Scion 2E: What We Know

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Contents

General comments

So does this mean we need to get Scion: Origin as well as Scion: Hero to play the game? (Shining Dragon)

Yes, but they'll be complete settings in their own right, even if they're not complete rulesets. Ideally, Hero will be both a full mode of play and the first third of a heroic cycle, and a discussion on how your life changes when your blood turns to ichor. Demigod will build on that foundation, but will also be a full game in its own right. Our goal is to clean, build and expand upon the experience of the first edition of Scion, with Origin underlying the entirety of the line and providing a setting and mechanical backbone so we don't have to explain it all in Hero.

Origin

We're still largely deciding what goes into Origin and what goes into Hero, but the idea is that the bare bones of the mechanical system will be laid out in Origin. The book can be used to create and play urban fantasy stories, and will include the setting(s) for doing just that. If creatures are handled in the book, they'll be beings of myth but low Legend - dryads, satyrs, and the like. And, yes, pre-Visitation Scions, but also holy men and women of the pantheons, sorcerers who seek to steal the power of the gods, and those bound by Fate (your Oedipuses, your Cassandras, your Arjunas). Some of its mechanics will include not just the baseline rules, but also rules for things that cross over and access all three tiers of play - magic and Fate among them.

Hero

Hero will include rules on taking characters from the SCR and giving them their first dot of Legend, with all the powers and Purviews that come with that. Not having to cram a full rule-set into this book means that we've got more space in which to play with things, including a nice, fat variety of powers, and other elements that are Hero-specific.

This is also where you'll see the full mechanical concept of our scaling system, which affects all four books. Moo hoo hah hah!

It also means that we've got space for a big catalog of pantheons, since the basics have been covered in Origin. The original six are returning (though we're talking about heavily changing the Loa), going into more depth than Hero 1e did. I'll ask him if we can spoil the rest (since we're talking about more). Ideally, Joe would like to touch on multiple other pantheons per book.

Demigod

Demigod will include rules for bringing our heroes into the Divine tier, including the ability to Invoke their...well, that'd be spoiling too much. Suffice it to say what we're talking about includes stuff on how pantheons are formed, what pantheons actually are, and an exegesis of stuff like interpretatio romana. It's definitely going to contain rules for play in mid-to-high Myth locales, such as Touchstones, Terra Incognita and the like, as well as Underworlds; and, of course, demigod powers.

God

Rules for bringing our heroes into the Empyrean tier, with all the power and responsibilities that assumes. More material for play in high-Myth locales, particularly Titan-Realms and Firmaments. And, yes, rules to shake the cosmos and the foundations of Fate. (Neall) [1]


So they're completely rebooting the Game & System? Also will we be able to use stuff from the Scion Companion of the prior edition ( well the basic fluff info) in some of the Sidebars ect as well as the gods--- to augment this new edition? (Songtress)

Yes and no, respectively. Game and system are being completely rewritten. One of our goals (bolded up in top of our design docs, repeated at every design meeting) is to ensure the good experiences people loved in Scion 1.0 still have a major place in 2.0. You won't be able to use artifacts or gods-as-written, though you could absolutely convert things over, and some of the design decisions that the previous authors made will be carried forward. (Neall) [2]


What are the odds of an Abrahamic Pantheon? (Egg)

Hotly debated. (Neall)

EDIT: I will say that I hope satyrs, drayds, elves and dwarves aren't playable "races". Scion should be about Scions. (Telgar)

Like I said, the focus is on replicating the experience - but then, things are still in flux at this stage, and it's never wise to close a door too firmly when you might need to walk through it later. Exalted was about the Exalted, but God-Blooded, Heroic Ghosts, Dragon-Kings - they're fan favorites, and they even made an appearance in the 2e corebook. Dryads and nymphs and elementals and kami were the children of the gods, too. Aren't they scions by another name? (Neall) [3]


I'd like to not have to cobble together mechanics with shoelaces and dreams. (griffinguy24)

Really, aren't they all?

You won't, though. A tight system is a big focus point for us. (Neall)

I'm happy the core six are returning (particularly the Aztecs, and especially that the Loa are being overhauled). Any ballpark estimates to the number of pantheons we might get? I really want me some Inca (griffinguy24)

I could give you a ballpark estimate, but I'm not going to, lest Joe maul me. I will say that the additional (new, rather than Companion) pantheons we're batting around for inclusion are all over the globe in terms of locations. (Neall) [4]


Are there any plans for books beyond the core four, or is that still in flux? (marin)

Not yet, but the opposite isn't true either. Scion 1E was designed as a limited run. Scion 2E isn't, it's just that we're still writing the first book, let alone thinking about what happens after the fourth. (Dave Brookshaw) [5]


[...]I will say this, though: "Hero" is going to include ten full pantheons, and my goal is to have a handful more each in both "Demigod" and "God". That may fall by the wayside, depending on the needs of the books themselves, but I like a world full of possibilities, and I think that's a great way to start. (Joe Carriker) [6]


Current plan for Demigod is to have mechanics on how pantheons are formed or re-formed (interpretatio romana). Kind of stands to reason that PCs could take advantage of those. (Neall) [7]


Okay, that's what I thought. My friend asked and I said no, and he wondered if that meant there was constant media coverage on the activities of the Godborn or whatever. I figured there was cause of the Heku power that gives them legend when people talk about them (Egg)

It's going to change in the settings of Scion 2e.

As of first edition, it's heavily implied that your band's exploits are becoming world-famous. Legendary! (Neall) [8]


Can you share any thoughts you have on Fate and Fatebinding? (Scutarii)

Because the mechanics behind Fatebinding are really closely tied to the new systems we're playing with and how they function, I want to hold off talking about the mechanics thereof for the moment. I will say, however, that our aim is to re-empower Fatebinding. It's such a cool concept, but mechanically it almost never comes up in the early stages of Scion 1e. I will also say that the intention is to put the power of its invocation into the hands of the player (though not the character, per se), so that who and what the character becomes Fatebound to help build the player's idea of his character's progress towards godhood. (Joe Carriker)

[...]On the other hand, can you tell us anything about the general guide lines that are defining Scion 2? Like what is the relevance of Fate (narrative tool vs. mechanic tool)? How do you intend to convey the feeling of playing a God (are Epics and their crazy success scale still a thing)? Any change to the Metaphysics of the game (concerning places like Underworlds, Godrealms, Titanrealms, the influence of the Parent God and Pantheon....)? Are we going to be able to take what was given for Scion 1 and transfer it to Scion 2 (assuming that players will reach Demigod and God stages before the actual books cover it)? (Man in Black)

We are fairly dramatically changing the system. In point of fact, it's safe to say that it's a new system that is deeply inspired by (and includes certain Sacred Cows) of the old systems that provided the foundations for Scion 1e. To address your individual questions, though: Fate is very relevant (see answer above). We are extremely cognizant of creating a system that scales well, first and foremost, without going into a realm of basically non-playable-ness.

As far as the cosmology of the setting, we will be playing with its concepts a bit - I find the old system a bit too homogenous. In order to fit some of the mythological locales into the first edition, we kind of had to crowbar some of them into Overworld or Underworld concepts, to their detriment (Guinee comes to mind immediately). I'd like to be a bit more respectful of the original cultures and bodies of myth in our movement forward, while still maintaining a playable game in which it is possible for those myths to all be simultaneously true (even if its only in a potent, Legend-infused mythological way).

Part of our intentions with this edition is to give everything a good going-over. We've got a lot more room in the books to do this with, as we're excising the use of super long "front of book" fiction, and putting all of our core rules into the Scion: Origins core book. (Joe Carriker)

If I'm expecting a variation on the ST system core and I get something that's pretty different even if I can see the ST influence, it will negatively prejudice my enjoyment of Scion. Which would suck. (Heavy Arms)

Expect something recognizeable at its baseline (it uses d10s in a pool, against a Target Number, character sheets covered in dots). We're being careful to avoid change for change's sake; that said, it is a new system. Its intentions are different, on some level, and it is intended to do different things (specifically, many of the core details are in place to allow a relatively smooth scaling from "dude with gun and badge" all the way to "GOD OF JUSTICE"). My goal with this system is simple: I want people to be able to take elements that are familiar to them from our previous edition and related games, and use them in a system that explicitly supports the kind of stories this system is intended to tell. That's going to mean some change, but I have a lot of faith in the folks doing the work on this system. I do hope that folks can set aside expectations and interact with the system as it is, rather than as they expect it to be. Let's be honest - having to somehow intuit the expectations of our fan-base when they hear the words "Scion Second Edition" is a bit above my paygrade.

You will recognize a lot. Your dice pools are Attributes + Skills. You have a Legend stat. You have Virtues. There are Purviews. There are Boons. But every single one of these elements works a bit differently. We've changed up some of the names of those Traits, so that people don't make assumptions from previous editions about how they work. There are also some slick new mechanics that complement and enhance all of these things as well. (Joe Carriker)

Sort of a mix, from what I've picked up. There'll be a core of setting-agnostic stuff, and then multiple settings to choose from (at least four, from what Joe's said elsewhere). (marin)

That is correct, yes. I like the sort of "foggy setting" of Scion 1e. It let me build the settings of my own games in such a way that they were very different things in their execution.

That said, I also recognize that frankly not everyone has the time to do both setting-building *and* prepare for a game. Not these days. So we're also providing a handful of settings in the Scion: Hero book, *as well as* some in the Scion: Origins book, all intended to introduce places for players to romp around in with their characters created using those books. Without committing to doing so, if folks like any of these settings well enough, we may very well do future PDFs that further detail them, or PDFs with a couple of new settings as well. That kind of thing.

Scion Second Edition is basically intended to be a "myth engine", and we want some cool worlds in which to set those myths. So that's what we're doing with it. :) (Joe Carriker) [9]


Pantheons are comprised of gods and demigods (and culture heroes who exist on the hero level, but they don't do much, metaphysically speaking). When I mentioned them forming, I didn't mean to imply you, Jane Hero Smith, weren't part of a pantheon on the Hero level - you are. Demigod addresses how pantheons form as social as magical constructs within Fate, but you benefit from those constructs at every level, Origin included. (Neall) [10]


10 Pantheons in one Book, wow thats nice ! So the 6 starter are included and the other 4? Are they the Companion ones and Yazata or do we get something different? (DeadGuy)

The original six pantheons (altered a bit, though) plus four more. (Neall) [11]


Interpretatio is going to be a thing in 2e. It's something all of the writers are keenly aware of, so we're taking that into account while designing the cosmology. As for PSPs, well. Those have changed a lot already. It's not fair or accurate to describe pantheon membership as a social club with fringe metaphysical benefits...but I wouldn't say it's fair to describe them as permanent mystical bloodlines anymore, either. (Neall) [12]


Seriously, you guys. It feels like every thread on Scion ever ends up talking about the damned WWII and Atlantean pantheons. If I were to go through this thread - which was NOT talking about those topics - and excised those posts, I'd shrink it down to at least 50% of its current size.

I will say this - Scion has a focus, and that's my primary goal. But I'm sorry, I don't understand the gamer mentality that says a line ought never publish options that they themselves will never use. So no, I'm not making any promises not to revisit some of those concepts in the future. Grouse all you like about "wasted word count" or whatever you like, the fact is I intend to make of this system a broad, useful system for the telling of some great stories about heroes whose power derives from ancient legend, using that power to forge their own myths for the next age.

I guarantee you that I'll put something in these books you hate. I guarantee that because we're going to put a LOT of stuff in them, over the lifespan of this line, because its potential is broad as well as deep. (Joe Carriker) [13]


Hello, all. Just wanted to drop in with some slightly more solid information on Scion: Origins, though Neall has graciously touched base on some of this.

I've got several goals with this book. This stuff is from my outline for the book, as an aside. ;)

Rules Book: First and foremost, I wanted a book where we can consolidate the majority of the system. Doing so gives us extra room in the Hero through God books for richer background material.

Pre-Visitation Scions: There's plenty of indication that Scions are just flat-out exceptional in many ways even before they receive that Visitation that brings them to awareness of their own semi-divine nature. For some folks, it's enough to just handwave and narrate away those sorts of stories, but if there is a motto I have as a developer, it is: "I like options." I love running prelude arcs, and know plenty of other folks do as well, so we'll be including some mechanics for these just-above-normal mortals, and give some guidelines for running Visitations and the like.

Followers: This is also where we're going to include the mechanics for presenting the various not-quite-divine sorts of characters that were often Birthrights in Scion1e: Amazons, satyrs, and that crew. These mechanics will provide stats for those characters to be used as NPCs or as player characters. We'll also be including some mechanics in Hero for granting these entities a full dot of Legend and "leveling them up" so that your Demigod can possibly have Hero-level cohorts and leave them in the dust once he transcends to demigodhood, or so players who want to play such a character in an otherwise Hero-level campaign may do so.

Mortals & the Fated: While the full rules for Fatebinding and the like are in Hero, Origins will be what you use to create those characters that become tied to your Scions. It's essentially a "mortals rulebook," with the options of adding some templates to them to turn them into supernatural creatures (though we aren't specifically using the "template" mechanic for this).

Sorcerers, Priests & Oracles: This book will also include rules for reflecting those mortals whose lives have been touched by Legend in some capacity. They might be occultists and spiritualists who are Getting It Right, they might be oracles and seers haunted by divine vision, they might be those who still render up worship in the Old Ways (or Current Ways for some!). These folks will also get some "level up" potential that follower/cohort-types do in Hero.

Antagonists: There were plenty of not-quite-Hero-scale antagonists in the original game, many of them supernatural gribblies: vampires, ghosts, werewolves. This is going to be where those get placed, as well - also not just as NPCs, and with the potential to "level up" to Hero-scale so you can have awesome ancient vampire lords, super-werewolves and whatnot.

Urban Fantasy: Because I don't like the idea of a core rulebook that just "serves" another sort of game entirely, we're also making this book a sort of "urban fantasy RPG," as it were. Inspired by stories as myriad as Butcher's Dresden to the works of Charles de Lint and everything inbetween (and beyond), we'd like this game to provide some inspiration for the sorts of stories you might tell about a world that has seen an upswing in Legend once more and how that affects normal folks.

So, yes. :) There you have it. (Joe Carriker) [14]


There is a plan for the new edition to more on religion as well as myth. I mean, people believed - and continue to believe! - this stuff. Blood was shed for it. The least we can do is acknowledge the difference between Jupiter Optimus Maximus and the King of Olympus (even if they both wield the three thunderbolts of Tinia, because they're the same dude). When I mentioned interpretatio, I meant it in the more general sense: how other cultures (and pantheons!) look at and interpret gods has an impact, if you consider that the mythology is partially driven by the acts of Gods and Fate. We're also talking about immortal, divine beings who exist over a continuum of thousands of years. People wear a lot of hats in their mayfly lives; how many more so do the gods wear, then? (Neall) [15]


My main question is whether it will go with 1E's expectation that the children of gods are basically carbon-copy expies of their divine parents, complete with cutesy Edward Nigma style names, or if it will default to something much more like actual mythology, where most of the time the children of gods had completely different bailiwicks than their parents. (Topher)

The second. Yours truly designed the prototype Legend rules with "you can see the relationship from Zeus to Ares to Eris, but they're not clones of one other" firmly in mind. (Dave Brookshaw) [16]


Dave Brookshaw has mentioned elsewhere that he's prototyped the new Legend system wherein you can see a familial line of descent from Zeus to Ares to Eros, but the Scion is hardly a clone of the God. (Solarious)

I don't know if I'm okay to describe it in more detail, but Scions and Gods are treated the same way. Your Origin (whether it's "God-born son of Nyx and Chronos", "God-born daughter sprung from the brow of Zeus", "Scion born of Ares and a mortal", or "Scion adopted by Aphrodite") influences but does not completely determine your powers. It's one ingredient. (Dave Brookshaw) [17]


Mithra has just a valid claim on being in the Roman pantheon as he does in the Persian/Zoroastrian one. Guanyin would likely be accepted by both Japan and China. Just saying: membership in one pantheon doesn't necessarily preclude membership in another. (Neall) [18]


(discussing the system)
There's a great deal of complexity in what we're doing. [...] Scions themselves encompass three distinct tiers of power; we think of that when we consider their miracles too, which work far differently than the Gifts of [the Trinity Continuum's] Talents. Each pantheon has to work faithfully according to their myth, and believe me when I say it's a headache to ponder. But Scions needn't be balanced against Aberrants, and we have teams working on both games. It's apples and oranges; just because Exalted's bigger doesn't mean it's more complex, and all three games are gigantic. They're on different systems, as you'll (hopefully) see soon. (Neall) [19]


I'm kind of hoping, as far as combat goes, that the Trinity and Scion writers are looking at Ex3 a bit. The combat previews for Ex3 have a very good idea regarding meshing the horror genre origins of the ST system with a more cinematic action genre feel. Basically most combat actions are about gaining "momentum" or causing opponents to lose it. When you feel you have a big enough gap in momentum, you get to go for big fight ending hits, and if you're right you probably end the fight. But if you're wrong it could result in a reversal. (Heavy Arms)

We have not. The new system's development is running concurrently with Exalted's, though they have something of a head start. And, hey, different systems: even if we were to look at it, there isn't much we could adopt without heavy modification. Additionally, we have a number of base assumptions different from Storyteller.

On the other hand, some of the elements that have been revealed, such as Charms working as extensions of your skill, seem to be along the same lines as things we're doing (though ours is a function of the dice mechanic and how actions work, and I don't know how Charms work in the new system). (Neall)


(on having a metagame resource for PCs to cheat the odds when in-genre)
As far as Dataweaver's point, I'd love to see Adventure!'s Inspiration/Dramatic Editing rules fill that role (though, biased, Adventure! is my favorite of the line). That is its entire purpose, and it doesn't seem that hard to make it integral to the whole game line. (Heavy Arms)

Dramatic Editing has a pretty explicit role in both Trinity and Scion, and is a core mechanic as such. (Neall) [20]


- Scion and Trinity use the same system. Attribute + Ability, d10s. It's based off a modern action system, though it has to scale from man on the street to god in the sky. Dice pools always represent what you're doing, but their Goals and what the roll represents may vary wildly depending on who and what you are.
- Purviews are somewhat reminiscent of Professional Training from God-Machine and Backgrounds, but more holistic and deeply integrated within the system. They're what you are - a cop, a soldier, a writer, an investigator, a therianthrope, a kami. They allow you to access resources thematically and reasonably appropriate to the character, and provide distinct benefits (which can be broad or specific, depending on how specific the Purview gets). The book covers very broad Purviews, but specific ones tailored to an organization aren't out of the question, and GMs are encouraged to create their own - we provide them as template examples, not shackles. Supernatural Purviews also scale upwards, granting access to powers reasonably appropriate to the power set.
- There are three individual scaling mechanisms - Tiers (and no, I didn't explain what they were), Attributes, (other thing). There's also an environmental scaling mechanism; DaveB likened it to Batman being street-level in his own comics while still fighting cosmic aliens with the Justice League. In some settings, a god may be all-powerful in their Godrealm but "merely" a strong and capable mortal in the place furthest divorced from their themes.
- Legend has certain themes according to the dot rating, which may be "mantled" by the god to produce certain divine attributes and power sets. These are acquired by a system of heroic deeds (both in actual play or in an outright character generation). If you're play a Scion, your first dot is always, "Scion of X, God of Y," which allows you to adopt a lesser set of powers of your parent's most famous mantle. While parentage is clear and may even trace back generations through the Legend system, Scions needn't (and, in fact, it's hard for them) be clones of their parents. Certain relics may be Legend dots, meaning you can't mantle those powers without them.
- Zeus, Jupiter and Tinia are all the same god, but that god may be mantling different dots of Legend.
- Pantheons are magical constructs within Fate; gods may belong to one or more pantheons. Pantheons are no longer divine bloodlines. Hero talks about what happens to dead gods and shattered pantheons.

I wish I could talk more about the ten pantheons in Hero (though the core six are back, the Loa are a major subset of the Yoruba), the setting(s) and the fact that you don't have to play a Scion or a mortal, but sadly nobody asked about those. (Neall) [21]


We've just gotten rid of specifically Mega-Attributes [from Aberrant], same way Scion got rid of Epic Attributes. We've just got different ways to model the fact that you can lift a VW Beetle over your head and shotput it over a skyscraper, that's all. (Neall) [22]


The point I'm trying to make is that I really hope [mantling] isn't used to make a single "Mayincatec" group of gods. We've got plenty of that across pop culture, we don't need another entry for the list... (griffinguy24)

Quetzacoatl, Kukulcan, and Gukumatz are good examples of what I'm talking about; I'll include them with the three slightly-better-known Etruscan-Greco-Roman gods who are the same god.

The Aztec, Incan and Mayan pantheons are well-known to be very different. The Titans themselves have also changed (and aren't necessarily present in all settings anyways).

I know you've got a personal stake in this, so take my reassurance that we've done our homework on American pantheons of all stripes and locales, North and South. When we say the Aztec pantheon is returning for the Hero core, we do mean the actual Aztecs, not a less diverse Mesoamerican one. If Huracan doesn't like an Aztec Scion, it's because he thinks Mexico City doesn't deserve the title of tollan and is sore about Chichen Itza (that is an off-the-cuff example; I'm not writing those pantheons). Keep in mind, though, that our foremost goal is a playable and enjoyable mythological game allowing players to embody the myths of legend, wear divine mantles of succession and create their own myths in the vein of old in the modern day whilst being a badass, not arguing about who's God K and who isn't. Accuracy and respect are still very high priorities. But if we're looking at Lugh of the Tuatha de Dannen and see the Welsh Lleu Llaw Gyffes and Lugus of the Gauls, there's a judgment call to be made.

As for Tohil, Tezcatlipoca and Huracan all having something to do with leadership and a screwy leg, see my comment before re: Zeus, Indra, and Perun not being the same god but occupying a similar role and possessing some similar characteristics.

Hope that's a bit reassuring. (Neall) [23]


In Scion, Gods are not created, sustained or fueled by belief or sacrifice, with the exception of the Aztecs, who can gain additional Legend from blood rituals performed by their followers using a single PSP Boon. (Telgar)

Sacrifice is being adopted a bit more wholesale as an all-pantheon mechanic.

Gods aren't created by worship or ideals, no, but there are reasons they want cults and followers, as we'll talk about in Origins and Hero. (Neall) [24]


So, the animal-headed gods of the Pesdajet is basically divine theiranthropes. Interesting. (JackalopeVegas)

That will definitely be one (potentially quite fun) way of playing them, yes. Part of my goal is to not be too definitive when it comes to the origins of the entities we're calling Gods in Scions. We will definitely make mentions of what mortal cultures say are their origins, hearkening back to real-world mythology, but we're not going to lay any absolutes on them. That's for the campaign type and the one running the game to decide on, in finality. (Joe Carriker) [25]


(on the new system)
I'm particularly enthused with how we're dealing with the concept of momentum and heroic comebacks. Also, the way we're integrating backgrounds and setting hooks together. I think it'll really serve both Scion and Trinity greatly.

Finally, I'm pretty happy with how scaling is shaping up. (Neall) [26]


There’s a few different ways we’re doing power scaling, from superhuman Attribute traits, to abilities that greatly increase your might depending on condition, to environmental/global scaling (Neall) [27]


The incredible beauty and just correctness of the original three covers is why we’re retaining them for those books and got the fourth cover illo to match them. They are just right for the game books! (Rich Thomas) [28]


First, I’d like to see the Voodoo Pantheon replaced by one or two of the West African Pantheons from which Voodoo is derived, under the premise that Voodoo is a human-founded religion based on said West African Pantheons. (Dataweaver)

I'm just going to go ahead and confirm that we're really looking to integrate Yoruba and the Loa in 2e as a prime example of a how a pantheon reacts to socio-political changes in the World (the Diaspora) and what an "old guard" versus a "new guard" looks like within a pantheon (and how a new guard tends to interact more with Scions or Gods from other pantheons).

Also, by extension, 2e's "core" pantheons are commentary on how pantheons function in the World, providing GMs with guidelines on how to create their own. (Neall) [29]


I’d like to get Gaulish...Pantheons; but given the lack of solid information on these, they’d end up qualifying as fictional Pantheons and thus outside the scope of this thread. (Dataweaver)

Personally? I'd love to do a Gaulish pantheon as a prime example of a "dead" or destroyed pantheon as a potential Kickstarter goal or further PDF/POD book down the line. They got completely annihilated by a militant Scion of Venus. What strange strands does Fate weave for the dead...? When you walk in the footsteps of dead gods, do they then walk like you? (Neall) [30]


So long as you put in the caveat that you are essentially making almost the entire thing up, that it's an exercise in reconstruction akin to finding a burned down house in the woods and building something on the foundations that includes pretty much everything left architecturally, but that you are doing it without anything like photograph.

It just needs to be telegraphed as such. (Ajax)

Why?

I mean, given that there will be a caveat in the front of the book warning students from using Scion for their myth and religious studies homework.

To quote something I wrote earlier:

Keep in mind, though, that our foremost goal is a playable and enjoyable mythological game allowing players to embody the myths of legend, wear divine mantles of succession and create their own myths in the vein of old in the modern day whilst being a badass, not arguing about who's God K and who isn't. Accuracy and respect are still very high priorities. But if we're looking at Lugh of the Tuatha de Dannen and see the Welsh Lleu Llaw Gyffes and Lugus of the Gauls, there's a judgment call to be made.
(Neall) [31]


I think the idea is to distinguish the theoretical pseudo-Gaul pantheon from how the others are altered, in the sense that, for example, the Lugh example you give in your quote is because you have too much to work with, while the Pseudo-Gauls would have far too little, and thus is noteworthy in its reconstructedness. Sorry if I got anything wrong, Mr or Ms Ajax. (ZealousChristian24)

In that sense, the Gauls would be noteworthy, but as Ajax noted that's actually something of a bonus to us writers, in that we've got a bit more freedom to work with. Myths, legends, folktales, and yes, fantastical reconstructions all have a place in Scion and the modern myths PCs play through. (Neall) [32]


Evangeline Walton threw in a very short Appendix highlighting the changes she made or when she made things up. It didn't detract from the books at all. (Ajax)

Mm, you know, that topic could make for a few good blog posts. I'll keep it under my hat. Thanks! (Neall) [33]


The overall move of 2e is away from Pantheons being clans, in the Vampire sense, to metaphysical and cultural lineages within Fate. They're not necessarily exclusive, either - Isis and Hermes really get around, mythologically speaking, and there's the interpretatio phenomenon. (Neall) [34]


Q: Speaking of [Beast: the Primordial]. I was discussing it with my beloved and it struck us both that the concept (with tweaks of course) would really feel QUITE at home in Scion. Playing the Kraken in a Scion game? Oh hell, yeah! We were curious to know if it had been considered. Was there a moment when you had to chose in which game line it would go? (Yiodan)

A: Generally, our focus is on specific pitches for specific lines, but in fact, the discussions that led to Beast did actually lead to a new set of ideas for Scion in a sort of Eureka! moment. But more on that when we get to full-blown Scion talk later this year. (Rich Thomas)

A: An inspiration’s existence in some form or another in one game line doesn’t necessarily preclude an existence in another. A mythic beast can be just at home in Scion as it might well be in Beast. You might see a doomed seat of kings in one game while the actual Siege Perilous shows up in Scion, for example. (Neall) [35]


Or wait until the new Scion system is out and try that one out. Just run something else in the interim. We're doing that right now in my group waiting for [Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition]. It sucks, but it is giving me loads of time to work on the next game and we are having fun playing something that we normally wouldn't (Vampire).

Honestly, I'd just TRY Scion, either RAW (that's mostly he way I ran the first one + of my Scion games) or with some of the fixes in place up front. But I can be relatively impatient. (Ajax)

There's a bit of the Mage powerset that's really informing the development of Scion2e, and four members of Team Mage(s) are on Team Scion, so I think the concepts will translate well for your group. (Neall) [36]

Q: [...]I'm assuming that “Team Mage” refers to Mage: the Awakening, as opposed to Mage: the Ascension?[...] (Dataweaver)

A: For the most part, though two members of the latter are now on Team Scion as well. (Neall) [37]


Remember, aside from a few off hand and as out of place as Hardness comments, Scion doesn't connect human worship up with empowering gods. (YAY!) In fact, at best, mortals make gods "itchy" when they start affecting them through individual and mass Fatebindings. (Ajax)

Not in 1e, and not in the base setting of 2e, no.

Although it's worth noting that Fatebindings and perception can slightly alter a god's characteristics or inadvertently lock them into a mode of behavior, which is a reason the gods shy away from interacting with mortals. (Neall) [38]


(discussing providing official guidelines on pantheon building) Considering that White Wolf/Onyx Path have never, not once, been able to provide consistent guidelines to create anything, not even characters (Telgar)

Literally every corebook has character creation rules, Telgar. If you don't think we can do it, wait until the Kickstarter and decide for yourself. Or Gen Con, where we'll be talking about all the pantheons.

I will say that the ten planned pantheons for Hero are core or Companion pantheons from the prior edition, save one new one that was mentioned on the first page of this thread. The other planned ten for God and Demigod have also been mentioned in this thread, and three more have been brought up as part of the stretch goals we've floated as potentials. So...we're on the right track, I suppose. (Neall) [39]


I'd go bigger, dedicating a whole supplement to Lost Pantheons (i.e., Pantheons that pretty much have to be fictional because there's not enough there to do something that isn't). Each would have its own in-setting reason why they're rarely seen or even known within the setting. At the very least, I'd put the Gauls and the Arabians in there. (Dataweaver)

It's certainly an idea. I like the Gauls being a core-ish pantheon as the typical example of a dead pantheon, but we'll see. (Neall) [40]


Q: Is Sardonyx still basically Storyteller based (dice pool of d10s, count successes, Attribute + Ability) or something more different? (goldfaction)

A: Yes, although we also differentiate degrees of success, and have an interesting failure mechanic. (Neall) [41]


I don't think any reasonable person expects a doctoral thesis in cultural studies or every single mythological story ever. That said, Much of what actually goes into the book affects the default stance of how people play and interpret the game. A sidebar suggesting that the game writeups are just a taste and that people who want more info can read the actual real world stories would be greatly helpful. (Úlfhéðnar)

The plan is to have a reading list for each pantheon alongside a more general one. (Neall)

Its probably unfair to assume you guys are going to screw up and be offensive to other religions and cultures and even flatout factually incorrect, but im sure you can see why people are concerned considering how the first book came out. Things like the Aztecs being treated canonically as a strange Religion of Evil where being an Aztec Traditionalist (A choice supported by the game mechanics even) is "Bad" or completely inaccurate things like Thor being good friends with the Dwarves despite mythologically despising them to the point of casual murder. (Úlfhéðnar)

Poor Alvíss!

I will say that if we change things from the myths, I'd vastly prefer it to be because the game needs it to be changed rather than because the research wasn't done.

[...]Put another way, we care more about respect and authenticity for the myths than we do about strict adherence to accuracy. (Neall)

I would suggest that if the writers don't understand the traditions/myths of a culture then you A) Find someone who does, or B) Not include them. (Úlfhéðnar)

I won't disagree. (Neall) [42]


I would like to see a Roman Pantheon.

I know a lot of people would say "There's already the Greek one, they're the same thing". No, they're not. (wulf)

There will be some Roman-only Gods, along with Greek-only and maybe one or two Etruscan-only Gods. It depends on how much room we can get for the Theoi. (Neall)

[...]

In all seriousness, I would love to see rules for different aspects of gods (here used to say different takes on them), so I could have the PCs meet both Lugh and Lleu in a campaign. Possibly guidelines for when it's just going under different names (Odin/Wodin) and when it is a different aspect (Zeus/Jupiter). This should allow one pantheon to cover two or three closely related ones, stopping pantheon bloat. (TwoDSix)

It's a fruitful path of setting design, but one that needs to be walked cautiously, lest you accidentally swallow up gods with similar characteristics (like Taranis and Zeus or Taranis and Thor) or who are culturally very different yet have a potentially similar origin (Mitra and Mithra). (Neall) [43]


(during a discussion on the lack of similarity between the Irish and Welsh pantheons despite name similarities)
I might have to write Lugh [Samildanach, of the Irish pantheon] and Lleu [Llaw Gyffes, of the Welsh pantheon] as having a friendly but vitriolic rivalry because people keep getting their names and deeds confused. (Neall) [44]


Q: Are Trinity and Scion going to handle basic/core resolutions and mechanics differently? Or will the system differences all be additive, as in the unique mechanics for each system are extra mechanics not replacing core mechanics. I only ask because it would be kinda cool if both game lines could pass back and forth shared elements like feats and merits when appropriate, also who doesn't want to try a Scion/Trinity crossover game. (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: the system differences will be additive. (Dave Brookshaw)[45]

A: As Dave says, the core mechanics will be the same. Parts of the power-tier scaling are built into the core mechanics, for example, and Attributes, Skills, Merit-equivalents, and so on function the same across games. Some subsystems (like combat) are the same, but Merits and powers and some other things will likely make them feel very different.

Crossing over will probably present challenges, but on a numbers-and-resolution level, it should be workable. (Rose Bailey) [46]


Q: Would mixing Scion and Trinity be a little bit like mixing Vampire and Demon, or a bit more complex? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: Probably only a little harder than that, but I'll honestly need to see all of how Trinity powers work before I can answer. (Rose Bailey) [47]


It might interest you to know that the new Origins book cover signature character (the redhaired lady in the library, on the front page of the main Scion site) is a Scion of The Dagda. (Neall) [48]


Would she be counted as being both a Loa and a Tuatha or would Maman Brigitte and Brigid be two different deities? (Anteros)
Mantles of the same deity, I would think/hope/argue. She's very well-traveled. :) (Morimaruvik)

I haven't discussed it with the Yoruba writer, but deities can indeed be in multiple pantheons, so I suppose it's not out of the realm of possibility. (Neall) [49]


[Virtues are] no longer entirely hardwired to pantheon, as pantheon can be a fluid thing at times and isn't fixed (though it's not softwired, either). (Neall) [50]


Even American Gods is about modern mythology clashing with the old ones. It's a setting where mythological figures do get their power, their very existence, from the stories, prayers and beliefs of humanity. So is The Iron Druid Chronicles. That's a really cool idea... but it isn't how the ancients ever thought of anything. Zeus didn't exist to the Athenians because they believed in him. He existed because he existed. He was real. If they stopped worshipping him he would smite them, not lose power. (Telgar)

There's a line to be drawn, but note that American Gods itself includes Buile Suibhne, kobolds, pixies and sprites. The line between mythology and folklore is blurry, not distinct. Scion 2e will sit pretty firmly on the mythological side, but don't be surprised if Baba Yaga rolls up (she even gets mentioned on a roll of Slavic gods, which goes to show you how indistinct the line can be). (Neall) [51]


Options for starting at every power level, pre-Visitation, Hero, Demigod and even God, would be nice. (Ajax)

You'll get them! (Eventually.) (Neall)

Conversion rules would also be nice. I know we've had several games fall apart when they hit Demigod (actually more like shattering when hitting a brick wall). It would be cool to be able to retrofit those characters into the new Demigod and pick up where we left off. (Ajax)

That, you won't get, though I think you'll be able to retrofit the characters without our guidance. If you kept track of your sessions with notes, I think you'll be able to rebuild the characters. (Neall) [52]


[...]Both Trinity Continuum and Scion are planned to release their first two core books (Trinity Continuum and Trinity Continuum: Aeon in the one case, and Scion: Origins and Scion: Hero in the other) to start, with additional books that build on those first two, and then their third core books (Trinity Continuum: Aberrant and Scion: Demigod)will come out anywhere from 9 months to 18 months later. We’re looking at Kickstarters for all of the lines in one way or another. (Rich Thomas) [53]


Q: Oh Neall, writer of the Gods! Tell us as much as you can about Lugh of the Tuatha dé Dannan and how he is the pure essence of awesomeness!!! (what? are you implying my main character is a Scion of Lugh? ... Hell yeah <shades>) Can you share with us his Purviews? Maybe a little spoiler about his mantles? Any special moment while writing about him that you'd be happy to share?

In truth, any little detail would do... and bigger chunks of information would be great! (Phersus)

Lugh Lámhfhada, a grand-Scion of Dian Cecht and god-born Scion of Cian and Ethniu, is definitely in the corebook, along with the rest of the Irish pantheon. The Origins signature character is actually a Scion of the Dagda, the Red Man of All Knowledge. Right now, the plan is for Lugh to have had a toe in the Gaulish pantheon before it was destroyed, and had especially good relationships with Taranis, Esus, and Toutatis. He may, or may not, be related to Lleu Llaw Gyffes, we haven't really decided yet - "a God named Lou who is strong with a bright hand" seems like a no-brainer, but a lot of their stories and relationships are completely different, so it may be more of a case of Taranis having a beard and thunderbolts. But, we're not even to first drafts yet.

The Welsh/Britannian pantheon is something else entirely. I really hope we get to cover all of Celtic and Brythonic myth, I really do. You should see druids, bards and vates in Origins.

Q: Ok a proper question, is it still the plan to use the 1e hero, demi-god, and god covers for the 2e books? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: Yes, and Origins has a fourth cover to match. (Neall) [54]


Q: Ohhh something I was wondering, in the Scion: Origins book...that's the mortal book right?...I'm assuming regular everyday people and pre-visitation scions will be covered in that book, are there any other "types" of mortals that will be covered by Origins? Like somebody whose grandfather was a faun, or comes from a linage of sorceresses? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: Descent from Legendary creatures is something I really want to have in there. (Neall) [55]


Q: Neall: You mention characters descended from mythic creatures other than Gods. Will it be possible to play those mythic creatures themselves? IE play one of the Alfar, or a giant that's switched from Dark Virtues. (Dean Shomshak)

A: That's the hope - satyrs get brought up as a favorite - though I don't think it'll be fully covered in Origins and Hero. I know that Percy Jackson has raised a few eyebrows around here, but a character like Grover Underwood, albeit with a far more mythic and classical overtone, is a PC - one who progresses from Greek to Roman depictions by "earning his horns and hooves". Alfar or sidhe descent should be possible, too.

Q: I've got a question, something that's been bugging me since Hero came out, actually. Will there be a full list of Merits/Backgrounds to help round out a character mechanically or will it still be left to the player to come up with narratively, and if so, will they be a separate thing from Birthrights or would Birthrights be a subset of Backgrounds/merits. (Gnomish American)

A: One of the things I think Scion 1e did well mechanically was cutting out what didn't fundamentally matter to the world; a strict Resources Background, for example, didn't actually matter for a story about the divine. If you were a jet-setting celebrity, you just were; if you were a god of the homeless, you just were. That said, one of the things Sardonyx does is provide almost Merit-like hooks for individual organizations and the world, something you can buy into to increase your story purchase in the setting (though it can also be increased narratively). Birthrights are still a mostly separate thing, though they're very intertwined.. (Neall) [56]


We've been told nine of the core/Companion pantheons are making it into Hero 2e, including all six of the original core. Neall's confirmed the Irish pantheon are making it in (the Origins cover sig character is a Scion of the Dagda), and I'd be pretty surprised if the Hindu and Chinese pantheons weren't the other two. (marin)

I'll just confirm that now, sure. The tenth and other book's pantheons will have to wait for Gen Con.

