One of the major issues is also in the structure of the game itself- if the game is, for example, an online play by post with a wide recruitment base a SG can have an idea of what they want to run and put out the word to see who is interested. If you are in a tabletop setting where the group is defined before the game then it is far more important to have the discussion about what everyone wants and expects from the game.
The reality is that you have to run the game before you can define group (unless you already have a history together). Whether it is pbp and tabletop, a lot of players drop out, and in the case of tabletop, there are not many players to choose from (depending on timezone etc of course). That is not necessarily different for RL tabletop ... except that in RL one tend to have at least a little bit of history. Even the constraints you put up ahead of the game needs interpretation and reinterpretation in the context of the troupe. Only players wide experience from a range of different games and troupes have much chance of gauging the implications before seeing them in practice.
That said, outright clashes over acceptable themes and styles have not been a big problem for us. And if we were to start over with the same troupe, I am sure we would have got a lot more commitment into player and troupe goals. That history really helps. Maybe some change is possible even at this point, if we just tie up some lose ends first.
As a player in Loke’s game I do want to stress I think the game is great and working towards being a demon slayer (I’m playing the Maga who was hoodwinked into demon worship to gain Mercurian Magic) is seriously hampered by my character having deficient Perdo. If that weren’t the case she would have already gone whole hog, invented a “Circle of Demon’s Eternal Oblivion” and just said “eff it, I’ll surround the whole covenant with a circle and blast them every day at least once for a whole season.” But such is not tobe and others seem maybe a little less motivated.
There are alternatives to Demon's Eternal Oblivion for demon hunting. Secluding the demon in a circle of containment, for example, with Rego Vim, or in a container with an enchanted Muto Vim effect ala the wicked Jar (RoP: I p. 122). Any demon you catch and contain is one less moving freely in your covenant. And of course, there's always the Flambeau toolbox - when in doubt, try Pilum of Fire.
When the demon is immaterial, that's hardly worth trying.
This has come up, but one question. How do you make sure that the demon stays put while you trace the circle? Seriously, are there any well tried tricks that we should know about?
It's worth trying to confirm whether the demon is in fact immaterial
Temporarily force him to stay put for diameter with another effect, or show him that being invisible is a trick magi don't need to learn from demons while he's busy with something else and not paying attention to that chalk line appearing on the ground.
Use MuVi(Te) with duration day and turn him into a rock while you draw the circle.
There are a few ways other than nuking them down with Pedro Vim depending on if you want straight magic or a mixed combination. The hardest part will normally be finding the demon.
Muto Vim to temporarily bind the demon to an object, then ward around the object. Depending on the SG, you might be able to carry the object with the demon bound into it into an already created ward.
Rego Vim to command/summon the demon into a ward. This would require a lower level than the Muto Vim (it's base is level +20, compared to +10) but it is a ritual.
If you have the time then keep creating wards scattered about, to slowly squeeze the demon into a smaller and smaller area. This is by far the most time intensive method, but only requires a single spell. Eventually it will get to the point where the demon has to choose between fleeing outside the AotH or being trapped in one of the wards.
One issue that is not directly spelled out (I hope and believe intentionally) is what happens when a demon is destroyed- one posibility is that it is merely the earlthy manifestation which is in fact destroyed in which case entrapping a demon is a far greater burden on it than merely "destroying" it. One reason I favor this explanation is that as I understand it (and of course YSMV signifgantly) there are a finite number of demons from the fall whose numbers cannot increase, and if mortals were able to truly destroy them their power would be diminished in relatively short order (for demons and angels at least) to the point where they would be impotent. Which means either a) you do not really destroy them or b) there is a way of producing new demons.
Re-reading it appears that option 2 is canon, but raises the question of how do demonic offspring which are themselves demons have free will to decide to be demons...
Is it not? [RoP:I:29] has it that a demon can be slain, and that is the demon dying, not just its physical form. The demon's soul goes to Hell to suffer for eternity.
Well... if a demon's soul goes to hell can it then reform into a new demon is sort of where I was going with that, but apparently demons can also reproduce sexually- though it also indicates that all demons chose evil of their own free will, which would not apply to demon children, so that is inconsistent...
To be fair, if the demon reforms its original form over the next 1000 years that is functionally the same in game terms to being left in hell to suffer eternally.
If the soul returns as a new demon, somebody has changed their mind about that eternal suffering. It seems to me that the chances are similar to those of returning a human soul from Hell.
That it is inconsistent does not surprise me. Is it clear that demon off-spring are demons?
Yes, it is spelled out that the offspring of two demons are demons. Devil children (human demon hybrids) are sterile but more human than devil.
Part of my perspective on the issue is how would anybody know that they suffer for an eternity in hell, as opposed to growing a new demonic body. I mean theologians could speculate but really it should be that they are presumed to suffer for an eternity in hell. (though "angelic" demons like the avengers might also be an exception...)
Though I can't find anything about what happens when angels die either...
TBH, if that is anything more than a hypothetical concern, you should consider reducing your power-level ... and if that is the power-level you want to play at, you should always be prepared to have to house-rule.
That is an interesting idea. It is difficult to pull off, though, because you need both high level and high penetration. DEO is brilliant in that you can lower the level to increase the penetration. The alternatives (generally) require higher arts.
The main concern should be to avoid sin though. Demons are ubiquitous, so people (in general) have to learn to live with them being around.
Angels exist at all power levels - from the extremely powerful to quite weak. The weaker angels are no more powerful than the weaker demons, and being able to destroy a weak demon is not all that remarkable for a magus of the Order of Hermes.
That being said, trying to destroy angels is usually a bad idea - you really don't want the Divine as an enemy.
Indeed. The power level to commit murder does not suffice. You need the power level to get away with murder too.
Cosmology is also an issue- after all if the divine will support Muslims versus Christian and Christians versus Muslims then their corresponding angels might also be casualties of each other. If a Christian crusader kills a minor angel supporting a mosque- whom the crusader regards as a demon, then presumably the entire wrath of heaven is not directed against the crusader. OTOH the same issue as with demons also occurs- all Angels have been around since the beginning, so their numbers are both finite and not growing, which suggests to me that if anything can decrease their numbers that the divine will be the losers in the long run. Angels can fall and become demons at minimum, and if demons fight angels it implies that demons (who can die) can also kill angels (hence war in heaven)...