Religion Rules Update 2016

So the first part of the Religion Update is now live — announcements/patch-notes-the-one-with-religion-t1932.html

What do folks think? Does this make you more likely to get involved with the religion side of the game. If you’re a priest do you think you’ll get more use out of your skills or do things differently now?

The rest of the religion rules update will be live later in the day, check back for more updates as we get them :slight_smile:.

The nerf to exorcism seems a bit harsh to me. I really appreciate other skills being able to counter their own auras, but I feel like that, in itself, would have been enough of a nerf to exorcism (as it would have to compete with other options). Perhaps if I took the field I might feel differently, as I suspect that that’s where exorcism sees most of its use.

Still, I’m looking forward to playing with my new improved Anointing, and might even take Hallow, with its new one-year duration; as that would then cover all the things I’ve used Exorcism for previously.

Waiting with baited breath on what changes may be coming to the religious items.

EDIT: Oh, and anointing oil is a great timesaver. Not sure how many I’ll carry with me, as Liao has been in high demand, but having one or two will save boatloads of time when it comes up.

Most other skills could already counter their own auras: you could anoint to displace an anointing, and so on.

I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times that got done.

Good point, I realised that after I posted. Suppose with exorcism being so versatile people just defaulted to it no matter what.

It’s worth noting that I don’t think there has been a battlefield exorcism since the start of year three (I could be wrong, but I think the last exorcisable battlefield objective was the Druj wraiths).

There have been plenty of things on the field that can be exorcised, even before these rules changes, and I expect that trend to continue.

I really like to be able to hallow many more things, it tempts me to pick up the skill.

Dreams are cool. I appreciate that every single priest can give them now, with them being a thing of Dedication, not of Anointing.

I would be a priori neutral about the change to sects. As a rules change however, I see far too little point in it. A sect is a group of like-minded individuals, which to me more often than not meant also a dedication to the same virtue. And for me, magical artefacts won’t fix that. For me, a sect remains a mechanical representation for group membership with little else, I expect.

In practical terms, I guess the advantage of anointing oil is that it removes the danger of performing an anointing with no ref at hand, and then something crazy happens and a liao does not end up at god, or there is a misunderstanding what the anointing does because there is a card stating it. Which is nice.

The biggest thing I get from this is a change in what the Virtues are supposed to mean, whether that’s intended or not. Spoilers below, in case it’s possible to have a discussion like that in the field. And that just when I had had an interesting look at the virtues and thought about some questions that I wanted to poke next event, most of which do apply far less now.

[size=10]Ambition anointings seem to be a bit less ruthless, but with more Hallowings, all the “use others as pawns” is in there. Prioritizing between different ambitions seems to have vanished entirely. On one hand, this is good for my philosophical musings, because it makes Ambition even more Kategorisch (cf. a famous imperative), but on the other hand the hallowings are much more specific, so it’s going to be far less Kategorisch in practice.

Courage seems to have gained quite a bit of tenets beyond “act NOW! Ignore consequences and speak the truth”, although it’s nice to see there’s still quite a few “regardless of consequences” in the hallowings. But to me, Courage was sticking out before as a virtue that said “fuck consequences!” when every other virtue had a “mind consequences!” in its core.

Loyalty seems to not have changed much, but Silverlark’s Tears is interesting.

Prosperity seems to have gained much more focus on the “Share and enjoy the fruits”, where before I perceived a strong focus on the “share and do labour”.

Pride seems to now be nearly exclusively self-centered, there are two hallowings left exalting others, and one is about your companions specifically, and the other is restricted to showing respect. Before, I read a lot more “see the Good in other people” in the Pride auras.

Vigilance seems to be similar, but has entirely lost the aspect of “reflecting about your own shortcomings”. That was a bit of Lived Vigilance that I found quite important.

Wisdom has retained a strong focus on action (maybe even more than before), and the tenet of “Wisdom is very much about lerning”, which I saw in there before, is very much gone – no more “blank slate on topic X”, only an anointing of “test your knowledge” and a hallowing of “listen to others” left.[/size]

Plenty of stuff in skirmishes.
I like the new rules.
Warrior priest? Yes I exorcise

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Given the changes to Exorcism, how do priests remove magical curses (annointing?) or is this no longer a thing?