We've also got several stretch goal pantheons (though one of them isn't a true pantheon, but a collection of related gods). (Neall) [57]


Q: Will we see any younger Scions in the new edition? I'm trying to think if there have been any before but I am coming up blank. Scion highschool or summer camp could be pretty fun. (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: I don't think that's entirely the tone we want to go, but the new core does involve the possibility of alternate settings and changes in tone using the core mechanics. I don't see why you couldn't use the mechanics to play a Camp Half-Blood game, even if the setting proper doesn't entirely support it. (Neall)

Q: So aside from the Tuatha and the tenth pantheon, who're both getting new signature characters, what's happening with the sigs? Given the original covers are sticking around, that means the original Band will be coming back too, right? (marin)

A: The three cover sigs, at least. They were probably the most interesting characters of the signature Band, though obviously that's my opinion.

In terms of supplemental rules text and maybe a Ready-Made characters packet, sure.

In terms of a 30-page fiction in the corebook, no. (Neall) [58]


Q: How hard will it be to push the war between the Gods and the Titans into the background and just run it as a game of pulp urban fantasy with mythic heroes? (Wandering)

A: Very easy for Origins level games, more difficult for Hero. It helps that the Titanomachy is far more varied and "cold". (Neall)

[...]

Q: More generally, are there any spoilers you can provide about how Magic will work in Scion 2e? I know we're going to have sorcerers in Origin; and presumably magic will be tied to whatever mythology the practitioner subscribes to. But as I understand it, there are vast differences between the rune-based magic of the Norse people, Voodoo/Hoodoo/Santiera/etc., Egyptian mysticism, the Hermetic magic of Greek descent, Shinto priests, and Aztec blood magic, just to mention the most common magical practices associated with the original six Scion Pantheons — so much so that whole games can be (and have been) written about just one of them. How are you going to address this in Scion such that the magic rules only take up a portion of Scion Origin but still manage to capture the distinct flavors of these different belief systems? (Dataweaver)

A: The answer leans more towards "no" to your question, but pantheon magic favors pretty heavily into the pantheon-specific Purviews. (Neall) [59]


Q: How does gaining Legend work, is it bought with XP, given out by the GM, or something else? Because I remember that in 1e the power of higher level legend meant that anybody who didn't put every BP into it got left behind as the ones who did ascended to godhood very quickly, is this still the case or are different levels of Legend more balanced? (TwoDSix)

A: Experience expenditure is linear, but right now - and this is pre-alpha - Legend dots are decoupled from direct experience expenditure anyways. (Neall)

Q: Is the new Edition keeping the idea that belief does not empower or create deities? (Úlfhéðnar)

A: Create? No, belief doesn't create gods. Does it empower them? Probably not directly, or outside an alternate setting, though cults and followers will likely be playing a much bigger role. (Neall) [60]


Q: What kind of effort does it take to destroy a pantheon? (marin)

A: I'd say a lot, though obviously that depends on your definition of a lot. Divus Iulius certainly thought it took some doing. (Neall) [61]


Q: What's so special about the conquest of Gaul that not only the native worship but the actual Gods were "destroyed"? (Telgar)

A: There's a lot that's changing in 2e, but the fate of the Nemetondevos isn't one of them - if anything, it's worse. The destruction of the Gaulish pantheon is one of those events where the history of the World in Scion diverges from our actual history, chiefly because I'm fairly certain Julius Caesar wasn't actually a Roman Scion. Their priests and druids were killed, their sacred shrines abandoned or torn down, their worshippers brought in chains back to Rome. If you kill off and enslave an entire population, so much that it's difficult to find any information on their gods, and the actual entities abandon their Overworld and allied Terra Incognitia, how does that not constitute destroying the pantheon? Gods don't die easily, but they can die, and so can pantheons. Even if the constituent gods are still alive (contrast "still exist"), sulking in their Underworld effectively means the pantheon's gone.

This is Scion - lots of entities persist beyond death and can return to life, pantheons included.

(Don't get up in arms about the Atlantean pantheon, though. I wouldn't count on them showing up for a long while, if ever.) (Neall) [62]


Q: Will fatebinding exist and, if so, will there be more specifics to the system? (PHGraves)

A: Yes, and in a far more specified version than before. Playability and connection to the overarching story being told at the table are what we're trying to look at when we put any system in the game. (Neall) [63]


So, I have a question about the Fertility Purview (griffinguy24)

Hey, that thread was great, so thanks for that (in fact, I was just discussing Adonis earlier today, as an example of...nah, that'd be telling).

I don't want to give any Purview spoilers right now, but I will say that besides the various excellent possibilities you mentioned in that thread, let me reiterate that cults are a thing in this edition. None of the three Fertility Boons in Scion 1e were worth a tinker's damn, I'll agree with you, but if there were a system for cults in place? Given a bit of committed Legend expenditures, you could greatly ease the lives of your followers or fellow worshippers of the pantheon - and that's just the prosaic application of a ton of fresh food and lessened grocery bills. Add the idea of Idunn-lite - giving your food certain blessings or encouraging traits - and suddenly a small core of your cult and specially-blessed followers are far more potent and effective than they were before.

Purviews are going to be way bigger, more varied and unique, and interesting in ways gross and subtle, than the three powers per provided in 1e. (Neall) [64]


Q: I know you don't want to give spoilers, and I'm sure there's still a lot of stuff to be hammered down yet, but can I ask which Purview is shaping up to be your favorite so far? (Nervaqus)

A: War, though even that's subject to change. (Neall)

Q: My question there for the 2nd edition: Will this sort of problem be addressed? Aka will the purviews be quite useful and feeling godly even at low tiers already? (Ryu)

A: I was a writer on 2e Exalted, especially towards the end of the line. Without harping on it overly much, a lot of Exalted 1e - and even 2e - had what we call speedbump Charms. Power A is whack a guy, Power B is whack a guy real good. Once you'd bought Power B, which had Power A as a prerequisite, there was no real need to ever use Power A ever again. It was a bump into the road to the thing you actually wanted.

Infernals was really the first Exalted book to explicitly repudiate that methodology; we approached the Infernal Charmset with the idea that powers should scale with you, and that Charms that upgraded your capabilities were treated as upgrades to the earlier Charm. Nobody should discard something they bought with hard-won XP, and powers should scale upward with the practitioner. I still believe in that approach. (Neall) [65]


Q: Purviews will be different from the 3 per tier. meaning more than 3 powers per tier or something entirely different to a 'power list'? (Scutarii)

A: More than three powers per tier/also entirely different. (Neall)

Q: Will Knacks and Epics still be a thing similar to their 1e form or something entirely different? Or removed entirely? (Scutarii)

A: Knacks are a thing, but a little more concentrated. They're attached to something other than Attributes.

Epics are gone in their original form. Sardonyx has an innate scaling mechanic right now (in the pre-playtesting phase of Scion); "Epics" are more permission to scale upwards, and there are Knacks that relate to Might. You can still shotput a Volkswagon. (Neall) [66]


Q: But can you also recognize the army of the dead's tactics with nary a glance and prepare a successful counter offensive? (my point being are the mental knacks going to be a wee bit more useful this time around? gods of war that aren't actually tacticians until 6mo after the game comes out can be frustrating). (Gnomish American)

A: Yes, War will support tacticians and generals as well as Achilles. (Neall) [67]


I'm a bit upset Epics are gone, in my view the problem was more due to their scaling and always being a better investment than normal dots, they actually felt more mythological to me than some of the boons (although that may just be me having a slightly limited experience of mythology). (TwoDSix)

They're still there, they're just not called Epics and you don't buy them as specific dot levels. (Neall)

Q: Will we have Craftsmanship/Forgery purviews for Scions in 2e? Because the things that annoyed me the most about the 1e core were the lack of Frost, Illusion, and Craftsmanship powers. The first two were solved with Ragnarok, but the third never showed up, despite god of the forge being a decent archetype to aim for. (TwoDSix)

A: There's a whole crafting subsystem, for when you do a favor for dwarves. Crafter God should be a thing. (Neall) [68]


Q: (Gnomish American)

So I got this player, and this player's got this idea, and her idea is that of a pair of twins, Tina and Tanya. Tina and Tanya are scions of the Sun God.

The reason I'm here is because we've been tinkering with the idea of having the two characters share the same sheet, acting as a single character with two bodies. they would share the same health, willpower, legend the whole shebang and would lose dots out of each others presence (in their skills to be specific, each one excels at this or that and other skills are simply 'halved'.

Their single relic will in fact be two, a pendant, one half marked by a small figure of Apollo, the other, of his twin, Artemis. one will grant access to health, sun and prophesy, the other to Moon, Mystery and Darkness. when they're together the pendants share said purviews.

Is this a bad idea? Should they be separate characters?

I thought the sharing of everything was reminiscent of the Dioscuri and more than apropos.

Thoughts?

A: Seems fine to me.

It could get complicated, but weirdly, there's something similar in 2e that'll support this. (Neall) [69]


(discussing when actions in the system should get a roll)
Yeah, it's really up the type of character and the Director. We want to encourage that kind of thinking, however, and a big part of the system is letting characters feel competent and powerful.

This obviously extends to the Callings and Archetypes of Scion. (Neall) [70]


I don't really have much to add to the discussion at this point, but can I just say that I'm really looking forward to further previews? Because I am really looking forward to further previews. I had no idea how much I needed a really well conceived update on the Trinity verse and Scion until I heard that you guys were working on it several years back, but I'm positively giddy that we are at the preview stage now, and I can't wait to support the kickstarters. (taleswapper)

Trinity will likely be first.

Am I shoving Ian [Watson] and John [Snead] out the airlock into hostile space, letting them suffer the growing pains of a new system on Trinity while I chuckle and work on Scion? Absolutely not. I can assure you that is not what I am doing, most definitely not. (Neall) [71]


[…]ISTR someone mentioning something about environmental factors playing into scale, with examples including things like a god of thunder effectively being in a higher tier in a thunderstorm or Batman's tier getting a boost when he's working with the Justice League. Let me hunt down a link, unless someone else beats me to it… (Dataweaver)

That's Dave Brookshaw's quote (don't feel bad, Dataweaver, he said it while sitting right next to me). That refers to Myth Level, which is a Scion balancing mechanic, though I imagine it will be easy to rename and adopt for Aberrant (and potentially aberrants in Aeon, which happen to be written by some guy who's handsome). (Neall) [72]


Q: Will there be [a Scion 1e conversion guide] for when Sardonyx drops? (thedonnie)

A: No.

We're making strong - almost radical - changes to how Scion works. Knacks, Purviews, Scaling, Fate, Fatebinding, Archetypes, Legend, pantheons, types of Scion - all different. A conversion guide would basically boil down to a large series of judgment calls and be dependent on you guys eyeballing your own stuff anyways. (Neall) [73]


This makes me think we might see some "shaped" scions, heroes created full cloth by the gods rather than being conceived in the more traditional sense. Enkidu fits the bill for someone created rather than born, so would Wonderwoman shaped from clay, or even Athena birthed from Zeus's skull. (SpruceStripedGoose)

Yeah, there are multiple ways to make a Scion, and the resulting Scions are slightly different from one another as a result. One way doesn't even require divine parentage, precisely (though you do need to be a child of portent or royalty, possibly with a latent divine heritage). (Neall) [74]


Now you have me thinking of King Arthur or Siddhartha Gautama, people who were born to do great things not because they are the child of a divine being, simply because fate dictated it need be. (SpruceStripedGoose)

Those are both very fertile lines of thought for Scion 2e, although they may not be Scions proper. (Neall) [75]


Q: Another thing that surprised me from the system teaser: Daredevils are a scion thing now? (Gnomish American)

A: No, though that Tier roughly corresponds to pre-Visitation Scions. (Neall) [76]

Q: Out of curiousity, is that the same level that sorcerers and the other non-Scion characters that are being introduced? (That Other Guy)

A: Yes, although sorcerers (in particular) and certain Legendary creatures have the option to scale up to Hero level or beyond in certain aspects. (Neall) [77]


That sort of looks like they decided that anybody can be challenged by anyone. I call Grandma with a Shotgun against Atlas on the front lawn. (ArthurHansen)

Gonna respond with Arachne and Athena on the loom, so two out of three ain't bad. My requirements were a system where gods and mortals could meaningfully challenge each other, except when they don't. You're seeing the part of the system where they can meaningfully challenge each other. There's a Scale system that's referenced, but which you admittedly haven't seen.

With different Scale permissions, even a higher-tier action doesn't have to benefit from Enhancements and the successes going further. This lets gods be subtly better than mortals, but really crank it out when they have Scale, which means their success go further than a mortal's.

See also rishis slapping around Hindu gods, various demigods slapping around gods in their own pantheons. (Neall) [78]


Q: Now that you are a developer in the line, is there anything you might feel like changing in setting or system that you might, uh... let slip for us? Even vagaries? (Amateur Hour)

A: Scions aren't just made from one divine parent, one mortal parent, though that's by far the easiest and most common type of Scion. (Neall)

Q: Also: It's been a month since Scutarii wondered what you believe to be the coolest purview power so far written. Can you share, or is it still hazy? (Amateur Hour) [ed note: question was asked in June 2015]

A: It'll probably be hazy for months yet. It's my hope to take the safeties off Scion playtesting at the end of the year, but realistically it'll probably be early 2016. (Neall) [79]


That was, indeed, the only "crafting" power in Scion. It's also a poorly written power, since it's trying to cover... uh, everything, all at once. (Telgar)

Crafting is planned to be way more of a thing, and not just things Scions can do, either (they could commission an artifact from forge-gods or dwarves or something). (Neall) [80]

Q: I assume this is also something I can bug Cyclopes or other mythic crafter races over? (glamourweaver)

A: Yeah. I mean, you can also ask for it by yourself. (Neall) [81]


Q: This makes me wonder, how human sized are dwarves (TwoDSix)

A: Not very. (Neall)

Q: can a dwarf eventually become a god (TwoDSix)

A: Not unless their parent is a god. At best, they could maybe achieve god-level crafting capabilities, but they certainly couldn't use those weapons in any grand capacity. (Neall)

Q: Is dwarfiness a valid area to god around in? If not, could a dwarf theoretically become the Asier god of beards? (TwoDSix)

A: I don't think so in either case! (Neall) [82]


I'm not opposed to doing the Gods of Pegāna or other fictional pantheons (maybe even a return of the much-maligned Atlantean pantheon as a dead offshoot or rivals of the Theoi) as stretch goals or one-off products, but they won't be in any of the corebooks. Even then, it'd be down the line - plenty of "real" pantheons exist that deserve the spotlight. (Neall) [83]


Aten's on My List for 2e, although it's a pretty big list. I still enjoy the idea of him being the Titan who originated the concept of solipsistic monotheism, but I'd much prefer he be handled with a more deft and subtle touch. He's got a bit more room thanks to the new pantheons in 2e. (Neall) [84]


Q: Is there anything you can share about the Titans yet? (marin)

A: A little. I'm changing up the way the Titan structure works, slightly. Titans are still different in cause and kind than the gods, though the main difference lies in politics.

Not all Legendary Creatures are titanspawn, and that title doesn't automatically carry a stigma (at least not objectively; certain pantheons will feel differently. The Aesir won't particularly care, while the Theoi might care more). (Neall) [85]

My idea on this one was to drop the labels "Greater Titan" and "Titan Avatar" and just make the world-forms "Primordials", and the avatars "Titans". When Kronus castrated Ouranos (slew a previous governing Titan) he became the ruling Titan of the Primordial at the time. When the Gods bound the titans, the Primordial world-forms remain, making up most of the Overworld, but they're innert without governing Titans. (glamorweaver)

I like the cut of your jib, glamourweaver. (Neall) [86]

Q: So at the risk of covering ground already tread and forgotten, there won't be that element of "Gods have a lot of possible virtues that are all--at least from their own perspective--some sort of benevolence, while Titans all espouse Dark Virtues about being a right bastard?" anymore? (Mockery)

A: All Titans are dangerous and problematic (well, more problematic than gods) to let roam free, and many Titans are right bastards, but not all Titans are dangerous because they're right bastards. (Neall) [87]


Q: Does the title "Theoi" as opposed to "Dodekatheon" indicate that you're introducing additional Greek gods beyond the main 12? If so, which ones? (MrBridger)

A: Theoi is the name for the general pantheon, though some purely Roman gods and an Etruscan god or two hang around in their own sub-pantheons. (Neall) [88]


Since Demeter (who is pretty much ALWAYS considered a member) was deep-sixed for Hades (who is very seldom considered a member) in the first place, even the original Scion Dodekatheon... wasn't. (Ajax)

Rightfully so, in my opinion. Hear me out! Since Pluto (and Dis Pater, who's somewhat separate) was far more important to the Roman pantheon, and Hades/Pluto has a far greater significance and presence in modern, average knowledge of those pantheons. Scion's about modern myth just as much as the ancient myth. (Neall) [89]

Demeter was always a bit too chthonic for a Scion style god anyway. (Gnomish American)

She'll definitely be in the core in 2e, though. (Neall) [90]


Q: How many types of scions (divine/human parents, forged from clay, etc) do you have in mind? And will they be listed in Origins or Hero? (KingCarnival)

A: Four; in Hero. They'll have different social ties, though I don't think they'll be so different mechanically.

Technically God + Legendary Being = demigod, God + God = God will be options in later books, but I don't really consider them radical enough to merit their own pseudo-splats. I'm undecided though - it depends on how the social ties shake out. (Neall) [91]


Q: Is being a Scion the only way to become a god? If so, where did the first gods come from? (TwoDSix)

A: Not precisely...most of the gods were either Scions themselves, or issue of the Titans (Scions of another name). Every once in a while you've got an entity like Baba Yaga who really blurs the lines when it comes to what divinity actually means. (Neall)

Q: Is it possible for there to be a scion without a god being directly involved? (TwoDSix)

A: No. (Neall) [92]


Q: Will the game smack me if I want to say that Baba Yaga is the same being the Norse call Angraboda? Not to mention even more primordial overlaps like Vritra & Apep? Or that the Vanir (whose remaining self-identified members are now Aesir) were in fact the pan-poto-Celtic Pantheon? (glamourweaver)

A: It'll smack you more than a little. But it's your game, do what you want. (Neall)

Q: and if you scale Yggdrasil looking for Vanaheim, you may find the furthest outlands of Tir Na Nog? (glamourweaver)

A: This might smack you a little bit more, because Terra Incognita are a far more important setting piece for the game in 2e, and the Overworlds and Incognita aren't always precisely compatible with one another. (Neall) [93]

Interesting... I wonder which one of those is Terra Incognita, since both Vanaheim and Tir Na Nog are homelands of Gods... and Yggdrasil is basically the most iconic Axis Mundi there is. (glamourweaver)

There's a bit of a conceptual change happening to axis mundi, Terra Incognita, and Godrealms. (Neall) [94]


Q: Will we get Pan as a potential divine parent in 2nd edition? (White Oak Dragon)

A: Yes, though I haven't decided if the Marsyas myth will be separate, or if Pan will be core. Pan won't be "The Devil", though. Can't well have satyrs as a playable character type and not have Pan in there somewhere. (Neall) [95]


I'm looking forward to creating a megaman scion, sense constructed scions are in. (KingCarnival)

If you can give Megaman the same mythic resonance as Pygmalion's Galatea or Enkidu, well, more power to you. Dr. Light isn't exactly who I'd go with as a divine progenitor, though.

Being the direct creation of a god doesn't necessarily make you a Scion, and it takes a miraculous intervention on the part of the god. Such miracles aren't easy and they aren't free. By far the easiest of the four methods of making a Scion is the "old-fashioned way". The other options exist for gods and goddesses such as Ninhursag (for whom it's easier), Artemis (who vastly prefers investing her power), Ausir (who finds it difficult to create unless he's working with the dead), or anyone else who desires or requires options other than breeding.

(Weirdly enough, Aphrodite has Scions of all four methods.)

Adopting a divine child from another god is still a character creation choice, and one that doesn't require an investiture of power, but there's some issues with doing it that way. (Neall) [96]


(glamourweaver)

Assuming the same relative power-scaling, I'd be fine with Pan being a God instead of a Demigod, but he shouldn't be Legend 12. That status for the Thieo should be reserved for the Olympian 12 + their siblings who don't hold those seats for political reasons (Hestia and Hades).

Persephone may be a special case, but even there her power is kind of a marrying representation of others purviews (Demeter and Hades). Her worship in Ancient Greece was largely not in the context of her own power, but rather that she had Hades' ear and unlike him was sympathetic to prayer.

That's about how Legend works in this edition, yes.

Let me tell you, I'm really looking forward to the arguments as to why Móði and Magni should be Legend 11 instead of 10, but Þrúðr is fine at Legend 9. (Neall) [97]


(Úlfhéðnar)

I'd prefer to see Legend 12 be reserved for the heavy hitters of the pantheons when applicable. as it stands now, the Legend system is very vague and I think its prime space to represent your overall respect and importance in the pantheon, which would be great for giving a comparison for players who achieved Apotheosis, rather than assigning all the Gods as roughly equal among themselves. Let legend 12 be something that even other gods take serious notice of.

Zeus, Poseidon and Hades are all able to be represented as Legend 12 among the Theoi. Zeus is the stronger of the three brothers but each of them is a step above the rest of the Dodekatheon. Poseidon has an ongoing threat to establish a coup if Zeus doesn't behave and rule fairly and each was a contender for King of the Gods at one point. Most of the other Olympians could probably be best represented by Legend 11, still enormously powerful but not at that comparable height. Many of the lesser deities could take Legend 10 or 9 (Prime space for Eros and the like, Gods in their own right but obviously lesser than the Olympians and not even comparable to Zeus)

Odin, Thor and Freyr have to take a similar role among the Aesir, being the three most worshiped and forming a sort of triumvirate that many Indo-European religions have in common. The Rest of the common deities (Tyr, Heimdall, Baldr, Bragi, etc) could be represented as Legend 11: Njordr and Freya are explicitly referred to as lesser than Freyr and legend 11 makes sense in that context. Legend 10 and 9 could be reserved for the sons and daughters of these Gods and various named beings like Volundr and Dainn. Loki might be a crapshoot, I think a case can be made for Legend 12 or legend 11

Way ahead of you, Ulf. (Neall) [98]


Q: Will any of the pantheons be getting a name change like the Theoi? (marin)

A: Yes. Chinese, Egyptian, Aztec, the Loa (kinda-sorta), to name a few.

I don't think anyone else is changing their name, and there are other names and groupings within there. The Dodekatheon, for example, is now more properly the twelve greatest gods of Olympus proper (which the book will detail, +1 for Hades, and maybe +another for Persephone, since those two never visit).

Lots of pantheons have specifically-named groupings of three with mythical significance, or sub-pantheons and groupings contained within them. The Theoi up there contain two Triads, the (Greek names ahead) Olympioi, the Halioi, the Khthonioi, and associated sub-groupings. That's not accounting for allied Titans, where the politics get interesting. (Neall) [99]


Q: Is the tone going to keep the 1E more light, humourous and cartoonish vibe or is it going to be taking a more dark and realistic mythological feel? (Úlfhéðnar)

A: The latter, though perfectly cognizant of the fact that there's a myth where Thor needs booze for a party and he and Tyr go harass Hymir, eat all his food, fuck up his whaling trip, and then smash goblets in the guy's face until he agrees to give them his cauldron o' limitless ale.

There's a lot of myths where the gods act like shitfaced fratboys. (Neall) [100]


Q: 1) You mentioned that there's four different kinds of Scion and that Aphrodite had Scions of all varieties. Would you mind telling what those are? (Nervaqus987)

A: I'll tell you three, and the fourth you can guess if you read every supplement in 1e. Ask me at Gen Con and I'll confirm it.

1) Be a Scion of god and mortal born, like 100 percent of the people on this planet (though I'm not sure in vitro would work, and I don't think it would, so knock a few decimal points off, I guess). Also works for adopted Scions, but you always retain some part of your parentage, even if Auntie Athena raised you and you really take after her. 2) Be a Scion created by a god from inanimate materials, brought to life by miraculous means. Enkidu is my go-to example. It takes a decent bit of work on the part of the god, even if you're Ninhursag (a top-tier creation deity), and it takes some association with mortality (thanks, Shamhat), but you're essentially custom-created by the god. 3) Be transformed in infancy by miraculous means. You must be the descendent of mortal nobility, or possibly have some sort of divine lineage far enough in your line to be suitably transformed. Triptolemus is my go-to example; Adonis would also be suitable, though it raises some questions from his inclusion in the Phoenician pantheon*. But I'm not about to limit character concepts, because clearly the vehicle towards Scionhood is there, so you can take his Greek origin as an acknowledgement of "yeah, that's a way". (Neall)

Q: 2) How possible is it to create something new? Like, there's a lot of myths about Gods creating new kinds of animals or things like that. For example, Poseidon creating horses or whatever. How doable is that and if so, what general ballpark would you have to be in to pull it off(Hero, Demigod, God)? (Nervaqus987)

A: Demigod to God. Ixion created the centaurs, both horse and biker variants. He still does, the jerk.

Creating new subrealms and sub-pantheons is something you can do as a god. New Overworlds, pantheons, creation myths and altering the structure of the World is an appropriate end of a major, years-long epic campaign. '(Neall)

Q: 3) Revisiting an old question from a couple months ago, is War still your favorite Purview or has it been ousted. (Nervaqus987)

A: Actually, right now it's Fire, because we've been using it as a go-to example of how gods with a similar Purview have radically different expressions; the three characters we've been bandying about are Brigid, Loki and Agni. The first only has it because of syncretized Catholicism, and the metaphorical association with ritual purification and healing. Loki's expression is because his mother is lightning and his father is pine needles, but also because he (maybe) beat up a god with a similar name who was the literal expression of fire, stole that god's mantle, and threatened to burn the whole fucking place down**. Agni's expression of the Purview encompasses fires in virtually all forms metaphorical and literal, including inspiration and also blowing shit up.

*Maybe Adonis was originally Greek and joined the Phoenician pantheon in the Scion setting. I haven't really decided yet either way.
**We also discussed expression through dogs as a joke, but talking Marvel raises a lot of hackles around these parts. (Neall) [101]


Q: How closely are gods' and scion's powers going to mirror mythology? (Anteros)

A: Kind of a big question, wouldn't you say? Which mythology? Which gods? Which myths? Which competing myths within the same mythology?

"As close as we can, while still making new effects permissible and new niches, and making modern methods and uses viable" is about the only answer I can give to an open-ended question like that. (Neall) [102]

Fair enough. As long as the new edition allows the Greek gods their trademark shapeshifting shenanigans (Anteros)

That may or may not be their Pantheon-specific Purview. (Neall) [103]

That raises the odd question of why Loki has the Greek Pantheon Purview... (glamourweaver)

Loki can shapeshift, but always remains Loki. Man, woman, horse, they are all Loki.

Lots of pantheons have shapeshifting powers, but the Theoi do it most often, and the best. Still, the PSPs are evolving in mechanical discussions, so this may not be the only element of what they do. (Neall) [104]


Q: Does each character still have 4 virtues? (Gnomish American)

A: They still have Virtues, but we're looking at the best number. (Neall) [105]


Q: (glamourweaver)

Do the Titans not have objectively evil for their own sake "virtues" this time around?

I mean, I'm fine with "alien & antithetical to human civilization" virtues maybe (mine were Fecundity - creative capacity, Rapacity - destructive capacity, Submission - union with the greater Primordial, Dominance - command over oneself and others within that framework); but "I'm evil for its own sake" Virtues were really disappointing.

A: They're far more alien and antithetical this time around (and I might well steal some of yours and add it to our master list, so thanks for those). They are not necessarily evil for evil's sake, but all titans are difficult to get along with, and tend to "corrupt", in that they reformat the areas around them according to their essence. Some have adopted a few of the pantheon Virtues, rendering them more "god-like" than many Titans - enough to breed their own godly Scions. The distinction is political as much as it is metaphysical, inasmuch as they're largely the same thing. (Neall)

Q: How do the gods handle alliance with Titans (aside from 'very carefully')? Are there any pantheons that haven't made such alliances? (marin)

A: [...] Several, but of the core 10? The Chinese pantheon hates Hundun something fierce. (Neall) [106]


Q: Also where would you place people like Iris or the children of Styx on this scale of alien virtues and outlooks? (Achilles)

A: Arke probably adopted Titanic Virtues, but Iris didn't, joining her sister out of Fatebinding or love or amor fati.

Styx would be a goddess, I imagine. For the Greeks, the distinction is far more political. For other pantheons, the distinction is more metaphysical. (Neall) [107]


Q: How would a Scion that gets afflicted with lycanthropy grow to use it as part of their Legend, would it just be animal purview of something different? (KingCarnival)

A: Eventually, it might get subsumed into the Animal Purview, but it'd be something afflicting the Scion (a Path, most likely) that just makes their life more interesting. (Neall) [108]


Q: Can you please tell some more about the sorcerers who want to steal power from the gods?
What atticus o'sullivan [of the Iron Druid books] would think of thid game? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Baba Yaga isn't a goddess in Scion 2e. Her riders, though, can go toe-to-toe with demigods.

Atticus is a viable character concept, although he's probably going to be a bit lower-powered than the books portray; the name of the game is Scion, not Iron Druid. Still, I adored the Iron Druid books, so take that for what you will. (Neall)

Q: Any big things you can share about the Aztec pantheon? (marin)

A: The Teotl are actually the Aztec pantheon this edition; the Inca and Mayan pantheons are slated for inclusion in later books, though they'll be mentioned (and the Aztecs and Maya share Quetzacoatl/Kukulkan). There are confederate pantheons in the game, but those aren't them. (Neall) [109]


Judging from the myths I've read, I would call Artemis asexual. I think she just loathes sex. She becomes enraged at one of her nymphs who becomes pregnant, and one man she does favor, Hippolytus, has no interest in romance. (samcwic)

Camilla, Atalanta; these are Scions of Artemis.

I'm unsure of what to do with Artemis' sexuality (she does strike me in a majority of myths as largely asexual, but then there's the nymphs and Callisto), but I can promise you that she doesn't have any interest in men beyond a slight filial affection, and certainly not in being a dominatrix. (Neall) [110]


Q: What are the Chinese Pantheon called? (TwoDSix)

A: The Shen. The Celestial Bureaucracy is a thing, but not the name of the pantheon.

Q: Do the Chinese Pantheon have a standard language, or do they use all the Chinese languages? (TwoDSix)

A: Old Chinese, I'd imagine, though the proper answer is "both". Many Scions have the ability to communicate regardless of language.

While there's a lot of games I consider it fascinating to play around with language use and different dialects - Dark Ages Vampire, for one - and there's an element of linguistics in there borrowed from Percy Jackson (Pre-Visitation Scions within a pantheon are "hardwired" to pick up on the pantheon's distinct language, and rapidly become omnilingual), I generally don't consider quibbling over spoken communication to be a fruitful avenue of pathos in a game that's inherently cross-cultural. That said, the idea that the Shen debate which variety of Chinese to speak amongst themselves and their followers is probably correct. (Neall)

Q: What's their Pantheon Specific Purview? (TwoDSix)

A: It currently has a lot to do with order and fortune. (Neall)

Q: Can you still play a 'child of the Pantheon', who has a caseworker instead of an identified parent? (TwoDSix)

A: It doesn't precisely fit with how the four types of Scions operate, though there might be a generic template we can attribute to a Scion's parentage, and they take after their "adopted" parent. (Neall) [111]


Q: Do the Deva and the Shen share Yama/Yanluo? (glamourweaver)

A: No.

The Deva, Shen, and Kami all share Yama, though he'll only be written up once for space concerns and the Deva pantheon is sort of primary. For a redeemed god of death who got his ass kicked, he's shockingly popular. (Neall) [112]


Q: What determines the primary pantheon of gods that are in multiple ones (KingCarnival)

A: Your primary source of Legend and acculturation, though "primary pantheon" is not a system term. (Neall) [113]


Q: What are the Egyptian pantheon called? (marin)

A: The Netjer; the Pesedjet remain as the deities accorded high status. (Neall) [114]


Q: Should we assume that the current [pantheon] names remain but as something other than the pantheon as a whole? (TwoDSix)

In general, they refer to structures within those pantheons, except for the Aztecs, since the word didn't actually relate to anything. (Neall)

Q: What would the child of two gods/demigods from different pantheons be? (TwoDSix)

A: A child of a broken home, probably. (Neall)

Q: In case it got buried, what is a character's Path, I've noticed it mentioned multiple times, but I don't remember if it was ever explained. (Gnomish American)

A: Path refers to a system term that describes a system and social topic within the setting. Pantheons are a Path, for example. (Neall) [115]


Q: Is there a possibility that a Pantheon could have more than one PSP? I've tried to make a PSP for the Anga, the Guarani gods of the southern Amazon, and found that there's three major concepts that would each make a decent PSP (in this case, the control of nature spirits, masks and musical ceremonies, and leading members of a tribe towards The Land Without Evil via correct behavior and literal pilgrimages). I'm not sure I can do all of those concepts justice in a single PSP. (griffinguy24)

A: In general, a pantheon-specific Purview is both a collection of cultural-specific magics and magics common to both the pantheon themes and their traditionally-accorded powers, but it is difficult to fit a lot of diverse powers under one banner like that. I wouldn't put it past a confederate pantheon or one that's gone through a lot of changes like the Theoi to potentially have more than one.

Gods who belong to different pantheons would have access to others as well, mind.

The Anga will have to be tackled sooner or later, since they're on my list as a stretch goal pantheon (if we do a Kickstarter) or a non-core pantheon book (if we don't). I generally tried to put difficult or more unique pantheons in the stretch goals and more core ones in the core books, which I should probably mention more when I go, "Yeah, Gauls as a stretch goal!" to head off the whole "But what about the Annunaki?" complaints. In fact, I might just talk about the core pantheons I'd like to do for all three books. (Neall)

This isn't the only Pantheon where I can see more than one viable PSP. The Aztec necessity for blood sacrifice to keep the universe from dying is definitely a concept they embody, but there's also the nahualli, an animal-soul-double that guides and protects them. And that's just off the top of my head. (griffinguy24)

This is less an Ask Neall than Neall Woefully Sighs In Agreement And Says, "You're telling me." (Neall) [116]

If Gods in multiple Pantheons already set the precedent, I don't see why some Pantheons can't have more than one unique Purview. In the end, experience points will play equalizer between PCs even if some have greater unique purview access than others. (glamourweaver)

I largely agree; the question is more where to draw the line, or whether to make outliers fit into other boxes within the system (for example, making nahualli a sort of Path-accessible unique combination of Guide and Creature). (Neall) [117]


Q: Speaking about Artemis, will Hyperborea and its native Hyperboreans be present? (Anteros)

A: Terra Incognita are really being brought to the forefront in this edition, since I consider them pretty vital to the feeling of Scion as a World of Myth. So, yes, but like other Terra Incognita it's Of the World, but not precisely Within It. (Neall) [118]


Q: What distinguishes a God from a Titan Avatar ? And can one become the other ? And what makes Gods different from similar-powered legendary creatures like the Asura, for example ? (Rwandrall)

A: "Good question!" he said, while neatly ducking it. (Neall) [119]


Q: Does a Japanese mortal's adherents Buddhism or lack of there-of whether Emma-O (Yama) or Izanami gets claim to that soul? (glamourweaver)

A: Claims to souls are often highly political in nature, in the cases where they're indistinguishable from the metaphysical. (Neall) [120]

Q: What's in it for the gods? (marin)

A: Worship and fulfillment of your role in the pantheon grants many benefits (though let me hasten to add that gods aren't dependent on any of those things to exist and work godly powers or miracles). Also, the Underworld is some sweet spiritual real estate. (Neall)

Q: Given how much the Yoruba pantheon have syncretised, who do they feel they have a claim on? (marin)

A: A lot of folks, to be honest with you. The Yoruba and Loa are an interesting pantheon. (Neall) [121]


Q: Can a God have Titan descendants? If not - does that mean we can expect Shu, Tefnut, & Nut to be treated as Gods this time around (since Ra is one)? Always seemed weird to me for Geb and Nut to be metaphysically different types of beings. (glamourweaver)

A: Probably not, but it might be possible if one parent is a Titan and they've got Titanic Virtues. I dunno, I'll have to mull that one over. (Neall) [122]


Q: Can Scions evolve into beings that aren't gods, or are they restricted to the divine ladder? (TwoDSix)

A: Maybe. I've got my eye on stuff down the future of the line that aren't gods. (Neall)

Q: For that matter, is there anything past god in the terms of the divine ladder, or is Legend 12 the maximum? (TwoDSix)

A: Legend 12 is the maximum, though having a pantheon role or personal puissance really helps, even at that level. (Neall)

Q: Do Scions tend to look like their mortal parent, divine parent, or a mix of both? (TwoDSix)

A: A little bit the former. (Neall)

Q: How many chromosomes does a god have? (TwoDSix)

A: Depends on their species at the time. It's not a barrier to conception, though. Few Scions are born with genetic disabilities severe enough to hinder their heroism. (Neall)

Q: What is the offspring of a Scion and mortal? Two Scions? Are gods/scions limited by gender boundaries when procreating? (TwoDSix)

A: An offspring of a Scion and a mortal is just a mortal, though they may be an exceptional person in their own right, and tend to have some sort of supernatural aspect or talent to them. Two Scions are much the same, though it depends on whether they've achieved demigodhood. And the answer to the third question is generally yes, though lots of pantheons have ways around it (especially the Greco-Romans, those weirdos), and nearly every pantheon god can genderbend if they really feel like it. Gender identities amongst gods reflect the full range of that in humanity, and lots of gods - like Loki, for instance - might even prefer alternate pronouns, if Scions can explain the concept to their progenitors. (Neall) [123]


Q: What you have ideas do you have for the Yoruba PSP (KingCarnival)

A: I'll have to converse more with my writer before answering that. (Neall) [124]


Q: Can demigods and heroes gain supernatural benefits from being worshipped? (Anteros)

A: Yes, but it requires investment in your cult and the larger pantheon, so it all sort of balances out. (Neall)

Q: Will all nymphs still be bonded to physical anchors? (Anteros)

A: Probably. (Neall)

Q: How capable will sorcerers be able to be, on a scale of Rincewind to Harry Dresden? (Anteros)

A: It's more like Rincewind to Baba Yaga, with Atticus O'Sullivan as a weird outlier. I'm really hoping to let sorcerers scale, whereas saints sort of ignore scaling and oracles/prophets do stuff gods technically can't. But truth be told, we haven't set down systems for that yet, so it's really subject to change.

A comparison of what I'm very roughly aiming for would probably be God-Blooded compared to Dragon-Blooded Exalts, if you know your Exalted. Even that's not exact, though. (Neall)

Q: Neall: When you say Scion: Origins is going to be Urban Fantasy do you mean high powered or low powered? (Thanks for all the answers so far, even if they make me annoyed that the books I own aren't 2e) (TwoDSix)

A: Fairly low. High myth is for the later books. (Neall) [125]


Q: Will their be any discussions on how Folk Heroes (Paul Bunyan, Robin Hood, etc.) fit into the territories of greater pantheons? Or for that matter, Elvis, Tupac Shakur, and other famous individuals with their own personal legends (I have a vision of Christopher Lee being welcomed into a British or Cinematic pantheon with open arms)? (shkspr1048)

A: (Neall)

Certain folk heroes who truly lived have the potential to be celebrated within the Underworld and attain a status of their own, even being picked up as low-level Guides. Exceptional individuals without a divine lineage also get discussed. For the most part, though, celebrities won't be represented, and Christopher Lee might well be an expert Guide on hunting vampires, but not welcomed into a Cinematic Pantheon (unless we do a Shard or alternate setting for Scion, but that's an alternate setting for you).

