Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
Daeren
Aug 18, 2009

YER MUSTACHE IS CROOKED

Kurieg posted:

Jesus Christ why do they do this to me.

I take it they didn't learn then.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Loxbourne
Apr 6, 2011

Tomorrow, doom!
But now, tea.

Strange Matter posted:

It's kind of nice how the whole time through Godlike the timeline is being fairly ginger with Talent influence over real events, mostly relegating them to side missions with minimal relevance to actual events, and then Omaha Beach happens and it's total craziness. Especially the image of whole chunks of the beach being teleported into the ocean.

Just reading that entry gave me the good kind of chills. Superpowered D-Day where both sides throw thousands of Talents into the meat grinder (and given how the Talent seems to work, soldiers all over the place suddenly discovering powers of their own) sounds amazing, and I really really want to see it realised somehow.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

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

Daeren posted:

I take it they didn't learn then.
The insatiable are people possessed by the yawning hunger of the cataclysmic nothingness that occupied the world before the rise of sentient thought.

quote:

Null Synper feeds solely from the fear and ruin she instigates on the internet through hate groups and active trolling. She starves herself of a true meal of flesh and bone, afraid of leaving her safe hovel, and finding it far too easy to prey on those who would take their own lives for her.
No Matt didn't learn a single loving thing.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012

Evil Mastermind posted:

Hard to say, because your Possibility points are also your XP, your salvage-bad-roll points, and what you have to pay out each adventure to keep using certain abilities.

I think this has come up before, but the published Torg adventures were also incredibly loving stingy in handing out Possibility points, so by the time you got to the dramatic climax the players were almost certainly running on empty.

Even worse, the mechanics for dramatic scenes stacked the odds against the players with the intention that they'd be forced to dig deep, throw in as many cards as they could, and spend Possibilities liberally to overcome the odds in suitably exciting fashion. Except, of course, by the time a dramatic scene rolled around the players wouldn't have the Possibilities they needed for that sort of thing.

Robindaybird
Aug 21, 2007

Neat. Sweet. Petite.

And again the question is raised: Why do you want to play a Beast when you can play far less appalling monsters.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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

Selachian posted:

I think this has come up before, but the published Torg adventures were also incredibly loving stingy in handing out Possibility points, so by the time you got to the dramatic climax the players were almost certainly running on empty.

Even worse, the mechanics for dramatic scenes stacked the odds against the players with the intention that they'd be forced to dig deep, throw in as many cards as they could, and spend Possibilities liberally to overcome the odds in suitably exciting fashion. Except, of course, by the time a dramatic scene rolled around the players wouldn't have the Possibilities they needed for that sort of thing.

This kind of poo poo is why heroes in Warhams have multiple fate-points and the rerolls/extra actions use of them refreshes EVERY GAME DAY, not even every session.

And they have nothing to do with gaining EXP. And also the 'core' campaign the system intended (Ashes of Middenheim, Spires of Altdorf, Forges of Nuln) gives a Fate Point for success on *every* step of the way. Whatever problems those books have (and god do they have many) they sure didn't skimp on giving them players EXP, Fate, and other rewards for heroic deeds.

Incidentally, one of the big mechanical weaknesses for Vampires in all contexts? No Fate Points. Ever.

RocknRollaAyatollah
Nov 26, 2008

Lipstick Apathy

Robindaybird posted:

And again the question is raised: Why do you want to play a Beast when you can play far less appalling monsters.

Beasts, less appealing than supernatural rapists.

Does anyone like or actively play Beast? I know it's unpopular here but is anyone really buying into it other than to help Onyx Path in some misguided notion of "funding this bad thing will get me more of the things I actually like?" It's just terrible all the way down and I was alright with half the bloat and excesses of the World of Darkness during their era as a player and customer.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:
In case there was any question: yes I will be F&Fing this piece of poo poo.

Kellsterik
Mar 30, 2012
It's pretty popular on the Onyx Path official forums and RPGnet from what I've seen.

I briefly dated a guy who was also into World of Darkness stuff, and he said Beast and playing a living nightmare sounded really cool and appealing to him. He was queer and had a very unsupportive family growing up so it made me kinda sad that he would identify with a horrible fear monster in the way Beast frames itself :/

He was also the archetypal "furry who likes Werewolf" though. So he might be the target audience!

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion


Despite being terrible in pretty much every way, there's apparently a market for the the have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too nonsense Beast pulls for it to have an audience.

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

Evil Mastermind posted:

I don't know how many of y'all know about the details of Torg's metaplot endgame but I feel confident it'll be one of the dumbest things ever reported in this thread series.

Holy poo poo yes.

I'm a hardcore grognard and when I read the Living Land Sourcebook for the first time; even I went 'What the hell is this poo poo?'. I love Tarzan and the Phantom and Sheena and Jack Armstrong, and I was psyched to get a savage land game and then the full ramifications of transformation sank in...

