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Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018



I have not been adding anything, but I don't vouch for either translations or complete accuracy, the esoteric stuff goes beyond my own studies. That said, it is way better even with inaccuracy than any other X of the East supplement I know of.

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sexpig by night
Sep 8, 2011

Endorsed by:
Pentecoastal Elites!
fart_man_69!
Terminal autist!
Ruzihm!
Judakel!
Dixon Chisholm!
Nix Panicus!
Neurolimal!

Yea Dragons is seen as one of the best 'it's like (game) BUT WITH ASIA' because the people, you know, researched the cultures a decent amount and made a strong effort to show that the 'Asia' we think of is actually a combination of generations of vastly different people developing right in eachother's back yards, for better or for worse. It's one of those things where liberties are taken, but the core history and culture is respected, and that's what's important.

As usual, in WoD Mage gets the lion's share of awesome poo poo.

Wapole Languray
Jul 4, 2012



With a new thread, I return for a new beginning. Again. See, last thread I did Talislanta... it sucked. Turns out nobody gave a poo poo and it was boring to write about. See, it REALLY doesn't translate into a good thread post and just got lovely so I dropped it. But, I've returned to do an RPG I have fallen in LOVE with, but am still getting a handle on. I'm going to start posting a write-up of Monsters and Other Childish Things tomorrow, if that's cool with everyone. Tollymain did two posts on it last thread, but that was ages ago and I think it's safe to call it abandoned. If he, or anyone else, doesn't want me to, cool, if not, then the first post will go up tomorrow.

Just saying this because I do love these threads, and I want to do everything I can to avoid accidentally spamming them up.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




I liked the Talislanta stuff quite a lot, actually. I think it's right up there with Glorantha and Tekumel as great alternatives to D&D which are so rich, it's harder to get into them.

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.




Grimey Drawer

I thought the Talislanta stuff was a little dry, but still interesting. I don't think I actually said that during the last thread, probably out of sheer laziness, so I'm sorry for not being encouraging, but it's definitely better to write about something you're interested in. Honestly, I had the same trouble with Lancer's Rockers.

Wapole Languray
Jul 4, 2012



Thanks for the encouragement. I do love the Talislantan setting, it's just that it translates horribly into the F&F style of review. See, the "Guide" part is written like an in-universe travel guide, and me reproducing it just kills the atmosphere the book builds. What's actually a really interesting look into this utterly alien culture, becomes very un-fun to write, because It is very formulaic and fixed in nature. When you boil the setting down to the essentials it sounds very derivative, while doing it justice would require me basically copy-pasting the book. I'm glad to hear people liked them, but it was just not an interesting thing to write about, because I was fighting the urge to tell people to read the book every post.

Monsters is going to be MUCH more fun, due to the overall more comedic nature of the book and the relative shortness of it, as well as the fact that is VERY little known and that is a crying shame because it's one of the best RPG's I've ever seen. If I get done with it I'm probably going to do the two sourcebooks I own as well, The Dreadful Secrets of Candlewick Manor and Bigger Bads. So, keep an eye out for that tommorrow!

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.




Grimey Drawer

Ooh, Candlewick Manor! I've always meant to get my hands on that, after delighting myself with Doctor Jester's Phantasmagorical Automatic Freak Machine.

El Estrago Bonito
Dec 17, 2010

Scout Finch Bitch


Tatum Girlparts posted:

Yea Dragons is seen as one of the best 'it's like (game) BUT WITH ASIA' because the people, you know, researched the cultures a decent amount and made a strong effort to show that the 'Asia' we think of is actually a combination of generations of vastly different people developing right in eachother's back yards, for better or for worse. It's one of those things where liberties are taken, but the core history and culture is respected, and that's what's important.

As usual, in WoD Mage gets the lion's share of awesome poo poo.

My friend is getting his degree in a religious history field and wants to become a Rabbi. He claims that Demon: The Fallen is actually exceptionally well researched when it comes to Jewish demonology and angels. Also I remember the Old West version of Werewolf being pretty well researched as well.

Wapole Languray
Jul 4, 2012







Do you remember being a kid?

I'm sure you do. You remember waking up early on Saturday mornings, and sitting in front of the T.V. With a big bowl of Diabetic Crunch to watch 3 hours of toy commercials. You remember opening presents on Christmas morning, and getting that Video Game you always wanted, or that Mega Deluxe Barbie Beach-house, or maybe that was the first day you met Spot the Retriever and you loved him forever and were bestest buddies. You remember sitting next to your best friend Keith in Mrs. Picken's English class, passing notes about how Suzy Lubens was an ugly butt, but you didn't really think so and just did that cause you didn't want Keith to think you were a wimp. Yeah, you remember being a kid.

Now, do you really remember being a kid?

Do you remember that time Ryan got you in a full nelson and slammed your face into the locker till your nose bled, but you had to tell the Teacher you tripped and fell 'cause being a Snitch is the worst thing ever? Do you remember the time Becky, the prettiest girl in school, called you a fat ugly whore and you hid in the bathroom and cried for half an hour? Do you remember when Spot got hit by that car while you were walking him alone, but your parents blamed you and spanked and grounded you even though you were the saddest ever?

Do you really remember being a kid? Being powerless, inferior, wrong, stupid. All the time. Always. Nobody listens to you. Nobody cares what you say. Everyone is mean, and cruel and stupid. Younger kids are annoying and dumb, older kids are mean and dumb, your parents are embarassing and dumb, your teachers are evil and dumb, and it's hard and nobody understands.

Being a kid sucks.

Or it would, if you didn't have your Monster. Now if Ryan tries to touch you Glorbag is going to swallow him whole and chew up his bones. Now if Becky makes fun of you Glitterwing is going to tear that stupid perfect hair right out of her scalp. Now if your parents ground you, Mr. Wiggins can teleport you right out of your room and into the Mall.

Your Monster is big. He's scary. He isn't from this plane of existence. He gives other people panic attacks whenever they see him. He shrugs off bullets like spitballs. He breaks the laws of physics just by existing. He is a shambling, inhuman, horror from beyond the borders of reality whose very presence warps the universe like a lead weight on a soggy paper-towel.

He's your best friend in the entire world.


“I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to eat him.”
“Well, you did! Now what are we going to do?”
“Well . . . skip dinner, for one thing. I couldn’t eat another bite.”
“This isn’t funny.”
“It’s a little bit funny.”
“When they find out Dad’s boss got eaten, Dad is going to get fired, and then we’re going to have to move into a cardboard box behind the Sip’n’Dash, and I’ll have to share my corner of the box with Janie because we won’t be able to afford a box big enough for me to have my own space anymore!”
“You said that all in one breath.”
“I can swim all the way across the pool in one breath.”
“That’s pretty awesome. We should go swimming.”
“OK, but—hey! You distracted me!”
“I just want you to be happy. You worry about swimming all the way across the pool and BACK again in one breath, and let me worry about your Dad’s boss.”
“How? How are you going to fix this?”
“OK, give me a second . . . SMUUUUUUUUURGUAH! There.”
“That . . . how . . . Mr. Wilkins?”
“Sure! Ever since I kicked the crap out of Chameleon Pete last week, I can turn into anything I want.”
“No kidding! So like . . . you could turn into Miss July?”
“Easy peasy, my friend. Just let me eat her up, and I’m your dream girl.”
“Ah. . . . We’ll put that one on the ‘Maybe Later’ shelf, right?”
“Right.”
“Let’s get back downstairs before Mom starts worrying her meatloaf is cold.”
“I shudder to think of your mother’s meatloaf.”
“You just ate a full-grown CPA! With ballpoint pens and shoes and wallet.”
“He tasted like salty hot dogs.”
“I’m gonna barf.”


