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Xiahou Dun
Jul 16, 2009
BUTTS





I did my best guess on the Russian transcription and texted it to someone who's Russian is much better than mine, so we'll see.

And I zoomed in on the Chinese and what I can make of it is total gibberish even assuming they hosed up the characters and wrote them wrong. (Like having to pretend parts of the characters are different things to even make them characters.)

Plus there's like a swirly thing that is just straight up nothing. It's like "gauze/maybe a surname???? little [might as well be shrimp emoji for all it means] [thing that might be half of tiger if I was really drunk, I guess?]". Basically it's the written equivalent of racist ching-chong noises, is what I'm getting at.

Beast. Beast, you always just find new bedrock to dig through, don't you?

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Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Beast is bad. The metaphysics it's getting its dirty hands on, the Astral Realms, are good. Also the fact that Beasts live at the bottom of the Temenos is just begging for Mages or Woofs to come kick them in.

Also the idea that their 'Dark Mother' can veto other splat templates if a Beast cures their beastliness is really annoying,

AmiYumi
Oct 10, 2005
The Biden administration is actively fighting to withhold COVID vaccinations from our child concentration camps and pointing out that somebody used the word "democrat" as an adjective will not make that fact go away

Terrible Opinions posted:

You know the SCP Foundation does have that sort issue from time to time, but I find it really funny how bad goons freak out over an obvious joke. Like yes the talking dog has an edgy middle schooler name. That's the joke.

Doctor Kain Pathos Crow posted:

No you see it's a piss-take at the rest of the outlandish self-insert characters, mine was given that name by his parents and he hates it, you can tell by how he insists on using his full name at all times

also he's a magical talking dog

i'm very good at this

There is only one good author character, it's the researcher who, now matter what he's studying or how reckless the experiment, the result is "gently caress you apple seeds"

juggalo baby coffin posted:

ive not checked it out in a while, i should have a look again. i was into it pretty early on but it just got stupider and stupider over time, like they had all this awful fiction about the scientists and this stupid loving cyborg vampire guy who was unkillable and had katanas.
There have been some good ones recently, check out the PYF thread; couple of people there write good ones and poo poo all over the bad ones. Recent ones I remember liking were Bob Shepard (who brings us right back to Woof/Host chat), this volcano god that learns about the modern world, and some delightful robots.

AmiYumi fucked around with this message at 01:13 on Sep 2, 2019

Ronwayne
Nov 20, 2007

That warm and fuzzy feeling.


Re: Woof SCP, I guess the best solution is Operation Winter Gorilla and try to trick the wwolfs into stumbling into the god machine's innards and the angels getting lost in the shadow?

megane
Jun 20, 2008





Kurieg posted:

Werewolves are perfectly fine in the Mother's Land and entirely immune to it's effects. If anything they probably feel a supernatural compulsion to point at any nearby Beasts and nelson laugh.

It's obvious that the authors realize, on some level, that Beasts are just the crappy 4Kids version of werewolves. They can't even come up with one single shred of imagery that hasn't already been done much better by the woofs (or sometimes by vamps). And at the same time, the few things that make werewolves interesting had to be filed off lest they conflict with whatever pretty princess original character somebody wanted to play as a Beast.

Chernobyl Peace Prize
May 7, 2007

Or later, later's fine.
But now would be good.



Beast: We blast melodic hardcore in our Dark Mother's spirit basement because no one, even she, really understands us

Xiahou Dun
Jul 16, 2009
BUTTS





megane posted:

It's obvious that the authors realize, on some level, that Beasts are just the crappy 4Kids version of werewolves. They can't even come up with one single shred of imagery that hasn't already been done much better by the woofs (or sometimes by vamps). And at the same time, the few things that make werewolves interesting had to be filed off lest they conflict with whatever pretty princess original character somebody wanted to play as a Beast.

Hey now hey now. Credit where credit is due :

I'm pretty sure Beast has stolen from ALL the other, much better game-lines at this point.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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



As a side note, this implies that the Mother’s Lair is in the Worldsoul. Mages have problems with the soul rending winds there, and it is the place where the nonhuman dreams of the world go. Including werewolves, which is why they’re fine there, unlike anyone else.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

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


This also confirms that Horrors are literally fear goetia that eat too much resonance of human dreams, and beasts are just very ornate Claimed.

dwarf74
Sep 2, 2012






Buglord

H4: Throne of Bloodstone, Part 4: The Saddest 100th-Level Character


Okay so last time we saw one perfectly serviceable 100th-level character, plus a completely ridiculous 100th-level character. This time, well.... it's sad. Let's do Artemis first.


So as a spellcaster, Artemis is likewise gonna be a bit on the ridiculous side, but not to the same extent as Circe up there.

Let's start with the 100th-level Cleric stuff. On the plus side, because AD&D gives bonus spells for high Wisdom, she can cast a ridiculous number of spells every day. On the minus side, most Cleric spells just have level-based ranges and durations; the damage and whatnot tend to be set by the spell itself and unrelated to caster level. Oh, and the spells themselves aren't anywhere near as spectacular

Still, she can cast 12 Harm spells every day, which will drop an enemy down to 1d4 hit points no matter where they were, and that's not bad. It's just not particularly better than any normal, non-100th-level Cleric with 25 Wisdom.

The only weird bit is that her god is probably like 20th-30th level. :ironicat:

And then there's the Druid side of her stat block. This is where everything starts falling the gently caress apart. Why is she 23rd level? Because that's the maximum for a Druid, and still just absurd for normal AD&D play. Just like 1e Monks, Druids are level-capped and get wacky abilities at every level. As the highest-level Hierophant possible, Artemis can (or is)...
  • Immune to all natural poisons
  • Can alter appearance at-will
  • Hibernate
  • Enter the Elemental Plane of Earth, Air, Water, or Fire at-will (which comes with an ability to survive there, because it's absurdly deadly)
  • Conjure Air, Earth, Fire, Water, Magma, Ooze, Smoke, and Ice elementals
  • Also enter the para-elemental planes and the Plane of Shadow
  • Hell, all the Inner Planes including Positive and Negative and their quasi-elemental planes
  • Live on the Plane of Concordant Opposition
  • Roam the Inner Probability Lines (the 7th Dimension). I have no loving idea what this means - but the Manual of the Planes tells us this is basically like astral travel, but only to alternate primes? Anyway it sounds :krad: in that 70's new-agey kind of way.

So that's a neat list of cool poo poo anyways, which is a lot more than poor old Hermes gets.


Poor, poor Hermes.

So look, I already went on my little rant about this but I want to reiterate. Everyone else is like some ungodly dual-classed monstrosity like a Paladin/Fighter or whatever, but Hermes is a loving 7th level illusionist. Why? Because he's a gnome and he multi-classed, and that's the loving level limit for gnome illusionists. I have no idea why someone thought 7th-level Illusionist powers would matter at all in this adventure, but ... Yeah, the guy can cast a few lovely spells at low level. He didn't even max out his Intelligence to let him exceed the level cap much more. It's complete nonsense, and showcases how this poo poo is broken from the word go.

He's also a 100th-level Thief. :jerkbag: When your buddies can cast all the Detect Traps and Knock spells you could ever need, and the Fighter could just bash down anything resembling a barrier, this is rather less impressive than you might expect. He can hear noise two-thirds of the time. He can climb walls 85% of the time. If he uses a spell from a scroll, he still has a 1 in four chance of failure. This is a perfect showcase of how nonsense AD&D Thieves are; even at the top of his game, he's still really bad at some stuff. And - taking the adventure's advice - even the poo poo with >100% chances will still end up failing a bunch.