People use the phrase 'You have to earn your fun...' and TORG took that and ran with it. to a point that somebody like me that adores ludicrously crunchy rules like old FGU games relied on thought was too much. The lack of thought in gameplay and what actually makes a game fun and having your head up your own rear end in the metaplot craze, combine to a brutal extent which ends in a crescendo of dumb that I don't think that has ever been equaled in an RPG.

I love the hell out of TORG's concept and always will, but the implementation is so horrendous, even grogs think it's rear end and worthlessly complicated.

EverettLO
Jul 2, 2007
I'm a lurker no more


Legend of the Five Rings 1e: Night of a Thousand Screams



The Night of a Thousand screams was an adventure module for L5R first edition. A number of people have mentioned it on here, and anecdotally it seems to have been one of the more popular adventures written for first edition. It was intended to be used in conjunction with the very popular and very well written City of Lies box set created by thread favorite Greg Stoltze. The adventure is set in the city of Ryoko Owari which is analogous to a Rokugani Las Vegas or Macau, although with a larger footprint and political importance to Rokugan. Unfortunately, the adventure doesn’t quite live up to its source material and has a poor understanding of 1e L5R rules combined with a lot of railroading. The intro to the adventure claims that it’s made to answer the question “What can I do to add more combat to my game without killing off all the player characters?” In this it fails because without careful control by the GM those characters are all going to die hard. All editions of L5R are notably deadly for PCs in combat, but first edition is worse than most since the writers invariably fail to understand the brutal potential of their combat encounters.

The adventure begins with a set piece at a nice sake house called the Inn of the Orange Blossom. As with many first edition adventures the writers generally assume your characters are magistrates or other authority figures, and so the characters arrive at the inn just after their shift ends at 5:30 PM. The entire adventure runs of a very tight time frame and is completed in a single (in game) night.

5:30 PM

Your characters arrive at the Inn of the Orange Blossom and, as is traditional, they have to check their weapons and armor at the door. Since they’re probably the cops, they get taken to a special room for extra special service. The inn is filled with ronin and one table of important looking Crane Clan samurai. A fairly simple courtier skill roll tells the PCs that they’re merchants in service to a local Crane daimyo.

Now comes the fun part that most people remember from this adventure. The players roll initiative despite nothing much happening. Suddenly an oni smashes in through the front wall of the inn and begins to massacre patrons. Now one thing you should know: oni are the boss monsters of L5R. Even high level PCs have a better than even chance of dying to oni and odds are characters playing this adventure are not high level. Oni typically have very good attack rolls, one hit kill damage rolls, and are often invulnerable without being attacked by special weapons.

The Oni no Chizaro here is no exception. It has 8k3 to hit and 5k3 damage for three attacks that all have a fair chance of putting taint into your characters. If you don’t know anything about the L5R setting, any amount of taint is basically giving your character something like evil leprosy: it can’t be cured, it gets worse over time and if anyone finds out you have it you’re basically barred from Rokugani society. It’s a slow death sentence that ends with your character a mindless zombie or evil undead. The Oni requires a TN of 30 to hit and normal weapons do 25% damage to it. All this adds up to an enemy that would TPK a party in full armor with weapons drawn, but your characters specifically don’t have weapons or armor on. To make matters worse the Oni drops off minor spawn that look like it but are much smaller and weaker. Their stats make them much more manageable (although at TN 25 to hit, still a challenge to hurt) but they still potentially deliver taint on a hit.

Now I should mention that the specific intent is that your characters are not intended to fight the Oni at this point. The Oni is there to attack the Crane table and doesn’t care one bit about your characters. I don’t think the writers spent too much time considering how players think, though. In my own experience the players went right for their weapons and dove right into suicidal combat that they could never, ever win. I may be in the minority, but I think most players see a monster attacking innocent people and think that’s the adventure. I had to stop the players and fully explain the hopelessness of the situation just to prevent them from killing themselves.



The best case scenario is that the characters manage to save the life of a single one of the Crane merchants. Likely the only way to ensure this is to put their own characters in the way. In five rounds the local SWAT team, the Thunder Guard, arrives and the Oni retreats. It covers its retreat by dropping a few minor oni for the players and guards to deal with. If one of the Crane merchants survive then the players can find out that he has no idea why the Oni attacked him.

6:00 PM

The PCs are left in the devastated Inn while the innkeeper mourns his now dead daughter and worries that people will think his Inn has been tainted and stop coming. The PCs answer questions for the Thunder Guard and generally fail to try to track the Oni.

While they’re waiting around, the local Crane Clan magistrate, Doji Oruku, arrives and introduces himself to the players. He’s basically a GMPC set in the adventure to provide clues and prodding if the PCs lose their way. He directs the local underclass (I’ll avoid using the term ‘eta’ that the adventure drops all over the place) people to begin removing bodies since touching dead bodies is horrendously taboo in Rokugan. With that task complete, he sits the players down to tea and questions them about what they witnessed.