Christopher Lee was a direct descendent of Charlemagne and nobility, so maybe he was a Scion himself, albeit one who never seized his power and chose Fame over Legend. As for Babe the Blue Ox, we can argue all day about fictional figures who clothe themselves in the tropes of divinity, and that's worthy of some wordcount to me - not Paul Bunyan, but Columbia, or Marianne, or Brittannia.

Which brings me to my next point: Scion itself takes place within a layer of fiction that's divorced, albeit slightly, from the real-world mythologies and religions. The distaff and distinct myths exist and work in concert, if not precisely harmony, with the rest of the World. We're engaging with these mythological characters as fictional creations that hew close to their mythological portrayals (for instance, Thor is a protector and hero of mankind who occasionally gets really drunk and fucks shit up, rather than the sadist jerk he's portrayed as in the Iron Druid novels), but they're still characters in a roleplaying game, and we engage with them on that level. The World has a bit of alternate history (secret history would be the correct term, except it's not precisely secret) in that generally, if an event was ascribed to divine providence, odds are it's totally legitimate.

There will almost certainly never be a Cinematic Pantheon (though there is a Brythonic one that interacts with the other Celts, both Gaulish and Irish) unless we spin off a Shard where such things are possible, but there's probably room for you to imagine a celebrity backed or loved by a god or goddess. [126]


Q: With the mention of saints (on the one hand) and the potentially syncretic nature of the West African Pantheon(s), I find myself wanting to know: how will Scion address the Abrahamic faiths? (Dataweaver)

A: Very caref- (Neall)

(And please don't say “very carefully”; I’m taking that as a given.) (Dataweaver)

I know, but it's worth reiterating. Still, I'll talk more about this at Gen Con, so hold your horses for a few days.

I will note, though, that a primary source of inspiration for the new edition is The Wicked + The Divine, where the scientifically- and historically-verified Pantheon exists alongside Abrahamic faiths (to which monotheism, evolving from henotheism as a concept, came somewhat late) with no problem. Another source of inspiration is the NBC series Kings; yet another is Ishmael Reed's Mumbo Jumbo, whose monotheist Wallflower Order is very similar to the Order of the Divine Glory, except rather cooler. Make of that what you will for the moment, but I will say that I don't intend to include the Order of the Divine Glory in its part incarnation at the moment, and if I do, it'll be more like the Templars of Assassin's Creed than anything else. (Neall) [127]


Q: With you being able to steal anothers god mantle / powers would how this will work then ingame make it possible for gods / pantheons to exist that try for nothing less than taking over the whole world by just stealing the mantles / powers of every god they can get their hands on? (currenlty working on a story idea that has something in that direction in it, but not sure if the new scion would support it or not). (Ryu)

A: You can subsume part of a god's mantle, yes, though it's not easy. You would probably be able to houserule something along those lines, though. (Neall)

Q: Furthermore as one of my players asked: The dragon god descendants. Will they be able to assume a draconic form or use draconic powers only via animal? Or will there be also some other shapeshifting things that allow one to take on mythical forms so to say? (Ryu)

A: Here be dragons, eh? I have plans for the dragon gods. Do you know how many cultures have some incarnation of dragon? Or that the thunderbird Wakį́nyąn of the Lakota destroyed massive reptiles of smoke and flame called the Unk Cekula in that mythology's prehistory?

Fun stuff. I know that didn't precisely answer your question, so let me answer the other one: yeah, shapeshifting is going to be a part of the game. The Greco-Romans are the best at it, but lots of tricksters and sorcerers can do it, too. (Neall) [128]


Q: Will the books once again include iconics and a sample adventure (which I loved about Hero, but thought took up too much space in Demigod and God which could have been used for more gods/purviews/knacks), or is it just going to be rules and fluff? (TwoDSix)

A: Current plan is for the iconics (and it's a different Band, this time) to be a separate product. I don't plan to put a sample adventure in the corebook - too many bad memories from Hero, too little space - but we do have some planned for down the line. (Neall)

Q: Are knacks returning? In some ways they modelled epic attributes better than the actual epic attributes, so I'd love to see them return in a different form. (TwoDSix)

A: Knacks are returning, but aren't precisely tied to Attributes - as you said, they're in a different form. (Neall) [129]


Q: What plans are there for having Legendary Creatures as PCs? (marin)

A: The ones in Origin are either low-powered LCs hiding amongst humanity (your satyrs, your kitsune) or humans with some form of what nWoD would call a lesser supernatural template - your berserkers, for example, or your pre-Visitation Scions (kind of the stars of the show, to be frank). I'd like to do a book down the line to upgrade them, though some of the ones in Origin will get a mention to upgrade them to the Hero playing field.

Lycanthropy and vampirism are Hero-level templates that press up against the hard Demigod barrier. (Neall) [130]

Q: Can Kitsune get in on that too? (glamourweaver)

A: Nine tails, son. (Neall) [131]

Q: What LCs would be at the Demigod or God level? Also, what LCs go across tiers? (TwoDSix)

A: Not too sure on the demigod level, but I have a few ideas about the God levels. (Neall)

Q: Also, are vampires going to take after the Scion 1e ones or the World of Darkness ones (old or new)? (TwoDSix)

A: Scion 1e. (Neall) [132]


Q: I understand that you can't go into specific details, but which pantheon and/or god do you feel has changed the most from 1e to 2e so far? (Dioscuri)

A: The Orisha/Loa. (Neall) [133]


(on the reveal of the tenth pantheon in Hero 2e at Gen Con 2015)
It's the Manitou, the Algonquin Pantheon.

You're welcome.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'll be over here having my mind blown! ​(Gnomish American)

I'll confirm what Gnomish American said. I'm totally making a Scion of Wenaboozhoo! (Melange_Thief)

Yup, you totally can. (Neall) [134]

Q: A question for Neall: Is it too late to change the name of the Manitou pantheon to a plural form of that word? Because from what I can tell, the other pantheons are mostly plural forms (the obvious exceptions being the Shen and the Kami, but to my knowledge Chinese and Japanese do not obligatorily distinguish between singular and plural), but in Ojibwe, which is very closely related to Algonquin, manidoo is a singular form. The plural would be something like manidoog, which could easily be written as manitoug or manitouk as well. Unfortunately I'm not finding any Algonquin language sources on this (and, unlike Ojibwe, I can't speak or write Algonquin), but I'll keep searching. (Melange_Thief)

A: Manitouk it is, unless my other Algonquin source disagrees. Thanks! (Neall) [135]


Q: Were any other pantheons confirmed for later books [at Gen Con]? (marin)

A: Not yet, but I can tell you I've got Mesopotamian, Mayan, and Inuit pantheons slated for later books.

Ordinarily I'd let y'all stew a little without spoilers, but someone did ask me that at Gen Con, and I went into my philosophy on stretch goal pantheons: groups of gods that require a more fictional flourish, or different play than a normal Scion game, won't be in core books. Also, it neatly heads off the "why are you doing the Gauls before the Mesopotamians" complaint: we might not do the former, but we're definitely doing the latter. (Neall) [136]

*waves overlapping while opposed Navajo & Puebloan pantheon(s) around as a banner - WE NEED COYOTE! AND GRANDMOTHER SPIDER! AND THE FOUR FORMER WORLDS BENEATH THIS ONE THAT MANKIND HAD TO CLIMB UP THROUGH!*

The Inuit Pantheon would be the perfect place for Tulugak (Raven) to make his debut (though obviously, like Coyote, he gets around)!

I'd push for Lakota too - mainly for the Thunderbirds vs. Horned Serpents dynamic (to potentially link in parallel to Garuda vs. Naga and Perun vs. Veles), but the Ojibwe actually make it possible to slip them in at the fringes of Algonquian cosmology (Great Lakes being close enough to the Plains for cultural exchange obviously to have occurred). Beyond them, the biggest name thing the Lakota cosmology brings to the table is White Buffalo Calf Woman as a patron deity. (glamourweaver)

Way ahead of you, glam.

As usual. (Neall) [137]


Q: Can you share the "things other than Gods you can evolve to be" you mentioned earlier, or was that just at Gencon? (glamourweaver)

A: I should say that they're not Pokemon, but beings like Baba Yaga aren't quite gods but aren't not either. (Neall) [138]


Q: Will gods still have associated skills and attributes? (Gnomish American)

A: No to Attributes, unless those attributes are a specific part of their Legend (Hercules, for example). Maybe to Skills. You inherit lots of things from your divine parent, but it's more of a starting bonus, not something that channels or defines your character advancement. (Neall)

Q: Do scions ever have birthrights previsitation? (Gnomish American)

A: Very rarely, and they can use them, but not to the degree a full Scion can. (Neall)

Q: Will Vidar (a god known for being a god who liked him some schadenfreude and liked to punish people by giving themselves enough rope to hang themselves) have something other than super strength and stamina? (Gnomish American)

A: Yes. (Neall) [139]


Q: Is the initiation into a path more something you gain IC or something purchased OOC? (KingCarnival)

A: Both! You can spend experience on furthering your development in the Path, which increases your overall Path rating. (Neall) [140]


Q: How do the Aesir feel about their high profile representation in the Marvel films? (glamourweaver)

A: I'm not actually sure they exist in the World in 2e. Even if they do, the Aesir consider it the Fatebinding equivalent of empty calories - it won't help avert Ragnarok.

Loki would be fine with it, though; they're happy gender studies have caught up with terms to accurately describe them. (Neall) [141]

Well the movies haven't - but the comics have, yes. (glamourweaver) [142]


Q: anyways to get it back to scion. Has it been asked how scions would interact with the religions that deal with their gods and goddesses? be it hinduism, hellenismos, asatru, shinto and so on? (herkles)

A: Cult mechanics will be present within the game, and Scions will likely integrate with those religions. It's worth noting, and worth stressing, that those religions are not the same as the real-world living religions, but fictional portrayals within the Scion gameline. (Neall)

Q: What happens to the setting when (not if...) a glowing Scion of Ra clad in raiments of gold and turquoise rides their chariot of fire shooting arrows of desire from their bow of burning gold at rampaging ice giants down the Thames? (Scutarii)

A: There's no Sleeper Curse or Paradox. There's no Masquerade. People who literally saw the event will probably question their beliefs, people who saw it on TV might accept or dismiss it, and Fatebinding hits you like a hammer. Hope it was worth it. Your personal cult would probably get a boost, though.

Scion is a World of Modern Myth. If you try to pull the scientifically-verifiable miracles on international TV, you'll still have people denying it, or - more likely - increasing their fervent worship to their own gods. While this can be good, it's really just rocked the boat quite a bit, and every god will think you're an asshole (as opposed to something necessary, like putting down a rampaging ice giant). (Neall) [143]


Q: Why is Hera still married to Zeus? (TwoDSix)

A: The goddess of marriage can't exactly be divorced. (Neall) [144]


Q: Neall,1) Besides the Theoi and the Loa/Yoruba-gods (not sure of their collective noun off-hand), are their any other of the 1e pantheons that are getting major conceptual overhauls on their PSPs? (On a related note, please tell me Geasa are still in for the Tuatha) (Lokisenna)

A: Virtually all of them. Geasa are still important for the Tuatha. (Neall)

Q: 2) Related but distinct: What is your general approach or design philosophy for PSPs? (Lokisenna)

A: If there are cultural magics wielded by the gods, and/or if the mythologies have distinct powers their gods frequently use, those go into a Pantheon-specific Purview. Ideally, this is under a unifying theme that relates to the pantheons. This is why the Greeks are superior shapeshifters to even the Knacks of various Trickster Callings - they embody concepts, and thus their shape is often irrelevant. PSPs also tie into other Purviews and Knacks, to produce culturally-specific effects.

That said, PSPs are one of the things we need to kick the tires the hardest and longest on, to make sure the fucking things work. Seiðr and runic magic are both distinct but would, under this paradigm, be under the Æsir PSP; does this work for characters? Can we tie the two together somehow? It's slow going, but I think it'll work. (Neall) [145]


Now I know you have stated that the Gods aren't birthed from mortal belief (Ratet)

Yup, that is correct. (Neall)

nor fueled by it. (Ratet)

Did not say that. Gods aren't reliant on worship for power, it's true, the same way a car isn't precisely reliant on high-quality gasoline or a tank of nitrous oxide strapped under the frame. But those certainly make driving easier and give a massive boost, if you're not afraid of taking a little wear on the engine.

There's a degree of symbiosis going on. Gods needs humanity as much as humanity needs the Gods, if for nothing else than to provide meaning for one another. They can exist apart from one another, but they're lesser for it. (Neall)

Q: But can you elaborate then why the player character would bother with them? It just doesn't seem to offer any benefit to play a God that gifts humans with something to better themselves. Like a new food. Or calming a raging typhoon. Also thanks for putting effort into this version. I struggle to use 1st Edition due to lack of polish and options. (Ratet)

A: Lots of reasons. Simple companionship, wanting to reaffirm their mantle and divinity in Fate through recognition, wanting a cult to do their works and do shit in the world in their name without getting their hands dirty. Some might even invoke worship so they stay away; prayer to the Morrigan, not for victory in war, but so that war doesn't touch your loved ones and homestead. Having a cult fuels certain miracles and effects, allows you to touch your followers in an organized way, and helps to codify and cement your divine role and Callings against negative Fatebindings. (Neall) [146]


This is why the Greeks are superior shapeshifters to even the Knacks of various Trickster Callings - they embody concepts, and thus their shape is often irrelevant. (Neall)

Q: Any particular reason that this is more true of the Theoi than of other pantheons? For that matter, is it true of the non-Greek members? (Lokisenna)

A: Greco-Roman Gods tend to be gods embodying abstract concepts a lot more often than other types of divinity, or the Spirtual Beings of Native mythologies, or what have you. The Morrigan has War as her Purview, it's true; Deimos, though, is God of Dread. Dread! It's to a degree you don't often see in other pantheons.

Loki is spectacularly good at turning gender, or into a horse, or into lots of other things. The Theoi as a whole can do stuff like turn into clouds and rain on people. Specifically Etruscan (like Leinth, who mostly hangs out in the Underworld or in hospice care) and specifically Roman (like Divis Julius, who's still sour about Brutus) Gods are less good at this sort of thing, but still pretty good, they just tend to focus their power in other arenas. (Neall) [147]


I suppose the Germanic cultural mistrust of Magic is just going to vanish then? Because Practicing Seiðr was not only a specifically female practice but was actually highly illegal and a cause for ridicule, scorn, fear and distrust. (Úlfhéðnar)

Give me a little credit for actually reading the Lokisenna. I'm aware of the mistrust. Loki gives Odin shit for knowing seiðr. Runic magic like what Egil does and the shamanic seid are two different practices that would fit into the same PSP - one is culturally cool, the other isn't. Maybe it's because of the hybrid, confederate pantheon the Æsir are, having absorbed the Vanir, that their PSP is like that. We're still kicking the tires. But yes, practicing seiðr would probably be a cause for all of the above.

This actually ties into an interesting element of Scion, though - you're modern characters, and modern people, interacting with ancient mores and divinities and social codes. In much of the modern day, who gives a shit if it's a womanly act or a specifically feminine practice? (Besides all the Æsir.)

If you're a male Scion, is your masculinity defined by the magics you perform? Do you bow to social pressure, or do you tell Thor to choke on his hammer, you'll wear a dress if you feel like it and magic all day? And this goes way beyond the Norse. The Greeks do all kinds of inappropriate shit, and still do. The Aztecs are expecting their blood or the sun don't rise. What's it mean to confront this sort of thing head-on, these belief systems? (Neall) [148]


Q: How much can we expect to see reference to gods throwing their support behind modern cultural phenomena (Loki and trans* & genderqueer rights, etc.)? What about culture-specific things like the modern attempts at reviving the Gaelic languages? I would imagine the Tuatha would at least support such, if not actively. (Lokisenna)

A: A bit, and this extends into the level of fictionality I referenced earlier: the Gods of Scion are not the actual gods of these religions, but the gods through the chosen lens of mythology and fiction for game purposes. Loki uses the singular they. I'd be much happier saying Caeneus is a trans* Scion of Poseidon. On the other hand, there's the danger of, as Ulfhednar said, effectively whitewashing the myths and de-fanging the pathos you get from these radically different ancient mores in the modern era. It's a balancing act, one that needs to actually be taken on a case-by-case basis.

And yes, the Tuatha would support those things. (Neall) [149]


Ok, more questions on language things gods might have opinions on, out of curiosity!

Q: 1) The Theoi's opinion on the modern state of Greece going with Modern Greek as its official language instead of Ancient Greek? (Lokisenna)

A: Their bred Scions are still hardwired to speak Ancient Greek or Latin, depending on mantled entity. They're not thrilled, but they probably don't muchly care. They'd speak Modern when it suits them. (Neall)

Q: 2) Their thoughts on (Classical) Latin revivalism? Sure, it's a small movement, but it's there! (Lokisenna)

A: Probably happy about it. (Neall)

Q: 3) Any gods with opinions on constructed languages? Intended auxiliary languages, like Esperanto or Lojban? (Lokisenna)

A: Probably not. (Neall)

Q: 4) What do the Polynesian gods that are still around think of Tok Pisin? (Lokisenna)

A: I'll probably cover that when we do the Atua in Demigod. (Neall)

Non-language, but related, question:
Q: 5) How much active effort do the pantheons put toward trying to save the scrapes of their original associated cultures that are still around? Let's be honest, no modern culture is going to feel at home to gods as old as those in Scion. (Lokisenna)

A: There's a good deal of ancient cults still active, more so than in the modern day here. Our world is not the World in Scion, though it's close. The old gods never went away; they still exist in the teeming mass of humanity. The old religions are still there. (Neall) [150]


This made me think about two questions relating to scion.

Question 1.) is Scion going with the idea the values and ideas of the gods and their religion don't ever change and have never changed?
Question 2.)Relatedly How do the various indian gods view modern india, same with the Japanese. (herkles)

A: Those are questions the book itself will have a lot to say on, more so than I can cover here. (Neall) [151]


This set of questions came to me;

Going under the assumption that the modern collection of monotheistic religions are incorrect as far as Scion goes, where do all the uncounted billions of dead souls from the last few centuries end up when they die? Do they simply wander the earth cluttering up the place with traffic that only those with the Death purview can see? Do they all become specters as they have no death god to look after them? And can an aspiring death god of one pantheon or another lay claim to these essentially homeless souls? Most importantly, was this concept addressed in the new edition? (Darksol-aeternium)

A: Some simply reincarnate on death (most probably do, actually, since the World's population is growing). Others might linger in the World itself, until a wandering psychopomp stops to help them (which is the kind of thing that heroes and demigods of Death do during their downtime). If they're not claimed by related pantheons, such as the Arabic or Caananite ones, there are "unaffiliated" realms within the Underworld. The Underworld has some really prime pieces of real estate, but there are still wild, untamed elements, and there are neutral underworlds where cities grow upwards towards the muted, cold sun of the dead. (Neall) [152]

Q: Am I to interpret this to mean, more or less, that in the context of the setting, the modern monotheistic faiths are incorrect because they've abandoned most of their gods, rather than the stupid thing with Aten from 1e? You've mentioned the latter is out anyway. (Lokisenna)

A: Monotheism's place in the setting is something I don't want to comment much more on, because I want the wording to be exactly what I mean, and if I give an off-the-cuff answer it'll either piss off or turn off a whole lot of people.

Aten is something that's going to be in the book, just different. The Caananite pantheon is something I'd like to cover in Scion anyways, warily circling the Egyptian and Mesopotamian pantheons in a Levantine standoff. They're slated for the Demigod book. (Neall) [153]

Q: Branching off this (and because I don't remember if 1e addressed this): Where do new souls for come from? What's the usual time between death and reincarnation? (Lokisenna)

A: Nobody really knows where new souls come from, though most don't care, and theories revolve around the depleting biomass of the planet fueling new souls for humanity. As in so much else, myth defies scientific analysis.

Different pantheons regard reincarnation differently. Some have afterlives and Underworlds that are specifically geared towards engineering reincarnation as quickly as possible; others have permanent residences for souls and shades. (Neall) [154]


Q: So does Inari also use singular-They? (glamourweaver)

A: Not always; Inari would be genderfluid on the binary sexual continuum for the most part, unless they're being androgynous that day. (Neall) [155]


Cool, I am not really familar with the Wicked and the divine. So feel free to tell me about it (herkles)

It is sufficiently cool that it has dethroned American Gods as the top inspiration for this edition of the game, or at least shouldered that book to the side aesthetic-wise. Also worth noting is Gillen's run on Journey into Mystery, which is also excellent, and provided the inspiration for the fourth type of Scion for the second edition (though WicDiv and Mage: the Hero Defined also contributed heavily). (Neall) [156]

Q: Looking at those inspirations... is the fourth type a god who's died and been reincarnated? (marin)

A: Yep. That's what happens when you make the Devata and Tuatha into core pantheons (with Nemetondevos as a stretch goal).

Gods, demigods, and even heroes can be reincarnated and weave their Legend to take advantage of their prior incarnation's power. It's hard to kill a god (unless they're Fated somehow to completely perish, and even then it's nearly impossible to keep a good life-death-rebirth deity down, so long as they don't get killed by mistletoe or something), but it can be done, and they'll hang out in the Underworld until they resurrect somehow, choose to reincarnate as mortals, or just sort of dissipate into a shade. Their divine mantles don't disappear when they die - the archetypes and power they embody still exist within Fate, so a successor could potentially seize that mantle and adopt it themselves.

Minor gods, perished demigods, or cultural heroes chosen to do the will of divinity are the ones we suggest in the game (a few from every pantheon), or gods from a now-defunct part of the pantheon, but if your Scion game has that Thor took one to the face about twenty years back and now you've got to fight off Magni and Modi to wield Mjolnir once more, more power to you. (Neall) [157]

Q: Is Baldur still around by default, or is he on the table for this? His primary remembered story is about him dying, after all. (Lokisenna)

A: By default, he's not - the Edda prophecies are in the future, rather than the past, much like in 1e - but if you decide they're not, he surely is. Though claiming his mantle prior to Ragnarok might be problematic. (Neall) [158]

Q: So... I could be the reincarnation of Achilles or a deified Roman emperor? (Kazorh)

A: Yes. Those are actually pretty good examples. (Neall) [159]


Q: Are Callings paths that are used to measure a scion's growth along a mythic archetype? (KingCarnival)

A: Yes. Scions can further define the Calling to suit their particular expression of divine nature, providing additional motifs and themes for Knacks and Purviews. (Neall) [160]


Q: Any thoughts on how to address Olodumare/Olorun/Olofi, Ometeotl, Ahura Mazda, Gitchi Manitou, Mungu, Unkulunkulu, and other "Great Spirit" type distant creator gods, often honored by the respective Pantheons as the highest divinity? (glamourweaver)

A: Yeah, a few, but none I'm really willing to detail out yet. (Neall) [161]


Q: How far are you willing to detail? How about instead of a Creator of the Universe type of god..would you be willing to address someone more minor, like say...Deimos and his god of Dreadness? When I made a stab at him before, it worked out to RAW: a bunch of Social knacks or the social knacks and the well done homebrew Emotion Purview from Brent Not Broken. (Achilles)

A: Gods still go along a Legend 8-12 scale, but not every Scion's parent is a 12. There's a way for gods to act with a degree of omnipotence they don't usually possess, hearkening back to a Mythic Era. And yeah, I liked the Emotion Purview, and there should be something similar for Scions and Gods who embody concepts and emotions. (Neall)

I've been wondering how relationships between pantheons are going to be treated in this edition. In 1st edition it was all based on rivalry. Pantheons all seemed a bit racist and isolationist towards one another and it just boggles my mind. I mean what do you think is going to happen when you put scions into teams where they face life and death together fighting a war? Strong bonds and emotions are going to form when someone saves your life in most cases. But if scions of different pantheons want to carry their eventual relationships to the point of having children…then most discussions got to 'you can't have dual heritage' or "There is no way the head of your pantheon would let that happen..huge political mess." (Achilles)

It's still a huge political mess, but I'm of the opinion that such stories are more fun to play through than to outright forbid.

Pantheons are less divine bloodlines and more socio-magical constructs within Fate, tied to a culture and the gods. However, gods themselves can belong to multiple cultures and multiple pantheons. Later, in Demigod and God, we'll detail how Scions can form their own pantheons - which is somewhat related to those Mythic acts I was talking about earlier (and that's why Crow's feathers are black). (Neall)

I mean is it just me or does it seem strange that beings that epic mental stats and literal eons of experience can't learn to work with each other except in cases where the titans are about kill everyone and everything...and then its as allies of the moment...ONLY!!! (Achilles)

There's other reasons they can't learn to work together. Being a god doesn't make you superhuman, or even a super-human. To bring back the Hera example, the goddess of marriage is always going to dislike illegitimate children, even if they're pledged to her glory after the fact. (Neall) [162]


Q: What all can you share about the reincarnation-type Scions? (GhanjiRho)

A: Dead Gods, dead heroes. It's really more about the playstyle you want to have than anything specific. The process has to be catalyzed by a shade, or it has to be helped along by various death gods if the deceased wasn't a divinity to begin with. Dead-dead gods might fall into this incarnation by default, but heroes have to undertake a process before they're reborn.

(Reborn as babies, with no memories of what happened.) (Neall)

Q: Do they get a Visitation? Birthrights? Is there some recommended minimum level of fame and Legend they should have achieved. Not gonna lie, my first thought was using this type of Scion for Romance of the Three Kingdoms characters. I figure at least Lu Bu, Cao Cao and Zhuge Liang would have sufficient Legend. So would Guan Yu, but he's already a God. (GhanjiRho)

A: They do get a Visitation (potentially from themselves), but they don't usually start with Birthrights, having to make do on loaned pieces of power. Old Birthrights of their previous life resonate with their divine souls, though.

Zhuge Liang would've been a sorcerer, though yeah, he's a good target for reincarnation as a Scion. (Neall) [163]


Q: Oh is Legend a thing that can be bought with XP or more of a GM assigned level-up? (KingCarnival)

Q: Question , which has been nagging me for some time. Will Legend/Fate stay tied to the story first, or will it change into something else?
By which mean. Story told by people in the setting about the PC. (zorb42)

A: It's not purchased with XP, but it's fulfilled by hitting story milestones and (very loosely) tied to XP expenditures. Fate is both a game mechanic and an in-universe thing, but Legend is representative of a thing in the setting - i.e. nobody crushes their scouter and goes HE'S OVER LEGEND 9!!!!!!! (Neall) [164]


(on being married to different gods in different pantheons)
In all seriousness, I haven't given it a ton of thought, but I might have to now. I'd suspect that it'd be treated like any mantle difference, in that the god is that thing when he's got that hat on and different when he doesn't, so the spouse is treated as estranged sometimes and sometimes not. (Neall) [165]


Q: I don't know if this has been answered or not, or if you will, but I searched through the linked website for keywords I thought might ping it, didn't find anything. Will the powers like Animal and War work like Mage Spheres, be closer to Scion 1 or something else entirely? (Dante)

A: Current models are closer to Blood Sorcery in Requiem, but you're actually on the right track, or at least following our months-old tracks. If all goes well, they should interface cleanly with Fatebinding and Paths. (Neall)

Q: Just curious Neall (and forgive me if this has already been asked) but who is your favorite god/who would you want to be a scion of, and why? (TheGraySoul)

A: Either Lugh, like Phersus [another poster], or the Dagda, mantled as the Red Man of All Knowledge. In fact, while I've mentioned it before, the Origins signature character is a Scion of the Dagda. (Neall)

Are these scions that function in the universe defined by the current Scion rules? Because that matters a lot in my choice. Some gods that might be very fun to be the kind of are bad choices because game doesn't really support their Purview. Like, say, any crafter deity.... (Ajax)

Crafter and Creation deities are tough in oScion, it's true. I asked one of the Sardonyx authors to prototype out a Scion-style crafting subsystem and she went absolutely bananas and did a fabulous job above and beyond the expectations and mandate I set for her. I expect that fertility, creation, and crafter deities will have a lot more to do as an integral part of a band.

Oh, and to reinforce someone above - yeah, emotional deities can be a thing, though it's filtered through Callings and Legend. Brigid's association with fire as inspiration and poetic elegance is such. (Neall)

Q: Not sure it’s been asked of you Neal, although I think it has been mentioned before. Is there going to be any rules, boons for vampire style combination boons (e.g. she who has Earth and Fire could become a volcano goddess and control magma? (Achilles)

A: Yes, you can combine otherwise distinct Purview expressions like that, expressed through motifs granted via Birthrights, Knacks, Callings, Paths and Legend. I know that seems like a lot, but you can affect how you do things a lot of ways. (Neall) [166]


I wonder if the tiers will factor in. I've always thought that an appropriate model would be for heroes to have mythic tools that let them channel the Purviews in specific ways suitable to the relic in question; for demigods to internalize aspects of the Purviews as discrete internal powers, and for gods to be able to command the Purviews in a manner not unlike Mage's Spheres. That is, the higher you go, the fewer restrictions you have. (Dataweaver)

That's not a bad supposition! (Neall) [167]


Q: (CycloneJoker)

I wanted to ask something regarding goddesses. A friend of mine was rather annoyed with Scion 1e due to its tendency to be short on granting physical Epic Attributes (aside, occasionally, from Epic Dexterity) to the purviews of female deities, even when those goddesses were explicitly war goddesses storied for battle prowess.

Now, I know that the StoryPath system is going to be doing away with Epic Attributes in favor of its own method of representing capabilities of that magnitude, but even so--will we get to see the ladies kick a little bit more ass directly in this edition than last time?

A: Oh, yes. Women of all types will kick ass in the new edition. Moreover, even if your divine mother really doesn't support a lot of fighting - like, say, Hera, who got Athena to do her spear-throwing for her - that doesn't mean a Scion of Hera wouldn't herself have significant battle prowess. Ancestry in this edition gives you a bonus and a boost during your early years, but doesn't influence or constrain development over the course of the character's life, like Favored Purviews and Attributes did. (Neall) [168]


Q: Is any consideration being given to historical setting books? Or to a book on games in the mythological periods of the source material? (Lokisenna)

A: Not at the moment. It's something I've considered for later books and further down the line - a "Dark Eras" style book for Scion, with the Aesir in the Viking Age, or the Theoi during the reign of Julian. But that's 3+ years down the line, after all the cores are out. (Neall) [169]


Q: Will the Kamuy get a mention anywhere? (omenseer)

A: Most likely. I'm instructing the writers to feel free to name-drop pantheons in relation to the core that aren't necessarily detailed yet; the instructions on how to build a pantheon in Origin and Demigod should give folks all the tools they need to write up whatever pantheons they like. (Neall) [170]


Q: I saw in the previous questions thread questions mentioning of having purely roman gods and even Etruscan ones in the Theoi. Will you look at other pop culture works dealing with the differences in how the gods were portrayed in greek and roman myths respectively like the Heroes of Olympus book series? Second question will nation gods like Britannia, Roma and those introduced in the 1e companion book. While not a lot of people liked it that is what mythological gods were after all a representation of the societal values of the culture they spawned from. The last question or more of a plea really.....can you please have The Citizen in there? He is wonderful (Caedus)

A: I'm not actually beyond putting in gods like Brittannia, Columbia, Marianne, or Rodina Mat; but in this case, they'd be part of Scion's universe (the former three as Goddesses of Liberty and Scions of Athena).

In this case, these goddesses get a pass because of imagery they evoke. Even then, it's mostly my own attraction to the concept and imagery, and a desire to enrich Scion's own universe and show the progression of Scions outside the pantheon structure, rather than any actual attempt to adhere to mythology.

In other words, those creations, while fictional, get a pass in my book because they at least evoke divine imagery, Greco-Roman concepts, and make a functional point within the setting. There's a strong likelihood of them appearing in a stretch goal or Companion book, so you can use or not use them to your heart's content. But no, sadly, The Citizen doesn't count for any of these things, so he's in the prior edition. He could still, however, be an archetypal god you create in a past setting or decide to move your character towards. (Neall) [171]


Q: Since I am a stickler for both antagonists and redeemable antagonists (I find those who can seek peaceful existence and choose not to are a meaningful form of despicable), can I ask what the Titanic Virtues are? (Leliel)

A: I actually really liked glamourweaver's list from [above]. (Neall)

Q: Since I am a therianthrope fan, would a Benandanti (good walker; an Italian sect of peasant mystics that would astrally project themselves as riding on or as beasts to fight wicked spirits of famine-often held to be a strange form of true werewolf) be possible to play as, and under which line (Origins, Hero, Demigod)? (Leliel)

A: Origins, though they could make appearances at the Hero level. (Neall) [172]


Q: 1. Will there be rules for making firearms useful past Hero level?
2. Can we get more sample relics per Pantheon? (Mangle77)

A: 1. Yes. Something like Eric's Giantsbane would be putting out the equivalent of tank rounds, fired from (and with the speed of) a revolver at demigod level.
2. Yes. (Neall)

Q: Will the Relics Rules Change?
will there still be flaxible enought so you can make anything? (alfanumerico)

A: Yes and kinda. They're actually way more integral to how you use your Purviews and express them than previously. In the prior edition, my Scion of Lugh had a pierced ear and an earring made of a drop of molten gold cooled with purified water that gave him access to Sun, Fire, and Water.

It's a neat piece of fiction, if I do say so myself, but it was purely to enable access to those Purviews. In this edition, his relic would probably cost a little less than standard, because it doesn't actually provide a method by which to express your Purviews except via very subtle effects. Eric's Giantsbane, by contrast, shoots lightning and drowns out sound with thunder, and could - as Eric grows in power - make really broad, destructive changes to weather conditions. (Neall)

Q: We just played through eternal lies from pelgrane Press, converting it to scion and using scion as our background setting. Any change we Will see Big, chunky, and large scion campaigns ? (Plotinus)

A: It's my hope to do so, yes, as books subsequent to the cores. Something like Eternal Lies or the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane are two good examples of what I'd like to do; probably something to do with the Keepers of the World, who are my very favorite antagonist group. (Neall) [173]


In the newer edition, it'll be harder to consider mortal authorities completely irrelevant (though they pretty much are) and even gods can't exactly ignore the World. (Neall) [174]


Q: Does this ideology [re: Relics] also apply to the other Birthrights? Most Followers/Creatures became obsolete around Demigod. Guide was just meh in my opinion and Sanctum/Avatar were window dressing at best. I'm hoping that the other Birthrights remain viable throughout your scion's life. (Achilles)

In theory, yes, though only Relics are used to actually channel Purviews.

I've got some ideas for Sanctum, though.

Avatar (which is renamed in this edition) is still only available to gods, and has some really interesting applications for play considering the mantles I've been talking about. I've been talking a lot to the writers of Imperial Mysteries for Mage: the Awakening. (Neall) [175]


Q: Can you elaborate a little bit about [Purviews]? Come on, just a little bit. (Phersus)

A: I want Purviews to be far more flexible than they were previously, yet still intuitive for new players to use. We're trying to do this by (ironically) constraining them a little. Callings and relics tie into your Purview expression, and into the Knacks and Boons that stem from said Purviews. (Neall)

Q: Also, a Scion Kickstarter was a thing already, am i right here? (Phersus)

A: Not yet. Probably next year [ed note: ie, 2016], assuming nothing changes (which it always could). (Neall)

Q: Now I know you can't answer with exact numbers but, assuming an above average amount of delays, roughly how long can we expect to wait between each of the four main books? A year? more less? (vonpenguin)

A: Assuming an above average amount of delays, I'd like there to be 9 months between core releases. (Neall)

Q: Also, will it be possible to start a character at hero? I love the idea of origins but am having some trouble thinking of interesting ways of having a band of pre visitation scions form when they are probably only at oWOD hunter levels of knowing what the heck is going on. (Complete assumption on that part.) (vonpenguin)

A: Yes, you can start at Hero level.

Pre-Visitation Scions can be anything from having no knowledge of mythology and no outside knowledge other than coping with parental abandonment issues to a Scion raised within a cult who knows full well who and what their parents are to a Scion raised on nothing but mythology - like growing up in a settlement within a Terra Incognita, like the Nonecy of Avalon or Paititi. (Neall) [176]


Q: I know I may get attacked for this but will Atlantis be mentioned at all in 2E or avoided completely? (Dioscuri)

No attacks here!

The Atlantis of 1e will not be returning, no. There may be a more classical variant.

The Atlantean gods might return as a stretch goal some day in the future, but not anytime soon. (Neall) [177]


Q: A question that always lingered on my mind: What about Apotheosis? Not for Scions but for mere mortals who one way or another managed to be regarded as gods? Would it be possible for them to gain legend and, given enough time, ressources and probably luck, ascend to actual gods? (Asmael)

A: No. Such a mortal might become a Scion through means, but mere mortal apotheosis isn't possible in the game. Mortals have options, though. (Neall) [178]


Q: Instead of redoing Ragnarok, is there consideration for other books along that scope of fleshing out other pantheons? I've already done my own for the Greeks but would love to see one for pantheons that receive less love. (Achilles)

A: Possibly in the future. We've got a lot of pantheons to go through, though. (Neall) [179]


Q: A bit of an oddball question: What is Scion's stance toward the mythic past vs. the historic past? How true is our own anthropologically reconstructed early history (for example, the work that's been done to reconstruct the Proto-Indo-European religion) in the context of the setting? Obviously, it's only conjecture in real life, but the evidence is still well-considered. Scion, though, is in a place to make statements for the purpose of its own history. (Lokisenna)

A: I want to give this a far more considered answer in Scion's setting chapters. However, in short? Scion prioritizes the mythic past over the historic past. Aeneas, son of Aphrodite and last son of Troy, founded the family that led to Romulus-who-became-Quirinus. The Kurukshetra War of the Mahabharata was an epic struggle of demigods in the Kuru Kingdom. The Proto-Indo-European religion, as we knew it, largely didn't exist. While the pantheons are living, growing, changing and - occasionally - dying entities, they are not the same as our own anthropologically reconstructed history. (Neall) [180]

This is what I expect, and of course, is appropriate. It has given me an idea for homebrew Indo-European gods arriving and declaring the "subsequent" pantheons to be imposters, though. Might be a decent campaign seed. (Lokisenna)

There's some rough edges to sand down in that approach, but if we went the other way, I think it'd be a very different game. While the mantle provides some warping of identity due to long-term Fatebinding, and while some aspects of a god's memory and history might also be altered by this effect, we've got to draw the line. "A myth is a true story that may or may not have happened." And while Zeus could plausibly be Tinia and Jupiter and still be three different phases of the same entity, I feel less certain about Dyēus or Dis Pater or Dyauṣ Pitār. (Well, probably not Dyēus.)

However.

