Broken Patterns

Just as Amber is reflected in Shadow, so is the Pattern.  These reflections gradually become bent and twisted, and eventually, ones appear with holes in them, holes which allow someone crazy enough to walk through the hole then move to the center between the lines.  While this requires a strong will (Chaos or better Psyche), anyone can try to walk a Broken Pattern and gain power over Shadow.  Most of those who try belong to various societies of sorcerors who pass on the knowledge and the opportunity of initiation to their disciples over the years.

There are, however, some problems with walking a Broken Pattern.  For one thing, you end up with a defective power.  That hole you walked through to get into it keeps cropping up in everything you do with it, introducing a flaw.

For example, if you try to walk through Shadow, you end up in all the least pleasant parts of the shadows you go through.  Bandits frequently show up, broken glass litters the road, you frequently ride into war zones and nuclear test sites, it alternates between sandstorms, 120 degree heat, snow, hail, and torrential downpours.

This flaw shows up in some way in just about everything you do with the Pattern.  Basically, you get fifteen points of Bad Stuff that only applies when using the Broken Pattern.  This tends to make your life fairly lousy.  It also takes about twice as much movement to perform any power that requires movement as the real Pattern does.  (Thus, normal shadow travel is at half the speed)

Finally, the Break in the Pattern will show up as a flaw in the initiates mind, personality, or body as well.  This flaw is called the Pattern's Price. The Broken Pattern initiate will have one personality trait or mental aspect (usually an undesirable one) which is magnified several times, or some physical flaw which may never be healed or overcome (because the body will revert back to it's flawed state, in order to conform to the Broken Pattern).  Whenever a Broken Pattern initiate fails in the use of a Broken Pattern power, the Pattern's Price will manifest itself more strongly for a time, as the Break in the Pattern gains strength within the initiate.

There is only one way to cure the flaws caused by Broken Pattern Imprint--Walk the real thing.  This requires having the blood of Oberon, however, in which case you were likely better off walking the real thing in the first place.

Most of the powers of a Broken Pattern initiate are just like those of regular Pattern, except flawed. A few cases of either new or heavily affected powers are discussed below.


Broken Pattern Power Breakdown

Requires Chaos Psyche


Differences from normal Pattern Powers

Blood Curses

Broken Pattern adepts are able to utter a blood curse, just like those with the blood of Amber.  However, the Broken Pattern adepts curse is more draining than that of an Amberite, costing the Broken Pattern adept her life in all cases.  However, this curse is weaker than that of an Amberite, because no matter what the curse, the Break in the Pattern manifests itself in the curse as well, providing some way for the target of the curse to break the curse.  There will always be some action which the target of the curse can perform to break the curse. How the target of the curse can find out what action is required is up to the GM, who probably will have a pretty good idea for a quest before the curse is even uttered.  

Hellride to Artifacts & Creatures

Broken Pattern initiates tend to hit the worst of Hellriding routes.  The Break in the Pattern also prevents initiates of the Broken Pattern from ever being able to find the exact Shadow they want unless they have been to the Shadow before, or they follow someone to the Shadow. They can seek whatever Shadow they desire, but the Break will manifest itself as an imperfection in the Shadow they finally arrive in, where the Shadow does not live up to their desires in some way.  All Hellriding to intangibles are affected this way, so seeking someone in Shadow also doesn't work, instead leading to some flawed shadow of the subject.

Hang Spells on the Broken Pattern

Having learned to call the Sign of the Broken Pattern to mind, the Adept can now hang spells on the Broken Pattern.  Be warned that such spells may come out somewhat warped, or may slide into the Break at inopportune times and vanish, though the latter is rare.

Broken Pattern Defense

This works much like Pattern Defense for someone with Pattern Imprint, except that the Pattern has a Break in it, making the initiate vulnerable to those who can sense the Break.  Anyone who studies the initiate with Logrus Sight or Pattern Lens can see the Break, and attack through the Broken Pattern Defense with no resistance.

Broken Pattern Sight

The Break in the Pattern manifests itself in a blind spot in the adepts Sight.  Certain things will simply not be visible to the Broken Pattern adept through the Broken Pattern.  There is usually no rhyme or reason to what is left out, but the blind spot will sometimes manifest to miss things which the adept subconsciously does not wish to see (such as things which would be frightening or which would conflict with the adepts beliefs).  Even worse, Broken Pattern Sight will occasionally show things which are not true, such as showing a card to be a Trump, when it is really just a regular playing card.  The Broken Pattern also usually takes longer to employ than the true Pattern, as the adept has to look at things for a few moments before the lens comes fully into focus.  

Broken Pattern Tendrils

Non-physical tendrils may be manifested. though they cannot manipulate physical objects they may be used to direct magical effects, or a conduit for a psychic contact. With effort the tendrils can be used to reach into adjacent shadows.

Dodge the Break

Through practice and familiarity with the Break in their Imprint, the adept has learned a bit about how and where it manifests.  Shadow travel can now be done at near-normal speeds, and the danger of Hellrides is greatly reduced.  The blurriness and inaccuracy of Sight and Scrying is mostly cleared up.

Mend the Break

The adept has even more control over the Break, and is learning how to compensate for it.  The cost is [2] points for every point of Bad Stuff manifested by the Break the adept is able to avoid.  The Break can never be completely avoided (minimum 1 Bad stuff), and this power does not do anything to lessen the Price of the Pattern for the adept in any way.

Edit/Mold?/Erase?/Gate? Shadow

As Pattern, with the Break adversely affecting the outcome of the characters desires. The adept can also Manifest the Break, forcing their imprint of the Broken Pattern upon a Shadow.  This has the effect of introducing the adepts Break in the Pattern into the Shadow in some form.  The Broken Pattern adept can never choose how the Break manifests itself; she can only force the Break to manifest, causing the Shadow to manifest some flaw.  The Shadow will not take on the flaw immediately, but will change to conform over the course of one week Amber time (so if the time stream is different, the break will take more or less time than a week to manifest).

This Breaking of a Shadow is tenuous, though, and anyone with Advanced  Pattern Imprint will notice the flaw as soon as the Shadow is entered or viewed with the Pattern Lens, and may change the Shadow back to normal.  Any influence of Pattern on the Shadow for 24 hours or more (such as the presence of someone with Pattern Imprint) will cause the Shadow to revert to normal, though the change may take some time, as the original warping did.

If a Broken Pattern Adept makes a mistake while imposing the break, the Shadow will be permanently damaged, but so will the adept. The Shadow will have a hole ripped in it, which can only be mended by someone with Advanced Pattern Imprint, and the  Broken Pattern adept will be physically wounded and the Pattern's Price will permanently grow stronger.  The adept can choose to cause this permanent rift if desired, and suffer the consequences.