Shortly after the tea arrives, an underclass boy comes running in from the poor part of town to tell the PCs that bandits have begun to attack the crematorium where the bodies were delivered. They appear to be trying to steal corpses and have driven off the weaponless underclass people. The PCs and their new Crane friend go charging off to confront the bandits and find around 15 to 20 of them rooting through bodies.

Normally combat against 15 to 20 enemies would be another long suicide, but in this case the bandits immediately flee at the sight of the law. A few are left to provide an easy combat encounter that includes the bandits using bodies as shields and throwing chunks of dead flesh in order to use the PCs taboos against them. Victory is almost inevitable and the PCs will soon notice that the bandits were rifling through the clothes of the Crane clan samurai corpses. If they were smart enough to keep some of the bandits alive, they might coerce one into admitting that someone called ‘Silence’ hired them to attack the crematorium. They were directed to steal anything left on the bodies of the Crane samurai and were set to meet back up with Silence later. One bandit has a bag with 10 koku (a very large sum of money) with a Crab clan mon on it.

At least six bandits got away and Oruku guides the PCs into chasing them down. He goes after one and tells the PCs that he will meet back up with them at the Inn in an hour. The chase itself begins the next part of the adventure and will be covered next time.

Prism
Dec 22, 2007

yospos
I mean, eta is appropriate for the time period but I would also not use the term when their descendants are still discriminated against, especially given its literal meaning.

These authors really didn't know what they were doing in either balance or tone, did they?

PantsOptional
Dec 27, 2012

All I wanna do is make you bounce
I am 99% certain that this is the module that caused me to quit L5R. I had made a Crab shugenja whose entire deal was that he was excellent at obliterating Shadowlands creatures and terrible at everything else. Naturally he was away from the Wall for some real fish-out-of-water shenanigans.

The GM started me on this module for my first session with the character, said it's perfect for me. I think there was maybe one other PC there at the start.

This goddamn Oni burst through the wall and I thought that it was a moment to showcase what I'm good at before going on to fail a shitload of etiquette rolls. So I unloaded on it with a Jade Strike - a spell that's specifically designed to blow up Shadowlands creatures and also the spell that I had specialized in - and did a shitload of damage. I don't remember how much it was but between my specialization in Bustin' and a good die roll it was a ridiculous amount.

Nothing happened.

I tried again the next round, figuring that it was just super tough. Again I got an absurdly high damage roll. Between the two attacks it was well over a hundred damage.

Nothing happened. Well, that's not exactly true: the Oni killed the gently caress out of me.

Later on, the GM took me aside and explained that the monster was immune to Jade Strike, which I found to be mildly improbable. I suspect that he simply decided to GM fiat the immunity since if I killed the Oni in the first fight, the rest of the module was a moot point. But if that was the case, then why run it specifically for my character?

I realize that the system isn't to blame (at least not 100%) but it left such a bad taste in my mouth that I never really went back.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015
This adventure has a certain Wick-flavor to it. Of course the adventure will punish the players for indulging in their D&Dish murder hobo instincts. Proper samurai know their place and capabilities :colbert:

And man, I think Beast is stealing my idea for a parody splat about internet losers.

Doresh fucked around with this message at 19:17 on Jan 12, 2017

ZorajitZorajit
Sep 15, 2013

No static at all...

Prism posted:

I mean, eta is appropriate for the time period but I would also not use the term when their descendants are still discriminated against, especially given its literal meaning.

These authors really didn't know what they were doing in either balance or tone, did they?

I'm gonna guess it's the weeb compulsion to use weeb words as part of their keikaku to teach you Japanese.

What I'm wondering is why not just start the adventure with the PCs arriving with the Thunder Guard, or very shortly thereafter. Y'know, when they have their first opportunity to DO anything. There's not even a bullshit GMPC to beat the Oni singlehandedly.

RocknRollaAyatollah
Nov 26, 2008

Lipstick Apathy
This edition of L5R was made before the age of Google and Wikipedia so in their defense I imagine the context of the term was lost on them and there wasn't a source readily available to review. Conversely that doesn't really excuse their use of the term, which is contextually correct to a degree, because they could have used burakumin instead.

The 80's and 90's existed in an era where you could get away with a great deal when dealing with subjects like the Japanese language and Japanese culture so not as much attention was usually paid to them as today. Alternatively, military information had to be thoroughly researched because every library probably had copies of Jane's and grog's love nothing more than arguing about the finer points of Warsaw Pact weaponry vs. NATO weaponry. That's pretty much the lens you have to view this stuff through.

RocknRollaAyatollah fucked around with this message at 19:59 on Jan 12, 2017

EverettLO
Jul 2, 2007
I'm a lurker no more


I don't doubt the authors didn't know the social context of the term and it wasn't intended to be offensive.

PantsOptional posted:

bad game story

This is just bad GMing. It was a perfect opportunity for the Oni to flee in pain (since it was going to get away anyway), cover its exit with mini-oni, and your samurai is the hero of the hour. On the other hand...