Ah, but what about his backstab? Well the adventure fucks with us a bit here. It says he gets 5x damage - but the PHB says it should be 1x extra damage for each 4 levels of experience. So Hermes should get a sweet 25x Backstab, but ... the text examples (it's not even a table) max out at 5x, so 5x it is. This makes me unreasonably angry, because it's not like his weapon damage is even that impressive. His Strength is a modest 18 (+1 to-hit/+2 damage) and with a +5, say, shortsword, he's dealing 1d6+7 whole damage. :toot:

Don't get me wrong, brosef here will still end up with a -10 AC and be quite capable of bullshitting through and around a bunch of stuff, but he just doesn't belong in the same party as the rest of these people.

So with that....
:siren:LABOR DAY BONUS CONTENT!:siren:
...But can they solo Cthulhu?

This is something of an unlicensed tie-in to Jerik's extremely fun Deities & Demigods write-ups. Can any of these 100th-level characters solo Cthulhu itself, one of the meanest bastards in the game?

First things first, here's Cthulhu.


Cthulhu is one bad motherfucker. He attacks as a "16+ HD creature" but has a 25 Strength. So, even though this is nowhere near a sure thing in AD&D's monster math, I'll put his THAC0 at 0 instead of at 7. His 30 attacks deal 1d10 damage each, and he can cast spells as a 20th-level Wizard.

I'll keep things incredibly simple here, mostly looking at math, so this is no kind of a simulation.

Perseus is a 100th-level Paladin with a Holy Avenger fighting a Chaotic Evil entity. So he's off to a good start already. He's got an always-on Protection from Evil spell, and automatically dispels all magic in a 10' radius as a 100th-level caster. Each of his attacks will deal an average of 36.5 damage, and he attacks 5 times every 2 rounds, missing only on a natural 1. On odd rounds, he'll do an average of 73 damage, and on even rounds an average of 109.5 damage. All things being equal, he drops Cthulhu's 400 hp in 11 attacks, or 5 rounds - but all things are not equal because Cthulhu regenerates 10 hp per round. So in those four rounds before the killing blow, Cthulhu heals back 40 hit points. Another 36.5 on the second attack in this odd-numbered round will leave Cthulhu hanging on for dear ... life or whatever ... with less than 10 hp. It will take a 6th round to vanquish the Great Old One.

Cthulhu, on the other hand, hits Perseus on a 10 or higher ... but gets a -2 to his attack rolls on account of the paladin's protection from evil aura. His spells can do jack poo poo, so tentacley death it will have to be. He'll hit an average of 13.5 times every round, doing a paltry 5.5 damage per attack ... but that poo poo adds up! He'll deal 74.5 damage per round, against Perseus's 390 hit points. It takes 6 rounds for Cthulhu to kill Perseus.

So yeah, it comes down to initiative, and that's basically bonkers.

Circe wipes the floor with Cthulhu from over a half-mile away, while flying. I mean, yeah, Cthulhu has what looks like a big, bad 80% magic resistance, but that works weird in AD&D 1e. You see, magic resistance is based on an 11th-level spellcaster. For every level below 11, the target's effective spell resistance goes up by 5%. For every level above, it goes down by 5%. Against a 100th-level caster, Cthulhu has an effective magic resistance of -365%.

Fortunately, all its saving throws are set at 2, but unfortunately it will only take three 100d6 fireballs or three 50-missile Magic Missile volleys to off the Great Old One.

Artemis ... Well, creeping doom will probably not work, because you need +2 weapons to hit Cthulhu. This is a shame, because it would easily one-shot him, or really almost anything else in the game. And I can't see Cthulhu sitting back and letting her cast harm for the full round. So my gut tells me that Artemis is toast without support, and her best bet is trying to gate in her god. (who is weaker than she is but probably better in a fight, at least.)

Hermes gets killed quickly, and it's not close. There's just no way he's got the damage output to knock 400 hp off Cthulhu, even if we gave him x5 backstabs every single round (which we could frankly not do).

Thank you for this exciting episode of bonus content. Have a happy labor day.

EimiYoshikawa
Sep 12, 2017

Defective, dumb, and self-destructive.
This metaphor is getting a little heavy-handed.




Are there rules for bursting out of a Beast's forehead in a shower of indeterminate gore after it sucks you into its lair, Zeus and Athena style?

Because I almost want Beasts to still exist if so.

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've had GM's who could not understand why thieves felt like dogshit in "OSR" stuff for the most part. "But you've got a whole 25% chance to do something that's core to your concept!!!!! Why aren't you excited??????"

At least 2nd ed capped most of the potential wizard shenanigans and gave the physical classes more high-level absurdity to get up to.

Jerik
Jun 24, 2019

I don't know what to write here.

You know, I know next to nothing about nWoD—my only experience with it has been as a player in a Prometheus one-shot—but if Night Horrors: Shunned by the Moon is at all representative, now I'm interested in finding out more about it. From Mors Rattus's posts, it seems, well, not flawless, but a lot more imaginative and evocative than I was expecting. The Hosts, in particular, strike as surprisingly good villains. "Surprisingly" because when I first read the brief description, I sort of expected that they were supposed to be villains just because, well, they were rats and bugs puppeting human bodies, and isn't that creepy and icky? And I didn't really expect them to come across as all that interesting. But no, it turns out that's not all there is to them at all; they're villains not just because the players are supposed to have a visceral reaction to creepy-crawlies in human suits, but because they're all legitimately doing terrible things, having a harmful effect on their surroundings, and making the world a worse place, and the PCs have good reason to oppose them. Like I said, I don't know much about nWoD, and I admit I've maybe been negatively disposed toward it because I'm enough of a traditionalist that I kind of had a knee-jerk reaction against completely rebooting and reimagining all the World of Darkness lines (even though I was never a huge fan of oWoD either), but if Night Horrors is typical of nWoD books I guess I ought to rethink that.

(On the other hand, Beast apparently goes a different route and has PCs that are legitimately doing terrible things and making the world a worse place, so everyone else has good reason to oppose them, but that doesn't seem to have really been what the developers were going for... but the impression I get from other posts here is that Beast is an uncharacteristic low point and doesn't really reflect nWoD as a whole. I hope that's the case.)

Regarding the 100th-level D&D characters' abilities, I suspect that any players who did play to ridiculously high levels kind of... weren't too scrupulous about sticking by the letter of the rules. I quoted in one of the Deities & Demigods posts a letter in Dragon Magazine #137 from a player who claimed that after six years of playing AD&D he and his friends' characters had "levels in the millions, maximum scores for almost every ability, and can obliterate five planes of the Abyss in a round." That letter raises a lot of questions I didn't really bother going into in the post. Maybe the most obvious is how they managed to accumulate enough experience to have levels in the millions—by the book, reaching level 1,000,000 as a thief would require 219,998,020,000 experience points, and other classes would take even more... and even permanently destroying Asmodeus on his home plane would yield only 709,650 XP, only about 1/310000 what they would need. Maybe the campaign centered around the PCs killing six million tarrasques, but I rather suspect there was some house ruling going on. (I find it amusing that they had maximum scores for almost every ability, though. Somehow in accumulating millions of experience levels they hadn't quite managed to maximize every score. I mean, even starting with dead-average ability scores, that would have taken 573 wishes per character (assuming they didn't use any magical books or other means that could have raised ability scores faster), but you'd think by the time they'd somehow managed to rack up millions of levels' worth of experience points, a few hundred wishes wouldn't pose any problem.)