The idea of the Proto religions being the original concepts of less-polished gods is really a difference in mechanical and conceptual degree than baseline Scion, not in kind. Turning that dial up to 11 is something I might want to explore in a later supplement for players who prefer a game like that. (Neall) [181]


Q: Are poisons going to be reworked and made a viable threat. A few people in our group investing in both plant and animal purviews have tried going down this path with a number of character concepts but in the end poisons basically only hurt regular humans and animals. There was no real way to eventually attempt something like Jörmungandr/Titanspawn venom level of effect and the other damage/effects listed on Hero pg 182 were weak/unusable (Achilles)

A: Don't I know it. Yeah, I want poisons to be threatening, and those Purviews to be effective. (Neall) [182]


Q: Query. I've heard that the system won't use a traditional 'hit point' style damage system. How will the new damage system work? I noticed in the second teaser that using Medicine can remove Bleeding or Impairments - is it based on Conditions? Do successful hits impose hindering Conditions? Also curious how Vitality would weigh into a system like that. (gyre)

A: The system is indeed similar to hindering Conditions caused by successful hits; Vitality, in this case, would allow you to shake off some of the more damaging hits, convert them to a lesser form, or push through despite damage (walking on broken legs, etc.). (Neall) [183]


Q: What is the order in which the content of a Scion book is written. I would assume that Scion: Origin is a little different as the Storypath system it will be based on is still in production/testing. But for future books does it start with writing fluff and lore then move on to mechanics and crunch based on that fluff? or is it the other way around with crunch and mechanics being the starting place and fluff and lore later written to match the mechanics? or a combination of both? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: Oh, man, that's a long answer. The short answer is that "fluff" and "crunch" are generally intermixed and will coexist within a chapter. (Neall)

(discussing the difference between religion and mythology)
This nonbeliever doesn't see a distinction. Neither most believers I know except when talking about other faiths. (Chattnos)

A religion is a culture that preserves a faith; a mythology directly addresses the subjects of that faith. Scion deals with the direct subjects of that faith, although the cults and religions that grow up around those subjects are also addressed and a focus of the game (in a change from 1e, because though it's not something your characters necessarily have to interact with, I find it hard to believe that Thor doesn't care for his followers, and how your characters deal with their place in established religions is a thing).

In the real world, and speaking as a believer myself, religions have a lot of cultural influences going into them and influencing the way they see their subjects. In Scion, while that's still true, it's more proactive because you're able to affect that cultural change yourself, and the religious change is a reaction to what you're doing. Not only are the subjects of the religions actual actors and have a direct hand in their fate, but just as the gods of Scion aren't the true gods of religions, the religions of Scion aren't quite true versions of themselves (inasmuch as such a thing could be created and represented). (Neall) [184]


I'm still waiting for Neall to give his full explanation of how things like Christianity's mythology fit into Scion 2e (Dataweaver)

You probably won't get a full explanation until the book itself. Scion's World is based on our world, albeit with subtle differences (like the small matter of all mythologies being true). The Abrahamic religions might be relatively unchanged, but the mythologies behind them would be significantly altered.

If the Abrahamic faiths can still be in The Wicked + the Divine, I don't see any reason why they can't be in Scion, though I'll go into it more at length in the book. (Neall) [185]


Current models are closer to Blood Sorcery in Requiem, but you're actually on the right track, or at least following our months-old tracks. If all goes well, they should interface cleanly with Fatebinding and Paths. (Neall)

Q: Again static or dynamic version? (Chattnos)

Yes? what I was understanding Neall to say is that Heroes have access to something akin to what Mage would call "static", whereas Gods have access to what Mage would characterize as "dynamic". (Dataweaver)

Sort of both, but yes, this is on the right track. (Neall) [186]


Q: From earlier comments about relics it sounds like they grow in power with the hero. is this 1) a representation of the Hero (e.g. Eric goes from Hero to Demigod and therefore can use his relic to greater effect because he himself is capable of more), 2) the relic growing with the character and just being able to do more (sort of like a limited npc) or 3) Eric put more points into Gianttsbane and therefore it can do more? Or some combination? (Achilles)

A: It's a combination of all 3. Giantsbane will never be able to cause a soft and gentle rain, but it can probably cause tornadoes and hurricanes with enough ammo. (Neall) [187]

You also have to take into account the personality of the one using the relic.

Eric Donner tends to be a blunt force of nature like his father... so when pushed to use Giantbane to create a storm... he is more likely to go all out (and maybe a little overboard) by making a torrential rain or even a tornado than he is to create a nice gentle rain. He is many things... but subtle isn't one of them. Could he make a gentle rain? Probably not... Eric usually doesn't usually pull his punches.

Now another character with a similar relic (power wise) and a more gentle disposition is likely to be able to create that gentle rain... but by the same token probably can't create the forceful and destructive storms that Eric and his father are known for (and likely prefer). It is more about the story of the character that determines the limits of ones power... straying outside of that narrative is likely difficult. (Shadowstripe)

Yeah, Shadowstripe has the right of it. The Legend, motifs of the individual relic, and Calling/personality of the God is what alters the expression of the Purview, not anything else. (Neall) [188]


Gods, like mortals tend to fall into patterns of behavior that is difficult for them to break. Thor is a warrior, so his first instinct is to charge into battle with an enemy and pound it into the dirt. Acting outside of this is difficult for him... such as when he had to dress up as Freya to get his hammer back from the Giants... and even then, the moment he got it back, he fell back into his typical "Smash everything" routine.

For relics like Giantsbane, they are forged with a specific purpose in mind... and are even harder to use outside of that role. Even a gentle scion who uses a similar relic to call forth a gentle rain to water crops will find it difficult to get Giantsbane to summon anything less than a Torrential Rain... because that is more or less how it was meant to be used... as a warrior's weapon... not as a gardening tool. It was meant to channel the raw destructive power of the storm... not provide food or water to a nation. It is a weapon that fits the personality of the Scion it was meant for... since Eric tends to be as blunt as his father.

Now that doesn't mean that all relics will be so limited. The drums made for Amelia Battelle (Scion of Shango, Demigod pg 303) would be a more versatile relic capable of both great storms and gentle rains. This is the nature of this particular relic, to control multiple aspects of the same Purview as Giantsbane... but in a more precise manner than Giantsbane's blunt uses.

While Giantsbane may be somewhat limited in its use of abilities... it has more to do with the way its Scion chooses to use it than anything else. Could someone else use Giantsbane in a more gentle manner? Possibly, but unlikely as it isn't a tool of finesse (just how gentle do you think a hand cannon-like gun can be?). (Shadowstripe)

Once again, Shadowstripe has the right of it.

I mentioned this before[...], but the first relic I ever had was for a Scion of Lugh; it was two drops of molten and bronze cooled in pure water worn on a leather thong about the neck, to give Sun, Earth, Fire, and Water. I still think it's neat, but I never really cared about the thing, and it wasn't truly a symbol of my character's Legend, the way Apollo's plectrum, arrows, and kithara represented him. (Neall)

It is a fairly dramatic change to how your PC's powers worked. I'm really trying not to be very negative, but the more I listen about this information, the less I hear about the Scion game system I love. (ArthurHansen)

Well, I'll be blunt: there's a lot about this edition that represents a dramatic change. I have to look at the game as building a really robust and diverse line of roleplaying in the World of Scion, and it can't be built on a house of sand.

The most attractive element of Scion 1e was the concept, and in my opinion the mechanics of the prior edition sometimes didn't enable or express that concept, in whole or in part because the system itself got in the way. Team Scion isn't so much addressing those mechanical issues as bypassing them altogether by using a new system. Everything has to be rebuilt from the ground up, so why not avoid the classic problems entirely? The way relics work - integrating with your Callings and Legend to provide a new motif for your Purviews - are another way of showing that. (Neall)

Q: How easy it will be to hack it for other settings? (Odrysian)

A: Should be fairly easy. "Other settings" is a design goal going into the core. (Neall) [189]


I will note, though, that a primary source of inspiration for the new edition is The Wicked + The Divine (Neall)

This quote has pretty much given you my full faith. I kinda really love this comic and as such, im really pleased about this development. (Grimangel53)

I'm also a huge fan of Gillen's run on Journey into Mystery and Pak's run on The Incredible Hercules. (Neall)

Q: the possiblity of Baal being a thing, because im a WicDiv junkie and want to see a Baal-Scion, is...? (Grimangel53)

A: Extremely high. I really want to do a Caananite pantheon. And angelic pantheon, not so much...but I will, at some future Scion panel, wear my "Lucifer Died For Our Sins" t-shirt. (Neall) [190]


Q: I too am super curious about the combat system. If players spend successes on Effects, can a player decide to spend all of their successes on inflicting a particularly serious injury, or split it between a lesser injury AND disarming his foe? Do they have to announce the Effects before rolling, or is it more cinematic in that they can decide after rolling? (gyre)

A: Right now - and this might change after more playtesting - successes are spent after rolling. (Neall)

Q: While not hard in 1e, will playing a titan scion be something mention in the starting books and will it have special rules? And not just a corrupted, but an actual scion of a titan. (omenseer)

A: Only certain Titans, like Helios. The division between God and Titan is more political than metaphysical, but there are metaphysical differences. (Neall) [191]

Q: Would a born scion of Mikaboshi be possible? (omenseer)

A: Only if the August Star of Heaven deems it dignified to manifest as a human. (Neall) [192]


Q: [...]Is there a possibility to see who works on the Scion 2e line? Not only the head developer but all contributers to the line? (Ebon Wolf)

A: Not yet! But if they want to announce themselves, they can. [ed note: this was November 2015.] (Neall) [193]


Q: I'm curious if you intend to do anything with native Australian mythology? (horngeek)

A: Yes, they're slated for God's pantheons. (Neall) [194]


Q: [...]Also: Signature characters? Yes or No? (Matt.Ceb)

A: Yes to the three on the book covers; different ones for the rest. (Neall) [195]


Q: Any chance for a Deity of Modern Concepts this time around?
As a potential supplement, at least? (Immoral Support Network)

A: Scion 2e kind of has the idea of alternate settings in mind from the get-go. Not in the base game, but it's something that's possible later, sure.

Most gods, when they're associated with concepts (a lot of times they're not), are fairly elemental: music, death, life, war. These things never change. (Neall) [196]


Q: A question for Neil, what counts as a god? I'd like to see a fairy tale version of Scion, with the catch that we're not just the children of say, Alice in Wonderland or Robinson Crusoe, to pull names out of my hat at random. But we're next in-line (or maybe competing?) to become the next Alice or Robinson, superhero legacy style. Except more so, because it's more than just a title or mantle, it's a change of existence - we become the myth for good and for bad, and in doing so, perpetuate it. Because society needs myths/narratives. (wingnut2292)

A: I know it's circular, but right now a god is god, with certain traits. Though taking on a mantle like that is certainly possible, and you could re-skin Scion to do that with some doing. (Neall)

Q: *What* is a God Mantle and how do you steal it? [I have the idea of the Mantle being something like an abstract representation/aura/fate implications of the God nature, but i'd appreciate a clear definition of it] Does it manifests as a relic, that can be stolen physically? Or is it something like a metaphor, that is won after some kind of clash or competition? (Phersus)

A: A mantle is your divine identity, the ur-identity existing within Fate from which you draw your divine power. To a certain extent, you are your mantle, and it is you, even when you can separate them. Incarnations spin out of the Mantle. Gods are far more intimately tied to their mantles than demigods and heroes; that which binds their mantle in Fate, binds them as well, and they have to be extraordinarily careful about what they do outside the identity they've made for themselves. Of course, you can have multiple mantles...

Relics can be part of a mantle. A good example is Mjolnir being part of Thor's Legend. It can be metaphorical as well, and often is, which is how Loki became associated with fire.

Scion 2e can perhaps be most fairly said to be a game about how you are defined in whole and in part by the you other people see. It's in the very name of the game - the word scion means you're descended from someone or something extremely notable, immediately casting the relationship as inferior, junior, and familial. The game is about relationships and presentation, destiny and culture, and the mantle is the final mechanical expression of that core theme. (Neall)

Q: Has anyone gotten to the point of becoming a god and siring scions, say as an ending to one game and beginning to another? My question to Neall and the board is what does it cost the parent to Visit/bring up to Demigod and then Apotheosis? (Achilles)

A: Well, not in 2e...

This brings up a little point I wanted to make: one of my quieter goals in 2e is to make each tier a sort of distinct style of play within the wider framework of Scion. You might not want to graduate to demigodhood or even godhood, as the bit about the mantle above indicates. The process of apotheosis isn't pretty often: as Divus Iulius, who had to die stabbed by his best friend to complete the ascension.

Godhood is a little different in 2e. Anyone past Legend 9 is a god, capable of siring Scions (provided they are capable of old-fashioned reproduction and not, I dunno, a serpent or a dog or a dickless corpse or something). Creating Scions via another method takes a tad more juice. (Neall)

Q: can you tell something about the Teotl pantheon purview? (Nicholas Milioni)

A: Sacrificing to the gods is part of the core cult mechanics and subsystems; I suspect most of the Teotl PSP will be about maximizing and getting more out of that particular subsystem.

PSPs typically involve things other pantheons can kinda-sorta do, but that one particular pantheon absolutely excels at. Lots of gods can shapeshift, but the Greeks turn themselves and others into clouds and animals and stars and abstract emotions like dread all the freaking time. (Neall) [197]


Q: if a god wanted to change his lifestyle,say,if a god of water and the sea eventuslly gets boring of water and sea and to do the opposite,could she find a god of the earth and become an god of Both sea and Eearth somehow?
i really would like to play a charater with that quest,changing your role,becoming something else (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Changing your mantle's associations is pretty epic, yeah. It is akin to Loki becoming God of Story rather than God of Lies [in Marvel's comics]; how do you do that when everyone knows you as a liar? And like as not, you'll never lose your prior association totally. You might become a divinity of a coastal city or the shore along with the deep ocean, but it's difficult.

More often, you'll have to live with the god you've become. Doing otherwise takes time and careful effort. (Neall) [198]

i also always saw kid loki as an awesome example of a reincanated scion (althought he started as a full blown god,albeit a infant one).
That must have happned once or twice in the scionverse,a reicarnation of a trickest god,or a blood thirsty war deity,or one of those gods that wnated blood sacrifices every sunday,and trying to find his legacy by becoming a more pacific version of the being they were reicarnated as. (Nicolas Milioni)

Reincarnation is one of the ways you can do it, since you're partially rebuilding your mantle from the ground up. (Neall) [199]

Q: Am I missing some kind implication here? So if water god wants to turn into water and earth god...doesn't she/he save up xp, buy up earth boons...do something Earth like... cause an earthquake or maybe raise a mountain in front of a bunch of people and voila...people start to associate you with this kind of stuff. Or do it like the Theoi... head off to Italy/another culture and just start off displaying those powers so in your introduction to them its always been there.

Or is it something wierder than that and after becoming a god you can't buy up purviews/gain new associateds? (Achilles)

A: Something weirder. You can broaden existing Purview associations with XP, but it's very hard to make new ones except as the story allows. This is something we'll go into a lot more depth in with the actual books. (Neall)

Q: is stealing part of someone else mantle strictly necessary? (Nicholas Milioni)

A: No. It's usually pretty hard to steal something from another god, rather than picking up a similar association. (Neall) [200]


Q: can you name one or more gods who used to be part of an pantheon,but their original pantheon died and the becane part of a new one? i know there are gods like that in the sciion books i can't seem to identify them! (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Not really. Cernunnos might qualify, with the resurrection of the Horned Man in neopaganism, but this depends on how destroyed you consider the Nemetondevos to be (their godrealms and Overworlds are gone, their terra incognita have been destroyed or colonized by other pantheons, their followers, Scions and a chunk of their gods are dead - some in the cycle of reincarnation, some just really upset and sitting in the Celtic Underworld).

Quetzacoatl hangs out a lot more with the Teotl than he does the K'uh (which is still around). Much of the Caananite pantheon (also still around) will be city and culture gods who banded together under a single banner. Some gods like Mikola Mozhaiski might've been a Scion of the Bogovi (who are, you guessed it, still extant) but he still mostly does his own thing. (Neall) [201]


Q: A question about Knacks. There are a bunch of Gun knacks, any chance of this edition either generalizing these to a more Ranged Weapon knacks or adding things like Bow & Arrow Knacks to the mix (of which I would figure there would be like ten times the number over the gun knacks). (Achilles)

A: Current Knacks don't actually tie them to specific Skills (or Attributes), but Storypath doesn't actually have Gun or Bow as separate Skills; it's all Aim. So, no matter how it shakes out, you're good. (Neall)

Q: is magic related to true names,especially stealing someone's name to be able to control the named, still a thing? (Nicholas Milioni)

A: In some pantheons, such as Egyptian, sure.

I should note that the Magic Purview is probably going to largely go away in favor of a more holistic focus on cultural magics facilitated by the Pantheon-Specific Purview. Magics in the core of Origins will be handled differently, not always in regard to Fate-only, and will be something that can be expanded upon in later books. (Neall)

Q: About sorcerers,since you mentioned they can start as rincewind and go all the way to baba yaga,do you already have a idea about how they would escalate in power,or ,mechanically speaking, can sorceres reach legend 9? (Nicholas Milioni)

A: Yeah, we've got a few ideas. (Neall) [202]


Q: are there plans for the keepers of the world to be brought back? did quetzcoatl started as part of the K'uh and then he become a Teotl? if so,how did that happen ? was it something he made happen or was it outside of his control? (Nicholas Milioni)

You can belong to multiple pantheons in the second edition.

I love the Keepers of the World, and if anything they'll be a bigger part of 2e. There's even going to be a mechanic to sort of explain their big evil plan... (Neall)

oh,and i was thinking about something you could use,just a suggestion if i may be so bold: you know the power of Reshape Shen? the one wen the chinese pantheon used to transform foreign gods in new versions? i think it'd be cool if at least some gods of all pantheons could do the same thing ,but just the most powerful gods of each pantheon though,Deities like Zeus,Ra,Danu,Odin,it just feels right that those guys could turn other immortals in something that is part of their pantheon. do you think that'd be cool? (Nicholas Milioni)

A lot of All-Mother or All-Father-class gods have the ability to invite someone into their pantheon, yeah. Since that's the level you're operating at, it's largely restricted to Legend 12. (Neall) [203]


Q: How many Callings are intended to be introduced in the core book? (KingCarnival)

A: At least ten. Creator, Guardian, Herald*, Hunter, Judge, Leader, Lover, Sage, Trickster, Warrior.

There might be an eleventh, if design moots it so. You can have more than one Calling.

*I keep wanting to use "Psychopomp" (Neall) [204]


Q: something silly tha'ts been bugging me. why is mikaboshi called the "august star of heaven" if he's a titan of darkness? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: He's the god of the Pole Star as well as chaos.

He's not a Titan in 2e, though I might reconsider and make him a Titan who's part of the pantheon (like Helios). (Neall) [205]


Q: Out of sheer curiosity, any thoughts on what Santa would be in Scion terms? A god's mantle? A legendary being? A sorcerer? (marin)

A: Probably a mantle shared between the Norse and Slavic pantheons. I'd like Mikola Mozhaiski to be in the game, at the very least. Nick probably has an obscenely high Herald Calling, with little bits of Warrior and Leader in there. (Neall) [206]


I know about the various gods taking on the forms or professions of the modern world, but they're not actually of the modern world. I think it would be a group of powerful scions that achieved Godhood fairly recently and managed to form their own pantheon. Thanks for the thing about Scire though. (ajf115)

Yes, this is precisely Scion's jam.

Scion's really about three things, to me. The first is relationships, and how who you are relates to what people in the world think of you. The second is myths in the modern day; that is to say, ancient mores and legends clashing with modern idealism and morality. The third, related to the second, is as you said - modern myth, primeval elemental associations with the world and the modern era, the synergy between what has changed in the modern era and what never changes. (Neall) [207]


Q: Is there going to be anything on gods and plants? Many gods don't only have certain Animals linked close to them in legend, but plants as well. Will that simply be something along the lines of fertility or something a bit more specific? (Asmael)

A: Gods have associations of all sorts, yeah. Doing something with the association can give you the ability to get the attention of the god (or your attention, when you are the god). (Neall) [208]


Q: can you explain how interpretatio romana happens and what it is? (Nicolas Milioni)

Interpretatio Romana - "The Roman Translation" - is what happens when two cultures meet and one of them decides the gods of the other are a mislabelling of the ones they already have. For instance, the Romans saw Oghma as how the barbaric, misinformed Celts perceived Hercules, and see also how Hermes and Thoth were equated. I can't say for sure if this phenomenon is how the Greek gods were equated to the Roman ones(Zeus to Jupiter et al)--Wikipedia certainly seems to think so, but, you know, Wikipedia--but it would be a good example. (Mockery)

A: In Scion 2e, it's sort of two distinct metaphysical processes that are labelled as one thing - two gods being tied together by Fate as rivals, and a god becoming recognized by another culture as a pantheon. (Neall) [209]


On the topic of Megas and Epics, from the Scion perspective. This isn't how Aberrant will do things, or even early Aberrant design. This is me musing on similar design challenges.

Scion and Aberrant both had the same approximate division of powers, though I'd argue Aberrant's is cleaner and more advanced despite being eight years older: you had Megas/Epics as superhuman expressions of capability, with facets/Knacks stemming from that; and you had Quantum/Legend powers and Purviews as the "flashy" superpowers. The former were generally more passive expansions of what you were capable of, while the latter were activated and beyond the scope of superhuman capability (as defined by, "what humans are capable of, but better").

Scion's gotten rid of a lot of methods from the old edition, but while we want Epics to still be in there, we're not tying them to Attributes for precisely the reason you stated - it could run contrary to character concept. Is Atlas using Physical Power when he's lifting the World, or Physical Resistance to maintain it?

So how do we work Epics - superhuman capability - back into the equation? The Scion team is looking at a few different ways to do this, and we're trying to figure out which works best in playtest. One way is to relate Epic capability to the Callings (Scion's extremely rough and muddy equivalent of Exalted Castes) and work them in through Purviews (elemental expressions of divine power); another is to simply have Epic expansions as Edges (read: Merits) that broadly expand capability, with the specific Knacks spread throughout Purviews and Callings. The why and what you're doing is probably more important than the how. (Neall) [210]


The general idea was supposed to be that each Purview had dozens and dozens of unwritten Boons. You were supposed to write your own powers. But the books didn't provide meaningful guidance or useful rubrics to do that, so it ended up being a terribly crappy system to model mythology with. (Telgar)

I'm not actually sure they were ever really meant to model that; the PSPs don't significantly branch, and a lot of Purviews become all-encompassing at higher levels (see the Animal Purview). But yes, they weren't a good system to model myth with, which is why Purviews in 2e have a very broadly applicable base power and a lot of specific, powerful Boons. (Neall) [211]


Q: Question on presentation style. In D&D4e powers and abilities have a little bit of fluff and a very mechanical, defined, consistent presentation. Maybe not the most engaging to read but clear and consistent to use in game. Vampire has flowery often quite florid powers but any given character probably only has a handful of them so it's fair enough to use them. Exalted tends to have a lot of distinct (often fairly fiddly) powers and any given player is likely to have a lot of them and to be using several of them simultaneously but it uses laguage in a similar way to Vampire.

I find this a detriment to running games of Exalted. Is there a style guide on how powers and abilities in Scion should be written? Does that guide favour having a mechanical, concise and consistent language (even if it loses some of that mythic feel) or does it favour the Vampire/Exalted style? Or does it do both? Or some other third way? (Scutarii)

A: One of the goals of the alpha is to essentially create a style guide by discovering what works and what doesn't on the micro scale before we go macro. However, in general, the base Weaving of a Purview into the World has florid language and feel, since it's partially based on the dramatic editing; currently, Knacks are written a bit more simply and directly, while Boons take a cross between the two. (Neall) [212]


Creating new subrealms and sub-pantheons is something you can do as a god. New Overworlds, pantheons, creation myths and altering the structure of the World is an appropriate end of a major, years-long epic campaign. '(Neall)

Q: would you mind explaining how creating a a new creation myth would work? (Nicolas Milioni)

A number of myths involve successive ages of humanity. The Greeks had different ages undone by the king of the gods being butchered. The Aztecs had different ages undone by the sun getting knocked out of the sky. The Navajo had different ages that were made through the people emerging from successive worlds. (griffinguy24)

A: That's actually a mechanic in the game, though after the last design discussion I think we're knocking it back to Director advice.

The actual Creation Myth mechanics are something in God, for when you make a new pantheon. (Neall) [213]


(on playtesting the alpha at MidWinter Con in January 2016)

"Loki? Oh, that asshole."*

The two games were really well. The player characters fought and investigated their way through Washington, D.C., to the towers in the suburb of Rosslyn. One group managed to break the ensorclement around the giant Eggthér by pointing out that Fjalar had not crowed, nor had the horn of Heimdall sounded, so this couldn't be Fimbulwinter. The other group decided to stop the myth-fueled snowstorm that the giant was inadvertently causing by melting and refreezing the snowdrift atop the skyscraper and then pushing him off the building (try explaining a three-ton corpse in the middle of a street). The Egyptian Scion NPC only died a horrible death in one of the sessions.

Storypath is rock-solid as an engine, but the Scion-specific systems like freeform Purviews, regaining Legend, and implementing Virtues need a lot of work. Still, I think all the ideas are there.

* The god writeup for Loki for the two PC Scions of Loki starts with, "This asshole." The phrase cropped up in both sessions. (Neall) [214]

Q: Will the playtest adventure reach the general public (KingCarnival)

A: Yes! I will be cleaning it up myself. (Neall) [215]


I think the Mortal core book and Hero will be coming out at the same time, but i could be wrong about that. (Úlfhéðnar)

They are. The term "mortal" is perhaps a misnomer. Changelings, kitsune-spawn, pre-Visitation Scions... (Neall) [216]

Q: That's changelings as in the original meaning, right? Switching a faerie for a human baby? Is that limited to the British & Irish faerie races? (marin)

A: Yes, and probably not - it's a thing in Scandinavian and Nigerian cultures (though I'd want to avoid the ogbanje for other reasons). (Neall) [217]

As far as im aware, there is no tradition of the Scandinavian Alfar performing changeling behavior. Certainly dangerous and at times malicious towards mankind, and also seductive and sexual (there are many half elfs scattered about, but these tend to be heroes and a source of prestige) but not any baby swapping. (Úlfhéðnar)

I seem to recall something about dwarves, trolls, or Svartalfar swapping, or at least abducting, human children. (Mangle77)

Nothing comes to mind immediately, which isn't to say that there definitely are not any. It sounds more like something from a later era, more of a folkloric Huldufolk sort of image of them from post-christian times, probably with some significant cultural admixture from Continental fairy tales. (Úlfhéðnar)

There's a few mentions on Wikipedia and other places. But even if it's just immigrant stories or a relic of Christianization, I'm actually mostly fine with that; consider the idea that cultural admixture, like interpretatio Romana, has a cause-and-effect relationship in Scion's World. (Neall) [218]


I've been rereading the Scion previews and comments and I've been wondering how accessible Terra Incognita (and for that matter, Overworld and Underworld) are going to be. From my vague and distant memories of first edition, Terra Incognita were only really accessible if you had a psychopomp Demigod on your team. I know they're going to be more prominent in second edition, but I'd like to know more. (Tiresias)

They can be accessed by anyone who's aware of how to get there and has a Legend score, although gods (often, though not necessarily Heralds) can enable access and traversal by mere mortals. Mortals can, and do, emigrate and immigrate back and forth between the World and Terra Incognita; one of the alpha characters spent much of her formative years hiding from Loki in empty Vanaheim, while another was raised in a village dedicated to Agni (called "Potemkin World", though that's not culturally apropos). (Neall) [219]


[...If] I were to make a guide on the blog or a little PDF product on creating your own fictional pantheon rather than adapting an already extant historical culture, then the Atlanteans would be a prime target. Scion 2e's able to handle fictional pantheons. (Neall) [220]

There are better fictional pantheons out there than the Atlanteans. Many of them on expired copyrights even or with holders willing to work with respectful fans. (Ajax)

I'm aware. It's something we've talked about for 2e, given that it's no longer a limited line. Stretch goal pantheons may or may not include fictional pantheons, simply because I'm not liable to use a fictional pantheon in a core book.

However, the Atlanteans have a distinct advantage, in that they're wholly fictional - and if we're talking about PCs creating their own pantheon, they remain a good example. By Plato's account, Atlas and his family are assuredly Scions, and might've ascended to Godhood. Due to the way Apotheosis and pantheon creation works in 2e, Atlantis is a good sample choice for other "what if" reasons.

In Scion 2e canon, though, Atlantis is a locked-off Terra Incognita. Getting there via ritual or magics will probably get you to a spot that looks like a much bigger version of the island in Tomb Raider, except with lots of Grecian ruins instead of Japanese ones. (Neall) [221]


Q: I know it might be hard not to spoil in answering this, but do you have any idea of how the characterization of Athena has changed between editions? What's she like in Scion 2e? (Leetsepeak)

A: Athena and Minerva is the Greco-Roman goddess of war (strategy), crafts, wisdom, courage, civilization, mathematics, the city of Athens, and olive oil. In terms of Callings, she heavily favors Sage and Warrior.

Athena presents a challenge for the designers, in that we don't have Epic Intelligence anymore (though the Physical Epics have been subsumed into Purviews) but that "wisdom" and "mathematics" is difficult to adequately interpolate in our design schema. Gods, over a very broad and reductive view of mythology, tend to be a lot more physically powerful than humanity, yet while they're often wiser or more far-seeing they're not always much smarter. Athena, though, does tend to be really damn smart.

Ultimately I'm going for a brute-force and low-powered solution - she's "only" got superhuman Attributes, specialties, and Knacks to help her with knowledge-based rolls - and she works that through various Purviews like Passion to kindle clear thought and reason in others. (Neall) [222]

Q: Awesome! Cool to hear about how she was modeled, though I will admit I was more asking about her personality/behavior. Like how does Scion 2e portray her, or what notes are there on that? (Leetsepeak)

A: Athena is one of the best models for a high-rating Guide. She's friendly, in the same sense a helpful aunt is. (Neall) [223]


I have come begging for more wisdom!

Q: 1- What's the narrative or thematic difference between Scions who pick up a large number of purviews and those who specialize? 2- How would Demigods and Gods who want to dip their toe into peripheral purviews make use of low-level purview effects that are designed to work at the Hero level? (Tiresias)

A: They're much better at broad, weak effects over a big list than specialized and powerful effects. There's a freeform aspect to using Purviews besides using them like Boons (formerly called weaving, now called miracles) that allows you to burn Legend for, well, free-form effects. Boons are more specialized and powerful expressions of the Purview.

So, at Demigod and God, you've got way more Legend to burn and can use your free-form effects in more variable ways, but you're basically locked to dipping your toe in and burning a ton of Legend rather than refining your process and deepening your competence. (Neall) [224]

Q: So would it be accurate to compare the new Purview system to Mage: The Awakening? With Miracles resembling more "on the fly" spells and Boons resembling rotes?

I mean I'm sure there are differences, but that sounds pretty similar to me. (unnatural1)

A: It's not quite as freeform, but there are similarities in the current alpha build. I might compare it more to Dark Ages Mage. The Purviews are more heavily weighted towards Boons (there's more flexibility and raw power to them, and more of them, than previously), but the freeform is for effects not covered by Boons but make sense to perform ("I have absolute command of Frost, so can I just snuff out the fireplace?") or if a Scion wants to replicate a Boon they haven't selected (in which case it generally costs more Legend). (Neall) [225]


Q: How are you guys planning to work with Pantheons who don't necessarily fit into Scion's outlines? For example, the Tuatha who went off and died in a majority of their Major Gods, and who did not have any real 'Overworld' equivalent instead retiring to something more like a host of Terra Incognita? (Watcher)

A: Death isn't always a stumbling block for a lot of gods in 2e. It sucks, but there's a few ways to get over it.

While we're still in the process of outlines and writing, right now, Terra Incognita are really the only difference in terms of planes or dimensions in Scion 2e (well, the Underworld, though even that's up for debate in terms of something like Mag Mell or Elysia). The Overworld and the Underworld are more like frequencies Terra Incognita tune to. Most Underworlds, Overworlds, and connected Godrealms could fairly be described as Terra Incognita that have been colonized by, aspected to, or linked to the World via association with a respective Pantheon. It's possible to stick to various Overworlds and traverse them without crossing back into the World via the axes mundi, though this is much easier in the Underworld.

(also, you'll show up in the Underworld if you die, so)

Strange Sites and Touchstones remain relatively unchanged, though Touchstones don't lead to the ideal of a place and Scions can themselves be Touchstones. Strange Sites are maybe a proto-Terra Incognita.

And yes, this does change the shape of the Second Titanomachy, in terms of Primordials assaulting the Overworld. (Neall) [226]

Gotta say, I really like that explanation Neall. I really like the explanation of Godrealms / Overworlds being Terra Incognita that have been more 'developed', I'd expect sometimes literally in the case of Olympus where it has a bunch of buildings on it. (Watcher)

Well, the Four Cities of Ireland are another example, though the Tuatha are really crappy at tuning Terra Incognita to the Overworld. Still holdin' out for Ireland! (Neall)

Q: You mentioned the Primordials assaulting the Overworld, which is on the topic of another question I had but thought it was a bit out there until you said that. Are you guys going to break Primordial entities (Ouranos, Gaia, Danu, Ymir, Ame-no-Minakanushi, for example) up from Titans? (Watcher)

A: Yes. (Neall)

Q: Or is Primordial a new less-Greek focused term for what was called 'Titan'? I've got a terrible suspicion you've mentioned this before and it may have just totally slipped my mind. (Watcher)

A: While Titans are more strongly tied to Primordials, the difference is largely more political than it is metaphysical. (Though it is still very metaphysical.) (Neall)

Q: On the topic of the Second Titanomachy, are you guys continuing with Titans being always antagonistic forces? (Watcher)

A: No. The thing about Titans in 2e is that they're generally not tied to thoughts of humanity or human ways of thinking (which is why they tend to be large in stature in some myths) as they are expanding their Purview (which most of them are singularly focused to), and they tend to just sort of gently sandblast the area they're in with theurgic energy. Take Helios - generally pretty tight with the Olympinas, but he literally has the aureole of the Sun around his head, which is really crappy for a whole host of reasons. Helios can't really understand what the big deal is, even if mortals cry when he wanders into view, shield their eyes and cry some more, and then slowly get sunburnt to death. For that reason, a lot of Titans stick around Terra Incognita, of which there are limited supplies.

Titanspawn are generally either direct creations of a Titan or Titanic servant, or a Legendary Race adapted to living within the magic of a Titan. It, too, is really more of a political designation. (Neall) [227]


Q: Since I'm desperately trying to procrastinate away a reading I've got to do, I've got one last question. You've been asked before what your favorite Purview is, my question is what Purview are you feel has shaped up / is shaping up the best? Not necessarily your favorite, but the one you feel that has just hit all of the nails on the head in terms of function and mythic connection? I only ask since my favorite Purview from the revision my friends and myself have made is nowhere close to the one I'm most 'pleased' with in actual design. For us, Darkness just turned out spectacularly, despite it barely ever being used in our games in the almost half-decade of playing together. (Watcher)

A: I can't decide whether Darkness should incorporate Moon too.

I really like what Vance is doing with the new Aesir PSP (Wyrd). Fire was coming along well, but now that we've decided to incorporate Passion, I'm wondering if a number of Fire Boons wouldn't be more appropriate there. But I think Stars is my favorite. (Neall) [228]


I'm [...] a big fan of how Forge is turning out, if only because our alpha crafting rules are suitable for making all kinds of stuff (like planning situations rather than actually constructing an artifact). (Neall) [229]


Q: Is Forge going to be able to do any work with... I guess non-physical works of art? Poetry, music, oral-storytelling, that sort of thing? Those things can be exceptionally tricky to represent in a Deity's repertoire. Especially when it is something that is obviously important to the culture (Susano-O inventing poetry [localized cult center myth, so that's one of the 'grain of salt' myths], Cairbre inventing Satire, Apollo serenading others with his music, Dionysus being a patron of acting) but not particularly mechanics friendly. (Watcher)

A: I suspect poetry, music, skaldin', and the like are going to be a weird intersection of Forge and Passion Purviews and Sage and Lover Knacks. I may have to make a few Edges for that sort of thing specifically. (Neall) [230]


Q: So how many purviews are there in total at the moment? (KingCarnival) [ed note: as of February 2016]

A: 23 General Purviews and 10 PSPs, though 4 GPs probably won't be in Hero, or will be stretch goal content. This differs from pantheon stretch goals in that they will, eventually, be published, just possibly not in Hero. Although, one of them is the GP for city gods, so. (Neall) [231]


Athena presents a challenge for the designers, in that we don't have Epic Intelligence anymore (though the Physical Epics have been subsumed into Purviews) but that "wisdom" and "mathematics" is difficult to adequately interpolate in our design schema. Gods, over a very broad and reductive view of mythology, tend to be a lot more physically powerful than humanity, yet while they're often wiser or more far-seeing they're not always much smarter. Athena, though, does tend to be really damn smart.

Ultimately I'm going for a brute-force and low-powered solution - she's "only" got superhuman Attributes, specialties, and Knacks to help her with knowledge-based rolls - and she works that through various Purviews like Passion to kindle clear thought and reason in others. (Neall)

Well, if there's anything that just un-sold this version for me, this is it. I'm not a fan of systems that basically make physical powers the only viable thing. (ArthurHansen)

Arthur, man, I feel like there's literally nothing I can write that you won't take out of context and in the worst possible manner.

There's other ways of doing omniscience, far sight, and cunning in the game than Epic Intelligence, and those mostly belong in the Sage Calling. There are powers of prophecy and divination, and wisdom and cunning, will be represented. But, no, sorry, unless they're gods of genius or they were geniuses before apotheosis - like Zhuge Liang or Imhotep - you're not going to see many powers of super-intelligence. (Neall) [232]


So no, everything I'm hearing now is 'this is only sorta related to Scion 1E, but we are going to call it 2E.' Change for change's sake, etc. It very well could be fun, but at this point it's so different you might as well rename it. I was really looking forward to 2E originally, but the more I hear the less invested I'm in. (ArthurHansen)

If there's any accusation I hate more than "change for change's sake" I'd really love to hear it, so I can hate it more.

Scion's going to be nine years old as of April, and - to be totally blunt - it has some deep-seated structural issues. I can't fix the issues in it without ripping the entire engine out, which we were doing anyways for a whole host of other reasons. While rebuilding it, I decided to take Knacks off Attributes and focus them on divine archetypes and the archetypal image, while broadening out the list of Purviews. The way we're doing the divide means that transhuman physical potential isn't tied to any specific archetype or personage, while gods of wisdom and intelligence have a very specific archetype (the Sage). Add to that I also wanted to largely avoid Reed Richards-as-God outside of specific Shards, and the old way of doing Epic Intelligence was gone.

Arthur, we'll be putting up parts of the system for free in the Alpha. There will be backer drafts when this goes to KS. You don't like it, don't buy it. (Neall) [233]


Q: As a curiosity, if the game system going to be so heavily defensive oriented? Specificially is bashing damage going to be such a bad idea? As stands a weapon like a bo staff or a shortstick is going to be a really bad idea unless you have a phenomenal amount of Epic Strength to force damage through, or you invest in the weapon being able to do Lethal damage. (Squee)

A: We don't have bashing damage. (Neall) [234]


Q: Sooo.... I was running a Scion campaign, with games every other week, for about 6 months or so. We eventually dropped it when we realized the EXP required to get from Hero to God would require us to play the existing campaign for around an additional 5-7 years non-stop. That is a long time in terms of a single campaign, IMO... Was I doing something wrong and will this be an issue in the new version? (Feonorx)

A: That's how it was in 1e, yes.

2e is moving to a different system. It's got a linear experience system currently, but I'm also investigating a milestone-type experience system to reflect shifting competence.

Either way, Legend won't be paid for with XP. (Neall) [235]


Q: I'm getting the impression that as time passes and a hero ascends towards godhood they kind of calcify in their roles and what they're capable of, or at least what they have influence over.