ZorajitZorajit posted:

What I'm wondering is why not just start the adventure with the PCs arriving with the Thunder Guard, or very shortly thereafter. Y'know, when they have their first opportunity to DO anything. There's not even a bullshit GMPC to beat the Oni singlehandedly.

This is probably a much better answer than getting in the fight at all. The problem with auto-lose battles is that if the players don't know it's an auto-lose battle they'll get creative and get themselves killed. The limited options in CRPGs makes the situation work in ways it will never work at the tabletop, but authors keep trying to cram them in.

JackMann
Aug 11, 2010

Secure. Contain. Protect.
Fallen Rib
Fun thing. My buddy didn't know you were supposed to lose the fight at the beginning of the first Legacy of Cain game. He kept restarting his Playstation trying to figure out how to beat it for like an hour.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015
I've heard similar stories. Fun times.

EverettLO posted:

This is probably a much better answer than getting in the fight at all. The problem with auto-lose battles is that if the players don't know it's an auto-lose battle they'll get creative and get themselves killed. The limited options in CRPGs makes the situation work in ways it will never work at the tabletop, but authors keep trying to cram them in.

This kind of thing works a lot better in far less lethal, where the actual aftermath of the fight largely depends on plot convenience. Funnily enough, this is often the case with games that try to emulate CRPGs, like Super Console.

SirPhoebos
Dec 10, 2007

WELL THAT JUST HAPPENED!

I always have mixed feelings about L5R. There are so many cool bits about the setting but at the same time I feel like whole swaths need to be rewritten since they seem to exist for the sole purpose of loving over players, no matter how stupid it seems.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008

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


Part 16b: Prehistories

The next two chapters are a breakdown of Baruk Kaah's home cosm of Takta Ker and of the religion of the edeinos.

(In the edeinos language, "Takta Ker" does translate directly to "Living Land"; the edeinos are a pretty straightforward people when you get right down to it.)

Takta Ker has five major landmasses, each covered in thick lush jungle and populated with what we would term dinosaurs, although the beasts there have a much greater diversity in size. The poles of the world are covered in frozen tundra, and there's very little life there apart from giant burrowing snakes. Likewise, the oceans are teeming with fish life, some of which are larger than whales.

Really, the defining characteristic of Takta Ker's environment is "extremism". The mountains are huge, the chasms impossibly deep, the creatures gigantic and deadly, the jungles impenetrable.

And...that's about it in terms of the world. Since the edeinos won't advance technologically (or socially, really), there's no cities, no buildings, no real culture to speak of, no locations to discuss. There's just the hunt.

Oh, and the maelstrom bridges; we shouldn't forget those. Kaah has four active bridges (which are basically giant vines the thickness of a skyscraper): three to Core Earth that connect to New York City, Sacramento, and Fort Providence. The fourth actually connects to the Aysle cosm, but we're not told why Kaah built it and it's pretty much forgotten immediately so let's just move on.

As was discussed last post, the history of Takta Ker and the edeinos is not complicated. Thousands of years ago, the edeinos wiped out the only other intelligent race in the world, and since then have lived alone in the jungles. Even a genocidal war had very little effect on their tribal culture beyond causing the various tribes to stop warring all the time. Really, the wars were more to feel the rush of battle than anything else.

Things stayed this way for centuries; because the edeinos live very much "in the moment", they saw no reason to think about the long-term development of their race.

Then one day, a young edeinos warrior named Baruk Kaah saw a falling star while staring at the stars in prayer to Lanala.

Kaah went to investigate, and discovered a large red-hot hollow rock inside a fresh crater. And he knew the rock was hollow, because something inside was calling to him to break through the rock and free it.

quote:

At dawn he succeeded, and the contents of the rock spilled out: a single, giant seed. It was as black as night and as smooth and reflective as a calm pond. It was as big as his fist, and it sang to him of power and glory. Thinking the seed was a gift from Lanala, the young edeinos took it off to an area far from his tribe and planted it. It immediately took root and began to grow. In only a week's time it was as large as a tree, and in his pride Baruk Kaah brought others to see what Lanala had given him.
Unfortunately, the other edeinos didn't see this strange tree as a gift. It looked as if it was made of stone, but it was growing before their eyes. It looked alive, but at the same time it looked dead.

It only took a few weeks before the roots of the tree began to spread out and take root, causing more stone trees to sprout. It was clear that this abomination would keep spreading, forming a vast dead forest like a scar across the world. Those tribe members who objected "vanished" during the hunts. When the rest of the tribe learned that Kaah was not only behind the deaths, he was taking the bodies and putting the corpses into strange sacks woven from the vines of the stone trees.

This was a crime worse than the murders; all edeinos know that is natural (and therefore right) that corpses quickly decompose in the Mists so that they may feed the land. The tribe turned against Kaah for breaking the cycle of life.

