Refresh is a nice mechanic introduced in the DFRPG to manage FATE pools and allow players to make a conscious trade-off between being FATE-point heavy and Stunt heavy. FATE points allow a player to make some in-game choices to affect positive outcomes for their character: spend a FATE point and get a skill roll shift; spend a FATE point and frame a scene; spend a FATE point and invoke an Aspect to “do something cool.” FATE points give PCs command over their own narrative during the game time and the Refresh limit dictates the tradeoff between just-in-time FATE spends and always-on Stunts.
Stunts modify skills. For example, a high Endurance character might have SUPER TOUGHNESS or FAST HEAL. The player pays for this stunt out of their character’s refresh pool. In return for having, in essence, an always-on FATE point spend, the player spend a permanent point from their Refresh pool. If SUPER TOUGHNESS costs -1, the player has the Stunt and now a Refresh of CAP-1.
Magic is a Stunt. It modifies the Lore skill. How it modifies the Lore skill depends on the Magic and the Stunt. As all Stunts have a cost, Magic has a Refresh cost associated with it. Thus, for example, if White Stone Alchemy has a cost of -3, the player can use White Stone Alchemy, and all that entails, as a Stunt and has a Refresh of CAP-3.
Nephilim FATE uses the Submerged Template from DFRPG — 35 skill points, 10 Refresh. Magic-based stunts have a Refresh cost. The Alchemist above has a 7 Refresh pool and Alchemy. When the session ends or the GM decides the current story arc has wrapped, the player then fills the character’s Refresh pool up to a maximum of 7.
No Nephilim can go below 1 Refresh. Less than 1 Refresh represents a state of permanent Khaiba. The Nephililm pushed the boundaries of the forces with magic to a breaking point and no longer has any control of their self. The Strength Arcanum* hunts down and destroys these Nephilim as they pose a threat to the Nephilim community at large.
Nephilim do have a number of Stunts they can spend their Refresh on: circles of Magic, spells inscribed on their souls, and special Arcanum tricks. First, and foremost, though, is a conversation about the Refresh costs for magic and what buying those will get a character. The next series of posts will talk exclusively about purchasing magic and casting spells.
All Stunt costs for all Stunts available to the Nephilim. All costs subtract from the base Refresh cost of 10. Nephilim with less than 1 Refresh after buying Stunts are considered in a permanent state of Khaiba.
|-1||Casual Magic||First Circle Sorcery|
|-2||Ritual Magic||Second Circle Sorcery|
|-4||Grand Secret||Third Circle Sorcery|
|-2||Seals||First Circle Summoning|
|-3||Pentacles||Second Circle Summoning|
|-5||Keys||Third Circle Summoning|
|-3||Black Stone||First Circle Alchemy|
|-4||White Stone||Second Circle Alchemy|
|Infinity||Philosopher’s Stone||Third Circle Alchemy (not available to PCs)|
|-1||Inscribed Spell||Spell tattooed on Nephilim’s soul. May be taken multiple times.|
|-1||Personal Focus||Magical Focus. May be taken up to 3 times (for -3).|
|-1||Fool’s Initiate||Detects any Incarnation of a Nephilim into a new Simulacrum for 100 miles around him instantly.|
|-1||Magician’s Initiate||Receives an automatic +1 shift to overcome Complexity for all spells.|
|-1||High Priestess’s Initiate||Astrally project and enter the Uat, or astral plane.|
|-1||Empress’s Initiate||Free shift to all Empathy rolls when dealing with humanity|
|-1||Emperor’s Initiate||Receive an automatic +1 shift in all Presence rolls in contests against humans.|
|-1||The Hierophant’s Initiate||Can generate an additional situational Aspect where the Nephilim is worshipped by humans as a God.|
|-1||The Lover’s Initiate||Receive a free +1 shift in any skill involved in tactile feeling, the flesh and dealing with humans in a purely physical way.|
|-1||Chariot’s Initiate||Receives a free +1 shift in dealing with any machines, known or unknown.|
|-1||Strength’s Initiate||1 more Khaiba track boxes than normal Nephilim with the same number of Metamorphosis.|
|-1||Hermit’s Initiate||Can ignore its Simulacrum’s base needs for the duration of a scene, allowing a +1 shift in Discipline for the duration.|
|-1||Wheel of Fortunte’s Initiate||Allows a free shift when replacing Mystic Perception (Lore) with Alertness when divining a truth out of a random pattern. May be used to tag an Aspect on a Scene or location on a successful roll.|
|-1||Justice’s Initate||Free shift on any skill involved in the law or attaining Balance in the universe.|
|-1||Hanged Man’s Initiate||Impossible to recognize in Ka-Vision, or by any other magickal detection, while in Shouit.|
|-1||Temperance’s Initiate||May remove a box of Khaiba from a patient, including themselves.|
|-1||Devil’s Initiate||Receives one free shift during Intimidation rolls.|
|-1||Devil’s Initiate||Gains one free physical Aspect related to a physical part of Metamorphosis while in Khaiba.|
|-1||Sun’s Initiate||A single spell receives one extra shift of success per Scene.|
|-1||Moon’s Initiate||Can communicate with any animal in its “native tongue.”|
|-1||Star’s Initiate||Can be understood in any human language.|
|-1||Tower’s Initiate||Detects any spell cast by a human using an Elixer, Sacrifice or a stolen Athanor and causes it to rebound back on that human.|
|-1||Judgment’s Initiate||Can tag a single Aspect on to a Scene to reflect a pessimistic and dire vision of the future.|