Song of the Elday/Astrology

How are people justifying FoRKs, linked tests with Astro/Song of the Eldar for things like Stealthy, Forest-wise, Song of Soothing, etc. My player and I are sitting around discussing the ways to do this in the game fiction for his Elven ranger who has Song of the Eldar. He’s deciding whether or not to keep it. What about even Read/Write, Elven Script? Some are obvious such as Farming, Animal Husbandry but others . . .?

Without meaning to be flippant, I think a fair justification for Song of the Eldar is “its a Elf thing, you wouldn’t understand” :slight_smile:

Stealthy: " Orion the Hunter is in Ascendancy tonight, May he smile upon us!"
Forest-Wise: “Starlight soothes the tree-spirits, and they whisper their secrets in the dark. maybe I can tempt them to whisper to me”
Read/Write/Script: “While I honour the Star-Children with my sonnets, they will guide my quill”
Song Of Soothing: " My verse is not wasted, youngling! See, the clouds break and Chiron shine her light upon the afflicted! Now I must guide it to the source of injury!"
e.g. blag some mystical Fey cause.

Astrology would be termed more with “Omens predict a good time for <intended PC action>”, “It is a Fortuitous time …”, “With Scorpio rising, <PC Intent> is favoured!”

So long as the player can come up with a sentence or two of plausible-sounding justification, then its fine!
If they get repetitive, nudge the player to be more creative!
“Stealthy roll? I sing to Orion again. +1d?”
“No, Orion tires of the same verse over and over. Think of a new verse, or tell me why Chiron would aid you”.

Fair enough Black Spike. Sounds good! I actually had less of an issue with Song of the Eldar than Astrology, but I get the “wise-like” aspect of astrology “determining” that the forthcoming test is in fact to be done during an especially fortuitous time. Just curious of others’ take on this.

Yes, I see the Astrology FORK/Link very much as a Wise-Like effect, allowing the player to ‘determine’ that the Stars are Right for <PC Intent>.
You could run it slightly differently, saying that by seeing which Stars are in Ascendancy, the PC can figure the best way to approach a task.

e.g. “We want to sneak into the Castle. I read the Stars to see our Omens.”
GM: “You see that although Orion is not out this night, the Moon is waxing through Scorpio. A sure indication of Community and Friendship”
“Ah, then the Guards will gather together, rather than spread out on the walls! We shall look for less-patrolled areas! I get my +1d?”
GM: “Sounds good, sure!”

I’ve been in games where astrology was a catch-call FoRK, and it seems lame to do it that way. (Though, if it’s accompanied by cool fragments of elven lore, then that goes a long way toward making up for it.) As as GM, I’ll allow players to FoRK astrology but as a minimum I expect there to be a time cost, enough time to do a bit of divining - consulting astrological charts, cast the bones, whatever. If it’s nothing more than a bit of recall, you can use it for anything!

What about a Linked Test? You want to know if the stars are right for you tonight… and found than today is the worst day of all!

I came up with an abusive Instinct back when I had an astrologer:

“Read the stars every night.”

The result? The GM said, “OK, once per session, you can just FoRK Astrology into a test, provided you say that’s what the stars told you would happen.”

But Astrology is supposed to be a cheating semi-magical skill. I’m a little too lax about it, but I always make sure the player says a couple of lines about how the stars help him out before using it.

Decided to not have the Skill Song (Song of the Eldar), as it seemed a) to easy to abuse in the most ridiculous manner, and b) I just could not get into the mindset of an astrology using Elven Ranger (even if it is an ‘elf thing’). Maybe at an other point, after being more familiar with stuff like that I will be able to embrace it.