Kaah revealed that the tree (now a copse of trees) had spoken to him, and taught him how to take the bodies of the fallen and infuse them with the power of the world. And since the power of the world is the power of Lanala, then obviously this was good! A gift from the goddess herself!

Not all the edeinos saw it that way, of course, but Kaah had been able to amass a large amount of followers by promising them power and new experiences. Those opposed to Kaah, who saw all this as a perversion of Lanala's gifts, tried to fight Kaah. By this point, though, Kaah had fully bonded with his Darkness Device and was unstoppable. The "traitors" were killed, and their bodies also used in these strange sacks, which Rec Pakken called "stelae". The Darkness Device told Kaah that by planting them in specific locations, he could extend Rec Pakken's power outward, keeping Kaah immortal even when not near the copse.

Kaah quickly began expanding his territory, and within a few decades had complete control over his whole world and every tribe therein. And once he was their true leader, their "Saar", he created his first maelstrom bridge to another world. Driven by promises of sensations never before experienced, his warriors flooded down the bridge to a new cosm; the homeworld of a species of flying starfish known as stalengers. The stalengers saw the light of Lanala, and Kaah's army only grew.


A stalenger. And yes, they're a playable race.

Since then, the Living Land has spread across the cosmverse like a virus. Dozens of worlds have been conquered, and new species and beasts roam the ever-expanding jungle of the Living Land.

Kaah was eventually approached by the Gaunt Man to participate in the invasion of Earth. By this point, Kaah had learned of the legend of the Torg, and was rather annoyed by this weird being that wanted to claim the title for himself. Still, new conquests were new conquests, and Kaah agreed to join the other Possibility Raiders. For now.


Majestic, aren't they?

Now, the next chapter is about the Keta Kalles religion, then from there the next chapter is about the invasion, then the chapter after that is the one about the realm itself. Even by Torg standards, the book isn't organized very well. To be fair, it was the first cosm book to be published. But since we're doing everything in order (and because it's useful to know this stuff for later), we're now going to learn about The Keta Kalles Religion.


Look, it was a different time, okay?

quote:

Lanala was very much alive. Her skin, as pale as the moon above, was pulled taut over the entire length of all the worlds. Her eyes were as big as the suns, her finger tips caressed the night sky.

But there was nothing for Lanala to feel, for Lanala was all there was. There was no light. Thert was no world. There were no trees or water, smells or flesh. There was no blood. There was only Lanala, and she wanted something she could experience. She longed for food to taste, for colors to see. She desired textures to touch, scents to smell, and sounds to hear.

So Lanala decided to create so that she might have sensations. First she made the stars, and scattered them through the cold black of night so she might marvel at their beauty. Then one night, she decided that t~ stars should have worlds to warm, as they already had heat. In this way, they would know what it was to use themselves to give pleasure. So Lanala made the worlds.

She was pleased with her work, but quickly saw that some of the worlds were getting too hot. She created oceans so that the worlds might cool down. She cupped the water from the oceans in her hands and poured it over her head, shivering from head to toe at the wonderful coldness. But it occurred to her that the water did not have the opportunity to give anything, as she gave the stars energy and the stars gave the world heat and the world gava the water a place to be. So she made plants to draw on the water for growth, and the water could give sensation as well.

Lanala had just completed creating the plants when they began crying out, one after another, over and over again, "We're good to eat! Taste us! Taste us!" Lanala did and discovered the plants were indeed uery pleasing to eat. She had grown weaker, though, from making all that she had made, and could not taste the plants fast enough. So she made the animals to help her taste the plants of all the worlds.

Soon, though, the animals were dying from old age, while the plants were born again and again each season. The animals begged to be allowed to live forever as the stars and worlds and oceans did, but Lanala did not have enough strength to do this. Instead, she said to the animals, "I enough power to let you create yourselves anew through your own passion." And
the animals, with no further prompting nmIed from Lanala, began making more of themselves.

When Lanala was done though, she realized that she had used up so much of her power that her senses were dead. She could no longer see the stars, or feel their warmth. She could not touch the soil, or smell the ocean breeze. Her grief was unbearable. It was impossible for her to be among the universe yet be unable to experience it.

She decided to transform herself from the one strong god she was, into many weaker mortals who would experience the universe for her. The mortals became her eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and fingers. In return for life, the mortals were required to experience everything, as fully as possible, for Lanala.
The religion of Keta Kalles is, as befits its tenets, very straightforward.

The priests (or Jakatts, which translates directly as "lovers") preach that the central concept of the religion is that the more intensely you experience the physical aspects of life through your senses, the more Lanala feels; and the more Lanala feels of her creations the more she will reward you.

The key word there is "intensely". It's not enough to just watch a sunset or swim through a raging river; you have to fully indulge in the experience. In a manner of speaking, this is how the followers of Lanala pray to her.

What's more, the reason for the sensation is irrelevant. If an edeinos is in battle, it doesn't matter to him if he's overcome with the thrill of battle or is terrified for his life. Both situations are just as effective as praise to Lanala.