Is this correct? (Mockery)

A: More or less. It becomes much more involved to change, due to Fatebindings and the fact that your power flows from the divine archetypal image you've created. Changing means getting your hands dirty with mortals, and that could lead to much bigger unintended consequences.

There's a reset button, but most Gods don't care for it, and there's no guarantee (and a lot stacked against) things happening differently the second time around. (Neall)

Q: Any info you can give us on how fast you think players will be moving up in legend and tiers of play? Like exalted is currently running on the assumption you go from essence 1 to 5 in 60 sessions. (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: I'd like players to hit divinity after about a year of solid weekly play of 4-5 hour sessions, and "cap out" at Legend 12 about six months later. Once you're a God, though, you can jockey for position in a pantheon and potentially lose Legend (especially if you're Tuatha), so there's what the MMOs refer to as "endgame content". There's a few capstone arcs to God, especially with making your own pantheon and Creation Myth. (Neall) [236]

(re the Tuatha)
Damn it, Neall! You can't drop something like that on us and not explain! It's immoral! (Tiresias)

They're a restless bunch. You see how many kings they go through? Questing and wanderlust is in their DNA. (Neall) [237]

I feel Heracles reaaaally should be in the Core Dodekatheon Gods first presented. His popularity is comparable to Thor and Loki. And if he was actually in the core I feel a lot more players would be a Scion of Herakles. That Said didn't he have all three Physicals favored? Seemed a bit much also giving him Dex... (Eldagusto)

I understand some of the reasoning for it. He literally created the Olympic games and set the standard for the ancient events. He was also really good with a bow. I suppose they could have left it at having completely blown a lot of xp on Arete but it would be plain old cheaper to just have a good Dex to cover all of that. (Achilles)

He most likely would have all three Physical Epics favored, yeah - and honestly, that's about it. He might also have Stars associated with him, but I doubt he has any Boons. (Neall) [238]


Q: Here is my question though: Can you tell us what purviews will be included in the core rules as of now [February 2016]. That would be fantastic. Thank you very much. (Blackfryre) [239]

A: Beasts, Darkness, Death, Earth, Epic Dexterity, Epic Might, Epic Stamina, Fertility, Fire, Forge, Fortune, Frost, Health, Illusion, Moon, Sky, Sun, War, Water. There's four more I've got planned as potential stretch goals or Companion material. (Neall)

Q: Or to build on that, how the Alpha slice is shaping up? Do we have any kind of broad estimate of when we'll see that?

Should we hope for before GenCon, or set expectations accordingly? (Leetsepeak)

A: It'll be out well before Gen Con, but it's just an Alpha slice - a basic Purview or two, the basic rules, and some pre-gen characters. Nothing huge! (Neall) [240]

I'm interested in how you would model someone like Aphrodite. Out of the list above I can see her having some strong ties to Water, Beasts and Health..not sure how I'd manage the positive and negative aspects of Love/Lust/Passion though. (Achilles)

If we're talking Aphrodite Ourania, then she could plausibly have Earth, Sky, or even Moon or Stars.

Aphrodite is representative of the big overlap of the Lover Calling and the Passion Purview. (Neall) [241]

But... the only way I can see Aphrodite Ourania is if someone's going by her description as "Celestial" which ... is very confusing. (Aynie)

Q: What citations are you using for these? (Incendax)

A: Britannica, though [...] nearly every online resource notes the varying terminology of what "celestial" means to a Titan. And it makes sense if you're looking at it in the Titanic or Mesopotamian sense, where celestial import means control over the world entire. But Aphrodite probably isn't going to have Earth, Sky, Moon, or Stars. I was mostly being flippant.

(mmmmmaybe Stars or Sky, but probably not.)

The idea that Aphrodite's parentage and by extension metaphysical character is of some ambiguity, even to herself, relates to another part of Scion's Gods and how they work in 2e. (Neall) [242]


Q: i think i may have asked this one before but just to be sure,are purview avatars still present? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Yes, but the phenomenon has to be present somehow before you can embody it, and a sufficiently powerful presence functions as a new Sanctum for you (i.e. you're made aware when there's something the fits the criteria in the World). (Neall) [243]

Q: Gods are at their strongest at sanctums? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: In general. Their Godrealms, when they have them, are personal expressions of the sanctum. You don't want to try to face Hel down in her hall. (Neall)

Q: So if Teotl is the general name for everyone in the aztec pantheon,is there an specific name for the the deities with the highest status? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Many pantheons have sub-pantheons or distinct Paths within them. (Neall) [244]


(on purviews)
Q: So, that seems like a pretty short list. You have mentioned an idea called 'Sage' as some sort of Archtype which will help with the missing Epic Intelligence. What will cover Epic Charisma, Epic Appearance, and Epic Manipulation, Epic Wits, and Epic Perception? (Watcher)

A: In general, most of the Callings will have powers that filled out the old Epics; same with Justice and Guardian. In general, though, I prefer a more esoteric approach to the non-Physical Epics. (Neall)

Q: And, assuming that Prophecy and Mystery will be represented in Sage, it looks like Chaos, Guardian, Justice, and Stars are left for the kickstarter (but Passion and the 'City' based power you mentioned may swap in there). Why did you guys opt to represent the more nieche Frost and Illusion (except with the Deva who are very involved with Illusion) rather than the very common Justice and Chaos? (Watcher)

Q: "If Trickster contains the powers which in Scion 1E were found under the Chaos Purview, how does that leave the plethora of Chaos Deities who are not Tricksters? Dionysus, Eris, The Morrigan, Tezcatlipoca, and more. Will these figures be pigeonholed into taking the Trickster Calling even though they are not Tricksters? Or is there a different way to represent these counter-cultural or Strife based Chaos entities?" (Watcher)

A: Previously there was, but your comments have kind of convinced me to readdress my subsuming the Chaos Purview into the Trickster Calling. This is why open development is a good thing. (Neall) [245]


Q: Do we know enough yet to know if it would be possible to run a whole campaign at one threshold [ed note: ie, Hero, Demigod or God] only? (Feonorx)

A: In 2e, you should be able to. That's one of the design goals. (Neall) [246]


Q: Maybe my ignorance of Scion 1e is showing, but what is a Calling exactly? (Leetsepeak)

A: In Scion 2e, it's sort of an ur-archetype that you align yourself with to draw power from. (Neall) [247]


Q: Do you have any ideas about how Isis Made Ra Weaker in the Scion-verse? the original corebook says he was more powerful than all of the gods,but when Isis stole His true Name He became an equal to the other gods. How are you going to represent that? was Ra a Titan forced to be a part of pantheon? did isis forced him to lower his legend? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Any of those are a possibility, or it could've been something that happened during their Creation Myth. Ra is still Legend 12, though. (Neall)

Q: atum-Ré is Still part of the psesjet right? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Yes. (Neall)

Q: I am a fan of the Xian Xia genre of Chinese light novels, so I was wondering if it is possible to have a taoist immortal character in 2nd edition. (rickayelm)

A: Absolutely, it is. Origins has several "mortal level" supernatural templates. The Xian, though, would likely be akin to demigods.

Gods tend to have an odd interaction with sacred or holy men. You'd think it would be one way, but Vishnu once got his clock cleaned by a rsi, so. (Neall)

Q: Two things: 1) will the pantheons have an artificial "member limit" of the 10 best-known deities only, or will they be more like real world religions, with a different number for each pantheon, and 2) will there be write-ups with stats for the gods, like Scion Ragnarok? (Purple Snit)

A: 1) I'm not sure they ever did, even in 1e. In any case, we'll probably limit it to 10 deities in the core, but there are more - they're just not mentioned.
2) Eventually. It won't be done in the Ragnarok/God style, though. I found those writeups similar to the ones in Lords of Creation [ed note: in the Exalted boxed set Dreams of the First Age] - fundamentally unusable at the table. (Neall) [248]


Q: are there any plans for having books that go really deep into the details of each individual pantheon like ragnarok did with the norse? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Not on the level of full books. We might break them down into supplements, though. (Neall) [249]

Q: what are the current supplements plans? (Nicolas Milioni) [ed note: asked in March 2016]

A: Not defined yet. My preference would be for smaller supplements and a full-court press into Demigod. (Neall) [250]


Has there been any updates on the new birthright/relic creation rules? A few questions I have...

Q: Are relics going to still be a fairly vague system where anything can be created? While I loved the 1st edition rules with relics being so open I realize it was an absolute pain to balance them for each character. Is the new system going to be a bit more streamlined or easier to work with? (Yig1015w)

A: Not anything, but there's support for crafting characters (and a Forge Purview), as well as a system where you just append dots at character creation. (Neall)

Q: Are creatures and summons going to be more viable overall? I recall a player of mine who had a Raiden scion with 15 lightning elemental archers (reskinned and tweaked police). Eventually we got to a Minotaur (essentially one of the first high soak enemies) and even with all 15 of them attacking in conjunction with her it seemed they just couldn't even scratch it. In general it seemed summons and creatures just didn't scale well. (Yig1015w)

A: The whole system is built to do scaling well. (Neall)

Q: Any plans on making relic firearms a thing that actually works? I'm all for mundane firearms being crap against demigods and gods but I'd really like the idea that a relic firearm can be used effectively just as long as any other weapon. (Yig1015w)

A: Yes, relic firearms will be as effective as other relic ranged weapons. (Neall)

Q: Bows vs Thrown popped into my head as I was asking that last question. Bows in general seemed to lack identity in the end game. Scions could throw weapons around the world, guns didn't work at all, and bows (while scaling off str) still had this pipsqeak range that really held them back. Just hoping that if Relic Firearms make a comeback that atleast bows will have a unique niche within the game. (Yig1015w)

A: I don't know about unique, but it'll work. I toyed with bows being the top ranged weapon, guns being the best at providing Evocation Boons, and spears and thrown weapons being somewhere in between. (Neall)

Q: Any hope we can see weapons reduced to a more simplified system like exalted 3rd edition? The weapon list was sort of a mess in 1st edition. Not only were they all semi obscure ancient weapon names the stats seemed to be all over the place. Hard to justify certain weapons over others except for flavor reason.(Yig1015w)

A: Yes, they're simplified. They should mostly scale with the character. (Neall)

Thanks in advance! (Yig1015w)

You're welcome! (Neall) [251]


Weird question incoming.

Q: Is it all possible in 2nd edition to clone a Scion or make a bioborg replicant of one a la Thor's robo-clone Ragnorak from Marvel's Civil War comic? If so, would that clone/android/whatever still need a Visitation? IIRC a God can create artificially create a Scion, but I wonder if human ingenuity and comic book superscience can pull it off too. (Weirdboyz)

A: That is a weird question. I'd say no - Scion takes lengths to stop gods from feeling like comic book superheroes, and while humans can attain a sort of folk deification, actual apotheosis or Visitation isn't possible without a divine spark.

That said, I'd love to do a techno-data Shard later, where gods are Big Data, pantheons are proprietary software engines on quantum platforms, and Scions are their analog interfaces. In that case, yeah, a god or Scion could be remade through human ingenuity. (Neall) [252]

Q: whats the first shard you're planning to do after the main scion books are done? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: The Twilight Age, after the apocalypse, where humanity collapses back into the Dark Ages. Mood and setting is like Into the Badlands, if the Badlands are next to Mad Max: Fury Road, with a heavy dose of A Canticle for Leibowitz. (Neall) [253]


A few earlier discussions on how some nymphs/other divine beings are perceived with a lesser importance even though by rights they shouldn't be. (e.g. Nymphs are the daughters of titans but are thought of as low legend beings, Kheiron is another example. He is the son of Kronos and an Nymph Philyra (the daughter of Okeanos) but pretty much relegated to the mentor of heroes role and was considered around Legend 6 in his write-up).Q: My question is how does Scion currently view this. Before I would have said the following:
-child of two gods/titans equals a god/titan (starting at Legend 9 who may or may not rise in importance).
-child of a god and another being of legend (nymph/elf) (starting at demigod level Legend 5)
-child of a god and a mortal = basic scion starting at Legend 2 to 4 depending on the power of the god (Achilles)

A: I'm not entirely sure yet, though children of gods and mortals always start at Legend 0; their Visitation raises them to Legend 1. (Neall) [254]


Q: I tried to look for the answer but could not find it and maybe it's not finalized but will the new combat system and general system be as complex as the exalted 3rd ed ones ? (Astoril)

A: The system aims to be less compex though still deep, and the power analogues are planned to be far simpler, broad, and expansive. (Neall) [255]


Q: Will there be easier access to more blasty options if someone wanted to play a character that resembled something closer to a sorcerer or mage?

With 1st edition there seemed to be only a few attacks within the purviews and all of them were around demigod tier and didn't seem to scale all that well. Is a early Hero tier blasty character just not something that fits the theme of scion overall? I admit that I can't really think of many hero tier like figures in mythology that were slinging spells. They tended to use tools/relics and natural/divine prowess. (Yig1015w)

A: Yes and no. Divine prowess is still focused around that; spells are done through cultural magics. But there will be sorcerous options later down the road. (Neall) [256]

Q: So when you say later down the road do you mean in future side supplements or do you mean similar to 1st edition in the fact that throwing around lightning bolts or fire balls will show up in Demigod rather than Hero. (Yig1015w)

A: Future supplements will detail mortal sorcerers who can challenge the pantheons. (Neall)

Q: Random Question. Will sling's be a weapon choice? I only ask because that may fit my friend's character as a weapon type before he grows into energy slinging capabilities. I assume we could always use throwing rules if there isn't a particular writeup for a sling. (Yig1015w)

A: I think they should be mentioned under throwing rules, yeah. (Neall) [257]


Q: This may be another sort of strange question Neall, but it is a topic that I can remember being brought up on the old forums occasionally, and frequently within our own groups. At what point do Mortals become irrelevant non-actors in a Scion's story? Not necessarily all Mortals, Megara, Fergus mac Roich, Conall Cernach, and others play important roles, but more like Mortals in abstract. (Watcher)

A: At no point, really, though they're probably at their lowest point of relevance at Demigod. (Neall)

Q: What point (Legend rating) can a Social Scion just enthrall mortals with no effort? (Watcher)

A: None. It always takes committed effort. (Neall)

Q: At what point can mortals not physically hurt a Scion who has Epic Stamina at the highest value their Legend rating allows? (Watcher)

A: Who has Epic Stamina Boons, you mean? ;) Probably Legend 2, although no Scion is completely safe. A God caught without Legend can probably survive a .50 cal round to the head, but they're not really going to be getting up for a while. (Neall) [258]


Q: How would the game handle something like a non divine priest/human sorcerer? I mean by default they have no legend or really really low legend. So they'd end up having like first or second level scion abilities or would they get to channel their god's power and be capable of greater feats? (Achilles)

A: They have to pull Legend from other sources, be it devotion to Virtues or spellcasting abilities. (Neall)

Q: What is the relationship between relics and purivews now? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Relics add additional motifs, Evocation Boons, and allow you to channel a Purview outside that of your Callings. (Neall) [259]


Q: Curiously Neall, if you had to compile a listening list of Scion as you have it now and you'd like it to be, what songs would you put on the 'Making of Scion' playlist? (Squee)

A: It'd pretty much be a bunch of Queens of the Stone Age. (Neall) [260]


Q: How do Scions creating their own pantheon get around their pantheons punishing them? (TwitchTheRat)

A: Very carefully, like the Keepers of the World. Considering most pantheons worked a Creation Myth themselves at one time or another, though, and such a Myth reinforces the structure of the World...? (Neall) [261]


The primary reason Scion will have two cores has nothing to do with length of the material; if we wanted to, we could do Scion justice in less than 400 pages, which is about the maximum I consider viable for a single core book that's meant to be played and purchased by people at the table. It's because Scion is meant to be played separately at all three levels of play and for the line to be expanded out later. I'd like everyone to buy all of our books, but I keep the table in mind when I design - buying all of our books shouldn't be a necessity.

Length is why Scion: Origins (the core) is going to be cut down to the bone, though. I'd like the core to be as slim and broadly accessible as possible. (Neall) [262]


Q: Noticed that the fire attack [in the alpha slice] used athletics and that firearms existed as a skill. Does this mean that Athletics will include all ranged attacks not using a mechanical firearmlike type of device? Such as bows, thrown, and spells. Mainly interested in knowing about bows. I assume the Athletics and Firearm's separation for ranged accuracy is due to the fact that some settings will not have technology in general such as firearms and crossbows. Correct? (Yig1015w)

A: At the moment, yes. (Neall)

Q: Second, I loved to see that we get a fire attack ability through purviews right at character creation. Can we expect that a frost/ice or sky purview would also give the option to start with a ranged ice/lightning attack of sorts as well? (Yig1015w)

A: Sky, yes. For ice, you can use a marvel to attack as a definitive option. (Neall)

Q: Finally, are you limited to a single purview at character creation or is that just how the example character was? Could someone begin with access to Fire, Frost, and Sky for instance? (Yig1015w)

A: Purviews are generally limited by your Calling levels if you're directly mainlining them or by your Birthright relics; however, Boons are strictly limited, and you have a very small amount of Legend to commit to various powers. If you try to marvel your way through a half-dozen Purviews before you reach Godhood you'll burn out incredibly quickly. (Neall) [263]

Q: Taking this and how the Alpha Slice has the cost listed as "Imbue 1 Legend", does this mean that you do something like say, commit 1 Legend to Heaven's Fire for however long you need it and it lets you fling fireballs for as long as the Legend is committed? (Nervaqus987)

A: Yep. (Neall)

Q: How do you handle when a player wants to roll for an action with some stunt like elements right off the bat because they have a clever idea? Does the difficulty just go up as if they are spending for the stunt as part of their initial target? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: Some version of Difficulty and Complications (which are really just soft Difficulty). I'd favor the latter more. That said, if you have Enhancements to the roll, you can basically ballpark a good stunt target to shoot at. (Neall) [264]


Q: Any details you could give us on marvels? Haven't seen them mentioned before now. (Yig1015w)

A: Marvels, previously weaving, are "freeform" Purview usage that doesn't conform to Boons. You can use it to do various cosmetic effects, replicate a Boon you don't know at a much higher cost, cause a damaging attack with a Purview that doesn't normally allow it, dramatically edit the scene - anything you can think of, if you've got Legend to burn. (Neall) [265]


Q: I for get if its been asked, but how are virtues redefined and how doe they fit into the new system? (omenseer)

A: The alpha slice has some examples of Virtues. (Robert Vance) [266]

I checked the Alpha Slice.

Q: Mr. Neall. Is it possible you could the one or two word descriptors for the other pantheons? Not the full description mind you, that has to be saved for the release of course. :) (omenseer)

A: The Virtues, you mean? Æsir are Audacity and Fatalism. (Neall) [267]

A: So far we also have Tradition versus Innovation for the òrìṣà and Conscience versus Duty for the devás, but these are subject to change. (Lula) [268]

Essentially, the fact is, it's a game, not a mythology thesis. The Pantheons represent the larger-than-life manifestations of key concepts, in a manner that defines them, and gives the players a recognizable role-playing hook to hang their characters on. The Aesir are associated mythically with the end of the world known as Ragnarok. The Aztec are associated with sacrifice. For game purposes, they need to incorporate concepts that are recognizeable, even if not 100% accurate by current archeological and historical study. "Ragnarok is coming, and we will die as the world is reborn" is the basic tenet of Aesir mythology that pretry much any potential player wIll recognize. They struggle against it, but they also know it is inevitable in some form. Hence, I think, Fatalism ("Ragnarok cannot be prevented"), coupled with Audacity ("but I may be able to alter my own fated role and change some little part of it"). That's my interpretation, anyway. (Purple Snit)

This is a pretty fair assessment. Seeing the virtues as a range of ideas and issues at stake for a certain pantheon, rather than values which define a pantheon, might help. (Lula) [269]


Q: In general, can u give any information on how damage/health/soak will be handled? (Yig1015w)

A: In a completely new way from Scion 1st Edition. (Robert Vance) [270]


Nagualism [the Teotl PSP] may or may not end up allowing the practitioner to turn into the animal in question, but it will definitely allow someone to take on the strengths and weaknesses of their associated creature. You might also be able to manifest it as a sort of companion animal—not so much a pet or familiar as a His Dark Materials-style dæmon. (Lula) [271]


Q: In terms of possible Pacific Islander Pantheons, I have a friend who would lose her mind if she found out that the Tagalog were included. Any chance they may be on a list for a future book or in anyone's minds for a stretch goal? (TheGraySoul)

A: Yeah, for God, actually. (Neall) [272]


Q: Another question: How will the Vanir be handled? Will there be any expansion of them, or just "Frey & Freyja were traded to the Aesir, and that's pretty much all we know about the Vanir"? (Purple Snit)

A: The Æsir are the pantheon we're focusing on in Hero; in Scion, Vanaheim is an empty Terra Incognita, and the Vanir have mostly moved to Asgard. I'm not opposed to expanding them in a later book. (Neall) [273]


I've wrestled with an alternate Earth that could work for a Scion setting where the "only Jews" early Christian faction won out, and thus never spread among the Gentiles of the Roman Empire... in that world which I want to keep a certain amount of historic inertia with (so it continues to look LIKE our world, but always different enough to be weird, as opposed to just becoming a completely culturally and geopolitically different world that has the same physical geography), (glamourweaver)

[Crusader Kings II mod] Lux Invicta isn't too far from what happened in the World. (Neall) [274]


Q: What's the impetus for earthly supernatural forces (take the Nordic elves and dwarves for example) to keep themselves concealed? Are they subject to Fatebinding too? (glamourweaver)

Just to warn you, Neall, if you let me decide then the answer will of course be "racism." (Lula) [275]

I would expect nothing less.

A: Racism actually probably does have a little bit to do with it, in the sense that a lot of real-world cultural traditions are derided as Ceremonies of the Other rather than legitimate or differing cultural practices. In the last days of the Roman Republic, the Romans didn't fuck with Egypt's gods even if they fucked with the Egyptians; but today if someone tells you her Italian grandmother is a witch and she comes from a long line of witches you're probably going to roll your eyes. Same deal with a Slavic woman keeping a bit of coarse salt on her mantle. Scion's World is a lot more accepting of cultural and religious diversity than our world, but it's the same fundamental place (except for all the gods*) with the same fundamental problems.

The gods don't interact with mortals because they're people first and not superheroes**, but also because their Callings and Fate lock them into roles and relationships and they get tired of it after a while. This is also why they spin off Incarnations - to interact with mortals while Fate is running in the background and on the meta scale, rather than binding them into a thousand dramas in microcosm.

*says the monotheist
**although when was the last time Reed Richards busted out some hypertech for the benefit of humanity
answer me that (Neall)

Hi. I've been interested in Scion for a while now, and the stuff I'm seeing for 2E looks amazing so far. However, I have a question. Back when I first heard about Incarnates being a thing, I was thinking of making a set of twins who were Incarnates of Balder and Hodr. However, I checked the thread after learning that the Geneses were mentioned in here, and saw your ruling on the Balder being reincarnated (In that if it did happen, it would be rather problematic due to Balder not being fated to return until after Ragnarok), and with Hodr suffering a similar fate, I realized that there was no way that the idea was ever going to work. However, the idea of playing an Incarnate is still rather interesting to me, and so to prevent any more hiccups on that matter my question to you is: Is there any other deities from the Aesir -- or other pantheons, for that matter -- that are similarly off-limits for that particular Genesis? (Aquatica1000)

A: Please, don't let me discourage you! Baldr being an Incarnate lends an air of seriousness to the whole thing. What happens if Baldr is "offline" when Ragnarok hits? Or is the new Incarnate of Baldr wondering whether he'll have to die and Incarnate again for Ragnarok to go off?

There's probably some deities for whom it's more problematic than others, and Baldr is one of them. By contrast, the Teotl God in the alpha is implied to constantly Incarnate. (Neall) [276]


Q: Is this new edition a bit Darker? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Dark, but not dour. (Neall) [277]


The original [Scion] wasn't intentionally aimed at a younger audience. (glamourweaver)

Story time!

The original pitch for Scion in 2004 was for a pre-OSR Storyteller game that took place in a post-apocalyptic North America and was aimed at newer roleplayers, including but not limited to a younger audience. By "pre-OSR" I mean that it specifically set out to capture elements of 1e D&D - loose narration, randomly generated story elements, stripped down mechanical play, but still based on the Storyteller engine.

This was before Castles & Crusades, mind.

The actual setting was after an unspecified apocalypse had wiped out much of the population and technological infrastructure, regressing humanity to an effective Dark Age. In response, the Old Gods decided to choose new mortal champions, and also activated the children they'd been having all along. The old Scions weren't meant to progress beyond hero level as part of their narrative arc - it was about working the will of your parent in this shattered world, working to restore the old faiths and knit society back together once more. The Western US was basically a variant of Mad Max: Fury Road, while the Eastern US was a lot like Into the Badlands. The details of the setting were highly nonspecific, both because it was meant to be generated on tables and because it was deliberately designed to not have a lot of setting details to actually recall. Exalted was hitting a fever pitch at this point, and the vast setting was starting to fill out; Scion, being based on our world (but post-apocalypse), was already filled-out to some degree, so it was never going to get more than a few specific instances of setting-building in order to keep things free for the Storyteller. Again, the operative word is "New Dark Ages", in terms of feeling rather than actuality, so while you've got trade going on you've still got these big populations who have no true idea the other one exists.

Anyways, long story short, some elements of that original pitch - the nonspecific setting, the stripped-down mechanics - actually did last into Scion proper. This made it appealing to new roleplayers, even if the subject matter wasn't precisely meant for young players.

If you think I'm not going to have that setting come up in a Shard, you've got another think coming, because it's awesome. (Neall) [278]

Q: Into the Badlands the 1991 Western horror film, or Into the Badlands the 2015 AMC TV series loosely based on Journey to the West? (Noneofyourbusiness)

A: The latter. (Neall)

Q: are there any gods who change a lot mentally and phiscally with different mantles,or is are they essentialy the same? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: No God can mantle an Incarnation without it changing them. (Neall) [279]


Or watching the whole of the Judaism, Christianity, and Islam shit themselves as the realize that these gods who are an affront to their belief system, wreck shop and prove their existence. (The Dude)

The issue of monotheism is addressed, though not in a way that really dismisses the religions. I'm not gonna leave my boy Abraham in the lurch. (Neall)

I feel like this [a cult background] could be a balance problem, because then you run into issues of either A) worshippers don't give you power or B) worshippers do give you power and, with their ~1 billion active worshippers--far more than other pantheons have had in their entire history--the Devas are ludicrously overpowered. (guitarsniper)

I've been thinking about this for a while. I've also considered that the Devas have a sort of American military-industrial complex going on; they have a large number of committed Terra Incognita, lots of powerful enemies, massive divine superweapons to maintain. If faith does provide some sort of power boost, it's possible they need that amount. It also commits them to a level of intervention and Fatebinding that might be distasteful.

And just because the World is in a status quo at the moment doesn't mean the other pantheons will be satisfied with their number of worshippers.

It's also possible that there are benefits other than a direct power boost, like having a pool to discharge power or bad Fatebindings or something. Gods & Monsters for Fate Core had a variant on this system, where having a lot of shrines and worshippers basically meant having a massive power pool - but you still had to fill it. This is probably my preferred way of handling the Deva issue - they've got much bigger batteries than everyone else, but you're all pulling juice from the same shitty iPhone charger. (Neall) [280]


Q: Are gods aware of Callings in-character, or are they just a mechanical concept? (Tiresias)

A: They're mostly a mechanical concept, although there's some tongue-in-cheek mortal work on them. (Neall) [281]


Q: Will the Netjer be using their popular Greek names (Osiris, Anubis, Isis) or their classic Egyptian/Kemetic ones (Azar, Anpu, Aset)? (atamajakki)

A: Both! Although I prefer the Kemetic and the Greek to be the first in the AKA column. (Neall) [282]


Humans are more aware of the supernatural in Scion than in many other fantasy properties, though the supernatural is anything but common. Humans' reactions to alien super-science and magic in Steven Universe are a decent model. (Lula) [283]


Q: Does the prominence of the Old Faiths in the World play out in India as more surviving prioritization of the Indra led Vedic Pantheon, as opposed to complete dominance of Shaivism, Shaktism, and Vaishnavism? (glamourweaver)

A: I'm definitely interested in highlighting minority elements of Hinduism. The largest religions will still be really big deals, and in some cases may have absorbed older deities, but mantling should allow at least some of those deities distinct identities even if they do get rolled into the major categories. British colonialism (and the Mughals, for that matter) shaped a good deal of what we in the real world think of when we think of Hinduism, so the devás' influence in the World has probably changed that dynamic somewhat. (Lula) [284]


[Mythical character creation is separate from Scion creation], but it's all done with Paths, so you can effectively mix-and-match if you like. Satyrs have their own Hero tier upgrade, but effectively cap out around Legend 2 or so; it's something you can replicate as a full Scion, if you like. (Neall) [285]


Q: So you'll be adding new Pantheons in the (to borrow a CofD term) higher-Tier books; will these b capable of scaling back down to Hero? I think you mentioned the Atua making it into Demigod and it has me curious. (atamajakki)

A: Yes, they will. (Lula) [286]

A2: Mendez has the right of it, as he delightfully (and annoyingly) always does.

The focus might change slightly - the Atua have a ton of demigod heroes, for example - but any pantheon in Demigod or God will scale back down to both the Hero- and Demigod-levels. We'll also scale up the pantheons from earlier books, along with any stretch goal or supplemental pantheons we do. (Neall) [287]


(on the Callings blog post)
Interesting - I would have expected Trickster to be associated with the Illusion Purview (Neall didn't even list Chaos among the Purviews in the core earlier on this thread). Chaos certainly works for, say, Loki. But I wouldn't think to associate it with Hermes, or other "culture hero" Trickster figures. Illusion on the other hand, while it shouldn't be limited to Tricksters, works for deception purposes for all of them. (glamourweaver)

It is associated; multiple Purviews are associated with Callings. (Neall) [288]


I think it's been said that Epic Attributes have gone the way of the dodo, replaced with Knacks and Paths. (atamajakki)

The three Physical Epics are now Purviews, though you can be potent in combat without them. At God level, you are - to a certain point of view - a force of nature with a face. Though, to quote part of the ST chapter of Origins:

"Myths are not the product of attempts to explain why the sun rises or what lightning is. They are expressions of people's response to those events and how to find meaning—material, social, historical, or psychological—in them. They help people orient themselves in their lives, provide structure and purpose." (Neall) [289]


Hey Neall, the blog post looks brilliant. I was hesitant about archtype-esque ideas, but this looks to qualm my worries about them. What instantly stood out to me (asides from the funny Lugh blurb) was the mention of "Liminal" as one of the Paths. Instantaneously you had my attention with this, totally unexpected, and yet from the name I can see that it is something absolutely core to myth that was unfortunately left out of Scion 1E.

Q: Could you let us know more about the "Liminal" Path and some Gods or Goddesses who embody it? My immediate thought was Loki, Tezcat, Ishtar, and Radegast as the outside-insiders, but I wouldn't want to assume anything at all. (Watcher)

A: I think I've decided to put outsider-insider status more on tricksters, but a large part of "divided deities" or ones who are clearly of two worlds are Liminal. Ishtar, but also Hermes or Janus. (Neall) [290]

Q: So is Sutek/Set Liminal, Trickster, or both? (atamajakki)

A: Likely both. (Neall) [291]


Q: Will there be any "generic" stunts with a prescribed cost and mechanical benefit similar to the gambits in [Exalted 3e], at least in concept if not execution. Or will the scope of the stunt your extra sucesses allow and the mechanical/narrative benefit just be made up on the fly every time? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: Yes, we've got generic stunts like Create Complication, etc.

Doing what Ex3 calls both stunts and Gambits is basically in the scope of the Stunt system. Part of the reason we went this direction is due to a criticism I've had of all three editions, which is that stunts are narrated before you roll, so it's still possible to completely fuck them up. "With a cry of vengeance on my lips and murder in my heart, I sprint up the mast, leap onto the rigging, and springboard into the air, flipping down to slam my daiklave into the Lintha pirate!" "...well, that's a botch, you miss the rigging and fall into the briny deep." (Neall) [292]


Neall likes the idea that exclusionary monotheism - the idea that there is only one god, denying the existence of others - originated with Aten, Titan of Light. (marin)

I sure do, but I also like the idea that it functions as a cultural jammer for other pantheons to fuck with one another.

Monotheism is in the World. It's still recognizably ours.

2e is changing the Second Titanomachy from straight-up Titans Bad, Gods Good into a Cold War type scenario, which gives you a lot more room for henotheistic, monolatric or monotheistic beliefs, even if the last is "merely" a subtle knife wielded by the gods of the setting. (Neall) [293]


Q: Would an Incarnate or Created character have a moment where what they are hits them, or would they always have known that they are a piece of a god? (atamajakki)

While we don't know for sure (especially for Created) the sample character in the Alpha slice is Incarnate, and it looks like he has a moment of epiphany when he comes into his powers. He was not consciously aware of his divine status until then. (Mockery)

Yep.

I'm punting the Incarnated as a starting PC choice until the God book, to be honest. I want to get Incarnations perfectly straight before I work in the Incarnated. (Neall) [294]


If an Incarnate is never a Hero, it doesn't make sense to give rules for that Genesis in Hero… (Dataweaver)

I get the impression that an Incarnate almost always is a Hero, the same as any other Scion. On the other hand, it sounds like being Incarnate may be mechanically similar to other ways gods manifest in The World, so Neall wants to make sure that he has rules for divine manifestation hammered out.

... assuming I understood that right. (Mockery)

Yep, that's right. (Neall) [295]


Q: can you tell what are the Omens you mentioned in the Callings post? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: When a God incarnates, depending on their power and Legend, that God's presence manifests in physical and sociological signs called Omens. These Omens affect both the God's Incarnation and their Scion. they can be as simple as being followed by storms and ravens or as complex as always dealing with a stark betrayal. (Neall) [296]

Q: So in essence the territory around the god changes immediately and probably additionally over time due to those omens?
(thus if storms follow the god and he stays for a long time, it will be known as the center of storms in the US for example....or death valley in the case of a fire god?) (Ryu)

A: Maybe, but in those cases it's probably more of a chicken-and-egg situation. I think in a lot of Incarnations it's more subtle than that. (Neall) [297]


Q: Are there any Calling/Purviews associated with music? (KingCarnival)

A: The Artistry Purview encompasses music. (Robert Vance) [298]

Q: Oh cool! This is a different Purivew than "Forge" as well? Not an "artisanship" catch all? I mean, some Gods will have both obviously (*cough*Brighid*cough*) but there are separate purview a for Hephaestus' shtick and Apollo's? (glamourweaver)

A: Artistry and Forge are separate, yeah. (Robert Vance) [299]

Q: Is the difference that Forge is used to create things with material utility,and Artistry to create materials to inspire and abstract utility (Nicolas Milioni)

A: More or less, yeah.

Forging a sword? Forge. Composing an opera? Art. Building a computer out of spare parts? Forge. Writing manga? Art. (Robert Vance) [300]


Q: How many purviews are there? (Oriares)

A: The exact number has been in flux. At the moment [July 2016] we have 23 (a good Erisian number), not counting the pantheon purviews. (Robert Vance) [301]

[about a week later] And now it's 25. Flux! (Robert Vance) [302]


Q: Neall,the Alpha preview mentioned that he Nahualism can be used bey the teotl and teotl's religionists. Does that mean a worshipper can use PSP if he'1s devoted enough? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Yep. There are a few special rules for that. (Neall) [303]


Q: [...]how will you address gods that have rather large differences across cultures? Ares was a violent brute to the Greeks whereas Mars is a more dignified patron god and conqueror, for instance. (atamajakki)

One possibility: Ares is Mars when he was young and wild, while Mars is Ares once he gets married, settles down, and takes up farming. That is, let him evolve over time; and let the two Mantles represent him at different stages in his life. The Greeks knew of him when he was hot-headed and rash, and the Mantle of Ares reflects that; the Romans knew of him after he matured and tempered his bloodlust with self-discipline, and the Mantle of Mars reflects that. (Dataweaver)

There, you have it. (Neall) [304]


Q: Any plans for the Yazata? (marin)

A: My current plans (ever in flux) [as of July 2016] are to cover the Yazata as a stretch goal pantheon for Hero, along with the Nemetondevos and a Loa expansion to the Orisha. (Neall) [305]


Manitouk might go back to Manitou, because that's how our Anishinaabe sources prefer to spell it. (Neall) [306]


SO then, Fate doesn't force you to do anything. It just encourages you to do what it wants.

If that's the case, maybe the Aesir don't have to die, after all? :D (Nyrufa)

Oh, they still have to die.

This is Fate on the Origins and Hero level. It starts getting teeth at Demigod, and for Gods it's downright...well, binding. (Neall) [307]


Q: Can we expect to see The Dagda make it into Hero? (atamajakki)

A: I'd be surprised if he got cut. (Robert Vance) [308]


Q: Can you Tell if theres any mechanics difference between [the Created] and the biological made scion? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: They have a different Genesis Knack list and starting Knack. I think Created get Scent of the Divine to start.

Oh, and their Path must reflect their Created nature, which acts as a soft limit on what they can do. They don't have childhood friends, for example; the closest thing Enkidu would have is Shamhat. (Neall) [309]

Q: So the path would have to be something like, surrounded by machines? (KingCarnival)

A: The alpha character had "Carved From a Living Ash Tree" as her Genesis Path. (Neall) [310]


Q: How many Scions (of all four types) are there in the world at any given time? Exalted's divine heroes number close to a thousand total and Godbound's divine heroes maybe number a dozen. What about Scion? (reseru)

A: The World is a lot bigger and a lot smaller than Creation or Godbound's setting.

The original Scion God book gives the figure of 1 God for every 1000 Demigods for every 100 Scions. I'd rather it be 100 Demigods for every 1000 Scions, but that's me.

This gives a figure of anywhere from a few thousand to a few hundred thousand potential Scions, given that your band is expected and permitted to achieve Godhood. Pre-Visitation Scions aren't actually all that rare; you've probably met, been friends with, maybe even slept with a few of them. Besides actual children of the Gods, people with the capacity to be Chosen must have a certain sympathy to the divine. Actual Visited Scions are considerably rarer, but there are thousands of them.

Keep in mind, "a few hundred thousand" or even the high hundreds of thousands is within a global population of 7.4 billion people.

Incarnate Scions - those who are themselves a fragment of divinity - are considerably rarer, and they won't even be in the Hero core. (Neall) [311]


2e's conception of titans definitely takes into account their odd fit with various pantheons. Àwọn òrìṣà, for example, have nothing resembling titans in their source mythology. (Lula) [312]


Hey, since clearly no astronauts have reported seeing a giant man holding the planet over his head, could that mean Atlas is stuck holding Terra over his head? Would Scions wishing to visit Atlas have to journey through Terra to reach him? (Nyrufa)

Space travel in the World is an interesting prospect. (Robert Vance) [313]


But as far as why Titans are different from just old gods; I think that defines 2nd edition's cosmology. Titans are less personalities or "human" they embody ideas and elements which does not make them evil, but always makes them dangerous to humans. What makes gods different from Titans is an embracing of humanity. It's why there are religions and not just fearful writings of powerful primal beings. They gain a lot by embracing humanity but lose a bit too. That is why it is political, but also an important metaphysical difference. Titans are different. In my mind it's like the difference between a lightning strike and the electricity running through wires. Same general properties? Yes, but one is more controlled and purposed and has a bit more finesse, while the other is wild, uncertain, but always primal. It's an important difference which doesn't require a good/evil. (3Comrades)

You basically have it, yep. Titans are consumed by the metaphysical association with their Purview, Gods are not, even if they are both, say, Thunder or Dance. Gods have an intrinsic connection to humanity, and Titans don't.