But the thing that really shows that the players in question were making up their own rules is the bit about their being able to "obliterate five planes of the Abyss in a round". I'm 99% sure that nowhere in any AD&D books were there any rules about how characters could destroy planes, and even if they're just destroying the layers by dealing raw damage to them, well, the layers of the Abyss were never given hit points.

Of course, that's level something-million, not a mere level 100, but another letter in the same issue of Dragon went on about Waldorf the "358th-level magic-user" who "created the nuclear bomb", used it to utterly obliterate "all of Greyhawk... except for a 3 x 4 mile island with a castle called Castle Waldorf", destroyed "[a]ll creatures from the Monster Manuals... due to large amounts of nuclear fallout", and set "[a]ll the deities" to "work in a salt mine under Waldorf's castle" (what the hell does Waldorf want with all that salt?). Seriously, all of that is in the letter. So it clearly doesn't take getting to millions of levels before things start getting ridiculous.

Chernobyl Peace Prize
May 7, 2007

Or later, later's fine.
But now would be good.



Jerik posted:

You know, I know next to nothing about nWoD—my only experience with it has been as a player in a Prometheus one-shot—but if Night Horrors: Shunned by the Moon is at all representative, now I'm interested in finding out more about it. From Mors Rattus's posts, it seems, well, not flawless, but a lot more imaginative and evocative than I was expecting. The Hosts, in particular, strike as surprisingly good villains. "Surprisingly" because when I first read the brief description, I sort of expected that they were supposed to be villains just because, well, they were rats and bugs puppeting human bodies, and isn't that creepy and icky? And I didn't really expect them to come across as all that interesting. But no, it turns out that's not all there is to them at all; they're villains not just because the players are supposed to have a visceral reaction to creepy-crawlies in human suits, but because they're all legitimately doing terrible things, having a harmful effect on their surroundings, and making the world a worse place, and the PCs have good reason to oppose them. Like I said, I don't know much about nWoD, and I admit I've maybe been negatively disposed toward it because I'm enough of a traditionalist that I kind of had a knee-jerk reaction against completely rebooting and reimagining all the World of Darkness lines (even though I was never a huge fan of oWoD either), but if Night Horrors is typical of nWoD books I guess I ought to rethink that.

(On the other hand, Beast apparently goes a different route and has PCs that are legitimately doing terrible things and making the world a worse place, so everyone else has good reason to oppose them, but that doesn't seem to have really been what the developers were going for... but the impression I get from other posts here is that Beast is an uncharacteristic low point and doesn't really reflect nWoD as a whole. I hope that's the case.)
The way I like to think of nWoD/CoD is that when it hits it REALLY, REALLY hits, and when it misses, there's almost always some shell of something worth salvaging enough to make people put way too much time and effort into making it work, specifically because of those hits (see also, the periodic "no but maybe THIS would make Beast worthwhile," posting that happens before everyone gets sad and just plays the games that are already good and do all the things you'd end up doing with a Better Beast anyway).

If you want to learn more, I would recommend tracking down the Horror Recognition Guide. It's technically a Hunter in-universe fiction book (though presented as scans of articles, post-its, and case notes), but really it's just a great little short story collection with a unique format that really gets you in the right mindset for "cool but what the gently caress was that?"-type stuff.

Seatox
Mar 12, 2012


For all it's terrible faults, at least the 3rd edition Epic Level Handbook gave the Epic Rogue 1d6 more Sneak Attack damage every 2 levels. Honestly, the whole thing is probably worth a F&F take, but the stupid numbersmash and oh god so many stupid nickle and dime bonus feats makes me hesitant to even open the drat book again.

And that's not even getting into the :psyduck: worthy Epic Spell seed construction thing.

Tuxedo Catfish
Mar 17, 2007

You've got guts! Come to my village, I'll buy you lunch.


EimiYoshikawa posted:

Are there rules for bursting out of a Beast's forehead in a shower of indeterminate gore after it sucks you into its lair, Zeus and Athena style?

Because I almost want Beasts to still exist if so.

there's nothing of value there that couldn't be done with, say, a True Fae, an Abyssal entity, or just some original critter of your own design

Jerik posted:

Like I said, I don't know much about nWoD, and I admit I've maybe been negatively disposed toward it because I'm enough of a traditionalist that I kind of had a knee-jerk reaction against completely rebooting and reimagining all the World of Darkness lines (even though I was never a huge fan of oWoD either), but if Night Horrors is typical of nWoD books I guess I ought to rethink that.

The nWoD is so different from the oWoD that it doesn't really function as a replacement, it's its own animal entirely. This is slightly less true of the three core lines (Vampire, Werewolf, Mage), which definitely all have moments where it's like "okay this is definitely a response to / commentary on what the author liked or didn't like about the oWoD version", but this gets less and less true as you get into the minor splats, as well as something all the gamelines distanced themselves from more and more with their 2E versions and with more recent supplements.

And yeah, Shunned by the Moon is a solid entry in the generally-excellent Night Horrors series of antagonist/adventure hook books but it's definitely not unique or some kind of weird outlier. Werewolves are one of my favorite nWoD splats and their rogues' gallery is a big part of that, but if you really want to see the imaginative range of the nWoD at full blast check out Demon: The Descent.

Tuxedo Catfish fucked around with this message at 03:13 on Sep 2, 2019

mllaneza
Apr 28, 2007


Veteran, Bermuda Triangle Expeditionary Force, 1993-1952





Jerik posted:

Of course, that's level something-million, not a mere level 100, but another letter in the same issue of Dragon went on about Waldorf the "358th-level magic-user" who "created the nuclear bomb", used it to utterly obliterate "all of Greyhawk... except for a 3 x 4 mile island with a castle called Castle Waldorf", destroyed "[a]ll creatures from the Monster Manuals... due to large amounts of nuclear fallout", and set "[a]ll the deities" to "work in a salt mine under Waldorf's castle" (what the hell does Waldorf want with all that salt?). Seriously, all of that is in the letter. So it clearly doesn't take getting to millions of levels before things start getting ridiculous.

I spent 1979-1983 in a hippie-run alternative elementary school program. No structure, no curriculum, advance at your own pace. We played two games of Risk a day, Capture the Flag at 2 of 3 recesses, and miscellaneous other RPGs and wargames throughout the day. Basically a tie-dye military academy.

The Fantasy Trip was the most popular RPG. One of the kids decided that his character couldn't lose a particular fight. Then he declared he ran her through that fight a few hundred times. And awarded the XP. Then he picked a new fight he couldn't lose, repeat. He ended up with a proto-GURPS character with stats represented in scientific notation. He spent a surprising amount of time working on that character.

I figure Waldorf did pretty much the same thing but in AD&D.

Seatox posted:

For all it's terrible faults, at least the 3rd edition Epic Level Handbook gave the Epic Rogue 1d6 more Sneak Attack damage every 2 levels. Honestly, the whole thing is probably worth a F&F take, but the stupid numbersmash and oh god so many stupid nickle and dime bonus feats makes me hesitant to even open the drat book again.

If someone does the 3e Epic handbook, I'll follow up with the Black Company sourcebook. I don't know the fiddly bits, I just look at the Dominator as a level 75 Wizard and nod because that sounds right.

mllaneza fucked around with this message at 03:06 on Sep 2, 2019

Seatox
Mar 12, 2012


"Wise Master, what happened to the Beasts?"

