Bitter Burner

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A weapon currently wielded by an NPC in my Shogunate game, a rock and rolling gang member who stole it from an opera house and took it on a world-wide tour. This has both 3rd and Essence versions; the Essence Version is below the 3rd version.

As always, Criticism is welcome and I'll respond to it as posted.

Bitter Burner
Artifact 3 Red Jade Grimcleaver Ruan
Tags; Lethal, Melee, Chopping
Accuracy: +3, Damage; +12L Defense; +1, Overwhelming; 4

A famed instrument that has found a home in many opera houses, Bitter Burner is a daruan with a razor sharp edge hidden around the base of the instrument, made of Red Jade and strung with strings of Adamant. It has played any number of famous pieces in the hands of any number of famous composers, but just as stubbornly has it found itself playing at washed out taverns and holes in the wall in the hands of excitable, emotional Dragonblooded and Solars who want to bring their music into the world, and it is at home in any location. It presses those that grasp it to live their own lives, and to fill the world with the music they love.

Attunement Effect; Bitter Burner counts as exceptional equipment for performing music, adding 2 dice to the roll. In addition, whenever the Exalt successfully instills an emotion into a significant character in a scene, they may recover 1 willpower, and if the scene breaks out into violence, increase their Initiative after rolling Join Battle by 2 per influenced, significant character.

In addition, Bitter Burner builds Notes for each time they roll or use their Performance in combat, up to a maximum of (Character’s Essence) Notes. This includes things like calculating Defense with Performance- gaining a Note for applying that defense- or attacking with performance- gaining a Note for attacking-.

Heart Igniting Performance
Cost; - Mins; Essence 1
Type; Permanent
Keywords; Resonant
Duration; Permanent
Prerequisites; None
    The sound of her strings is more than just a beautiful song expressing her emotions; it can be used to turn those emotions to her own defense when threatened. After learning this charm, the Exalt may use Performance as the ability for any ranged attack created from a Melee charm, or for the Elemental Bolt ability for a Dragonblooded.
    Resonant; Resonant Exalts learn this charm for free after attuning to Bitter Burner

Burning Solo
Cost; 3m, 1i Mins; Essence 1
Type; Reflexive
Keywords; Withering-Only, Resonant
Duration; Instant
Prerequisites; None
    Flames lick the Exalt’s fingers and burst forth from Bitter Burner as they swing the weapon; even in violence, the ruan extols it’s musical acumen, and the Exalt continues to play her music. This charm enhances a Withering Attack, increasing the Exalt’s Overwhelming by the amount of Notes she has.
    Resonant; a Resonant Exalt may expend all of her Notes to transform that many dice on her withering damage roll to successes if she pays 2 additional motes.
    Special Activation Rules; This charm is unlocked automatically for attuning to Bitter Burner

Lost in the Song
Cost; 3m, 2i Mins; Essence 1
Type; Reflexive
Keywords; Uniform
Duration; Instant
Prerequisites; None
    Even the slings and arrows of a rude crowd aren’t enough to keep the Exalt from baring her soul to those that are listening, and turning those who hate her into ardent supporters is just the path of a musician. The exalt may activate this charm in response to an attack; The Exalt is not hit if the attack bares successes equal to her Defense, and she may make an Instill action against an opponent if they miss her on their attack roll

Absolute Power Ballad
Cost; 4m, 1wp 1+ Notes Mins; Essence 2
Type; Supplemental
Keywords; Decisive-Only
Duration; Instant
Prerequisites; Burning Solo
    An ear-splitting solo and a skull crushing finale are really just two sides of the same coin, if you don’t think too hard about what was just said. So when Bitter Burner is burning hot, and the song is really reaching from the floor to the ceiling, don’t be surprised when the Exalt slices your head off with the edge of the axe; it’s all part of the show, after all. For each note spent empowering this charm, an extra success on the attack roll is added to the damage roll. This charm is activated after the attack is confirmed to have hit.

