Hanging it all Out

Werewolf: The Apocalypse

Last night we had a three-hour Hangout with myself and the Book of the Wyrm consulting developers. We talked about a whole lot of things, from mechanics of corruption to the Wyrm getting in to payday lending and the return of Günter Häagen•Däaz, the Man With Too Many Umlauts. And at this point, you guys should really have a chance to look at the outline to get an idea of what we might have been talking about.

I’m now going to compile the notes from our discussion into the redlines that go out to each writer. Good news for all of them: the first drafts are all really good, and I’m sure the finals will be even better.

Once that’s done, I need to check the edits on both Book of Changing Breeds and RAGE Across the World, then get on down to writing an outline for the White Howlers Tribebook. In that neat way projects have of linking up, some of the ideas for the White Howlers have come out of John Mørke’s Black Spiral Dancers draft for Book of the Wyrm. I love it when a plan comes together.

I’m aware that I’m now talking about books that are three and four down the line, and Changing Breeds hasn’t yet seen the light of day. It’s getting a very thorough edit, and that’s no small task. If you recall the outline, we had the whole book being 90,000 words. The chapter on the Changing Breeds themselves is at 95,000 words. It’s going to be impressively meaty.

  44 comments for “Hanging it all Out

  1. Ana Mizuki
    January 15, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    I hate for the first comment to be critical, but this is -exactly- the same book as Book of the Wyrm 2nd ed. And that book still works just fine in revised and in W20, it doesn’t need to be redone.

    Not to mention, there is a lot more Wyrmy stuff to showcase with than is found in the 2nd ed book. Book of the Wyrm MET, while a LARP book, has a lot more information on BSDs and corrupted factions of each of the Fera, not just the Buzzards. Especially those different shapeshifters would be a great addition to the 20th ed book of the Wyrm, to tie in with the 20th CB book.

    Sorry for being so negative about this.

    • Stew
      January 15, 2013 at 6:54 pm

      The structure’s very close to the 2nd ed Book o the Wyrm. The content is significantly different because we couldn’t get away with selling the same book twice. Our writers have drawn from both the 1e, 2e, and MET Books of the Wyrm to craft something new and worthwhile.

      • Ana Mizuki
        January 16, 2013 at 3:17 am

        All right.

        That was what I was most worried about, so it is good to hear that it won’t be just a retread.

  2. LemuneSD
    January 15, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    Sorry, Mizuki, but I have to disagree. The amount of reality that has changed in the 14 years since Wyrm 2nd ed is progress in leaps and bounds. Society has changed considerably in that time, technology has increased dramatically (I have friends who honestly didn’t know what dial-up was), the world has effectively become connected world wide and accessible from your phone, easy prey for Tellus to defile our modern youth.

    Obviously the book would be retreading familiar territory, and will probably rehash old stories and information found in the sources you mentioned. But what has the Wyrm been up to in all this time? Never idle, the forces of corruption have undoubtedly advanced and evolved with the times. How has Pentex fared in the political and social fields? Was Endron involved in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico spill? Does Magadon have anything to do with stem cell research and the like? How about Avalon, regarding current conflicts or the abuse of the 2nd Amendment in recent times? Does the destruction of hopes and dreams, such as shutting down of Nasa’s space exploration, have any impact on the Umbral realms?

    The staggering amount of conspiracy possibilities, along with the intended much darker nature of the BSDs could be amazing…Conflict is key and the opposition needs defining. The times are dark and Garou are fighting for more than just self survival. This is an area of information that can never get too much coverage.

    What I would personally love to see is information and stories that can’t make the cut or simply ones that develop afterwords, become available through downloadable module PDFs and such.

    • Ana Mizuki
      January 15, 2013 at 5:08 pm

      The world has changed, yes. But outside Pentex and mortal servant chapters, the chapters look all to farmiliar.

      I guess what I am saying is, that it would be great is the book dealt with different aspects of the Wyrm than found in the 2nd ed book. And focus on different sides of those farmiliar for us.

      • Yiodan
        January 16, 2013 at 12:01 am

        If I may, interject. I honestly think you are both right. Quite honestly, I feel that update is needed. Not only did the world change, I also think Mr. Wilson’s vision is giving these subjects the face lift they needed.