Welcome to Monsters and Other Childish Things.

Wapole Languray fucked around with this message at 04:18 on Apr 17, 2013

Pththya-lyi
Nov 8, 2009

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2020

Hooray! This is one of my favorite games I've never gotten to play. Someone made the attempt to review this in the last thread, but never got far. Good luck with this one!

Tasoth
Dec 12, 2011


I know I am supposed to be typing up my review and doing drawings for it, but if you want any monsters drawn for M&OCT, let me know. That was everyone's favorite part when I ran it and they all were excited when I offered to draw their monsters for them as keepsakes.

Green Intern
Dec 29, 2008

Loon, Crazy and Laughable



A friend of mine picked up a copy of Monsters and Other Childish things, and I'm hoping to get to play a session at some point. It looks like a really awesome mix of heavy subject matter with a light tone.

Pththya-lyi
Nov 8, 2009

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2020

Tasoth posted:

I know I am supposed to be typing up my review and doing drawings for it, but if you want any monsters drawn for M&OCT, let me know. That was everyone's favorite part when I ran it and they all were excited when I offered to draw their monsters for them as keepsakes.

Angels.

You know how whenever an angel appears to people in the Bible, the angel tells the mortal(s) not to be afraid? Angels are scary as gently caress. When I finally get to play this game, I'm going to play an evangelical Christian kid whose monster is literally her guardian angel: flaming sword, shining shield, terrifying gaze, the works.

jadarx
May 25, 2012


I love the little fiction bits with conversations between the kid and his monster. The ones where they discuss some topic that the neither of them really understand because the kid is too young and the monster is not of this world are the best.

Green Intern
Dec 29, 2008

Loon, Crazy and Laughable



Pththya-lyi posted:

Angels.

You know how whenever an angel appears to people in the Bible, the angel tells the mortal(s) not to be afraid? Angels are scary as gently caress. When I finally get to play this game, I'm going to play an evangelical Christian kid whose monster is literally her guardian angel: flaming sword, shining shield, terrifying gaze, the works.

I think you can do better.

Check out the actual descriptions of different angels within the heierarchies: Burning wheels, multi-headed monstrosities, exploding suns. They're absolutely terrifying in their majesty.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



The storm has a name... - Let's Read TORG


Part 2: The Other Basics

With the pile of backstory shoved aside for now, let's look at the core mechanics.

At first glance, TORG uses a standard stat+skill+d20 system. But the fact of the matter is a little more complex...

quote:

Because Torg uses a unique system to translate back and forth between the game and the real world, we've created terms to distinguish game numbers from "real" numbers. A value refers to a quantity measured in a way which can be used in the game, such as a Strength of 11. A measure is a measurement from the real world, such as "150 pounds." Measures can sometimes be translated into values, and vice versa, but that is a task for the gamemaster. For instance, the gamemaster has a way to find out whether a Strength value of 11 is enough to lift a measure of 150 pounds.

So yeah, this is a game that's going to try and model everything mechanically.

Every character has seven attributes: Dexterity, Strength, Toughness, Perception, Mind, Charisma, and Spirit. Torg uses preconstructed templates for character generation, and attributes run the range from 8 to 13, with 10-11 being average.

In addition, there are just over 50 skills in the core book (later books would add more), ranging from the basics like Lock Picking and Fire Combat to more esoteric things like Space Vehicles and Alteration Magic. Skill ranks are called adds and are added to one specific attribute when rolling. Every skill is assigned a specific attribute.

Every character has a tag skill, which starts at 3 adds. This is the character's "signature skill". For example, the Core Earth Intrepid Reporter's tag skill is persuasion, but the Contract Ninja from Nippon Tech has martial arts as his tag skill.

When a character is created, they get the three adds in their tag skill and an additional 13 adds to put in whatever skills they want. The only limitations are that you can't start with more than three adds in a skill (so you can't bump your tag skill up any further), some skills are unavailable to start with depending on your home cosm, and you have to put at least one add in the reality skill.

Reality is probably the most important skill on your sheet, because it's the skill that allows you to maintain connection to your home reality. Really, it's the fact that you have the reality skill in the first place that makes you a storm knight.

When you want to do something in Torg, you roll a d20. This roll is open-ended; if you roll a natural 20, then you roll again and add. In addition, if you've got ranks in the skill you're using, you also reroll and add on a 10. So if you're using a skill you have adds in, and you roll a 20 then a 10 then a 10 then a 4, that's a 24.

Now you'd think you'd just add that number to your attribute and skill, then compare that to a difficulty number. And you'd be almost correct. In Torg, you don't add the roll to your skill; you look it up on the Bonus Chart.


That chart is on the bottom of the character sheet, because you're going to use it every time you roll the die. The top row is the result of the die roll, the bottom is the bonus number.

See, TORG works on a logarithmic scale. You'll notice that in the 15-20 die roll range, numbers line up one-for-one. But as you get higher die rolls, the bonus increases at a slower rate.

Once you roll the die, you look that number up on the Bonus Chart, and the bonus number is what gets added to your skill. If you meet or beat the difficulty value of the task, you succeed. The difficulty is set by the GM for unopposed tasks and is usually an NPC's skill rank for opposed tests. If you're attacking someone, you also add the bonus number to your weapon's damage rating, but we'll get to that later.

Let's say I'm trying to climb something. I have a Strength of 8, two adds in climb for a total skill rating of 10. I roll the die and get a 17. Looking that up on the bonus chart gives me a bonus number of 4. Adding that to my skill gets me a final action total of 14. Simple! :eng101:

And believe me, that's the easiest the mechanical bits will be around here. Fair warning.

Now let's say you roll a 6 and are in a situation where you can't afford to fail. That's where possibilities come in.

I mentioned last time that in TORG, "Possibilities" are a form of energy. Every living being has at least one "Possibility Ppoint", which is what ties them to their reality. A person who's only capable of holding one Possibility Point at a time is called an "Ord" by the High Lords. Ords can unconciously spend that one point to generate a change in their life, and that point will eventually be replenished by their cosm, but ultimately they can only hold one Possibility at a time.

Storm Knights, on the other hand, can hold more than one Possibility at a time. Not only that, but they can use these Possibilities to bend reality in their favor. This is referred to as being "possibility rated". Every character starts with 10 Possibilities, and get more as the game goes on.

The main mechanical use of Possibilities is to get rerolls. After rolling the die, you can spend one (and only one) possibility to get a reroll. This reroll is added to the original roll, can still explode, and as a bonus if the first bonus roll is always considered to be at least a 10. Which is nice, that way you don't really waste the roll.

Example: Jake Silver is driving a jeep and attempting to lose a Nile Empire patrol. The GM says Jake needs to beat the trooper's driving skill of 12 to get away. He makes a land vehicles roll with his skill of 12, and rolls a 6, which is a -5 on the Bonus Chart for a total of 7. Jake spends a possibility and rolls again, this time getting a 3. This is treated as a 10, which is added to his first roll of 6 for a total of 16/+3. His final result is 12+3=15.

NPCs can be possibility rated too, and the GM can spend Possibilities for them as well. Players can spend their own possibility points to cancel an NPC's point. Possibilities can also be used to counter damage.