"Oh, some clever Mastigos ascended to Archmagedom, and they got erased in the reality shift. No beasts in OUR timeline, just tiny echos in the Supernal of a concept now tied to the phrase 'And nothing of value was lost'"

The Lone Badger
Sep 24, 2007



I always have a little trouble remembering that Beast is an official part of nwod and not a fansplat. I mean I know it, but I always forget again.

juggalo baby coffin
Dec 2, 2007

How would the dog wear goggles and even more than that, who makes the goggles?






ECLIPSE PHASE X-RISKS - PART I FORGOT - I'LL EDIT IN THE HEADER IMAGE LATER!

Sorry I've not done any more posts on this lately, a true homie of mine died irl and I have been channeling my sadness into becoming obsessed with Transformers again for some reason. Also this book just isn't as fun as the Numenera bestiaries. It has all the same OOooOOoOooOOOOooo MYSTERIOUS bullshit that Numenera has, but none of the whimsical stuff.

Speaking of which:

Iktomi Kumobot

translator's note: kumo is japanese for spider
Threat level - Red

So the Iktomi were a race of alien spiders who left ruins across a whole bunch of planets in the gate network, then vanished. Like all vanished aliens, they left behind extremely hardwearing technology that survived until some other race of adventurers found them. One of these pieces of technology is the spiderbot, which has a laser beam, and the ability to curl up into a ball and roll around really fast like sonic the hedgehog. Their limbs can detach and interchange with each other, leading humanity to naturally assume that the Iktomi could also detach their limbs and swap em around. You know, kind of like how we made our cars be able to change tires to mirror our own ability to remove our hands and feet (???).

One thing I don't really get is that, at least in humanity's case, the TITANs made/activated the pandora gate in the solar system, which led to the apocalypse. But the Iktomi left ruins on multiple worlds in the gate network. Did they not have any AI stuff to get infected by the exsurgent virus? The kumobot suggests they did have AI stuff. Did they survive and overcome their TITAN equivalents? If so what was a bad enough dude to make them vanish?

There are no answers to any of these questions, and nobody in the setting seems to give a poo poo about these questions or this other race of advanced aliens.

Immolators


Drone up top and mother below
Threat level - Orange

Because we can never escape the lovely Glory module, the Glory virus is here again. Patient zero gets turned into a big pile of pussies, now tastefully redone as a more classical gibbering mouther type creature, and the other infectees get turned into horned up alien gently caress beasts. Their life cycle makes no sense. The drones all gently caress each other, then inject the eggs into the mother, then when the mother has enough eggs it tries to crash into the sun to release the eggs on the solar wind to do.. something?

Why do they need to breed? In the real world sexual reproduction came about as a more effective way of combining advantageous genetic traits to help the species survive, but this virus rewrites your genetic code to be a monster man. What different traits do they have? Why doesn't the nanovirus just make a whole bunch of eggs inside itself to start with? Why all this rigamarole?

The answer is because the inventor of the Glory virus is a hack, and wanted to steal some of that 'psychosexual horror' from Alien, but did it very badly. This exsurgent strain sucks, glory sucks, and to remind us of the lovely module Tara Yu pops up in the chat bubble on the Mother picture.

Jelly

IT'S SLIME TIME!
Threat level - Orange

This is another exsurgent, and it's literally just a dungeon slime from any RPG you could name. They're made of acid, have tendrils studded with toenails (for some reason), and can change shape so you can't really punch them to death. I wish I had more to say but this is literally just a classic rpg slime. The picture is cute at least. There's also a variant that can disguise itself as objects and even people, thus duplicating the Hollow from last post, which is a much more interesting version of the same idea.

Killer Spambot

it looks like a tapeworm for some reason
Threat level - Red

The Killer Spambots were one of the actually more successful attempts at directly fighting the TITANs. They were designed to just completely DDOS the TITANs' server brains, which they did a good job at. They were also designed to be self evolving, and started doing stuff the designers didn't expect. Some even hijacked 3D printers to build robot minions to destroy TITAN assets in the physical world.

Now you'd think 'drat, humanity actually managed to start loving up the TITANs with their own creations, I wonder what happened next?'. The answer is nothing. The text just smash cuts from 'hey the spambots even started taking the TITANs to clown town IRL' to 'Some of the spambots are still around in the present day'. Because of being required to be a monster in this book, rather than an interesting plot hook, the spambots who are still alive have somehow lost the ability to tell the difference between TITANs and anything else. So they'll spam you, they'll hack your house, hack your toaster, hack your 3D printer, hack your mom, gently caress your dad, and then make a robot to bite your dick.

The text doesn't say if the spambots are just constantly going around hacking stuff, if they lie dormant in disconnected server, or what. They are mysterious like that.

Land Anemone

it's like Speed 2 but on a bus!
Threat level - Orange

It's another bullshit alien monster. It's a sea anemone that lives in the forest instead. Aside from being called an anemone, it just behaves like a mimic octopus. It blends in with colour and texture, then gets you with its tentacles. It has a symbiotic relationship with little winged monkeys called Clown Sprites, who are cute but lure you into the land anemone because they're dickheads.

The Clown Sprite is not pictured.

Leftover Special

welcome to the edgelord block of this book
Threat level - Variable

I feel like these should be called 'leftovers special' not 'leftover special'. The first one implies a special made out of leftovers, the latter implies a special that IS left over. Anyway, they're twisted freakin sicko frankensteins built by the drat edgy exhumans because they're like the joker on crack and crime is funny to them. Apparently when you spend all your time trying to build a cool new body for yourself you end up with a lot of bits and bobs lying around, so the logical thing to do is make a frankenstein out of them. Most of the time these are controlled by a low level fork of the exhuman who built them, other time they put the ego of a victim in there to be freaked out, and even otherer times they just have an AI run it till the exhuman feels like hopping in the body to gently caress with normies.

There's like 50 variants of this thing, I'll cover a few:

Limbwalker - The one in the pic, apparently these are built mostly to impress other exhumans or freak out exhuman newbies. If the newbie gets too spooked by it they get killed, like when a crime gang makes you do drugs to get in and its a problem for the undercover cop in a movie.
Spider Head - It's the spider head from The Thing, but with robot spider legs and full of explosives. Everyone loves suicide bomber enemies.
Freezer Trap - This doesn't really seem like a monster so much as a trap. It's an exhuman's victim strapped to an operating table. The victim draws in the player asking for help, but SURPRISE! their limbs were replaced with freezing bombs that go off and freeze the drat team! Classic.
Snack Bar - A prey animal body with the ability to rapidly regenerate so the predator exhumans can just hunt it over and over and eat its sweet flesh. Apparently the egos who get sleeved in these get told they can become a predator if they kill one of the other predators while in the prey body, and sometimes it's even true.

Those wacky exhumans sure are twisted, like the drat movie SAW on crack!

Mantis Worm

Threat level - Red

Mantis worms are little worms who live in space. They live together in a big hive, and when anyone gets near the water they shoot out of the hive like little torpedos and embed in people's flesh. Once they embed in your flesh they puke up a bunch of acid to melt you then they eat the melted you. Again, not 100% sure why anyone would be on an alien planet and not wearing some kind of armoured space suit. Maybe it's one of those situations like D&D where the rules can't really represent armour just making you 100% immune to certain levels of damage, so these little guys can just act like little anti-materiel bullets. The text says they have sharp, pointy heads, but the art shows them looking like wise catfish.

