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Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Fossilized Rappy posted:

Regular knives technically have a throwing range increment in d20 Modern, but in Exodus they made another set of nearly identical stats specifically for knives meant to be thrown. And just a compound bow and not any more primitive shortbow or longbow, at least not in any of the Open Game Content books Wizards of the Coast put out. They statted up four different kinds of crossbow, though. :v:

Oh well, I suppose the shortbow does make more sense in historical or post-apocalyptic settings.

Tsilkani posted:

I'll dig them out over the weekend, then, and maybe get a couple write-ups started while I wait for you to start hitting the core. Probably won't post anything until you've at least covered the setting chapter so I can hand hooks off that.

mllaneza posted:

After I finish work on Squadron Strike:Traveller I'll find time to do a bit about Lightning Strike. That was a really nicely done tactical space combat game with giant robots and spaceships. There was also a campaign game that was basically Axis & Allies in the solar system.

Groovy *puts on shades*

Jovian Chronicles Second Edition RPG Player's Handbook


You demanded it: Jovian Chronicles, everyone!

But first a bit of backstory: When Dream Pod 9 released its currently last iteration of the Silhouette CORE (aka SilCORE) RPG rules, they bundled all the rules into a single boook, with the company's various lines getting a main setting book that had now much more place for setting information (though they did include a couple new rules here and there to better fit the setting).
This was back in 2003 (with this particular book here coming out in 2004), when the OGL ruled supreme and allowed the market to be flooded with d20 products of varying levels of quality. Naturally, DP9 wanted some slice of that d20-shaped pie, so this iteration of SilCORE was dual-statted. The core book had some short guidelines for converting characters to d20, with an optional rule that turned BAB and Defense into skills. All the other books came with further conversions for the rules, equipment and vehicles introduced. The d20 factor is also why all of the main setting books are called "Player's Handbook". There are no other handbooks.
Strangely enough, they didn't actually provide guidelines to convert SilCORE vehicles directly, instead using Guardians of Order's d20 Mecha rules (with which DP9 also released the d20-only Mecha Compendium). A bit if you ask me, seeing how vehicle creation is one of SilCORE's cornerstones.

Oh well, on to the actual book!

Chapter 1: Introduction

This chapter serves as a short summary of the setting, with some rules and roleplaying campaign bits so you know what you're getting yourself into.

The Setting

Jovian Chronicles' setting is a bit like classic Gundam, with a bit of Zone of the Enders thrown in. The default starting date is 2210+. Humanity has been colonizing the solar system for over a decade now, and the colonies have since declared independence from Earth, which was too busy with its collapsing economy to do anything against it.
Unfortunately for the colonies, Earth as recovered, and the new government isn't too happy with the current situation. Things have quickly taking on a Cold War atmosphere, with every side building up its military for an eventual war.

The standard mode of play assumes the PCs being Exo-Armor (the setting's mecha) pilots of the Jovian Confederation protecting their space country from CEGA (Central Earth Government & Administration, pronounced like the game developer), but just about every faction and occupation is open for play.

As Jovian Chronicles has its root in classic Real Robot anime, you can expect similar themes: War is nothing to be excited about. Nothing is without consequences, and the factions are anything but black-and-white. This is a conflict where good friends or relatives migth end up on different sides. And if my memory of Universal Century Gundam serves me correct, you should never fall in love. Ever.

Oh, and there's also this:

quote:

Music: Many anime are known for their great soundtrack. This can enhance your playing experience, too. An opening theme song to start each session is almost mandatory.
Oh yeah. Every RPG session can only be improved with some bitchin' Gurren Lagann tunes :kamina:

Genre Points

Genre Points were one of the new optional additions to the rules in this edition. They are your typical Action/Hero/Whatever points which you can spend to influence your actions or the plot. The following uses are seen as fitting for Jovian Chronicles:
  • Burst of Angst: Traumatic events can cause you to go berserk, allowing you to boost most of your attributes at the cost of becoming a bit mentally unstable. Typical underaged mecha pilot stuff.
  • Creative Stunt: For all your MacGyuver needs.
  • Inner Well of Strength: Ignore wound penalties through sheer badassery.
  • Last Hurrah: If you have to go down, go down with a bang.
  • Sweet Success: Your standard skill roll boost.

History

This section starts off with a quick history on mankinds first baby steps into space, with a mention of Gerard K. O'Neills design of a large, cylinder-shaped space station that could house thousands of people (which does end up happening in the setting). The first major diversion from actual history starts at 1997 when NASA begun a Solar Power Staellite project as a means to revolutionize energy production. The first satellite was succesfully deployed in 1999, which was followed by an entire array of solar panels.
Things really started to take off with the invention of fusion engines in 2007 by a team of North American and Japanese scientists. Suddenly, flights from and to Earth's orbit became efficient to the point of being somewhat economically profitable. Things became even better with magnetic accelerators that - apart from making for nifty guns and engines - allowed you to just shoot cargo into orbit. For safer transportations, you could also have space stations lift stuff up directly with a "skyhook".

Aiming to move beyond Earth's orbit in search for contruction material, the first moon base was established in 2024, with the first Mars mission starting in 2027. Space colonies also started to crop up.

