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So there is an allegedly real phenomenon called "loosh farming," wherein disembodied astral spirits harvest some kind of emotional energy from the emotions of humans on earth.

Robert Monroe wrote about this in the book Far Journeys. I don't claim that this is real in the real world, but I do claim this would be awesome in the Old World of Darkness.

As I recall, changelings can harvest emotional energy from human emotions. However, changelings are embodied people, not disembodied spirits. Mages might be able to do something with Mind and Prime spheres, but mages are also embodied people.

So to get the "disembodied astral spirit" thing going, I think the "loosh farming" must be done by Umbrood.

However, I don't know how to do this with Old World of Darkness rules. I don't even know whether it's possible.

Example emotion-control effects include "Haunted Heart" (Changeling Chicanery 4) or Mage Mind Sphere 2.

I had hoped to cite Umbrood charms, but I can't find any that seem relevant.

Actually, Wraith the Oblivion might be a very good fit for this. (Page 137 of Wraith explains that Wraiths with Keening can induce emotions, and then try to feed off those emotions with a difficult target of 9. )

Originally, I was thinking that Werewolf rules for Umbrood might have Charms suitable for getting Gnosis points out of human emotions, but I have looked at all the Charms I could find and nothing seems to fit.

As it is, the only way to do "loosh farming" would seem to be a two-part venture involving an emotion controller (e.g. a Mage with Mind Sphere) and several compatible Wraiths. The emotion-controller would induce appropriate emotions in normal humans and the Wraiths would keep trying until they could raise their Pathos from the induced emotions.

If there are Umbrood rules comparable to the rules from Wraith or Changeling, I would like to know the title of the book that contains those Umbrood rules.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Who is trying to do this? Are you the GM, trying to come up with a way to have a villain doing this? Are you a player, trying to come up with a way for your character to acquire the energy of emotions for some reason? \$\endgroup\$ – Mickle Dec 11 '14 at 15:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Mickle : I don't have any chronicles running, so I'm neither ST nor player right now. I just spend lots of mental effort on trying to figure out rules. If I were ST, I would not be eager to let players use this, because if they used it correctly, they would get huge amounts of Quintessence. Also, there are several warnings in White Wolf books that say things like, "Vampires shouldn't allow Mages to use them as Quintessence batteries" and so on. I'm interested in whether the Old World of Darkness could allow such "loosh farming" because I don't think Ars Magica could allow such a thing. \$\endgroup\$ – Rick Dec 11 '14 at 21:39
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It seems like the the 'flavor text' of the various Storyteller games seems to allow this as a possibility, especially in the case of Banes corrupting people, but I don't recall seeing a Charm written up with specific rules for doing it. It seems like something that would be pretty universal across Spirits but it's not in the like of common Charms, like Armor, Materialize or Create Fire, etc. There's also not an option to steal Power from your host using using the Possession Charm either.

After some more research, I checked the Werewolf and Mage core rule books but found nothing. There's a Charm that's somewhat along the same lines in the Book of the Wyrm: Second Edition. The Spirit called the Drattosi has the following ability:

Consume Essence: This Charm allows the Drattosi to eat another Spirit and take its Power into itself...The Drattosi attacks with Rage but Drains one Power point into itself per success....The Drattosi can even use this charm to eat a spirit or Garou's Gnosis.... (pg. 199)

That's a case of a Spirit tearing Power from some other being, at least.

If there exists an official write-up for a power similar to "loosh-farming", it's probably attached to a specific spirit and buried in one of the splat-books.

With regards to Reverie and Ravaging, as someone who's been an Storyteller for most of the oWoD games, I've always felt that the various power points that WoD Supernaturals use (Gnosis, Quintessence, Glamour, Pathos) are roughly the same. It wouldn't be too much of a stretch to allow some Umbrood, perhaps a specific species, to use the Ravaging rules from Changeling to steal Power from mortals. You could use "scaring people" as the Ravaging threshold for the Spirit. I would also play up the flavor that the mortal feels drained and depressed after the Spirit is finished.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Changeling's Reverie and Ravaging are both interesting cases. I am not a Changeling expert, but I would be interested to read what actual Changeling experts have to say. \$\endgroup\$ – Rick Dec 11 '14 at 21:43
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Wraiths could do this on their own without a separate, non-Wraith "emotion controller". Although interacting with people an objects in the Skinlands (what Wraiths call the world of the living) isn't easy there are multiple Arcanoi that can do it.

A circle of Wraiths who want to "loosh farm" would need to tailor their skills to the task, but it's plausible and a damn cool idea. There are two ways I can see them going about it:

  1. Haunt a place that gets enough visitors to be worth the effort. Old hotels, tourists-trap castles, hospitals and old schools builds are all good candidates. Manipulate the place and the stories about in order bring out the desired emotions in the people who visit.
  2. Haunt a person or family. Send them otherworldly glimpses and manipulate their feelings and surroundings in order to generate the strong emotions to feed from. This is probably far more sinister than haunting a place, since the Wraith(s) are basically driving someone to the brink of madness (or beyond) in order to feed off them.
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Wraiths in W:tO are disembodied and they do harvest some emotions. Unfortunately I don't remember much from the book (I've only read 2ed book and it was quite a time ago).

One thing that I do remember is that in Infinite Tapestry book those wraiths are called Umbrood too.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ That is a very good insight, and I would vote this up if I could. \$\endgroup\$ – Rick Dec 11 '14 at 11:51
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Remember that changelings have a dual nature: one real and one chimerical. The chimerical nature is what can feed from something similar to emotions. I say similar because the emotion of the dreamer is not actually important, and many changelings do not care about what the dreamer feels. It's the creativity or the destruction of creativity what changelings feed of.

I'm not an expert on W:tA spirits, but Wraith and Spectres are another kind of spirits that do feed on emotions, using their Passions or Dark Passions. They can even create those passions on other wraiths or people.

Feeding on the emotion you created with Keening is not usually very profitable, as you need to spend 2 pathos and rolling at difficulty 9 won't give you more of 2 successes most of the times. The trick is to be a true farmer and spend a little more effort.

For example, if you feed on love, you can manipulate people to actually fall in love. At the beginning, the feelings may be artificial, but with a bit of luck, natural feelings can arise from the situations you created.

Another example, if you feed on sadness, you can make a couple angry at each other, and then feed on the sadness of the breakup.

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