        But, at the same time, I think we’ve really been there and we need to explore new grounds.

        I’m going to be quite heretical here, but, seriously… couldn’t we break this down into 2 books? I’m serious. Book of the Wyrm Part 1, and Book of the Wyrm part 2. It’s too late, surely, but I think it’s worth suggesting at least.

        Part One could be the update the setting needs. Pentex, BSDs, Fomori. Stuff we already know, but need to revisit and update.

        And then, part 2, could be everthing we really didn’t explore enough or at all. The fallen breeds could quite seriously have a huge section all of themselves. Mizuki is right. There’s so much we don’t know about them. Likewise, Mr. Wilson couldn’t be more right in saying that Wyrm Cults NEED to be covered. It’s never covered and you have no IDEA how much mileage I got out of them. It’s such a vast topic it could have it’s own book. For now, I base myself entirely on Chronicle of the Black Labyrinth when creating Wyrm Cults, but there’s so much more to be said.

        Then part 2 could move on to cover a ton of new ideas and concepts. Stuff we never spoke about. New monsters, new banes, new “things” that can barely be named. Why not also cover wyrm taint when it affects the other supernaturals? Mages who sold their souls to the Wyrm, how does it affect their magicks? Vampires who didn’t want to be found as infernalists, but thought the Wyrm might do the trick? Changelings, who found a way to fight banality by making people beleive in the dark evil thing that lurks in the night thanks to his new friendly voices that speak in his head.

        I’d buy the hell out of both of those books.

    • Alta
      January 25, 2013 at 3:39 pm

      NASA? Isn’t NASA the Void Engineers? My understanding is that “outer space” is really the Aetherial Realm where Garou can reach the Celestines… which means that the space program shutting down is a good thing, less Technocracy presence in that realm.

      • LemuneSD
        January 26, 2013 at 4:03 am

        It’s true that Void Engineers use Correspondence and Dimensional Science to explore the the Umbral realms, I don’t recall them ever actually being part of Nasa. Then again, I didn’t mess with them much yet. And yes, Garou use the Aetherial Realm to travel.

        However, the penumbra is affected by dreams/hopes/emotions of humans. Such a monumental loss of hope may create despair, which in turn is grounds for powerful Banes to breed. One enemy for another, as it were ^_^

      • Adamant Siaka
        January 27, 2013 at 8:29 pm

        No, space is space, and the Aetherial Realm is the Umbral reflection of it. Space as the Deep Umbra is something unique to Mage, which labels what the Garou call the Deep Umbra the High Umbra.

        • LemuneSD
          January 30, 2013 at 11:08 pm

          I never actually thought about that, either. So when the physical world and spiritual world which used to be one, according to the oWoD, were torn apart, it was on a universal scale? Or are there places beyond our planet that are still physically and spiritually intact, do you think? And either way, physical space can have impact on the spiritual reflection and vice versa, no?

          • Adamant Siaka
            January 31, 2013 at 11:49 pm

            It was universal. Though the Gauntlet in space is low, it still exists.

            I’d never considered the thought that an entire planet or other astronomical body might still be merged before. Upon further thought, it would probably run into problems when radio telescopes got pointed its way. Alternately, that could be one explanation for Anthelios messing things up.

      • Chris Shaffer
        February 5, 2013 at 6:05 am

        Outer Space is not the Deep Umbra. The Gauntlet is very thin there, so crossing over is easy. But they’re two separate things.

  3. January 15, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    I’ll step in and try to be a voice of reason.

    While I am a huge Werewolf fan and will pay my every penny to get all things Apocalypse, we really don’t need another book on Changing Breeds or the Wyrm. Rage Across the World will be a good update, and who’s going to say the White Howlers Tribe book isn’t needed?

    My opinion, axe the Changing Breeds and the Book of the Wyrm. Instead, create a new BOOK OF THE WEAVER.

    ’nuff said.

    • ShadowWolf
      January 19, 2013 at 10:06 pm

      Beat me to the punch on Book of the Weaver. LOL. That was a personal favorite of mine. A book on technology out of control, the Weaver’s role and detailing even the creation of man, it was an amazing book. They should do an update considering technology is becoming so advanced..