With Earth's ever increasing population and the orbit getting a bit crowded as well, mankind was looking for other planets to colonize, starting with a tiny settlement on Mars. Various companies were formed to spearhead the colonization process, as they needed space stations and colonies to house their workers near the various planets whose resources have suddenly become ripe for the taking. The Jovian Gas Mining Corporation was the first of these companies, building their first space station around Jupiter in 2037. Even terraforming was being done with Venus.

The second half of the 21st century saw Earth's collapse, brought on by a catastrophic state of its environment followed by utter chaos and instability. Anyone who could afford it left the planet for one of the various colonies. Now ruling from the orbit of a rather FUBARed planet, the newly titles United Space Nations could only watch as Mars and other colonies declared their independence and went their own way. The various colonies saw each other largely isolated from each other.

Still, technology marches on, and advances in ECM and stealth technology led to larger and larger Exo-Suits (aka power armor). Finally, 2162 saw the apparently anime-loving Jovian Confederation rolling out the first Exo-Armor.

Back on Earth, Europe and North America started to get their act together, forming "The Union", with the goal to unify and stabilize the planet once again, by force if necessary. This finally came to fruition in 2182. CEGA was born, contact with the colonies re-established, and trade and tourism flourished again.

Things started to get sour again with the start of the 23rd century. Venusians started showing interest in Jupiter thanks to recently-discvered lifeforms on the planet that may or may not hold the key to eternal life, and Terran scientist Dr. Agram Peyarje developed a system for thought-based machinery control which CEGA planned to use for military purposes. Dr. Peyarje wanted none of that and requested political asylum from the Jovian Confederation.

A covert operation to get the doctor to Jupiter didn't quite go as smooth as expected. The Jovians got the doctor, but found themselves chased by an entire fleet, composed of CEGA forces who didn't want to lose their mad scientist and Venusian forces that just went along the ride to try to destroy the Jovian capital-station for unhindered access to the planet. The station was saved and the fleet was defeated by Jovian forces, but ensuing political tensions where pretty messy. Neither CEGA nor Venus felt responsible for the actions of a fleet that has supposedly gone rogue, Lunar and Mars were pissed because the wild goose chase caused the destruction of an entire colony and a fancy new orbital elevator respectively, and the head of covert operation was deemed a traitor because he ended up bringing an entire hostile fleet back home.

Next Time: A look at the various nations of the solar system. Are Venusians really as dickish as I fear they are?!

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Nullkigan
Jul 3, 2009


I binge-bought most of the Jovian Chronicle first edition and then SilCore and the 2nd edition PHB, but never got to play much of either. I remember hating SilCore after finding it did nothing to stop the snake-eyes-and-box-carts problem whilst adding layers of needless complexity. And eventually realising I'd have preferred Heavy Gear even if I really like the idea of Giant Robots cutting space ships in half. I have no idea where my books are these days.

In the history section does it just ignore the original developer campaign basically defining 90% of the setting (featuring, if I remember correctly, THE MAN THEY CALL RAMBO GARAND, "It's a Gundam!" and a multi-session trip in a slow haul freighter pretending to not be The Main Characters) or are you saving that for later on? A lot of the setting gets absolutely cringe worthy (you have three rival intelligence organisations with codenames based on the Greek version of the Norns?), but it's sort of interesting to excavate the roots and see how fan-fictiony they really are.

There's probably also some interesting exposition to be done on the state of Dream Pod 9 itself - them hopping between games and being film extras (specialising in militaries and police?) and eventually just hiring fans to save the product line before settling back into selling pewter is probably worth a post all on its own.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Nullkigan posted:

In the history section does it just ignore the original developer campaign basically defining 90% of the setting (featuring, if I remember correctly, THE MAN THEY CALL RAMBO GARAND, "It's a Gundam!" and a multi-session trip in a slow haul freighter pretending to not be The Main Characters) or are you saving that for later on? A lot of the setting gets absolutely cringe worthy (you have three rival intelligence organisations with codenames based on the Greek version of the Norns?), but it's sort of interesting to excavate the roots and see how fan-fictiony they really are.

I think that was the "Save the Doctor!" part, which sounds a lot like an adventure that the players escalated to glorious degrees of batshit.

Nullkigan
Jul 3, 2009


Actually, yeah, the more I think on it the more it hits the big notes from my very hazy recollections. Jovian Chronicles started as a homebrew and eventually got written up with the original campaign as key lore, a bit like Ravenloft.

I seem to remember the whole Mars incident was that the players got their slow-boating cover blown whilst escorting the Doctor and had one of the three or so mecha battles to actually occur (the first almost certainly related to the lunar incident, the third being the big conflict at the end involving prototype mobile suits).

I think they got around the problem of only one player having exo-piloting skills by having the others play temporary NPCs or even the main antagonist (who may or may not have been wearing a mask and may or may not have switched sides repeatedly until a final duel with a player pilot), which was pretty clever for the time, but I could just have inferred that as they never explicitly put together a play log.

Things eventually moved away from Gundam homages and more towards a mix of the pacific and cold wars (complete with fleet books on carrier designs!), much like Heavy Gear/Terra Nova was super-heavily influenced by WW1/2 Europe.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Nullkigan posted:

I think they got around the problem of only one player having exo-piloting skills by having the others play temporary NPCs or even the main antagonist (who may or may not have been wearing a mask and may or may not have switched sides repeatedly until a final duel with a player pilot), which was pretty clever for the time, but I could just have inferred that as they never explicitly put together a play log.

