PCs & Pregnancy Policy
What Onyx Path has to say…
The following has been quoted from Werewolf the Forsaken (2.0). This section explains the game system authors intent of how pregnancy should be viewed in the Chronicles of Darkness.
“Pregnancy, or playing pregnant characters, has a sordid history in modern storytelling games […]. Sometimes this is due to a lack of understanding in regard to the reality of how pregnancy works. Sometimes it’s due to bias and assumptions about the people who want to feature it in their games. Sometimes it’s genuinely meant as an expression of body horror. […] This section is not to discourage using pregnancy as a potential catalyst for body horror, but offers alternative views and points for a Storyteller to consider when using pregnancy within a story.”
“Limiting choice for a character, and therefore the player, is not often the best way for a Storyteller to handle a situation, even one like pregnancy, and following that childbirth and parenthood. Removing a character from play, or limiting her access to the story before the player is ready, can alienate the player. It also feeds into all sorts of dull tropes about pregnant people and, by extension, women at large.”
“Any game should, at every turn, give the players more choices to make, not fewer. They may be hard choices, but straight up limitations — preventing the choice from even coming up — limits the group’s ability to tell exciting and powerful stories. As such, players and Storytellers alike should treat pregnancy in your game not as an obstacle for the character, but as a new series of challenges. If, as the Storyteller, you can keep that single concept in mind, you will be able to encourage powerful stories about new life, and the fear and exhilaration of bringing a child into the world.”
“Talk to all your players about this sort of storyline. The sad fact is, one in nine women in the US alone has experienced a miscarriage in her life. Chances are good you already know women who have experienced trauma related to pregnancy and childbirth, or you know people who love women with these experiences.”
Yes, if you would like to portray pregnancy on Eternal Noire, you may. However, there are some rules and mechanics you will be required to follow if this is a story arc you are interested in playing. If these rules and mechanics seem intense, it’s because this kind of story line, as Onyx Path themselves suggest, should be possible but also should be taken seriously. REMEMBER the game we are playing in is a HORROR game, and while pregnancy can happen in the horror genre you may have to fight harder for a happy ending.
These rules are the default ones for pregnancy between PCs. Other bodily horror story lines, like chest bursting aliens, will be determined by STs and story-driven plot and their designated mechanics.
- Consent Required: OOC Consent of both players of the PCs involved in the pregnancy must be obtained.
- Staff Approval: Venue ST must be made aware of the pregnancy by both consenting players (via threads) and give them the ok BEFORE the story is started.
- Time Requirement: Yes, it will take 9 months of IC/OOC (real life) time before you will get to not be pregnant anymore, barring harm/death/supernatural influences.
Things to Know
- Harm will happen. You are not immune to all harm while you are pregnant. You can still die, miscarry, or experience consequences for your actions. This is a dark game, and you will likely never be “safe”, and that goes for this plot device.
- Miscarriages may happen. If you have a sensitivity to this kind of content we advise avoiding this kind of plot device for your PC.
- Birth since you don’t usually get to choose when or where you go into labor, you don’t get to here either. The ST can trigger this to happen at any time. You may not. If you want this to be off screen, send in the request to the ST.
- Pregnancy Conditions: You will be required to have a persistent pregnancy condition that changes depending on the trimester you are in. The Conditions are copied below for your convenience but can also be found in Werewolf the Forsaken (2.0) p. 294-295, with some mechanical adjustments.
- FIRST TRIMESTER (PERSISTENT) The first three months of the pregnancy. A person at this stage may not realize she’s pregnant. She may experience nausea, fatigue, and flu-like symptoms. As a result of that fatigue, she suffers a –1 to Initiative and any Stamina-related rolls. She can still do just as much physically; she’s just worn out. Most pregnant people also report extraordinarily vivid dreams. As a result of these dreams, the character regains an additional point of Willpower when she can sleep for four hours or more.
Beat: When you come to the realization that you are in fact pregnant, take a Beat. This Beat can only be earned once this trimester.
Resolution: Start of the second trimester, or end of the pregnancy.
- SECOND TRIMESTER (PERSISTENT) The second trimester is freeing. A pregnant person feels energetic and creative. She suffers a –2 to Initiative due to increasing size and gains +2 to any Stamina-related rolls as she is feeling motivated and more energetic now that morning sickness is over. She also suffers a –2 modifier to all extended action dice pools, as any given task can turn quickly to thoughts and worry over the future.
Beat: When the character first feels the baby move, or quickening, take a Beat. This Beat can only be earned once this trimester.
Resolution: Start of the third trimester, or the end of the pregnancy.
- THIRD TRIMESTER (PERSISTENT ) Now the pregnant person turns inwards. Her thoughts take on stillness as she prepares for coming changes to her life. She gains an additional die to all Wits and Composure rolls during this trimester. Her body has experienced some of the most dramatic changes imaginable. She suffers a –2 to Initiative due to how large the new life in her has become, and how hard it is to move as quickly as before! Even her brain changes to accommodate the growth of her fetus, so that she grows more forgetful and sometimes confused. She has one less dot of Dexterity and one less dot of Resolve over the course of this trimester. This does change related static traits like Willpower.
Beat: When the character gives birth, in a scene or during downtime, take a Beat. This Beat can only be earned once this trimester.
Resolution: Birth or, otherwise, the end of the pregnancy.
What about after birth?
After the child is born, it falls under our typical site policies. As a reminder, the following is quoted from our Code of Conduct:
“On-Screen NPC Minors – While characters may have children, no NPC that appears “on screen” may be underage. Families can come up in ST ran scenes, where staff are present to monitor the use of the NPCs. These NPCs may also end up in danger or killed in a horror role play game, so keep this in mind when choosing how you’d like to incorporate these into your stories.”