Headscratchers: Werewolf: The Apocalypse
Lupus Training and Skills
- The idea that lupus are completely unaware how to do anything other than be a wolf when they start play. The biggest headscratch is that even some books assume lupus just go through their rite of passage right after their shift without being taught anything but the bare basics. Don't most tribes spent YEARS teaching the cubs and waiting until they are ready for their Rite? Hence why you basic homid shifts at 14, but starts play at 16-17. Also, the rules state that lupus CAN buy stats like etiquette and computer with freebies, so it can be assumed they get some basic education. Besides, aside from Talons, the Nation would not let a potential veil breach join a tribe unless they were sure it could fake it.
- The whole mess of Lupus Garou not to mention tons of psychological knowledge in the real world about how children raised as feral or by animals fit into human society (spoilers:not very damn well) is probably why this aspect was rightfully excised in the New World of Darkness. They could have side-stepped this issue, I think, by simply stating that wolves in the Old World of Darkness were actually sentient and linguistic creatures who had been hiding their nature from humans (think Wolf's Rain) but they didn't.
- Um, it is stated that Lupus Garou are always ahead of the curve compared to their non-Garou kin, so it's essential a wizard did it.
- My issue wasn't about wether or not they should be smart, it's that given it takes years to teach homid kids, we can assume lupus get the same treatment. Yet they are most often assumed to know nothing, while the rules state they CAN.
- This could be explained through any number of things. And using Freebie points to learn some of these skills won't turn them into an expert.
- The fact that all Lupus have human beings somewhere in their family tree will never stop being horrifying.
- The Red Talons would like to have a word with you, being that they make a point of violently murdering any Talon who even attempts to mate with a Homid. This is the tribe that went through the effort of making a rite just to purify human flesh and is stated as being the tribe with the lowest population one can surmise that they do not allow any new joiners if they can't prove that their family tree is entirely lupus.
Why Do Black Spiral Dancers Have Lunar Auspices?
- Black Spiral Dancer Garou have lunar auspices like their Gaian counterparts. Luna is Gaia's sister and ally, so why does she still exert her influence over Garou who serve the Wyrm? One would think that Luna would withhold her blessing from a faction of Garou who are waging war on Gaia.
- To boot, Luna withholds her blessing from the Nuwisha out of pique over an ancient insult. Why would she withhold her blessing from the Nuwisha, who serve Gaia, but still exert influence over the Wyrm-tainted Black Spiral Dancers?
- Probably because Luna doesn't have the power to distinquish between the two, but can for the Nuwisha since they're a different changing breed.
- Also, the Wyrm might block Luna from removing that power from its servants, since it definitely outranks her.
Garou As Parents
- Garou are expected to take a (preferrably kinfolk) mate and breed at some point in their lives. How on earth could a Garou be a halfway decent parent? Their rage means that they would lash out at their offspring when faced with the normal frustrations of parenting. Many Garou are so busy fighting the Wyrm that little time is available for raising a family. To boot, some homid Garou live on the fringes of human society, so without jobs, how could they even afford to raise children?
- Generally speaking? I doubt they are supposed to be great parents as such. For anyone with a poor Willpower/Rage ratio being an absentee father who sends home money or gets his baby-mama (or baby-daddy, esp. insofar as the Furies are concerned) to move to a sept compound is the best case scenario. Even under optimal situations the closest comparison would be the dependents of someone in SOCOM (Special Forces Soldiers).
- The most common solution is that the Garou gives up their child to a kin family who raises the child and provides for them, with the Garou playing the role of an Aunt or Uncle who visits every once in awhile. As for the homid Garou on the fringe, they would be living with a Sept, who would help out.
- We know that the mating of a Garou and their kinfolk partner results in either kinfolk or Garou offspring. We know that the mating of two Garou results in metis offspring. What happens if a Garou reproduces with one of the Fera? Is the resulting offspring kinfolk of both breeds? Or some kind of hybrid creature, such as a were-wolfraven or were-wolfrat? If so, do the Garou tribes and Fera have any membership protocol for mixed kinfolk or mixed race supernatural creatures?
- There is no such thing as shifter hybrids. If the mother is a Lupus-breed Garou or the equivalent for other changing breeds, the offspring is always that changing breed or kinfolk. If the mother is Homid, it can go either way, with the scale tipping towards whoever has higher Pure Breed. But the kid is always a shifter or kinfolk of one breed or the other.
- Some books flirt with the idea of mixed breed beings. For example, Oisin Mac Gaelach's story in Garou Saga describes a man of both Garou and Corax ancestry. The first edition Nuwisha breedbook notes that wolf and coyote breeding produced red wolves, so it's plausible that mixed Garou/Nuwisha kinfolk exist in the World of Darkness.
How Do Hives Stay Hidden?
- How do Black Spiral Dancer hives stay hidden from humans and Gaia Garou? Aren't observers going to notice a lot of scary-looking people and wolves coming out of a cavern entrance? Aren't they going to notice said scary-looking people transporting food, weapons, and other supplies to a cavern entrance? Wouldn't balefire and strange noises coming from hives make observers suspicious? Even if hive entrances are tucked away in remote locations, someone is going to notice all this.