Things eventually moved away from Gundam homages and more towards a mix of the pacific and cold wars (complete with fleet books on carrier designs!), much like Heavy Gear/Terra Nova was super-heavily influenced by WW1/2 Europe.

There was a Mekton campaign with only one mecha pilot? Now that's funky.

And any potential play log involving Not-Char and a terrorist attack by Marsian anarchists (the space elevator bit wasn't entirely the Jovian dude's fault) is a play log that needs to be made. A shame we don't have this Replay culture like Japan.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


occamsnailfile posted:

As I said before I'm curious to see how it compares to/draws from Rifts, especially with the big K actually endorsing it. Crusading to actually close the ri--breaches is a logical setting goal given the immense damage they could do (I'm guessing) but Rifts never really focused on that for some reason.

When I was at Gencon last year I picked up Cosmic Enforcers, a game by ex-Palladium employees that feels the need to note in the introduction that it does not use the Palladium system.

It's kind of interesting and I'd like to cover it, but I feel like I'd want to get to the era of Palladium it's from which is a ways away.

CommissarMega
Nov 18, 2008


Contents:
Introduction
Character Creation: Species


Ha-hey, guess what, folks! That's right, it's time for more


Character Creation Part 2: Species

In Ironclaw, your species plays quite an important role in how you should play your character. Even details like whether they're diurnal/nocturnal, or their diet can have an impact in how you play; after all, being stuck in a cabbage field isn't going to help a hungry lion.Certain abilities also only recharge once your character has gone through their natural cycle (so nocturnal PCs recharge their powers at night, diurnal ones in the day etc.) Each species has the following stats:

Species: The name of your base species; in some cases, you can play variants.
Description: A short description of that species' stereotypes.
Diet: What they eat.
Gifts: Apart from your three starting Gifts, you get an additional 3 Gifts from your Species.
Habitat: In certain cases, you can roll your Species die as a bonus die when you're in your preferred Habitat.
Include [Species] Dice: Three Skills where you can add your Species die to a roll.
Senses: When trying to Observe something with these senses, you can roll your Species die.
Weapons: Your natural weapons.

One thing you might notice reading the descriptions is that how the races are portrayed often don't have any relation to what their Skills and Gifts are. On one hand, this can be annoying, and immersion-breaking at first; why say shrews are easily-influenced mobs when they have a Will bonus, after all?

But then again, wouldn't it actually be more realistic this way? Sure, they're actual different species, unlike humans, but the game takes place in an age where what you are isn't as important as what you do. Besides, it would be boring if every bat was a scary-rear end motherfucker, and mice were all shrinking cowards. It also helps cut down on special snowflakes- a truly noble-hearted weasel would be unusual, yes, but not Drizzt-level.

Anyway, enough of that- time to find your spirit animals! This art, by the way, is what sold me on the game.


It's amazing how studying some beans could herald greater changes than sticking swords in kings. I actually like this one- sure there are plenty of asskicking pictures to come, but Ironclaw chose to open with aardvark Gregor Mendel.

Of course, you can say that they wanted to stay true to the aardvark's fluff, but considering that there are races with the 'Coward' Gift shown doing badass things, I can't help but feel this was intentional.


Find a job you like, and you'll never work a day in your life. And these two aren't working.


Seriously, look at them! So happy! :3:


She will break you.


That poor tiger doesn't know what's going to happen to him- nor will he remember. Boars also make up the majority of House Doloreaux, one of the setting's major noble families/nations.


I sense a hilarious romatic comedy-adventure incoming!


"Hard work is its own reward," they say. Wonder if they believe it.


It's hard to do Chaotic Neutral without being Chaotic Randumb, but artwise at least, I think this carries it off well.


You'd think that animals with keen eyes would be able to see through this trick better, but nooo.


See? This is what I meant by stats not matching up with the pictures. Deer have 'Coward' as a gift, yet this dude will hold that wall 'til Doomsday.

Joking aside, Coward can actually be a very good trait, even for a fighter. I'll get to that when the relevant section comes up.


Aw, don't bully the poor little Dhole. Ah well, at least it isn't as bad as the donkey's.


Where some poor man is taken by a bitch and a sonovabitch :v:


Man, that poor donkey. Every other race is at least doing something in their art, sometimes even something badass cool. This dude gets the gallows :smith: Ironically, their stat spread makes for some excellent warriors.


Grey foxes are the majority members of House Rinaldi, a once-major noble family that has since fallen into ruin.


Well, someone's having a grand old time. These guys are usually minor Rinaldi nobles.


No more fucks left to give. Goats form the Chevernaise, barbarian tribes who are constantly warrign with the Doloreaux.


And here we see one of the few depictions of interspecies attraction; Ironclaw doesn't go into detail about that sort of thing, thank God, but it's nice to see that species ain't a barrier. Should've been in this case though :smith:


gently caress yeah, Horses! I firmly believe the reason horses were made the main faction of House Avoirdupois was because of the 'Chivalry' pun, and I will not have anything said against ot :colbert:


Seems innocent enough- until you realize that the slogan behind him means "Let them hate, so long as they fear." :stare:


Yeah, this picture's pretty much the perfect one for the lions. Lionesses also seem to be quite empowered ladies- just like real life!


Most notable thing about this entry is the mention of Atavists; this refers to a mechanic which I'll get to later.


With their prehensile limbs and tail, Monkeys can be surprisingly versatile. Also, are monkeys full-blown herbivores? I thought primates in general were omnivorous.