Asking for a gift from Lanala (a.k.a., performing a miracle) requires the offering of an intense sensation. When not in battle, this can take the form of an artstic effort. Dancing is common, as is weaving art from living plants. So is sacrifice. To the Jakatts, pain and pleasure are just different sides of the same coin.

When the need is a bit more immediate, such as a miracle needed in battle, then self-mutilation is usually used due to the simplicity and intensity of the action. Many edeinos have a permanent wound, which they call a yunti ("passion") that they can use to feel pain when they need Lanala's blessings. Most tribes will cut their young during puberty, usually under a flap of skin on the stomach, and the wound is never allowed to fully heal.

An except from an interview with a Jakatt

quote:

Lanala has taught us how to feel everything. To look at this...(indicates the table before him and he is told its name)...table is fascinating, though you pass your eyes over it without seeing it. You do not see. Do you understand? You have eyes, but you have torn the Sight from them. But this table is dull compared to what lives. You have smothered its surface, cut its sides clean, removed all of its roughness. It is easy to look at, easy to touch. This is how you die. You make things easy, you get lazy. The tree you killed to make this was more interesting by far than this thing you made with it. Harder to take in, but much more interesting.

Needless to say, Keta Kalles is a very informal religion, especially from a human standpoint. There's no formal structure to the clergy; anyone who is dedicated enough to Lanala can perform miracles with no special training. Anyone who can perform miracles is referred to as a Jakatt, and those who dedicate their lives to their faith are called ophants, and tend to be leaders in their tribes.

There is a very new special "branch" (for lack of a better term) of priests known as gotaks: "they who must suffer no passion". That's a bit of a misnomer, because the gotaks are still expected to feel sensations for Lanala as much as everyone else. Their role in edeinos society is to deal with dead tools. Such as the stone knives used to sacrifice beings for Rek Pakken; no other edeinos would ever touch such a thing. They're also responsible for the preparation of corpses to create stelae, and to manage the gospog fields. The gotaks are a relatively recent addition to the religion by Baruk Kaah, because he needed people to handle the physical gifts the Darkness Device. It's worth noting that the gotaks are not considered heretical or wrong, nor are they shunned in edeinos society; in fact they're pitied. Well, and feared a bit as well, since they understand the workings of Rek Pakken.

One very interesting thing to point out is that Keta Kalles, and by extension the edeinos themselves, have no concept of the soul. They just feel that you're you, and that's all there is to it. Because of this, there's no real concept of an afterlife (when you die, you feed the plants and that's it), nor is there a concept of "damnation" or divine punishment. This means that there's really no taboos in Keta Kalles apart from maybe deliberately avoiding an intense sensation. Keta Kalles is all about living in the moment, after all.

Likewise, there's no real drive to live a "good" life, at least in the way we'd think of it. For a Jakatt, everything is good except for the loss of life, and even then it's not something that's really considered bad. A Jakatt's job is to live life to its fullest, but at the same time they know doing so brings them closer to death.


Keta Kalles has had a lot of converts lately.

Throughout the chapter are excerpts from interviews with edeinos conducted by Core Earth researchers. It's a nice touch, really, and actually do a really good job of explaining the edeinos mindset.

quote:

Everyone else in the tribe is equal. We all do what must be done, some days doing one thing, other days doing another thing. We are not lazy like you, and ...

What do you mean lazy?

I often hear your people say, "I want to get out of here," or "I can't stand doing this," when working. When I ask what one of these people will do when they "get out of here," they answer that they will sit around and drink or turn on your televisions and sit around some more. You all sit around. You sit around at work and go away to sit around some more. We enjoy our work, because we know we must work to live.

What about when your people, and by that I mean all Jakatts, walch a tree? Isn't that sitting?

When you run you do not strain yourself as much as when I watch a tree. I look for everything. I am looking at a tree to find my goddess.

quote:

What was a day for your tribe like?

We would rise early. Some would go hunting for animals to use as food or as mounts, some would stay with the children. Others would prepare living plant sculptures for the rituals forthat night. When word came for us to fight, we would gather our weapons and travel as we were commanded.

Hunting was a day long activity. We traveled in groups of about five, armed with our spears. We would track prey and then attempt to touch the animal before killing it.

Could you explain that?

It is a chance to feel fear and excitement. We attempt to get close enough to the animal to touch, while it is awake, before we cast our first spear. After the first hunter touched the animal we could kill it. Sometimes a hunter wanted to touch an animal although someone had already touched it, and this was always allowed.

We also had to touch the animal when attempting to acquire them for a mount. This was easier because the animal could be asleep, although walking up to the animal without waking it is no easy task.

Staying with the children meant two tasks-playing with them and watching after them, for they are young and do not know the ways of survival yet. Also, those with the children must guard the campsite from hungry creatures.

The games usually involved much running and hitting. Acommon game is upk. The children and adults are divided into two teams and each player is given a hrockt shoot. At the center of the camp is a skull of an enemy wrapped in mummified skin (the "ball" is, of course, prepared by the tribe's gotak). The first team to carry the ball outside of the camp area wins.