Neurode

i know what i want, and i want it now / i want you, cause i'm mister brain
Threat level - Red

More exhumans, these guys want to be the smartest guys ever, and they do it by making their brains really big or having a lot of brains. And it kind of works, I guess. They mostly attack through drones and other robot proxies, cause they can control a lot of them using their super smart brains. They're pretty weak in person, being a giant brain, but because they are geniuses they are always one step ahead. This is not represented mechanically, so I guess they are meant to be used like a sci-fi Acerak from Tomb of Horrors, ie the GM invents some horrible hell fucker of a dungeon and the neurode takes credit.

Now see if I was a really smart brain monster, personally I would put myself in one of the many giant robot bodies on the market, maybe even design my own really good one using my smart brain, then live like Krang from teenage mutant ninja turtles. That's like the best of both worlds. You could still have a whole network of drones and cameras and traps and whatever, but you'd also have an extremely killy robot to live in.

The little chat bubble sidebar says that although most Neurodes claim to have purged themselves of primitive human emotion, the most effective way to get one to make mistakes is to remind it of its pre-neurode life. Probably by calling it a bitch nerd and threatening to swirly it. There's also a thing saying nobody has ever heard of one successfully becoming a watts-mcleod psychic giant brain, BUT MAYBE THAT'S CAUSE EVERYONE WHO SAW IT GOT KILLED BY IT OOOOO!!!!

(the psychic giant brain is not statted)

Although I've made fun of the Neurode a lot here, I do like it. The idea of achieving singularity level intelligence biologically is cool, brain monsters are cool, the implementation is just a bit lazy. It gets no special skills, it just has high skills and high intelligence stats. You could swap the stats of the Fetch and the Neurode and it would make no loving difference because neither have any unique powers, just a butt ton of skills.

I also don't get why only exhumans would want to push the limits of how smart you can get. There's the menton morph that is a standard body meant to be smarter, but if getting smarter is just as simple as daisy chaining regular brains or cyberbrains, why aren't non-evil people doing it?

Ny'knikinn

Threat level - Orange

So the TITANs, apparently having nothing better to do, hosed around in simulations putting animal brains in humanoid bodies to see which adapted better. The Freaking Epic Mantis Shrimp from the Oatmeal Comic Dot Com did the best for some reason, so the TITANs put their brains into the internet hyperbolic time chamber and let them evolve in human bodies for thousands of subjective years.

Then, in a thing cribbed directly from Chasm City by Alastair Reynolds, the TITANs used endocrine response conditioning to teach the Ny'knikinn everything they needed to know, from hunting humans to making more of themselves. Then they set them loose into the real world. They also cut off their lips to be more scarier.

These guys are just the Reavers from Firefly with a more elaborate origin story. They rape and kill people, and steal certain bodies to put a ny'knikinn brain into. But beyond the fact they speak in radio signals and pheromones, they're basically just regular human barbarian types.

THAT'S ALL FOR NOW, NEXT TIME ON X-RISKS - YET MORE EXHUMANS, AND A BUNCH OF lovely ROBOTS!

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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


I don't understand how you write the Glory module and then think it's a good idea to ever draw attention to the existence of the Glory module afterwards.

dwarf74
Sep 2, 2012






Buglord

PurpleXVI posted:

I've had GM's who could not understand why thieves felt like dogshit in "OSR" stuff for the most part. "But you've got a whole 25% chance to do something that's core to your concept!!!!! Why aren't you excited??????"

At least 2nd ed capped most of the potential wizard shenanigans and gave the physical classes more high-level absurdity to get up to.
Hah, yeah, it's absurd. And let's not even mention the double whammy of first finding, then removing, traps.

I think it's because they seemed so unique - they have their own special set of rules, never mind how poo poo it is. I don't think we fully grasped how utter poo poo they were until we started playing other games.

Jerik posted:

Regarding the 100th-level D&D characters' abilities, I suspect that any players who did play to ridiculously high levels kind of... weren't too scrupulous about sticking by the letter of the rules.
Yeah the adventure lays it out - nobody at TSR thought it was possible to legitimately get to 100th level (and they're basically right). Heck, the other (18th-22nd) set of pregens was still effectively impossible for most parties. I think that's why the pregens were included in the first place, and the 100th thing was meant as a weird thought exercise.

juggalo baby coffin
Dec 2, 2007

How would the dog wear goggles and even more than that, who makes the goggles?




Night10194 posted:

I don't understand how you write the Glory module and then think it's a good idea to ever draw attention to the existence of the Glory module afterwards.

the worst reason of all: because you don't think you did anything wrong

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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


Also if the monster's plan is to crash into the sun because its spores will survive that, the hell are you supposed to do to destroy the infection?

'Into the firey orb with ye' is usually the last word in setting stuff on fire.

juggalo baby coffin
Dec 2, 2007

How would the dog wear goggles and even more than that, who makes the goggles?




Night10194 posted:

Also if the monster's plan is to crash into the sun because its spores will survive that, the hell are you supposed to do to destroy the infection?

'Into the firey orb with ye' is usually the last word in setting stuff on fire.

there doesn't seem to be any way to destroy it

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

To witness titanic events is always dangerous, usually painful, and often fatal.





juggalo baby coffin posted:

there doesn't seem to be any way to destroy it
Then why don't they build the entire plane the morph frames out of the black box slime egg pussy mouth compounds?

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:

Also if the monster's plan is to crash into the sun because its spores will survive that, the hell are you supposed to do to destroy the infection?

'Into the firey orb with ye' is usually the last word in setting stuff on fire.

Yeah that's... kind of the issue with the Glory module. There's no way to actually complete it, pretty much. Except finding out what it is, running away and passing the buck to some other group of Firewall nerds while bailing for the nearest sunny exoplanet.

I mean, maybe nano-dissassembles could "disarm" the spores? Or maybe going straight into the sun rather than a carefully-planned grazing hit into the solar winds would destroy them? Good loving luck finding out, though, because the module never tells you. Moron goddamn writers.

dwarf74 posted:

Yeah the adventure lays it out - nobody at TSR thought it was possible to legitimately get to 100th level (and they're basically right). Heck, the other (18th-22nd) set of pregens was still effectively impossible for most parties. I think that's why the pregens were included in the first place, and the 100th thing was meant as a weird thought exercise.

If there's a 2e Deities & Demigods I want to see if a wrestling-specialized Combat & Tactics pure Fighter at <20 levels can headlock Cthulhu and win by tapping him out.


It occurs to me that a lot of these monsters have the same as that, I think it was Numenera bestiary that was reviewed a bit ago. No matter how much of a description we get of their inscrutable principles, goals and mindsets... basically all these things attack on sight, can't be negotiated with and the only method of interaction is combat. It makes for a very one-note universe.

Seatox
Mar 12, 2012


Dungeons and Dragons 3rd Edition Epic Level Handbook: NUMBER GO UP

Right. 3rd Edition D&D is (in)famous for a lot of things, some of them good, but so many of them terrible. The Epic Level Handbook is pretty drat stupid.

I will now quote the Introduction paragraph of this book, which will set the tone for the entire book.

we represent the lollpop guild posted:

"The rules in the Dungeons and Dragons(r) core rulebooks are not enough for you. Your game promises more than what the rules can contain. Your plots run deeper and your imagination burns stronger. Twenty levels of power are too few, character options are too limited, and the monsters are too weak. Until now. Welcome to the next level of power."

