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Tuesday, February 20, 2018

ArcanaPunk for Index card RPG

I'm toying with the idea of a setting for Index card RPG. Inspired buy my favorite Cyberpunk settings including Shadowrun. A mix of fantastic Transhumanism as well as magical spell slinging.

The first thing to consider is how magic and machine do not mix...no matter how perfect a synthetic body is, it can't be a conduit for magic. To cast magic, you must be in a meat suit.

The classes available from Alfheim will be Guardian, shadow, priest and Mage.
The classes from Warp shell will be Ronin, Ghost, and Gunner.

Magic will work on a Spell burn mechanic like on page 69 of the core book, and a push mechanic. Using a d4 to track. But instead of rolling when spell burn hits 4 spell burn a mage can use a recovery action to move the counter down a level.  every spell cast in an encounter moves the spell burn counter up one.

Mages can push spells adding a d4 of effort to a spell per level of push. Each level of push moves the spell burn die up another step. At a maximum of 4 on the burn die. When the burn die is at maximum the character is burned out and can't cast any spells for the rest of the encounter as long as the burn die is at max. Only way to lower the spell burn level is a recovery action.

Implement and fetishes.
Mages use implements while casting, a mage implement is a wand or rod. If a wizards casts a spell without an implement its always at hard (-3).
Fetishes, these hand crafted (loot) items are linked to an individual spell. Mages must have the fetish associated with the correct spell in hand to push a spell more than once on a single casting.

Counter magic in Arcanapunk works just like the core rules, but instead of having it's own timer die it moves the spell burn counter up one.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Synth sleeves (common) Genesys Rpg

I'm putting together notes for a game I would like to run centered around a lot of transhumanism themes. I'm trying them out for the Genesys rpg.

I'm toying around with work-ups for synthetic sleeves. My first step is making "core sleeves" that can be upgraded.

TK-131 "tic tok" Alpha
This model is a basic synthetic sleeve made by Takihashi Korp. It's cheap and available on the open market. Has a limited number of legal structural upgrades available from TK. The number of cosmetic upgrades is almost limitless. Alphas are the least likely of any model to pass for meat.
Brawn (2) Agility (2)
Wound Threshold (18)
Power threshold -Strain- (14)
Two levels of skill chip set space available.
Upgrades:
Upgraded synth musculature, +1 brawn.
Upgraded stabilization cortex, +1 Agility.
Level 1 reinforced frame, +5 wound.
Level 2 reinforced frame, + 1 soak.
Power cell upgrade, power threshold +5.
One of 8 optical upgrades.

TK-231 " Brute" Beta
Created as a labor sleeve. Standing at 6' 6" these sleeves are built tough and durable. They come with all the same upgrade options of the alpha but zero cosmetic options off the showroom floor. Plenty of mod shops have packages available. Brutes almost never pass for meat.
Brawn (4) Agility (2)
Wound Threshold (30)
Power threshold -Strain- (18)
Vital system shielding Defense 1
Upgrades:
Upgraded synth musculature, +1 brawn.
Upgraded stabilization cortex, +1 Agility.
Level 1 reinforced frame, +5 wound.
Level 2 reinforced frame, + 1 soak.
Power cell upgrade, power threshold +5.
One of 8 optical upgrades.

TK-500 "Exod" XO-XDT
This is the premier synthetic. Cosmetic options are almost limitless and can pass for meat very easily. Standard with top of the line synth flesh that looks and feels like flesh in every way. Comes equiped with improved nerve clusters that can be dialed up or down to enhance or diminish the users sense of pleasure or pain.
Comes as a bare bones model to be upgraded and modified to the customers desires.
Brawn (2) Agility (2)
Wound Threshold (20)
Power threshold -Strain- (20)
4 levels of skill chip set space available.
Vital system shielding, Defense 1.
Upgrades:
Upgraded synth musculature,+1-3 brawn.
Upgraded stabilization cortex,+1-3 Agility.
Level 1 reinforced frame, +5 wound.
Level 2 reinforced frame, + 1 soak.
Level 3 reinforced frame +2 soak.
Wired reflexes, +1 Defense.
Power cell upgrade, power threshold +10.
Biogen auto repair system.
Quick up link data core interface.
One of 8 optical upgrades.

Combat maneuvers for Basic fantasy

I'm working on some optional combat maneuvers for Basic fantasy. Instead of making making generic ones I feel it would be more fun to make them more class specific. I reference stepping up or down damage dice. The step scale is d2,d4,d6,d8,d10,d12.

Cleric Maneuvers.
Inspiring strike: after rolling a successful attack a cleric can rebuke his target, stepping down his own damage die to give all other party members a +1 to hit until the start of his next turn.

Smite: after making a successful attack clerics can sacrifice a casting of a spell to step up the his damage die a number of steps equal to the level of the spell sacrificed to a maximum of d12. If the step would take the step above d12 then roll 2d12 and keep the higher of the two.

Fighter Maneuvers.
Defensive stance: a fighter can choose to step down his damage die on an attack to gain a +1 AC for himself and one ally standing very close by until the start of his next turn.

Unbalancing strike: fighters can down step his own damage die to give a +2 attack to the next attack against the same target.

magic-user Maneuvers:
Ward of protection: magic users can place a ward to protect on himself and all allies within close range. All effected allies get +2 to all saving throws against spells until the start of his next turn.

