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Animalism Revised

by: Marie A Legacy Article from Sanguinus Curae

In response to the divergent nature of the powers of Animalism - controlling beasts and controlling the Beast - we have developed a new approach to the discipline. There are multiple paths Animalism can take above the first two levels. The practitioner decides which path he wishes to take when he gains level three and must stick with that decision. Other paths can be learned at out of clan costs, though the first two levels do not have to be re-learned. The first path chosen must always be higher than any other path.


Animalism: Path of Beasts

Feral Whispers
(as standard)

Beckoning
(as standard)

Fortifying the Feral Spirit
The person using this ability is able to infuse an animal with a part of their spirit, elevating the animal above the level of mere beast and making it a more worthy companion, or perhaps simply a better tool.
This power temporarily raises one of the animals Social or Mental stats to the level of its master. Only one stat is affected and the ST should be strict in enforcing limited benefits. In general, intelligence enhances the ability to accept and understand commands. Charisma enhances the animal's ability to give the master information and communicate in general. Manipulation enhances its ability to lie to other masters (sneaking into the Nosferatu warrens). Wits enhances its decision making in combat and other stressful situations. Perception enhances its ability to perceive complex events occurring around it. A rat with a supernaturally high intelligence would be able to accept complex instructions such as following a specific person, but they would not be able to perceive what type of gun the person was holding or communicate where the person went in anything more than general terms ("that way" as opposed to "eight blocks north and one east"). A given animal can only be affected by one use of this power at a time.
Roll [stat affected] + Animal Ken, difficulty six. Successes can be used to increase the stat up to a maximum of the character's stat and to increase the duration. One success buys one point of increase or one hour of effect. Animals that are blood bound to the master can be affected for much longer periods of time. A willpower point is spent and the animal is affected for one week per success spent on duration. Each willpower point spent in this way counts as one point of 'experience' toward raising that particular stat in that affected animal, so that repeated use of this power on an animal over time can create permanently powerful ghouls. This power can be terminated at any time at the master's discretion.

Summon the Spirit
(as standard)

Master of the Pack
At this point the character's skill with animals has advanced to the point where they almost become extensions of his will. Most notably the character can speak to multiple animals at once, as long as they are of the same species. Unlike the earlier powers this communication is audible and does not require eye contact. Animals also look to the character with respect and are much more willing to do the character's bidding.
The character can speak to all the animals of one species audibly with no roll. All animals in earshot hear this, even those who might be working for other masters. Also the character is assumed to permanently be affected by an power similar to level one Presence, affecting only animals. All animals around the character (within line of sight and roughly 50 feet) will tend to follow the characters commands to the best of their ability. No roll is required. This only works in the characters presence. Asking animals to do things away from the character still requires a roll as per level one Animalism. An animal can resist this power if already under the sway of another character with Animalism or if blood bound to another character. The animal resists with their Wits against a difficulty of the character's Willpower.

Animalism: Path of the Beast

Feral Whispers
(as standard)

Beckoning
(as standard)

Quell the Beast
(as standard)

Knowing the Beast
Before the student of Animalism can control the Beast they must understand it. This power allows the character to comprehend the nature of someone's beast. Specifically, this means learning what can calm their Beast and what causes anger or fear in their Beast. Additionally, when the Beast is unleashed in another the character can see what caused the unleashing.
Roll Perception plus Survival, difficulty of the target's Manipulation plus Subterfuge. (The difficulty is reduced by two if the target is currently affected by Rotschreck or Frenzy.) A small number of successes gives information about what is pulling the subject's Beast in each of three directions in the moment. The character learns what is currently calming the Beast, what is currently angering the Beast (either a cause of anger or of hunger) and what is currently frightening the Beast. A greater number of successes gives information about what tends to influence the Beast in general. Such observation requires ten seconds or so. So a Gangrel watching a Brujah in a nightclub might see that the Brujah is excited by the smell of blood around him, made nervous by the lit cigarettes of those near him and calmed by the fact that he has recently fed. More successes might tell the Gangrel that the Brujah is especially set off by racial slurs, is frightened by his sire, and is comforted by listening to classical music.

Drawing Out the Beast
(as standard)

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