Chapter One: Charcacter, Skills & Feats

The chapter text starts off namedropping.

so epic posted:

"Baba Yaga. Conan the Babarian. Cu Chulainn. Elminster of Shadowdale. Elric of Melnibone. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. Gandalf. Gilgamesh. Hiwatha. Odysseus. These are names of power. Names of glory. Epic names. These heroes are examples of epic characters."

Right. There is a no-prize for pointing out which of these characters are not like the others, which of these characters don't belong.

There is an additional no-prize for pointing out that Elminster is entierly a D&D construction.

It goes on about how about how awesome and mighty Epic Characters are blah blah blah for a paragraph, before getting down to the actually important bit, which is that, per standard 3rd-ed rules, once you hit level 20, the tables run out and normal character progression ends. It then posits either letting people just farm XP until they get enough for level 21 (referring to um table 1-2, it's 210,000 XP), or maybe kinda make them do a quest or something, referring us to Chapter 3 (The Running an Epic Game chapter) for more details.

Then the real Math begins.

Once a character is level 21, they are counted as an Epic Character.

You don't get your usual class based saves, but instead every 2 levels you get a +1 epic bonus to all your saves. Your Base Attack Bonus doesn't go up, but instead you get a special +1 every odd level (So you get +0 to saves and +1 to attacks at level 21, +1 and +1 at level 22, +1 and +2 at level 23, +2 and +2 at level 24, and so on ad-infinitum). So, you don't get more attacks per round or other fightery stuff - as the helpful sidebar points out, having a billion attacks per round would slow the game right down.

There is a monster that shows up in Chapter 5 that can make 10 attacks per round against a single target, and has 100 base attacks.


Numbers get bigger, hooray.

Epic Characters still get ability increases every 4 levels, Class Skills and Cross Class Skills still have the same old caps, and you get a non-class specific feat slot every 3 levels.

Same old, same old D20.

Then the tables hell begins, because each PHB class AND a bunch of formerly 10 level prestige classes from the DMG gets it's own Epic Progression blurb.

Essentially, it boils down to "and we extrapolated a bunch of things from the core tables in the PHB". Everyone gets their hit-dice and skillpoints per level, a bunch of DCs go up with level, stuff that a class usually got every X levels still happens, bonus feats show up every few levels with their usual list of trap options.
Fighters get the biggest number of Bonus Feats, the biggest table of [st]trap options[/st]Bonus Feats, and the words "bonus feat" start to become meaningless.

Monks get shafted because their unarmed Ki attack damage boost formula stopped at level 16 to make room for their lovely capstone powers in the base game, naturally. They have the option of spending a bonus feat to fix that! They get one bonus feat per 5 levels, the lowest rate of all the core Epic Classes. Their unarmored movement speed keeps going up (they will never be as fast as a teleporting wizard), and they get a very slowly increasing boost to their Wisdom Armor Class Bonus.

Naturally, Spellcasters get their caster level increase. They don't, however, get more spell slots without spending Feats on them. The way the Improved Spell Capacity feat that allows this to happen works permits gross metamagic abuse. All hail the Supreme Casters.

Partial casters (Paladins'n'rangers) are naturally pretty much out of the game when it comes to spell-slinging due to this (And their sane, limited spell lists).

Full casters who spend the right feat also get access to Horrible Bullshit DM-May-I Epic Spell Development. In theory, a partial caster could use it, but they can't swing the Numberwang of the appropriate Class Skill hard enough to make the stupid DC tests.

Assassins, Arcane Archers, Blackguards, Loremasters, Dwarven Defenders and Shadowdancers get progression extrapolations, the words 'Bonus Feat' start to become even more meaningless, then they drop the 3rd edition Psionic Handbook Psion and Psychic Warrior on us! They get the same sort of spellcater/partial caster treatment, and I can't remember enough of the 3rd Ed's Psionics Handbook to make judgement otherwise.

There's a nice table of Wealth Per Level for if you're completly loving insane and want to make a character above 20th level to start with.

Then it's off to the EPIC PRESTIEGE CLASSES

Epic Pristiege Classes

Essentially, prestige classes where one of the qualifying thing is "be EPIC LEVEL".

The Agent Retriever requires Alignment: Any lawful. It requires 24 ranks of Gather Information. Bards (the class most likely to have this) are supposed to be ANY NONLAWFUL. The class description says "rangers, bards and rogues most commonly take this epic prestige class", a famously Lawful Aligned bunch of people.

If a character can twist themselves around the stupid alignment requirement to satisfy this, it gives access to a supernatural ability to research a person or item and thus get a continual "discern location" spell against them, which is nice. They also get a huge +10 bonus to the track skill every 5 levels, and daily uses of Plane Shift/Ethereal Jaunt.

The Cosmic Descryer is not actually a scryer or diviner, but a summon spammer and plane traveler. Nice easy access requirements for a Cleric, not actually good for Wizards because it requires Gate and Planar Ally, not Planar Binding. It gives Hitdice bonuses on allowable summons, obtains "naturalization" for planes visited that protects from being Banished etc by the natives of that plane, can extend a Gate spell to last all day, and finally can turn on "Cosmic Connection" for a minute per class level, letting them Dimension Door at will and burn 5 hitpoints for any number of +1s on their caster level, or a bunch of different rolls.

The Divine Emissary is Paladin 2.0. The most notable bonuses are access to one of their god's domains ala cleric, a Greater Planar Ally ability, and a once a day +20 bonus to an attack using their god's favored weapon.

The Epic Infiltrator is another rogueish class, yet the alignment restriction is "any nonchaotic". They get cover identities that can fool divinations re: alignment, but still get hit by Protection from Evil, Holy Smite and their alignment opposites. They get more skills for the skill-monkey, a minor scrying power, and Read Thoughts and Mind Blank as n/per day.

The Guardian Paramount is a rogue/X multiclass jobbie for bodyguarding, and can share their Uncanny Dodge with someone, set up an effect to take damage in place of someone (and convert the damage to subdual damage), force dice rerolls with their Adjust Probability power, and finally True Resurrect anyone they've used their powers on once a day every 6 levels.

The High Proselytizer is a firebrand talky cleric, who gets a sanctuary effect while preaching along with mind controlling people who follow the same god/alignment (Well, it acts like Charm Person, which is pretty mind controlly). As they stack up more levels in the prestige class they add to it with laying on hands to heal diseases/poisons, ability to explode people not mind controlled in various ways.

The Legendary Dreadnaught is fighter 2.0. It is also The Juggernaut of X-men fame. It's two gimmick powers are Unstoppable and Unmovable. Unstoppable has the neat quality of letting the Dreadnaught break Walls of Force by punching them (when usually you need a disintigrate spell). Standard fighter dullness otherwise.

The Perfect Wight is the true Rogue 2.0, no alignment nonsense, can turn invisible, can use telekinesis to pick locks, can turn incorporeal or into a shadow.

The Union Sentinel is a loving cop for extraplanar capitalists (the Arcanes) who show up in the "example epic level setting" later in the book. They get Imprisonment, Dimensional Anchor and Forcecage as class powers, as well as a thing that lets them seal off a Gate or portal by standing next to it.

And that's the Epic Class war. Next up, skills, feats and more tables of skills and feats and feats and skills...

Edit: and i notice i spelt prestige wrong twice. I will let this stand, because word has lost all meaning to me, much like bonus and feat.

