Rites of Renown

These rites celebrate both the specific accomplishments of an individual werewolf and his achievement of a new station in the pack or sept. Garou long to receive such rites as much as they fear facing a rite of punishment.

Rite of Boasting (●)

Boasting and bragging have always been a vital aspect of warrior cultures. Boasts serve to work up a fighter’s courage while putting fear into the opponent. But to truly impress, the boaster must back up his claims. This rite is more than formalized bragging, for it forces the Garou to “put up or shut up.” Before a battle or mission, the Garou boasts before all assembled that he will perform a particularly impressive feat (for example, “I will kill three Black Spirals with only my claws,” “I will scale the electrified razorwire of the refinery” or “I will be the first to reach the shield wall, there to wrest the enemy’s standard from his dead hand.”). The boast is performed in a ritual fashion, with a short recitation of lineage and a summary of glorious deeds performed to date. If he makes good on his boast, he magnifies the Glory of the act. If he fails, the resulting derision of his peers costs him Glory; boasting is only respected if you can back it up. This rite is most commonly used among the Fianna, Get of Fenris, and Wendigo, but most tribes have some version of it.

System: Standard roll, though a resistance or bonus may be added based on the difficulty and glory of the proposed feat - modest goals are harder to boast about than impressive lunacy. For every two successes, the boast earns a potential extra Legend Beat, up to a total of five; if five Legend Beats are obtained this way, they automatically transfer into one dot of Glory upon successful completion of the boast. If the boast is carried through, the Garou earns the Legend Beats. If he fails and lives, he loses that amount. If he dies while carrying out his deed, there is neither loss nor gain of extra Renown.

A single pack may boast of a deed, but only the pack leader can perform the rite. In this case, the a bonus of +1 is given to the roll, and the entire pack gains or loses the Glory award.

Rite of Wounding (●)

This rite celebrates a Garou’s first battle wound. Each tribe marks this moment differently, but all honor this sign of courage. Many tribes rub ash into at least part of the wound to form a scar of remembrance. The Get of Fenris always end this rite with a fierce all-night revel filled with drinking and fighting. By contrast, the Children of Gaia end their Rites of Wounding with prayers for peace and understanding among all creatures.

System: Only the wounded character and the ritemaster must be present for this rite, although the werewolf’s pack and sept are normally present. The wounded character receives two Legend Beats if this rite succeeds.

Rite of Accomplishment (●●)

This rite is used to honor a werewolf and recognize the trials he has endured to attain his current standing. An elder will call the honored Garou forward, much as the Garou might be called forward should the elders want to punish or criticize her. As the Garou advances, the elder begins listing all of the things the Garou did to gain the acclaim. The Rite of Accomplishment then takes place, and anyone who wishes to speak on behalf of the Garou being honored may do so. In conclusion, the elder says something along the lines of, “She is made greater in her tribe, her sept and greater among the People everywhere. Let this be known.”

System: This rite is performed when a character has 5 Legend Beats and wishes to gain a point of permanent Renown. Only one success is necessary, unless someone disputes the rite, in such an instance, the roll is contested by the disputer’s Manipulation + Persuasion.

A failure on the roll is considered indicative of a failing in the applicant. The ritemaster often receives a portent from Gaia showing the unworthiness of the applicant. If the roll suffers a Dramatic Failure, the applicant must undergo a penance before anyone will again give him the Rite of Accomplishment. Such is the injustice of Garou society.

It is possible, although rare, that someone will dispute the rite. In this case, the disputer stands and heckles the ritemaster as he performs the rite, making bold assertions about the negative qualities of the applicant. The applicant so insulted must make a Resolve + Composure roll not to frenzy; if he frenzies, the rite is over. If he keeps his cool, and the rite is successful, no one can rightfully question his worthiness for at least three moons (i.e., no one can dispute any Rites of Accomplishment performed on him during the next month and a half), and the heckler may lose a Legend Beat.

Rite of Passage (●●)

After a cub undergoes his First Change and becomes aware that he is a werewolf, he must undergo his Rite of Passage. Werewolves are not accorded adulthood or respect until they pass this seminal rite; they are mere cubs until that time. They are not even considered true Garou, and Shadow Lords do not refer to them as such until this rite is completed. Similarly, a cub is not a member of any tribe until his Rite of Passage. A male cub born to the Black Furies, for example, becomes a member of whatever tribe will offer him a place among them by use of this rite.

During a Rite of Passage, the cubs must complete a dangerous quest meant to prove that they have the courage, honor, and wisdom befitting a werewolf. However, few cubs undergo this rite alone. They are often joined by their pack-to-be, other cubs who are also coming of age. The ritemaster commands the would-be pack to go out into the world with a definite goal to achieve, and he forbids it to return until it has tried its best to accomplish this goal. Different tribes impose different goals, although multi-tribal septs usually reach a compromise. A Wendigo rite often takes the form of a vision quest, while the Get of Fenris commonly send their cubs into combat with Wyrm-spawn. Invisible spirits sometimes accompany the cubs in order to watch over them and report their doings to the elders.

If the cubs succeed in their quest, a ritemaster performs this rite upon them, marking them with a pictogram that brands them as full-fledged Garou. These pictograms are usually painted, but the Red Talons carve them into the flesh of the young heroes.

If the cubs fail, however, they are considered second-class citizens until they are granted another opportunity to prove themselves.

System: A cub is not considered a Cliath, and thus a full member of the Garou Nation, until the Rite of Passage is successfully cast upon them.

Rite of Praise (●●)

This rite honors a werewolf who has given more, risked more, and sacrificed more than necessary for the good of other Garou, Gaia, or anything related. The entire sept is gathered as the ritemaster presents the commendation, often with a token worthy of the honoree, such as a fetish, as a final reward. This rite is not used lightly, or to reward expected behavior — it honors only the greatest.

System: The ritemaster presents to the sept the deeds and actions of the chosen Garou warranting such praise. For each success on the Standard roll, the praised Garou gains an extra die to use for Social dice pools within the sept over the next three months.