The Ananasi are quite different from the other shapeshifters, and with a number of unique features. This combined with numerous rule changes and multiple books, there are quite a lot of things to clarify. Werewolf the Apocalypse - 20th Anniversary Edition: Changing Breeds (CB20) is used as the deciding factor when sources are in conflict, while the first edition of Players Guide only is used where it does not contradict anything written in any other source. Information found only in sections about a specific group (like the Kumo) is presumed to be exclusive about them, while updates concerning Ananasi as a whole are assumed for all groups. Missing information in newer sources has not been presumed to overrule older sources where information has been given.
Se also Crawlerling, as many of the unique features of the Ananasi has to do with that form, and clarifications concerning that form is found in that article.
Version Differences Edit
In older sources there are no clear distinction between Hatar, Antara and Kumo (goblin spiders). Ananasi are also depicted much more as "living vampires" than they are in later sources (only nocturnal, dependent on blood and incapable of eating anything else). They were also described as being very rare, sensitive to pesticides, and only following the Weaver or the Wyrm. The distinction between leaders and drones in Crawlerling was not present in older sources, and the Ananasi did not have to worry about losing memories. If an Ananasi gains blood points from blood from non-warm blooded animals varies between books. The venom of the Ananasi is not mentioned in the oldest sources. In Second Edition of Players Guide (but no other book) spirits who teaches gifts are listed, and there is no mention of Ananasa acting as a teacher, implying that Ananasi learn gifts only from spirits like other changing breeds. Only CB20 states that they may use venom even in Homid. The lists of Gifts varies considerable, but statements of using Garou lists should be viewed as suggestions to approximate, and nothing more. However, with the Storyteller's permission, gifts from such lists could still be used.
In some sources a spider-born Ananasi is called "Arachnos" while in others "Arachnid". It is easiest to treat these as synonyms.
Biological Terms Edit
In a few places, the Ananasi are refereed to as "insects" rather than "spiders". This is a taxonomical error, as spiders are arachnids, and not insects (arachnids include spiders, scorpions, ticks, mites and others). Where it says something like "spiders and other insects" it should read "spiders and other arthropods" (arthropods includes aside from arachnids also among others insects, spiders, millipedes, as well as crustaceans like crabs, lobsters, shrimp, krill and woodlice).[WP]
The fangs of the Ananasi are in several places called "pedipalps". This is incorrect, as that is the term for the small arms (or antenna) that spiders have aside from their eight legs. The correct term for the fangs is "jackknife chelicera", though simply "fangs" is also correct. The chewing parts are called "mandibles".[WP]
In some places "mammal" and "warm-blooded" are incorrect used as synonyms. Birds are also warm-blooded, so Ananasi will gain full nutrition from them too.[WP]
In a few places what the Ananasi injects with their fangs into their victims is called "poison". It is a common misconception that the terms are synonyms, but a poison must be ingested to take effect. The correct term is "venom".[WP]
Features of the Ananasi Edit
Sex Appeal: Despite their somewhat detached nature, Ananasi can be just as, if not even more of, sexual predators than the Garou. This works identical as Animal attraction for Garou (in older editions the difficulty depended on the user's own Rage, so Ananasi were instead given a difficulty of 4). The Ananasi do this by consciously spreading pheromones. Many Ananasi use this as a way to get to feed blood from humans. Except in very unusual circumstances this ability only works in Homid and on ordinary humans. Supernatural creatures are generally immune, though they may still be impressed, and have their interest piqued that way.[I]
Sleep cycle: An Ananasi can choose their own sleep cycle freely in the same way as ordinary humans can, though most prefer to be nocturnal, and many have a preference to dark, desolate places out of the sun. They need the same amount of sleep as ordinary humans. It is not unusual for an Ananasi to live as an ordinary human at day, but at some nights acting out their other nature, to hunt for blood, meet other supernatural creatures, carry out their duties, etc.[I]
Ananasi suffer no more ill effects of sunlight or other bright light sources than ordinary humans do.[I]
Willpower: Ananasi may lack Rage and having a strange psyche, but they can use Willpower in the same way as Garou and the other Fera, including ignoring wounds, ignoring primal urges, and halting (induced) frenzies.[I]
In the Crawlerling form, health works very different. Unless otherwise stated, the information below is for the other forms.
Healing: Ananasi heal both as normal humans, and can heal themselves by spending blood. Lost limbs can also be healed but will take a week, and is painful. Ananasi with lots of blood in their system, and who easily can get lot more, can actually heal aggravated damage much faster than other shapeshifters, and can with access to enough blood theoretically come back from aggravated damage that have brought them Incapacitated to full health in about a day (one aggravated damage can be healed every fifth turn, but at most one per scene), but without blood they can only heal as ordinary humans do.[C] This makes it more costly for Ananasi to heal damage compared to most Fera and they can't keep up healing as long. But if they do survive a fight, they can come back quicker from damage caused by fire, supernatural means and similar, and almost nothing will permanently handicap them, provided they are able to get blood.
Homid born Ananasi have no problem healing themselves by spending blood in their breed form. Ananasi cannot heal themselves in this manner in their Crawlerling form.
Illnesses and toxins: Due to their lack of regeneration Ananasi are actually just as susceptible to toxins, poisons, venom and illnesses as ordinary humans. They may however purge such things from their system by healing themselves with blood, but that might take large quantities, and hunting for blood is not easy for someone who is ill. So it does happen that Ananasi die from normal sicknesses. Most of modern medicine is about as effective on an Ananasi as on a normal human. Despite this, they do age in about the same way as other Fera (though they have additional ways to extend their lifespan).[I] An Ananasi who is ill is a carrier until she has fully purged it from her system in the same way as a human would be. STD:s may transmit though the feeding process (both ways).[I]
Contrary to the rumors, Ananasi are not particularly vulnerable to insecticides and other toxins designed to kill arthropods. They suffer the effects of such things roughly to the same degree as a human would in most of their forms, however in Crawlerling, such things can be a serious problem.
