Normally angels are created with and/or are given a cover. Suddenly, a new employee works at a company with people thinking he was there already for years, or someone has a new cousin popping up with them thinking he already lived in the house the whole time.

But how is it with demons involved? Are they also prone to these reality changes by the God Machine (meaning vulnerable) OR do they wake up and go to breakfast and blink, "Um, who the hell is this guy sitting beside sis at the table? Cousin? What cousin? I don't have a cousin -- you don't even have a brother. MOM!"


3 Answers 3


No, they are not immune, but resistant.

From the Demon:The descent (Page 198) describing demonic forms:

Sense the Angelic

All angels are agents of the God-Machine and are capable of recognizing that connection when they encounter each other. The Cover that demons adopt shields them from angelic scrutiny. Some angels are designated to seek and destroy nonangelic supernatural entities, such as demons. Demons who retain this ability have adapted it to work in reverse, making it easier for them to sense angelic beings.

From this fragment you can see that even without having this form they are sometimes able to discover angels, but without having this supernatural sense it might be very difficult. So having this ability demon would easily find that your cousin, living in the basement since high school is in fact angel that appeared yesterday, without it they will have much harder work. Still, even with this power its far cry from being completely immune:

The demon can sense the use of angelic powers on people and places. Anytime the demon is in an area where an angel has used Numina in the past 24 hours, or if she encounters a person that is currently under the effects of an angel’s Numen, roll Wits + Investigation to notice the effect. If she has encountered the power before, she can positively identify exactly which Numina was used.

Oh, obviously to use that you have to assume demonic form... so doing in front of your "older bother" you will blow your cover.

EDIT: After reading a bit more I have found this fragment:

Those [demons] who survive learn to keep a constant, vigilant watch for signs that angels have found them. They have one great advantage over their new human neighbors in keeping out of the way — they’re still angelic enough that none of the mind tricks, illusions and spatial folding the God-Machine uses to conceal its facilities work on them. Demons always see the gears, always perceive facilities and can sense when Infrastructure has been built or an occult matrix is forming [..] Braver demons hijack Infrastructure, stealing new Cover identities before angels have time to manifest into them

So I have to change my answer a bit:

  1. No, they can't simply recognise angel by looking at someone, it requires quite an effort.

  2. They can sense that something is happening nearby and that reality has been changed.

So, if you'd go on a camp trip and meanwhile angel used your existing brother as a cover - you wouldn't easily find that, but if you never had brother before and suddenly there is one sitting at the table - well, you will know that the reality has been warped. You would probably have implanted memories of you two growing together but you'd know that they are false.

Still, if the cover and infrastructure was very subtle - "Your brother was living until now with your stepmother that you hate and never visit and now decided to drop in" - demon could fell for it.

  • \$\begingroup\$ This doesn't actually say anything about whether a cover affects a demon, though - just about whether a demon can spot an angel who's already got a cover. Which is to say, it addresses the most common case, where an angel's cover is someone the demon would never have met, but not the rare case where an angel assumes a cover that just so happens to be the demon's significant other. \$\endgroup\$
    – GMJoe
    Jun 26, 2015 at 4:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Well, yes and no: it shows that demons actually need to put an effort to recognise an angel, its not automatic "immunity". And in the end angles change the whole reality, not simply mind wipe you saying "from now I am your brother" - he ALWAYS was his brother. From now on. \$\endgroup\$
    – Yasskier
    Jun 26, 2015 at 5:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ Recognizing the brother as angel is clear that they must actively do so or ping with aether and put 2 and 2 together. Although the question is more like do their memories adapt like that of mundane beings. Thus "Mom who is that?" or "Hey how did you do on the exam?" \$\endgroup\$
    – Thomas E.
    Jun 26, 2015 at 8:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ It seems that I've been wrong... Please check the updated answer. \$\endgroup\$
    – Yasskier
    Jun 27, 2015 at 2:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Just came up upon the same thing. One additional point though to your edited answer: "Infrastructure was very subtle". If there is infrastructure the demon automatically sees it (they always recognize infrastructure as what it is). \$\endgroup\$
    – Thomas E.
    Jun 29, 2015 at 6:36

I can't find a specific rules reference in WoD, but a common literary trope would be for demons to be immune to the effect, just as (presumably) other angels are. It's very common for stories to consist of members of another "class" of being as having the ability to recognize each other in ways that mortals do not--in this case, it would also mean sensing "actual" reality, and not the "constructed" reality of the angelic cover.


Demons seem to be immune.

The description of a God-Machine-created Cover granted to an angel only refers to altering human memories retroactively.

A demon’s Cover is more than just a human body to live in and a name to call it by. The God-Machine’s Infrastructure actually alters reality around its servants, creating an entire, albeit austere, life for the angel in question. It can’t (or doesn’t) create human beings out of whole cloth, but it can alter human memories to include the new arrival and it can create objects and even places to support an angel’s existence.

So immunity is both a blessing and a curse. If they lack the new retconned memories that other people got, a bit of desperate, quietly panicking improvisation is required to maintain their cover.

Of course, although the relationships this new person suddenly retroactively has could be a hint, it's ultimately impossible to guess whether it's an angel or another demon behind the mask. You'd suspect it's an angel if their relationships could not ever plausibly have been bargained away by someone else as part of a pact, or if they live in a house that literally did not exist yesterday. Even then, it still might be a demon who performed a recent act of 'angel-jacking' and stole a freshly created Cover intended for an angel. (They might even still have the Plugged In Condition, in which case you're dealing with a demon who is heavily incentivized to try and fulfill the original angel's mission...)


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