Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Worlds Apart now a PWYW pdf at OBS

Worlds Apart, my take on a fantasy version of Mongoose's version of Traveller, is now a Pay What You Want product at OBS.

This is my first test to see how PWYW does with a older (2.5 years) product that has a few supplements. I'm hoping it gets the game into more people's hands, I'll get tipped a bit for the core rules, and people will pick up the supplements to enhance the experience. We'll see how it goes.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Meet Avit - The 1st character in the 2nd Edition of Sorcery & Super Science!

Just finished creating the first character for the ICONS powered 2nd Edition of Sorcery & Super Science!, so I thought I'd share. This is unedited, but I'm too excited to wait to show you all what's going on with character creation.
Character Creation Example
I’m going to be a player in a Sorcery & Super Science! game so I need to roll up a character. I get my pair of hand-carved antler dice, a piece of paper, my trusty Palomino Blackwing 602 pencil (yeah, I’m a pencil aficionado) and away we go!

Phase 1: Origin
I roll 2d6 on the Origin table and get an 8. I’m a Master Mutant! This means that all my mutations are increased by +1 level after I roll for them, after I roll my mutations I get to choose two bonus Mutations at Average (4) level or add two Extras, I get to increase one of my Attributes by +1 (to a maximum of 8), and all my Marginal Successes when using my mutations are treated as Moderate Successes. Sweet! I’m going to be the “Best of the best, Sir!” when it comes to muties below the shattered moon.

Phase 2: Attributes
Next, I roll six times on the Attribute Table and I get the following levels for my new character’s attributes:

Exceptional (6)
Exceptional (6)
Good (5)
Good (5)
Average (4)
Poor (3)

I rolled pretty well and it looks like I’ve got a combat-oriented character ‘a brewing. As a Master Mutant, I get to up one of my attributes by +1 level, but I’m going to wait until I have an fully-fleshed view of my new character so I can put that bonus where it would best benefit the concept.

Phase 3: Mutations
The bread and butter for a Master Mutant, I hope I roll high on this one. But I don’t. I roll a 5 and get 3 Mutations. Time to switch to a different pair of dice: the antler ones have obviously lost the mojo they had when rolling for Attributes. With my new pair of Baltic amber dice in hand, I roll on the Mutation Type tables, then the individual sub-tables, and then on the Attribute Table to determine the level of each of my three mutations. Factoring in my +1 level to all my mutations because I’m a Master Mutant, this results in:

Fast Attack
Exceptional (6)
Remarkable (7)
Good (5)

Not a bad trio! Coupled with my high physical attributes, Blast and Fast Attack confirm that I should focus on a combat-oriented character, and Precognition will give be a tactical advantage to help me know when to avoid combat. It’s nice to always have a ranged attack: a big bonus. As a Master Mutant, I can choose two more Mutations or Extras for the one’s I’ve already got. First I’m going to think a bit about my character and then get back to that.

Given what I’ve generated, I think I’m going to go with a mutated animal concept. The first thing that popped into my head was an armadillo (those buggers can claw pretty quickly) so I’m running with that. With the mutated armadillo concept in my head, I choose Average (4) Damage Resistance (armadillos have leathery armor shells), and Average (4) Burrowing. These two allow me to fight better and run away better.

Since I have Blast, I need to decide what kind. I think my character has a long armored tail with a bulbous end, sort of like an ankylosaurus, except it’s composed of many small rock-like projectiles that I can launch with a quick flick. This results in my full mutation list looking like this:

Fast Attack
Exceptional (6)
Remarkable (7)
Blast (Bashing)
Good (5)
Resistance (Damage)
Average (4)
Average (4)

Now that I know my mutations, I assign my +1 level Attribute bonus to my Coordination, upping that to Remarkable (7). I’m remarkably agile and quick. Which again, if you’ve ever encountered an armadillo, they are surprisingly so.

Phase 4: Skills
A quick roll on the Number of Skills table generates 4 skills (my amber dice are doing their job), and I’ve already spoken with the GM about random or chosen skills: we’re going with random. Four quick d66 rolls later and I’m Skilled in:

Advanced Technology
Sleight of Hand
Primitive Hand-to-Hand Weapons

My wee armadillo character obviously had an unusual background. Perhaps he grew up in an isolated vault-type environment, but had to leave for some reason?

Phase 5: Description
I’ve basically worked up a description of my character already, but I need to put some polish on it. The character is a mutated armadillo with a bulbous tail, raised in a self-contained, underground, experimental genetics lab. The A.I. that ran the lab eventually ran out of power and the entire lab shut down. All of the creatures within would have perished were it not for the burrowing ability of the character, who was able to slowly work his way through a thick duraplast hatch.

Given this background, I’m going to name him AVIT, short for Armadillo, Strain V, Line I, Modification T. He’ll go by Avit. Avit learned about Advanced Technology and Computers from the A.I. learning pods, and picked up Sleight of Hand and Primitive Hand-to-Hand Weapons once loose upon the surface.

Phase 6: Qualities, Determination, and Stamina
Now that Avit is almost finished, it’s time to look towards his background and character for three Qualities. First, I think “A Rock and a Hard Place” would be a good quality: he’s been there before and will probably be again. Secondly, “The Best Offense is a Good Defense” should play well with his leathery armor and penchant for burrowing away from danger: he’s just as much a runner as a fighter. Finally, “Return to Eden” shows that he wants to find another place like his sunken vault, where life is safe and good.

Avit has 1 Determination (6 -6 mutations -1 Attribute above 6), and he has 8 Stamina (5 Strength + 3 Willpower).

All in all, Avit is a character that fights well, but also one not adverse to running away and hiding. He’s short on the Willpower component, but if he falls into with the right group of muties, he will definitely be an asset and a good friend.

Phase 7: Languages & Equipment
With a Good (5) Intellect and subject to the A.I. learning pods, I decide that Avit knows English, Spanish, and French and is literate in all three. The GM may decide that is too much of an advantage and make me “sacrifice” a language. Such a ruling would be fine by me.

Avit left the vault with many Tech items, but he’s managed to go through all of them (and had the remainder stolen), so he only has the normal choices when it comes to starting Equipment. I’ve got 200 bv. to equip him, but the GM has already told me to wait until we all meet for the first time to determine our equipment. She wants to let all of us have equipment that’s suitable to the terrain we’re in, so I’m guessing that we’re going to be someplace climatically harsh. Perhaps the Southwestern deserts, the Southeastern swamps, or the cold Northeastern lands.

Phase 8. Game Master Approval
When we finally meet, the GM nixes my three languages with three literacies and makes me “sacrifice” one language to keep English and Spanish with literacy in both, which is what I expected. She also tells us that, yep, we’re the Southwestern desert alright as we’re all meeting up in The Lucky Duchy, so time to look over that equipment list with an eye towards the hot environment…

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Sorcery & Super Science! 2nd Edition

I've decided to go with Steve Kenson's excellent Icons rule-set for Sorcery & Super Science 2nd Edition. I've done a lot of work on S&SS! for FASRIP, but I just wasn't feeling the love that I need to feel, and Icons has brought that to the table.

I'm 8,500 words into it and loving every minute. Fast and fluid, I'm really looking forward to diving into the critters. I'm almost done with character creation and it's really coming together. If things go as planned, I'm thinking S&SS! 2nd edition will be our first color project. Here's hoping things go as planned!

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