Page 469 - The Angel You Know

19th Jul 2014, 6:00 AM in Sweet and Elite
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The Angel You Know
Average Rating: 5 (2 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 19th Jul 2014, 6:00 AM edit delete
One of my favorite forms of exposition right now is casual conversation. Revealing new and important concepts in an otherwise understated manner so that, if the players are savvy enough (or the anvil is heavy enough), the players can pick up on it and pursue it themselves.

Fallout is Dragons, Session 18, is up! This one was a lot of fun (for me).
Session 18: Dropbox YouTube

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: January 27th, 2023.



Dusk Raven 19th Jul 2014, 6:18 AM edit delete reply
Ah, the perils of being a social character. Social intrigue abounds with this one.

Tell about a time your character faced peril not from combat or traps, but from indirect means...
Luna 19th Jul 2014, 7:47 AM edit delete reply
One of my favorite game is Vampire : The Masquerade. Combat ? Piece of cake ! Metting the local Prince ? Now that can be deadly in many, many ways.

Regarding Newbiespud comment about exposition through casual conversation, I agree quite a lot. Nothing like having two npc chatting casualy and dropping some vital information like it's nothing whithin pc's earshot. Especially if you notice that their attention is wavering. :p
Raxon 19th Jul 2014, 9:31 AM edit delete reply
Oh man.

How about my mermaid rogue who had such a high disguise and bluff skill that she infiltrated a vampire coven(dunno the proper term for the communal gathering place of vampires) and bluffed her way inside, claiming to be the niece of one of the inner circle. They weren't doing anything wrong, really. They were pretty much just the vampire equivalent of an elk lodge.

The worst that would have happened is that she would have been thrown out and barred from reentry.

Yes, a living, breathing, female mermaid infiltrated a gentlemen's club of ancient vampires who sit around and talk about the old days, when you could enthrall a couple virgins without the whole town hiring adventurers to slay your ass. These were vampires that bought pints of blood from townsfolk. More or less harmless, but savvy enough to know that holding villages in terror will not last forever.

Sure, they are technically evil, but they're practical, not cartoon villains. They stay in line, and avoid committing crimes to avoid recrimination.

She rolled a natural 20 for bluffing the secret handshake.

It was there. Why wouldn't I infiltrate it?
Zuche 19th Jul 2014, 10:22 AM edit delete reply
The improper term for a gathering of vampires is a stakeout.
Digo 19th Jul 2014, 10:29 AM edit delete reply
Hahaha, good one Z!!

I nearly spittaked.
Digo 19th Jul 2014, 10:37 AM edit delete reply
Shadowrun-- one time the team needed to infiltrate an exclusive mafia gathering in order to gather info on a dangerous magical artifact they were hired to destroy.

The team that went in consisted of:
Daphne - sniper with the personality of a female Captain Jack Sparrow
Blackwolf - The look and social skills of Solid Snake
Danny - former circus clown with permanent makeup stains on his face
Hugo - essentially an ork murderhobo
Snowfire - A DRAGON.

Somehow. SOMEHOW this team managed to dress up, disguise a little magical makeup on themselves, and socialize around without getting caught. Hell, Snowfire managed to get into the party and no one saw through the magical screens that he was a dragon! The only person to notice was the valet on the way out, and it was because he saw that Snowfire was wearing a clip-on tie (a fashion no-no at high ritzy parties like this.
Razomyure 19th Jul 2014, 1:53 PM edit delete reply
"A coterie of vampires" is the phrase you are looking for, Raxon.
Raxon 19th Jul 2014, 7:39 PM edit delete reply
Oddly enough, that makes me think of calling it a coathanger of vampires, which in turn makes me think of that scene from Van Helsing. You know the one. The one with the babies. Thousands and thousands of babies, all cursed to be stillborn. All saved throughout the millenia, so they just have thousands of dead babies in this room. Later in the movie, the evil stillborn babies attack a village and murder everyone.

Dead babies are no joking matter. They will rip your throat out and feast on your lifeblood.
Luna 20th Jul 2014, 3:43 AM edit delete reply
Depends. If we're Talking about Vampire: Masquerade, a Coterie tend to define a party-like group of Vampire. The whole "Club gathering to discuss how we're going to rule the world without the mortals knowing and gain more influence and power over the rest of the kindred while pretending to play nice" is usually called Elysium.

