Allright. There's an NPC in a home game which has a companion status that I have to design. The NPC is a magic human with a zmaj / zmey bloodline who, as a result of gaining might, has developped the ability to change into a draconic form. I'm trying to think of the best way to design that NPC.
A Muto Corpus animal power to justify the dragon shape was my main option, however I'm running into some problems, namely:
- Powers and virtues which are gated by the shapechange. While an auram requisite would make sense to add into the shape change power for something like a breath weapon that brings up a gale-like wind, there are several such powers which are locked unless the character turns into dragon form. One or two powers is somewhat easy to build into a shapechange spell, more than that becomes complex;
- There is a strong possibility that the character will gain in might over time. This might lead to the dragon shape becoming more powerful, including new powers, increase in size, etc. Having a system that easily allows for the character to gain might / magic qualities would be prefered.
- The fact that Muto Corpus Animal spells work a lot better when you're shapechanging into something that has clear mundane stats. While a dragon's stats can be adjudicated, when you add the possibility of growth over time, it becomes complex to justify why the power has a given level, and what upgrading it a magnitude means. The idea is giving me a headache.
I've thought about treating the dragon shape as a lizard heartbeast, with epitome or chimera inner mystery on top. Initially, it seems easier, but upon reading how refining the heartbeast works, I realized it doesn't really make progression easier than just using the RoP:M virtues once you get into the nitty gritty of adding powers, and not just attributes. It also has lore implications I'm not sure the troupe will want to deal with.
The last scenario I'm looking at... looks essentially like building the character as a magical animal with a Muto Animal Corpus effect to change into human shape, and pretending the character is a magic human character anyway. This may make evolution of the character easier.
Any advice? Are there things I didn't consider, such as example characters that have gated powers behind a shapechange that I could look to as an example of how to proceed, or ways that particular virtues or virtue-flaw combination that would add for example, a stat boost to only one of the shapes of a character (e.g. something that would let improved soak work only in dragon shape without me needing to invent a system of how to adjudicate fake virtues resulting from the actual shape change spell magnitude)?