Look at that mouse crusader on the right. Some poor dude's going to get smote before the day's done, I think.


Depending on your game, I can see the Otter as being very useful, or somewhat gimped. True, there isn't a lot of min-maxing when it comes to species, but the Otter's Gifts are somewhat situational.


Yeah, look at this smug bastard. The world's his to conquer, it just doesn't know it yet. The globe also seems to show a continent very much like the Americas...


I need to know- how do they get armour on?


Some editing problems with the text here, unfortunately. But who cares when we got a badass bunny over here?


Because if you look the part, might as well play it, right?


Go on, look me in the eye and tell me this isn't awesome, go on. Yeah, I know it's awesome.


Ravens are seen as creepy, and they like, or at least don't mind that. To be honest, it's kind of sad if you ask me.


Aw, come on guys, let the poor rhino enjoy his drink!


Ironically, their Increased Will trait means that shrews should actually be less likely to turn rioters. Also, shrews have poisonous bites? :psyduck: Learn something new every day, I suppose.


Man, I wonder how those pies smell like. Must be good, if the kids in the back are any indication.


Some birds build nests. Other birds have vision.


Man, better hope you've got a good reason for being there. Dude looks arcane- no, eldritch, belike!


drat, that's one ice-cold cat. Dude's raising his hat, and she's just all "Talk to the stripes, peasant."


Aw, come on marm, the bear's not the only one at fault!


Oh my, I do believe I have the vapours! *flutters scarf*


I don't know why I bothered with the other races (except maybe the horses), because odds are you're all set on playing these :black101:-as hell guys. Those woad-painted wolves are part of the barbarian Phelan tribes- but wolves also form the majority of House Bisclavaret, the most technologically advanced faction in Calabria. Those guys are also famous for their kilts, and between being woad-clad Celts as well as musket-toting Scotsmen, it is obvious that wolves are objectively Ironclaw's best species, no arguments :colbert:

Thoughts on Species:
This is definitely my favourite section of the book, thanks to the very evocative art. Not only do they give a good impression of the time period, but they also let you see that a PC can be more than just their species. Cowards like deer and mice can actually be mighty warriors (and the mechanics do support this), while big muscly dudes like cattle and donkeys don't have to be beefy warriors. I can just imagine that in a lesser game, wolves and foxes would of course be the warrior types, while rats and mice would be thieves etc. Ironclaw though? Nope! Again, what you do is far more important than what you are, though the latter does help.

Another thing I like? All the animals look quite realistic, even if sometimes their head hair might seem a little humanesque. There aren't any sparkledogs, no rainbow-coloured foxes, no winged wolves and poo poo. These animal dudes actually do look like animal dudes, and it's sad that HSD has to resort to that kind of Mary Sue bullshit when Ironclaw shows that no, you don't need to have six wings and twelve dongs on your centaur-dragon hybrid to be badass. I mean, just look at that weasel! He's fabulous, he's cool, he's obviously doing something awesome, and he doesn't need to look like furry Sephiroth to do it.

So yeah, that's the species art of Ironclaw. Next up, classes and skills. I think I might want to skip over to the fluff sections after that before getting into magic and stuff, though. First, because the fluff is really good, and also because some sections do either introduce or reference stuff that is related to the fluff. No use talking about the light spells of S'Allumer if you don't know what that is.

CommissarMega fucked around with this message at 11:39 on Feb 1, 2015

MonsieurChoc
Oct 12, 2013

Every species can smell its own extinction.


I don't know why, but this makes me think of Usagi Yojimbo a lot.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


CommissarMega posted:


I don't know why I bothered with the other races (except maybe the horses), because odds are you're all set on playing these :black101:-as hell guys.

Because they need people for the Atavist :black101:-wolves to beat up.

CommissarMega
Nov 18, 2008


One thing I forgot to write, was that wolves come from two major factions- both the noble House Bisclavaret as well as the savage Phelan tribes, which is where those awesome barbarian dudes come from.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Man, I can't wait for the fluff. This looks more and more interesting by the minute :allears:

CommissarMega posted:

Contents:
Introduction
Character Creation: Species



That poor tiger doesn't know what's going to happen to him- nor will he remember. Boars also make up the majority of House Doloreaux, one of the setting's major noble families/nations.

Napoleon's ancestor was pretty badass.

Siivola
Dec 23, 2012



I never realized how much I missed funny animals doing cool things.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




CommissarMega posted:

One thing I forgot to write, was that wolves come from two major factions- both the noble House Bisclavaret as well as the savage Phelan tribes, which is where those awesome barbarian dudes come from.

I can't help but to smile slightly at that reference in the Noble house name. :D

For those curious, there is a story from around 12th century France about a noble baron in Brittany named Bisclavret or Bisclavaret that during three days of the week disappears into the woods without any explanation until he reveals to his wife, after her insistence, that he was in fact a werewolf, and went into the woods in wolf form to hunt in the woodlands and leaving his clothes at the edge of the forest.
However it turns out that his wife was unfaithful so after the baron turned himself into a wolf at one point she and her lover, a local knight, stole his clothes and returned back to his castle and told everyone that the baron had been killed and the two took over the lands.
The baron in his wolf guise then manages to get in the good graces of the king by acting odd and via various actions the baron manages to expose the whole coup to the king and return to his human form again.
The whole story is even available online on Google Books for those interested.
Fun thing to note about the name Bisclavaret, according to the book I read the story in, is a Breton compound word means either "wearing short breeches" or "speaking wolf"

I gotta say that's an interesting reference added by the Ironclaw writers. Personally I think they should've gone with the Gorlagon tale instead which is a very similar tale to Bisclavaret but the ending this time is that instead of the unfaithful wife and her lover getting exiled the wife has to carry her lovers decapitated head on a platter with her at all times as a punishment.