In 2e, you can relate to some Titans, even have relationships with them. Helios even had a Scion (Phaethon). But Prometheus didn't steal fire and gift it to humanity because he wanted to help people, he did it to watch the minds of thousands burn.

A lot of the creator and primeval deities are classified as Primordials, entities of such grand stature and concept that they're difficult to interact with outside of an Overworld-aligned Terra Incognita. They take up the conceptual space of the Greater Titans, and often encompass world-bodies and conceptual underpinnings of the World. The Ogdoad are maybe the best example, but there's a lot of others. (Neall) [314]


Q: Btw one thing that I just remembered that irked me quite a lot in v1. Tehre were many creatures that had abilities to absorb/drain legend points while scions had nothing the like available. Thus there were abilities that were "general" but absolutely not "copyable" by scions.

Will there such things be again? Or will "general" powers (aka powers many non scions have) be also available in some form or the other to scions? (Ryu)

A: There are going to be some effects that certain antagonists get but Scions don't—it's sort of inherent in the setting. Growing back two heads for each one you lose is classic if you're a hydra, but probably not something Scions do (although you can probably copy a good number of them through marvels of your Purviews).

However, these aren't going to be uberpowerful NPC hax that make you feel cheated for not getting to learn them. (Robert Vance) [315]


Q: Neall,can you please tell more about Mantle Stealing? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: You walk like the gods until they walk like you. And then you walk somewhere else. (Neall) [316]


Yeah, the [Storypath System Preview] has me totally hyped for Scion, but I'm not sure what I can actually do with it. (Tiresias)

It's a preview, not an Early Access. Our core system isn't going to change too much, but it's meant to show ease of play. (Neall)

Q: Can you share who's on the [preview's] cover, Neall? I recognise Eric, Aaron, and the new Tuatha Scion, and that looks kinda like Annie X, one of 1e's Deva Scions, on the back... (marin)

A: Eric Donner, Scion of Thor; Aaron Tigrillo, Scion of Tezcatlipoca; Eileen Bran, Scion of the Dagda (the Red Man of All Knowledge); Annie X, Scion of Kali. The lady with the whip is Omolara Muhammed, Scion of Oya Iyansan; the kid with the Members Only jacket and white cap is Colwyn "Little" Máo, Scion of Laozi. (Neall) [317]


Q: I'm very excited to see similarities between Aspects in FATE and this Path mechanic in Storypath. The new edition of Unknown Armies has a similar setup where if you can say "because I'm a _____, I can..." and it seems really elegant. I'm really curious to see some example Paths. Do we know how many a character gets? (atamajakki)

A: A Hero-level character gets three - Origin (related to Genesis), Role, and Pantheon (your relationship with parent and pantheon). Callings are chosen to match these three Paths, and at least one of them must be the same as your divine parent's.

(You also get to channel one Purview of your parent for free, no strings attached, no relic needed, but you only get to pick one)

One of the playtest characters in the Alpha was Sigrún Askrdöttir. Carved from a living ash by Loki’s own hand, Sigrún spat her first breath back in his face, cursing Loki for giving her a masculine shape and fleeing from his sight. Taking her other parent’s name—the ash tree she once was—she ventured across Vanaheim, walking amongst the spirits of the land, the streams, the hills, and the lakes—these were, after all, her kin. After learning the magic of the trees and spurning her father once more, Sigrún eventually came to Midgard, descending the World Ash until one of its roots became an ash grove in Bethesda, Maryland.

Sigrun's Origin Path, related to her Created Genesis, is Loki-Carved.
Her Role Path, related to how she learned her primary set of skills and profession, is She to Whom the Woods Whisper (though "Daughter of Vanaheim" would work just as well).
Her Pantheon Path, related to how she once again defied and spurned her father, is Loki-Defying.

She chooses two Skills apiece for her Origin and Role Paths, which can stack (her Pantheon Path Skills are already chosen for her - I believe the Aesir get Close Combat and Occult). These are considered Asset Skills, which means they can benefit from Path evocations.

Loki's Callings are Creator, Trickster, and Liminal. While "She to Whom the Woods Whisper"pretty much screams Sage, "Loki-Carved" could be Creator or Liminal, while Loki-Defying could be either Trickster or Judge, so Sigrun herself has plenty of Callings to choose from. (Neall) [318]

This may or may not count as minor thread necromancy, but I want to see how easy it is to create or define a character using these guidelines.

Let's use the game's first iconic character and my personal favorite, Eric Donner as of his Hero stage for this example.

Eric is the son of Thor, so his Origin path is pretty clear - Son of Thor.

He was raised in the Midwestern United States by his mechanic grandfather, and was a high school football star, so let's go with Blue Collar Athlete as his Role path.

As to his relation to his pantheon, Eric seems to have accepted his parentage (Thor's absentee parenting will probably come up later) by following in his father's footsteps as a gallant protector of the weak, so let's go with Defender of Man.

Thor's Callings haven't been revealed yet, but it's a sure bet that Guardian and Warrior are two out of three. Origin and Role could both provide the Warrior Calling, while "Defender of Man" is basically a shoe-in for Guardian. "Blue Collar Athlete" might also logically give access to the Creator Calling and the Forge purview, representing Eric's mechanical capabilities inherited from his grandfather.

Hm. Does this sound right? (Prometheus878)

Yes, that sounds right. Because Paths come with two Asset Skills apiece, and Callings have three Skills apiece, congrats! You're more than halfway through character creation.

Eric gets to channel one Purview from his father for free; since Giantsbane covers Sky, taking Forge makes a lot of sense. (Neall) [319]


Q: How core is the idea of a Scion building their Legend and climbing to a seat among their Pantheon in a Scion game? I'm increasingly fond of the idea that a chronicle may well stay at Origins or Hero level forever and stay relatively grounded in terms of scope and power level. (atamajakki)

A: You can stay at the Origins, Hero, or Demigod level forever.

I guess you could stay at God forever too. (Neall) [320]

Q: Wait,can scions become something beyond a god? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Making your own pantheon and crafting your Creation and Constituent Myths is what I consider to be a viable ending for a Scion campaign. (Neall)

Other way of reading it: Can you go from a God to a Demigod and then back down to Hero? (Kyman201)

Well, here's the thing. If a dead God's Incarnates become fragments of that God who can claim said God's mantle, the Incarnation who claims it is very similar, but different in a lot of ways.

I mean, did you ever read the end of Sandman, where Morpheus learns he needs to change or die and makes his choice? Morpheus and Daniel are both Dream, but they're very different. (Neall) [321]


Q: Are knackw tied to Abilities as well as Callings? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Just Callings. (Neall) [322]


Q: Does the new Storypath system still have Bashing/Lethal/Aggravated damage? Are Stress Boxes the equivalent of Bashing, but Injury Complications more akin to Lethal? (Spaaace)

A: It has aggravated, but not bashing/lethal. Minor wounds are absorbed by Vitality; if a fight gets more serious, you should either be prepared to take more ICs or get Taken Out.

(You can be Taken Out without having all of your ICs filled, it's player choice. In fact, there's a lot of times when that's preferable.) (Neall) [323]

Q: Does this mean that like, Vitality is a value that soaks minor injuries, or some kind of track for it? (Leetsepeak)

A: It's a track. All injuries are applied to the Vitality track, they just get ameliorated or ablated by taking ICs.

If a God or Aberrant uses a bit of their Physical power to punch a mortal, they will probably crush the mortal, but if they roll poorly said mortal might "just" have their entire IC track full of horrifying wounds and most of their Vitality track taken up. (Neall) [324]

Q: Are the available ICs comprehensive or are they something the ST makes up? Rather, Is there a actual list of ICs such as broken arm/leg and then rules for maybe clumping two broken arms into a single IC? (Yig1015w)

A: We provide a list, but they're situation-specific. (Neall)

Q: Also, it seemed ICs were simply listed as negatives to dice pools. Do IC's have any additional mechanics that go with them such as slower movement speed for a injured leg? (Yig1015w)

A: The narrative complication for not overcoming the IC is actually an increase to Difficulty, and the consequence is you not being able to perform the action. At the SG's discretion, you could have the character complete the action but at a lesser speed, like you describe. (Neall) [325]


Q: Can we know Hercules callings? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Warrior, Hunter, Guardian.

As you might imagine, this makes him an exceptional combatant, especially since he's got Epic Strength and can punch above his weight class. (Neall) [326]


Q: Here's a thought. If a character possesses the Sky purview and its attendant ability of flight, and she later acquires the legendary talaria or the pegasus, are they of any personal benefit to her at all, aside from using them as bargaining chips?*

*Edit: I'm fully aware that this is sort of like asking if a person who can shoot invisible eye lasers would get anything out of a gun, but it's one of those things that's bound to come up. (Prometheus878)

A: Flight with Sky requires spending Legend rather than committing it. Pegasus requires that you have a comfortable saddle and is far more suited to long-range flight (and may be faster than your unaided flight, even with Sky). Up until Godhood when you start becoming bolts of lightning and charged ions and using that to move around the World's atmosphere, there are few better ways to travel.

(Stars does allow long-range teleportation even at the Hero level, though.) (Neall)

Edit: Also, note: Looking over the preview, the sample combat seems to indicate that both attack and damage (or rather, effects which can include damage) rolls have been combined into one.

...I think I like it. Speeds things up. Is this something other RPGs do? Wouldn't surprise me if FATE, for example, had something like this. (Prometheus878)

Yes, it combines them into one against a static defense. Most weapons just add tags to your attack to determine what kind of injuries they cause, though exceptional weapons might add some Enhancements. (Neall) [327]


Q: [...]Can i play Monster-Scions?i hasd this idea for a Created Scion whose true shape is a monster,he can still disguise himself a human,but his original and true form is mosntrous,but he's also still a scion with the purviews,knacks and potential to become a god. doe the game supports a character like that? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Certain kinds of monsters, yes.

EDIT: Okay, I don't need to be that cryptic. We've talked about certain kinds of playable humanoid monsters such as the apsarāḥ and gandharva, but I don't know what those look like yet systematically. One of the signature characters will probably be one of these. (Lula) [328]

Satyrs have been confirmed as a playable group, so I don't imagine it would be too hard to fudge a couple rules in order to make one a full Scion, assuming it isn't supported right out of the gate. Which is awesome, because I've wanted to play a satyr Scion of Pan for years. (White Oak Dragon)

What it specifically requires is a Path that indicates you're a satyr, which gives access to a suite of Satyr-only powers. You buy them like you would Knacks, and there's an upgrade tree with more Knacks in Hero. It's incredibly easy to play a Scion satyr. If you really wanted to, you could play just a satyr, though you'd top out at Hero-level. (Neall) [329]

Q: Would being a Satyr be an Origin or Role Path? (KingCarnival)

A: Origin. ...unless your role in life is to be a satyr, I guess. (Neall) [330]


Q: Here's the question. I saw a Scion with four arms in most recent teaser. What kind of power is having four arms? Is it a knack or boon? Could a Scion have it as a specific power (sprout extra arms) or as part of a general shape-shifting power? (gyre)

A: It's her Omen, a sometimes-supernatural effect associated with her growing Legend that allows you to identify her.

It might also be part of the Deva PSP at this point, I can't recall, but you can write it up either way. (Neall) [331]

I think Annie X probably isn't getting it out of the Signature Purview, but another Devá Scion maybe could. (Robert Vance) [332]

I have some many questions about [Omens].

Q: Do you need a certain level of Legend to get an Omen?
Do Omens change with Legend?
Can Scions forcibly activate their Omens to look divine and stuff?
Do people of the Scion's religion automatically recognize Omens for what they are?
Does activating an Omen have a cost?
Do Omens trigger automatically when Scions spent a certain amount of Legend/activate certain Boons? (Tiresias)

A: Yes, potentially, yes, yes, no, yes. (Neall) [333]

Q: LOL All these questions make me want to ask the Question are Omens just Animas? (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: No, not really. Animas aren't "always on" while Omens always are. Omens are also non-optional added features to your Incarnations - you can leave off one, but powering up an Incarnation or creating one of sufficient power means you have to strap on Omens. That said, Odin's missing eye is a lot more socially acceptable than Ganesh's elephant head, so if you meet a older man with a missing eye and a bunch of ravens around him, give him hospitality. (Neall) [334]


Oh man,please tell me more about [the Deva] Psp. It sounds really amazing (Nicolas Milioni)

Devá Signature Purview: Yóga

The yogás are pathways to the liberation of the spirit and realization of the ultimate self through selfless action (kárma yóga), personal devotion to divinities (bhakti yóga) and the pursuit of understanding the divine (jñana yóga). With this Purview, the Devás and their Scions may acquire divine favor and blessings through the practice of these austerities and selfless service. Conveniently, the scriptures and epics in which the Devás feature are full of tales in which the reward of selfless service just happens to be, say, a bow that shoots nukes.
Innate Power: Once per scene, when you act selflessly despite hardships in order to uphold a duty or serve someone else, you may grant 1 Momentum to another player character.

The two Boons are Devotion's Reward, which lets you sacrifice and pledge service to get a loan of a relic, Knack, or Boon; and Eyes of Knowledge, which lets you ask a question of a divine being and receive the answer in the form of a poetic monologue. Devotion's Reward could probably temporarily purify your spiritual essence, the result of which is blue skin and sprouting extra arms. (Neall) [335]

Q: Neall, can we know about all the PSPs, pwease? (Tiresias)

A: I'll take it a step further and give you the playtest motifs, or how other Purviews' free-form magic is worked through the cultural lens of the PSP.

Æsir: Wyrd
The destinies spun by the Nornir can be changed through drawing runes or magical weaving.
Kami: Yaoyorozu-no-Kamigami
The kami are all things, and can be bidden to work wonders.
Devá: Yoga
By chanting spells and undergoing austerities, one may create or become a miracle.
Manitou: Dodaem
An offering of tobacco, prayers, dance and song convinces the myriad, unseen manitous to work their magic in your favor.
Netjer: Heku
Speaking the sacred ritual words releases sekhem, lending power to the soul.
Orisha: Posession*
Those who understand plants can use them in magic and medicine.
Shén: Tianming*
Alchemy manipulates the energies both within and without the body through exercises and concoctions associated with the five elements.
Teotl: Nextlahualli
Offerings of flowers, food, effigies, and blood empower the gods to sustain the World with miracles.
Theoi: Metamorphosis*
The most high may grant their favor to those who beseech them.
Tuatha de Danann: Geasa*
Magic flows from verse and satire.

*This Purview's motif doesn't have a ton to do with the Boons it's got.

Interesting. I didn't expect the PSPs to be so geared towards each Pantheon's culture. (Tieresias)

The motifs are, because all freeform magic must be worked through a motif (whether you get it from a relic or a PSP). The PSPs themselves are comprised of magic we see gods using in stories. (Neall) [336]

Q: [...]I was wondering if you could say why the Orisha got Possession? Cause, getting ridden is a thing, but you see that more in vodoun. (MadxHatter0)

A: Possession is important in Yorùbá religion as well, especially in diaspora. I can recommend some sources if you're interested in reading more about it. (Lula)

Q: While, if you asked me, one of the major forms of "magic" involving the Orisha and Yoruba culture at large is the concept of ashe, and I was wondering if you could talk about about why you went for possession instead of something like that? (MadxHatter0)

A: Àṣẹ is so universal a force that Vance and I would have a difficult time boiling it down to two Boons and an innate power that represent the concept as a whole. Still, if you have ideas about how to accomplish such a thing, I'm interested! (Lula) [337]

Q: How does [the Theoi's] motif work if Zeus is the one using it? I can see how the other Theoi might be able to do so, but I can't think of a God that Zeus would consider higher. (White Oak Dragon)

A: The Dodekatheon, while Incarnate, sort of eyerollingly mutter and ask themselves for aid or otherwise acknowledge that they're helping themselves. They can also make a straightforward appeal to the Goddess Arete. (Neall) [338]

Q: Neall, for a few of those, like the Orisha and Dodekathon PSP stuff, what does it mean that the motif doesn't have a lot to do with the Boons itgets? (MadxHatter0)

A: The Orisha motif involves rootwork, but their Boons revolve around spirtual possession (though I suppose, in theory, it's all related to a concept of invoking towards a spiritual balance. Mendez is the expert, though). The Theoi PSP involves invocation of a deity or self for aid, but their Boons are about shapeshifting into clouds or turning people into pigs because they're being sexist. (Neall) [339]

So PSPs are still one Boon per legend level then (KingCarnival)

Every Purview has three sample Boons; every PSP has two sample Boons. They're not the only possible Boons, though. As of playtest, you only get a limited number of Boons at your level of Legend, 5 Boons total at Legend 4 (so they can max out one Purview and their PSP, or potentially have 5 different Purviews. Better have relics for all those Purviews.)

PSPs and relics give motifs, or methods of using the power of Purviews.

A Scion may channel one Purview of their divine parent without need of a relic. Someone mentioned that Eric Donner is often fixing up his car with Forge while he uses Giantsbane to channel Sky, and I think that's a good example. (Neall) [340]

Q: I think I've read 'you better have a relic to channel that' like four times now. How hard is it to gain a relic after say character creation? Can you forge one of your own before you achieve Godhood? Is it some insanely difficult process for the smith gods or can they churn them out like Hephaestus used to do for all the gods and the heroes with his team of Cyclops working in Mount Aetna? (Achilles)

A: Haephestus has like all of his Boons tied up into Forge and all of his Knacks in Creator. Churning out relics is what the man does.

For other gods, even Creators or Forgers, it's more difficult and time consuming process. It's not insanely difficult to get a relic after character creation, but it's not an easy or inexpensive process either. The more relics you have, or the more eggs are in one relic basket, the more vulnerable you become. Also, to be able to channel a Purview with marvels, you have to buy at least one Boon in it - and you only get a limited number of those at any one time. (Neall)

Q: What kind of time frame are we looking at if you suddenly discover you’ve been invited to a wedding between a child of Amaterasu and a child Nike and want to make a good impression? (Achilles)

A: You're probably better off giving cash, but questing to find a suitable relic is a good option. (Neall) [341]

Q: So to use any Purview as a Hero you need to
1- Choose it as the Purview you can channel for free.
OR
2- Possess an appropriate Relic so you can channel that Purview as a motif
OR
3- Know one Boon from that Purview so you can channel it as a marvel.

Is that correct? Or am I misunderstanding what motifs and marvels are? (Tiresias)

A: You're misunderstanding a little.

A marvel is a free-form use of a Boon. It can be used for a lot of effects, including replicating a Boon you don't know with drastically reduced efficiency and greater cost and the marvel's use most conform to a motif - you can't wave your arms and use Fire to set off every fire alarm in the skyscraper, you have to wave your arms and invoke Hestia's anger at fire burning outside a proper hearth, or wave your arms to toss a herbal potion of smoke and fear into the control room, or wave your arms while reciting a satirical poem about the responsiveness of the city's fire department and daring them to respond. If you can channel the Purview, you can use a marvel. But to channel a Purview:
1) It must be one of your parent's Purviews, chosen at character creation.
or
2) You must possess an appropriate relic or Guide. (Neall) [342]

Every Purview has three sample Boons; every PSP has two sample Boons. They're not the only possible Boons, though. As of playtest, you only get a limited number of Boons at your level of Legend, 5 Boons total at Legend 4 (so they can max out one Purview and their PSP, or potentially have 5 different Purviews. Better have relics for all those Purviews.) (Neall)

Not sure I'm 100% getting it so asking:

Q: 1.) So does that mean you can gain UP TO 5 boons at legend 4 or automatically gain a total of 5 boons at legend 4? Thus if you want more powers you need either relics or use marvels of your existing boons in order to do diffent things than those 5 boons normally allow? (Ryu)

A: As of playtest, the latter. (Neall)

Q: 2.) How high does legend go this incarnation (aka 2nd edition) max.? And what is the highest for origin tier and hero tier? (Ryu)

A: Legend 4 for Hero, Legend 12 for God, same as 1e. (Neall) [343]


Q: Is it possible for legendary creatures who don't traditionally have illusion/shapeshifting powers, such as satyrs, to pass as humans? (marin)

A: For satyrs? Yes, so long as they don't go too deep down the "Roman" tree of their powers and stick to the "Greek" one. The former gives you a pseudo-Omen.

That said, it's not like they're totally unknown in the modern World. (Neall)

Q: Any chance of seeing terra incognita that aren't associated with the pantheons? (Thinking of Prester John's kingdom as an example.) (marin)

A: Prester John actually gets name-dropped in the World Bible as an example of an unaligned Terra Incognita, so good catch. To answer your question, yes, there are unaligned Terra Incognita, and the Storyguide can make more. (Neall) [344]


Q: As far as battles are concerned, why the first to attack can choose the next character to attack? How this solution came up? (Wickedgrail)

A: It's probably the most effective initiative system for setting up teamwork roles and synergy by using the group's own relationships to carry the load, as it were. "Okay, you do this, then you, then you" works better than "okay, you do that, then next turn I'll do this, then...". Gets right to the meat of it.

Quickest guy goes first because it's partially diegetic - it's weighted towards fast and responsive characters, or you might have super-speed so you go first. But once that's over with, it really doesn't matter who goes next, so we wanted to keep the narration going. (Neall) [345]

Q: Oh I see but is it possible to attack twice or more or once per turn per character? (Wickedgrail)

A: You can only attack once per turn. (Neall)

Q: By the way, is it still possible to hit together like a "chain reaction"? (Wickedgrail)

A: This initiative system is basically designed to encourage those sorts of chain reactions by default. (Neall) [346]

Q: The problem is as I see in the rules, one player character acts on alternative turn with the director characters. How to create those chain reactions? (Wickedgrail)

A: That might be how things shake up in the roster, but often I've found that two players act one after another. (Neall) [347]


Q: Big question lol. Did Persephone make the cut as a God choice in the core Hero? (Yig1015w)

A: Yes, she did. (Neall) [348]


Q: Does Scion magic act according to natural laws? Or is it more idea based?

Like, if you use Levin Fury to hurl a thunderbolt at someone, could it be defeated by a faraday cage? Or is it the physical manifestation of divine fury and you just aren't getting away from that? (Prometheus878)

A: A Faraday cage would probably ground a lightning bolt, but it's not like the Scion doesn't have options. A Manitou Scion could use Dodaem to ask the manitou to refrain from grounding for a moment, while a Kami Scion could use Yaoyorozu-no-Kamigami to do the same thing. A Theoi Scion could probably ask Zeus to give them enough power to melt the Faraday cage (it handles the electricity just fine, but what about the heat?). (Neall) [349]


Q: Forgive me if this is blatantly obvious, but is the upcoming Kickstarter just for Origins and Hero or the entire Scion 2e line? (atamajakki)

A: Just the first two books, though if it explodes it'll probably fund a few more. (Neall) [350]


(For reference: the Greco-Roman, Egyptian, Norse, Hindu, Chinese, Japanese, Algonquian, Yoruba, Aztec, and Irish gods are confirmed for Hero, with the Persian, Vodoun, Mayan, Gaulish, Inuit, Polynesian, Mesopotamian, and Aboriginal Australian pantheons all mentioned in some degree for later products.) (atamajakki)

And the Welsh pantheon, but I really want to do a big book for them. Scion: The Once and Future King is my working title, although one writer suggested Scion: Cwm and Get It. (Neall) [351]


Q: You mentioned that Hephaestus has all of his Boons tied up in Forge, and all his Knacks in Creator. Does that mean that characters have a maximum limit on Knacks as well? I'm assuming that Hephaestus being associated with Fire indicates that he actually has a single Boon in Fire and uses marvels for most effects. What about Gods that are associated with many Purviews? Are even the greatest of Gods either jacks-of-all-trades or masters of one? How would such things affect character advancement? (White Oak Dragon)

A: Right now, Heroes have an upper limit on Boons and Knacks, but are able to slowly shift their Knack suites around after sessions end. So they're ever-changing and growing, but sometimes it's a lateral growth. If there's significant issues with the playtest, or if I figure out a better way to create a plateau in play (so you can keep being Heroes forever if you want), I'll incorporate it. The hybrid advancement rules are something new that I haven't seen done a lot before in RPGs, so we're doing a lot of fiddling to get them right. (Neall) [352]

Q: Are the higher tiers limited in the same way? (White Oak Dragon)

A: Undecided at the moment [ed note: August 2016]; we're still playtesting and designing systems. (Neall) [353]


Q: Once they exist, will it be possible to play an Incarnate character at Hero lever? (atamajakki)

A: Yes, you will be able to do so. I just want to have Gods hammered out before we enable play for their splinters. (Neall) [354]


Q: Are there other mythological creatures that are 'well supported' to be made scions as player characters, in the new edition? (Badgerconda)

A: Potentially! There's also the possibility of being a Scion and dipping into "minor" powers, like berserkers or valkyries. (Neall)

Q: And on the same subject, if one wanted to have a character that bridged between two cultures (like say, a Scion of the Aesir who is also a satyr) would that be possible? Can a mythological creature like that be made a scion without being the actual child of a god? I've seen that type of scion referred to a few times, but it seems to be unclear what might qualify someone to be made a scion if neither of their parents are gods. (Badgerconda)

A: Nothing in the rules or setting prevents you from doing so. If your character has the requisite supernatural sensitivity and mythological association (note: those are actually really high bars to entry), they can become a Scion. This more-or-less replaces the adoption from the last edition. (Neall)

Q: As an unrelated question, can you tell me anything about what the Tuatha will look like in 2E? I'm wondering if it will be possible to play a scion (maybe an incarnate) of CuChulainn. (Badgerconda)

A: Scion, no. Incarnation...probably! (Neall) [355]


Q: So, late to reply, but hearing that the Orisha PSP is a motif of rootwork structured around possession I'm gonna be a bit sad(just really wanted to see Ashe finally done in a game), but I'm not mad. Cause if nothing else, this kind of cultural accuracy is really appreciated, and I"m hype to see the rest of how the game works. Tho Neall, I have to ask, could you reveal what Purviews, Oya has(if you've included Oya)? (MadxHatter0)

A: Oya is, in fact, the parent of the Orisha sig, Omolara Muhammad.

Ọya Iyansan's Callings are Guardian, Leader, Warrior; her Purviews are Epic Strength, Epic Dexterity, Artistry (Dance), Prosperity, Sky, Water. (Neall) [356]

Neall, I'm happy again, this version of Oya sounds incredibly badass! Legit, as a black gamer I've never felt more loved than now. To see the Orisha done well(even if it's not to my dream list or whatever) is awesome. SO hype! Though I'm honestly caught between whether I should make an Orisha scion or a Netjeru scion first. Decisions! (MadxHatter0)

Happy to do it! Diversity and representation in the art and gameline is a major focus and something we're really striving for. (Neall) [357]

Q: Neall, do you intend to write up how one would develop a PSP for the purpose of homebrewing within the books? I ask cause, a part of me wants to try my hand at homebrewing up Ashe for the Orisha, but then I also realized with how many pantheons we won't see for awhile potentially I imagine there are people who'd be interested in having guides on how to go about building one. (MadxHatter0)

A: I'm probably going to rescue the Atlantean Pantheon from 1e as a blog post to show folks how you'd go about making your own pantheons and PSPs, yeah. (Neall) [358]


Q: Would running a single-Pantheon campaign (chronicle?) run into any snarls on a mechanical diversity front, or is that easy enough within the rules? (atamajakki)

A: It's easy enough. (Neall)

Q: And is there any chance we could see the Callings for Sekhmet? (atamajakki)

A: Okay, but this is the last one, folks!

We made the somewhat controversial decision to merge Bast and Sekhmet, with Bastet being a later mantle/personality. The Egyptian pantheon, not unlike the Greco-Roman pantheon, presents difficulties where you can point to a god early in their religion's timeline and go "these are clearly the same god" but a couple of hundred new cities and a few years and they've never been the same god, how could you think that? Is Ptah actually Sokar or Tetenen, and is he married to Bast or Sehkmet or both?

Thankfully, a lot of this is politics, and allows us to do interesting things like talk about how these singular beings change over time and use mantles to keep cognitive dissonance to a minimum.

Callings: Hunter, Sage, Warrior; Purviews: Artistry (Brewing), Beasts (Cats), Epic Dexterity, Epic Strength, Fortune, Moon, Sun, War

Scions of Sekhmet are also automatically eligible to buy Knacks from the Prophet Path. (Neall) [359]

Eh. Some more orthodox folks might moan about that one, but it's easy enough to spin Sekhmet's myth of being soothed with alcohol as one of her domestication from lioness into the housecat Bast. I think it's a good move, and thank you for the spoiler! (atamajakki)

If they don't like it, it's super easy to make their own version and say it's different. I say that up front: we need to make judgment calls on these sorts of things left and right, and if we spend all day worrying over one God we'll never get the damn book done. (Neall) [360]

Q: Did you decide to have Sekhmet as Hathor as well, or is Hathor her own goddess? (marin)

A: Hathor got merged with Isis.

This whole discussion has caused a new sidebar to appear in the text:

"Divinity is not a static thing, even outside the world of Scion. Take the Goddess Sekhmet, for example: in the Upper Kingdom, she was the lioness goddess of war, yet there was a parallel deity with many (though not all) of the same attributes, called Bast, in the Lower Kingdom. Many parallel deities were much the same, and merged seamlessly when the Kingdoms unified, but Sekhmet stayed Sekhmet and Bast became Bastet, known more as a protector deity.

Many gods across many pantheons change, alter, split apart from other gods and merge with others. Accuracy in myth is a shifting line over time, weaving through thousands of years of politics, art, and religion. Scion, however, must consider these beings to be largely singular who change over time. Judgment calls must be made: we posit that Sekhmet/Bastet began wild and untamed, but her love of beer has mellowed her into a fierce protector, a separate mantle known as Bast. If you or your group disagree, or want to use them as twin sister Scions of Ra who went two separate ways later in life, that’s perfectly fine - just create new Callings and assign Purviews." (Neall) [361]

Was ra merged with anyone? (Nicolas Milioni)

Historical, damn near everyone. Though I don't think that's what you're looking for. (atamajakki)

Yeah, Ra's kind of a prime example of this issue. (Neall) [362]

Q: Does that mean Sobek's made the cut? (atamajakki)

A: Do you think I'd leave out the one god who loves kids out of Scion? No way. Sobek is the best parent in the pantheon, hands-down. (Neall) [363]


Q: Are Purviews still tied to Callings, or did that change during playtesting? (Tiersias)

A: It's changed. You now inherit just straight-up inherent one Purview from your divine parent. (Robert Vance) [364]


Q: What's the difference between Prosperity and Fortune? (KingCarnival)

A: Fertility, Fortune, and Prosperity have some conceptual overlap. Fortune is more about conceptual good luck on an individual level, while Prosperity is more about material and cultural wealth on a societal level. (Neall) [365]

Q: wait. does this mean I cold feasibly make Tyche/fortuna and nemesis? cause I would love to have them appear in games. (Grimangel53)

A: Adding new gods to existing pantheons is really really really easy. (Robert Vance) [366]


[...]I am also curious about the virtues of the Theoi, and how they might influence the characters. (White Oak Dragon) [367]

The Theoi Virtues revolve around strong emotions, and are Egotism and Storge. (Neall)

Q: For a newbie here; what are Virtues? (atamajakki)

A: 1e Virtues worked like they did in 2e Exalted - they were 4 arrangements (from a list of 16) objective values that a pantheon believed in. Courage, Piety, that sort of thing. The problem was that they failed to encompass a lot of what the pantheons actually valued and bringing them up in play was difficult.

2e Virtues effectively describe a warring (if false) dichotomy in the pantheon, what two issues repeatedly bring it into conflict. For the Norse, it's Fatalism (our lives are woven by the Norns, and we are fated to our end) and Audacity (Fate can go fuck itself! Drengskapr ahoy!). For the Devas, it's Conscience and Duty, or two warring interpretations on "what is right" of individual judgment and proper action. The Tuatha, Honor and Prowess; the Manitou, Pride and Purpose.

You may notice that the Virtues don't always conflict in a lot of situations, and that's intentional. A tuning fork has two tines, but they're part of the same fork, and they point in the same direction.

(after some speculation and discussion on the Netjer's Virtues)
However, it looks like from the examples Neall's given here, they're examining things in more detail. Additionally, in the five examples given here by Neall, the two Virtues are not a Good v. Bad thing (though, I know very little about the Algonquin, so I can't speak for the Manitou example given) but a complicated balance of two highly valued, but sometimes contradictory socital values. (Watcher)

This is precisely the thing we're going for.

(The current Netjer Virtues are Balance and Justice. Sometimes pursuing Justice means upsetting a delicate balance, while sometimes Balance allows an injustice to occur.) (Neall) [368]

(on the Orisha's Virtues of Tradition and Innovation)
I can totally see Tradition vs Innovation. Especially with how that might play out with the Loa later on, or if we ever got a write up on Umbanda. Just cause, those faiths are so much about innovation and change to survive. If nothing else, I'd be interested to see what Tradition necessarily looks like. Cause with a lot of West African religions there's this big focus on family, and tradtiion in that sense(familial roles, duties, etc.) but in this modern age of like so many queer black folks for example and others who are pushed out of their families that traditional mindset could be an interesting virtue to deal with. (MadxHatter0)

This is exactly what I'm going for. The combination of tension and continuity between, for example, Candomblé and Umbanda is a Tradition vs. Innovation issue. (Lula) [369]


Q: Still wondering if sorcerers will be in scion origin, as mentioned way back on the threads ? And about magic. How flexible will it be compared to 1. Edition scion. More sphere/arcanum like or just spells or even more exiting, a complete third option? Can't find any place it has been mentioned before. (Plotinus)

A: Sorcerer Paths are mentioned, and will interact with full sorcery rules in a later book. For now, they pick a PSP motif and stick to it, depending on their culture. Sorcerers themselves must siphon Legend or some other source of power to fuel their deeds (and indeed, some Gods are patrons of sorcerers, like Hermes and Thoth). (Neall) [370]


Q: Hey Neall, question, when it comes to alternative forms of magic within a culture, how would you represent that? Like, using the Aesir for example, you have the use of Runes as their PSP, but what about Seidr? Would that be some sort of alternative PSP, a sorcerous path, like what would you do to represent that considering Odin was known for both Seidr, rune work, etc.? (MadxHatter0)

A: Seidr is part of the Wyrd Purview, in addition to runes and charms. (Robert Vance) [371]


(discussing 1e's Purview categories)
There are also the three 'Special' Purviews, Magic, Mystery, and Prophecy, but that's a weird sub-catagory that doesn't really get acknowledged. (Watcher)

Yeah, I never liked them, which is part of the reason they're gone in 2e. "Cultural" magic is folded into the PSPs, Mystery is folded into the Sage Knacks, and Prophecy gets split into two Knack trees that mortals can pick up and Gods can zap others with. (Neall) [372]


Q: Has the way Callings work significantly changed since the June [2016] preview? Scions channel one, Demigods 2 and Gods 3 and all that? (Prometheus878)

A: Actually, now [ed note: August 2016] Heroes and Demigods get 3. They control which Knacks you can buy. (Neall) [373]

(re the sig characters' Callings)
I need to know that Scion of Oya's callings personally (MadxHatter0)

Guardian, Hunter, and Judge. (Lula) [374]

Q: Who is she judging? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Shyster businessmen on Wall Street. (… and Eric Donner) (Lula) [375]

Q: What are Eileen Bran's callings? (Deranged Goblin)

A: Not sure. She's got Sage, absolutely - Origins-level Scions get access to one Calling. (Neall) [376]

Q: So do all 'basic mortals' only get one Path? (gyre)

A: One Calling? No, just pre-Visitation Scions. Most people have two Paths, though the system doesn't assume you're going to give literally every NPC two Paths. (Neall) [377]


I'm just really excited to see some of the less antagonistic Titans make the cut; none of the Netjer ones seem terribly hostile, whether the Ogdoad (the primordial void-waters of Nu seems like a fascinating character to include) or the more familiar Geb and Nuit. (atamajakki)

We have a different class of deity in 2e - Primordials, who don't manifest except through the Overworld, and then only rarely. They never make Scions*, and while they don't share the lack of empathy of Titans, they're just too conceptually big to fit inside the World.

*Kitchi-Manitou and the Goddess Danu seem to be weird exceptions. (Neall) [378]

Q: Is Oludomare/Bondye a God, Primordial, or too distant to quantify in the game? (I would have assumed the latter, but if Kitchi-Manitou is an active distinct Primordial that changes my assumptions!) (glamourweaver)

A: Too distant, too abstract. Bondye/Olo* is a god in the same way that YHWH is a god. (Lula) [379]


Q: One thing I really is wanted to know is just what happens if the god does something outside their mantle,if the mantle is an an archetype the god embodies,what happens when the god defies the archetype? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: What makes you think they can? (Neall) [380]


Q: There's been mention of the Orishas as a coalition Pantheon. How broad is that coalition? Is it firmly rooted in the Yoruban deities, is it a not-Egyptian African-catchall (hope not), or something in between (such as a West African coalition, but not one that extends to the Bantu peoples or Khoisan of central and southern Africa)?

For example would the Alusi of the Odinani religion of the Igbo people in Nigeria fall under the Orisha blanket, or be their own Pantheon? (glamourweaver)

A: I don't *think* the Orisha are a coalition at all. (Robert Vance) [381]

A: I'm not 100% certain what a coalition pantheon is, but àwọn òrìṣà are (assuming we hit the stretch goal) confederated with the loa because of the close and persistent relationship between those two pantheons especially in African-American religion. Bringing the Igbo gods into that confederation is an interesting idea, but I know less about them because their best sources are in Igbo and Spanish, which I don't speak. (Lula) [382]


Q: I'm sure this was asked and answered but for the life of me I can't find it, will the game have enough of a preview that my players could create the characters they've had in mind since they heard about this a year ago when the kickstarter hits? I seem to remember that they said it was NOT ready for the whole "99% - No Art" thing. (Gnomish American)

A: You can cobble something together with the Scion KS and the stuff we'll share. It won't be complete, though. (Neall) [383]

Q: Do you know if you'll make material available to backers as it is completed? I should be able to stretch material from the Scion: Origin level for a good while, but I'll take anything that makes planning easier. (Tiresias)

A: As soon as it's completed, it's going into editing, then layout, and then it'll be out. We're full steam ahead. I do plan on spoiling big system chunks. (Neall) [384]


Q: How would someone like Pandora be handled? She was given life/gifts by many of the gods. Does it work out that she is Hephaestus' child in the end with everyone sort of using their Boons on her? (Achilles)

A: Yes, she's a Created Scion of Haephestus.

One of the playtesters today actually mentioned that it's easy to get a lot of Skills and Purviews through Birthrights if you stack them; I mentioned that they then have to guard all of those relics and keep those Guides happy, to the point that you'd be spending all your time in-character doing that and eventually something bad would happen when you fucked up. (Neall) [385]


Q: Will it be possible to pick a Primordial or a Titan as the divine parent at character creation? (Dr. Quantum)

A: No.

There are some deities who might otherwise be classed as Primordials (they represent massive concepts, have world-bodies, manifest only in the Overworld) who make Scions - the Goddess Danu, Kitchi-Manitou, among others.