There's one last use for Possibility Points, and I'm just going to c&p this one because this is the point where things start getting complicated.

quote:

Reality works differently between one cosm and another (see "The Axioms" later in this chapter), and possibility energy constantly flows to maintain the reality — meaning that equipment, magic, and even skills from your home cosm might not work so well in an alien cosm.

A character in a foreign cosm may spend a Possibility and cocoon himself in a "reality bubble" for 15 minutes. During that time, everything — technology, magic, etc. — works for that character as it would work in his home cosm. There are restrictions, but leave those to the gamemaster.

Example: Quin is in a "pure zone" of the New Empire of the Nile. In the pure zone of a lower tech level, his Uzi simply does not work. If he wished, Quin could spend a Possibility to make the automatic weapon work for 15 minutes. During this time, Quin's other equipment (his night scope, his antiseptic spray, his tear gas grenades)would also work.

So for 15 minutes, you get to use your character's abilities and equipment! What a bargain! Especially since, given the nature of the game, at any given point at least one PC will not be in his home cosm. This restriction also includes what we'd think of as "normal" gear, so if you're the soldier whose tag skill is fire combat and is built around using an assault rifle and you wind up in Aysle where it doesn't work, then you're going to have to either spend Possibilities or just not be able to use your rifle.

I should point out here, too, that you only get Possibilities at the end of an adventure, so they don't refresh quickly. They're also your XP so you need to be careful how you spend them during play.

So yes, this is a game where your metagame currency has multiple mutually exclusive uses. If you ever played a mage in Shadowrun, you know how much this can suck.

Next up are how to use the social skills. Charm, persuasion, and intimidate each have several paragraphs of rules on how they work. Charm is used to move people up and down a reaction table, persuasion just gets NPCs to do what you want, and intimidate can actually be used to prevent NPCs from taking actions. You can also do a Test of Wills using the taunt or trick skills to mess with other peoples' actions.

From here we go to the basics of combat. Yes, I know it feels like we're jumping around a lot, but this is the order things are presented in the book.

(And as an aside, this is a symptom of the game's need to mechanically model everything. Every game concept has a corresponding mechanical bit, and all these game concepts are interconnected. Therefore, all the mechanics are likewise interconnected and depend on each other. That means that there's no real simple mechanical "in" to the system because if I explain the skill system, I need to explain POssibilities. And to explain Possibilities, I need to explain Axioms. It doesn't help that the system explantations tend to jump around from concept to concept a lot. The whole system is one big tangle and sometimes I'm amazed I ever figured it out.)

Anyway, combat.

Combat in TORG uses group initiative. You start by determining who goes first (the heroes or villains), then the characters on that side go in reverse-Dexterity order. So if the heroes have initiative, then the character with the highest Dex goes first, then the next highest and so on until everyone on that side has acted, then you do the same for the villains.

On your turn, you get one action: attack, defend, maneuver, movement, intimidation, taunt, test of will, or trick. These are mostly pretty self-explanatory; "defend" means doing nothing this round but hunkering down, "maneuver" means getting to a more advantageous position versus "movement" which is getting from point A to point B.

It should also be pointed out that you are always assumed to be trying to defend yourself in combat if possible; the difficulty for hitting someone is the skill level of the appropriate defensive skill. So if you're shooting someone, you roll your fire combat against the target's dodge. If you want to actively defend, then you declare it before your opponents go (you can break the initiative order to do this), then you roll your defensive skill as normal, but any action result less than 1 is treated as 1. Again, this is set up so you don't completely waste a vital roll, and I like the fact that you can fully defend yourself even if you're going dead last in initiative.

And how do you determine initiative? With the Drama Deck, of course!

The Drama Deck came with the boxed set, and conisted of 156 cards that looked like this:


I'll explain what all that stuff means later, but for now we're just going to look at the top half.

The end of the card with the orange border is the initiative side, and determines who goes first, what advantages/disadvantages they get, and what the approved actions for the round are. The "S" row is for "Standard" scenes, which are normal conflicts. The "D" row is for "Dramatic" scenes, and is used for major end-of-act boss fights. The main difference is that the heroes ultimately have the upper hand on 2/3 of the S lines, but the villains have it on the D lines.

At the start of a round, the top card of the deck is flipped over and you look at the appropriate line to determine which side goes first, and what advantages or disadvantages they have. On this card, the heroes go first if it's a standard scene, but the villains are "Up", which means that everyone on that side gets one free reroll as if they had spent a Possibility. If this was a dramatic scene the heroes would still go first, but they'd suffer from "Fatigue" and automatically take two shock damage at the end of their turn.

Each card has a different set-up, with different effects like "Flurry" (everyone on that side gets two actions) or "Stymied" (everyone loses one chance at a reroll). And honestly, I really like this initiative set-up, because the added effects keep everyone on their toes and keeps people guessing about twists in the fight. It's pretty awesome to be losing then see that Heroes-first-and-get-Flurry card come up.

The side of the card with the grey border is the player's side. In addition to the 10 starting Probability Points, every character also starts with four cards in their hand. The player's side of the card has effects like giving bonuses to rolls under certain circumstances, free rerolls, or the ability to introduce a subplot. When you're out of combat, you can just play cards as you need them. So if I had that Willpower card there and was making an evidence analysis roll, then I could play the card to get +3 to my skill.

That's out of combat. In combat it works a little differently. Big shock, right?

When you're in combat, you can't just play cards from your hand. To play a card in combat, you need to add it to your pool. Every time you succeed at an action, no matter what it is, you can put a card from your hand into your pool, and from there it can be used next turn. In addition, if you succeed at one of the approved actions listed on the initiative card, you draw a card from the deck and put it in your hand. Regardless of whether or not you succeeded at the approved action, you play a card into your pool. At the end of the fight, all the cards in your pool go back to your hand.

EXAMPLE: At the start of the fight, I have four cards in my hand and none in my pool and the card up there is in play for the first round (approved actions DEFEND and TRICK). When my turn comes around, I decide I want to attack someone. If I succeed, then I can play a card from my hand into my pool, and I can use that card in my pool whenever it's appropriate. If I had decided to trick someone instead and I succeeded, I'd also draw one for my hand, leaving me with four in my hand and one in my pool.

Believe it or not, this part of the system isn't that complex in motion. As long as you remember to put a card in your pool when you succeed at a roll, and draw one when you do an approved action, you're pretty much set.

There's a few more things you can do with your cards; you can play for the critical moment once per act, where you put as many cards as you want into your pool to be used immediately, you can lose cards by having bad guys perform trick/taunt/tests against you, and you can trade cards between people's pools.

So we tangented a bit there, so let's get back to combat and talk about taking damage.

There are three kinds of damage you can take in TORG: shock damage, knockout condition, and wounds.

Shock damage is recorded as a number, and if you have more shock damage than your Toughness, you're knocked unconscious.

Knockout condition is recorded as a "K" or an "O". If you have taken a "K" blow and take another "K" blow, you get two shock damage. If you have the "K" and get an "O" blow, then you're knocked unconscious.

Wounds are serious damage, and has four ranks: wounded->heavily wounded->mortally wounded->dead. Every time you take a wound you move up one level on that ladder. Mortally wounded character will die without immediate attention, but dead characters are dead on the spot.

When you beat someone's defense (armor is a flat add to defense), you take the action value of your attack and compare it to this table:


Let's say I'm attacking someone Possibility-rated with a defense of 9, and I get a final total of a 12. That's a hit, so I look up a 12 on the chart there. I deal a wound, a K, and 5 shock.