This also means that the Ananasi experience the effects of alcohol and drugs to the full effect, like humans, rather than like most Fera, and can so relatively easy intoxicated. However, their somewhat detached psyche means that very few become addicted, or feel a need to use such things.[I]
Battle scars and staying active: As Ananasi lack Rage and do not regenerate, they do not have the option to try to remain active through wounds that would incapacitate or kill them, and so, they have no "normal" way to suffer battle scars. If an Ananasi through some strange circumstance still should suffer such, it would not award her any Renown. An Ananasi with the Gift Mother's Touch may still try to heal a battle scar in the same way as other Fera.[I]
Aggravated damage: Ananasi do not suffer aggravated damage (or other complications) from weapons made out of silver (nor gold), but they do suffer aggravated damage from other things in the same way as other Fera (such as fire, garou claws and klaives). Despite the rumors, Ananasi are no more sensible to pesticides than humans are (unless they are in their Crawlerling form). Ananasi soak all forms of aggravated damage with their full Stamina (modified by their current form).[I]
Venom glands: Ananasi in Homid do have venom glands, but these are quite small and the venom is weak. The Merit Venomous provides the same kind of venom glands as Pithus (and strength of the venom), not only in Homid but also in Araneid and Lilian, as well as the ability to use Gifts relying on venom in Homid form, something that is otherwise not possible.[C]
An Ananasi usually only have two to three doses of venom and it takes a day to replenish each dose, but eating lots of venomous spiders replenish it a lot quicker.
Type of venom: The exact effects of the venom is left to the player and storyteller for each individual Ananasi, as different spiders have very different types of venom and it might be affected by the Ananasi's aspect and faction.[I] Some examples are venom that paralyses, tranquilizes, causes necrosis, cramps, bleeding from orifices, fever, nausea, headaches, extreme pain, sever rashes, or even an euphoric ecstasy similar to the Kiss of the bite of a Kindred, or even do two or three of these things at the same time.[I]
Given enough time to experiment and consume a large quantity of spiders of appropriate species, an Ananasi can even change the composition of her venom.
Strength of the venom: As a general guideline a full dosage of venom given in Pithus form should quickly kill (aggravated damage), or in some way quickly incapacitate a healthy human for many hours. The Ananasi may of course inject less for a milder effect. The effect is diluted in Lilian, Homid and Araenid,[I][C] so it should slowly kill or cripple a healthy humans for a few hours. The bite of a single spider in Crawlerling is very unlikely to kill, but might inconvenience a healthy human for about half an hour. This however varies widely. And if more spiders bite the effect is more powerful, up to the same strength as in Pithus is the Crawlerling form is biting with as many as it can fit on a person. Nothing prevents an Ananasi to do a partial transformation of the mouth parts to manifest the jaws and venom sacks of the Pithus form in other forms, and so deliver a bite with full strength and full dosage of venom.[I]
Without medical assistance a human might never recover from the venom completely.
Supernatural resistance: Supernatural creatures such as Fera and vampires are generally very resistant, if not completely immune, to the usual effects of the venom (but not to Gifts that utilizes the venom). A general guideline is to cut the effects and duration in half, and that any damage is lethal rather than aggravated, and no long term effects. There might however be exceptions, for example a venom that causes blood clots might cause a vampire to loose blood point.
Ananasi are not immune to the venom of each other, nor to the venom of Nagah or other toxins, and suffer that at full effect. Mages, hunters and similar are not considered supernatural for this purpose unless they have some kind of special protection against venom.[I]
Independent on if the victim is resistant or not the the secondary effects of the bite of the Ananasi, the bite itself will cause aggravated damage to most types of creatures if it done for the purpose of doing damage, rather than only injecting venom or drinking blood. The tiny fangs in Crawlerling will not cause such damage.
Overcoming supernatural resistance: At the Storyteller's discretion, some Ananasi can make their venom effective at almost full strength against creatures like Fera and vampires, by spending a point of Gnosis at the same time as she injects the venom. However, even very lethal venom is very unlikely to kill such creature, but might still paralyze or in some other way incapacitate it until it has neutralized the venom through regeneration or healing it.
Kumo: The venom of the Kumo is not as varied as with the rest of the Ananasi. The have a supernatural tainted venom that even affects shapeshifters and other supernatural creatures (including vampires). However, it only works in their Pithus form. In all other forms, their venom will not affect such beings at all, and be a lot easier to resist for others. Each bite lowers one random Physical Attribute by one, unless the victim manages to resist the venom. The loss can be healed as if it was aggravated damage.
Ananasi use blood instead of Rage, but unless otherwise specified they can not us it the same way.
Feeding on blood: Ananasi gains Blood Points from blood more dependent on the volume than the quality or type, as long as it is warm blooded (mammal or bird). That means that a pint of blood from a human, a cow, an ostrich, and a Garou is worth the same to the Ananasi (one Blood Point), even though they may taste different.
An Ananasi does not gain any blood points from drinking the blood of vampires, revenants or the plasm of a manifested ghosts. Blood from mages, other Fera (even cold blooded ones), changelings and even demons in human form are just normal human blood to an Ananasi (though it might taste different, especially blood from other Fera is exotic). They do gain blood points from drinking the ichor of other Ananasi, but most do not like the taste. It is possible to drink from themselves, though this feels wrong, so few would even consider that (each blood point drained caused one unsoakable lethal health level of damage).
Blood from other vertebrates such as reptiles, fish and amphibians also works, though a larger quantity is required for the same amount of Blood Points, and many Ananasi do not like the taste. Some develop a taste for human blood, or even for the blood of Fera. Invertebrates such as arthropods, mollusks and others also provides blood points, though a large quantity is required for a single blood point. Many Ananasi like eating insects or spiders.
Blood bags, blood soup and even undercooked steaks (???, there is no blood whatsoever in butchered meat, the red substance is a protein called myoglobin) also provide blood points, though the less fresh, less fluid, and more cocked it is, the less effective it is, so a large quantity is needed for a single blood point.[I]
An Ananasi can drain one blood point per turn from her victim if she can do so undisturbed and can manage to hold her victim steady (or paralyzed by venom). This can be done in any form, including Crawlerling, but that requires to swarm over the victim. Each blood point drained do one unsoakable lethal damage to the victim. Vampires instead lose their own blood points (but the Ananasi gains no blood points). Health levels lost in this way can be healed or regenerated as usual. The Ananasi can if she so chooses drain blood directly through the fangs, thought the same channels that are used to inject venom. Normal spiders can't do this.[I]
Substances in the blood a werespider drinks can affect them. They can be drunk if they drink enough blood from intoxicated people, and can suffer side effects from blood thinners and other drugs.