ThisIsNoZaku
Apr 22, 2013

Pew Pew Pew!


Cooked Auto posted:

Fun thing to note about the name Bisclavaret, according to the book I read the story in, is a Breton compound word means either "wearing short breeches" or "speaking wolf"
:language:

Ironclaw is really bizzare. Those pictures have furry characters in them, but they don't make me want to roll my eyes, or feel uncomfortable at all.

Dulkor
Feb 28, 2009



I think I might actually have a copy of Jadeclaw (Ironclaw's not-China themed cousin) sitting in storage somewhere. I don't have nearly enough time to do a write up myself, but if anyone's interested I may be able to ship it.

I'd need to confirm I still have it and it hasn't gotten damaged by the passage of time or anything first, though.

CommissarMega
Nov 18, 2008


Dulkor posted:

I think I might actually have a copy of Jadeclaw (Ironclaw's not-China themed cousin) sitting in storage somewhere. I don't have nearly enough time to do a write up myself, but if anyone's interested I may be able to ship it.

I'd need to confirm I still have it and it hasn't gotten damaged by the passage of time or anything first, though.

I actually have it, and once I'm done with Ironclaw proper I plan to do Jadeclaw, no worries.

Cooked Auto posted:

Bisclavaret legend

This is really nice! Being a cultural wasteland, the only place I knew Bisclavaret was from Exalted :suicide:

ThisIsNoZaku posted:

Ironclaw is really bizzare. Those pictures have furry characters in them, but they don't make me want to roll my eyes, or feel uncomfortable at all.

Siivola posted:

I never realized how much I missed funny animals doing cool things.

There's your answer, Zaku. The reason that furries have such a toxic reputation is that more often than not, they present anthros as simply sexual fantasies and/or garish Mary Sue fantasies. Iornclaw on the other hand, harkens back to stuff like Disney's Robin Hood; change the characters to humans, and it wouldn't change the story at all. In fact, it goes one better- by making each species distinct, yet with fluff that doesn't necessarily match those stats, Ironclaw ensures that being an anthropomorphic animal means something but doesn't actually restrict you.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


I'm noting that all the animals in Ironclaw seem to be birds and mammals. What about aquatic animals, insects, reptiles, etc.? Are those added in another supplement, reserved for villains, etc.? Or are they just not in the game as anything except normal animals?

ThisIsNoZaku posted:

:language:

Ironclaw is really bizzare. Those pictures have furry characters in them, but they don't make me want to roll my eyes, or feel uncomfortable at all.

I think it's just that it's obvious that whoever was drawing this wasn't jerking off to it, they just thought that a badass rhino warrior would be a cool thing. The setting also doesn't look to take itself too seriously so far, like, serious things happen, but there's still room for humor and the fact that we've gotten to character creation without any ranty screeds from the creators about the superiority of furries or libertarianism means that, gasp, maybe someone just made a fun game to do fun things in.

Rohan Kishibe
Oct 29, 2011

Frankly, I don't like you
and I never have.


PurpleXVI posted:

I'm noting that all the animals in Ironclaw seem to be birds and mammals. What about aquatic animals, insects, reptiles, etc.? Are those added in another supplement, reserved for villains, etc.? Or are they just not in the game as anything except normal animals?

In this situation I like to imagine that all the shark and stingray people and whatever are busy chilling in furry not-atlantis, so hopefully that's it.

CommissarMega
Nov 18, 2008


PurpleXVI posted:

I'm noting that all the animals in Ironclaw seem to be birds and mammals. What about aquatic animals, insects, reptiles, etc.? Are those added in another supplement, reserved for villains, etc.? Or are they just not in the game as anything except normal animals.

One of the neat things about Ironclaw is that with a few exceptions, reptiles and insects take the place of 'regular' animals, so Avoirdupois knights ride on bipedal lizards, pseudo-dinosaurs are yoked to till the soil etc.

PurpleXVI posted:

I think it's just that it's obvious that whoever was drawing this wasn't jerking off to it, they just thought that a badass rhino warrior would be a cool thing. The setting also doesn't look to take itself too seriously so far, like, serious things happen, but there's still room for humor and the fact that we've gotten to character creation without any ranty screeds from the creators about the superiority of furries or libertarianism means that, gasp, maybe someone just made a fun game to do fun things in.

You should see the fluff section. That whole thing puts poo poo like HSD to shame, I tell you. Hell, it puts the fluff sections of most other RPGs to shame too.

Prison Warden posted:

In this situation I like to imagine that all the shark and stingray people and whatever are busy chilling in furry not-atlantis, so hopefully that's it.

If they did, the otters would've found out about it :tinfoil:

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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



Ironclaw seems super cool and I want to play it.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


Mors Rattus posted:

Ironclaw seems super cool and I want to play it.