Seatox fucked around with this message at 05:33 on Sep 2, 2019

TheNamedSavior
Mar 10, 2019



juggalo baby coffin posted:

dr bright and also dr 'alto' clef, whose name is a musical note and his face cant be seen under the anime shadow of his hat, and hes also satan or cthulhu or some stupid poo poo?

man the scp foundation got stupid. it started out neat and then slowly became a Rifts sourcebook

Neither of those guys even write for the foundation very much anymore. AND neither of them even show up very much at all anymore in the articles. If anything it STARTED stupid because of the influence from 4chan, and got BETTER as time went on.

Chernobyl Peace Prize posted:

In the last couple thousands there's been a couple SCPs I liked (Reagan Cut Up While Talking, the weird observation station that extends into a weird sun-realm that would be right at home in a Night Horrors book) but then there's also the whole stupid attempted-lore things like the Mr. whatever rando wacky series and a whole buncha bullshit.

The Church seems like a neat adventure hook for exactly one session of "hey we gotta Sacred Hunt...that guy." "wait why?" "Listen we just do ok" and then digging into that

e: Also I would argue SCP went to poo poo when they changed the classification from "degree of how bad this is to deal with" to "how hard is it to contain" because ??? who cares about that, gimme existential threats at the top weight class.
Mr. [blank] series is literally 1% of the SCPs and "a whole bunch of bullshit" literally means nothing in terms of criticism. The Mister series isn't even all that lore heavy compared to 90% of the "lore" stuff. A weird scientist made a bunch of dudes who are basically living toys and then a bunch of reality manipulating stoners decided to rip off the idea and that's literally all the lore you need to know. You don't like it? Good. There's literally hundreds of others that are completely unrelated to the scientist dude or anything lore related.

Reagen Cut Up While Talking is literally by now one of the OLDEST SCPs on the site, i am convinced that none of you have actually read the goddamn site since 2011 or just looked at the top-rated SCPs (that are generally from series 1 and only top-rated because they're old and popular enough) and decided that it was good enough source for what the site is like.

Really? There's nothing interesting about the idea of an existential threat that actually is more of a mild annoyance than a threat or one that is actually HELPFUL to the awful morally grey foundation, that captures the weird monsters and poo poo just as much for their own benefit as they do "protecting" humanity?

oriongates posted:

SCP foundation went to crap when the tone shifted so it was no longer considered acceptable to have infinite pizza SCPs and cosmic vending machine SCPs in the breakroom. :colbert:
Literally, almost all of the series 5 scps have "goofy" names and scps made in the last few years include poo poo such as a cute robot girl made by lesbian stoners. And one of the most popular SCPs in the last year is one that is a dark comedy about Al Gore being a weird alien who the foundation rigged the election to stop! Ironically its one of the few recent ones that's included at least two of the scientist characters, and one of them is a clone of the character that is clearly meant to be annoying, and the other does literally barely anything.

juggalo baby coffin posted:

ive not checked it out in a while, i should have a look again. i was into it pretty early on but it just got stupider and stupider over time, like they had all this awful fiction about the scientists and this stupid loving cyborg vampire guy who was unkillable and had katanas.
Able, if that's who the guy you're speaking of is, literally is considered a joke by most authors nowadays and is barely referenced in any other scps because most people realize that the idea is dumb and edgy. There's actually been attempts to make the guy a less stupid and lovely article. But pretty much the only reason why the article is still up is because it's considered iconic or some poo poo. But most writers on the wiki don't really care for it.

Dave Brookshaw
Jun 27, 2012

No Regrets


Mors Rattus posted:

As a side note, this implies that the Mother’s Lair is in the Worldsoul. Mages have problems with the soul rending winds there, and it is the place where the nonhuman dreams of the world go. Including werewolves, which is why they’re fine there, unlike anyone else.

“Implies?”

What Beasts call the Mother’s land is the Dreaming Earth, a subset of the Anima Mundi. The Primordial Dream is the Temenos realm of Fear. Werewolves have always been immune to the Ecstatic Wind. This whole section is taking things from Astral Realms and thinking how Beasts, given limited context and a tendency to think it’s all about them, would interpret them.

Like, of course the environmental danger of being outside the human soul is the Mother feeding on them. Of course it is.

(Wink)

Jerik
Jun 24, 2019

I don't know what to write here.

PurpleXVI posted:

If there's a 2e Deities & Demigods I want to see if a wrestling-specialized Combat & Tactics pure Fighter at <20 levels can headlock Cthulhu and win by tapping him out.

It's called Legends & Lore rather than Deities & Demigods, but there is a 2E version, yes. It doesn't have Cthulhu in it, though. It does have most of the other pantheons from the 1E Deities & Demigods, however, and it's... not really any better about cultural sensitivity and mythological accuracy. I mean, it's not a straight copy from 1E; there are some changes; and some of those changes really are for the better, but they're pretty much balanced by other changes for the worse. (The head of the American Indian pantheon in 2E, for example, is the "Great Spirit"...)

I don't think you could really do the same kind of character-versus-god comparison with the 2E Legends & Lore anyway, because unlike the 1E Deities & Demigods (or the 3E Deities & Demigods, for that matter) it doesn't attempt to give combat statistics for the gods. It does give combat statistics for their avatars, but that's not exactly the same thing, and the avatars' stats aren't nearly as ridiculous as the gods' statistics in 1E. Zeus, for example, in 1E is a 25th-level cleric/17th-level fighter/20th-level magic-user/20th-level illusionist/15th-level bard with 400 hit points and with 25 in all his ability scores. In 2E, Zeus's avatar is just a 20th-level fighter (with, admittedly, a few special abilities) with 160 hit points, a Strength of 22, and an 18 in all his other ability scores. So, yeah, a well-constructed PC probably could beat a 2E avatar, but that's by design; the gods' avatars are supposed to be on the same level as high-level (but not ridiculously-high-level) characters.

I'm planning on reviewing the 2E Legends & Lore eventually, too, but there are some other 1E books I want to get through first. After I get through Deities & Demigods, though, I expect my next few reviews to go a lot quicker... much of the reason why it's taking me so long to finish Deities & Demigods is because I'm trying to research each mythos and each god and analyze what the book's presentation gets right or wrong. That won't be an issue for the next few books I want to review, so they should take me a lot less time... I just have to get through Deities & Demigods first. (In retrospect, this maybe wasn't the best choice for my first review here.)

Seatox
Mar 12, 2012


Dave Brookshaw posted:

“Implies?”

What Beasts call the Mother’s land is the Dreaming Earth, a subset of the Anima Mundi. The Primordial Dream is the Temenos realm of Fear. Werewolves have always been immune to the Ecstatic Wind. This whole section is taking things from Astral Realms and thinking how Beasts, given limited context and a tendency to think it’s all about them, would interpret them.

Like, of course the environmental danger of being outside the human soul is the Mother feeding on them. Of course it is.

(Wink)

The Old Man and the Beast would be a very, very short story. It would, at least, have a happy ending (unlike all the other stories involving the Old Man).

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





Is it bad that imagining a Beast stumbling past the Sidereal Wastes and thinking they've found the true lair of their Dark Mother, only to find some mages hanging out down there doing Mage Things, is bringing me joy? Or a Beast getting hunted by woofs in dreams. Just generally learning that actually the Anima Mundi has a lot more going on than just their deal.