(This is where the "glass ninja" thing comes from: when someone has a really high defense, you have to roll a really high number to hit them. However, damage isn't determined by how much you hit them, it's determined by your final action total. So if I'm fighting someone with a dodge skill if 15, I'd need at least a 15 to hit them, which means at minimum I'm going to be doing 3 wounds, a KO, and 5 shock. In other words, if I manage to kit Mr. Dodgy Pants, I'm going to kill him.)

You can spend possibilities to reduce incoming damage as follows:

quote:

A player may spend a Possibility to reduce the damage his character takes from the current blow. Each Possibility may do three of the following:
1. Remove three points of shock damage from the blow.
2. Remove a knockout condition from the blow.
3. Remove a knockdown result.
4. Remove one level of wound.
A player may spend one Possibility to reduce damage from a single blow. The Possibility is spent after the blow is taken. Cards that act as Possibilities may be spent in excess of one.
Yes, that's complicated.

At the end of a scene, all the cards in your pool go back into your hand, and you discard back down to four cards. You can then discard one card if you want, then you fill your hand back up to four cards. Cards carry over between sessions (which is why they're numbered), and there are three special cards that don't count against your hand size:
  • Subplot cards like "Romance" or "Mistaken Identity", which cause said subplots to be created and reward you with extra Possibilities at the end of the act.
  • Alertness, which lets you notice a clue everyone else missed.
  • Connection, which means you have a contact or ally nearby.
When you get one of these cards, you let the GM know and he's supposed to bring these up on his own. They don't count against your hand size, and are always considered to be in your pool.

There are other cards too, of course. Some let you perform actions like escaping from combat for free, others act as free Possibilities. But I'm not going to get into them here because this is getting ridiculous enough as it is.

Oh, leveling up. You increase your stats and skills by permanently spending Possibilities. Buying adds in a skill costs the rank you're buying up to (so going from +2 to +3 costs 3 Possibilities), buying a new skill costs 2 Possibilities if you can find a teacher, 5 if you're teaching yourself. Increasing a stat works like increasing a skill, but at triple cost (so going from a 10 Dexterity to an 11 would cost 33 Possibilities.


That, in a nutshell, is the first three chapters (26 pages) of the book. Character creation and advancement, doing things, combat, and the Drama Deck. And again, you can see how heavily intertwined all the rules are. Individually, things like the cards and Possibility Points are simple, but when they start interacting then I have to bounce back and forth and I feel like I'm coming off like a crazy person as I describe this stuff. I don't know how you guys are going to follow all this. Hell, I'm not sure I can follow it, and I wrote it.

Like I said, I like the card mechanics. I like the way initiative is handles with regards to sudden boosts or drawbacks you don't see coming, and for players they act like Aspect-less Fate points, giving the players a little narrative control or a little "oomph" when they need it. But goddamn if they're not presented terribly.

For those of you who are still paying attention, you'll notice how there's kind of the seeds of the Fate system in there; Possibilities are very similar to Fate Points, and the damage mechanics are similar to Fate's if you ignore the K-O bullshit. Yet another reason why I'd love to see a Fate Core version of TORG.

But again: we still haven't gotten to the GM's section yet.


NEXT TIME: GMing this motherfucker.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




And they used the same system for a Tales from the Crypt RPG. Yep, yep.

citybeatnik
Mar 1, 2013

You Are All
WEIRDOS





Green Intern posted:

I think you can do better.

Check out the actual descriptions of different angels within the heierarchies: Burning wheels, multi-headed monstrosities, exploding suns. They're absolutely terrifying in their majesty.

I reckon the terrifying gaze mentioned is taken to a whole new level when you realize that there's eyes in the spaces between the eyes covering the angel.

Always liked that line from Supernatural. "In Heaven I have six wings and four faces, one of which is a lion."

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018



oMage: Dragons of the East

Wizards, finally! They have many names in Asia: Namebreakers, Lightning People, Chi'n Ta. To the shen, they are wise but their wisdom hides danger to crush the unwary. Until recently, though, the four primary magical societies of Asia kept in a rough harmony. The Akashic Brotherhood ceaselessly promoted its philosophies, the Wu Lung fought them to keep Chinese culture dominant in Asia, the Wu-Keng appeased the Yama Kings with secret rites and personal sacrifice, and the Five Metal Dragons preserved science and helped the Sleepers. Now, however, the balance is lost. The Metal Dragons run rampant in a broken world, the Akashic Brotherhood struggles merely to survive, and the Wu Lung are forced to seek aid from their ancient foes thanks to the maiming of the Wall. In Hong Kong, war between shamanic sects is imminent, and the Wu-Keng seem to be on top...or about to be destroyed. But still, there is hope. Peasant sorcerers are reclaiming the past, not for war of ideologies, but to enforce a spiritual peace.

Wizard history begins in the First Age. To Hindu mystics, it was when existence merged with Brahman and Shiva waited for the world to come forth from his navel. To the Chinese, it was Pangu, whsoe body is the cosmos. Cosmic eggs, primordial chaos and ancestral sacrifice are common images for the First Age. A few sorcerers even speak of a time before it, when a previous world healed its wounds to return to the infinite. The Akashic Brotherhood claim to come from that realm, and Hindu and Buddhist sages speak of the time before this cycle, and of the Iron Age yet to come, when creation will suffer harm that can only be healed by returning to the infinite.

The Second Age came about when the perfect unity of the First Age split into Yin and Yang. From their opposition, change, creation and destruction began. It was then that Tiger, Phoenix and Dragon appeared, the Three Ministers. To regulate the world, they took up the duties of creation, preservation and destruction, creating the Five Elements by their interplay, and from the Five Elements the Ten Thousand Things. Unfortunately, some of these spirits turned against the world itself, devouring Chi and corrupting the spirit realms. The greatest of these were the Yama Kings, who made hells in the far corners of the Tapestry. In response, the hengeyokai, hsien and Wan Xian were created to guard the world against them.



It is then that the Awakened came into the world. They brought humanity the secrets of life and death, to provide where Heaven had failed. Sui-Jen, the Fire Bringer, Na Kua, who repaired the heavens and Fu Hsi, the Animal Tamer, all put divine power into mortal hands. These where the Sheng, the first sages, who heard Heaven's wisdom but showed discretion in sharing it.

Tiger, Dragon and Phoenix are part of the common paradigm of Asia, though they're not always given the titles used for them by the Wu Lung and Akashics. The hengeyokai, Kuei-jin and hsien have their own names; for example, the Kuei-jin refer to the Yang principle as the Scarlet Queen. Still, this Metaphysical Trinity also represents internal qualities that must be harmonized. A strong Yin influence, called Jhor by some Indian or Middle Eastern mages, can draw a mage to murder and corruption, and even the Wu Lung recognize that excessive Legalism can place you under the thrall of Phoenix. The Akashics call these forces the Sam Chien, or threefold battle, while the Wu Lung know them as the Three Ministers or Three Warring Kingdoms. The Wu-Keng are content merely to name them as they appear, but they know of the power of the three as well.