An Ananasi can heal the small wounds on their victims by secreting a special enzyme onto the wound through their own saliva. This however do not work for wounds left by the massive fangs in Pithus. Using this enzyme does not drain the Ananasi's store of venom. It can't be used to heal anything other than tiny wounds, and can't heal health levels.[I]
Spending blood: Ananasi may only gain one extra action per turn by spending blood, may only heal one level of bashing or lethal damage per turn by spending blood, and may only use one Blood Point per turn to create great webs (really large webs takes several Blood Points, and therefor several turns). Ananasi may only use blood to one effect per turn. This in affect limit them to spending one blood point per turn, except for the purpose using a gift that requires more to activate.[I][C]
Activating the Gift Blood Pump completely removes all these limitations for the rest of the scene (both numbers of Blood Points, and the number of types of effects), though it does not remove the limitation that Gnosis and Blood Points can't be spent in the same turn (save for that the user may use blood in the same turn as activating this Gift).[I]
Ananasi can't heal themselves by spending blood in Crawlerling, but can do so in all other forms, independent on their breed form.[I]
Out of blood: Most Ananasi that have spent all their blood points feel just fine, and are not weakened. Their skin does not become pale, as it is not their normal ichor (blood) in their veins they use, but blood they have ingested. Though they do feel a thirst for blood, they can easily keep that at bay, and can theoretically go decades without blood without any problems. They simply can't use any more blood until they have ingested more. What they do need is food and drink, just like any other living creatures, or they will starve or die of thirst.
All Ananasi do feel an irresistible need for fresh warm blood one time in their life, around the time for their first change, though most will find an opportunity to taste a little bit of it in a controlled way out of intellectual curiosity, rather than having to kill an animal or person in a blood crazed fury in order to get it.
An Ananasi can not "lose the spider" in a way similar to how a Garou can "lose the wolf". So, even if an Ananasi has spent all her Willpower points and Blood points, she may transform just as usual.[I]
Food: Many Ananasi dislike ordinary food and prefer to live only on blood and liquid food. Others are just fine with ordinary human food. Unlike what many think, most species of spiders can eat meat after shredding and mashing it with their chelicerae and mandibles (jaws), and likewise most Ananasi can actually eat normal food in all forms, but some are only capable of eating liquid food, and have to inject digestive juices into meat and other harder foods to liquidize it first. Some only drink the blood and leave the rest, as blood is booth fuel, food and drink, and so is the only thing they really need.[I]
Overfeeding: An Ananasi can theoretically ingest a bit more blood than their usual maximum. However, the Ananasi will be very sluggish until she has spent the excess blood, similar to how people and animals react to eating to much. For this reason, very few Ananasi do this.
Kumo: The Kumo are an exception to that Ananasi do not gain blood points from vampires. The Kumo gains the same amount of blood points from vampires that they drain from them. The Kumo can also feed blood from corpses as long as it still is somewhat liquid. Marawa's Brood actually prefer this kind of blood.
The webs that an Ananasi in her Pithus form can produce comes in various types. It is however natural webs (thought monstrously oversized), and the Ananasi must extract the web from her spinnerets to for example spin a cocoon over an incapacitated enemy, or to cover a surface with a net-like structure. It is also possible to be more creative and for example spin lines to help cross surfaces or to climb, though such thing will take time. Other possibilities are trapdoors, wrappings, bridges and shelters. A very skilled Ananasi could even make armor out if it. Remember that complicated things will take more time to create, and requires skill. It is also entirely possible to anchor the web and use it as a safety line for a dangerous climb or jump, or to climb down with. A web is very sticky, though the ends of the legs of an Ananasi will not stick to it, so they can safely walk on it, and even manipulate it somewhat.[I]
Once created the web will remain until it is destroyed by fire, cut down, or very slowly withered away by wind and rain (that can take days or weeks outside and decades inside). Ananasi in Lilian or Pithus can also eat webs (both their own and others) and remove it that way. This will not regain the blood points spent on creating the web, but about half the mass of the eaten web can be "recycled" to create new webs without having to spend blood points, if within the same scene.[I]
Ananasi are in their Crawlerling form also capable of producing webs, though those are too weak to trap anything larger than small birds at the most, and it can only carry quite small loads. It can however with lots of time and effort be spun and woven into fine silk and made into cloth and clothes.[I][WP]
Though Pithus is the only normal form the giant webs can be created in, nothing prevents an Ananasi to do a partial transformation of the rear to manifest the end of the Pithus abdomen where the spinnerets are, and by doing so being able to produce web in other forms.[I]
The way Ananasi steps sideways is unique among all shapeshifters, and should more appropriately be called "Crawling Sideways". They walk along the threads of the Weaver's web that composes the Gauntlet, and they can do so only in the Crawlerling form. This is easiest to do so in areas with lots of Weaver influence, like science labs and churches, and harder in other places. Tenere and Kumoti will find it harder to do so in Wyrm infested areas.
This has several consequences. No reflective surface is required (and will not ease the transition), though some cracks to vanish into, or objects to vanish behind, are required. Ananasi actually never risk getting stuck in the webs. A botch on the roll should still have some negative consequences though, like stumbling on a hostile creature on the other side. They also can't carry anything with them across, at least not anything large, simply due to that the Crawlerling form is very weak. They can however help other shifters whom are stuck to get loose, if they should find them.[I]
An Ananasi can also peak through the Gauntlet, almost as per the usual rules, however it does require her to either be in Clawlerling, or doing a partial transformation to Crawlerling (and create at least one leader).[I]
The first change for a Homid Ananasi is a much slower process than for other changing breeds. It is both emotional and physiological, giving them time to adapt, experiment and understand. It can take weeks before the Ananasi actually changes her form for the first time. Around this time she will for the only time in her life feel an irresistible urge to taste warm blood, and her own will not suffice. Still, most manage to find a way to do this in a controlled way, rather than being forced to kill. The first change for Hatar and Kumo is a much more violent affair.
