Powers

The word “Powers” refers to the various sources of supernatural effects the Exalt can have upon the world, including (but not limited to): Charms, Evocations, Spells, and Martial Arts Techniques.

System Presentation

Powers are presented in a manner similar to the following:

Cost: 2m
Type: Primary
Mins: Awareness 3
(Prerequisite)

Cost

Designates what character resources it takes to use the Power. A Power of no cost (such as Permanent effects) will be designated with “–”.

  • m—Motes of Essence, which can be a chosen combination of Personal or Peripheral

    • Some Powers will specifically designate (personal) or (peripheral) in their cost.
  • i—If used in a Combat Scene, requires Impulse. If used in an Encounter Scene, requires Influence.

  • sm—Sorcerous Motes, which are described in more detail in the Sorcery.

Type

The Power’s Type designates how the power may be activated, and then how long it is active for in the format:

Type: (Activation Type); (Duration)

So, a Power that activates Reflexively and is then active for the remainder of the scene would be written as:

Type: Reflexive; Scene

If there is no duration written, the power is considered Instant, and immediately dissipates after activation.

Terminating Active Powers

An Exalt may willfully terminate a Power early, should they desire. However, they must then pay the activation cost again if they want to reactivate the power.

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Activation Type

  • Simple. Consumes an Action Slot. Only one Action may be taken per turn.

  • Free Action. Does not consume an Action Slot, but must still be activated on the character’s Turn. (i.e. not Reflexively.)

  • Supplemental. Enhances a Primary or Secondary Action. There is no limit to the number of supplemental Powers that may be combined together.

  • Reflexive. Conditional powers that may be used outside of normal turn order. So long as the condition is met, the Reflexive Power may always be used.

  • Permanent. Once purchased, this power is always active.

Prerequisite

Occasionally, some Powers will require the purchase of another Power first. If this exists, the prerequisite charm will be listed here.

Timing Conflicts

If there is ever a timing conflict, such as with two Reflexive Charms going off at once, the resolution goes according to the defender’s choice.

If that is still unclear, there should be a contested roll using the relevant Finesse Attribute: Dexterity, Insight, or Cunning.

Minimum Requirements

When buying a Power, there are certain Minimums that must first be met—such as the dot Rating in a specific Ability.

Glossary of Terms

There are specific words and phrases that charms commonly use as a shorthand for mechanical actions—so that the power description isn’t constantly cluttered with the same mechanical saying.

  • On Hit Any Action, including Maneuvers and the Accuracy Roll, which exceeds a target’s DV. Unless otherwise stated, this hit must be on an action from the character, using the Ability that the Power is under.

    • Sometimes the Power will explicitly target Evasion or Soak.
  • Feats of Strength Rolls, typically using Strength and Physique, with the intent of expressing physical prowess—hefting boulders, breaking walls, carrying tons, etc

Charms

Charms are the natural expression of a character’s essence, a specific and trained way for their internal power to be expressed upon the world.

These powers are inherently personal, and each expression will vary from individual to individual: those that are listed are simply generalizations and categorization for easy shorthand.

Typically, a character does not know they are using a specific charm: it is simply an instinctual channeling of essence to produce the desired effect.

Greater Charms

Greater Charms are powers more powerful, and far more complicated to learn and perfect than a normal Charm.

A character must first be at Essence 3 to learn a Greater Charm, and it will cost double the amount of XP to learn.

Making New Powers

[[NOTE: This section is old and slated for rewrite.]]

Use Sparingly: Dice Tricks (TN Shifting, Double X’s)

“Dice Tricks” are effects that rely on the face values of dice, and often contain wording such as “Whenever a 1 is rolled…” These types of mechanics should be considered very carefully, and used extremely sparingly.

When using a Dice Pool system, such as Exalted does with its (Att+Abi)x d10’s, all players around the table will start to rely on memorization of dice faces as symbols, rather than individually interpreting the numbers.

In essence, people will start to quickly stop seeing the numbers:

{ 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 }

Instead, minds will short circuit this: seeing it as the much more manageable:

{ 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 1, 1, 1, 2 }

If you create a power that has “Dice tricks” built into it, such as doubling any number with an 8 or higher, you mess with this short-circuit memorization. This will slow down play considerably as players will suddenly have to focus on the dice, reinterpret the dice as actual numbers again, and then potentially undo their memorization.

Only use a Dice Trick if it is necessary. A sparing number of these effects here and there—perhaps restricted by a conditional—is fine. But if too many of them appear, it will slow down play considerably!

Judging Costs

  • Charms should have mins from 1-3 (maybe 4)

  • Greater Charms should have Mins from 3-4 (maybe 5)

  • Effects in the Maneuver Stunts table should be 2m at base. If you improve them, no more than 5m.

  • Targeting Evasion/Soak is 3m, 1i. Targeting a non-standard defense is 4m, 2i.