Ironclaw is, in fact, super cool and worth playing.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


CommissarMega posted:

One of the neat things about Ironclaw is that with a few exceptions, reptiles and insects take the place of 'regular' animals, so Avoirdupois knights ride on bipedal lizards, pseudo-dinosaurs are yoked to till the soil etc.

As cool as that is, it's also kind of a shame, because lizardpeople and bugpeople are rad as gently caress.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


PurpleXVI posted:

As cool as that is, it's also kind of a shame, because lizardpeople and bugpeople are rad as gently caress.


Jadeclaw introduces insectpeople and lizardpeople. Though in 1st edition the Insectpeople were all basically 3rd class citizens and NPCs, 2nd edition gave them stats.

FMguru
Sep 10, 2003

peed on;
sexually

MonsieurChoc posted:

I don't know why, but this makes me think of Usagi Yojimbo a lot.
Sanguine also used the same system in their official licensed Usagi Yojimbo RPG. Which, sadly, is not the best official licensed Usagi Yojimbo RPG (that would be the Greg Stolze design published Gold Rush Games, which also happens to be one of the finest RPGs ever written).

sexpig by night
Sep 8, 2011

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

Huh I thought you guys were just so used to lovely fetish RPGs you'd call anything furry and not totally retarded good but...yea Ironclaw looks interesting! Well done, Ironclaw people, aside from some dumb pictures (not the species art works, all those rule) you seem to have made a furry RPG that doesn't make people cringe! A rare feat!

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




CommissarMega posted:

This is really nice! Being a cultural wasteland, the only place I knew Bisclavaret was from Exalted :suicide:

Yeah that was actually one of the results I got from googling the name before I decided to just go and check the book I had that mentioned it.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


Hc Svnt Dracones

Scrooge McDuck: Capitalist Space Marine



So last time we discovered that simply pouring all your skill points into physical stats let you effectively murder anything you could get close to, up to and including the setting's supposed horrifying big bads that killed everyone on Luna. And you could do this as a gecko. But what if you didn't ignore all your ledger stats? What could you do then? Could you, perhaps, get a "V-801 Mag-Lance," a weapon with the attribute "Annihilate," which means the weapon does a staggering total of 1000 damage. In a line, counting off damage for every object(like cover) or enemy in that line, until all 1000 points are spent or all objects and characters along the line's passage which are hit, are eradicated?

That's a good question. The Mag Lance costs 1000 credits. It also has a size of "LAN" or "Lift-Assistance Needed," which means we can't move-and-shoot with it in the same turn without a Body:Strength of five, only achievable with a suit of powered armor(at least at chargen). It doesn't matter much since the Mag Lance specifically requires you to stand still to fire it anyway, but since the best suit of powered armor in the game, enough to let us actually survive a round of beatings from El Gecko(but not two rounds of it), only costs 500, we may as well see if we can get that, too. So our goal is to see how fast it's possible to milk 1500 credits out of the game's lovely Ledger mechanics.

So anyway, let's get started. Obviously we're going to be Family: Avialae, which gives us a +1 to Body: Acuity and lets us fly. Sadly, the closest we'll get in Species is simply Bird, so we're a Bird Bird who happens to look duck-like. Our "Morphism" will simply be the plantigrade/digitigrade one that means we look perfectly normal and don't freak anyone out.

pre:
                 Body(D8)/Mind(D10)/Community(D10)/Ledger(D12)

Dexterity       *  /***/*  /*  
Acuity          ** /***/*  /***
Resilience      *  /*  /*  /***
Strength        ***/*  /*  /***
Presence        *  /*  /*  /***
On the left side of our stat spread, we pick up some Strength so we can carry our huge gun, we then grab some Mind:Dexterity and Mind:Acuity, the former lets us make more attacks in a round(assuming we have enough points in our Battle Pool) and also improves our initiative, while the latter lets us actually have a chance of hitting stuff, and also increases the range we can hit at. On the right side, obviously, we attempt to crank our moneymaking to maximum. We ignore Economy:Dexterity since all we can use it for is rerolls, while the others let us maximize our rolls.

So how much does this min/maxing actually get us to start with?

Our Ledger Score is Econ:Presence + Econ:Strength, so 6. Our starting cash is three rolls of (1d8*Ledger Score)+30, so minimally 114, maximally 234. Not quite enough to start out with a Mag Lance, admittedly. How many sessions would it take us to actually afford our instakill weapon, though?

quote:

Ledger Balance: Roll an Economy die and add your Ledger Score to the result; every dot you have in Economy is worth that many credits today.Add them all up and add the result to your Credit total.

So we get between 91 and 234 credits at the end of every session, simply as a default. On top of that, we can gamble with our profits by rolling Econ:Resilience and/or Econ:Acuity + Finance, with the former multiplying our Ledger Score by number of successes(every roll over 8), and the latter doing the same, but for our final profit result. We're obviously going to max out our Finance, so all our rolls are 1d12+3, meaning that it's basically impossible for us to get 0 successes on either roll and no multipliers whatsoever, and relatively likely that we'll get a multiplier of 2.