Titans do have children, but I really want to introduce separate Callings and Knacks that cause physical deformities for their Scions, and that just won't be in the core. (Neall) [386]


Q: Neall,is it true apotheosis takes more sacrifice this time? i mean,Hercules became immortal after burning on his own funeral pyre,Demophoon was also thrown by demeter in a fire to become a god . and divus julies got stabbed a ton. so,is apotheosis always like that? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: The answer is yes. (Neall) [387]


Q: So, I just read something rather interesting, a review of a RPG game about wrestling:

link to review

There's an bit about 20 pages of the corebook being devoted to essays explaining what the appeal of the wrestling genre is, basically a tool for helping the players figure out how best to have fun with the game (as I understand it).

The idea of such a thing is sort of wedged into a brain, and I'm struggling to form my thoughts into a coherent question.

So, uh... anything like that in Scion 2e? Have you read World Wide Wrestling, and have you taken anything from it? (This review has intrigued me enough that I'm going to give it a read myself.) (Prometheus878)

A: I have not read the book.

However, we take a lot of pains to drill down into what a myth is and how different types of myth cycles work, and how to make your games "epic" beyond throwing around lots of successes. Tales of success and tragedy follow patterns that can be manipulated, surprised, subverted or averted by the player characters. They offer wonderful toolboxes that the Storyguide can dig into to build patchwork plots and tropes into a coherent story. When your parent dies, are you in a theodicy story (that is a rumination on mortality), a journey to the underworld story (affecting a rescue of your progenitor through bargaining, representing ) or an extended family story (where you connect yourself to your larger family, thereby strengthening the community through ties of blood)?

So yeah, we go into what mythologies tick. (Neall) [388]


Q: So the Storypath Preview mentions the various modes of play (Action-Adventure, Procedural, Intrigue are the examples provided, though I'm not sure if others will exist down the line): does Scion incorporate these, or are they just an example of how modular Storypath is? (atamajakki)

A:Yeah, it works with those three. Judge Callings use a lot of Procedural and Intrigue action. (Neall) [389]


Q: Neall do other pantheons get suspicios of the Tuatha?Since so many of them slept with Titans and Titanspawn,even during the first war against them? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Not especially, although they think the Irish are fucking crazy.

On the other hand, the Devas tend to call anyone they don't like an asura (their term for the Titans). And the Orishas don't even believe in Titans: they went through the Middle Passage, and they know the worst monsters in the World are only human. (Neall) [390]


Q: I'm getting the impression this time the Titans while still completely devoted to their Purviews are not always tied to a Greater Primordial being,and exist as individual entities. iis that it? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Indeed, there are gods with much closer ties to Primordials than most titans have. (Lula) [391]


The etymology of "Mabinogion" isn't so much at issue as the fact it shouldn't be used as the name of the pantheon. Or else call the Tuatha "the Labor". I don't agree the Welsh make any sense as a "sub-pantheon". At all. They have more than enough deity level figures to have a full-on pantheon that stands toe to toe with the Irish, Norse, or anyone else for that matter. Two full families of divinity. (And sure, a lot of them are dead, but that never seems to stop Celtic gods.) And, yes, there is some really decent crossover. Lugh and Lleu really ca'tn be the same dude, but Manawydan and Mannanan sure as hell seem like one guy. Mannanan being the older version after the slew of Manawydan's adventures. (Ajax)

If it helps, I recommended calling the Welsh pantheon the Plant Dôn, and I think that's what we're going for. (Geoffrey) [392]

There's two families though, Don and Llyr.... and it's to be a mouthful for have both together. I'd just go with Tylwythau (Kindreds/Families) or Dau Tylwythau (Two Families/Kindreds) or just Tylwyth. It has the benefits of parallelism with Tuatha and with a sorta-antecedent with the 'sidhe analogue" being the Tylwyth Teg. (Ajax)

I'll keep that in mind. Thank you. (Geoffrey) [393]


So further research makes me agree that the Diyin Dine'e and the Kachinas shouldn't be competely Fatebound together, though strong attention should be given to their interrelationship, with Spider Grandmother being a Kachina primarily who is feared and respected by the Navajo none the less, etc.

That said, let's not pretend that the game isn't full of conflated Pantheons. The Manitou being a single Pantheon is itself lumping together the Ojibwe, Wabanaki, and Cree (and thus Nanabozho, Glooskap, and Wiskadjek). (glamourweaver)

Agreed. To a point. A portion of the Cree and of the Ojibwe/Chippewa share a reservation and a linguistic association, but that doesn't make them the same folks with the same beliefs. Except, of course, it kinda does, as the Oji-Cree are considered a group in their own right and derive from exactly that mix. And the Oji-Cree, the Algonquian and the tribes of the Council of Three Fires (the Ojibwe/Chippewa, the Ottawa and the Potawatomi) are all the Anishinaabe. And the Anishinaabe are sometimes regarded as being a descendant group of the Abenaki in their own legends (and the Abenaki are the descendants of the Lenape in some of those same legends... And the Abenaki are part of the Wabanki Confederacy of tribes. BUT, the Cree legends state that the Anishinaabe are THEIR descendants... All of them speak Algonquian languages, but that's not really going to help things out... As a lot of the groups involved are more linguistic "adoptees" than anything else.

However, after some poking around more than a little bit, it seems like most Algonquian groups have some concept of "Manitou" (with lots of different spellings and lots of different shades of meaning) that relates to supernatural creatures of some sort.... So what do you do? The cultures involved are, effectively, post-Apocalyptic. They have been pushed around and forced to live together in places far from home. It seems like a judgment call as to whether setting up an "Algonquian" pantheon is a good representation (with lots and lots of different names tacked onto each deity) or if it should be a set of pantheons in one of these cultural "confederacies" that is being floated for the Polynesian pantheons (or even, on a smaller scale, the Celts with the Irish/Welsh pantheons). (Ajax)

Interestingly, the Iroquois conception of Manitou is apparently different enough that my writer wants to make them their own little group within a pantheon, with Ioskeha/Sapling/Good Mind and Tawiscara/Flint/Bad Mind being twin brothers who aren't terribly fond of their four cousins. (Neall) [394]


Just for the record, I'd like to have the Nemetondevos, Loa, and Yazata as stretch goals. So, 2.5 pantheons.

Demigod's current slate is the Mespotamia, Mayan, Polynesian, Slavic, and Navajo pantheons. I'd really like to do the Welsh pantheon in a larger Demigod-era book of Arthurian myth. I'm also considering Lakota, Caananite, and Guarani for other supplements. (Neall) [395]


(pantheon wishlist)
At least one Aboriginal Australian Pantheon. Not to say one Pantheon can incorporate the entire continent's worth of cultural lore, but find the tradition that is most well known and lean in there. (glamourweaver)

The concept of the Dreamtime is interesting to me, since it suggests - in Scion terms - a pantheon that has an Overworld and not an Underworld. There's a few that are the reverse or have Overworlds they rarely use (like the Netjer), but vanishingly few (like the Alihah) have just an Overworld and no Underworld. (Neall) [396]


Q: How are Boons tiered? (Tiresias)

A: Hero, Demigod, God. (Robert Vance)

Q: How much can Hero-level Boons ruin someone's day? (Tiresias)

A: So, so much. (Robert Vance) [397]


Q: How much of the books are going to be available at the kickstarter? Will it be like Beast where you get the whole book minus art and formatting, or more like some of the other kickstarters where you don't get anything until the book is finished? (notanautomaton)

A: We'll be spoiling large snippets, but not the full text. (Neall)

Q: Also, what's the status of the Iroquois pantheon in Scion, does anyone know? I'm part Mohawk, so this is of some personal interest to me. (notanautomaton)

A: The Manitou are "of the Anishinaubaek", since those are the primary sources we're drawing from. However, after talking with a few Iroquois sources, we've decided that Winonah/Sky Woman's other children (Ioskeha/Sapling/Good Mind and Tawiscara/Flint/Bad Mind) are included, in a sort of angry cousin relationship to the rest of the pantheon. (Neall) [398]


Q: What's the Algonquian PSP like? (Egg)'

A: Having a conversation with the world, and the world listens. (Robert Vance) [399]


Q: Okay, here we go: I am a fan of the Chronicles of Darkness setting, I love the Supernatural/ X-Files Urban Fantasy stuff, I am a fan of playing mortals rather than super heroes. Now here is my dilemma, what I read of the new Storypath System I like it way more than the "old" Storyteller System. But Scion seems to be about superpowered heroes on their way to godhood. Is Scion still interesting for me regarding my preferences I listed above or should I stick with the Chronicles of Darkness/Hunter: the Vigil nWoD 2e rules even though I like the Storypath ruleset way more? (Belisarion)

A: Yeah, Origins will be exactly up your alley. (Neall) [400]

A: I'm a little late on this, but I wrote the urban fantasy part for Origins. I think it's the kind of thing you're looking for, and I've tried to make it something for people who don't want to escalate to the Hero/Demigod/God level to play. (Actually, I'd like to do this for every level. Sometimes it's fun just to be someone at Hero-level having adventures around the world without the whole "and someday, you will be a Demigod" thing.) (Geoffrey) [401]


Q: Will the Hero, Demigod, and God books have a premade adventure arc like in 1e? (SorcererNinja)

A: No, though we are considering one as a stretch goal. (Neall)

Q: Also, aside from the expanded pantheon roster, is there some new or expanded setting element compared to the first edition that you're excited about? (SorcererNinja)

A: I'm really excited about how we're blowing the doors off Terra Incognita and making Scion's World feel like one that has myths squirreled away everywhere. They're present from Origins and able to be explored and interacted with from the get-go. You can even play a normal person who grew up in some Land of Myth somewhere and emigrated to the World. Try getting a passport from Shambhala or the Kingdom of Prester John. (Neall) [402]


Q: Random point: can Inari be an actual god this time? (TechnocratJT)

A: Inari is both he and she, though I think we go with they for context. They're listed in the principle members of the Kami Pantheon:

Inari, Kami of Rice, Fertility, and Foxes
Callings: Creator, Healer, Lover
Purviews: Beasts (Fox), Fertility, Fortune, Journeys
*special: Scions of Inari may take Knacks from the Kitsune Paths. (Neall) [403]


Q: If it is okay may I ask about How Titans are done this time around. I really liked the original way they were done but could be convinced about a new way if it is interesting enough. (Jeremy Kopczynski)

A: Ask anything!

Titans are similar to Gods, but the term titan is, in many ways, largely political (but with Gods, the political rapidly becomes the metaphysical). The Devas, in particular, are liable to label any god they don't particularly like asura (and have done so to the Yazatas and the Aesir). Titans are extremely powerful deities who are largely consumed by the Purviews they embody, blasting it out without regard for and the ties to humanity that the Gods possess. For this reason, many of them have been locked away in foreign Terra Incognita, or bound by ties of blood and marriage, or gotten beaten down so hard they've slunk into some cave somewhere. They're distinct from a third class of deity, Primordials, who are deities of such overwhelming embodiment of elements of the World that they rarely manifest anywhere but the Overworlds, and often there as world-bodies - lands in and of themselves. (Neall)

I probably won't be backing it, just because I didn't really get into the original Scion. It was a very well produced book. My main problems with it were that the mechanics were already kinda wonky on Hero and I saw some of the rules for Demigod and God and it just didn't look like they worked. I'm also not a huge fan of a campaign taking up half the book. I do like the general idea of modern day myth, so I'll take a look at the preview, but it'd have to be a drastically different presentation for me to back it. Again, I might not be the target audience for it. (Lethe)

1) Completely new system with heavy playtesting;
1a) built to scale from Hero to God;
2) still well-produced
3) fiction is limited to single-page chapter fictions only and the campaign, if we do one at all, will be in a separate book as part of the KS

So...yeah, it's drastically different. (Neall) [404]


Q: In terms of purviews, are Titans largely focused on one (such as Fire for Surtr) while the gods tend to have a somewhat more diverse portfolio? (SorcererNinja)

A: Yeah, mostly. Most Gods have 4-6 Purviews (except Sun Wukong, who has an absurdly large number of them). Most Titans have 1-3. (Neall)

Q: As somebody who did not entirely hate the opening fiction, and who's enjoyed seeing the anthologies for various World and Chronicles of Darkness stuff even if I haven't actually read them, any chance of a Scion fiction anthology? (SorcererNinja)

A: Yes! Pledge to the KS. (Neall)

Q: Also, a mechanic question: does the new system of attribute scaling mean that Epic Attributes have gone away? Obviously, it sounds like Knacks are still there, but I mean the part where Epic Attributes gave you increasingly ludicrous bonus successes as you invested more dots in them. (SorcererNinja)

A: Most Attributes can benefit from what's called a Feat of Scale, which allows you to affect the power and efficacy of what you're doing rather than simply adding successes (though you do that too) and distinguishes between trivial and non-trivial targets. However, the three Physical Epics (Might, Dexterity, Stamina) are all Purviews themselves with Boons.

That is to say, almost every Hero-level Scion can pick up a car if they've got the juice, but those with Epic Might can juggle said car or hurl it like a shotput.

Knacks a drawn from the lists of the Callings, or the mythological archetypes you're drawing power from. Every character gets three Callings, and a lot of things stem from those. (Neall) [405]

Okay, stuff like this? This is what I've been waiting for. Please tell us more about these Feats of Scale. [big grin] (Immoral Support Network)

I talk more about it during a (planned) KS update, but Feats of Scale basically amplify what the successes in your rolls actually do. There is an element of success-adding when you face things that are of a different Scale (and like I said, it's different whether you're facing an important target or a trivial/environmental target), but it's really about how the successes are applied. (Neall) [406]


Oooh questions!

Q: In 1e I had a concept for a Scion who was the child of a Titanspawn (a shapeshifted oni, so they didn't know that one parent wasn't human) and a god, would I be able to pull this off in 2e (i.e. will there be any mechanical widgets for Titanspawn taint?) (prototype00)

A: Yes, you can - Scions can technically be titanspawn and/or Legendary Creatures. We don't have any such mechanics for Titan Knacks in the corebook, but those are earmarked for a supplement. There's definitely support for playing those creatures, though. (Neall)

Q: How are the purviews this time round? In 1e, they always seemed to get the short end of the stick, usefulness and power wise. (prototype00)

A: They're beefy miracles, but also leave you capable of creating free-form power effects however your Scion desires. (Neall)

Q: Fate always seemed like a wibbly-wobbly hand-wavy thing in 1e, it was basically the Storyteller's reason for everything with no mechanics involved. Is it changed in 2e? Can I play a Scion who embraces Fate (maybe in a fatalistic fashion a la the Aesir) with actual mechanical benefit? (prototype00)

A: Yep! People compared Fate earlier to a cheerleader helping you in your chosen role but going quiet when you step outside it. It's not mind control, but it definitely makes a lot of things easier. It's only when you get to Demigod that the cheerleaders start brandishing knives. (Neall) [407]


Q: I've got a question about Shapeshifting: How is it handled in this game? It's a big part of myths, so I know shapeshifting has come up. (Immoral Support Network)

A: Most Shapeshifting is done through Creature Knacks, Trickster Knacks, or the Greek pantheon Purview (Metamorphosis). (Neall)

Q: I have another question: Why do the more physical stats get Purviews of their own? What about the really intelligent, perceptive, charming, beautiful, etc. gods/goddesses? Or are those handled more in other Purviews now? (Immoral Support Network)

A: Knacks come in two levels of strength - Mortal and Immortal. Immortal Knacks are overt supernatural powers. Sages, Judges, Lovers...that's where the non-physical powers live. We've also got the Purviews of Fire, Passion, Deception, and Order that allow for certain effects along those lines.

But a lot of Gods in myth reflect great physical feats, so those get Purviews of their own. (Neall) [408]


In order to guard against misunderstandings, I just asked if playing mortals is just one option, not the sole purpose of Scion. I'm fully aware that Scion is primarily about playing "larger than life" heroes and godlike PCs. Still it's nice to see that the mechanics are designed with having every aspect of gaming in mind. (Belisarion)

Totally, I get that. Mortals play a roll in myths all over the world. I just don't feel that it should be the focus of the game. The "can we play mortals" has come up before, and I'm just hoping it doesn't take away from the larger-than-life aspect or full-on God-level exploits of the game, and turn it into "Urban Fantasy Godlings". There has been a fair bit of fiction like that, and it ruins the immersion and theme for me when I expect a story about Gods, and get mortal, low-powered detectives or reincarnated teenagers. (Purple Snit)

From what I've seen so far, the idea is that you and your players can choose to pause development at a level you enjoy. You want to be pulp-style heroes? Sure. You want to be mythic heroes who aren't yet fully divine? Absolutely. You want to be demigods clawing their way to divinity against the machinations of Fate and the pantheons they think are outdated and cruel? Do it. (Geoffrey) [409]


(on Scions from a different culture from their divine parent's / of a different pantheon than their home culture's)
I'm not going to tell anyone what to play at their table, but this topic is something we're addressing head-on in the book.

I can say that the art, or at the very least my art notes, is definitely going to reflect a lot of diversity in the World. (Neall) [410]


I figure pantheons vary a great deal in their relationship to race.

Some like the Aesir are barely aware of it as a concept (Vikings after all spread their seed and took wives and "wives" from all over the known world.... Also the Aesir having no relationship to whiteness and multi-racial Scions is a nice fuck-you to white-power Odinists).

The Orisha an Loa on the other hand went through the Middle Passage and from that are inseparably linked to black experience, making it VERY rare to take lovers or pick Chosen from outside that experience. (glamourweaver)

Re: òrìṣà and loa: You'd think so, wouldn't you? But they have their own internal complications related to ethnicity. First off, between 90% and 99% of their original kidnapped followers' New World descendants have at least a little non-African ancestry, for both good and really bad reasons. Second, some of the òrìṣà literally disguised themselves as other races in reaction to slavery's vicissitudes. They had many good reasons for doing so, most of them survival-related, but the results are still a little weird.

First, let's Google Image Search Oshun (aka Ọ̀ṣun). Did you notice how most of the pictures of her have long, straight hair? In fact, in one story (I think from Cuba), Ọ̀ṣun, realizing what the Middle Passage is going to do to beauty standards, asks Yemọja to give her pale skin and long blonde hair.

Next, let's do the same for Oxossi (that's the Brazilian spelling for Oṣóssí). You'll see a lot of bows and arrows, which have been an Oxossi signifier from the start. But … the jaguar skin and feather headdress? Why is he dressed like Motēcuhzōma?

Ọ̀ṣun is associated with beauty, and she sometimes appears in the Caribbean as a blonde white woman. Oṣóssí is associated with bows, forests, and hunting, and he sometimes appears in Brazil as a Native American from Mexico. From a 2016 perspective, those changes are … confusing, to put it lightly. I'm still processing what they mean, and what they mean for Scion. Maybe I always will be. (Lula) [411]


Q: Care to spoil anything about [Scale] in particular? (Immoral Support Network)

A: Two random examples:

Scale isn't just for people. Two A-5L Phoenixes dogfighting in orbit (or one Phoenix versus an Aberrant) might use the exact same rules for their plasma cannons as two individuals on the ground shooting each other with Voss 22P plasma pistols. When a Phoenix starts shooting at one of those guys on the ground, though, that's when things get messy (not in the mechanical sense, but in the "chunky salsa" sense). So a lot of systems just work a lot smoother and hand-in-hand without needing to worry about extra systems like Structural Levels.

Also: I noted during development that just as Scale goes up, it could also go down, providing handy rules for things like Ant-Man; Honey, I Shrunk the Kids; Fantastic Voyage; One Little Ship; and so on.

Both -- particularly the former -- are things that could certainly see use in Scion, but I think they'll have more applicability for Trinity. (Ian Watson) [412]

A: Scale - it's not just for characters, either. I managed to build Captain America's shield on the system as a Relic a starting character would take, such that it would be impervious to mortal weapons but being punched by a giant would still knock the wielder on his ass.

Actually, you could (and a few system iterations ago, for shits and giggles, I did) do the entire closing battles from Avengers and Age if Ultron in the Storypath system, wildly different power levels of characters, shifting fields (top of stark tower, rooftops, street level...) and all.

Which gives me confidence for Aberrant! (Dave Brookshaw) [413]


Q: My group has since switched to Exalted, where the ethos is much closer to the "you can do this much awesome stuff per encounter but then you'll need to rest" point that we hit towards the end of our Scion campaign, except as a baseline. What's the resource management like in 2e? (Apis Rex)

A: Legend is committed and spent, like Essence in Exalted but with a smaller amount. The former is to power active effects, while the latter is for big miracle charges. Getting Legend back isn't easy, but I'd say it's about as hard as fulfilling your Virtue in CofD (that is, once every session or two sessions). You'll be using effects where you commit Legend much more often, so it's how many godly effects you can be spouting at one time.

There's also Momentum, which is rarely spent on power effects but mostly acts as a direct diceadder for you. It's built up by narrative and dice failures. That's meant to build up slowly over the course of a scenes and then get tossed around when you need it. (Neall) [414]

Ah, I think I see. So Legend commitments are for small, ongoing effects and expenditure is for bigger, flashier, momentary things. (Apis Rex)

Committed Legend is still worth a fair bit—you have a much smaller pool of it than, say, a Solar's mote pool. One of the boons spoiled in the Alpha Slice, Heaven's Fire, lets you commit one Legend to be able to make long-range attacks with fire for the rest of the scene. That's probably a good reference point for the Legend economy. (Robert Vance) [415]

Q: Do you regain committed Legend like, say, committed Effort in Godbound, where it is returned to you when you uncommit it at the expense of the effect it's powering? (leetsepeak)

A: Yep. If the effect is somehow ended by an outside source, the Legend is uncommitted and returned. (Neall)

Q: Wait, when talking about Legend, are we talking about a Scion's Legend rating, their Legend points, or something else that doesn't map to first edition? (Anu)

A: Points, which are equal to your trait. Legend rating is unchanged from 1e. (Neall) [416]

Q: Would that mean you could only ever have 12 legend points at most even as a god? (KingCarnival)

A: Yes, although large cults can provide a "power sink". (Neall) [417]

Q: It was asked by someone else but I am repeating it but is there anything you want to tell us about player cults? The lack of rules for worship kind of bummed me out in the previous edition. (Jeremy Kopczynski)

A: We touch on them in the main book, but player cults are earmarked for a supplement or stretch goal. (Neall)

Q: How hard is to change callings? The example i have in mind is someone like Hercules if for some reason he decides not to be a Hunter anymore and wants to get wiser What would he have to do to become a Sage? i'm betting it takes more than four years at a great college (Nicolas Milioni)

A: It's pretty far from easy. You have to confront archetypal situations and then consciously reject or do the opposite of the Calling to shift your association with it. (Neall) [418]

And, I imagine, purposely ignore or resist the 'cheerleading' of Fate. (Scutarri)

Yeah. It's not like you're actively punished, but...if you're going to not be a Warrior, you'll have to get your ass kicked a bit. If you want to not be a Lover, you'll have to break a few hearts. (Neall) [419]


Origins covers the basic mechanics along with urban fantasy playstyles, pre-Visitation Scions, and Antagonists suitable for that level of play (anything from human sorcerers to giants). There's also room for players to be one of the supernatural beings of the setting, so they can have the "outside looking in" perspective of the supernatural instead of the "inside looking out" one of more ordinary mortals. (Geoffrey) [420]


(on why only a couple of the Theoi have their sacred animals as Beasts Purview subdomains)
I pushed back on having the whole Greek pantheon getting their sacred animals as Beasts subdomains—Hera doesn't really go around using peacock powers in the myth. Athena and Poseidon have mythic reasons for having the Beasts Purview.

If you want to see a pantheon where everyone has Beasts, you'll have to look to the Netjer. (Robert Vance) [421]


I'm not sure why you need a Translation Guide when just rebuilding your characters seem easier, but far be it from me to complain about more content. (atamajakki)

It'll be a stealth "this is how to build a character" advice guide. (Neall) [422]


Q: But at which level of legend do scions start to learn to channel new Purviews without Relics? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: IIRC, Demigod. (Dave Brookshaw) [423]

A Relic isn't the only way to channel a new Purview, mind. One of my playtest group's characters had five Purviews as a Hero. You just can't (again, IIRC, the XP system for Scion is very temp right now) buy a new one for the hell of it like a higher being can. (Dave Brookshaw) [424]


Q: [H]ow do magic and technology interact? I know you can have a gunslinging Scion, but could you do something like having super craft powers that let you be Tony Stark, or is divine power only for more traditional things like sweet-ass magic swords? If a terrifying beast of myth comes up from the ocean to attack Tokyo, can the Muggle military bring it down by shooting a whole bunch of really big guns at it, or do they need someone supernatural to come to the rescue? (Lontra Felina)

A: The Forge Purview is just as compatible with computer coding and super-science technology as it is with blacksmithing. (Robert Vance) [425]


I'm interested but the system preview we got has me worried.
Q: The system seems massively swingy, if your are a focused character with five relevant Enchancement and you roll 0 successes you get 0, but if you roll 1 you get 6, that seems uneven, particularly with defense numbers seeming static and much more modest. Given that the damage system has a lot in common with Fate, I'm concerned that will play poorly together. If a stamina 2 character takes 8 damage they'll need to fill their -4 box or be instantly taken out? (HidaO-Win)

A: Yes, but note that Enhancements are pretty powerful and - it's not stressed in the document but it is in the books - somewhat rare. There's a soft cap of 3 where we point out to Storyguides that this represents an overwhelming advantage. (Neall)

Q: Secondly the rules for Mixed Actions. Is saying I fire my gun 8 times a valid Mixed Action? How about fire a gun, throw a spear, launch a punch and swing my sword. If it is, it seems an amazing vehicle for abuse given that you default to the lower pool but you can arrange those to be decent (Also momentum) and then if you have a bunch of Enhancement arranged each single success becomes a huge success. (HidaO-Win)

A: You get two. (Neall)

That is all leaving out Scale, which if the players can access cheaply seems an even bigger path to abuse as it sidesteps the Enchancement cap and I can see why they would be given it for thematic reasons. (HidaO-Win)

It's not that cheap! (Neall)

I understand the preview is limited but what is there seems rife for rocket tag combat. (HidaO-Win)

I understand your concerns and they're valid, which is why we're extensively playtesting the system (moreso than what you've seen here). I don't want rocket tag any more than the next player. (Neall) [426]


The troll preserves [in the Kickstarter's Early Access doc] are an extended Troll Hunter reference, and that's actually exactly the way it should go down in a Scion game at Origin level. (Neall) [427]


So I am just throwing this out there because I am curious if I am an outlier. At let me preface by saying I'm not making any judgments with my statements below, think and read what you want I am just trying to get a sense of how others feel about and I have with the new edition of Scion.

There are certain dangers in having a 'living' religion in an RPG. Personally, I am defining 'living' as being still largely practiced, as with Hinduism (which really should be Hinduisms because the way we view it in the West, as one great unified religion is just plain incorrect) or as a religion still practiced within the last two centuries. Now let me say, I'm not a religious person but I respect people's right to believe in the Easter Bunny for all I care so long as they don't try and wrap me up in it. Anyway, I was a bit sketchy with the inclusion of the Hindu pantheon the first time around the inclusion of the Native American and Yoruba pantheons really kind of bugs me. I mean if you want to pick the top people who have had their culture co-opted or outright destroyed by outsiders in the last 200 years the natives of West Africa and America, if not at the top of the list, are surely near the top (and yes these groups are far from alone in this). While such sentiment is not universal I know quite a few Native Americans who would be pissed off by this because Native peoples have had so much of their culture stolen and misinterpreted that they view any frivolous use of their traditions, especially for a game, with suspicion. Especially when they are deeply held beliefs that are being tossed into alongside long 'dead' religions.

Now sure maybe there are not any who still follow the Algonquian "pantheon," but the scars of cultural theft and misuse are still rather recent. I'm sure some of you have heard about the recent controversy over JK Rowling's handling of Native beliefs (if not Google it, there are tons of great articles from back around June about why this sort of thing sucks.). I'm sure the only reason there is not such outcry here is that this book will probably sell less in its entire run than a Harry Potter related book will sell in a single week. Of course, I don't expect that to stop people nor do I believe in censorship (other than people censoring themselves as their conscience dictates) but I guess I am just wondering if I am alone in being a bit bothered by this? (hellrazoromega)

I'm writing four still-worshipped pantheons (Devá, Shén, Loa, Òrìṣà) and I'm nervous about all the same things you're nervous about. My primary motivation for joining this project was to leverage my academic and personal experience with those religious traditions to ensure they were depicted in a respectful and evocative manner. I will not do a perfect job, but I will damn well try.

When we create fiction, we have to walk the line between representation and appropriation. If we err too far in one direction, we end up depicting only safe, dead things which don't mean anything important to the people out there who never get to see themselves depicted in speculative fiction. If we err too far in the other direction, we take things that are important to real cultures and accidentally or purposefully reinforce the structures that make life hard for them. Scion errs on the side of representation, but to avoid going over the deep end into appropriation, we have to draw as directly as possible (within a lot of frustrating but inevitable creative constraints) on real experience from those pantheons' adherents, their sacred texts, etc. If we screw it up, we will hurt real people. If we succeed, then some kid whose family practices a religion no one has heard of, who's spent their life being misunderstood and made fun of because of something central to their life, will get to pick up this game and open it up and say, "When they made this game, they were thinking of and talking to people like me."

Do you have particular worries or pitfalls in mind for any of the pantheons you mentioned? (Lula) [428]


I'm pretty sure order is covering the old justice boons... though I was hoping for a vengeance purview... also I missed stars. (Gnomish American)

The Order Purview will cover vengeance carried out within the bounds of the law. The Passion Purview can govern the emotion of vengeance. (Robert Vance) [429]


And the various kinds of combat-worthy Callings and Purviews cover direct application of vigilante justice. On a tangent, it questionable whether the vigilante label would properly apply to Scions, even less to Gods. If one assumes either Might is Right or Divine Law as legitimate, then these models empower them to deal rightful justice. Democracy does not, but then again the existence of a class of sapients that have exceedingly different levels of power, knowledge, and personal abilities from Muggles puts the premises of democracy into question, since Gods, Scions, supernatural beings, and mortals are most definitely not 'created equal'. (Irioth)'

It might be technically illegal to go around doing vigilante justice, but the cops don't tend to mind when you punch out the frost giant in Time Square or haul in the weird snake cult guy with mind control eyes. As a whole, Scions don't have Batman or Spider-Man reputation problems. (Robert Vance) [430]

Q: I find myself wondering if Fate has anything to do with this, or if it's just a setting choice you made? (horngeek)

A: Nothing to do with Fate—Scions can get into trouble with the law just like anyone. On the other hand, a lot of things that Scions deal with are Big and Scary and completely beyond the scale of the law enforcement/government. It makes life a lot easier for law enforcement to just drop the charges and be thankful they're still alive. (Robert Vance) [431]


Q: Out of curiosity, is Passion basically a purview for all kinds of emotion? Like if you wanted to have a deity of fear and nightmares, would they have Passion (fear)? (Meribson)

A: Passion encompasses all emotion. It's possible (and common in the corebook pantheons) to narrow it down to a subset, like Love or Fear or Anger, and there's a mechanical reward for taking that limitation.

(this also applies with Beasts and Artistry) (Robert Vance) [432]


Q: Ok so Im currently obsessed with mystic alchemy and occultism. THe pursuit of divinity, perfection, and ultimate knowledge are all themes i love very much. Would my budding young alchemist with his eyes set on distilling the universal medicine be a viable character for scion? (Wiwuno)

A: Definitely. (Lula) [433]


We could go the complete "you wants Jehovah and Allah? You won't like it" route, linking Jehovah with El and Allah with the pre-Islamic Arabian pantheon's moon God. That'd fit Scion's world.

It would also anger just about everyone.

Really, it's a good thing Neall's in charge if this, not me. (Dave Brookshaw) [434]


Q: Does anybody have any hint when the Demigod/God KS is planned to occur (I hope it shall be another joint KS for the last two corebooks). Not so much to get even more Pantheons (the ones we shall get with the first two books and stretch goals shall likely fulfil my character concept needs for a good while, although more PSP are always useful). However, since I'm a big fan of high-powered play, and disinterested in 'zero to hero' and street-level playstyle, I perceive the game as woefully incomplete with just Origin and Hero, no matter how much the current KS stuff is cool and interesting. I also wonder if and how much the game shall include rules to build characters with an higher power level than the bottom one. I know I shall in all likelihood have little interest in playing pre-Visitation Scions, and I might often get willing to start characters at the Demigod level. Of course, this assuming my perception of the power level of the various tiers is not too off the mark.

I'd also like to complete my compilation of Callings, Purviews, and PSP (Irioth)

A: Demigod and God will probably be sometime next year [ie, 2017]. Dunno what my plans beyond mechanics are.

No more Callings, unless you want a custom Calling (which might be a thing we give mechanical guidance on). (Neall) [435]


Q: Could I play a Luke Cage kind of bulletproof guy as a Scion? How hard is it to be bulletproof? (leetsepeak)

A: The Epic Stamina Purview has you covered. (Robert Vance) [436]


I would really like to hear more about the other character types available at the Origin tier, how they vary and do their thing mechanically (broad stokes, of course), and what we could expect them to be able to do at higher tiers, if possible. I would really like to use Scion to run games were Peter Pan, the Once and Future King, Alice, the Boogeyman, and the Horseman of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow are all in a Band together. Something approaching a cross between Changeling and Once Upon a Time. I figure I can use Boons and Knacks and most of the underpinnings of the system without too much tweaking. (Malckuss)

At the Origin tier, not a lot of beings that aren't sorcerers or Scions have access to Purviews. Most supernatural entities have a custom Path, which gives them custom Edges, Knacks, and other little powers. Often you can raid their Knacks as a Scion if your Path gives permissions - Scions of Inari can take Kitsune Knacks, etc.

But yes, you can run OUAT easily enough. (Neall) [437]

Q: Thanks for the reply, Neall! As a follow up, how easy will it be to write up our own purviews, boons, knacks, ect? Is there a possibility of adding something like the custom pantheons material for things of that nature to the companion? (Malckuss)

A: I'll be covering how to do your own PSPs, but it's not hard. You'll be able to build your own Knacks. (Neall) [438]


Q: If you are a Born/Chosen Scion that has a supernatural entity as their (other) parent and Guide, but your parent God has no special tie to that supernatural entity's race, can you still tap the custom Path ? In other words, my Scion has a Nine-Tailed Kitsune as a Mommy and Guide, can she get the Kitsune custom Path and Knacks even if Daddy was Izanagi or Susano-o instead of Inari ? (Irioth)

A: Paths create a feature known as a permission, or a narrative justification as to why you're able to take that powers or play around with a satyr's syrinx or whatever. Some permissions are explicit - if you're a Scion of Inari, you can take Kitsune Knacks. Some are implicit - a Norse Scion who is a physically-adept woman taking Valkyrie Knacks, for example, after hanging out with Odin and accepting the role as such.

In the current design, you only have a certain number of Knack slots open at any one time, so taking a bunch of Creature or Legendary Knacks means you can't take Calling Knacks, which are usually more broadly applicable as opposed to specific or powerful-with-a-drawback (e.g. limited shapeshifting but always with a fox tail). (Neall) [439]


I think you'd probably take the Kitsune path as your origin path and otherwise proceed as normal. That Scions of Inari gain access to their knacks is suggestive of them access the same power, not necessarily of also having to be kitsune, so I think the answer is pretty simple. (leetsepeak)

Hopefully this is the case. But I have heard it said that the paths of some supernatural beings are curtailed at lower levels, like Hero or demigod, I mean that actually is completely fine if you can just take regular Scion knacks from that point on (not every supernatural being has to have a path to godlike power, after all), but if you can't fill in the rest of the tree, then that leads to some progression issues. (prototype00)

Yeah, there's a suite of Knacks and Edges you can take at those tiers if your Path and permissions are fine with it. If you're just a kitsune or satyr, that's where you stop progressing supernaturally, unless you decide to go study tengu martial arts or something. (Neall) [440]


Q: Have you guys worked out a system for character advancement? (leetsepeak)

A: We do have an advancement model, which also incorporates downtime adventures. I'll see about a preview later in the KS. (Rose Bailey)

[...]

Q: How customizable will the Paths and Permissions be with the books being offered so far? Can I play something like say... "Grendel's Brother" from the get go? (prototype00)

A: It's pretty easy to make your own. At Gen Con, we were improvising them on the spot for booth demos. (Rose Bailey) [441]

Q: So just wondering would this be something that happens during the normal course of play (i.e. is it normal to play the half-kitsune Scion or the Daughter of the Baen Sidhe with the deadly song) or is it super-special snowflake the DM has to do some extra work kind of stuff? (prototype00)

A: It's really, "Does it make sense for this Path to tap into this suite of effects?" acting as permissions. An inherited Scion of Lugh, for example, gets access to Fomorian powers, due to Lugh's heritage. A Chosen wouldn't. But neither gets more Knacks than the other, just more lateral room to grow. Sometimes we give you the permissions explicitly, other times it's the Storyguide's call.

If your Path is, "Another Son of Grendel's Mother", that's a perfectly fine Path and gives you lots of effects, but I'm not sure it'd be appropriate for a Scion (unless Beowulf really DID nail Grendel's Mom...).

I should note that the focus of the game is always going to be on the title stars. We want a big, bold, and vibrant world that encompasses a lot of edge case easily (some pantheons are nothing BUT edge cases). The ability to easily play stuff other than Scions is a happy design element. (Neall) [442]


Just to double track -- this isnt for a special deluxe book, this is just a straight up funding project for books that will be later in the same format (I am a sucker for OP's premium book options when offered) (Praetorian)

Yes, this is a conventional hardcover RPG book. The one you get from the KS will be a bit nicer than the PoD, but the same as the retail version. (Rose Bailey) [443]


Q: Do [legendary creatures] have Mantles?If so,which are the mechanical effects of a legendary creature's mantle? or a scion's? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: As far as I know, only(?) Gods have mantles. (Robert Vance) [444]

I know Heroes have,Neall mentioned it

Legend has certain themes according to the dot rating, which may be "mantled" by the god to produce certain divine attributes and power sets. These are acquired by a system of heroic deeds (both in actual play or in an outright character generation). If you're play a Scion, your first dot is always, "Scion of X, God of Y," which allows you to adopt a lesser set of powers of your parent's most famous mantle. While parentage is clear and may even trace back generations through the Legend system, Scions needn't (and, in fact, it's hard for them) be clones of their parents. Certain relics may be Legend dots, meaning you can't mantle those powers without them.

Q: How much (if any) of the aove Info aplly to LegendaryCreatures? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: I think that's a bit dated, and some of our thought on mantles has drifted from it. The "adopting a lesser set of powers" has become, I think, the innate access to one of your parent's Purviews and sharing a Calling with them, which non-Scions obviously would not do. (Robert Vance) [445]


On the other hand, I can't help questioning the wisdom of making [the Tuatha's] Welsh cognates a separate pantheon, since a number of the gods are the same but with a Welsh pronunciation of their names. Add on the Gallic gods as yet another pantheon (even though Lugos, Lugh, and Lleu are the same god in different languages), and there seems to be a lot of Celtophilia going on at the expense of other cultural groups, most of whom are represented by a single pantheon to cover all of their various subcultures. (Black Flag)

Lugos and Lugh might be the same God, but Lleu and Lugh definitely aren't. Despite the suspiciously skilled hand, they're radically different in terms of personality and origin. The Welsh are sufficiently different to warrant another pantheon.

