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Nephilim retrospective


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I just finished a retrospective review of (most of) the Nephilim line here. Looking back to it I'm struck by how neat a little game it actually was, provided you were willing to really commit to its conceits, and how substantial and useful the improvements in the supplement line were. I genuinely think a second edition that incorporated some of the ideas from the supplements into the core and gave a much clearer steer on "What do you do with this game?" could have a decent shot, though I suspect the low sales of the original might put off Chaosium from repeating the experiment, which is a little unfortunate. Either way, it certainly doesn't deserve the "poor cousin" status it often has. (Poor thing isn't even represented in the banner up there!).

Aside from here, is there a good place to go to catch up on the Nephilim fan community? *Is* there a fan community, or did people just walk away from it?

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I always liked Nephilim but it had some major issues. Mainly the absence of a "What the game is suposed to be about". List of other big problems IMO:

- Not enough explanation of the Major Arcana and how it should influence the PCs.
- No explanation of how to connect the nature of an elemental Nephilim with the chosen Major Arcana. Some combinations were incongruent or directly unplayable
- No explanation about the Nephilim world... do they connect with each other regularily? Does anyone knows when a Nephilim awakens? Is there a catalog of suspended and awake Nephilims? How about the simulacra life?
- Can you have a Nephilim "party"? how do they meet? should they be all from the same Arcana? if not how do they interact with each other?
- Nephilim advancement is pretty much divorced from what it is supposedly enlightning.
- Very few spells, and very limited in aplication.

Understanding how the game is supposed to be run is a path to enlightment in itself!!

I feel the game was more complicated than it should.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 07/11/2017 at 5:10 PM, Warthur said:

I wonder if Chaosium, if they don't want the risk/expense themselves, could see their way to letting the current publishers try their hand at an English release of that new French version? It looks absolutely gorgeous.

I don't think Chaosium has any right on this new edition of Nephilim, even in english.

First and second french edition were under licence by Chaosium, because they used a modified BRP, but they were originally french games.

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17 hours ago, Mugen said:

I don't think Chaosium has any right on this new edition of Nephilim, even in english.

First and second french edition were under licence by Chaosium, because they used a modified BRP, but they were originally french games.

Have they since moved away from the BRP rules?  Alas.  What do they use these days?

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1 hour ago, g33k said:

Have they since moved away from the BRP rules?  Alas.  What do they use these days?

According to the kickstarter site, 5th edition is going to use a modified BRP, just like 1st and 2nd did.

3rd edition used words instead of numbers to describe one's attributes and skills. Instead of having STR 16, you were "very strong", for instance. It used a simplified resistance table, based on a d20, to resolve tasks.

4th edition was d100, roll-under, but not BRP. Chances of success were determined by multiplying an attribute by a number, depending on difficulty (1 for very difficult, 5 for easy). There was no skill level at all : being trained in a skill added 1 to the difficulty modifier. It was also not very successful, as far as I know.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 06/12/2017 at 2:49 AM, Mugen said:

According to the kickstarter site, 5th edition is going to use a modified BRP, just like 1st and 2nd did.

3rd edition used words instead of numbers to describe one's attributes and skills. Instead of having STR 16, you were "very strong", for instance. It used a simplified resistance table, based on a d20, to resolve tasks.

4th edition was d100, roll-under, but not BRP. Chances of success were determined by multiplying an attribute by a number, depending on difficulty (1 for very difficult, 5 for easy). There was no skill level at all : being trained in a skill added 1 to the difficulty modifier. It was also not very successful, as far as I know.

For this one we're keeping the d100 spirit but with rules tailored to the Nephilim world. Occult investigations, a revised magic paths system, no individual skills but past lives "packages" used to solve problems. Also we're testing a "roundless" combat system based on post-it notes. All this is still in early "beta" state.
And seeing how the world has changed in the last few years, we have a system to deal with the problem of surveillance and security that require the Nephilim to either find places away from prying eyes to act or deal with Secret Societies' plots to find and expose them.
 

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  • 1 year later...
On 7/10/2019 at 2:12 AM, Calvin said:

One of my friends is trying to get into the main book at the moment. We are hitting similar points, a lot of high concepts and not a lot of "so what are we going to do now?" 

I ran into the same problem, until I picked up the rest of the books. We found the GM's book to give a lot of insight (I remember reading that half of it was supposed to be in the main book, but cut due to size issues).

 

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