Tiger, AKA Snow Leopard or Pearly Tiger, is the Minister of Yang, of creation and chaos. Many hengeyokai bear the legacy of Tiger, full of Yang Chi and untamed life. It is said that Tiger punished the Wan Xian by denying them his pure essence, forcing these vampires to consume Yang Chi that was regulated and tainted by Phoenix. Whatever the case, the hengeyokai often war with the Kuei-jin for their spiritual corruption. Phoenix, AKA the Scarlet Queen or Garuda, brings order to the world, conveying Heaven's will and preserving Tiger's creations while regulating the destruction of Dragon. Dragon, called the Ebon Dragon by Kuei-jin, is the Minister of Destruction and Yin. He is the judge of creation, known as Yama or Hun Dun, and he purges flaws from the world so that the Great Wheel may turn unimpeded.

In the Second Age, Dragon's ministers turned against him, forsaking their cleansing duty and using their power to consume Chi rather than the imperfections of Chi. The corruption of these Yama Kings caused Phoenix to harry Dragon and bind him with Heaven's commands. Now, the Dragon of Balance is called the Wyrm or the Centipede, representing the defling forces of the world, the essence of Yomi. Some mystics argue that Dragon has gone mad and seeks to corrupt the world, but the Akashics and Wu Lung say that his servants are evil because Phoenix has bound him too tightly to act, and that were he allowed to resume his duties, he would correct them. Some Akashics even claim the evil of the Yama Kings is due to their longing for the permanence of Phoenix, and that their theft of Chi is an attempt to gain the substance that their nature and destructive power never gave them.

Sidebar: Kaja is similar to the Enochian tongue, a divine language of the Asian mages. Sorcerers struggle to learn its characters in order to gain the respect of the shen and barter with Heaven. Many mystics prefer Sanskrit or Chinese, but some of the most ancient texts on magic are in Kaja, including the Akashics' Stone Sutra and the most revered text of the Wu Lung. The Wu Lung claim that the Yellow Emperor learned Kaja from the Celestial Ministers, and because he knew its danger, he allowed his First Minister to adapt the script to a more primitive form which became the basis for written language. Others claim that Kaja is a manifestation of the Vedas' vibrations or merely an ancient language that the gods respect. Mages lack the knowledge to speak Kaja as a living language; only the Kuei-jin remember that. Instead, they use key phrases whose mystical meanings are memorized by rote. Kaja calligraphy, however, is considered mandatory for dealing with spirits or invoking Heaven's greatest powers. The gods frown on artless requests, after all.



In any case, the Sheng divided into shamans and philosophers as the Third Age began. The shamans became protectors of the people, while the philosophers became rulers modelled after the August Personage of Jade. The greatest of these was the Yellow Emperor, who learned the secret of writing. His legendary descendants turned Awakened scholars into the Wu Lung. The Five Emperors shared the arts of civilization with the people, and when primal sorcery mixed with these new philosophies, it gave the Yama Kings new tools to corrupt with. The peasant wu defended the people from the chaos of the spirit worlds, but the Wan Xian and Yama Kings tested their resolve, and dark spirits twisted the love they held for the gods.

In the Fourth Age, the vampires and shapeshifters were struck by Heaven's curse, and the Wall was raised to protect the world from spiritual interference. The peasant wu and the scholar-sorcerers became jealous of each other, and their struggles tore apart the civilization of the Five Emperors. The Yama Kings took advantage, seeding Asia with their minions. The Akashic Brotherhood, meanwhile, arose in Tibet, India and China. Native mages held them at bay for a time, but their methods of internal power became widely accepted by a people tired of godly whims. In 900 BC, the Akashayana encountered the ancestors of the Euthanatoi, and for the next five centuries, the Himalayan Wars transformed them from ascetics to warriors. During the Shang Dynasty, the combined influence of Akashics and Wu Lung left the peasant wu with few resources to fight the Yama Kings. While the noble and monastic wizards refused to acknowledge the threat, demons ravaged the people. In desperation, the most potent wu sacrificed themselves to the Yama King Ku of the Thousand Tears, turning the demons' greed away from Asia and onto themselves.

By the time of the Chou Dynasty, the Wu-Keng had fully turned from Heaven to Hell. Their powers were still used to help the people, but they no longer held any obligation to protect them from supernatural threats. In 496 BC, the Searing Wind sect of the Wan Xian attempted to seize Mount Kailas, said to be the physical remnant of Mount Meru on Earth. When the Akashic Brotherhood rose to protect their spiritual homeland, the Searing Wind made a deal with Yi Han, a Yomi-corrupted Wu Lung. This escalated the conflict into the Dragon River War. In 480 AD, Yi Han and his Wan Kuei allies made a mighty enchantment that set ten suns burning in the sky, destroying their enemies' armies with drought. In the burning, short nights, Wu-Keng sacrificial pits were filled with the bodies of both sides.

In that year, a warrior-sage named Yi appeared. He combined ancient Sheng sorcery with martial skill until then only seen in the greatest Akashics. With nine arrows, he destroyed Yi Han's magic and scattered the warriors with the aid of primal magic and a great dragon. Both the Wu Lung and Akashic Brotherhood tried to recruit Yi, but instead, he created an army of followers and trained them to fight supernatural evil. These Shih still wander Asia, and despite their origins, they treat wicked mages as mercilessly as any evildoer. Though Yi's Celestial ARmy purged the Chou of magical influence, it also weakened the dynasty, for no sorcery could protect the Chou from invasion and subversion. In the years of drought that followed, many Wu Lung abandoned the Chou to use their knowledge for others. Soon, these people, the Dolou'laoshi, quarreled with the Wu-Keng, whose peasant magic they hated. Others also grew suspicious of their motives, machines and potions.

Sidebar: From day one, the Shaolin Temple was infested with vampires and ghosts who fed on the monks' energies while seeking a very unorthodox enlightenment. Shaolin monks were noted for their poor health due to these vampiric "bodhisattvas." All this changed in 521 AD with Bodhidharma, who caused even the most enlightened of the vampires to suffer by his mere presence. They fled, overcome with shame, and he taught the monks special exercises to fight the spiritual and physical wasting they suffered. This attracted the Akashic Brotherhood, who sent several disciples to study under Bodhidharma. After he picked a successor, a flood of Akashic monks came to study in the Shaolin Temple alongside the Sleepers. Inspired by Mahayana teachings, these Kannagara vowed to accept any sentient being into the monastery. This idealistic but ultimately doomed decree allowed the Shaolin Temple to, briefly, unite the shen in a peace never before seen and never seen since.

After the fall of the Chou, the Warring States period proved a great place for new ideas. Divination, fencing and great engines of war were used on the battlefield by mages in service to feudal lords. The Akashic Brotherhood found the first Shi-Ren and converted them as well as welcoming Li-Hai, who was persecuted by the Confucian Wu Lung. The Wu Lung were split into a thousand cabals, each trying to unite China under their own ruler. In 221 BC, the Dragon Wizard Fu Xia won, using the young ruler of Qin and allies in the Dalou'laoshi to create the Qin empire, uniting the Wu Lung into a magical bureaucracy. The Burning of Books consolidated knowledge in their hands and weakened their foes. EVen the Dalou'laoshi were hard-pressed to oppose the Dragon Emperor when their primitive science was destroyed by fire.

Under the control of the Wu Lung, the following Han Dynasty became a difficult regime for others. In 190 BC, the Dalou'laoshi negotiated the Silk Accord, growing wealthy and strong by trading with the like-minded Daedaleans of Rome, and when the Akashics led by the Vajrapani Fan Fu, the Smoke Tiger, seized the Silk Road to force territorial settlement from the Wu Lung, the Stone People gave them advisors and war machines to face the Tiger Lord's armies. In 120 AD, the Infernalist Tau-tse summoned a demonic army to harry all sides and escalate the conflict. The Stone People lost face before their Western counterparts, who'd expected them to keep their end of the Silk Road secure, and after the Shi-Ren Te Kwan and Zhen Ba banished the demons, the Dalou'laoshi moved in, kicking out the Akashayana and offering tribute from Rome to the Wu Lung. This set the pattern of relationships for the three for over a thousand years.

