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Balseraph History and Culture

Discussion in 'Fall from Heaven Lore' started by thewyrm, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Fenboy

    Fenboy King

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    Either way, she's the closest thing to a fairytale princess FFH has. I always liked that. :evil:
     
  2. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    So the Mimic unit. Are we to assume they have this ability because being trained to fight in the arena, Balseraph swordsmen grow to be able to adapt to whatever their opponant throw at them? Or is it simply because the carnies are that good at copying the movement and manerisms of others, like a great actor?
     
  3. loocas

    loocas Prince

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    She is antisocial and misanthropic because she sees people as lesser beings than her puppets. She isn't childish just because she's a child. She's lucid enough to know the image she projects, and she plays to that. She's clever and greedy and she spoils herself. She just takes after her dad. That's how I see her.
     
  4. KillerClowns

    KillerClowns Emperor

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    Another question. Who's really the more dangerous of the duo, Keelyn or Perpentach? I thought about it, and I honestly think that of the two, I'd rather trust Perpentach with my life. Perpentach is unpredictable, certainly, but he keeps his word, technically at any rate, and has been known to let worthy opponents go unscathed (as in Lurchiup leader's pedia). Keelyn, I suspect, would happily break her word outright without so much as a twinge of regret and kill for a quick laugh. Also, if Perpentach grows bored of you, he might release you in the unlikey event he's feeling benevolent. Keelyn would certainly kill you, or worse. Basically, Perpentach is insane but sometimes merciful, while Keelyn is consistently evil. At least, that's how I see it.
     
  5. Lance of Llanwy

    Lance of Llanwy King

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    Keelyn is definitely spoiled(from her diplo quotes, she always seems to expect you to bring her gifts), but, IMO, ultimately rather innocent and naive. Maybe even friendly, in a way. For example, were AV to be adopted, she would probably be entirely oblivious to the world turning into a hell: indeed, she might even like it because her friends can stay longer! There's nothing odd about the mad world of Perpentach to her, it's her existence. It's completely and totally normal. So, in a way, she's also insane.
     
  6. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    Not having a true childhood and being raised in a madhouse means to me that she probably dines with demons, murders people for fun, and yet still sleeps with a night light on and giggles when thinking of cute boys.
     
  7. Mewtarthio

    Mewtarthio Emperor

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    Yes, but Perpentach might decide to take over your mind, sentence you to personality death, and then transfer his conciousness into your physical frame. Remember, he's an extremely powerful telepath. At least Keelyn won't violate that sanctity. She'll just have "Puppy" devour your soul or something. Actually, on second thought, could you just smuggle me a razor?

    That's even creepier. I imagine that a boy she decides she likes could visit his girlfriend's house to find a scene reminiscent of Einon's 'pedia entry, except Keelyn is sitting there, too, puppetting the possessed body's mouth like a bad ventriloquist and saying stuff like, "Dur, I don't want to be your girlfriend anymore, 'cuz I'm all stupid and icky. Hee, hee!"
     
  8. KillerClowns

    KillerClowns Emperor

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    *Shudders.* I stand by my case (Keelyn is scarier than Perpentach, although both are horrifying) with above quotes as evidence. Although the razor idea is looking like the best one in either situation.
     
  9. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    Amazing that someone that was evidently created for no other reason than to give Balseraph players a chance to play without the insane trait could become such an amazing and interesting character in their own right. I think Keelyn and Ethne are the two most interesting leaders in the game.

    My heart actually breaks a little when I think about what Keelyn's childhood must have been like. Total and complete abondonment. Your only friends are demonic slaves. Think of the things those demons must have done to her to slowly condition her. Like that imp in her 'pedia entry who manipulates her into summoning him herself. Evil little [expletive]. It is one of the reasons I choose to believe Giggles has genuine affection for her and follows her of his own free will. I want there to be SOMETHING decent in her life, even if it is the twisted love of a balor.
     
  10. loocas

    loocas Prince

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    She eats birds too.
     
  11. KillerClowns

    KillerClowns Emperor

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    Two bits. First, the topic du jour, Keelyn.
    I've mentioned this before, but I've always seen Keelyn as the brains of the operations. She's the daughter of a powerful telepath, and while she isn't formally trained, she's proven a powerful sorceress. She probably influences her demonic henchmen as much as, if not more than, they influence her. I love the image of the fierce servants of Hell being unwittingly transformed into the playthings of a girl who doesn't fully grasp her own power.

    I see it the carny way. They see their opponents fighting better than they do and, mostly for their own amusement, copy that new "trick" exactly. But they remember what they've learned as well and use it on their other enemies. Although perhaps, since we're talking about the Balseraphs, a weak form of mind reading is involved as well; they might literally steal the skill from their foes' minds.
    I can see the Mimics being a slightly irritating foe either way.

