Newly Awakened Traditions Disciples and their peers have 7 points to devote to Merits. They can chose the normal merits in the World of Darkness rules-book, and can also chose the magical merits as detailed in Mage: The Awakening, with the following modifications.. Secret Signs - Ascension Nova mages do not gain High Speech, as Atlantis does not exist in this setting as it does in Mage: The Awakening.
Instead, each Tradition has it's own secret languages and codes that embody that Tradition's view of reality and encode their rotes and Sphere lore. These secret codes and lores can only be fully understood by those initiated into a particular Tradition's Paradigm. Unlike High Speech, these secret languages and codes can be learned by people outside of a particular political organization if their magic styles match with the Tradition who's lore their exploiting - this must not only include an identical world view, but also an identical set of Rote Specialties so as to understand that Tradition's inner secrets.
In game, these are known as things like High Enochian (Order of Hermes), Kaja script and hand signals (Akashic Brotherhood), and various other secret means to communicate inner magickal secrets. Like Atlantean High Speech, overt use of Secret Signs grants the same advantages that High Speech does, including additional dice on Magick rolls. While use of Secret Signs does not necessarily make a spell Vulgar, it does make a spell fairly obvious. Members of the Nine Traditions, as well as well educated Unionists, can recognize the secret signs of various Traditions if they take an appropriate Skill specialty in Occult.
The Technocracy also has Secret Signs, recognizable as various forms of advanced hyperscience used in calculations for effects, usually worked into equations to give a procedure more paradigmatic stability. Most crafts have their own versions of Secret Signs.
Other Merits - These various merits function normally for Mages of the Nine Traditions and the Technocratic Union, as per Mage: The Awakening - Artifact, Destiny, Dream, Enhanced Item (see list of sample Wonders), Familiar, Imbued Item (see list of sample Wonders), Occultation
* a note of Occultation* this works the same as Arcane. The higher the dots the less your known and more screwed over you can be. You rich but get occultation? Your going to not be rich anymore as the banks lose your information and all. Keep that in mind *
Hallow is renamed to Node, and follows it's own set of special rules detailed in the New Backgrounds section. That said -node is NOT allowed at character creation-
Library functions exactly the same as in Mage the Awakening, except that each dot of the Library Merit can alternately be assigned to a particular Arcanum. Instead of having to buy or trade for other Mages' rotes, the character with the Library can make roll a research task with a difficulty equal to twice the number of dots of the rote. Success means that the character has found a copy of the rote designed for her own Tradition or Convention. A character can have a library where some dots represent esoteric fields of study and others represent knowledge of the rotes in a particular Arcansum.
Chantry - A new background, Chantries are at once strongholds located on the edge of Astral Space between the Gaia Sphere and the deeper Tellurian, as well as a political organization. Rank in Chantry represents the Mage's responsibilities as well as access to it's resources. Note that this is separate from Status (Chantry) - you can have access to a Chantry's resources but not much say in it as a political organization. *note* You do -not- start with Chantry status or Chantry. You earn your place and right to be there.
Status - Status for Tradition Mages is broken down into Status (Cabal), Status (Chantry) and Status (Tradition).
Acolyte - The Tradition term for Sleepwalker Retainer. These play a somewhat different role that Sleepwalkers do with the Pentacle orders. Groups of Acolytes can enhance the success of ritual magick mitigate the chances of creating Paradox.
Avatar- Each dot in the Avatar merit allows a Mage to regenerate 1 point of Mana every 12 hours and each dot also adds to rolls to gain Mana from oblations. The Avatar also acts as a Mentor equal to 1/2, rounded up, of it's rating, but only for mystical or esoteric subjects. Quintessence gained from the Avatar background may only be used for personal uses (ie, it can not be used in the creation of Artifacts or Tass) and it can not be taken from the Mage by any means.
Sanctum - This Merit is identical to the Merit in Mage: The Awakening (pp. 86-87), except that it is also a location where all of the owner's magic is coincidental, and where the owner's personal paradigm holds sway. The choice of the details of this paradigm is up to the owner and is free, but different choices have different advantages and disadvantages. If magic is only coincidental for members of the owner's Tradition, then allies and members of the same chantry who belong to different traditions won't be able to use the Sanctum. However, magic used by the Technocracy also won't automatically be coincidental. A Sanctum can be designed with an open paradigm, so that magic used by any Tradition is coincidental, but this also means that the Technocracy's magic will also be coincidental. If desired, multiple characters can share the cost of the Sanctum.
This merit MUST be done in play:
To build or expand a Sanctum during play, doing so requires both constructing or acquiring the location and then adjusting it to their paradigm. Doing this requires that a character spend one dot of Willpower for every dot of the Sanctum's size. Several characters can contribute this Willpower. However, characters do not need to spend any Willpower dots for a Sanctum purchased at the beginning of the campaign. Characters are assumed to have already paid the necessary Willpower dots.
Extraordinary Devices These are devices are ones that are at the very edge of the current paradigm and actually exceed it in a few minor ways. While not actually magical, these devices are advanced enough that Sleepers without the appropriate technical knowledge may believe that they are. Only people with Awakened Avatars can design Extraordinary Devices, and the initial prototype for such a device must normally be built by a mage. Once this device has been successfully demonstrated to highly trained Sleepers, these Sleepers can use plans and similar technical data to duplicate such devices.
While they can be highly advanced, Extraordinary Devices are much more limited in both power and versatility than actual talismans and artifacts. Unfortunately, Extraordinary Devices can also generate Paradox. In spite of their limits, Extraordinary Device do have a number of important advantages. They can be produced in large quantities, they do not require the use of Prime magics or Tass and they can be used by trained Sleepers. Ultra-miniaturized devices and many forms of cyberware and nanotechnology are typical examples of modern Extraordinary Devices. Often, members of the Technocracy attempt to bring Extraordinary Devices into the modern paradigm by showcasing them in techno-thriller novels, movies and television shows.
Imbued Items: One problem with the changeover from oWoD to nWoD rules is that Wonders (now called Imbued Items) are far more expensive. A set of Ether Goggles is now a 3 dot Merit, which seems too high. One option to help keep more of the feel of Mage: The Ascension is to remove the additional one dot cost for items whose powers are persistent. Imbued items with a Duration of Prolonged and which only affect the user or the object or device they are attached to are automatically persistent. No other imbued items can be persistent. As a result, a pair of ether googles, which automatically allow the wearer to see into Twilight (Spirit •) would be a 2 dot Merit.
For properly rubber stamped Merits that are in play.
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