Assuming we just get average luck on our very first roll and get two multipliers of 2? 338 to 624 credits at the end of a session. Meaning that even if we completely flub most of the rolls involved, within three or four sessions(or less, if we get lucky, and it wouldn't even require getting that lucky) we could be hauling around an instakill weapon that can take down every pre-generated enemy in the setting and pretty much anything else the GM can generate. Give us a couple more sessions and we can be firing our weapon from a suit of powered armor that's basically like having our very own mech. Firing the weapon requires not having made any "move actions" the turn you're firing, or the turn prior, meaning that, going by the rules as written, you can just start firing on the first round of combat. The description makes it sound as though you need to spend an action setting up the weapon, but the rules for it don't actually require that, simply that you're not moving. So even in the middle of a fight, you can spend two turns firing off some other weapon, without moving, and then fire the Mag Lance, or you can simply fire the Mag Lance on the first round of combat since, with it being the first round, you haven't actually made any actions in the rounds before. And once we fire the weapon, it's basically all over for anyone we're firing it at, since even under the worst of possible circumstances(highest cover bonus), we've got about an 80% chance of hitting someone, and enough damage points to destroy an armored bunker and whoever's inside.

There's also some extremely poorly worded rules about our attacks being disrupted if we get hit in the round before we act(but since we don't declare our actions until our turn, we can just do something else if we get hit), but the way it's phrased "if you take hit point damage," suggests that as long as its our armor getting knocked around, and not us, we're still in the clear. And having our mecha power armor destroyed in one round would require a GM so out to get us that any fuckery we do within the realm of the rules would be meaningless anyway.

On top of all of that, the fact that we can also fly and buy powered armor to basically make us invisible is kind of chump change.

As mentioned, they also tucked away all of the cybernetics and surgery after the rules/combat chapter, for some reason, which I can kind of understand, because it's hugely underwhelming, even compared to the rest of the book. There are barely modifications, and about a third of them are basically cosmetic, while the remainder come with huge drawbacks or offer you stuff that you can get much cheaper just by buying it(like having built-in armor. Have fun paying twice as much as you would for powered armor that's three times as effective and boosts your stats, too!). Then there are the Reclaiming Surgeries, which vary between the neat and the retarded, but are mostly only things that Laterals would bother with(because they get them for free). Now, keep in mind, as I mentioned earlier, the fluff for all of the "Reclaiming Surgeries" is that they're about re-activating genes that your particular brand of animal had back when it was still an animal, and not an anthro thing, so...

Since when have dogs had genetically superior work ethic and healing saliva? Because those are some of the things they can recover with Reclaiming Surgeries. Also note that while dogs get these chump change boosts, reptiles get to be poisonous, scale sheer walls and regenerate lost limbs. So much for game balance.







Of course, I also promised you that there'd be space wizards in these chapters beyond the rules chapters, and drat straight, there are space wizards or, as the game calls it, "Transcendent Implants." Unfortunately, you can't even build your concept about being a space wizard or starting as one, the highest possible starting allegiance for a corporation is 2, and they require 4 before you can buy any, meaning that it's basically entirely down to GM benevolence whether you ever will have access to them, especially since only one corporation sells them. After getting one, it's also entirely possible that it'll be randomly locked at a power level where using it is literally suicidal.

Implants function at "Cuil"-levels, the higher the level, the stronger the effect(and the stronger the side effects), at level 5, using it means you die or stop being a PC in some fashion, usually in a very dramatic way. Your implant's Cuil level, at implantation, is decided by rolling 1d10-(Mind:Presence+Body:Presence), with a maximum result of five. Keep in mind that while Mind:Presence sort of makes sense for this, as it's effectively your "spiritual wholeness"-stat, Body:Presence does not make even a whit of sense for this, as it's your "physical beauty"-stat. But hey, sure, I guess being really loving pretty makes you good at harnessing the POWER OF THE STAR GODS or whatever the poo poo this stuff is.

You also have a 1 in 4 chance of the implant you getting spontaneously turning into another implant after installation. Just because gently caress you, dear player, for wanting to have fun with space magic.

Did I mention that some environmental effects, critical failures and Transcendent Implant usages can also escalate Cuil levels? Because self-destructing meaninglessly is what translates to "fun!"

quote:

If you took a Transcendent Implant and did not have enough Trait points to prevent the chance of a Cuil 5 implant, you leaped into this a little earlier than you should have. None the less, it is the characterís choice if they want to use their implant or not, and it could lead to a rather spectacular end depending on the situation. You can still use the small, utilitarian functions of your implant even if itís Cuil 5, but if something should occur to force its activation, the You that was will be no more.

quote:

if something should occur to force its activation, the You that was will be no more

Man, who doesn't just love even more chances of random death?

But just to make things better, you don't always have to be at Cuil 5 to have your implant be useless and/or fatal to use! Let's take the Translocation implant, for instance. At Cuil 1 it lets you teleport(note, though, that as far as I can tell, the combat chapter doesn't seem to explicitly note what kind of action using these implants is. Is it movement? Offense? Standard? Support?) a given number of hexes in a fight. At Cuil 2, the same, but with a chance of being a bit off on your location. At Cuil 3, it drags along everything around you and the minimum warp distance is 10 miles... on a roll of 1 on the scatter die, you arrive a mile under your target location, if you arrive inside something solid, you die. Better hope you're teleporting to somewhere with a lot of caves. At Cuil 4...

quote:

4 Cuils: You and everything around you in a 100 foot radius translocate to an extreme location.
Roll a d10.
1-2: Earth
3-4: Mars
5-6:Venus
7-8: Random inhabited Jovian moon
9-10: Space
Once you arrive at your target world, refine your position using the rules in the previous Cuil. If you roll 9 or 10, roll the dice again to determine which planetís orbit you arrive in. If you roll a 9 or 10 twice, you donít arrive in an orbit at all. Your character arrives in the black with no point of reference, perhaps not even in the same solar system, and is effectively lost forever.

