illpower gives a character the extra strength to overcome obstacles and to succeed where others would surrender and fail. Each character begins the game with a number of Willpower Traits. These Willpower Traits can be used for almost anything that the player deems important (and that a Narrator deems acceptable). For example:- Willpower can be used to power certain Arcanoi.Once a Willpower Trait has been used, it is gone until the end of the story. At this time, the character regains all Willpower used during the course of the story.
- Willpower Traits can be expended to block or resist the actions of the Shadow.
- A Willpower Trait can be spent to modify a single aspect of a Harrowing.
- Willpower allows a character to replenish all lost Traits in any one category: Physical, Social or Mental.
- A Willpower Trait can be expended to negate the effects of any one Mental or Social challenge.
During the course of many stories, you are inevitably going to be drawn into a challenge in which several people want to be involved. Multi-party challenges can be confusing, but if you follow these simple guidelines, you shouldn’t have much difficulty. These rules are most useful in combat situations, but they can be used with nearly any sort of group challenge.
The first thing you need to do is decide who is challenging whom. This is usually obvious, but when it’s not, you need a quick way to work things out. Simply have everyone involved count to three at the same time. On three, each player points to the individual he is challenging.
The first challenge that must be resolved involves the person who has the most people pointing at him. Determine what the appropriate category of Traits would be – Physical, Social or Mental. Each player pointing at the defender must bid one appropriate Trait. The group must also choose a leader. The defender must bid as many Traits as there are people opposing him. If he does not have enough Traits to do so, he automatically loses the challenge. If he does have enough Traits, a test is performed between the defender and the chosen leader of the attackers. The rest of the challenge continues as normal, although any comparison of Traits or overbidding may only be done by the group leader.
If the defender wins the test, he is unharmed, but he can choose to affect one member of the attacking group. Usually, as in the case of a combat, this would mean inflicting one wound. Additionally, all the Traits bid by the attackers are lost. If the attackers win, they may inflict one wound, and the defender loses all the Traits he had risked.
After the first challenge is concluded, go on to the next one. Continue the process until each character that has declared an action has been the target of a challenge or has donated Traits.
Order of Challenges
Some people question exactly what a player can respond with when he has been challenged. Typically, if someone initiates a Physical Challenge, the defender can only respond with Physical Traits, unless he possesses an Arcanos or some other ability, which is considered to be always active. He cannot respond with the use of Arcanoi that are not active or another Ability until after the first challenge has been completed. Social and Mental challenges work the same way.