Next time: More wizard history.

Wapole Languray
Jul 4, 2012





Introduction

First, I need to get this out of the way, Monsters and Other Childish Things (From here on called MaOCT), is one of the best written RPG's I've ever seen. Not in that it is well layed out, or clear and understandable, though it is that. It's because it is genuinely entertaining to read.

MaOCT is obviously intended as a good introductory RPG for children, and it shows. The game includes two entire chapters, written by Greg Stoltze of Unknown Armies fame, explaining what an RPG is and how to run one. The introduction chapter gives an overview of the games concept and themes (Childhood, Monsters, Growing Up, Imagination, etc.), a short summary of the game rules that points you to what pages those rules are found on in-full, and the best part by far is the sidebar. Along the sidebars for the Introduction chapter is a quick “What Is Roleplaying” guide, but written absolutely amazingly. The example of play is a kid arguing with his monster about whether Morse Code is stupid or not and the ethics of eating people, even if they are tasty. The author threatens to toilet paper and egg the house of anyone who makes fun of the reader for playing an RPG. But the best section by far is this:

”Does This Make Me a Nerd?” posted:


Let’s see. You play a roleplaying game around the table with friends, snacks, jokes and fun.
A computer gamer sits alone in his room with the lights off making CG sprites kill other CG sprites.
Yeah, who’s the nerd now?

I mean, how many RPG's actually make the effort of combating the social stigma of looking like a dorkwad? Not many my friends, not many.

Kid Creation



This is the character sheet. As you can see, there are two key points about this sheet:

1. It is one of the best examples of a character sheet fitting a game thematically I've ever seen

B. All the mechanical aspects of a character fit into half the sheet.

This is because every character, including NPC's, are defined by three things: Stats, Skills, and Relationships. That's it.

Stats and Skills

You may notice that I haven't explained the resolution mechanic yet, which normally would be a major problem in book layout, to make a character before the mechanics are explained. It isn't. They tell you about Stats and Skills first, because rolling dice is confusing if you don't know where the numbers you roll come from in the first place. Cause remember, this is for people who have never seen an RPG before!

Every human has Five stats, with three standard skills under each. You can take special skills with GM permission, which can be anything you want. The default stats and skills are:

Feet: General whole body movement
    Dodging: Avoiding stuff
    Kicking: Feet of Fury
    P.E.: Running, jumping, climbing, general athletics
Guts: Toughness, both physically, and emotionally.
    Courage: Not weeing yourself
    Wind: Health, breath, general fitness and endurance
    Wrestling: Grabbing and squeezing and grappling
Hands: Fine dexterity and movement
    Blocking: Using things to stop things from hitting things.
    Punching: Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.
    Shop: Building and breaking stuff, working with your hands, arts and crafts.
Brains: Being a big fat NERD
    Notice: Seeing stuff, especially stuff that doesn't want to be seen
    Out-Think: Problem solving and logic
    Remember: Education and memory
Face: Talking the Talk
    Charm: Be everybody's BFF
    Connive: Lie, trick, play innocent, and all those other essential kid survival skills
    Putdown: Yo Mama jokes

Pretty simple yeah? MaOTC uses the ORE engine, so it's Dice Pool time. All stats start at 1 dice, and you can spread 10 more around as you choose. Skills start at 0 die, and you get 15 to put wherever you want. No skill or stat can have above 5 dice.

Now that we have some numbers, it's time for what we do with them.

Rolling Dice

All Humans roll the same dice, stat+skill. Add together their Dice Pools, and roll that many d10s. You can't roll more than 10 dice in a roll, any extra's are used to pay for effects that remove dice from your pool.

When you roll the die, you're looking for Matches. These matches are written down in the format of Width x Height. So for example, you roll:

”7 Dice” posted:

3, 3, 2, 8, 3, 8, 2

Then you've got three matches, 2x2, 3x3, and 2x8. The first number is how many die are in the match, the second number is what the number on the die is. These are called Width and Height respectively. You need at least one match to succeed, no matches mean a failure. When you have multiple matches, or sets, like in this example, you pick one to use in the roll.

Which one do you pick? Well, it depends. A sets Width (How many die are in the set) determines how fast you do something, while the Height (The number on the die in the set) determines how well you do something. Making a baking-soda volcano for a science project? You'd probably want the 2x8, so that you have the best baking-soda volcano in the whole class. Running away from the school bully? You'll want the 3x3, because form and expertise doesn't count for much when Ryan's grinding your face into a dog turd. Roll requirements are in the form of Height. 1 is super-easy, 2 is normal, 3 is hard, and it goes up from there. This is also the baseline for determining roll effects. 2 is the bog-standard normal, anything above 2 is better, with above a 5 being incredible performance. An art project with a height of 2 is normal for your class, 3 is notably good, 8 would get you entered into the school art-show, and it'd probably win 1st place.

A special rule is Botching. When you not only get no matches, but get no dice above a 5, then you've Botched It. This means something especially crappy happens, and it's up the GM to determine what. Fail a roll to win a school race and you'll just lose. Botch it and you end up tripping and spraining an ankle.



Relationships

Welcome to the most important aspect of MaOTC. Relationships.

A Relationship is an emotional connection to something. Anything. You can have a Relationship with your Mother of course, and your best friend, but you can also have one with your teddy-bear, or your favorite pen, or your home-town. As long as there is an emotional connection, it's a Relationship. Relationships don't have to be both ways, after all, an unrequited crush is a very important form of relationship for kids! And they don't have to be [i]healthy[i]. A stalker has a relationship with their stalkee, but it doesn't mean the stalkee has to like it. Another thing is you can't have a Relationship with your Monster, because that's something else. With your monster, you have a Bond. A Bond is a Relationship that just... exists. You can never lose it, or break it, or use it. It's a representation of the totally unconditional love between a Kid and their Monster.

Otherwise, you get 6 dice to put into your Relationships. You can have as many as you want, and there's no limit to how high you can get them. Why do you want Relationships? Because they are power. If you can tie whatever test you're doing to one of your Relationships, then you can add those dice to your dice-pool.

Getting into a fist fight with Ryan the Bully? Do you remember that pep-talk your Dad gave you about how you need to stand up to bullies? You do? Great! You can add that Dad 3 relationship to get an extra 3 die to your Fists roll to slug the jerkwad.

But if you fail a Relationship boosted roll, then that relationship suffers. It gets Shocked.

A Shock reduces your Relationship by one die. This represents the tension and dissatisfaction that has arose in the Relationship. The way you un-Shock a Relationship is with Quality Time.

Ryan kicked you butt all over the playground. Dad didn't know what he was talking about! You should have run away, but you didn't, and now you have a black eye and Mom is going to yell at you for fighting! Stupid Dad.

Quality Time is a special kind of roleplayed test, with a difficulty of 4 plus the number of Shocked die in that relationship. Succeed and you get the width of the roll's worth of die back, up to the original un-Shocked number. What the roll is depends on whatever you do during Quality Time. As long as it is an activity that will reaffirm your emotional connection to the object of your Relationship, it works.
You decide to go with Dad on that fishing trip he goes on every few weeks in Summer. You're still angry at him, but when you catch that trout and he picks you up and carries you around like you're the World's Greatest Fisherman, you just don't care about that stupid fight anymore.