Sounds lovely, but many of my characters, all game included, found themselves into dark alleys in roguish town that weren't half as deadly. Well, there's a rule about not killing in Elysium, but it doesn't quite apply to social killing.
kriss1989 20th Jul 2014, 5:45 AM edit delete reply
Elysium is the neutral area where such meetings can happen in peace, named after the Elysian Fields of Greek mythology. A coatorie is indeed a more formalized alliance however, so the more proper term is probably clave.
Flashpoint 21st Jul 2014, 9:33 AM edit delete reply
That just makes me think of my friends character. He played an actual bear, named Bear, that was so good at diplomacy and bluffing that everyone believed he was a human, including all of the pc's. In fact, none of the actual players except the DM knew he was a bear, so everyone thought he was just a really powerful human. There was one time where a hunter had seen through it because of a failed roll and tried to rally the townsfolk against him, but Bear managed to convince the entire town that the hunter was actually the bear in disguise. He was regarded a hero who saved the town from the savage bear menace from that day forth.
Zaerosz 21st Jul 2014, 3:34 PM edit delete reply
You sure about that? Because that sounds suspiciously similar to the tale of Sir Bearington. Almost identical, in fact.
kriss1989 21st Jul 2014, 6:57 PM edit delete reply
Plenty of people have been inspired to play bears because of that. Heck, my friend played a bear Monk/Cleric gestalt.
Specter 21st Jul 2014, 7:01 PM edit delete reply
I am almost certain that there was a post/story sometime before where someone said that they had a bear disguised as a member of royalty at a giant ballroom party, right? Where one guest who saw through the disguise was thrown out for being crazy.
MumaKirby 22nd Jul 2014, 4:34 PM edit delete reply
Lawful Evil is one of my favorites to play, when I have the opportunity.
Mettaur2 19th Jul 2014, 6:31 AM edit delete reply
Looks like Rarity is caught between a tom and a hard place...

Now where does everyone else come in? Trying to help her with her cover perhaps? Oh I look forward to this.
Toric 19th Jul 2014, 8:33 AM edit delete reply
If only someone had told her it would be one of THOSE types of parties...

I can't wait to see how the Mane 6 intruding on this party to save Rarity turns out in this lion's den of conversation.
NeoSilverThorn 19th Jul 2014, 9:11 AM edit delete reply
This is going to be one of those "character is in over their heads" incidents, isn't it? Because I'm starting to get the same feeling as the time my cleric had to walk into the thieve's guild.
Guest 19th Jul 2014, 9:47 AM edit delete reply
'Mr. Pants'?! XD Oh the wonderful world of ponies and their naming system...
Zuche 19th Jul 2014, 10:20 AM edit delete reply
There's a lot to love about this one. The second panel stumble. The distressed look of confusion in the third panel. The fact that I can't tell if Fancy Pants is being snarky in the the fourth. The fifth panel overreaction would be good enough on its own, but then it sets up the finale.