What are the rules?

Rules?

How do you play?

I just told you.

--

The stuff just in these two chapters just makes me sad at how the Living Land was cast aside by everyone. There's some really cool stuff here! The book does a great job explaining not just the religion of the edeinos, but also taking into account how Kaah had to twist Keta Kalles to his own ends so he could "validate" the use of his Darkness Device.

I feel like if they'd just taken things a few steps further, or at least kept revisiting these ideas, the Living Land would have been more popular.

NEXT TIME: Survival of the fittest

Evil Mastermind fucked around with this message at 22:10 on Feb 6, 2017

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.


Grimey Drawer
"So High King Dickswinger and Dark Lord Hairypalms started to fight in the throne room, and the party tried to join in!"

I can't remember the actual names, but boy howdy was that GM welded to his lovely JRPG tropes and engineer's hat.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008

EverettLO posted:

This is probably a much better answer than getting in the fight at all. The problem with auto-lose battles is that if the players don't know it's an auto-lose battle they'll get creative and get themselves killed.
Either that, or they wind up wasting a ton of their resources trying to survive.

SirPhoebos
Dec 10, 2007

WELL THAT JUST HAPPENED!

Wait, if Keta Kalles have no concept of the soul, and therefore there are no taboos...why is there a taboo against "dead things"? I feel like I am missing something.

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008

SirPhoebos posted:

Wait, if Keta Kalles have no concept of the soul, and therefore there are no taboos...why is there a taboo against "dead things"? I feel like I am missing something.

Remember, the whole point of Keta Kalles is to experience sensations for Lanala. Every sensation by every living thing is felt and experienced by her. Even by unintelligent beasts. Even the edenios' preferred weapon is a type of small tree that can be uprooted, used to fight, then harmlessly replanted again.

Things that are dead cannot feel sensations, and therefore go against the basic idea of Keta Kalles. By using something dead over something alive, you're willingly denying Lanala sensations.

Count Chocula
Dec 25, 2011

WE HAVE TO CONTROL OUR ENVIRONMENT
IF YOU SEE ME POSTING OUTSIDE OF THE AUSPOL THREAD PLEASE TELL ME THAT I'M MISSED AND TO START POSTING AGAIN

JackMann posted:

Fun thing. My buddy didn't know you were supposed to lose the fight at the beginning of the first Legacy of Cain game. He kept restarting his Playstation trying to figure out how to beat it for like an hour.

I love how Dark Souls lets you beat the unbeatable bosses in NG+, or even if the first time if you're really good.

I loved that Legacy of Cain opening. It's a VtM prelude, letting you play through being Turned.

Speaking of Vampire, I just read a pretty bad comic that would make a great campaign. It's called Bite Club by Howard Chaykin. It's Scarface with vampires, about a vampire crime family in Miami. It'd make an awesome sourcebook or something.

I guess that's kinda the Giovanni though.

The Lone Badger
Sep 24, 2007

If i cram enough AI into my battlesuit can I make it count as a person not an object?

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008

Serf posted:

[b][u]Shadow of the Demon Lord

Qeegol should start as a Rogue, then go Warlock so she can bargain with demons for more wealth.

Spradley is totally an Artificer.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Rand Brittain posted:

So, as anybody gotten the new Conquering Heroes book for Beast?

You take that out of here and back to the World of Darkness thread. :(

EverettLO posted:

Legend of the Five Rings 1e: Night of a Thousand Screams



Yeah, this thing is a real mess, the only time I got to experience it we only got in several in-game hours before being too injured to conceivably go on with the adventure and just giving up on trying to finish it. There are a few early adventures like this and Twilight Honor that don't recognize that A) there is only one healing spell in the game at this point, B) you'll be lucky if you have a single caster who can do it more than two or three times, and C) wound penalties are a terrible downward spiral. Often the only way to get through them is abject cowardice, mind-mangling luck, or an angel GM saving you whenever possible. "The oni misses you guys a sixth time in a row! What are the odds...?"

Crasical
Apr 22, 2014

GG!*
*GET GOOD

Kurieg posted:

In case there was any question: yes I will be F&Fing this piece of poo poo.

:colbert:

Crasical posted:

Enjoy your break while you can [Because Conquering Heroes is slated to come out sometime in the Fall 2016 bracket]

Kurieg posted:

An antagonists book is likely to be an incredibly dry read(and review) and isn't likely to make the sweeping changes and/or generalizations that the Dark Eras book or Storyteller's guide will.


You lied to me, Kurieg.

Crasical fucked around with this message at 13:27 on Jan 13, 2017

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso

Strange Matter posted:

It's kind of nice how the whole time through Godlike the timeline is being fairly ginger with Talent influence over real events, mostly relegating them to side missions with minimal relevance to actual events, and then Omaha Beach happens and it's total craziness. Especially the image of whole chunks of the beach being teleported into the ocean.
I left out the bit about the giant boa constrictor.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015

The Lone Badger posted:

If i cram enough AI into my battlesuit can I make it count as a person not an object?