The first change for an Arachnid Ananasi is also a slow process, and the spiderling will literary have to eat her way to sufficient mass. While any protean will do the trick, it works much faster by eating ordinary spiders, and lots of them. The young Ananasi's first victims are usually her clutch mates. The hole process can take years while the small spider slowly grows into the Pithus form, and then finally is able to transform for the first time.
Around the time of the first change, many Damhàn will hear the whispers of Queen Ananasa in their dreams, soothing them and explaining a few things for them. Instincts also go a long way to understand what is going on. This means that the Ananasi will be at least somewhat prepared to what's going on, and are unlikely to accidental break the Veil during the first change.
Spider species and human ethnicityEdit
What species of spider an Ananasi is will reflect some things, like the kind of venom they have, and the appearance in all their forms except Homid. Where each of the other Fera all belong to a single or a few species, the Ananasi incorporate tens of thousands of species of spiders. What species an Ananasi belongs to is however not permanent, as eating a large quantity of one particular species of spider can change this (hundreds, perhaps thousands are required, a process that can take weeks or months). The change of species lasts until the Ananasi changes it again, and the new species will be inherited by her offspring. However, some Ananasi are not of a single species, but are instead more of a collection of lots of different types of spiders.
The Ananasi have no tribal distinctions or other kinds of discrimination between different kinds of spiders. What species of spider an Ananasi belongs to will not hinder her from using any of her innate abilities, nor any Gifts. That means that all Ananasi are capable of producing webs, have venomous bites, etc. When it comes to spiders, an Ananasi is only capable of producing offspring with those of the same species as she currently is.
Despite being able to do so, most Ananasi do not change their species of spider, but others change many times during their lifespan. There are rumors of Ananasi that have managed to incorporate or even change species to, not true spiders, but other arachnids such as opiliones (daddy longlegs), amblypygi (whip spiders), ricinulei (hooded tickspiders), solifuges (camel spiders), or even scorpions. If this is true, those who have manage would however still remain Ananasi, and it would be more correct to call the Ananasi "werearachnids" rather than "werespiders".
The species of spider an Ananasi belongs to will reflect her appearance in all her forms, except Homid, however special abilities of the species, or lack there of will not do so, aside from type of venom.
An Ananasi's human ethnicity is likewise inherited, but it is likewise not necessarily permanent (see Crawlerling). Ananasi are well spread over all kinds of humans, though Sub-Saharan Africa has long been their stronghold and so African heritage is a bit more common.
The Forms of the Ananasi Edit
The forms of the Ananasi are unique among shapeshifters in several ways. Despite some similarities, none of the forms of the Ananasi, not even their Homid form, have a true corresponding form among any of the other Fera. Their other default forms are Lilian, Pithus and Crawlerling.
Senses: Most species of spiders have poor eyesight (there are exceptions), and in general quite poor senses aside from the sense of smell.[WP] This does not however hinder an Ananasi at all, in any of her forms. All of her senses in all her forms is at least as good as in her Homid form, and the increased number of eyes often provides an increased field of vision. This does not mean that each spider in the Crawlerling form will have good senses, but the Ananasi as a whole will be able to sense her surroundings at least as well as a human.[I]
Comparison of the default forms Edit
|Breed form||For Homids||For Kumo Metis||For Atahsaias||For Arachnids|
|Appearance||Human (almost)||Human-spider hybrid||Giant spider||Swarm of regular spiders|
|Mimicry||Human (or vampire)||-||Spider jaggling in the Umbra||Lots of regular spiders or spider gafflings|
|Form exclusive abilities||Sex Appeal||(Kumo: Water breathing)||Enormous webs||Several|
|Speech||Human speech||Human or Ananasi speech||Ananasi speech or as a spider||Ananasi speech or as lots of spiders|
|Movement and jumping||As Homid||2 legs: as Crinos. 4+ legs: as Hispo[I]||As Hispo[I]||At the most as fast as a human walks. Minuscule jumping[I]|
|Limbs||2 arms and 2 legs||A total of 6, 8 or 10 limbs||2 pedipalps and 8 legs||2 pedipalps and 8 legs per spider|
|Eyes||2 eyes||2, 4, 6 or 8 eyes||2, 4, 6 or 8 eyes||Hundreds of eyes|
|Claws||-||Str+2 A||Str+2 A||-|
|Bite||Str+1 A[I]||Str+1 A||Str+3 A||(Engulf)|
|Venom strength||Diluted[I]||Diluted||Full||One: minuscule
Comparison of other forms Edit
|Special forms||Human||Araneid||Great Mother||Megaarachnid|
|Access||Merit (replaces Homid)||Level 2 General Gift (new form)||Level 5 Myrmidon Gift (new form)||Level 5 Kumo Gift (enhanced Pithus)|
|Human (completely)||Human with spider skin||Giant human-spider hybrid||Enormous spider|
|Mimicry||Human (or vampire)||Human in poor light||-||Spider jagging in the Umbra|
|Form exclusive abilities||Sex Appeal||-||Enormous webs[I]||Enormous webs|
|Speech||Human speech||Human speech[I]||Human or Ananasi speech[I]||Ananasi speech or as a spider|
|Movement and jumping||As Homid||As Glabro[I]||As Hispo[I]||As Hispo[I]|
|Limbs||2 arms, 2 legs||2 arms, 2 legs||4 arms, 4 legs||2 pedipalps, 8 legs|
|Eyes||2 eyes||2, 4, 6 or 8 eyes||2, 4, 6 or 8 eyes||2, 4, 6 or 8 eyes|
|Claws||-||Str+2 L||Str+2 A||Str+2 A|
|Bite||Str+1 A[I]||Str+1 A[I]||Str+3 A[I]||Str+3 A|
|Delyrium||No||No (but still frightening)||Even for supernaturals||Increased|
Shape shifting Edit
Dimorphism: At the Storyteller's discretion male Ananasi in Lilian and Pithus may be smaller and physically weaker, but more nimble, than their female counterparts. This is to reflect this dimorphism in most types of spiders. Crawlerling form is not affected by this in game mechanics, though may be reflected in the individual sizes of the composing spiders. Special forms gained through Gifts are also not affected. The following table have this dimorphism in the same way as in Breedbook Ananasi, but for the updated attribute modifiers from CB20.[C] Ananasi that are not clearly male (like those who can shift sex) should go with the normal (female) attribute modifiers, as well as those who belong to a species that do not have this dimorphism.
|Str: +2||Str: +1||Str: +4||Str: +3|
|Dex: +3||Dex: +4||Dex: +1||Dex: +2|
|Sta: +2||Sta: +2||Sta: +3||Sta: +2|
|Man: -1||Man: -1||Man:-3||Man: -3|
|App: 0||App: 0||App: 0||App: 0|
Shifting form: Unlike other Fera, the forms of an Ananasi do not come in a specific order. They can shift directly from any form to any other (it takes one turn, unless a Blood Point is spent to shift instantly). Only one success at the Stamina + Primal-Urge roll is required for any shift, no matter the start and goal forms. Just like for other Fera, no roll or spending of Blood Points is required to reflexive instant shift to Breed form and an Ananasi reverts to her breed form automatically if falling unconscious, or is killed. Crawlerling is considered breed form for Arachnid Ananasi for this purpure.