- Spirals may be insane but they're not stupid enough to avoid such simple measures as investing in acoustics to stop humans from investigating and discrete entrances so nobody notices the supplies (weapons being irrelevant since they're already nine-feet-tall mobile death machines), the same way Gaian Garou hide urban caern's. A hive in a city is going to have it's entrance hidden in places humans don't frequent or inside buildings, so even if your average human sees someone moving boxes into a building he's not going to think twice about what's going on in there compared to another other building in the city, and sound is going to have a hard time escaping to street-level anyway. For a rural Hive it's far enough away from any population centre that your average human who gets close is going to be on their own and easy to grab and take back as that night's dinner/Soul-raped into getting a Bane and sent off to fight for the Wyrm. As for Gaian Garou, they are constantly outnumbered by the Spirals who have no issue with Metis and any Gaian Garou who get too close will get ambushed and either get killed, converted or turned into Brood Mares to make more Metis to further advance their numbers advantage. And that's assuming they can locate the general area of the hive from the Wyrm's efforts to spread it's corruption everywhere.
- Just think about cartel compounds in bad neighborhoods, or fundamentalist militia men out in the woods. We have those in the real world, and they get away with a lot. Odd in crappier normals and scarier bad guys, and it's easy to see. Both these groups usually get away with what they do by being just scary enough that people worry what MIGHT happen if they confront them, but not so obviously scary that people know what's going to happen (since then, they would call the authorities).
Why Does the Wyrm Focus on Gaia?
- Write-ups on the planetary Incarna suggest that (with the exception of Rorg's realm) the Wyrm has largely left the other planets alone. Why has the Wyrm focuses so much of its efforts on Gaia while ignoring the other planets? It can't be soley because of Gaia's richness of life, because Tambiyah's realm (Venus) is lush and verdant in the Umbra, for instance.
- Maybe it doesn't want to fight a war on multiple fronts?
- First off; Gaia is not the planetary Incarna of Earth, Eshtarra is (the exact relationship between Gaia and Eshtarra is complicated). But basically Gaia is the absolute top of the totem pole, the Wyrm cannot suceed so long as Gaia is still alive. Leaving Gaia/Eshtarra to attack anyone else would mean losing your foothold on Earth and push the Wyrm's victory further back.
Why Is the Wyld Doing the Wyrm's Work?
- The Wyld is the primal force of creation and change, whereas the Wyrm was the force of destruction and death (at least before it went insane). Why then do so many Wyld-aligned races focus on death and destruction? For example, the Red Talons are ruthless killers, and some of the more hardline Talons would like to see humanity wiped out. The Rokea are also reknown as killers. The Ratkin's original purpose was to kill excess humans. Why do Wyld-oriented creatures have such an affinity for death and destruction, which is technically part of the the Wyrm's portfolio?
- The Wyld is the creative and changing force of the Triat, but it's also reflected in and tied with untamed nature, which tends to be pretty violent itself. And the destructive allies of the Wyld tend to be more destructive in a "natural" sense of predation, population control, etc. than the "maintaining the cosmic balance and destroying that which is flawed and has no place" sense that the Wyrm once presided over or the "wanton cruelty, torture, and random acts of violence" of the modern Wyrm. Granted, Red Talons at least have been descending more and more into the latter, but it's explicitly stated that they're in danger of falling to the Wyrm because of this. On top of that, humanity — particularly post-industrial, Technocracy-influenced humanity — spreads the influence of the Weaver, which the Wyld has a vested interest in stopping, even if it means stepping outside its intended role.
Wyrm servants are okay with a massive Veil breach?
- Chronicles of the Black Labyrinth was compiled by Frater I.I. and published for public consumption in-universe. The book contains a wealth of information on the Black Spiral Dancers and Seventh Generation, who normally do their utmost to stay hidden. Why haven't the Black Spiral Dancers torn Frater I.I. to shreds for such a massive Veil breach? For that matter, why hasn't the Seventh Generation punished Frater I.I. for releasing information about their history and rites?
- You can't kill someone you can't find. With enough preparations he could keep himself hidden from all but the most dedicated hunters. As for the Seventh Generation, they had much more pressing issues at the time in the form of Jonas Albrecht and company looking to rip them to shreds.
Black Furies and Mistreated Female Kinfolk
- Kinfolk states that some homid Garou men mistreat their kinfolk wives, subjecting them to forced breeding and domestic abuse. However, the Black Fury tribe is conspicuously passive about this problem, despite treating their own female kinfolk well. Since the Black Furies' tribal laws forbid them from turning a blind eye to violence against women, aren't they bound by duty to protect these women and avenge their mistreatment?
- IIRC, more than a few do call out fellow Garou over outright abuse and spirit off mistreated Kinfolk, however in terms of the Breed For The Sake Of Gaia part the Furies hold to that themselves.
- In the wild, coyotes live in small family packs. In older editions of Werewolf: The Apocalypse, the Nuwisha do not organize themselves into packs, but rather operate independently. Since the other changing breeds reflect the behaviors of their animal cousins, why don't the Nuwisha operate in packs like the Garou?
- Because Coyote thought it was funny.
Ananasa's opal prison
- How is it that ancient Garou were able to crack the opal containment cell holding Ananasa? Neither Ananasa nor the Wyrm were able to break the opal open, so if two powerful deities couldn't damage it, how could a group of Garou?
- Also, when the Garou cracked the opal, it allowed Ananasa to communicate with distant Ananasi. However, the Wyrm's corrupution still can't seep into the opal. How is it that Ananasa's power can escape the opal, but the energy of a much more powerful deity can't breach it?
- The Wyrm doesn't realise that there is a crack in the Opal and thus doesn't try to seep into it. In the Annasi Apocalypse scenario the Wyrm does become aware of the crack and rather quickly exploits it, leading to the Annasi's fall.
- It's more a matter of scale. Because both of them operate on such a massive scale they lack the finesse and perspective that lesser beings have. Think of it as the difference between a dog and an ant getting through a door; the dog is limited to physically breaking it but the ant break in easier by virtue of being smaller and only needing to make a smaller hole that would be almost invisible to the dog.