Do you reveal who the Vaylen are?

So, starting a Usurpation game this Saturday, which is a continuation of the Infiltration game we already did. As such, we’ve established that the Vaylen are now on the world (I won!).

Question is - should I reveal who the Vaylen are, now, amongst the FoNs or important characters? Or now? My plan was just to do a color scene or so with the reveal, but I was wondering, metagame-wise, do you reveal who they are? Last campaign, I sent out a sheet with all the Beliefs of the Human and “Vaylen” side. I want to do that again, but some of the Beliefs are very “Vaylen”-y. So, advice? Ought I tip my hand about who is actually Vaylen? Or what?

(I realize this is a character knowledge versus player knowledge thing. Naturally, the characters won’t know - but should the players know at the beginning, or do you keep surprise and tension by not revealing just who yet is Vaylen and who isn’t?)

The players should know all of this stuff

Yes, tell them. It’s (on the whole) more fun to have the players know what’s going on than it is to have a big table secret. It does lessen the impact of the reveal somewhat, but the reveal isn’t the exciting part when you think about it.

Also, it means you can have your GMFON’s beliefs out on the table and you can then earn artha for them (no fair awarding yourself artha blindly).

Hah, I’m going to go against prevailing sentiment.

I say: sometimes.

I would also be on the sometimes side. I might even ask the players what they think.

As a player sometimes I want one, sometimes I want the other. Sometimes it’s nice to now and just feel the tension when you’re in the same scene as one. On the other hand, not knowing and questioning everyone is also valid and can be a lot of fun.

As a player, I like knowing about the FON. I also like not knowing about anyone else.

Hmm…think I’ll just lay it all out there, see what happens. I’ve been open about everything else in play; might as well here too, I guess.

Thanks all. Probably report back tomorrow since I’ve got three people new to the system in the game (and one guy totally new to gaming!).

Revealing is more fun than telling. Your instinct to use a color scene is exactly right, IMO. Which means you shouldn’t do it until the moment is right. I’d save it for the beat after (for instance) he makes a big promise that even a human who hated your guts and wanted something different for the world would keep. Then you show them the worm, and they know they’re doomed.

Don’t be a dick with your secret, though. Don’t save it for the beat after he betrays that big promise. You lose all the tension that way.