Adapting and changing: An Ananasi can by eating lots of spiders of approbate types and with time and effort actually adapt and change all of their non-Homid forms. It does not affect Attribute modifiers, but it can be used to better blend in to a particular environment or to confuse someone who has not met the Ananasi in years. Even the composition and effects of their venom can be modified this way. Some werespiders are better at this than others.
Damhàn Culture Edit
Equality: As a whole, the Damhàn culture is actually not dominated by women, but is rather very equal between the genders, and not a few Ananasi are transgender, or does not view themselves as one particular sex, but rather as something in between, or shifting back and forth (requires a Merit). As a whole, they are also very accepting of different gender identities. There are however more female Ananasi of higher ranks, and if two Ananasi of equal ranks and different gender cooperate, it is more common that the female is taking the lead than that the male does so.[I]
Love and mating between two Ananasi is discouraged, but it is not against their laws and there is not social stigma to it.[I] However, the eventual offspring of two Damhàn will be Atahsaia.
Falling to the WyrmEdit
Damhàn are just as likely to fall or to resist being corrupted by the Wyrm as most other Fera. Hatar may have a better chance to resist, but they are also tempted much more, so overall it cancels out. Normal Damhàn, not even Hatar, do not smell of the Wyrm, nor register as Wyrm-creatures to any test (no more than other Fera), unless they truly have fallen. This however does not stop the suspicions from most other Fera, and especially not from the Garou.
Most of the eastern type of Ananasi, the Kumo, do serve the Wyrm (the corrupter), but have not totally given over their minds and souls, so even most of them do not smell of the Wyrm. Antara, who truly serve the Wyrm, even if it is out of a desire to be free from Queen Ananasa, generally do smell of the taint of the Wyrm.
Note that Ananasi do not have access to any gifts or rites that let them simply sense the taint of the Wyrm.
The list of sample behavior for the Obedience Renown was left out of CB20. It should read:
|Teaching another Ananasi; honoring Ananasa through your actions||1|
|Aiding another Ananasi; destroying an enemy||2|
| Discovering flaws in an enemy that can benefit others in the future;
protecting an important secret from discovery
| Bringing balance to a situation of great imbalance;
Destroying a Corax (with good reason)
|Disobeying one of higher rank than you||-1|
|Worshiping someone other than Ananasa||-3|
It is very easy to get the impression that Ananasi are very rare. Most Fera are of the impression that they are next to extinct. They are in fact at the very least one the most numerous Fera (including Garou and Ratkin), and are perhaps as many as all of the others put together. They are however usually far apart, and most of them live their lives only knowing of a few other Ananasi, and rarely see even those, and they have very different life styles.
Some "hibernate" spread out in their Crawlerling form, some live in the Umbra, some in cities, towns or villages, some in the wild, some in Wyrm infested areas, some are more nomadic. Some infiltrate vampire societies, or hives of Wyrm creatures, some live decades only as ordinary humans, som in caverns deep underground. Some work often with other Ananasi, some with other Fera, and some have hardly any contact with others at all.
Spiders exists in enormous numbers, and unlike most species connected to the Changing Breeds, they do not dwindle. They thrive not only in the wild, but also in urban environments, even inside buildings, and even do relatively well in polluted or in other way damaged environments.
Queen Ananasa as a totem Edit
No other totem: A Damhàn can't ever have totem spirit other than Queen Ananasa. She might cast out an individual Damhàn from her grace (and stop teaching Gifts and grant the bonuses in the Sylie) and refuse to listen to pleas of mercy and acts of redemption, but she will not willingly relinquish one of her children to another. Ananasi may still however participate in pack tactics, both with other Ananasi and with other Fera, though they very rarely do, simply because they rarely work with others that close.
Working with Ovid: A Damhàn who joins a group of Ananasi or even a mixed group of Fera is not considered to have broken the decree to not join a pack. That ban is only for Ovid who follow her, not her own children.[I]
Ananasa as a teacher: Queen Ananasa is the personal teacher of all of her loyal followers, and most of them learn their Gifts and Rites only from her. The Damhàn usually do not have to barter for their Gifts, but they could try to convince her. Note that most of the time, the only response a Damhàn will receive is ether silence or the knowledge of the Gift or Rite. If denied, she is free to try again as soon as she has a new argument (such as having gained a new Rank, or is facing a new threat).
The Kumatai and other renegade Ananasi do not have any totems at all (they can't). Antara, whom are the only Ananasi completely beyond control the control of Queen Ananasa, could theoretically take a totem spirit, but that is against everything they stand for.
Kumo: The Kumo do not have Ananasa as their totem but rather Rati, Marawa or Nareau, whom are great spirits of the Wyrm with one of the Kumo houses each.
Personal freedom Edit
It is very easy to get the impression that the Damhàn only obey Queen Ananasa, who is their queen, totem spirit, true mother and goddess all in one, but that is far form the case. In fact, each individual Ananasi is usually given an incredible amount of personal freedom after they have been taught the basics. True, most do try to follow the laws of Ananasa, and to fulfill the goals of their Aspect and Faction, but that is by personal choice. They are free to live (somewhat) ordinary lives if they so choose, work with or against whomever they choose. The Damhàn are even free to rebel against Queen Ananasa and even to become Antara. That most show respect for elder Ananasi is also a choice. Even if an Ananasi meditate in her Sylie every day and commune with her Queen, it can be years between commands from her, and many never receive a single request or even advice from her in their entire life (except for the introduction to her that all Damhàn receives shorty after their first change). Other times an Ananasi will receive explicit and detailed instructions, to keep to themselves, or to share with others.
