Election for Sabbat Coordinator

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Proposal Type: Coordinator Elections (Full Term)
Opened: 26-Nov-2001 1:00AM EST
Closing: 03-Dec-2001 1:00AM EST


Applicant Name: Anton AdamApplicant Email: blackcat@northwestern.edu
Applicant Home Chronicle: Chicago
Support From:
RUcoord
Ventrue

Background:

There's no good place to wedge this in, so I'll just paste it here. This is a
little foreward to my Application that Loopy wrote for me.

"I have worked with Toni Adam for a number of years in our local independant
game and for the past 10 months as my subcoordinator. He's an excellent
administrator and a strong leader, but it is his understanding of the genre
that motivates me to put my recommendation forth. He has an excellent grasp
of the dark and gritty emotional story behind the game we play, and has
excelled at bringing that story to the forefront of larp. His emphasis of
plot over rules proves to me that he's got the right mindset for this
position, and I support him wholeheartedly.

Jen "Loopy" Smith
R&U Coordinator"

Right. On to the official stuff.

Larp and OWBN experience:
I have been Larping for several years now. My first game was the
Northwestern university student game, an independant game which runs one-year
long chronicles. Besides being a player in this game, I have been assistant
storyteller for one chronicle and head storyteller for another. In addition, I
have served OWBN as Kuei-jin subcord, under the Wraith and R+U coordinators. In
this position I crafted and revised the LA/West Coast proposal which is even now
as I write this up for vote. I also am a current player in Chicago: Dark
Requiem. The philosophy of Larp that I have developed, both from my home game
and in playing or visiting several OWBN larps (as player or NPC) is that for a
larp to work well the authority of the stortellers must be respected absolutely.
It doesn't matter what you think the rulebook says about a situation, it is
what the storyteller says that matters. I have too often heard a player tell a
storteller "That's not how it works"....If a storyteller has said so, that IS,
in fact, how it works. If you disagree, you can feel free to go home and get
one of Your buddies to run a Rifts game so you can Shout "Fwakoom!!" and "But 4
missiles always hits!" to your hearts content. In a larp, the storyteller
represents the impersonal force of reality, and must work very hard to ensure
the the game world does not fall apart from the force of 30 different people
working at cross purposes. He doesn't need you qouting rules at him.
By the same token, OWBN has a great degree of inter-game plot. Just as
Storytellers need to be on top of everthing going on in their own game,
Coordinators were created to ensure that there is some degree of continuity
exists from game to game. To me, Coordinators exist so that there will be a
cohesive game world for individual game to reside in, kind of like a diadem in
which are set numerous distinct jewels. (oh god I need sleep. I'm starting to
sound like a WW text writer)
Now, a question arises quite often- where does the power of the
co-ordinator end and that of the storyteller begin. The principle that I try to
focus on is this: Within their game, a storyteller is god. if a co-ordinator
visits as an NPC it is to accomplish a specific goal, to further the plot that
the storyteller is developing. NPC activity must rest on a firm bed of
cooperation between the co-ordinator and the NPC, and the thought on the mind of
the person plaing said NPC should be "is this what the storteller brought me
here to do?" In the instances in which I have played NPC's, both assisting the
Toreador coordinator and as Kuei-jin subcord, I think I have lived up to this
principle, and it has led to some very satisfying games all around. However, by
the same token, when a player decides to leave the confines of their own game,
and even the confines of any specific game, by doing something extraordinarily
stupid like, say, going to visit a justicar (no vampire should desire the
attention of their elders-because elders are both powerful and- quite often-
batshit loony), they have entered a domain in which the arbiter of reality is in
fact the coordinator. For them to return to their storyteller and attempt to
get them to overturn the results of such an event is no better than to attempt
to play storytellers in neighboring games against each other.
So yeah, that's where I stand on that. I'm all for clearly defined
areas of authority and respect for the authority of others when you aren't the
one calling the shots.

Other qualifications---I was an Assistant Senior Patrol Leader in my boy scout
troop, (which translates into a love of the concept of chain-of-command and the
ability to get a whole bunch of idiots all lined up and marching in the same
[questionably appropriate] direction), and I'm a third year Theatre student
(currently taking a year off). And I'm familiar with every World of darkness
game, even the ones no one reads like Kindred of the East.