Same as before, I believe, with a bigger Anointing.

profounddecisions.co.uk/empi … ingle_Aura

Hang on, magical curses? Could the old Exorcise remove magical effects? I thought it could only remove auras and soul-based stuff.

Exorcism and curses

Exorcism can only remove curses that say “exorcism will remove this.” This applies to none of the existing magical curses. It is predominantly intended for removing the effects of spirits and similar stuff.

That is not to say that it cannot remove a magical curse … but given that one of our core game designs is “No general Remove Curse/Dispel Magic spell” it will almost certainly only work on magical curses that involve possessions by malignant spirits.

Anointing of equal ot greater strength - either to replace the one thats already there or to replace it with nothing (removing it)

If you mean things on Spiritual Wound / Spiritual Traumatic Wound cards, I think those always said what skills you needed to cure them inside the card.

So still the same as before if we get cards that were printed before the changes (and they’ve not all been exorcism, yay), but with maybe a wider variety of things for cards printed after?

If you now wish to give your mates spiritual strength to overcome the mental influence of the Realms, then Anointing is now your toolbox. And it doesn’t dispel these effects, it lets you fight them off by following the Anointing effect, which is feeding your soul with a double-strength dose of Virtue to the face.

Exorcism now explicitly does not work to remove the effects of yer average common or garden magic mind-affecting effects, whereas previously it wasn’t clear whether or not it worked and different things might have happened at different times. As Raff says, there might be curses that needed Exorcism to shift but they’d be Special and Clearly Signposted.

Meanwhile Hallow is your go-to to give RP effects to objects to put your own particular stamp on them - if I were an artisan I’d be seriously considering getting someone to hallow the things I made as a standard operating procedure, as it’s not like liao is particularly expensive. Note that it lets you name your creations!

I am really looking forward to playing with the new framework for spiritual effects, though I’m starting small so as not to scare the horses so to speak.

I don’t think that this will adversely affect spiritual traumatic wound related roleplay going forward.

Anointing can be used to simply remove a pesonal aura. In fact, I believe this is the way Way priests can handle malign effects solo. Of course, I imagine most dedicated priests will choose to put a new aura on, because that’s far more fun.
Consecration can remove location auras in a similar way.

So here is my unofficial and incomplete summary of changes (cross posted from FB)

I strongly recommend if you have priest skills that you REREAD and PRINT OUT or otherwise COPY your new AURA DESCRIPTIONS! As I am fairly certain every aura description. Importantly Dedicate now lets you create dreams.
profounddecisions.co.uk/empi … Ceremonies

Now, I will attempt to summerise some of the changes but I won’t get them all, and there is the awkward fact that previously there were 3 pages that the rules for religious skills… which had slightly different rules on it.

I very much encourage a full rereading of the religious skill and aura rules.

AURAS in general
There are three types of aura: Personal, Item and Location auras.
A target can only be under one aura at a time
A new aura will replace any existing aura that is of the same strength or lower
A target can only be the recipient of a single aura at a time. They may be affected by auras of different types at the same time - for example a character under a personal aura who enters a consecrated area with a location aura - but there can only be one personal aura on a character at once - and so on.

The roleplaying effects of an aura are strongest in the first few minutes after it takes effect
Players should be influenced by the effects at key dramatic moments, rather than stress about roleplaying them throughout the event

DEDICATION
YOU NOW GET DREAM POWERS! WHOOO!
I am perhaps a little too excited about this, but I am very pleased they made the final cut. Essentially the old dream anointings have been moved here, and reworded.
If you are not dedicated to any Virtue then you can choose ANY of the seven Imperial Virtues to give a related dream.
Can no longer be removed by Exorcism, requires Dedication to remove dedication.

ANOINTING
Are a type of personal aura.
ALL anointings have been reworded.
ALL anointings can be used as a source of spiritual strength to overcome a malign roleplaying effect.

There will (hopefully) be aura cards for Anointing that priests can give out, so you don’t need a ref.
The effect lasts until the start of the next Profound Decisions Empire event rather than “a scene”

HALLOW
Hallows (and other item auras) now are represented with a ribbon which specifies the roleplay effect on it.
All Hallows have been reworded to kinda give a immediate action
Hallow doesn’t all you to overcome nasty auras anymore.
But allows you to create a personalised ribbons! With their own names!
Hallow can now be cast on non magical items, rather than just bonded artisan items. You can finally hallow that shoe and that table you have always wanted to.
Hallows last a lot longer:
“A hallow on a bonded magic item lasts as long as the item remains enchanted; a hallow on a mundane item lasts for a year (until the start of the Profound Decisions Empire event four events from now).”