It is also true that Damhàn are supposed to help each other against others, and that law can even make bitter enemies save each other. But as soon as the external threat is dealt with, the same Ananasi who just worked together can go back to being enemies.
The closest kind of tie an Damhàn gets with another of her kind is usually that of mentor and student. Most Damhàn will drop almost anything they might be doing in order to find, teach and help a newly transformed Ananasi with the basics, even if they are not related, or the spiderling is of a completely different aspect and faction. The teacher may later introduce the spiderling to other Ananasi who can complete the training. After the teaching period is finished many former teachers and students keep in touch. Not all Damhàn do get a teacher this way however, some are taught only by Queen Ananasa.
Except towards very young Ananasi who still are learning the basics, it is unusual for a Damhàn to pull rank and try to order other Ananasi around. Above all, Ananasi are schemers. And to scheme successfully, one must be free to do so.
There is no ban from Queen Ananasi for Damhàn to kill another of her kind, and that happens more often that most think, both of personal reasons, and for conflicting ideas between the different Aspects and Factions, not to mention the more direct conflict between the Damhàn, Antara and Kumo. Cannibalism among the Ananasi is not just an ill rumor among the Ovid, it does happen. Aside from a meal, this practice offers the same chance of adaptation that an Ananasi would get by eating lots regular spiders, and practitioner can also gain the blood points the victim has ingested. Physical conflict is however not the preferred way among the Ananasi to settle scores or resolve conflicts. They much prefer to scheme.[I]
Despite all this, the Ananasi are all part of the web that Queen Ananasa has woven, and sometimes this can be very restrictive in subtile ways. Some speculate that even the rebellious Antara and Kumo still unwillingly serve her purpose.
Interactions with others Edit
Kinfolk, humans and spiders Edit
As Ananasi do not have rage, and do not risk frenzy, it is relatively easy for them to live as ordinary humans with ordinary humans, even for decades. As such, many Ananasi do not take into concern if a human is kinfolk or not when choosing a life partner.[I]
An Ananasi can live a quite ordinary life as a regular human, even for a very long time, if she so desire. Ananasi may not have Rage to unnerve humans with, but their emotionally cold nature may be just as unsettling. If examined thoroughly, it is however clear that an Ananasi is not a human, as they even in Homid still have some arachnid traits like ichor for blood (a somewhat purple mixture of spider blood and human blood), retractable mandibles, venom glands and a few strange organs. It is not unusual for Ananasi to view humans as meet tools to manipulate, and many hold no qualms at all towards killing humans.
Among spiders it is very hard to tell the difference between kinfolk and other spiders, so most Ananasi do not even bother to try most of the time. Most Ananasi are just as willing to eat their spider kinfolk, even close relatives, as they are to eat other spiders. Remember that due to the enormous amount of spiders in the world, there is a also a huge amount of spider kinfolk, so most Ananasi are not concerned about protecting them.[I]
Unless otherwise specified Ananasi can not use their blood points the same way Kindred or Kuei-Jin can. Though most Ananasi have nothing at all to do with vampires, some interact with them quite a lot, and a few even pretend to be vampires.
Drinking Kindred vitae or Kuei-Jin blood: Ananasi are immune to all direct affects of Kindred vitae (blood): They can not become ghouls (they gain no benefits), are immune to being blood bound, can not be embraced (they simply die) and are unaffected by the Kiss. The blood of vampires does not give them any nourishment, it feels disgusting to taste and an ananasi that tries to drink blood from a vampire is most likely to throw up. Some Ananasi (mostly Hatar) instead enjoy the taste, but still gain no benefits, nor side effects, and might still throw up later. Blood from ghouls do function as normal human blood, but do taste quite bad.
Ananasi are just as vulnerable to other affects of vampiric blood (such as Disciplines) as other creatures.
Drinking Ananasi ichor: A vampire that tastes the somewhat purple ichor (blood) from an Ananasi will find it has a revolting and alien taste. If that isn't discouraging enough actually drinking it cases most to throw up. This makes it extremely hard to classify (aside from that it definitely isn't vampire blood, nor normal human blood, in fact it hardly tastes or feels like blood at all to a vampire). If the vampire should manage to keep it down, a Kindred will find it potent to the same degree as with blood from other shapeshifters, but without any particular side effects from drinking it, and a Kuei-Jin will find it as nourishing as if it were ordinary human blood.
Ichor drained from an Ananasi does not drain her blood point, but rather Health levels, as with most living creatures. This counts as lethal damage. The reason for this is that an Ananasi does not store the blood points in her own ichor, but rather in her digestive system. An Ananasi may heal damage caused this way this as any other.[I] Ananasi are also immune to the effects of the Kiss of the Kindred (though many are informed and clever enough to pretend the are affected).
Pretending to be a vampire: Despite having fangs and being blood drinkers, Ananasi are not vampires in any real meaning of the word. They are living, not undead, they need food, they need to breath, etc. In fact they don't actually need blood at all, and they do not have any of the weaknesses of vampires. They do not register as something related to either Kindred or Kuei-Jin, nor werewolves, to most tests vampires (and their servants) can do, but rather as either mortals or something else (and quite strange).[I]
The fangs of an Ananasi in Homid at closer inspection look nothing like the fangs of vampires, as they are in fact the hollow claws of their chelicerae (spider fangs) that they can retract to hide or extend to display (and bite). Their bite does not give a sense of euphoria like the Kiss (there are exceptions). Vampires are immune to most Ananasi's venom.
Despite all this, most vampires seem to accept an Ananasi as a fellow Kindred or Kuei-Jin (though a strange one) given the slightest excuse to do so, if the Ananasi have the Gift Wyrmling Kinship (level 1 Hatar Gift). As vampires are not direct servants of the Wyrm and more individualistic, they are not however as ready to directly accept an Ananasi as an ally as other Wyrm-creatures would, though the Gift's usual social advantage against them do apply otherwise.[I]
Wyrmling Kinship is however not effective against those few vampires who are not tainted by the Wyrm. Against such vampires (or without this Gift), it is much more difficult for an Ananasi to pretend to be a vampire. The few vampires who actually knows about the Ananasi, and those with an investigating scientific mindset, are also much less likely to be fooled if given time and opportunity to investigate. Pretending to be an ordinary human might be a better option against those.[I]
The ways the Ananasi are very similar to vampires is how many of them prey on humans, often through seduction, using hollow fangs to drain some blood out of two tiny puncture wounds, and often later close those those wounds on their victims. A few Ananasi are obsessed over vampires, and act more like them than one of their own kind.