    • Chris Shaffer
      February 5, 2013 at 6:11 am

      With how the 20th Anniversary stuff is handling the metaplot, we really do need some of these new editions of stuff to marry the modern world we have with the story snippets of old. Trust me, I’d be all for a Book of the Weaver as well, and I can’t think of a good reason to assume there won’t be one at some point. It’s just a matter of priorities vs. how many books can be confirmed for the release schedule at the time. The Weaver is a major thing, probably moreso than ever. But the Wyrm’s servants have always been pretty clearly front and center as far as antagonists go.

  4. Laughing Hyena
    January 15, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Sorry, Soulhowler, you don’t represent every Apocalypse fan.
    I really want Changing Breeds since so little information on the Ahadi was given out the last time, plus any needed updates to the Ajaba (Since they were never given their own breed book).

    Book of the Wyrm is questionable, but if they can bring in anything new and interesting, I’ll still like to see it. I also won’t be surprised if either Book of the Weaver or Book of the Wyld 20th edition are announced further down the year. Or revealed as stretch goals for the three upcoming KS books.

  5. January 15, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    I did say ‘my opinion.’ And it is one I maintain 😛

    Changing Breeds and Book of the Wyrm are gonna get my money regardless. What can I say? I’m a completist…

    • LemuneSD
      January 15, 2013 at 10:19 pm

      I concur with ya on the point of the Weaver. That could be pretty interesting. However I still say that the Wyrm needs updating. What usually makes a story memorable instead of simply mediocre is more than just conflict. It is character development and atmosphere.

      While it is great to have something to fight, kill, and show how awesomely epic your character is. But for a story to really stick in memory there needs to be a solid reason behind the conflict. The best villains are the ones that have personality and motivation, not just because they are on the wrong side of the protagonist’s line. A book of the Wyrm and the Weaver imo will do an amazing job of fleshing out more than just who we fight, but the reasons why we fight

  6. Archcanni
    January 15, 2013 at 11:38 pm

    I myself look forward a new book of the wyrm its one of my favorite books in the world of darkness. So get to it! 🙂

  7. Yiodan
    January 15, 2013 at 11:44 pm

    First comment. Stew (can I call you so?) I really have to say this:

    You’re awesome. Regardless of what I can say of content (which I will do elsewhere), your voice in those outlines rings so viscerally true to the guts of those books. I don’t even have the book in my hands and yet I feel like going out there and fracking up the wyrm. I feel Garou, which is the gutsiest setting I know, is in the right hands.

    (Sadly, I killed my game yesterday, so, my days of DMing Garou are done for now. I’ll love your book, and pledge the heck out of them, but I probably won’t get to use them.)

  8. Yiodan
    January 16, 2013 at 12:04 am

    (Oh, I meant to say: My first comment, as in, before anythign else I might say, I needed to say this. I realize now it could have come out as obnoxious and dismissive of everything else that was said here by others, that was not at all my goal)

  9. Ana Mizuki
    January 16, 2013 at 3:24 am

    Another comment on the text, but the whole ‘show players BSDs are not to be played’ angle? It’s been done, it has never worked. The book will be rated R anyway, so I feel there is no need for ‘No, this is BAD, these guys are EVIL’ text boxes for the players. Most who play BSDs all ready know what they are getting into, and understand the implications. I feel introducing the tribe and letting STs and players choose themselves.

    Besides, this very blog gave pretty much a full splat text for the tribe all ready XD

    • Alta
      January 25, 2013 at 3:45 pm

      I’ve never known anyone to play BSDs before… this actually happens?

      That’s… alarming.

      • Yiodan
        January 27, 2013 at 2:11 pm

        No more than writing or watching Dexter. It’s about exploring different narratives for STs and rendering extremely complex psychological states for players. In no way is it about enjoying or reveling into what those characters do. It’s a roleplaying game, and I like a roleplay challenge. It’s why I love to play animal born so much.

        • Adamant Siaka
          January 27, 2013 at 8:31 pm

          As I understand it, Dexter has redeeming features. Dancers… don’t.