Personal Statement:

Alright, here's the important part. I want all of you to get out your copies of
Vampire 2nd Ed. the tabletop book, because ultimately larp is a flawed
translation of a brilliant game. flip through the book, ignoring all the rules,
all the dots and dice, even all the examples of play. just look at the
pictures. what do you see? Is it the brooding atmosphere, the defiance in the
face of a hopeless situation, and the downright spookiness that attracted you to
Vampire in the first place? I hope so. Now, you want to know what the
differences are between those illustrations and the ones in V3? mostly, it's
that the new illustrations are meant to illustrate kewl powers or examples of X,
while the old ones were just meant to evoke a mood. Maybe everyone at whitewolf
assumes that we've all got the mood down by now, and they want to move on to
other things. I think they're wrong, and that we need to constantly remind
ourselves that the world we're playing in is one where the more powers you have,
the more likely you are to get yourself in trouble, the more powerful someone is
the less likely they are to be on anyone's side, No matter how cool you get
there's always someone able and willing to take you down-or worse, use you, and
ultimately, your character will lose. No matter how you slice it, vampire is
meant to be a game of what happens as you fall down, fall apart, or just plain
fall. If you think you're getting ahead, you're only increasing the size of
your tumble for later. Every aspect of the game needs to be brought back to
that ideal, especially in Larp. And in the Larp Sabbat no less than anywhere
else.
Let's look at the sabbat in tabletop. Why do they scare the elders?
Because they come with strength of numbers to eat you. They cannot be swayed
and cannot be played against each other. Why do they scare the ancillae?
Because they have been taught to fear them, and many of them have lost friends
defending their cities (i.e. their elders) against the Sabbat. And, more than
anything else, the Sabbat represent a wholehearted rejection of the entire
system that an ancillae has devoted their unlives to working within to get
ahead. Why do neonates fear the Sabbat? Simple. Neonates fear everything,
because everything is bigger than them, especially packs of psychopaths who kill
first and play with the corpses later.
Note that no where in my list is the phrase "because they convert
members of the city to their cause like a cancer". That's because, in tabletop,
they don't. In all the Vampire I've read, I have read of conversions only
twice. Once was in Chicago by Night Second Ed. The sabbat kidnapped Lodin's son
and converted him over a process of months. The other one was in some bad world
of darkness short story I read. It involved tremere antitrib and all kinds of
wacky. In tabletop, the sabbat considers everyone who is not a member their
mortal enemy, worthy of death at best. Certainly not ripe grounds for
recruiting. The idea of sabbat members hitting existing vampires on the back of
the head with a shovel and magically turning them into card-carrying members of
the jihad against the ancients comes from a badly worded description of the
creation rites in Masquerade first edition. If I become Sabbat Coordinator, I
would make it my first job to eliminate conversion, both out of character (by,
well, asking ST's to just not allow it to work) and in character, by having the
Regent issue an edict against the practice. This would have, hopefully, two
main effects on the way the Sabbat functions in game.
1. Hopefully, Storytellers would be more willing to allow Sabbat infiltrator
characters in Camarilla only games. Without the risk that one sabbat character
will slowly convert everyone else until the storyteller is left with the choice
of converting his game to an all-sabbat one or pulling an artless Deus ex
Machina to save the camarilla, ST's will be able to make sabbat spy characters a
part of their chronicle. In addition, as these spy characters are discovered
periodically, they will help encourage the air of Paranoia that should pervade a
vampire game.
2.With the Cam-Sabbat interaction shifted from conversion to attempted murder,
more of an us-versus-them atmosphere will be created. We as players have come
to be able to see both sides of the Jyhad as equally valid. Unfortunately, do
to the high degree of nonviolent interaction necessitated by conversion and the
distressing frequency with which characters tend to jump back and forth, many
characters have become nearly as ambivilent. While an exploration of the moral
relativity between the sects can make a great storyline, a baseline of violent
antagonism needs to be re-established first.

What else needs to be done? Sabbat storylines In Cam games need to make
the sabbat seem a more credible threat. Part of this could be accomplished with
IC sabbat infiltrators making reports to the nearest Archbishop, who could then
send in targeted packs of NPC's in camarilla games which could use tactics more
advanced than "roll into elysium and kill everything that moves". Ideally, if a
game could be found whose ST's wanted to switch their game over, a plotline
could be organised that would see a city actually fall to the sabbat- many PC's
have gotten used to the idea that no matter what happens, the sabbat can't
really take over permanently. I'd love to help write a plotline that challenges
that assumption. As for the existing Sabbat games, I plan to-well- help the
Storytellers with whatever plots they think are important. If possible, I'd
like to visit each game to get a feel for their situation. If the storytellers
are amenable, I'd like to kick off a renewed push in the Jyhad, which would also
be expressed in the increased activity in Cam games (again, in games whose ST's
want to go that route.)
The final question question I have considered is what can be done about
the low number of Sabbat games in OWBN. Ultimately, I think this is not as
large a concern as it first appears. The sabbat were created originally as a
foil to the Camarilla, and playing them should be an exercise in seeing "how the
other side lives." In addition, due to the large amount of visiting other games
that owbn players tend to do, players of sabbat characters are left with the
choice of not taking part or playing two seperate characters which are deadly
enemies to each other. Ultimately, OWBN would be better served by having
perhaps a few more sabbat games, spread out in each region. That way, the
opportunity would exist for people who truly want to explore unlife as a sabbat
character long term, or for players who want to take a break from life as a good
little pawn. Were Sabbat games to proliferate overmuch the sect would lose its
sense of mystery and danger, becoming like the Camarilla only with more
flamethrowers. That said, I would love the opportunity to help a game or to
switch over, or help an ST team that thought they had enough support in their
area to get a new game rolling.

