Synergy

The Newest Futhark

syn·er·gy
Pronunciation: \’si-nər-jē\
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural syn·er·gies
Etymology: New Latin synergia, from Greek synergos working together
1broadly : combined action or operation
2: a mutually advantageous conjunction or compatibility of distinct business participants or elements (as resources or efforts)
While the term Synergy is a modern one, the concept is not. Ancient heros have been coming together to benefit from

Cooperation (Synergy •)
Dice Pool: None
Cost: None

True synergy is predicated by cooperation. If individuals cannot see past their differences in order to strive towards a common goal, they will never be able to become greater than the sum of their parts. If mundane or magical social or mental effects would cause a Scion with Cooperation to oppose someone who also has Synergy, he may spend 1 Legend to resist instead of 1 temporary Willpower. If the effect normally costs more than 1 Willpower to resist, the scion may choose how many of those Willpower points to spend Legend for instead.

In addition, when using limited teamwork a Scion with Cooperation grants double the normal bonus (i.e. two extra dice instead of one).

Third Alternative (Synergy ••)
Dice Pool: None
Cost: None

"To the victor goes the spoils" is a lesson from a bygone age. Today's synergistic culture seeks the win/win and strives to make everyone victors so the spoils multiply. Those with Synergy are in tune with the ebb and flow of negotiations and can easily find that middle road that has all participants leaving feeling satisfied. Whenever a discussion turns from arbitration to mediation and the Scion finds himself striving for the middle road, he adds the rating of his highest Synergy boon to his dice pools when rolling to achieve that compromise. If multiple characters with synergy are cooperating to reach the third alternative, the bonus dice stack.

For example: Jack Covey, Scion of Baldur with Negative Synergy (Synergy •••) and Third Alternative (Synergy ••) and Stephen Welch, Scion of Zeus with Third Alternative (Synergy ••) are negotiating the release of a prisoner from the Warden of Durance Vile. They have evidence of the prisoner's innocence and could possibly prove that the prisoner should be freed. The Warden however, is (as usual) unresponsive to such issues and stands by his desire to keep the prisoner for eternity. Jack and Stephen, keen negotiators, opt to aim for the third alternative: the warden releases the innocent prisoner if they can find a more deserving guilty one, or possibly retrieve someone who has escaped in the past. When making Command, Politics, or Presence rolls to convince the Warden to accept the third alternative Jack and Stephen gain a bonus of 5 dice to the roll (the total of their two highest ranking boons). These bonuses last for the scene, until the compromise is achieved, or until any of the Scions who activated it opt to stop seeking the Third Alternative (whichever comes first).

Negative Synergy (Synergy •••)
Dice Pool: Manipulation + Politics (out of combat) or Manipulation + Command (in combat)
Cost: 1 Legend per target, penalty, and action
Though they do not often admit it, Scions who study the benefits of Synergy also learn the things which can inhibit it, and how to use those negative synergistic factors for themselves. Through proper positioning, verbal maneuvers, and subtle influence of his opponents' competitive urges the Scion causes another group to stumble over themselves. The Scion spends four or more Legend and chooses two or more opponents to influence.  He rolls Manipulation + Politics if in a non-combat situation, or Manipulation + Command if in battle. Each success on the roll can be applied towards duration or difficulty. For each success applied toward difficulty, all targets lose 1 die from every pool (including attacks, damage, and miscellaneous actions). Each success applied toward duration allows the effect to continue for one action. The total cost of activating the boon is the dice pool penalty plus the number of targets plus the duration.

For example: Donald Trump, Scion of Twopay, finds himself fighting three giants. He activates Negative Syngery, places himself in positions where the enemies must trip over themselves to attack him, and also begins verbally prodding their Dark Virtue of Rapacity by telling them that he's a great prize and none of them are smart enough to catch him. He rolls Manipulation + Command and gets 5 successes. He applies two of those successes to difficulty and three to duration, spending 4 Legend to cause the giants to lose two dice from all of their pools for his next three actions.

Valuing the Differences (Synergy ••••)
Dice Pool: Perception + Empathy
Cost: 1 Willpower
True seekers of Synergy know that all viewpoints contain at least a kernel of truth. The Scion chooses a willing target and spends 1 Willpower to grant that target access to his virtues and learn from his own. He rolls Perception + Empathy and for each success can choose to grant the target one dot of a virtue he possesses, or grant himself one dot of a virtue the target has. In no case can he grant or receive more dots than the original owner has nor can he give or receive a Virtue that the target already possesses. These dots are temporary, lasting only for the remainder of the scene.