          • Yiodan
            January 28, 2013 at 5:46 pm

            I’m going to start by stating very clearly that I am not defending the dancers. What they do is horrible and wrong. And their vision is twisted and wrong.

            But playing them is no more wrong than playing any villains without redeeming values. Was it wrong to play Darth Vader in the first 2 movies before anyone knew he was anything but pure evil? Was it wrong to play Dracula in any of the various incarnation? Is it wrong to be the guy in the suit playing a Xenomorph in an Alien movies? No it’s not. And they are all interesting characters/monsters to portrait.

            The player is not the character. The character’s beliefs, thoughts, desires and morality are not the players’. Characters can be good or bad and they all bring something to the narratives of which they are part.

            Of course, if someone were to agree with his BSD character’s actions and motives, now THAT would be terribly, terribly wrong. And that person should seek professional help.

  10. ShadowWolf
    January 19, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    I cannot wait for the White Howlers book. If it’s any tribe that deserves a look, it’s them. Particular insights about what their life was like during the days of the Picts would be amazing. So far I am impressed with that.

    As far as the outline with BotW3, well as the adage goes, “If ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”. I think White Wolf is going the right direction with the book. New content and material but a familiar, a mix of old and new. I think it’s a match made in heaven as the phrase goes.

  11. Archermonkey
    January 20, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    Speaking as one of the consulting developers on the book, I’d like to second Stew’s comments. The general structure is the same, and while there is a definite overlap in content with previous versions (just like each of the previous version have had with each other) there isn’t a single chapter that doesn’t have something new and exciting to add to any game of Werewolf: the Apocalypse. My favourite so far is the chapter dealing with Malfeas. The material is very familiar, but the new pieces that John Snead has written open up whole new vistas for story. And just wait ’til you read the expanded history of the White Howlers, or see some of the more modern corporate malfeasance that is getting reflected in 2013’s snapshot of Pentex. The first drafts are just great, and I’m really excited to see what the writers come back with after the redlines help to refine it further.

    Really, the only thing that I disagree with Stew about here is Günter Häagen•Däaz, because you can never have too many umlauts.

    • Yiodan
      January 21, 2013 at 1:35 pm

      In fact, I can see several letters in there that still don’t have umlauts. 🙂

    • Ana Mizuki
      January 25, 2013 at 1:12 am

      All right.

      I apologise for leaping to a judgement before I knew better. I am glad you are taking the MET book in consideration too, because it has been one of the best sources of BSD information WW has ever put out. Ad it was sad that all that was ignored until someone brought atttention to it.

      I hope the editing goes well.

  12. blue fox
    January 21, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    And I can’t believe I haven’t notice this blog entry until now 😐

    Shame on me and kudos to Onyx path.

  13. Alta
    January 25, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    “A detailed treatment of fomori, touching on stuff from Possessed and Freak Legion. Spend about 10K on fomori alone, with sample breeds and some basic mechanics for playing fomori characters.”

    When you say “playing fomori characters”, you mean for STs to depict antagonists, right?

    • Yiodan
      January 25, 2013 at 9:13 pm

      Not nesessarily. Fomori have been playable PC characters since the book “Freak Legion” came out.

  14. Corax
    January 27, 2013 at 4:20 am

    I have not heard of the Werewolf 20th anniversary project until today.

    Is it actually available somewhere? I have looked once I discovered it and only found the old kickstarter page.

    I think if I were to revisit the Werewolf setting of Old World of Darkness, then I would definitely want to see a Player’s Guide to the Changing Breeds as a companion. The books of the Weaver and Wyrm can probably be compiled into one biblica along with expanded notes on the Wyld. The book of Auspices is a great companion to consider, but I feel that it was mostly a ton of extra gifts without much other real flavor. I could see the better parts of that used as The Chapter of Auspices in the core book personally.

    I have been a player of the Mind’s Eye Theatre books for a long time, so I would ask that if there were no direct plans to reprint those, then maybe to print some context about how to utilize material in the 20th anniversary as Live Action rules.

    As a storyteller and writer I enjoy the whole system, but we have to work hard to integrate pieces from one setting to another even though they seem to be willing to put the basic idea in the core book.

