Forsaken

Our first World of Darkness campaign

Werewolf: the Forsaken is about a secret race of lycanthropes tasked with ensuring harmony between the overlapping worlds of spirit and flesh.

First change

This is way more horrific than it sounds!

Spirits are all predatory sociopaths who single-mindedly nurture their purviews, and the ills of mankind attract spirits of the worst sort, creating a vicious cycle of danger and iniquity the werewolves must try to stop.

Add to that the Inter-pack Politics, the Possessed, and the terrifying parasites called Hosts and werewolfing is a harrowing gig.

Oh, and also the far more organized and vicious Pure Tribes, waging a genocidal war against the Forsaken for the crimes of breaking the First World and – far worse – clinging to their humanity.

So yeah. Them.

Good luck!


Narrative elements
Pretention engines, full power!

Style
Doggy, one imagines

The style of this campaign will resemble a gritty crime action-drama such as Sons of Anarchy, The Shield, Justified, and Deadwood.

As such, depictions of crime will be both gritty and somewhat exaggerated. The good will be clinging for dear life amid a rush of decay, and the evil will often be hackle-raisingly awful. Werewolves are enemies of corruption and rot, and you can’t depict those without the worst of human cruelty. Serial murder, rape, child abuse, and perhaps worse will all make appearances, though not in their most graphic forms.

This will not be a pulpy, high-adventure series where you go a mythic journey to save the world, but the story of a group of bold rebels holding onto honor and loyalty in a world of temptation and betrayal. The heroes themselves should be believable and flawed, and can even be very distasteful individuals, but ultimately committed to the ideals their pack and MC represents.

Tone
Mostly black, brown, and gray, with generous splashes of red

Dark and grim, but heroic. Everything is going to hell, but you all have a sacred task passed down since before time started passing. You will shred this rotten world for whatever sweetness remains, take the fattest parts for yourself, and share with those in your charge.

Your characters may or may not be criminals themselves, but as outlaws and werewolves, you must by necessity operate outside the law. As such, you must deal with the cast-offs and renegades of society, and the more brutal and dangerous horrors of the World of Darkness. Without an overarching structure for support, and with society itself splintering in the new depression, your group will try and turn your territory into a haven of balance and safety even as the world goes down the drain.

That does not mean our campaign won’t be high-stakes and action-packed, or that it will just be a grinding, tragic downer. You will care for the people and spirits in your territory, and protecting them will seem just as important as saving the world.

The surreal creatures and vistas of the spirit world can make for absolutely breathtaking action, and virtue casts a bright light in times of darkness. Beowulf is a pretty grim story, but it is absolutely uplifting, even when they lay the hero down for his funeral pyre.

To put it another way, you are not pulp Vikings, musclebound barbarians in horned hats and furry boots out of a Frazetta drawing. You are historic Vikings, fierce but shrewd warriors and traders seeking glory and riches rather than eke a living off the barren land. When pulp Vikings meet a monster, they charge in boisterously. That’s not horror. You will know terror, and triumph. Or not.

Themes
From Shaft
Heroism

Bogatyr

Not heroism in the Superman, go-save-the-world sense, but heroism in the Beowulf/Achilles/Musashi fight-for-your-people-and-win-everlasting glory sense. Werewolves are very much driven by a sense of duty and a desire for glory and renown in fulfilling that duty.

The Uratha honor mighty warriors, clever tricksters, wise seers, brave leaders, and stirring poets. Heroism is not altruism (though kindness is not discouraged.) It is proving you, and therefore your pack, is the best around at what you do. It’s about the superhuman effort of protecting people and territory, and looking badass doing it.

Loyalty

The world is falling apart. Bonds of fellowship are breaking down. This is the hour of wolves and shattered shields. As society breaks down, a pack’s loyalty is its most precious asset.

Werewolves are the most tightly knit supernatural beings in the World of Darkness. The pack is home and family, the alpha’s word the highest law. You may hate each other as only family can, but you must preserve your loyalty to the pack, or you are all lost.

Loyalty is also a huge factor in motorcycle clubs, who insist on being called clubs specifically because membership is so important. You’re not just an assembly of random thugs, you’re a brotherhood of free spirits, united and strong.

I will be challenging this loyalty at every turn, and it may not always be possible to preserve both your loyalty and your life.


What can I play?
Only Glitter Boys and Psionics

Werewolves identify themselves by Tribe according to philosophy, and by aptitude into Auspices. You can think of these as race and class respectively, but in practice they combine more closely than that, each determining about half of your powers.

The Tribes of the Moon
Called quest

Blood talon

Werewolves choose their tribes during a rite of passage, as your tribe defines your approach to your werelife, not your nationality or family. Some families do gravitate toward certain outlooks the way human families might share a political party or religion, but as with all such families, rebellion does happen.

Blood Talons: Devotees of bloody battle
Bone Shadows: Occultists with close ties to the spirit courts
Hunters in Darkness: Stealthy guardians of sacred places
Iron Masters: Predators of the urban jungle
Storm Lords: Stern and dynamic leaders

Auspices
Moon over my hammy

Auspices

The moon under which you first shift indicates your task within your pack.

Irraka: Scouts and tricksters under the new moon
Cahalith: Lorekeepers blessed by the waxing moon
Elodoth: The half-moon’s diplomats and visionaries
Ithaeur: Seers and shamans, guided by the crescent moon
Rahu: Raging warriors of the full moon


The Pack
The family that preys together

Werewolves call themselves Uratha, the People, but they do not identify with a single united society. Rather, the primary social unit among werewolves is the pack.

A werewolf pack functions much like a mundane wolf pack. There is an alpha who leads (though the pecking order under the alpha is not always so strict), with hunting and fighting being the primary activity that brings the pack together.

Pack members are closer than family. These are not just your buddies you adventure and split the loot with. These are your lifetime helpmeets and companions.

In the midst of The Second Depression and The Three Wars, you have formed a pack of Uratha and staked out a territory to protect and exploit. You must all agree on your pack’s totem spirit, your primary goal and philosophy, and think of a reason why each character would support both.

Wolfpack howling


Other information
UPMC – Sons of Thunder Motorcycle Club, Ukiah Pack
Character relationships – A list of player relationship requirements and relationship chart1
Outlaws – A gateway to outlaw motorcycle clubs in general and your club in particular
Mendocino County – Setting information for Ukiah and the surrounding territory
Resources – Tools and inspiration aplenty

1 Coming soon

Forsaken

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