For example: Jack Covey, a usually laid back Scion with Courage •, Endurance •••, Expression ••, and Loyalty ••• is fighting alongside his ally Stephen Welch. Stephen is a much more exuberant individual with Expression •, Intellect •, Valor •••, and Vengeance ••••. The two are squaring off against the titanspawn who killed Jack's mother. Jack activates Valuing the Differences and rolls 6 successes. He taps deeply into Stephen's wellspring of Vengeance and grants himself 4 dots, while granting Stephen greater insight into Loyalty (in the form of two dots of the virtue). Even though he has higher Expression than Stephen, Jack could not use Valuing the Difference to enhance the virtue, as they both already possess it. At the end of the scene the giant lies dead and the dots fade.

Note that this boon requires a little bit of bookkeeping, as virtue channels are per story while these dots only last for a scene. Even over the course of multiple activations the limit on channels of a specific virtue still remain. So if Jack were to channel Vengeance three times during the fight with the giant, he could only channel it one more time in the remainder of the story, no matter how many times he uses Valuing the Differences to gain access to it.

Communication (Synergy •••••)
Dice Pool: Perception + Empathy
Cost: 1 Legend per member (and 1 Willpower)

With proper communication, a group can rapidly become more than the sum of its parts. The Scion spends 1 Legend per ally he wishes to include in the Gestalt and forges a mental link between the members. Apart from allowing instantaneous telepathic communication amogst them, the link also means that each member gains access to the ranks of one ability of one other member. If the Scion spends 1 Willpower point as well, each member gains one dot of an Epic Attribute they do not already possess, but only if at least one other member of the Gestalt possesses it. No knacks are transferred by this boon.

For example: Jack finds himself in an unexpected fight alongside amazons on the island of Circe. Out of ammunition, he is handed a brace of javelins by one of the warrior women. With no skill in Throwing, he activates Communication and includes the four Amazons in his Gestalt (costing 5 Legend). He instantly gains access to their three dots of Throwing, and they learn how to better get their point across via his 4 dots of Presence (though it's unlike to matter in the battle). If he also spends a point of Willpower he can give the amazons a point of Epic Dexterity as he has it and they do not. He cannot gain any benefit from their Epic Strength, as he already has a dot of it.

Abundance Mentality (Synergy ••••• •)
Dice Pool: Intelligence + Craft
Cost: 1 Willpower + 3 Legend
One who believes in synergy holds an abundance mentality: the belief that there are enough resources and successes to go around. One who masters the Synergy Purview takes this knowledge from the realm of optimism to realism. This boon can be used two ways:

First, it can ensure that there are enough resources to achieve a goal. The Scion holds an object then spends one Willpower and three Legend points to roll Intelligence + Craft. For each success he can create one copy of that object. There are two restrictions on this power. The object must be small enough for him to hold in one hand without the application of Epic Attributes or other supernatural effects. Second, he cannot create objects without first having a source to work from. Any objects created last for the scene only.

Second, he can ensure that there are enough opportunities for success to go around. By spending one wilpower and three Legend points as part of a multiple action the Scion rolls Intelligence + Craft (or the other pool if it is lower, per the standard multiple action rules) - 4. Any successes beyond the base difficulty of the linked action can be given to an ally. They will apply to the next roll the ally makes using the same pool as was used in the second action, though they fade at the end of the scene if unused.

Renewal (Synergy ••••• ••)
Dice Pool: The lower of Perception + Empathy, Charisma + Command, and Intelligence + Medicine
Cost: 1 Legend and 1 Willpower Point per member

When an organization is in disarray, organizational development effeorts are directed towards renewal and refocusing its employees integrating systems. For sustainable high performance, the people and integrating systems must be operating re-generatively. A Scion with Synergy takes this principal one step further, from the theoretical to the real. The Scion rolls the lower of his dice pools in Perception + Empathy, Charisma + Command, and Intelligence + Medicine (counting automatic successes as 2 dice for the purposes of choosing which pool is lowest). He chooses one willing target per success and pays the cost to activate the boon. The targets' wounds are distributed evenly amongst the members of the group. Then their remaining Legend are pooled and redistributed evenly, as are their remaining points of temporary willpower. Any points in excess of a member's maximum are lost at the end of the scene.

For example, Jack and three of his friends are in a pitched battle and two of his allies are gravely injured. He rolls his Intelligence + Medicine (which is his lowest pool) and gets 3 successes. He chooses to include all three of his allies in the target group, as well as himself. All told the four of them have 6 lethal wounds, 8 bashing wounds, 40 Legend, and 28 dots of temporary willpower remaining (after he pays the 3 legend and 3 willpower to activate Renewal). The lethal wounds distribute to give them each one, and two members take one each. The bashing wounds distribute evenly, giving them each two bashing. Each member gets 10 Legend. Finally, they each receive 7 temporary Willpower. Jack, whose Willpower is 6, loses the excess at the end of the scene if it has not been spent.