We've confirmed that Earth would be suicide to arrive on(unless you're El Gecko or Scrooge McDuck five sessions into the game, anyway). Mars, Venus and an inhabited Jovian moon are alright, empty interplanetary space is basically the same as death, pretty much. Of course, you may also get 9-10 twice and get warped out of the game, or the Cuil 3 rules might dump you inside solid rock or something. loving, awesome, right?

Excitation, or Pyrokinesis, at Cuil 4, has a 25% chance of throwing your mind into the void after briefly turning you into a fire elemental. Excitation, or Telekinesis, has a 37.5% chance of instantly destroying your body if you touch anything after activating it at Cuil 4. And on, and on, and loving on. Most of the powers are handy at Cuil 1, useable with danger at Cuil 2, then at Cuil 3, some of them remain useful while others are basically game-ruining/character-ruining, and Cuil 4 are pretty much always fatal or have a really high chance of being fatal, just in a slightly less instantaneous way than Cuil 5.

And remember, just a single one of these poo poo-tastic implants costs 1500 Credits, as much as it would cost Scrooge McDuck to become a living tank with the Annihilate-effect weapon that, I'll just remind you, can't backfire and wipe him out of reality.

So, they managed to somehow make a version of the psionics from Eclipse Phase which are even more useless to the player, despite largely involving the cool, reality-breaking exsurgent poo poo that you wished your PC could get to play with. That's a loving accomplishment!





I feel like I've been reviewing this loving game forever. But thankfully we should be down to just one loving post after this, one last post of lovely art and shittier writing.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


Why are there space wizards, exactly? Just 'It's sci fi, we called it psionics, we don't gotta explain poo poo'? A function of how much better furries are than those stupid HYOOMANS?

The funniest thing is, the response to Albedo and Ironclaw shows people can tell this game is poo poo because the game is poo poo, not just because it's got furries in it.

NutritiousSnack
Jul 12, 2011


I always wanted to play Ironclaw but was afraid my gaming group friends would think I was doing it for fetish purposes or if doing it with random people get perverts.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


Night10194 posted:

Why are there space wizards, exactly? Just 'It's sci fi, we called it psionics, we don't gotta explain poo poo'? A function of how much better furries are than those stupid HYOOMANS?

There are space wizards because for very vaguely explained reasons, TTI figured out the stuff that made the evil space crystal monster guys function(the hideous red things from several posts back), and decided to plug part of that into people, a discovery that doesn't actually result in anything besides these hugely useless implants.

Like there aren't any cool reality-breaking weapons or armor or anything, even the living armors and the living spaceships are(if I'm parsing the terrible writing right) powered by Progenitus' Vitae stuff(the stuff that liberates you from all biological necessities and lets you ignore any degree of injury as long as you've got a steady supply of it, and which is for some reason regarded as unnatural and terrible), rather than TRANSCENDENT TECHNOLOGY.

Communist Zombie
Nov 1, 2011


PurpleXVI posted:

Implants function at "Cuil"-levels

Worth noting that 'cuils' are are a reference to this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfdEdE96En0. Which is supposed to be a unit of abstraction/sur-realness/hyper-realness, and not some sort of quantum-magic spell level.

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



Communist Zombie posted:

Worth noting that 'cuils' are are a reference to this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfdEdE96En0. Which is supposed to be a unit of abstraction/sur-realness/hyper-realness, and not some sort of quantum-magic spell level.

Is there literally anything from this game that's not related to some sort of internet meme?

Tasoth
Dec 12, 2011


Oh hey, a metric system for monkey cheese. Sounds like a good idea to me.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


Tasoth posted:

Oh hey, a metric system for monkey cheese. Sounds like a good idea to me.

quote:

Transcendent implants work off a concept of abstracted reality. When active, the implant transcends its dedicated task into a layer of existence that sits beyond it, abstracted by a certain amount from established reality. Perhaps, in the normal layer, a plant is green when you look at it. In the next layer, that plant may be a puppy instead. The severity of the abstraction is measurable using a system TTI unearthed from ancient Earth datastreams a Cuil, which begins at 0 for general reality and ascends at one digit per level from there.

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.




Grimey Drawer

At first I thought it was a bizarre reference to a failed search engine. Then it abstracted itself straight up its own rear end.

Kai Tave
Jul 2, 2012


Fallen Rib

Man, they are so close, so close, to having a genuinely cool concept in "weird alien implant that gives you crazy powers by delving into alternate realities," and then

quote:

Perhaps, in the normal layer, a plant is green when you look at it. In the next layer, that plant may be a puppy instead.

they totally blow it on the dismount.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


In another layer, you may actually believe what I'm saying is profound. If that is this layer please give me all of your money.

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007





Bieeardo posted:

At first I thought it was a bizarre reference to a failed search engine. Then it abstracted itself straight up its own rear end.

It's an entirely new, intestinally-based plane of existence. :downs:

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

Picture a cliff with five layers...

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Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


I love the fact that it's basically magic in any other sense in that you need to have a certain stat spread to be able to use it. But It allows you to use it anyway even if you don't, and if you roll really bad on the dice then your character ceases to be because the game must punish you for your hubris.

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