Counter spell: magic users can sacrifice a casting of a spell and save the magical energy to counter a spell. When a spell is cast against an ally/allies within close range the magic user can expend the energy allowing all effected allies of the spell to use his own spell save modified by the level of the spell saved and his own intelligence.

Thief Maneuvers:
Trickery: a Thief can down step his own damage die in an attack to step up the next attack die by an ally to attack the same target.

Vital Strike: when making a sneak attack the thief can forgo his +4 attack bonus to instead step up his damage die 1 step.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Fantasy AGE Bestiary quick review.

I recently purchased the bestiary and have finally had time to really look it over. It's 139 page book of monster goodness for the fantasy AGE game using the AGE rpg system by Green Ronin publishing.

Pages 4-124 is the bulk of the book, with just shy of 60 monsters. Each monster taking up two to three pages. Each entry has a very full description, A well layed out set of game stats, and a beautiful full color picture. The absolute best part in my opinion is the Adventure hooks. Two to three Adventure hooks per monster.

Pages 127-132 is beasts and animals. Entries from beasts of the land, sea, and air. Very well layed out.

What makes this book really shine is the focus on customization of monsters to fit the GMs needs. Pages 133-138 is all about how to do that. All about how to add qualities to customize your monsters. Page 3 has an entry for beefing up adversaries, how to make elite, heroic, and epic versions of each monster.

I really like that the Fantasy AGE bestiary has such a strong focus on Adventure hooks and customization. Great monster book, and a great GM resource.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Tattoo magic, Fantasy AGE.

Tattoo magic is fairly new in the middle lands. An art that traces it's origin to the eastern islands.

When a spell is transcribed to flesh the caster no longer needs an arcane device (which in the setting I'm running is required for most attack spells *) to cast that spell, as their flesh becomes the implement. The tattoo has to be exposed and glows with arcane power, the tattoo is used to focus or direct magic attacks making them no more or less stealthy to cast from.

Also spells cast from flesh benefit from +2 spellpower. But tattoo magic is not without its costs and limitations.

Mages must sacrifice 2 permanent magic points per tattoo. This is permanentl invested magic into the processes of getting the tattoo.

The number of spell tattoos a mage can have is equal to half their level rounded up. Any tattoos beyond that limit costs a sacrifice of 4 magic points permanently. These can never be recovered by leveling past the limit, it is cost at the time of getting the tattoo.

Spell tattoos can be costly. The time and material cost are big factors. Novice spells are often relatively simple, and journeyman spells are larger and more detailed. Master level spells are very large and can take up an entire limb, and are works of intricate art.

* In the setting I'm running Arane devices are required for any attack spell that says "from hand or arcane device" instead of being optional. In previous games arcane devices were optional but granted a +1 spell casting and +1 damage when used. These we're entirety setting rules.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Demon, Soldier Brute. Fantasy AGE RPG

Lumbering brutes who stand head and shoulders above the average demon soldiers. Often sent in small groups to soften up a defensive line or fortifications.

2 Accuracy (Brawling)
0 Communication 
7 Constitution (Stamina)
0 Dexterity 
4 Fighting (Bludgeon)
2 Intelligence
0 Perception
8 Strength (Intimidation, Might)
1 Will power (Courage)

Speed 10
Health 60
Defense 10
Armor Rating 6

Punch +4.       1d6+8
2h Maul +6.    2d6+11

Armor hide: abnormally thick hide. Magically infused, projects against attack that normally bypass armor.

Fist and Stomp: brutes are known for their superhuman strength. When not using a huge two handed maul they smash everything in their path with their fists.

Darkvision: Brute demons can see perfectly in total darkness.

Favored stunt: Mighty blow.

Bringing more narrative to your combat.

I see GMs and players complain about the "I hit it with my axe" limited view of combat. People often feel that if the rules don't facilitate a more narrative approach than it's not "part of the game".

I personally don't feel this is the games responsibility, the rules are the structure and dice are the hand of rate. Story should be facilitated by the storytellers, Both the GM/DM and players. I feel many GMs miss golden opportunities to help player to help themselves. Narrative combat makes the game more exciting, and narrative driven combat makes the GM's job easier.

The two biggest opportunities for this is during the players action, both before and after the die is rolled. These might seem like a no brainer to some, but stay with me.

Two very simple phrases GMs can use to help players get into combat as narration is "what do you do? Describe it", and "what does/did it look like?"

"What do you do? Describe it".
Before the player rolls the dice, ask the player to describe their attack. Ask for quick details about weapon swings or how the character is moving. To further facilitate narrative combat do the same with monsters and NPCs. Describe the grimace on the orcs face, the assassin's fast blade slashes, and the sneer on the city guards face as he sets his spear.

"what does/did it look like?"
Take the narrative and apply it after the roll as well. After the player rolls ask the player to describe the effects of the dice roll. Use the player's description to guide the reactions of other combatants. After the player describes jumping from the cart, while sinking his dagger into the guard smirking, describe how the other guards react. Give the characters description impact, nothing would be less rewarding and more discouraging to a player than to give an amazing description, just to be met with a none narrative reaction.

ArcanaPunk for Index card RPG

I'm toying with the idea of a setting for Index card RPG. Inspired buy my favorite Cyberpunk settings including Shadowrun. A mix of fant...