Friday, 2 August 2019

Dementia: Katochic

Previously we looked at the Resolve mechanic, the Delirium & Dementia table and the Choleric dementia.

Now we're going to look at:

Katochic Dementia:

As I said before Katochic comes from the (ancient) Greek words Kato ("Underworld") and Chic ("In the fashion of..."). Thus it means "In the fashion of the underworld". It is thus synonymous with possession and outside influences. Katochic dementia thus appear to be forms of possession, external influences, or interactions with supernatural forces, raising the question whether a character is truly suffering from dementia at all.

Please keep in mind that these tables are still works in progress. I intend to give every entry a system based effect but they're not all there (b-dum-tish) yet. That's also not something everyone finds desirable. But as always YMMV.

Roll 1d6:

  1. Haunted: The afflicted sees dead people. Sometimes even when they aren't there.
  2. Infestation: The afflicted believes that they have become infested with parasites; fleas, worms, bugs; what-have-yous.
  3. Minsc's Companion: The afflicted believes that one of their items, or in some cases a pet, is not only animate but intelligent and communicating with them.
  4. Shadow Touched: The afflicted hear voices whispering dark secrets to them, criticisms of their actions and appeals to harm those around them. It is almost as if the evil of the last dungeon has seeped into their minds. 
    The Dementia score manifests as a penalty when they’re trying to concentrate on tasks, spell casting and saving throws as the voices seem to seek to distract and dismay the afflicted. However if the afflicted heeds the voices and follows their advice they may instead gain their score as a bonus to research rolls. However the result of such advice are always tainted by evil and, while possibly accurate, easily misconstrued.
  5. Stark Hunger: The afflicted feels possessed by a malevolent spirit that gives them an unnatural hunger. They feel the urge to sate this insatiable hunger at any opportunity, prioritising it above other deeds. This is often distressing for the afflicted 
    At the start of every session the character rolls a save versus Madness against (10+Dementia score). If they succeed they resist the hunger. Otherwise the hunger becomes overpowering and the afflicted is drawn to act upon it. This urge does not abate until the hunger is sated. During this time half the Dementia score is a penalty to any action that is not towards appeasing the hunger. 
    If, by the end of the session, the hunger is not sated then the full Dementia score becomes a penalty to all downtime activities that don’t sate the hunger, until the hunger is sated. They will sate the hunger before the next session in which they play. How that plays out is between the player and GM. 
    If the hunger is sated in play the afflicted feels an overwhelming sense of completion, tempered in many cases by guilt. The afflicted gets a bonus to all activities for the rest of the session equal to half the Dementia score.
  6. Rider: The afflicted manifest an alternative persona that shares the body of afflicted but can be of a different class or even race. Sometimes these personas claim to be extensions of the afflicted, friends or relatives, sometimes the spirits of the deceased. Or even supernatural entities. Sometimes they express themselves at seemingly logical times, while at other times seemingly at random. The rider has full control of the body of the afflicted when they are manifest but have their own Intelligence, Wisdom and Charisma scores. As well as stamina, resolve, spirit and experience level. They begin play with a character level equal to their host’s minus the Dementia score, with a minimum of first level, and level up separately from their host. However because they share a body all wounds are shared. From the point of view of the rider it may be they who are being ridden. 
    If an active persona wishes to manifest an inactive persona then the inactive persona must succeed in a save versus Madness, with a penalty equal to the Dementia score, to resist. Otherwise they manifest against their will. Or they could just choose to manifest. 
    If an inactive persona wishes to manifest against the will of the active persona then it is the active persona that must make the save versus madness (with the same penalty) to resist them. 
    Inactive personas are considered to be resting when it comes to healing and spell memorisation.

Types of Stark Hunger:

Roll 1d6.
  1. Avarice: The afflicted hungers for gold and material wealth. They will sometimes go so far as to steal from their allies.
  2. Cannibalism: The afflicted hungers for the flesh and blood of their own kind. This includes all intelligent beings. They will feast on the fallen as well as kill to get their taste of flesh.
  3. Inebriation: The afflicted hungers for intoxicants, seeking to lose themselves in drink and drugs.
  4. Lust: The afflicted hungers for their own sexual release. They often have no concern for the desires or pleasure of their partners. This isn’t just lust for lust’s sake but lust regardless of the consequences. It’s not tied to their sexual preferences or ideals, or orientation. It’s a compulsion. No redlight district can be passed without sampling. No “interesting” monsters or beasts can go unmolested. They will seduce rather than fight. Fuck rather than negotiate. They need not even enjoy themself. They just wanna. 
    (Please consider the comfort of the other players and GM when roleplaying scenes involving this dementia.)
  5. Murder: The afflicted hungers to take the lives of other intelligent beings. This is not the death of any intelligent being, slaying one's enemies in self defence is not murder. 
    The afflicted will often ritualise their slayings to mark them as special or different. At the same time they’re not stupid and will attempt to cover their involvement in any ‘extracurricular’ killings if it will cause them trouble.
  6. Perversion: The afflicted hungers for deviant activities and company. This is not “all of the above”. The afflicted does not seek wealth for its own sake but would find certain object-de-arte appealing. They don’t seek to consume the flesh of others but if presented with a juicy  “long pig” chop they would find it hard to resist. They don’t seek to drink themselves into oblivion but sample exotic narcotics and rare, perhaps unwholesome, liquor. They don’t seek sexual company to gratify themselves but wrap it in taboo, risk, or ritual and aberration, and they will feel the need to participate. They don’t desire to end the lives of others but bind a maiden to an altar of a dark god and hand them the knife. See the desire fill their eyes. 
    The afflicted will seek out the companionship of people with compatible tastes, feeling the desire to join secretive cults and clubs of like minded people where they can sate their perverse hungers.

Types of Rider.

Roll 1d3:
  1. Avid Rider: The avid rider acts in their own best interest and has a [neutral/selfish] alignment. This does not mean that they are unsympathetic to their host and their colleagues; the rider may just believe that they have a better grasp of what those interests are. The rider will only try and take over their host’s body if it suits their interests or if they think that the persona currently in control is putting them at some risk.
  2. Kind Rider: The kind rider acts in the best interest of their host and their comrades, having a [good] alignment. The kind rider won’t, as a rule, attempt to take control unless the persona currently in control is acting in a manner contrary to the rider’s alignment. Or unless the active persona is incapacitated by Delirium or something similar.
  3. Vile Rider: The vile rider actively acts against the best interests of their host and their comrades, having an [evil] alignment. This doesn’t have to mean that they’re self destructive; indeed they may seek a way of permanently usurping control of their host body. The vile rider will attempt to take control at any opportunity. Provoking the active persona to make saves versus Madness to lower their Resolve at the most inopportune times and make it easier for the vile rider to assume control.
Next time we'll go through melancholic and phlegmatic dementia.

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