Other concerns: Vampires are immune to most Ananasi's venom, and are not affected by their Sex Appeal (Animal Magnetism), though they might still be impressed by the display. Ananasi can't learn Disciplines, nor vampires learn Gifts. Vampires can't be healed by Mother's touch or other Gifts. Ananasi might be immune to the Blood Bond, but not to Dominate, Presence and similar Disciplines. Unlike other Fera, the aura of an Ananasi as seen by Auspex will not reveal them as werebeasts (shapeshifters), but display them as ordinary humans (a few vampires also have similar auras). Vampires can use the Feral whispers power of Animalsim to talk to Ananasi in their Pithus and Crawlerling form, and Ananasi can be hosts to vampiric beasts (though the usual increased difficulty do apply, making it very dangerous for the vampire), but otherwise Ananasi are not affected by this Discipline, as they are not true animals.[I]
Most vampires are considered Wyrm-creatures (and do smell of the Wyrm), but most are still not willing servants of the Wyrm. The exceptions are kindred with a Humanity score of 7 or more, or with a bestial path score (Road of the Beast, Path of the Feral Heart or Path of Harmony) of 7 or more, as well as Kuei-Jin with a Dharma score of 7 or more. Ghouls are generally not considered Wyrm-creatures, but might still smell a bit of the Wyrm. There is however no easy way to differentiate a ghoul from for example a Pentex factory worker, save tasting their blood.[I] Note that Ananasi do hot have access to any gifts to simply detect Wyrm-taint.
Vampires are immune to the Delirium, but might still find the strange forms of an Ananasi, and especially the transformation to or from Crawlerling, unsettling. Ghouls who are completely blood bound (most of them) are also immune, but most will still be frightened by monsters.[I]
It is easy to get the impression that Weaver-spirits are allies of the Ananasi. The opposite is actually true. The more powerful and intelligent Weaver-spirits know that the Ananasi actually work against the Weaver's designs. However, most Weaver-spirits, even powerful ones, tend to mistake Ananasi for servants of the Weaver.[I]
In their Pithus or Crawlerling form in the Umbra, most spirits will mistake Ananasi to be spider spirits, unless the Ananasi give them a reason to not think that (like shifting form). Weaver-spirits will simply mistake Ananasi for being just other Weaver-spirits,[I] Banes are likely to assume Ananasi in Pithus or Crawlerling to be another kind of Wyrm-spirits (if they have the Gift Wyrmling Kinship), while other spirits often take them for "normal" spider spirits.[I]
That Weaver-spirits tend to think of Ananasi as allies and in their Pithus and Crawlerling forms mistake them for other Weaver-spirits, make an Ananasi practically anonymous in places like the CyberRealm and heavily Weaver dominated areas in the Penumbra, unless they shift form or in other ways act weird.
Queen Ananasa is often the only one who teaches a Damhàn all Gifts she will ever know. But the queen has not banned her children from learning Gifts from spirits, it is just that many Damhàn would not even consider that, and anyway, many spirits would not teach an Ananasi a Gift. However, the Ananasi are part of the ancient pact between the spirits and the Fera, so if an Ananasi finds a spirit willing to teach a Gift, she can learn it.[c] Of those that are loyal to their Queen, the Hatar are the most likely to learn Gifts from spirits, and that is mostly from banes, mad spirits and arthropod spirits, and especially spider spirits. Other groups of Ananasi learn most, if not all, Gifts from such spirits.[I]
|There exists spider spirits of the Weaver, of the Wyrm and of the Wyld. They are usually quire easy to differentiate, as those of the Weaver appear more mechanical, spider-banes usually are horrible twisted, and those of the Wyld are more like ordinary spiders. They also come in all different sizes, from minuscule to absolutely enormous, there size usually (but not always) indicate how powerful and intelligent they are.|
In general Ananasi are deeply mistrusted, if not downright hated, by Werewolves and the other Changing Breeds. The more ill-informed often think the Ananasi are servants of the Wyrm (despite that most do not smell of the Wyrm), and many others think they are servants of the Weaver. At best they view the Ananasi as alien, though still one of the Changing Breeds. The chance of pretending to be one of the other Fera is practically nil. Many Ananasi think of the Ovid, as they call the other Changing Breeds, as inferior and unimportant compared to themselves.
Despite this, some Ananasi successful establish working relations with other Fera, though deeper bonds are rare indeed. The Ananasi find that they have a bit easier to interact with the Black Furies, Children of Gaia, Silent Striders, Stargazers and Black Spiral Dancers than with other Garou, and easier to interact with Mokolé than other Fera.
Ananasi can however quite easy infiltrate other groups of Ananasi. Damhàn, Antara and Kumo often infiltrate one another for one reason or another. No wonder most Ananasi are suspicious towards others of their kind.
