust also comes in grades of some sort that effectively equal it's lade. So you'd need more opaque dust to achieve the same fuel value as a small amount of transparent dust. Basically whatever amounts to 4 lade worth of dust. When buying dust your 5 scrip could get you anything from a small dufflebag to a pinch depending on the quality of the dust.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, ezramantis said:

If a soulstone works more like a computer than a "stone", what's the deal with soulstone dust? I get that it can't be recharged but it must retain some charge if it can power limbs and constructs.

It seems like, from what's being said, if you break a bowling ball sized soulstone in half it effectively becomes extremely course grain soulstone dust rather than two huge soulstones.

So at that point you'd get more use out of it if you ground it into dust and used it to power constructs, right?  Because a soulstone powers a construct for a number of weeks equal to it's lade but soulstone dust will power a construct for a month. And you'd get a good amount of dust out of a bowling ball sized "stone".

Unless soulstone dust also comes in grades of some sort that effectively equal it's lade. So you'd need more opaque dust to achieve the same fuel value as a small amount of transparent dust. Basically whatever amounts to 4 lade worth of dust. When buying dust your 5 scrip could get you anything from a small dufflebag to a pinch depending on the quality of the dust.

I don’t know off hand if it’s been established in the lore how hard a soulstone is, but I’m pretty sure there’s been reference to crushing them during the release process.  There’s presumably a minimum necessary volume of soulstone material needed to hold a useful charge, and when you crush the material below that volume you get something that’s difficult to charge and/or release the charge from.  And soulstone dust has the problematic issue of being easily divisible after charging...

The useability of soulstone dust to hold a charge is probably a purely pragmatic decision:  How to reward the players with some magic power, without giving them a rechargeable magic battery?  And how do you avoid putting a “Mug me for indescribable power!” sign around the neck of everyone with an augmented limb?  It’s probably a weak point in the lore at this point.

I think what happened in 1st edition TTB is someone tried to come up with “How do you get a charged soulstone without an actual life ending event?”, and that background suffering option is what got removed.

As far as the utility of a bowling ball sized soulstone vs. the same volume of dust, I’d be willing to consider that a math error and adjust as necessary.  :)  If you split the bowling ball into two stones, you should have a net loss in utility.

Concerning soulstone arrow heads...  

4 hours ago, ezramantis said:

- I have been bow hunting (in the woods). I'm nowhere near as good as a ten thunders archer though :). (I'd be eating well if I was.)

Okay, good, especially if you’ve had to remove arrows from corpses.

How many arrows do you lose each time you go out?  And how stressful would hunting be for you if you had an arrowhead that you couldn’t allow to get lost?

And really this ties back to the hardness question.  I don’t know whether it’s been established that a soulstone in an arrowhead would survive the impact.  But it is established in the TOS material that you can make a charged soulstone blow up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, solkan said:

I don’t know off hand if it’s been established in the lore how hard a soulstone is, but I’m pretty sure there’s been reference to crushing them during the release process.  There’s presumably a minimum necessary volume of soulstone material needed to hold a useful charge, and when you crush the material below that volume you get something that’s difficult to charge and/or release the charge from.  And soulstone dust has the problematic issue of being easily divisible after charging...

The useability of soulstone dust to hold a charge is probably a purely pragmatic decision:  How to reward the players with some magic power, without giving them a rechargeable magic battery?  And how do you avoid putting a “Mug me for indescribable power!” sign around the neck of everyone with an augmented limb?  It’s probably a weak point in the lore at this point.

I think what happened in 1st edition TTB is someone tried to come up with “How do you get a charged soulstone without an actual life ending event?”, and that background suffering option is what got removed.

As far as the utility of a bowling ball sized soulstone vs. the same volume of dust, I’d be willing to consider that a math error and adjust as necessary.  :)  If you split the bowling ball into two stones, you should have a net loss in utility.

Concerning soulstone arrow heads...  

Okay, good, especially if you’ve had to remove arrows from corpses.

How many arrows do you lose each time you go out?  And how stressful would hunting be for you if you had an arrowhead that you couldn’t allow to get lost?

And really this ties back to the hardness question.  I don’t know whether it’s been established that a soulstone in an arrowhead would survive the impact.  But it is established in the TOS material that you can make a charged soulstone blow up.

I feel like a soulstone arrow head would be equivalent to using obsidian or something else with a moderate hardness but high shearing potential. I'd allow them in my games, under the assumption that missing runs the risk of breaking the arrow and missing with a margin of failure would guarantee that it breaks. 

On the other end, hitting too well might also make it break. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My thought was that a soulstone headed arrow would be ideally saved for the kill shot, probably on a minion or peon, which would have a cheat card waiting in hand. Wouldn't want to waste the opportunity or lose the stone. That, of course, is the advantage a Fated bowyer has over a chump like me stomping around in the woods, cheating fate.  Even so, what a fun moment when a gremlin with that precious arrow in it's tush manages to survive and goes screaming off into the swamp in the middle of a battle and the bower abandons the group to run it down haha.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/30/2018 at 9:59 AM, ezramantis said:

If a soulstone works more like a computer than a "stone", what's the deal with soulstone dust? I get that it can't be recharged but it must retain some charge if it can power limbs and constructs.

You're correct in that Soulstone dust does hold some sort of charge.

However, unlike Soulstones, the dust can't be recharged; once the charge is spent, it's just dust.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you refine a spent/empty soulstone do you still get active dust?

Re: Arrows, the stone wouldn't neccisarily have to be the tip (just attached in someway that doesn't mess up aero dynamics too much), and it doesn't need to be the killing shot as long as it's still stuck/close in when they die.

Soul stone shuriken would be pretty cool :D:mask (or batarangs!)

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, diki said:

If you refine a spent/empty soulstone do you still get active dust?

Re: Arrows, the stone wouldn't neccisarily have to be the tip (just attached in someway that doesn't mess up aero dynamics too much), and it doesn't need to be the killing shot as long as it's still stuck/close in when they die.

I wouldn't think that refining an empty stone would get you active dust.

And how are you planning on attaching the stone if not as the head? I can't think of an easy alternative that would allow you to fire the arrow with any great force or accuracy.

You are right that it doesn't need to be the killing shot, but if its not you suffer a huge chance of losing the  highly expensive arrow in a not dead foe.

You also have the issue that narrow points are good at penetrating, but at the risk of coming out the other side of your target (depending on bow strength) where are wider heads are much more likely to get stuck in a body, but are going to be stopped by armour much more.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Adran said:

I wouldn't think that refining an empty stone would get you active dust.

And how are you planning on attaching the stone if not as the head? I can't think of an easy alternative that would allow you to fire the arrow with any great force or accuracy.

You are right that it doesn't need to be the killing shot, but if its not you suffer a huge chance of losing the  highly expensive arrow in a not dead foe.

You also have the issue that narrow points are good at penetrating, but at the risk of coming out the other side of your target (depending on bow strength) where are wider heads are much more likely to get stuck in a body, but are going to be stopped by armour much more.

 

Soul stone as the nock maybe?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Steamtastic Vagabond said:

Soul stone as the nock maybe?

I thought of that, but I'd worry about the weight, the really complicated shape required, and the potential for it to be 2-3 feet from the target when they die. Also the common battle response to getting a non-fatal arrow stuck in you was to cut the shaft loose to allow movement and so forth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information