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What is the effect of a non-NPC vassal invoking an aspect?

PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:01 am
by LordWyrmsBane
I get how you would tag or compel your Vassals (or how others would do so). But, as they have no Style (with the possible exception of your Maid/Valet, who are carrying your Style for you), how would a Vassal invoke an aspect? Would the character spend the Style from their pool to invoke their Vassal's aspects? Or does someone (which could be the character) have to tag or compel the Vassals to give them the Style to spend? [[[This question has been answered. See below.]]]

As a follow-up question, since Vassals generally cannot engage in risks, what effect would invoking an aspect have?

Would the character get three bonus dice for a risk appropriate to the aspect, per the usual effect of invoking an aspect (representing the assistance of their vassal)? This would make Vassals similar to tools, which I think is very appropriate.

Or, alternatively, does this give the Vassal three dice to engage in a risk on behalf of the character? When they engage in these risks, do they get to add their level to the dice pool, instead of a virtue? Do they get to use their name? If they use their master's Style to invoke an aspect, can they spend these Style points out of the character's pool without them knowing? This version allows the Vassals more freedom to act on their lord's behalf...something which could be very dangerous in the wrong hands...

Re: How does a non-NPC vassal invoke an aspect?

PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:03 am
by drnuncheon
Simple answer: Style Points are not necessary to invoke an Aspect. They just refresh it and allow you to use it again in the same session. So, a vassal with an Aspect could

That said, given that they generally don't engage in risks, I'd be inclined to treat any aspects as merely placeholders for fleshing out the character before they become an NPC. (I'm half convinced that the reference to non-NPC vassals having aspects is a mistake or holdover from an earlier version of the rules, given that Aspects are one of the things that are always referenced when talking about a Vassal becoming an NPC.)

Re: How does a non-NPC vassal invoke an aspect?

PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:45 am
by LordWyrmsBane
Simple answer: Style Points are not necessary to invoke an Aspect. They just refresh it and allow you to use it again in the same session.


drnuncheon, thank you for pointing that out. I had forgotten that. That answers the question of how they use them, and (looking at my question again) I even answered how the Vassals could earn Style points to refresh their own Aspects (via the Aspect's tag or compel).

It does seem that you also share my confusion about how a Vassal's aspects are used in game play. I'm going to update the thread title to more accurately reflect the actual question we would both like answered.

Re: What is the effect of a non-NPC vassal invoking an aspect?

PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2011 4:10 am
by 8thavenger
So say you've hired an artist vassal (rank 1) and you need a gift for baron Fyx's althua this winter. Give him the aspect "Painter" and he can roll 4 dice for creating art.
Your personal guard with the "Defense In Depth" aspect can gain 3 dice for defending your region.

It's not that they don't take risks, it just happens off screen.

Re: What is the effect of a non-NPC vassal invoking an aspect?

PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:19 pm
by LordWyrmsBane
8thavenger, thanks for the reply. It sounds like you are advocating the second option.

So say you've hired an artist vassal (rank 1) and you need a gift for baron Fyx's althua this winter. Give him the aspect "Painter" and he can roll 4 dice for creating art.


It looks like you are adding the Rank of the vassal to the pool he gets. So, if this is the case, a non-NPC vassal can have a maximum pool (not counting Free Aspects) of:

3 dice (Rank 3)
+ 1 die (Name)
+ 3 dice (Invoke an Aspect)
+ 2 dice (Tag an Aspect)
------------------
9 total dice pool (4 dice to roll, plus 5 wagers)

That's pretty good, given that a PC or NPC has a max pool of 11 (+ the rank of their Castle, if at home)