...actually what I want is Dahhak to be pointedly mean to a Beast until they get booted from the Anima Mundi by the Ecstatic Wind. That would be hilarious.

Communist Zombie
Nov 1, 2011


juggalo baby coffin posted:

Killer Spambot

it looks like a tapeworm for some reason
Threat level - Red

This would be an interesting setting detail if they just put some effort on where you would encounter them, and have them not lose ability to recognize non TITAN stuff. Ideas I had just after reading it:
  • They're in either random servers (theyre originally malware, and in the Fall not being tied to any specific server would be an asset), organizations that use Fall/BF equipment, and organizations that regularly deal with TITANs
  • Almost all transhuman traffic doesnt trigger them, but the kind of stuff that would be in a firewall team or a group of PCs would. Which could be played for the horror angle, he who fights monsters...etc.
  • The more 'indescrimanate' ones could be from the Jovians, retuned to think transhumanity as TITANs, to either protect their stuff or as low level cyberwar stuff.

TheNamedSavior
Mar 10, 2019



Halloween Jack posted:

It's true. When Lovecraft's protagonist says with amazement and horror (paraphrased) "What did they do that we would not have done in their place? They were men!" that's his own perspective as a racist who loved the British Empire.

Why aren't there more things that include "Not-British Empire" as villains for the (HOPEFULLY multi-cultural and diverse) PCS to murder? Literally, the only thing that I can think of where the villains are CLEARLY stand-ins for them (read: one of the WORSE and most brutal empires in history that straight up SUCCESSFULLY committed genocide on multiple cultures!) are Granbretan in Micheal Moorcock's Runestaff books. And War Of The Worlds, ironically, H.G. was a racist rear end in a top hat who considered Jewish people a plague. And yet even back when the empire was at probably one of it's strongest points did a racist lover of eguences agree that the British colonialists were awful people.

gently caress Elder Things. Shoggoths were just slaves who got a bad deal handed to them. Let their rotting corpses lay dead in the snow while they gain the freedom that they deserve!

Jerik
Jun 24, 2019

I don't know what to write here.

Seatox posted:

Right. 3rd Edition D&D is (in)famous for a lot of things, some of them good, but so many of them terrible. The Epic Level Handbook is pretty drat stupid.

I actually ran a 3E campaign where the PCs reached epic levels and I used this book... but that was only because the campaign went so long (the PCs started at first level), and even then it only barely got into the epic levels; the PCs were in the low 20s when the campaign ended. The end of the campaign did come a bit quicker than I'd originally intended due to the death of a player, but even if that hadn't happened it probably wouldn't have gone on for much longer; it was basically wrapping up at that point anyway.

That being said, yeah, I agree the Epic Level Handbook is pretty ridiculous, and was something that didn't really need to exist—and that even if it did have a reason to exist, it could have been done much better. Still, there's some interesting stuff in it if you look past the absurd and broken rules. I've converted a handful of monsters from the Epic Level Handbook to 5E for various books I'm hoping to eventually put up on the DMs Guild (though since I tend to sabotage myself by working on way too many projects at once, I don't know when I'm ever going to get them done—I'm hoping for January, but we'll see how feasible that turns out to be). But most of them are on the lower CR end of the ELH monsters, and even then I've toned them down and not tried to faithfully reproduce the 3E versions, because yeah, nobody ever needs a CR 57 monster that can make a hundred attacks a round.

AmiYumi
Oct 10, 2005
The Biden administration is actively fighting to withhold COVID vaccinations from our child concentration camps and pointing out that somebody used the word "democrat" as an adjective will not make that fact go away

I pulled out a bunch of previous-edition books to double-check, and KAMB! has been all over the drat place since the beginnings on what Outfits are and do. The next update, which I should have up in a day or two, has changed to be a comparison post instead because there is no consistency at all for a game that has otherwise been "pretty much the same but with new art and slight improvements" for 20 years.

Other wackiness: I was right in that there used to be better rules on handing out Victory Points (with a base recommendation of 12 VPs per baby returned to the caves, 6 VPs per other kobold killed and/or eaten, and 1 VP per act of general kobold mayhem), and of all things a full 3x3 Alignment Square. True Neutral was "Blonde". Yeah, guess how often that came up, when it was part of RAW in the edition I played most and I didn't remember it existing at all.



Okay, which of the SCPs you wrote did we insult to get you this mad on a tangent?

Seatox
Mar 12, 2012


Jerik posted:

I actually ran a 3E campaign where the PCs reached epic levels and I used this book... but that was only because the campaign went so long (the PCs started at first level), and even then it only barely got into the epic levels; the PCs were in the low 20s when the campaign ended. The end of the campaign did come a bit quicker than I'd originally intended due to the death of a player, but even if that hadn't happened it probably wouldn't have gone on for much longer; it was basically wrapping up at that point anyway.

That being said, yeah, I agree the Epic Level Handbook is pretty ridiculous, and was something that didn't really need to exist—and that even if it did have a reason to exist, it could have been done much better. Still, there's some interesting stuff in it if you look past the absurd and broken rules. I've converted a handful of monsters from the Epic Level Handbook to 5E for various books I'm hoping to eventually put up on the DMs Guild (though since I tend to sabotage myself by working on way too many projects at once, I don't know when I'm ever going to get them done—I'm hoping for January, but we'll see how feasible that turns out to be). But most of them are on the lower CR end of the ELH monsters, and even then I've toned them down and not tried to faithfully reproduce the 3E versions, because yeah, nobody ever needs a CR 57 monster that can make a hundred attacks a round.

The Prismasaurus is an adorable rainbow powered dinosaur and worth saving.

Jerik
Jun 24, 2019

I don't know what to write here.

Seatox posted:

The Prismasaurus is an adorable rainbow powered dinosaur and worth saving.

That... actually happens to be one of the monsters I've converted. So, uh, hopefully if I get my act together and actually get things done when I hope to, it'll be appearing in a 5E book on the DM's Guild in early 2020...

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juggalo baby coffin
Dec 2, 2007

How would the dog wear goggles and even more than that, who makes the goggles?




i think the biggest problem with a lot of bestiaries, especially for non-sword&sorcery settings, is they stick too closely to the OG monster manual format. When I look at x-risks or one of the numenera books, what I see is this:

- Some neat ideas that abruptly terminate in 'it tries to kill everything it sees, here are the stats'
- A shitload of generic filler baddies just there as chaff for the players to fight
- A couple of gems that don't get explored as much as they should

My suggested fix for this would be to instead adopt the 13th age style bestiary:

- Lower monster count
- MUCH more detail on the monsters
- A section for each monster detailing how you might implement it a campaign, different origin stories, different variants, showing where you could take the idea
- A bunch of variant stat blocks for the monsters and variant abilities you can use

I think if either X-risks or Numenera took this approach it would be a much more satisfying read, and a much more useful game master tool. You don't need to fill your book with 75 different loving alien dogs or robots that attack you for no reason. Both EP and Numenera are meant to be less dungeon crawlers and more like I guess a classic Dr Who story. There's a mystery, there's a strange situation with a threat, and your group needs to find the solution for it. And the solution is very rarely just brute force violence. But the only tools you're given for either game are for a brute force violence approach.

Like EP can't even pull off what it says it's going for in its own sample adventures. Glory doesn't even seem to have a win state for the players, and using any of your non-combat abilities either gets you nowhere (cause the writers didnt bother to write what would happen if you tried to negotiate with the baddies) or gets you the loving space virus that kills you.

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