CONSECRATION
Consecrate auras are in the category of “location auras” like a few “chamber” magic rituals.
Consecration auras have been reworded.
Can no longer be removed by Excorcism, Consecration needs to be removed by Consecrate or replaced by another location aura.
Consecration can now also remove other location auras like the “chamber of…” ritual magic.

**EXORCISM **
Exorcism is no longer the fix-all of roleplay effect. It no longer removes dedications, anointings, hallows, consecrations, excommunications or testimonies.
Is mostly focused on ghostbusting rather than fighting auras you don’t like.

If you feel you’ve been a bit nerfed by this:

EXCOMMUNICATION

  • Requires a ref. Target does not need to be willing
    Can no longer be removed by Exorcism, requires Excommunication to uh recommunicate.
    Whilst excommunicated you do not dream (or do not remember your dreams)… I think this is super important myself.

TESTIMONY
No longer removed by exorcism. Removed by testimony.
Can have multiple testimonies BUT if a testimony ceremony is used to remove a testimony then it removes all testimonies with that strength or less - it is not possible to pick and choose.
Testimony does not literally write words on the aura, or soul, of the target. Rather it seems to create a symbol, or an aura, that is interpreted by the priest using insight. A testimony placed by a Sumaah priest is comprehensible to an Imperial priest and vice versa.
Probably a bit slow and very expensive to use as a translation method…

INSIGHT
Now got two modes: Quick Insight and Thorough Insight (aka refless and EnRefed)
Quick Insight is done without a ref and allows you to know the race of the target and to observe any aura cards and spiritual traumatic wounds (and may read the spiritual traumatic wound cards).
Cannot be done on objects.
Thorough Insight
Requires a ref, can be done at range (upto 20’) and doesn’t require the target’s consent (although they will be aware they have been insighted)
Gives more detailed information including dedication, excommunicate, testimonies
Can also be done on objects.

SECTS! (hur hur)
Sects now allow you to co-operate on making a strongly effect without having to share the same Virtue.
However, you can either be assisted by your sect OR other priests of your Virtue & The Way BUT NOT BOTH.#

Liao
Liao bottles are being replaced by liao cards.
You can hand in liao bottles for liao cards.
They’re cool physreps but liao cards are useful for self-refing as you can visibly tear them up, making it clear to everyone that you have consumed it.
Liao bottles are still ok to be used for religion skills that require
After Event 1 2017 liao bottles will not be valid or hand in able.
This does however leave an awkward period of time where PD can’t just give out liao bottles as physreps to go with your cards because… well you can still hand them in for cards.

VERY IMPORTANTLY:
Any confusions, questions or glitches you spot please email: empire.rules@profounddecisions.co.uk
If you’re confused, then chances are so are other people.
“As is usual when PD makes improvements to the Empire rules system, if any player feels that there is a skill that has been materially affected by the new rules that they would not normally have taken, then they can ask PD to remove that skill from their character by emailing admin@profounddecisions.co.uk

Also. I kinda forget this one but… ORCS!

Occasionally I hear words to the effect that “priest skills don’t work on orcs”… which is awkward because actually most do.
The rules for orcs and religion skills haven’t actually changed… but worth repeating.
(See: profounddecisions.co.uk/empi … /Orc#Rules)

Orcs can be affected by auras, including those created through anointing, hallow, and consecration.
Orcs can be subject to an exorcism.
Orcs can have their spirits marked through testimony
The aura of an orc can be perceived by insight.

Orcs cannot use liao: An orc that consumes liao feels dizzy and unwell, and often throws up shortly afterwards.
Orcs cannot learn or use any religious skills, nor receive a vision from true liao.
Orcs cannot be affected by Dedication (which means an orc priest cannot join a virtue assembly other than the Assembly of the Way). This includes Dedication dreams.
Orcs are not affected by Excommunication.

(note that “exorcism” contains the word “orc” Coincidence… probably… yes.)

Hey, Tom.

Love you.

gains OC goal to get a shiny new Dedicate dream