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Interpretations of Book Rules

#1
These here are NOT house rules, they are interpretations of existing rules in the books, clarifications, finer points, etc.
I see a growing level of people mis-reading entries, which is to be understood with white wolf, so here I'll put Clarifications.

Resources Background:
The single most misunderstood stat around. People read it and miss the whole point of it. Most commonly they miss how RICH someone with Resources 4 is, which I believe comes from misunderstanding the difference between "money" and "resources". I shall endeavor to explain.

  1. As with any stat, 2 is the standard average. So a Resources 2 person is not poor, he is comfortably middle-class. He is in the 5th or 6th economic Decile.
  2. Understand that this is a relative term. Resources 2 is "average", so it would mean something entirely different in Kenya or in Florida. In US terms this means he owns a car and can afford it with little trouble, he has some health insurance, he may have some debt (as common in the US as the common cold), but nothing crushing, he can easily pay rent, utilities, bills, but not much is left after that. The occasional dinner out is fine, but he mostly eat in-doors home cooked. He can afford to invite friends over, but nothing lavish. He is, in the middle of it. And despite what CNN says, this is not half bad as it sounds. As the economy grows, so does his personal economy. With 70% home-ownership rate in the US, he probably owns his own home, unless he lives somewhere very expensive (NYC, LA, Boston, etc.). In Strake he most definitely owns at least a big apartment, if not a small home with a little yard.
  3. Again, the book is very very explicit: "Resources 1: "Slightly ahead of the game: You’ve got a small apartment and perhaps a cheap vehicle. By local standards, a working-class income." So even with Resources 1 you probably own your own 2-rooms apartment AND a car.
  4. Like all stats, this is an exponential up-curve. Resources 3 is more than double as rich as resources 2.
  5. Resources 4 is rich. It's not insanely, Forbes-magazine level, rich, but it is above middle class. From the book: "You own a large house, some property, and at least two vehicles, as well as notable levels of savings and investments. By local standards, you’re a millionaire.
    Now here's where I see the most confusion, so quick tour to economic terms: Being a millionaire does not mean having assets totaling a million dollar. Being a millionaire means being able to liquidate at least several millions of dollars, without dropping bellow middle class. That means that in addition to owning your own large house, several cars, maybe a time sharing condo or two, you ALSO own a revenue-generating assets: several rented apartments/houses, stakes in a big company, maybe even an international business. You are comfortably within the top 2 deciles of the economy, and despite everything, in the US this is still A LOT.
  6. Money gets very large very fast at the top, and the pie gets very big and the stage very crowd. By the time you hit Resources 5 you belong in the unjustly notorious "1%". In the US this means you are part of the "Capitalist Class" which means, in non-economists term, your total assets, if liquidated, can sustain a middle-class level of living, to your entire household, for the rest of your life. Think a minute how much money that is. Now think about it: yes, there are 5 more levels of resources.
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#2
The Avatar Storm

Known as the Soul storm, Dja-akh, Dimensional Anomaly and dreamspeakers' headache, The Avatar Storm is that event that racks the spirit world, broke down Stygia and countless mage chantries and viciously slaps any mage to try stepping sideways. Here we work on the assumption that it is very much raging still, and here is a small breakdown when it applies:

For Shifters, Spirits, Mummies... etc, any of the other spirit world delvers, it does not apply. It is more of a plot point than a mechanic.

For Mages with the spirit sphere, the storm applies damage whenever they "reach across the gauntlet" though the entire spirit sphere does that, so others could slap you whenever you even just tried to use spirit sight, but here we will stick with a more logical and friendly application.

So, whenever you step sideways, or do an action that has you directly reach across the gauntlet, you would take damage from the avatar storm, which is you rolling your permanent paradox + arete score.

In cases where you interact with a spiritual entity or in some way to not reach across the gauntlet, you do not.

Scenario 1: Stepping sideways into the umbra - no question, you take damage unless you have something to say otherwise

Scenario 2: Interacting with spirit in near umbra - technically, you would reach across the gauntlet, but the spirit is more there than not, so you do not take storm damage (this is also to enable talking with wraiths without needing a healer)

Scenario 3: Summoning a spirit - If more of an invitation that they can refuse, such an action is on your side of the field. If one they cannot, this is you reaching across and yanking them to you, so you take damage on it

Scenario 4: Making a Fetish or binding a familiar - In such cases the spirit should already be at hand, so the process itself does not make you take damage. Getting it, tho...

As always, such cases might be at ST discretion, and if you don't know... ask, and never start with an assumption.
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