    • Torakhan
      January 30, 2013 at 5:29 pm

      1) W20: The KickStarter for the Deluxe Edition is over. The only way you’ll be able to buy one is in the secondary market when it’s been shipped.
      HOWEVER, the PDF and versions of the Print-on-Demand WILL be available in the near future for purchase at http://www.DriveThruRPG.com. There is no official release date (either to KickStarter funders, or to the general public), but keep an eye on the white wolf forums and Onyx Path web site for more info as it happens.

      2) MET: Old versions of the MET books are available both as PDFs and Print-on-Demand at DriveThruRPG. The ones I’ve seen (in person) look great. (Note: It is their intention to put the ENTIRE White-Wolf catalog in PDF/PoD in time, but… it’s going to be a while as it’s a LOT of books to convert/produce.)
      The Mind’s Eye Theater rules were recently licensed by another company (By Night Studios) who will be putting out a new version of “Laws of the Night” soon. http://www.facebook.com/ByNightStudios

  15. January 27, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    As far as getting a copy of W20, you’ll need to go to DriveThuRPG once the actual book is published. At that time, you’d be able to get a Print on Demand copy.

  16. Zylo-Kills-The-Foe
    February 1, 2013 at 5:14 am

    I think it’s long past due for me to open my big mouth again.

    I too have concerns about this book being “Book of the Wyrm 2: Part 2: Electric Bugaloo” also but I have a more specific concern to talk about right now…

    Black Dog.

    Can we not this time? I mean yes, we all get the joke and it’s good to laugh at ourselves and make light and all. My problem here isn’t so much with Black Dog itself, but with the limited page space. The time that might be spent on Black Dog (a Pentex sub with, honestly, very little utility) could be better spent on something like O’Tolly, Avalon or any number of the more threatening or perhaps world encompassing parts of the dreaded Pentex.

    So again, I’m asking…Pretty please, with sugar atop.

    No Black Dog this time?

  17. February 2, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    Black Dog is a tradition, snark to gamers, from gamers, and it has a long reaching humour that new next gen of Werewolf players should be forced to endure as well.

    But yeah, I’d like to see more on Magadon, Inc. myself…

    • Zylo-Kills-The-Foe
      February 8, 2013 at 7:37 pm

      And if we were hip deep in 4th edition, if I could still take a quick drive down to Avalon Games or Ryders Hobby and walk up to the White Wolf section, I wouldn’t say a word. I don’t think it deserves more than a small aside at the absolute most. We have to separate the stuff from the stuff now.

      We all get the joke, we know the joke, new gamers can read the old books and get the joke too.

      Then again I’d like to hear a little less of Pentex this time around anyway. I’m not saying “no Pentex” mind you, just that making a chapter with 15k words on Pentes and 5k on what amounts to “etc” doesn’t thrill me, maybe ten thousand each?

  18. Adamant Siaka
    February 2, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    I suspect that there will be no Black Dog Game Factory producing games in the WoD. After all, since the people at WW are in Onyx Path Productions now, they’ll have to take a new name, right? (^VVVVVVV^)

    Plus, there’s an entire new generation to roast, and new concepts to send up humorously. Like a giant playtest of Labyrinths & Lamiae Subsequent, for example.

    • Zylo-Kills-The-Foe
      February 8, 2013 at 7:28 pm

      But do we really NEED to roast them?

      We have limited page space and the days of heading to the local gaming store and buying the new book(s) that come out in a couple weeks are gone.

      I mean if they’re going to do it, make it a little blurb, I’m worried it’s going to get the sort of attention it got in Subsidiaries. There are bigger and better subsidiaries out there and I don’t think we should be wasting any real amount of page space on an old joke.

    • IanW
      February 11, 2013 at 10:53 pm

      White Wolf is still a thing. That’s why the WW logo still appears on books.

  19. Richard Caste
    February 13, 2013 at 6:47 am

    I would like playable BSDs too please.

  20. Tetsuo
    March 25, 2013 at 10:57 pm


    Are the Grondr another Black Spiral Dancer corrupted Changing breed or have they become just another monster.

    BTW, never heard of the Grondr, how did they get corruptedÉ

    Will the Camazotz(werebats) be appearing here.

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