    Imagine you're a Bannor soldier, and you suddenly see a perfectly ordered legion. Except their colors are bright and flamboyant, and the soldiers are grinning like it's some sort of hilarious joke... then you see one raise the Balseraph banner in parody of the ceremonies used to raise the Bannor one. Your own legion attacks, expecting them to break ranks like the clowns they are... but they just smile even more and prepare, in Bannor fashion, to meet the charge. And suddenly, you're the ones breaking ranks, panicking at the thought of facing an enemy so perfectly trained in Bannor tactics. And the Balseraphs prove better Bannor then the Bannor themselves by, in perfectly regimented fashion, splitting off to encircle and annihilate you, not giving up the mimicry for even the briefest second.
    I think I might have written a rough draft of the Mimic Pedia entry... unless the team has plans already.

    I also see them holding the parody of whatever they've faced in every moment, even when nobody is watching. Mimics impersonating the Doviello would be just as fierce and wild as them, swinging the bodies of their fallen foes with ruthless brutality in battle and feasting as the Doviello do after the battle. Of course, everything would be a parody. If a Bannor ceremony required the lighting of a flame, the Balseraph version would do so with a fart. The Balseraph version of a Doviello feast would take almost as much influence from a hedonistic masquerade as it did a pagan feast; its centerpiece wouldn't be a roasted boar, but some stitched-together amalgamation of pig, cow, dog, and human parts. Ones who learned their tricks from Elohim monks would make ridiculous pilgrimages to various brothels as a real monk might to holy temples and give ridiculous but worthless trinkets to the poor of the Balseraph people where a real monk would give money.
     
  12. Nikis-Knight

    Nikis-Knight Deity

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    Actually, she was created before the Insane trait was. But after all the other leaders.
     
  13. Mewtarthio

    Mewtarthio Emperor

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    But wasn't the Insane trait planned at the time? I seem to recall Kael mentioning that she was added so that the Balseraphs wouldn't necessarily have to worry about the Insane trait.
     
  14. Nikis-Knight

    Nikis-Knight Deity

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    Well, why she was created and why she was added could very well have been two different things. I'm not quite sure when Kael had decided on implementing insane, though it and Keelyn were suggested at about the same time, iirc.
     
  15. Lance of Llanwy

    Lance of Llanwy King

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    Yeah, it seems pretty clear to me she has no conception of what death actually is. If you notice, in her defeat quote, she's whining about how she's going to be unsummoned, which leads me to believe her childhood with demons have led her to believe that killing isn't bad because they just go back to some place else perfectly fine.
     
  16. Fenboy

    Fenboy King

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    I'm reserving judgement on the Mimics until there's unique art for them, but I like what you've come up with there.
     
  17. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    This isn't really a question on history or culture, but seeing as this thread isn't super active I think we can take a short change in direction.

    In a response to the game balance thread I put forth my argument that the game is more fun when you role play your civ. I used the specific example that while incredibly powerful, I never have Balseraph Druids because I don't think it is "in character" for the Balseraph civ to not be evil. Am I alone in this play style?

    I'd like to hear your opinions on the subject, specificaly in regards to how you play as the Balseraph.
     
  18. Sofista

    Sofista card-carrying

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    I agree overall, Balseraphs or not. Roleplaying is firmly a factor in how I play: the Seriously Evil Guys (Sheaim, Calabim) won't. Have. Order. Won't. Use. Public Healers. Likewise, I see no sense in the good guys going around backstabbing anyone: AV civs excluded, of course.
    Or I'm playing a dwarven civ and meet the other: the way I see it, there should be a big hug somewhere down the line. Or I play Falamar: indulging female leaders seems the natural thing to do. The list could go on...
     
  19. ophite

    ophite Chieftain

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    Re: roleplaying -- I really don't see the Balseraphs as that evil. Perpentach is mad and uncaring, but has a perverse sense of honor. And if Keelyn ever grew up and realized what she was doing, I think she'd be capable of reforming the Balseraphs as well.
     
  20. Mewtarthio

    Mewtarthio Emperor

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    I like justifying odd choices, like Overlords Elohim or Order Calabim. Still, I generally stick to roleplaying: I mostly attack people of a different religion, treat my allies with respect, etc.

    That being said, I don't see how an alignment shift is out of character for anyone. I mean, the game's got built-in rules to handle alignment shifts, so there's no sense in claiming that they're illogical. Granted, Order Balseraphs do seem kind of odd, but aside from that, anything would make sense if you just said that they thought the religion looked fun.

    I've posted a thousand times before that Order Calabim are seriously awesome flavorwise (there's already precedent with the psychotically mad Basium getting bonuses for killing Good civs that don't join his war), so there's no sense in reiterating it now. Public Healers also makes some sense: You don't want your food do get spoiled, do you? Now, Order Sheaim takes a lot of work to justify (it can be done, but then again, so can Veil Elohim, if you really stretch), but thankfully that's a pretty counterintuitive combination anyway: You get bonuses for increasing the Armageddon Counter, not to mention synergy with the Veil Disciples, so trying to run that weird combination is an exercise is pain anyway.

    If Keelyn ever grew up and realized what she was doing, I'd put good money on her falling all the way into truly sadistic evil rather than unknowing childish evil. People, as a rule, generally don't like to believe that their entire lives have been lies and that they're actions have been wrong this whole time. They're far more likely to justify their actions than they are to repent. That goes double when you've been raised by demons with very little interaction with actual human beings. I'm not saying it's impossible, though. I just like playing Devil's Advocate.
     

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