Hot Blooded Jams
Cost; 4m, 1+ Charges Mins; Essence 2
Type; Reflexive
Keywords; Uniform
Duration; Instant
Prerequisites; Lost in the Song
    Even at the edge of being struck, the Exalt will not stop playing. A blazing inferno rises from her ferocious creation, battering back any attempt to strike her in a wave of blistering heat and musical edge. After an attack has been rolled against the Exalt, the Exalt may activate this charm to increase her Defense by 1 per Note she spends on activating it.

Roaring Dragon of Fire and Flames
Cost; +4m, 1wp, 1LHL/round Mins; Essence 3
Type; Supplemental
Keywords; None
Duration; One Performance
Prerequisites; Any ‘Battle Anthem’ charm.
    The Bitter Burner erupts into an inferno of flames as the Exalt is outlined by the fires swirling around them; the whole world has become their stage, and even if they’re going to burn up doing it, they’re going to play a song so loud and so full of their beliefs that it’s all the audience can even think about. This charm enhances the prerequisite; All allies ignore 1 point of any sort of penalty affecting their actions, +1 additional point per round this charm is active, up to (Essence) penalties. In addition, channeling a Willpower grants the individual 2 successes, instead of 1.

Exalted Essence Version:

Accuracy +1, Damage +2, Defense +1, Overwhelming 4
Type; Medium Melee Weapon
Tags; Melee, Artifact, Chopping, Balanced
Hearthstone Slot; 1

    The Exalt may make Build Power actions using Performance to play Bitter Burner, which add 2 to the total Power generated by the action. After a Build Power action in this fashion, the axe catches fire, restoring 2 motes through the Breath of War instead of 1 while it’s on fire

Burning Axe Finale
Prerequisite; Performance 3, Close Combat 3, lighting the Axe on fire using it’s basic ability
A Decisive attack made while Bitter Burner is on fire extinguishes the flames, adding the Exalt’s (Performance) to her Decisive Damage roll.

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andrix
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Enjoy the idea of collecting notes and then using the charms to what I assume is meant to be 'playing' them. Is there a way that you could maybe lean into that a little more? Right now it feels like an extra pool that builds in size and is the spent in a single go, what might make this really sing (pardon the pun) would be if you could find a way to spend them one after another or in a sequence so that it feels like one note following the next...I'm not immediately sure how that doesn't end up super complicated to implement
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andrix wrote: Mon Jul 05, 2021 4:53 am Enjoy the idea of collecting notes and then using the charms to what I assume is meant to be 'playing' them. Is there a way that you could maybe lean into that a little more? Right now it feels like an extra pool that builds in size and is the spent in a single go, what might make this really sing (pardon the pun) would be if you could find a way to spend them one after another or in a sequence so that it feels like one note following the next...I'm not immediately sure how that doesn't end up super complicated to implement

There's nothing stopping you from doing this, other then it becoming slightly more complex to track and some of the charms working at odds with each other, it simply clashes with my personal belief of what an Artifact 3 should look like.

I don't believe Artifact 3s should completely change your combat style, they should only enhance what's already there. The idea of turning it into a resource you churn through over an extended period belongs in the realm of Artifact 4s and 5s, to me; those are where you really start to get into an artifact that completely defines your combat style; that's why Bitter Burner can't actually let you, generally, attack or defend with Performance. If it was Artifact 4 or 5, it could, but since it's Artifact 3, you have to bring your own part to the table to get the best benefit out of it, so to speak.

However; just because those are the rules I follow doesn't mean that everyone else has to, and there's nothing wrong with a little experimentation. In this case, the charm you're after could look something like this;

Escalating Burning Flame
Cost; 3m, 1 Note Mins; Essence 2
Type; Reflexive
Keywords; Dual
Duration; Instant
Prerequisites; Burning Solo
     The Exalt plays her song no matter the difficulty in producing it, and her listeners must either bow their heads or flee in terror as she rocks the stage and the flames around her grow into a larger and larger burning ring. The Exalt activates this charm after confirming that her attack has hit, and doubles 9s on the attack roll specifically for the purpose of calculating extra successes. This can not make an attack that missed into a hit. If she activated this charm on her previous attack, she doubles 8s in the same fashion, if she has activated it on her previous two attacks it doubles 7s.
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