It hurts to see someone that prefers the role playing aspect of the game reach out for the mechanics in a social encounter. Support is why such mechanics exist in D&D and this is a well placed reminder of that. I was happy to see that emphasized in guidelines for D&D's interim Encounters rules over the last few months: The results of a good performance should not be dependent on the results of a die roll. Maybe this strikes a chord with me because I've seen so many DMs get it backward, focusing on penalties over rewards. Some leave you better off just reaching for the dice and not bothering.
Digo 19th Jul 2014, 10:30 AM edit delete reply
I think Fancy is being a little snarky to the inspector. Covering a tad for Rarity. Social situations are fun.
Ravyn 19th Jul 2014, 10:42 AM edit delete reply
I'm one of those people who prefer the roleplaying aspect as well, and I didn't read it that way; more "Oh, crud, I self-sabotaged here but unlike me she's good enough to make that sound innocuous and maybe even convincing, can I roll her skill as a safety net?" I've always thought that that was the best use for social stats, since people threw their skill points or XP or what have you at them anyway--to provide a save just in case you aren't living up to the actual skills of your character for whatever reason. Goodness knows I needed to do that a lot when I switched from playing online (my comfort zone) to playing face to face with a rather noisier group; my ability to play social characters suffered greatly from the increased ambient noise and loss of self-editing.
Paradoxical 20th Jul 2014, 3:28 PM scoali blunder edit delete reply
I think that were I to be made into a character sheet my social skills would only be competing with my physical skills as a dump stat. Does that mean that every time that I play a social character I auto fail?
I would find that would make for a poor story (or game).
So, when I flub a reasonable action, my character shouldn't just flub it equally badly.
Example: I was a pilot/diplomancer in Star Wars. I realized late how messed over an NPC was, and of course I more or less blurted out that in the unlikely event that we had a full success, he was toast.
Yeah. Not a glorious moment.
In retrospect I think it may have been something the mercenary might have done. He wasn't much a hero type. But I hadn't planned it! Had it made a difference I'd have derailed the whole session (because of offending an NPC).
shayminj 23rd Jul 2014, 3:40 PM edit delete reply
i disagree. it's better to have the numbers there for you to fall back on. the roleplaying should never make the numbers irrelevant. (yes, the same is true in reverse, but from a roleplaying perspective, she's choosing a course of action, same as if you said i hit him with my hammer, or a more detailed version of that.)
if being good at fighting IRL doesn't give benifits in-game, why should being good at talking? in this case, from a roleplaying perspective, she's choosing to play along and try to scout them out, rather than a more brute force approach, like asking, "do you have firsthand experience with ECC covers?" or "what's it like at the ECC?".
Specter 19th Jul 2014, 11:22 AM edit delete reply
Ha, now I understand where this is going, and I did NOT see this coming. Wow, It is going to take some real social and stealth skills to either get out or get help. This page made my day.
Specter 19th Jul 2014, 11:25 AM edit delete reply

Did we miss something here? Did Rarity somehow go to a criminal "prevention" party, thinking it was a criminal "syndicate" party? Well, I think of one Sly Dog she could learn from. (Maybe)
Jennifer 19th Jul 2014, 11:34 AM edit delete reply
I'm confused too. I'm under the impression that Upper Crust's identity is also false, and Fancy Pants is subtly pointing that out to Rarity?
kriss1989 19th Jul 2014, 3:48 PM edit delete reply
So I was right about Fancy NOT being a criminal. And now Rarity is floored. Fleur might be a member, but Fancy is apparently legit and Rarity was not ready for that.
Quade 19th Jul 2014, 6:37 PM edit delete reply
We dont even know if Fleur is a member, she might be a spy working as a counter agent to the thieves guild, for all we know she could be working for the same agency as the pony Rarity has just been introduced too.
silvadel 19th Jul 2014, 8:45 PM edit delete reply
That is when you roll a 1 and go directly to jail.
Digo 21st Jul 2014, 6:37 AM edit delete reply
Do not pass Go, do not collect 200 Exp?
Kinrah 19th Jul 2014, 11:45 PM edit delete reply
Clearly, Fancy is just seeing how Rarity performs under unexpected pressure. No hoof-holding here; he's thrown her in at the deep end and she'll have to sink or swim.
kriss1989 20th Jul 2014, 5:40 AM edit delete reply
And I'm of the opinion that Fancy s legitimate, so we'll have to wait and see who's right in the end.
Firedon 20th Jul 2014, 11:11 AM edit delete reply
If he is not a criminal, then he might actually be trying to recruit her. After all, if you have the option of getting someone who's skills are as good as or better than those of your own organisation, it'd be foolish not to take the chance. (Well, apart from the loyalty question)
Draxynnic 26th Jul 2014, 8:45 AM edit delete reply
A bit behind the 8-ball here, but it could even be Fancy knows EXACTLY who Rarity is... and figures that an Element of Harmony should be possible to persuade to turn on the Thieves' Guild and help bring it down from the inside.
Siccarus 21st Jul 2014, 7:48 AM edit delete reply
This could be a test to see how she keeps her identity under pressure. In fact Upper crust could be a crooked cop for all we know.