Gifts and Rites Edit
Most Damhàn learn all their Gifts directly from Queen Ananasa, but they can actually learn Gifts from other spirits, such as spider spirits and other arthropod spirits and ancestor spirits.[C] Kumo, Antara and Kumatai learn Gifts from such spirits and from banes.[I]
● Replenishment of the Flesh (Level Two General Ananasi Gift): In lieu of spiders and insects can fresh, uncooked human flesh also serve just as well. Humans can't be summoned with this Gift the way spiders and insects can be in most locations. Human flesh and insects must be consumed orally, while spiders simply assimilate into the wound and mend it that way (or replenish the numbers in Crawlerling). Even aggravated damage may be healed this way, but at the cost of two points of Gnosis rather than one, per lost Health level. This Gift can be used in all forms, and is the only way to truly heal in Crawlerling. The time it takes to heal depends mostly on availability of spiders, insects and fresh human flesh, but at most one health level per turn can be healed this way.[C]
● Blood Pump (Level Three General Ananasi Gift): Though this Gift removes the usual limitation of how much blood to spend, the limitation of not spending blood and Gnosis in the same round still apply. However, the user may spend blood in the same turn as activating this Gift.[I]
● Spinnerets (Level Three General Ananasi Gift): Aside from creating a large and extremely powerful web in any shape and while being in any form, the webs produced by this Gift manifests instantly, anywhere the Ananasi can see.[I]
● Wyrmling Kinship (Level One Hatar Gift): Most vampires may technically be Wyrm-creatures, but this Gift does not make them view an Ananasi as an ally as vampires are far to individualistic and do not serve the Wyrm directly. But it will on the other hand make most think of the Ananasi as a fellow Kindred or Kuei-Jin given the slightest excuse to do so.[I] Banes tend to mistake an Ananasi with this Gift for fellow Banes if encountering them in their Pithus form in the Umbra (independent of that, Banes will still likely view the Ananasi as an ally).[I]
● Image of the Great Mother (Level Five Myrmidon Gift): Only Ananasi loyal to Queen Ananasa, and at least somewhat in her favor can use this Gift. Queen Ananasa does not like this Gift being used flippantly and will always ask any of her children using this Gift to perform a special task afterwards. Calculate movement and jumping in this form the same way as for Hispo. Biting (including venom) is like in Pithus.[I]
● Minor Unweaving (Level 2 Viskr Gift): The Ananasi must detect the magical effect in order to try to unweave it. She must however not know anything else about it in order to try to unweave it. This also apply to the more powerful versions of this Gift.[I]
Ananasi usually learn Rites from older Ananasi, especially from the Viskr Faction, who often know many rites, but Queen Ananasi can also teach Rites to her children.[I]
Assume that Ananasi have the equivalents of all Garou Mystic rites, except for Baptism of Fire and Rite of the Totem. No rites is required to acknowledge renown or ranks among the Ananasi, they have no Caerns, and are not as social as most other Fera, and so most other types of rites makes no sense for the werespiders. But they do have their own version of Breath of Gaia (called Breath of Ananasa), as well as their own version of Rite of Cleansing.[C]
However, there are a few Rites that will be given to all Ananasi, such as Tapping Anasa's Wisdom or Guardian.
Rite of Spinning: After explaining what an Ananasi is, the first thing a Damhàn mentor or Queen Ananasa teaches a young spiderling is this rite. All Damhàn know this rite for free, even if they are unable to perform it if they do not posses any dots in Occult (without assistance of a more experienced Ananasi).[I]
Character Traits Edit
Usually just replace the word Garou with Ananasi, Rage point with Blood point, Crinos with Lilian, Hispo with Pithus, and being a Lupus with being an Arachnid. Otherwise most traits works just as well for Ananasi as they do for Garou.[I] Ananasi are not concerned with Auspice and Tribes (Aspect and Faction instead), Rage (use Blood instead) and packs. Note that the Crawlerling form is very different from the Lupus form, and so, they share very few traits. Special concerns below.
Primal-Urge: Despite their somewhat detached natures, Ananasi actually do have just as much instincts as other shapeshifters.
Animal Ken: Ananasi may lack Rage, but without this Skill, they have just as hard time dealing with animals as a werewolf would have, because animals still feel the alien nature of the Ananasi.
Crafts: It is entirely possible to use this Skill to craft things out of the webs an Ananasi can produce, from fine silk to rope bridges to devious traps.
Expert Knowledge: Wyrm Lore, Kindred Lore, Kuei-Jin Lore and Ovid Lore are of special interest for the Ananasi, depending on their interactions, and many posses one or more of them.
Ananasi do not utilize Ancestors, Pure Breed or Totem (Damhàn gain Queen Ananansi as a personal Totem for free).
Fetish: Ananasi use the term Fylfot. They tend to be unique, created by trapping spirits rather than negotiating with them, and they do not create Fylfot weapon.
Kinfolk: Kinfolk don't represent spider-Kin for Ananasi. Partly as they would be almost useless, and partly as the Ananasi rarely care for their spider Kinfolk, or if they do, manage to tell them apart from other spiders. The background always represent human kinfolk.[I]
Merits and Flaws Edit
No Merit or Flaw written for werewolves can be taken if it has anything to do with Frenzy, Rage rolls, Garou society (packs, camps, tribes, Caerns, etc.), totems, wolves, battle scars, empathy, impatiens, missing body parts, the moon or the Glabro or Lupus form.[C]
Venomous (3-pt Merit): Unlike other Ananasi, whom only have small venom sacs in Homid and Lilian (and Araenid, if you got that form), you retain the full size and potency size of your venom sacs those forms, and so can inflict the full undiluted dosage of her venom when you injects it. In these forms you may also use any venom-based Gifts that are normally reserved to other forms. The bite itself does not however do more damage.[E]
[C]. Compromise. Different rules contradict each other. If followed by one reference, this source contradict each itself. If followed by several, the newest leave out to much information to be used alone.
[I]. Inference. Never stated, but based on logical assumptions. If followed by a reference, the inference is primary based upon that source.
[E]. Errata. Contradicts other rules. Replace original text with this.[WP]. Wikipedia article reference link.
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 WtA: Breedbook Ananasi
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 WtA: Players Guide (1st Edition), p. 174-179
- ↑ 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.19 3.20 3.21 3.22 3.23 3.24 3.25 3.26 WtA: Changing Breeds (CB20). Ananasi: p. 56-69. Building a Beast: p. 207-255. Kumo: p. 274-275
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 WtA: Hengeyokai: Shapeshifters of the East, p. 72-77
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 MET: Laws of the Wild: Changing Breeds: 3, p. 7-91
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 WtA: 20th Anniversary Edition (W20), p. 400-401
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 WtA: Players Guide (2nd Edition), p. 131-137
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 WtA: Players Guide to the Changing Breeds. Ananasi: p. 42-52. Laws of the Jungle: p. 159-175. Kumo: p. 190-192
- ↑ MET: Hengeyokai, p. 64-71
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 10.2 A World of Darkness (Second Edition), p. 36-37
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 11.2 VtM: Storyteller's Handbook (Revised edition), p. 135-150
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 WtA: Umbra (Revised edition), p. 60