In conclusion, I'd like to work to keep vampire scary, and the Sabbat
doubly so.(gimme a break, i'm writing this at 7:30 AM, I have work at 10, and I
haven't gotten any sleep since sometime friday night.
-Toni Adam

-------------------------------------------------------

Applicant Name: Gabriel K. Balmes
Applicant Email: thanatopis@hotmail.com
Applicant Home Chronicle: Millegdevill
Support From:
Sabbat

Background:

My father was a gamer, and I have been playing role-playing games since GENCON
was held at a college campus - I think UW, Parkside... (for you non-midwesters,
that was a long time ago.) I have been acting as an ST for Table Top for 15
years, and have played many systems. I started playing Vampire tabletop in 1991
when a friend introduced me to it.

I joined the OWbN in Kenosha's Eternal Aria. I was based in that chronicle
until I moved to Georgia and established The Habit of Being chronicle for entry
into the OWbN. I have been HST/CM every since.

While in Kenosha, I served as Rules Coordinator starting just before Jim
McGarity stepped down and for five months under Matt Bock. During this time, I
was charged with evaluating the various rules that were being used to help
better conform to genre, the needs of the chronicle, and to clean up a lot of
broken rules. It was finished just before I left to Georgia, but I do not
think it was ever adopted, so I'm not sure it counts for anything. I did use
it as the basis for the Georgia Game's rules, though, and we are still playing
by them with the third edition conversions in place.

I had played some Sabbat NPCs and a long lived Sabbat PC both in Kenosha and
Georgia.

Currently, I am the Southern States Sabbat Advisor to Vered, and she has given
me her full support for this position based on our interactions over the last
year.

I have also been the founder and HST of a short lived Camarilla Fan Club game,
the Narrator for an independent LARP, HST of a Dark Ages LARP, played Sabbat
PCs in other independent LARPs, served as Tremere SubCoord for the OWbN under
Lance Larson, and have played in many OWbN chronicles.

While serving as Tremere SubCoord, I was able to communicate with the Brazil
chronicles at a comfortable level, which I would like to return to being able
to help with for the Sabbat. I have a strong interest in the involvement in
our chronicles outside of the US, and would like to cultivate a stronger
relationship with them in this position and hopefully the organization as a
whole.

Personal Statement:

The Georgia Game is Sabbat heavy with NPCs and requires a firm understanding of
the sect on many levels to create a full setting for our chronicle. I deal
with the politics and play from pack to priscus level as an ST. I also ran two
Sabbat Wild Card games last Spring to playtest many Ritae concepts and Sabbat
game ideas. I run the sect, in GA, as a living setting as opposed to a monster-
of-the-week type antagonist, which allows for numerous levels of play in the
Jyhad in the Southeast.

I have eight years experience in management and administrative positions and
have earned high marks and promotions in each job. I also have military
experience where I received high honors and served as a enlisted representative
to foreign nations (Korea). This experience has earned me an experienced
approach to dealing with protocol, bureaucracy, politics, and profitable
relations. I have also worked as mediator and impartial judge for numerous
conflicts on both a professional and personal level.

Currently, I run an approach to our game that includes an educational
forum/workshop that we try to have before every game. My approach as an ST is
to educate the players into finding a better way to play rather than just
setting up rigid guidelines. I believe that finding ways to encourage a better
system by truly showing its merit often works better that forcing one, and I
have had much success with this approach in the GA game.

I would like to offer myself as a resource to STs for Sabbat concepts,
playability, inter-chronicle assistance and education on ways that have proven
to work for other games. This will help facilitate the growth of a stronger
gaming community within a particular chronicle

File / Document: No file attachments for this vote.
Ballot Options
Reject
Gabriel
Matt
Anton
Abstain
Jason