Sometimes people don't want you to get Quality Time, something or someone works to upset and prevent it, so that your Relationship doesn't heal. If this is the case, then the opposition rolls against your Quality Time roll. They get however many dice are Shocked in the Relationship as bonus-die added to their roll, and you get however many dice are un-Shocked in the Relationship added to yours. If their Height is better, they succeed and you fail your Quality Time.

Your horrible little brother is jealous of how much time you spend with Dad, so he conned his way into the fishing trip. He won't leave the two of you alone, and is trying to keep you and Dad from spending any time together, the little jerk.

Relationships Shocked down to 0 dice are in Crisis. To get a relationship out of Crisis, you need to accumulate a combined Width on several related Quality Time rolls to equal the full value of the Relationship. This adds 1 die to the Relationship and gets it out of Crisis. But there is a problem. Any failed Quality Time rolls while a Relationship is in Crisis permanently reduces that Relationship by 1 die. The only way to get that back is through spending XP in Character Advancement.

Relationships also have special uses for your Monster, but I'll get into those in the Monster chapter.



The last bit is Character Advancement. While playing you get XP, which is rewarded pretty much whenever the GM decides to give it to you. One to Three is normal per session. One XP buys you a Skill Die, Two gets you a Relationship Die, Three gets you a Stat Die, and Five let's you add a Die to a Monster Location (Once again, Monsters chapter, later on.)

You can only spend XP during play if something dramatically appropriate happens, IE, you find a magic orb of Kung-Fu Mastery that lets you spend XP into your Fists skill. Otherwise, you have to wait until an acceptably large amount of time passes to raise your XP, so a few weeks of downtime where there's no adventuring going on.

“You have to whisper. We’re not supposed to be here.”
“I am whispering. Wait... is whispering the quiet one?”
“Yes!”
“Sorry. I don’t understand why we’re here.”
“We have to steal back my journal from Becky before she reads it and realizes I have a crush on her.”
“I don’t get it. You were just going on for hours about how to tell her you like her. Now she’ll find out.”
“No! She can’t know... not this way. It would be weird.”
“Sneaking into her house while her family is at church is pretty weird, if you ask me. I’m not human, but still... pretty weird.”
“Just quit yakking and find the journal. Oh God, I hope she hasn’t read it yet...”
“Well, considering how busy she and her dinosaur have been trying to kill you these past few days—”
“Yeah.”
“How come you’re so hot for a girl who’s your sworn mortal enemy?”
“Won’t say.”
“Come on. How come? Is it her devious intellect? Her manipulative charm? Her murderous vengeance?”
“No.”
“What then?”
“I like her freckles.”
“That’s precious. I thought she was molting or something, but—wait. Did you hear that?”
“No. What did it sound like?”
“A little like a nine-ton rackasaurus walking tippy-toes behind us.”

Figured I'd ask here, but does anyone know where I can get a hold of a form-fillable or otherwise digital character and monster sheet for this game? I can't find any for the life of me, and they'd be really useful for something I'm planning later on.

Next Time: Conflicts

Synthbuttrange
May 6, 2007



Oh yeah.... now I remember why TORG never really took off in my group. :v:

Pththya-lyi
Nov 8, 2009

THUNDERDOME LOSER 2020

Green Intern posted:

I think you can do better.

Check out the actual descriptions of different angels within the heierarchies: Burning wheels, multi-headed monstrosities, exploding suns. They're absolutely terrifying in their majesty.

Don't get me wrong: an crazy-looking angel would be totally bitchin', but it's not what I'm going for. I'm not going so much for an "authentic" angel so much as the popular conception of an angel. When a little kid imagines heavenly guardians watching over her, she's probably thinking of pretty people with halos and wings, not "wheels within wheels" or fiery orbs. Besides, angels generally appear to Biblical witnesses as white-robed humans and they still have to calm the poor pathetic mortals down, so it's not like angels need to take on their "true" forms to scare people. The Monster's horror would come from its eerie perfection (and its inhuman understanding of humanity and morality) more than anything else.

Now, if Wapole Languray wants me to, I can stat out my dream PC and her Angel, but otherwise I'm going to let this be my last word on the matter. :colbert:

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



SynthOrange posted:

Oh yeah.... now I remember why TORG never really took off in my group. :v:

I might be getting ahead of Evil Mastermind, but you should look into the Revised and Expanded rule book WEG released a few years ago. I believe they were interested in doing a TORG 2.0 and came up with R&E instead to blow out their backcatalogue of adventure books and splats. They try and present solutions to stuff like the Glass Ninja problem. But, the best idea is to just use OpenD6 and convert the values to dice and pips.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



Young Freud posted:

I might be getting ahead of Evil Mastermind, but you should look into the Revised and Expanded rule book WEG released a few years ago. I believe they were interested in doing a TORG 2.0 and came up with R&E instead to blow out their backcatalogue of adventure books and splats. They try and present solutions to stuff like the Glass Ninja problem. But, the best idea is to just use OpenD6 and convert the values to dice and pips.

The R&E version didn't simplify things as much as just put everything in one book and add two more Everlaws.

Also, I goofed when I was talking about how damage works. When you hit, you add the bonus value to your weapon's damage, and that's the total you look up on the chart. But that doesn't alleviate the glass ninja problem, because again if you hit someone with a high defense then you probably got a pretty decent bonus, and weapon damage tends to be high anyway (an Uzi is damage value 17).

dwarf74
Sep 2, 2012






Buglord

Evil Mastermind posted:

(And as an aside, this is a symptom of the game's need to mechanically model everything. Every game concept has a corresponding mechanical bit, and all these game concepts are interconnected. Therefore, all the mechanics are likewise interconnected and depend on each other. That means that there's no real simple mechanical "in" to the system because if I explain the skill system, I need to explain POssibilities. And to explain Possibilities, I need to explain Axioms. It doesn't help that the system explantations tend to jump around from concept to concept a lot. The whole system is one big tangle and sometimes I'm amazed I ever figured it out.)
Yep, so very 90's. Earthdawn does the same goddamn thing. There basically isn't such a thing as a "metagame" unless you count the raw die rolls. Even hit points have an in-setting justification. Hit points, of all goddamn things. I'm shocked simulation-friendly folks don't lock into more poo poo like this instead of Pathfinder/3.x.

Young Freud posted:

But, the best idea is to just use OpenD6 and convert the values to dice and pips.
I dunno; I'm really liking Evil Mastermind's idea of a FATE hack. I mean, the setting is (IMO) goddamn amazing; I love the whole thing. I don't know enough about Rifts to make this claim, but talking out my rear end, it seems to me like it's a much cooler, more reasonable version of it.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



dwarf74 posted:

Yep, so very 90's. Earthdawn does the same goddamn thing. There basically isn't such a thing as a "metagame" unless you count the raw die rolls. Even hit points have an in-setting justification. Hit points, of all goddamn things. I'm shocked simulation-friendly folks don't lock into more poo poo like this instead of Pathfinder/3.x.

I dunno; I'm really liking Evil Mastermind's idea of a FATE hack. I mean, the setting is (IMO) goddamn amazing; I love the whole thing. I don't know enough about Rifts to make this claim, but talking out my rear end, it seems to me like it's a much cooler, more reasonable version of it.

I haven't done much with it, just a basic skill list and noodling with Axioms on the +4/-4 scale.