The Nemetondevos were covered in 1e, and a private goal of mine was to re-enable play for every 1e pantheon.

But Celtophilia? How dare you! My Irish, Welsh, and Scottish ancestors turn in their graves at the very insinuation! (Neall) [446]


Q: Will Einherjar be playable? (glamourweaver)

A: Should be. (Robert Vance)

Q: Shouldn't Brighid have Forge? (glamourweaver)

A: Yeah, she's got it. (Robert Vance) [447]

A: Brigid not having Forge was a mistake on the part of myself and the author, since it was only decided to be included as a core pantheon rather late.

Some Gods have more Purviews than others; this is a function of both total Boon investment into Purviews and Legend. Some Gods have the bare minimum for a Purview to be "associated" with them; others have every single Boon in the Purview, and then some. I think, currently, Sun Wukong has a truly ridiculous number of Purviews associated with him, but in the current playtest build this means he doesn't have investment beyond the Demigod level in anything but the Epics, and those just barely. (Neall) [448]

Q: Does a god being highly focused have any positive effects for their scions? (vonpenguin)

A: Nothing mechanical besides Path-related effects. You get one Calling, one Purview, that's it - no more no less. (Neall) [449]

Q: Does that mean that instead of using Boons for most of his non-epic purviews [Sun Wukong] has to use Marvel's to achieve similar effects to gods who have boons invested? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Yes, at a much greater cost and far less efficacy. (Neall) [450]


Brigid not having Forge was a mistake on the part of myself and the author, since it was only decided to be included as a core pantheon rather late. (Neall)

...That seems a bit weird to me, 'cause I thought the Tuatha had been slated for the core for a good while now. (marin)

I think he meant "core Purviews". Forge and Prosperity were originally going to be bonus content. (Robert Vance) [451]


(on including Goibniu and his brothers)
Goibniu is one of the most important gods in the Irish Pantheon. (Incendax)

He's one of the ones mentioned most often, yes. Important?

Still, if we don't add him in the next draft, Gods are splendidly easy to add. (Neall) [452]

Q: I didn't understand well the Kitsune stuff

If my japanese character has something in common with the magical japanese beasts can i take part of their "antagonists" knacks and special power?

What i mean is, for example: If i'm a son of a persian fire god, can i take something from a Fire Djinn? (with path in common) of course with narrative exploit (ElanConnor)

A: It's a little more structured than that.

"Kitsune" is an origin path for kitsune characters, which comes with some knacks attached to it that reflect their typical legendary powers. Scions of Inari, the fox kami, are able to learn kitsune knacks without having that path (or being a kitsune at all) by virtue of their divine parentage. Likewise, Scions of prophetic gods like Apollo or Bastet can learn the knacks used by oracles. (Robert Vance) [453]


Q: Since the Aztec purview is about sacrifice now i got curious
1)How do a Teotl performs the sacrifice,she has to shed her own blood or others?
2)Does it has to be Willing sacrifice?
3)Can things other than blood be a sacrifice? like wealth? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: The ritual sacrifices performed by the Aztecs actually included a great variety of things. Their were human sacrifices and self-bleeding, but also offerings of food, flowers, and effigies. Nextlahualli encompasses all of these. (Robert Vance) [454]

thats sounds a bit problematic,cause other scions have to play important prices to use their purview. you've make services to a Manitou or follow a important limitation as a gas but a Aztec scion just has to give up flowers and efígies, which are super common and that's it? it seems too eaasy (Nicolas Milioni)

The rules for sacrifice distinguish between things that are super common and easy to get and things that take a whole lot of effort or have steep legal consequences attached. (Robert Vance) [455]


Q: A clarification: the companion is going to include Do-it-Yourself Pantheons, with rules to make PSPs and the Atlanteans being the given example of a new Pantheon created with these rules, and Do-It-Yourself Purviews, with rules to make sub-Purviews. It is also going to include Frost. Shall the latter be the given example of a new sub-Purview created with these rules, or a new extra Purviews ? (Irioth)

A: Frost is an independent, standalone Purview encompassing cold, ice, and winter. (Robert Vance)

Q: By corebook canon, are Boons of ice and frost within Fire, or not ? (Irioth)

A: No. (Robert Vance) [456]


So two boons to choose from:

I'm guessing these are the Heroic level ones, and at higher Tiers, you get two more to choose from? (prototype00)

There's actually three boons—one of them, Sink Hopes, isn't included in the preview. Most Purviews have three Hero-level boons; Pantheon Signature Purviews have two.

The number of boons at Demigod and God levels is still up in the air, but the "one for each area of play" model worked well at the Hero level and I expect to stick with three. (Robert Vance) [457]


So, with the preview for the Water Purview, not only do we have some nifty Boons, but some insight into the Boon Design Method.

Apparently the Boons will map to one of the three Play Types they talk about in the game. One for Action, one for Procedural, one for Intrigue. That should be interesting. (Kyman201)'

That's a rule of thumb and a helpful design guideline, rather than an ironclad rule. Some Purviews have boons focused on particular arenas of action. Epic Strength doesn't have a mystery-solving procedural boon. (Robert Vance) [458]


Does anybody know the Virtues of the Shen and the Kami? I can't find them anywhere. (Dr. Quantum)

Yin and Yang for the Shen, according to one of the writers, saying "they literally maintain the universe by guarding the balance and the cycle between positive and negative forces, but the place of an individual in that cycle is often confusing and paradoxical." (marin)

Yīn and Yáng is correct. "Daoism and Confucianism" is tempting, but we already have that conflict represented in the pantheon itself. (Lula) [459]

Not to mention you've got Buddhist converts like Sun Wukong; and those gods with Deva origins who came in with Buddhism like Yanluo and Guanyin.

And the whole concept of a Celestial BUREAUCRACY is inherently Legalist and at odds with Master Kung's feudalist teachings, but I assume like the Han Dynasty the Shen just pretend that isn't the case. (glamourweaver)

Let me tell you, a certain philosopher is NOT HAPPY that he is on the pantheon principals list. (Lula) [460]


Q: I saw it mentioned that Sun Wukong has a much larger number of purviews associated with him than his peers. would you mind telling me which ones? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: All three Epic physicals, Artistry (Opera), Beasts (Monkeys), Chaos, Deception, Journeys, Passion (Laughter), War. We'll see if they all make it to the end—I'm told I assigned way more purviews on average than the other writers, so I'll probably cut one or two of those. (Lula) [461]


Q: Sorry guys, but i didn't understand well what mantle is:

The "mantle" a god can wear is the other face of the god? maybe in another culture?

For example: Mithra is a god in Yazata Pantheon, in Deva And he's loved even by Roman. All this face of the same god are different mantle?

Hades - Pluto
Venus - Aphrodite

When a god is shared between pantheons, he's changing the mantle...? right? (ElanConnor)

A: Sometimes, but not always. Ares/Mars has two very distinct mantles depending on whether he's in a Greek or Roman context. Yama belongs to several pantheons, but doesn't seem to have different mantles for them.

In addition, some Gods have multiple mantles within the same pantheon. The Orisha concept of "caminos" is a good example of this. (Robert Vance) [462]

Q: A solar deity like Ra who changes his moods depending where the sun is, is aclso changinc mantles? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: I don't think that makes sense for Re, but I'm not a Kemetic expert. (Robert Vance) [463]

Q: Then could you tell me. What's the difference between a god simply changing his mind and personality with the time and a god changing his mantle? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Ares didn't become Mars because he calmed down. He became Mars when the Romans saw that he was now this calmer, imperial god of war, and began worshipping him as such, defining the new Mantle within Fate. A God changing his mind is much less dramatic than changing between their Mantles—Mars can still go back to being Ares if he feels like it. (Robert Vance) [464]

King Yama is literally too busy to make mantles. He's been saying he'd get to it eventually ever since the Buddha showed up. (Lula) [465]


Q: Can one scion change the fate it was set for him, or was it locked forever? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: No more than Thor can change his being doomed to die at Ragnarok. (Robert Vance)

Q: Can A scion permanently curse someone with a dark fate of their own (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Maybe at Demigod or God level. (Robert Vance)

Q: Do anyone besides the gods and their scions have acess to wyrd? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: I'm don't know the specifics of how this is being handled in the system, but in mythology there are mortal völga who are able to use Wyrd. (Robert Vance) [466]


Q: Hey. I was wondering. With the Artistry purview,could i create a Dorian Gray like scion? I'm thinking of painting myself and Using Artistry so damage i take in battle go to the picture instead. Is it possible at Hero Level? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: You could do something like that with Artistry marvels, especially if you focus in Painting. (Robert Vance) [467]


Q: How "formal" will the language and rules in scion be? So far I would describe what has been previewed as kinda like "formal light", not overly mechanically rigid but still clear and specific. My concern is more around what the rules and gameplay sections will look like. The biggest time waste at our table right now is trying to parse out edge case mechanical interactions in the context of EX3's "natural language" rules section. I'm hoping Scions rules will be a bit more structured and presented in a more "formalized" manner that makes things more clear cut. (SpruceStripedGoose)

A: "Formal light" is a good way to describe the tone we're going for. (Neall) [468]


Q: This has almost certainly already been asked and answered, in which case I'm sorry, but I remember hearing that the Orisha/Loa won't have a Titan. Who are they fighting, then? (Crying)

A: The classic antagonists of Yoruba myth are evil sorcerers. (Robert Vance) [469]


Q: Question for Neall or Robert Vance:

One of you said awhile back that scions will be able to channel purviews through their guides as well as through relics. But I haven't seen anything that says guides grant a motif like relics do. So can a guide grant a motif or will the scion be required to channel that purview through a motif granted either by the PSP or a relic? (Demac)

A: Guides don't grant motifs.

Pantheon and Relic motifs are going to be most Scions' go-to, but there are some other ways to gain them. (Robert Vance) [470]


Q: Hey, would powers like human clay be returning eventually? The power to create a new species was cool. (KingCarnival)

A: Yes. One of the Incarnations depends on being able to make humans, basically. (Neall) [471]


Q: I have noticed that we are again seeing a type of animal (or the more troubling "all") associated with the Beasts purview.

If this is how we still handle the Beasts (nee Animal) purview, can you please give a more direct answer within the text regarding whether a Scion must inherit their Parent's specific animal? (PHGraves)

A: We will, and the answer is "nope." You can even pick the full Beasts Purview, without limits.

Same for Passion and Artistry. (Robert Vance) [472]


(discussing the completeness of the pantheon previews)
I don't think we've actually had a full pantheon writeup yet; it's just that previous ones have had a bit more info. I assume the Teotl's godrealms, Virtues, etc. will be in the full writeup. (marin)

Actually, you have - pantheon writeups are 7.5k apiece, so the Greek and Irish pantheons were complete. So was the Netjer, but, uh, they'll be revised a bit. (Neall) [473]

Also, the Theoi and Netjer writeups don't have example Titans, like the Tuatha writeup does. (Noneofyourbusiness)

They'll be expanded a bit to cover that. (Neall) [474]

Q: How does this work out then, since every Pantheon has their PSP and boons and two virtues along with the relevant fluff segment, but the previews we've seen so far don't all have those. I assumed the previewed PSPs and virtues would be in their own segment, maybe in the purviews chapter and virtues in the chargen zone. If they all add up to the total wordcount of the pantheon, every one of those previewed is going to need to be massaged to lose text from some areas and fit the others in. (Alpharius)

A: PSPs and Virtues are covered elsewhere. (Neall) [475]


Q: Considering that the gods are actually real within The World, how does the concept of Euhemerism come into being. (Ostarion)

A: Like monotheism, I imagine it'd be an (effective) culture-jamming tactic. (Robert Vance) [476]

Basically.

Euhemerization doesn't precisely exist in Scion per se, since on some level Gods and Heroes actually did the stuff they're accorded to, even if it gets overwritten or rewritten by Fate.

Since a mantle is a thing, you can steal it from another God, however. (Neall) [477]

Q: So, hoping this isn't thread necromancy after a week as I haven't yet appeased the Baron, but one thing I gotta ask about this: How exactly would it happen? I mean, even assuming that the various gods and spirits and such are more subtle than the myths make them seem, you'd think they'd ​somehow​ intervene if someone is culturally jamming them. I'd have thought if you went to Japan and told people who make offerings to the kami of a lake "No, cut that out, you don't worship lakes," then the lake kami would take offense. Unless I'm missing something? I admit I'm not sure if that's actually how it's done. I imagine there's more to it. (CreepyShutIn)

A: Gaius Iulius Caesar conquers a hypothetical ethnic group that practices Kami worship. After the military and political subjugation, the Roman priests you come in. "Hey, you know your Susano-wo, the storm god with a bad temper? He's the same guy as our Zeus. Some of your gods are just kings and saints who did cool stuff. That oughta make your forced conversion a little less awful!"

So, our hypothetical tribe ends up worshipping the Theoi under the names of various kami. The Romans might need to introduce some changes into the group's traditional religious practices—Gods aren't super picky about that sort of thing, but they do care about it.

What does Susano-wo do when some upstart deity jacks his swagger and his worshippers? Getting a Band of Scions to teach the Romans a lesson is a good start. (Robert Vance) [478]


Q: About Knacks. I was trying to figurate what Liminal Knacks do. Can you tell me? (Nicolas Milioni)

A: Liminal Knacks are about stealth, death, and thresholds. They do things like help you blend into cities and villages instantly, make strangers forget they saw you no matter how odd you appear, and bypass locks or use doorways with sympathetic teleportation. (Neall) [479]


So, I'm sure a few of these have been asked before, but I haven't been able to find them specifically or in some cases I was hoping for more clarification. Hope you don't mind kind of a barrage of questions, I've got a lot of them.

Q: The Aztec pantheon has been known to demand hearts ripped out of living humans to keep the sun moving through the sky. It's well established that this isn't the only thing they do by a long shot, and it's nice that the sacrifices get the best afterlife, but it is pretty distinctive. My question then is: What do Apollo, Ra, Amaterasu and other sun-related deities say to that? If there were no more such sacrifices, would the sun chariot stop? Would the goddess hide in a cave again? Would the barge be swallowed by Apophis? (CreepyShutIn)

A: "The World has many histories. The World is a synthesis. The World is many creation myths and epics, collapsed and smoothed over by processes left for contemplation by the wisest Gods, or given to them by the Primordials. When scientists dig, they find flaked stone tools and pre-human hominid bones. When they study flesh and blood, they find mitochondria and DNA. The World’s speed of light is a constant, and its physicists search for ways to unite General Relativity and Quantum Field Theory."

"Yet they know myths have standing. The fact that the World rests on the Great Turtle is literally true, but you can only perceive it from a certain point of view. From another such perspective, some humans are descended from bears. This is more than a state of mind. From this point of view, you can get a glimpse of the shell mighty enough to hold mountains, or see the fanged skulls of ancestors. History follows similar patterns. Archeologists find flint axes and copper helmets from the Achaean period of Greek history, but not the tripod prizes and other elements mentioned by Homer, unless they fit conventional history -- mostly."

If the Titan Apophis slays Re and sunders his crown, fraying the mantle of Re/Sun Deity beyond recovery, the World will continue - but it will be colder, in ways both literal and not. Other pantheons will pick up the slack, but all the gods and Titans of the Sun will shudder in sympathy, and our own purely material globe will swell red in pain and convulse in great solar winds. Life will go on, and the Sun will rise, but it will not be the most pleasant. Should all the deities of the Sun perish, a mere ball of gas and light will illuminate the World, to steal Pratchett's words. A piece of creation will be forever gone, the poetry guttered out with the last God's life blood.

Each pantheon reinforces the structure of the World, making it stranger - but also stronger. (Neall)

Q: Just how well understood is the supernatural? We have a surprising amount of people studying myths of all kinds relating to people doing incredible things; that was practically the point of Mythbusters. Gotta figure mortals in the World are studying the tall tales and urban legends that pop up here and there, and probably televising it. Especially when everyone and their dog has a phone ready to record at a moment's notice. So how much do most mortals know, and how much do experts know? (CreepyShutIn)

A: “Once upon a time,” says the storyteller. People in our world hear the phrase and know it means “a long time ago,” or “before things were the way they are today,” or “in the beginning.”

In the World, “once upon a time” was last week, and everyone's still watching the story unfold on the evening news. In the World, legends weren't just made back in the day before video cameras and the internet. They're striding down the streets downtown right now, and #TeamTezcatlipoca is trending on Twitter. In the World, nobody disputes the wisdom of knocking on wood to ward off malignant spirits, because malignant spirits spew out of the Axis Mundi next door all the time. Inhabitants of the World wake up to just a little more wonder and a few more omens every morning.

That's not to say the curtain between the mundane and the divine is shredded daily, or even often. Most people never see a God in the flesh. They work, party, study, travel, and make love without any overt interference from mystical forces nine times out of ten. But mystical forces live in their neighborhoods, and that tenth time could be the one to tangle a person's Fate up in something much bigger than herself.

The World has the oceans, continents and nations we know, but under the influence of meddling Gods, magic and obscure, supernaturally twisted history, some of the deep details might be a bit different from what you’re familiar with. You may not know of certain sovereign states -- mere dots on a map -- that go unrecognized by the UN, but are well-known to many mystics and Scions. Some rivers take different courses, or sprout obscure tributaries. Any country might have big cities you’ve never heard of, and that’s before getting into Terra Incognita.

Other sections of this book delve into the day to day realities of the World. Despite its superficial normalcy, and close resemblance to the world you and your fellow players live in, take the paragraph above as permission for the Director to make changes and create new places in the World without feeling that they might be “deviating from canon.” Plus of course, you should be prepared for fictional parts of the world in Scion’s books, where a good story might be found in a fictional neighbourhood that could belong to many cities, or a business that only exists thanks to divine interference. (Neall)

I have to admit I'm kind of upset about the Bastet/Sekhmet thing. I understand why it was done, I'm just wondering if there was an alternative. Maybe make them like some of those Irish deities, a triple goddess? Sekhmet, Hathor and Bastet, quite distinct from one another but also clearly linked. (CreepyShutIn)

Well, two things here.

We're revising a lot of the way we look at the Egyptian deities, because the response was so temperamental, and I'm calling in a few more experts on other pantheons to look at them as well. Keep in mind that identities in Scion are mutable, and - to a degree - transferable. And lastly, if you don't like the canonical interpretation, we will have a paid community content structure. Make your own, polish it up and back it up with research, and you'll both enrich the game line and the community by making your own stuff and putting it out there. If you want to make a Scion Shard where the Gods imbue their signature Relics with their Mantles, such that mortals can wear said Mantles by wielding the relics, by all means - go for it. (Neall)

Q: Speaking of the Irish pantheon, the preview noted that they had few primordials, but included "Fintan, the Salmon of Wisdom" among them, and that most of the others died in a flood. I'm not a scholar, so I'm probably missing something here, but I thought primordials were specifically incarnations of something deep and primal that were too big, metaphysically, to even fit in the world. How does that fit with a salmon? Can​ primordials even drown? (CreepyShutIn)

A: Primordials can die and dissolve into the metaphor-laden chaos of the Overworld, although it's rather hard to tell if they're dead or not - they're not exactly chatty or approachable at the best of times. Not every mythology has the same kind of Primordials, either. (Neall)

Q: Obviously many immortal or otherworldly beings don't really follow modern, human ethics, especially as they seem to change every century. That's part of the fun, after all, finding these strange and frankly dangerous beings in our familiar environments. But I wonder, is that a rule? Is the aes sidhe​ that moves to Dublin to pursue a career in fashion simply not able to grasp the human morals around him, or can he learn, adapt and integrate, even go native? Could a community even arise, of humans and fae in rural Ireland, or are they just too different on a basic level to really live in close proximity for very long? (CreepyShutIn)

A: Yes, they can integrate. The Jersey Devil might run a pawn shop over the river. If he does, he's probably an asshole. (Neall)

Q: Is there an Aesir or possibly Vanir associated with ice and/or wolves? And if not, which of the Nordic gods do you think would be most likely to help out a lycanthrope praying to regain control of her life? (CreepyShutIn)

A: Not sure, but Höðr is associated with ice and darkness. He'd probably be willing to help, if you can get him to stop being so morose. (Neall)

Q: The pantheon-specific motifs are fascinating and a cool insight into how Scions of these faiths might use their divine abilities, but some of them seem a bit odd for some uses. For example, one known boon is imbuing one legend to be able to make ranged attacks with fire for a scene: It seems a bit awkward to have to come up with new verses every time you throw one, or politely ask a Kami or Manitou for each new fireball. How would a Scion do that sort of thing? (CreepyShutIn)

A: Boons don't have to conform to motifs, though cosmetically they very often do, since that's the effective explanation for how their magic works - puffing out fireballs from your lit cigar, that sort of thing. Purviews represent your dominion over an elemental force of the World. If you say your Scion is muttering prayers to the Kami or Manitou, I wouldn't force the player to actually do so each time. Although for this example, you really only have to do it once in the scene, and the Kami will respond to your commands. (Neall)

Q: This one's a systems question, something I'm not sure I understood: Can one reassign all imbued legend between scenes? Like, if I have five legend points and five purviews, can I spread them evenly in one scene to get maximum social benefits, then come into the next scene with all the Fire and PSP boons? (CreepyShutIn)

A: Legend is only imbued for as long as it's imbued, circular as that might be. Think of it this way: you have a certain amount of metaphysical juice in the tank from your divine narrative. You can pour this juice to fuel certain abilities, and then pour it back in your tank when you don't want to fuel them anymore. Some abilities are so potent they burn out your juice right off, though. So, yes, you can imbue some Boons or Marvels in one scene and then be back next scene. Be careful, though - regaining Legend is tough, and requires you to submit to the whims of Fate.

Or it requires sacrifice. Whichever you'd prefer. (Neall)


Q: Regarding Callings: Will they have a transcendent form, akin to the avatar purviews or 1e's Ultimate Attributes? (yukikaze)

A: Probably not. (Neall)

Q: On another note: earlier, a purview for patron deities of cities was mentioned. Can you please tell us a little more about that, and how strongly said city would have to be tied to a pantheon's sphere of influence (i.e., could a Scion of Parvati who was born and raised in Pittsburgh aspire to become that city's divine patron)? (yukikaze)

A: The Prosperity Purview is being reworked a little to provide more for city action and being, well, the heroes of neighborhoods, the demigods of boroughs, and the Gods of Cities and Peoples and Nations. The city's influence is a chicken-and-egg situation - expect a lot more Vedic temples to sprout up in Pittsburgh and a statue of Parvati (or the Scion) to pop up in front of the Cathedral of Learning.

Purviews are dominions, but Gods are their Purviews in a very unique way. When you say Thor is slamming on his anvil in a thunderstorm, on some level both literal and metaphorical that is happening. When you say Parvati is love and devotion, on some level she is. When you say Ba'al Hammon is the God of Carthage and weather and vegetation and rulership, he is those things, including the city itself. (Neall) [480]


I'm going to borrow some from one of my writers in this statement, but here goes: monotheism exists in Scion, and many, many people believe in one supreme omniscient, omnipotent God. Several schools of thought reconcile the mythic Gods with the God of Abraham, the Absolute, Mahavairocana, and the Supreme Being’s other names. The Gods blanch at these things and mutter embarrassing anecdotes, when they deign to acknowledge these things at all.

Scion is ultimately a game of mythology, though, and the setting must reflect that. Monotheism, as a belief in the World, is extremely useful as a culture jammer for intrapantheon rivalries, for denying another pantheon worship and Legend, as long-term transformational tools. Some of the organized religions in the World are more henotheistic than they are in our world. I consider the game to be sufficiently modular that if you want to exclude monotheism from the game, you can do so. Fundamentally, I'm uninterested in portraying anyone of sincerely-held faith in Scion as a dupe or an idiot. I'm also fundamentally uninterested in portraying the Gods as anything less than fully divine embodiments of the World - in other words, I want readers to see them as gods, not "sufficiently powerful beings", even as player characters ultimately interact with them as mythic heroes do: people first, and not entities of worship. And yes, if we do the Elohim and Alihah Pantheons, there will be a King of the Gods, a son of his (the God of Samaria and Judah), and a certain powerful Sky God who all glower at each other.

It's consumed an inordinate amount of bandwidth, but ultimately, no god worthy of the title proclaims themselves a god. It is self-evident. To quote Solas from Dragon Age, "No real god need prove himself. Anyone who tries is mad or lying." To quote Zelazny in Lord of Light, "Those who look upon gods then say, without even knowing their names, 'He is Fire. She is Dance. He is Destruction. She is Love.' So, to reply to your statement, they do not call themselves gods. Everyone else does, though, everyone who beholds them."

(I should reiterate at some point that in terms of belief I am actually Roman Catholic, from the specifically Irish-American transmission. I studied theology in college and seriously considered the priesthood at one point. My confirmation saint was St. Jude Thaddeus, and I pray a novena to ask his intercession every evening.)

Despite the considerable thought people have put into all these positions, most mortals don’t bother with it. Millions of Christians in our world go to church on Sundays, and burn offerings at home, or in cult temples on other days, and don’t see any contradictions. Same with the Orisha and the Loa. Scion's World is even stranger. Never underestimate a person's capacity to quell cognitive dissonance. Cultural tradition sends you to one to get married and buried, and to the other for money, favors, or revenge. You have purists, intellectuals and eccentrics who do it differently, but in the World, most people simply sense an order of things, and act accordingly.

I fully expect the Order of the Divine Glory and a Thronos Pantheon (under them arrayed the cherubim and the seraphim) to make an appearance once we get our community agreements up and running. I'm absolutely fine with that, and I really look forward to reading them. Scion and the World are big enough to support them all. (Neall) [481]


No answer to whether AI Scions are possible? Sadface. (Heliomance)

Look, let me save you some time.

My answer to something batshit like this is pretty much always gonna be "yes" or "sure".

There's some stuff I say no to, because it doesn't really happen in myths. "Can I, as a demigod or God, be Iron Man or a Reed Richards" is something I'll mostly say no to, if only because Iron Man Gods aren't actually too prevalent - most forge gods make shit for other Gods and outside of a few Sage Heroes redefining technology with a paradigm shift by inventing the wheel or the canoe or the whatever, you don't have 'em. Tony Stark the polymath inventor of a thousand myriad inventions for society and a few choice artifacts for himself and others is a Scion, and a good example of one. Iron Man, in the sense of refining his single greatest invention that's mostly for himself endlessly, is not. Doing something like inventing the Arc Reactor - clean energy on a citywide scale - is something a Hero would do, something that will transform society rapidly and have long aftereffects when they're gone. Because they do that paradigm shift and then they're off trying to find the Orichalcum Forge or whatever. In general, gods are more wise and clever than mortals, but they aren't smarter on the "invent psychohistory on a lark" level except in those rare heroes who get heroic off the paradigm shift. They're Zhuge Liang, not Iron Man.

But that's a tangent. The answer to "can a God breathe life into code" is both "it works for clay, so sure" and, "I, too, saw Weird Science as a young and hormonal teenager." (Neall) [482]


(The second chapter opener, by Lauren Roy. Enjoy!)

Sights you expect to see, on a perfect summer's twilight in the park:

Children playing.

Couples stealing kisses.

Dogs catching frisbees, or snuffling about tree trunks and fenceposts and other dogs.

Parents and caretakers chatting, checking their phones, digging snacks out of backpacks.

But a giant, pissed-off serpent winding its way around the now-abandoned playground? Not so much.

Eric had heard about it on the radio, as he was driving through town. The local newscaster had tried really hard to keep his cool, but the gibber kept threatening to break through his dispassionate reporter tone. The mic picked up the faint screams in the background, from parkgoers who were, inexplicably, still in the vicinity.

Probably staying to film it all, he'd thought, as he'd set the GPS to direct him to the park in question.

The police had cordoned off the playground, which was good. They had apparently forgotten the part where the serpent had dug its way out of the ground to start, which was bad. If it decided to tunnel out, the sawhorses and waving hands weren't going to keep it penned in. But at least they were keeping people out, for now, and the serpent was busy winding itself around swings and slides and issuing forth the occasional terrifying shriek.

Eric wasn't big on cashing in on what fame he'd earned, but this time, when one of the officers said, "Oh, you're that godling," and waved him and Giantsbane through, he didn't give him the old aw-shucks.

The serpent saw him coming. Gods, it was ugly — twenty feet long, the pale blue of a frostbite victim's fingernails, and scales that resembled the same. It had several sets of stubby legs, each ending in a set of wicked, clawed feet. It didn't so much have a face as it had a mouthful of fangs, and several of them dripped with venom.

Eric couldn't help but watch as a drop of drool hit the playground sand and hissed. Was this the day, then? He'd been hoping he could avoid the death the Sagas had set for his father, the serpent's poison that would finally fell the mighty Thor. Was there a Norn even now singing the end of his tale?

Then he heard the soft cry from the plastic spaceship-thing, a space for kids to crawl around in and, in this unfortunate kid's case, fall asleep. No time to wonder where the kid's parents were. The serpent had heard him, too, and slithered towards the sound.

"HEY. Over here, you asshole." Eric ran for the serpent, caught the tip of its tail in one hand, and yanked. The serpent spun, hissing, its maw wide open. It struck lightning-quick, but what was that kind of speed to the god of thunder's son? Eric dove sideways, keeping his grip. A dozen reptilian feet scrabbled for purchase in the gravel but got no traction.

Too bad he hadn't taken the seesaw into account. Eric's feet tangled in the supports, sending him sprawling. The serpent whipped its tail out of his hands and planted two pairs of front feet on his chest, pinning him to the ground.

That awful mouth opened, filling his vision with teeth and poison.

Giantsbane roared.

The top half of the serpent's head disappeared into a cloud of pale blue scales and black ichor. Eric rolled away as the body collapsed, careful to avoid what remained of the mouth and its deadly venom.

The kid climbed out of the spaceship and made a break for his dad, who'd finally shoved his way past the line of officers. He caught Eric's eye after he'd given the kid the first of many once-overs and mouthed thank you.

Eric nodded. He wanted to get out of this park, pick the gravel out of his skin and wash the serpent's clammy touch from his skin, but he couldn't help but feel a surge of pride in a job well done. This was why he'd never leave Midgard. It was his to protect. (Neall) [483]


(discussing how much people know of mythic reality)
For the majority of people, nine times out of ten they'll never come across a God or an ogre or a secret thing - and when they do, they won't notice. Your third girlfriend was a kitsune. Your first boyfriend was a satyr. Your six-foot-seven boss is actually a giant, and the runt of his litter. Just because irruptions of sacred into profane are sometimes prosaic doesn't make them less sacred - that's the trade-off for these characters having lives.

I'll also note: the idea that the divine isn't among us not being widely held by folks doesn't always hold up. The Norse of old believed their gods were as men in Asgard, simply far mightier. Various Voudoun sects or religions say they're ridden by spirits. I mean, I'm Christian, I think God came in the form of man to save us all. (Neall) [484]

Q: So does a "Mist" or some equivalent automatically obscure non-human features from mortal gaze then, even without intent? (glamourweaver)

A: No.

Satyrs tend to stay out of the public eye, though Origins-level satyrs ("Greek" satyrs) look as human as you or I. We have some GM advice on how to dial up or down the level of supernatural awareness in your game, but by default, it's more of a paper-thin anti-Masquerade - people don't notice the things they don't want to. (Neall) [485]


(on the question of animal Scions)
When did I say animals couldn't be or be made into Scions? You could do that. (Neall) [486]

The question is whether a scion made from an animal would still have animal shape or even animal intelligence or if it would be transformed into a human or antromorph. Playing anyone of those character types would be lot of fun and an interesting role play challenge. (Brian Orcus)

"Turned human," "shapeshifter," and "just a dog, but also a demigod" are all viable options.

"Animal-level intelligence," not really. (Robert Vance) [487]


Animal Path: Cú Sith
What? You've never seen a talking dog before?
It doesn't matter what they call you—Barghest, Church Grim, Gabriel's Ratchet, or simply Black Dog—you are a prize of the Tuatha Dé Danann. You are faithful, yes, but you are also a warning of their displeasure and an omen of death. The gifts they've given you separate you from the common hounds of the World, a thing you take pride in: dogs know and fear you, but have no more intelligence than children compared to you. It can be lonely to see so many and be like so few.
What you do have is your pack. They may be scattered, but they will come when you call for them, just as you will go to them when they need you. You'll cross the world to help them, and whether it's to fight, mate, or just to be with others of your kind, they will never turn on you.
Relationships: packmates, devotees of the Tuatha Dé Danann, local dogs
Asset Skills: Athletics, Survival
Innate Ability: You can speak as well as any human.
Knacks: Any one Hunter knack, Terrifying Howl (Custom knack), Call the Pack (Custom knack), Imperfect Disguise (white fur and red eyes; Antagonist drawback)
Terrifying Howl: Howling for more than one action has supernatural effects. On the second action you use to howl, the sound can be heard for a mile around you. On the third action, treat it as the Immobilize Antagonist knack.
Call the Pack: Once per session, you can summon the spirits of your packmates to you (if they are not physically present) and direct them against one enemy for a single attack. Treat them as a weapon with the Lethal, Loud, and Ranged tags, using Presence + Close Combat for the attack roll. (Neall) [488]


Theoi Signature Purview: Metamorphosis
The mythos of the Theoi is replete with tales of transformation, old forms changed into new entities. Gods take on the shapes of animals and humans, weather and geography, even abstract forms such as thoughts or emotions. They also transform others, turning foes into beasts, lovers into flowers, and heroes into constellations. This Purview governs both kinds of transformations, allowing Theoi Scions to emulate their parents’ mutability.
Innate Power: Your mutable nature lends itself to disguise. When you conceal your identity by any means, trivial characters automatically fail to see through your deception. When you roll to disguise yourself or present yourself as someone else, you ignore any Complications from changing height, size, race, sex, or even species.
Change Shape
Cost: Spend 1 Legend
Duration: One scene
Subject: Self
Action: Simple
You take on a form that is symbolically associated with one of your other Purviews. For example, Zeus drew on the associations of the Sky Purview to become all sorts of birds, a shower of gold, and a bull (which sounds a great deal like thunder, up close). This transformation is perfect in the details and undetectable through non-magical means, but doesn’t alter any of your Attributes, Skills, or other traits. However, depending on the form you assume, you can gain the following benefits:
One of: +1 Size, +1 Pace, or +1 Durability.
Any special forms of movement that shape possesses.
Any natural attacks that shape possesses.
Any miscellaneous abilities the Storyguide decides the shape should have, like a cloud being able to rain.
I Stab The Cloud
Theoi Scions can’t become invulnerable by taking on forms that are normally invalid targets for attacks—they still use their Defense and Stress boxes like normal. The resulting Injury Complications (p. XX) can be more abstract to suit the form—a cloud might be “Dissipated”—but revert to more mundane injuries upon returning to human form. If you want to emphasize the difficulty of attacking what you’ve turned into, represent that with increased Durability. (Neall) [489]

I'm personally holding out hope that 2nd Edition Theoi get a power similar to Ixion's, in which they're able to create monsters. Hell, their mythology is chalk full of them having done just that! (Nyrufa)

That's a Demigod-level Boon of their Purview. (Neall) [490]

Q: I wonder if Tricksters with large form libraries (like Sun Wukong and Loki) will have a specific Shapeshifting purview (that isn't Metamorphoses of course)? (prototype00)

A: They have specific Immortal Trickster Knacks that allow them to augment disguises and make them real. (Neall) [491]


Q: How exactly do the PSPs (and really the pantheonic politics in general) of scions of gods in multiple pantheons work? also does it differ weather it's two mantles of the same god vs the same god same mantle? (SdeSpencer)

A: Heroes can only use one PSP, full stop. You choose which mantle of the God is the character's parent. (Neall)


Q: Sorry, I'm just adding to the list of questions, but how does having one of Beasts, Artistry, or Passion work when you want more than one but not all of them? like say you want Artistry (Storytelling and Playwriting) or Beast (Bunnies, Salmon, and Spiders)? how do the boons and previews work for that? (SdeSpencer)

A: Artistry and Beast allow you to be a polymath artist or master of all animals, but picking a specific art or animal allows you to create a motif off that animal, through which you can channel other Purviews. [...] (Neall) [492]

Q: Uh, I'm sorry but i felt you missed my question. i asked for how the inbetween works. how does having more than 1 but not All of them affect it? how does THAT work? Again, sorry. (SdeSpencer)

A: You get a motif for each one. For example, if you wanted to use the Beast (Birds) Purview to replicate Blinding Glory (a Sun Boon), you'd describe it as a cloud of birds blinding your opponent by obscuring all else from view. (Neall) [493]


Q: Besides Pantheons are their going to be any kind of powerful international organizations Scions can join like The Orders, The Covenants, Conspiracies in Chronicles of Darkness? (Weirdboyz)

A: A few, yes. More to come in other supplements. (Neall) [494]


Q: So, is a calling related crisis something like a crisis of faith where the Scion questions their calling and possibly comes ot all the stronger for it (For an example of what I mean see every superhero at least once)? (vonpenguin)

A: Yes. (Neall)

Q: What's the difference between the Prophet and Sage Callings/Knacks? (Tiresias)

A: Sage Knacks don't have to do with Fate, but knowledge and knowing the World. (Neall) [495]


Q: Will artistry(cooking) be a valid purview? (trebius)

A: How else would Andhrímnir do his thang? (Robert Vance) [496]


Q: [..] Would it be possible for a Mortal to be Fatebound by multiple Scions? Like, could a Boon Companion of one Scion meet up with the Band, interact, and get impressed by the party Sage and want to learn from them, becoming Fatebound to the Apprentice role? (Kyman201)

A: (Neall)

Multiple Fatebindings

Most of the time, an SGC can only be Fatebound to one character, and only as one archetype at a time. If you’ve got a large group or your players are triggering Fatebindings often, though, that can lead to supporting cast bloat. In that case, it’s okay for one character’s Paramour to be another’s Rival, for example. Be mindful of creating schisms within the group, and avoid it unless party infighting is your desired goal.

Also, any Resolution of a Fatebinding Condition that removes the character from play must have the consent of all players whose characters are Fatebound to that character. Even if the other PCs are mortal, by virtue of being the protagonists they’re immune to being Fatebound to other PCs. Effectively, they’re already Fatebound to themselves.

Fatebinding other PCs

Don’t. Fatebinding is a tool to tie Storyguide characters into a Scion’s story, not a tool to force potentially-unwanted relationships on other players. While Storyguide characters exist to serve the story, PCs are solely under the control of their own players. Even though Fatebinding isn’t mind control and any character can resist Fate’s path, it’s still potentially coercive to dictate another PC’s relationship to your own. [497]

Official blog posts

Announcements

Neall Raemonn Price Announced as New Scion Developer

System

Codename: Sardonyx - First Teaser (history, goals, core mechanic, Consolation, and Momentum)

Codename: Sardonyx - Second Teaser (Attributes and Abilities)

Codename: Sardonyx - Schemas and Scales

Callings

Setting

Mortals, Worship, and Faith

The World

Pantheons

General

Nine Years and a Week (2e intro, themes, and alpha slice)

The Bindings of Fate

Kickstarter

Scion 2e Origins & Hero Kickstarter (22nd September 2016 - 22nd October 2016)

Official releases

(These are up on DriveThruRPG, and require an account with them to download.)

Second Edition Poster

Storypath System Preview (free)

Second Edition Gen Con 2016 Poster