One for All (Synergy ••••• •••)
Dice Pool: Manipulation + Presence
Cost: 20 Legend + 1 Willpower

The God using this power can completely give himself over to the needs of his peers, distributing any or all of his knowledge and aptitudes to any number of people of his choosing. For each success, the user of this Boon may transfer up to two dots of Abilities, Attributes, Epic Attributes, health levels, Willpower or Virtues to any character or characters of his choosing. Successes may also be used to transfer Boons or Knacks on a one-for-one basis. The recipients may not have any score raised above their normal maximum based on their Legend score and other applicable factors. The giver may reduce any of his own scores to zero, but if Willpower, health levels or any Attribute or Virtue is reduced to zero then the God will fall into a deep slumber from which he cannot be awakened for the duration of this Boon. This Boon lasts one scene, and the recipients must be aware of and willing to receive the gift.

Note: this boon taken directly from Civitas (Scion Companion, p. 246)

All for One (Synergy ••••• ••••)
Dice Pool: Intelligence + Command
Cost: 25 Legend + 1 Willpower
While this power is in use, the God sets up a subconscious psychic network that links the nervous systems of each member of a squad. This provides many benefits. First, all the members of the squad enjoy telepathic communication, which is both instant and silent. Second, any member of the squad may use the highest base Dodge or Parry DV possessed by any member of the squad, modified by the character’s own attacks and other bonuses or penalties. Third, any member of the squad may use the highest level of any Ability possessed by any member of the squad in place of his own. Fourth, any member may spend Willpower on behalf of any other. Finally, any member of the squad who has at least one dot in an Epic Attribute (including one transferred to him through Gift of Attribute or One for All) may use any squad member’s Knack associated with that attribute, even if the character using it would not normally meet the requirements to do so. For each success rolled, the God using this Boon may include one person in the squad. All members of the squad must remain within fifty feet of at least one other member. This power lasts one scene, and all members must be willing and knowing participants when the power is activated.

Note: this boon taken directly from Civitas (Scion Companion, p. 246)

Emergence (Synergy ••••• •••••)
Dice Pool: None
Cost: 1 Willpower + 10 Legend per person, and see below.

As complex systems can emerge from simple bases, so too can a Synergistic group create a whole that is greater than its parts. Like a multitude of ants combining to form a colony, a group of Scions with Synergy can come together to create an entity whose powers dwarf their own. When a Scion activates this boon, he chooses a number of willing scions up to his Legend. All participants merge into a single entity twice as tall as the tallest participant.

The resultant entity's traits are determined as follows:

Attributes: The entity's attributes are each equal to the highest value for that attribute amongst the participants. For every member byond the first which knows at least one boon from the Synergy purview add one to each attribute. So an entity formed from Scions with Strengths of 4, 7, and9 would have a Strength of 9. If one of the participants (not including the original user) knows Valuing the Differences, the resulting entity would have a Strength of 10. Epic attributes can be purchased for one legend point per dot, though they cannot excede the highest rating amongst the participants.

Abilities: As with attributes, the entity has access to all abilities of the participants, at a rating equal to the highest in the group. For every member beyond the first who knows at least one Synergy boon, add +1 to each ability.

Supernatural powers: The entity has access to all of the boons of the participants. It has one knack per dot for each epic attribute. Knacks can be chosen from amongst those known by the participants at no additional cost. Knacks which are not known by the group can also be selected, but cost 3 legend points each. All prerequisites for knacks and boons must be met, including the possession of a relic if the character donating the boon is not of sufficient Legend to activate the boon without one.

Relics: The combined entity has access to all of the particpants' relics. If multiple weapons or armor are owned, the group must decide which ones the entity is using. It can wear at most one suit of armor and wield one ranged and one melee weapon.

Virtues: The emergent entity has the four highest virtues of the characters in the group. In the event of a tie, the players choose which four to grant it. Any virtue channels it uses are deducted from the donating character's available channels as if he had used them himself.

Willpower and Legend: All characters in the group pool their current willpower points and legend points. Any boons or knacks the entity uses are have their costs deducted from this pool When the effects of Emergence end any remaining points are divided equally among the participants (any remainders from uneven division are lost).

Health Levels: The Emergent Entity has health levels equal to those of the healthiest participating member. It is unwounded, regardless of what wounds the group may have sustained. Every member beyond the first with Synergy may spend legend points up to their Epic Stamina to grant the entity bonus health levels equal to the legend spent.

The entity lasts for the rest of the scene or until its Incapacitated health level is filled. When it fades, any damage it has taken is divided equally amongst the participants.