Bonus: I just found this.

Qwo
Sep 27, 2011


MAOCT looks amazing and I want it in my life right now.

Middle School me would've friggin loved it. Well, adult me would friggin love it.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



Sorry for the double post, I don't like editing multiple responses into one post.

dwarf74 posted:

I don't know enough about Rifts to make this claim, but talking out my rear end, it seems to me like it's a much cooler, more reasonable version of it.

It is, at least at the start. That's because, unlike Rifts, they actually stopped and thought about how all this stuff would interact with each other and tried to keep things balanced. You can't have a group of starting characters with both a Glitter Boy and a hobo, for instance.

sexpig by night
Sep 8, 2011

Endorsed by:
Pentecoastal Elites!
fart_man_69!
Terminal autist!
Ruzihm!
Judakel!
Dixon Chisholm!
Nix Panicus!
Neurolimal!

Qwo posted:

MAOCT looks amazing and I want it in my life right now.

Middle School me would've friggin loved it. Well, adult me would friggin love it.

My group has been gaming together, in various forms, for a long time, we've played games ranging from diceless roleplay experiences to just pure Double Dragon style beat em ups with no reason beyond 'gently caress those monsters'.

I feel confidant that if I ask any of them what's the one RPG we can bring to a deserted island for some unknown reason, MAOCT is going to be if not the answer, in the top contender spot for the answer.

It's one of those games that is just so drat charming while still managing to show why being a kid sucked too, it has such a healthy blend of whimsy and real emotion that it's really hard to not love it.

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



Evil Mastermind posted:

It is, at least at the start. That's because, unlike Rifts, they actually stopped and thought about how all this stuff would interact with each other and tried to keep things balanced. You can't have a group of starting characters with both a Glitter Boy and a hobo, for instance.

One of the best was with armor. Armor had a maximum efficiency, so those armor adds could only go so far. A guy in plate mail could have the same armor adds as a guy in wearing a Kevlar vest as does a guy in light power armor, but the guy in the high-tech light power armor is able to get more out of his armor than the guy in plate mail as well as have lessening fatigue and DEX penalties. But, in the end, he's likely not going to use that max armor value unless he's really buff to begin with.

BTW, I once wrote up a Rifts conversion for TORG/OpenD6, where I did just that. All that "mega-damage" personal armor has the potential of stopping tank and heavy weapon rounds, but most characters aren't going to reach that.

Humbug Scoolbus
Apr 25, 2008

The scarlet letter was her passport into regions where other women dared not tread. Shame, Despair, Solitude! These had been her teachers, stern and wild ones, and they had made her strong, but taught her much amiss.


Clapping Larry

TORG is a game that deserves a lot of bashing, but god I love the setting.

Also, I did not know that MAOCT was a One-Roll System game.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




Are you going to do the TORG supplements? I remember I love the concept of Pulp Cairo, but I was a little disappointed that the superpowers are just a menu of defined, set bonuses to this or that, kinda like the way Advantages in the Masterbook system were divided into Column I-IV levels.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



Halloween Jack posted:

Are you going to do the TORG supplements? I remember I love the concept of Pulp Cairo, but I was a little disappointed that the superpowers are just a menu of defined, set bonuses to this or that, kinda like the way Advantages in the Masterbook system were divided into Column I-IV levels.

I'm planning on covering all the cosm books, yes.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

Now prepare yourselves! You're the guests of honor at the Greatest Kung Fu Cannibal BBQ Ever!



Green Intern posted:

Check out the actual descriptions of different angels within the heierarchies: Burning wheels, multi-headed monstrosities, exploding suns. They're absolutely terrifying in their majesty.

For fans of angels who are also video-game fans, I highly reccomend Bayonetta. Despite being a silly Japanese action game, Bayonetta is surprisingly lore-accurate with it's depictions of angels. The angels also speak Enochian, which is pretty cool as well.

Torg. Wow, I am impressed with how bloody complicated it is, even just the die mechanic.

No Pun Intended
Jul 23, 2007

DWARVEN SEX OFFENDER

ASK ME ABOUT TONING MY FINE ASS DWARVEN BOOTY BY RUNNING FROM THE COPS OUTSIDE THAT ELF KINDERGARTEN

BEHOLD THE DONG OF THE DWARVES! THE DWARVEN DONG IS COMING!


I remembered I had this tucked away:



This is a relic from a friend of my brothers, never actually got to play it (probably a good thing). The books have been separated from the box; but they are around. I'll go searching for them later so I can follow along.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



In many ways, TORG feels like a reflection of DC Heroes, probably because Greg Gorden and Ray Winninger were leading designers on both. Both games try to measure everything in game units (APs in DCH, "values" in TORG) and use a logarithmic scale. Both games use exploding dice, although DCH uses acting stat vs. resistance on a chart instead of stat+skill. Both games use a Subplot system. And unfortunately, both have a system of bennies that can be used for either in-game bonuses or character advancement (Hero Points vs. Possibilities).

My experience with TORG, by the way, was that PCs were chronically short of Possibilities; when Dramatic scenes came up, I had to fudge quite a bit to avoid steamrollering them. That may just have been my group, though.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



Selachian posted:

Both games use a Subplot system. And unfortunately, both have a system of bennies that can be used for either in-game bonuses or character advancement (Hero Points vs. Possibilities).

My experience with TORG, by the way, was that PCs were chronically short of Possibilities; when Dramatic scenes came up, I had to fudge quite a bit to avoid steamrollering them. That may just have been my group, though.
The problem with Possibility Points is that there's no easy way to get them. You only get more at the end of an "Act" in an adventure, and even then it's maybe 3 or 4 points. An Act in an official module was four or so scenes, each of which generally had at least one fight.

So you have to spend Possibilities to reduce damage, boost bad skill rolls, and probably be able to use your abilities and gear if you're not in your home cosm. Generally speaking you're lucky if you break even sometimes. There's no "refresh" or way to get them during play unless you're lucky enough to draw a Subplot card.

Qwo
Sep 27, 2011


I just got MAOCT because of this thread, and it's so great! :3: Yog-So-Soft :3:

Wapole Languray
Jul 4, 2012



Qwo posted:

I just got MAOCT because of this thread, and it's so great! :3: Yog-So-Soft :3:

Most rad. If anybody has monster/kid ideas, I'll be making some characters after I do the Monster chapter to show off character creation. Hence, why I wanted some form-fillable character sheets. I'm trying to not make more than one post a page, so forgive if I Monster Spam, as I'm trying for a chapter a day. Remember that there are three other sourcebooks I'm doing after the corebook, Bigger Bads which is new rules and a pseudo-Monster Manual, Curriculum of Conspiracy which is a setting/adventure module type book, and Strange Secrets of Candlewick Manor, which is almost a standalone game on it's own.

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Tasoth
Dec 12, 2011


Wapole Languray posted:

Most rad. If anybody has monster/kid ideas, I'll be making some characters after I do the Monster chapter to show off character creation. Hence, why I wanted some form-fillable character sheets. I'm trying to not make more than one post a page, so forgive if I Monster Spam, as I'm trying for a chapter a day. Remember that there are three other sourcebooks I'm doing after the corebook, Bigger Bads which is new rules and a pseudo-Monster Manual, Curriculum of Conspiracy which is a setting/adventure module type book, and Strange Secrets of Candlewick Manor, which is almost a standalone game on it's own.

Oh! Oh! Monster ideas. I will supply them as drawings.

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