Depends on how strong the Shinto Axiom is in the Living Lands.

EverettLO
Jul 2, 2007
I'm a lurker no more


Legend of the Five Rings 1e: Night of a Thousand Screams Part 2



Something I forgot to note last update, but that plays an important part of this adventure: it takes place on the night of the Bon Festival. The Bon Festival is an important holiday for giving honor and remembrance to the dead. It’s celebrated by going out at night dressed in masks and costumes and reveling with drink and fireworks. I’m picturing a sort of Japanese flavored Day of the Dead celebration with Noh masks in place of skull masks.

We begin the part of the writeup with the chase. Don’t get too excited – it’s actually going to be one of the more boring updates. Your PCs chase a number of bandits as they scatter in different directions, one PC per bandit. The stated design goal is to allow each PC a moment to shine and let them get to tell the story to the other PCs when they regroup (presumably emphasizing how awesome they are in the process). In theory it’s a neat roleplaying experience, but in practice putting everything on hold while you run five mini-sessions for one player at a time will probably bore people.

The first bandit runs through the underclass village and takes a young boy hostage. Your PC has a couple of different ways to handle this before the bandit decides to stop threatening the child and attack the PC. It barely matters, though, because this bandit doesn’t know anything.



The second bandit runs into an underclass geisha house, because of course he does. As he flees he pushes a woman down the stairs behind him. If the player takes time to make sure she’s okay, then the bandit likely gets away. If they coldly charge on by then they corner the bandit and kill him. This bandit has a trade manifest from a Scorpion merchant with nothing but fairly prosaic items such as wicker baskets and masks for an upcoming festival.

The third bandit is a hell of a runner and you have to take some stamina rolls just to keep up with him. He runs through the heart of the village and knocks everything in the way of your PC to slow them down. If the PC manages to catch this bandit and keep him alive, then he will spill his gets for the promise to be set free. If so, he tells that they were paid to steal the Crane’s swords because apparently one of them was magical.

The fourth bandit runs and hides in the fishery. He tries to ambush the pursuing PC but will almost certainly just get himself killed in the process. He has no clues.

The last bandit conveniently runs back toward the Inn of the Orange Blossom. When the PC catches him he turns around, whips out a katana and begins making threats with an insane gleam in his eye. He mentions that even with his death, this night will end with the city drowned in a thousand screams. When the PC takes him down they’ll probably notice that his clothes are much nicer than the other bandits and that he has another pouch with five koku and a Crab clan mon.

7:00 PM

The players, and their NPC minder Oruko, regroup at the Inn and tell their story. Oruko killed his bandit and has nothing much to add to the players’ stories. If the player relays the information about the potentially magical sword then Oruko can explain that one of the murdered Crane samurai was a famed Daidoji warrior who spent time on the Crab border and claimed his sword was found near the Shadowlands. Which is, uhhhhh, a terrible story for a samurai to spread around but whatever. Oruko also explains that the bandits’ mission was folly since the dead Crane’s weapons would be in the hands of the Crane consulate.

7:10 PM

Oruko leads the PCs to the manor of Doji Tsumetsu’s, the local Crane Clan daimyo, to see about this sword. It’s not very clear why the PCs would be going without finding the clue about the sword but I assume a clever GM could manufacture a reason for Oruko to lead them there.

It’s a beautiful mansion with an immaculately manicured garden, as befits a Crane lord. As the PCs approach they notice that they’re all getting tired. When they get to the door Oruko calls out a greeting but nobody answers. As they enter they find the guards on the floor unconscious. Every round they’re in the mansion they need to pass a TN 25 Willpower roll to avoid falling asleep. This seems like the authors not understanding the system since that puts an average PC to sleep between 85% and 95% of the time each round, but in this instance they just want you to fall asleep. It’s more railroading and slightly more inconvenient than straight up telling your PCs that they fell asleep. Assuming by dumb luck a PC manages to stay awake for another turn or two, they’ll see a mostly naked man covered in tattoos running upstairs.

The PCs wake up a short while later and notice a handful of the mini-oni ransacking the upstairs of the house. They’re tearing everything apart and clearly looking for…something. The PCs may get a chance to save a room full of civilians from the mini-oni before running into the main Oni no Chizaro down the hall in the master bedroom. It’s tearing into a chest full of porcelain masks when a minor oni rushes in carrying a wakizashi from a fallen guard. The main oni licks the sword, roars angrily and breaks it in two. Rather than fighting the PCs it leaps away and leaves a handful of minor oni to stall the party. At face value it’s a fair fight, but with the likelihood of getting the taint through damage rolls, it’s actually a brutal fight that could potentially kill off a PC or two in the long run.



The main oni gets away in great leaps a la the Hulk. If the PCs look out the window to track it, they notice a man in the garden also watching the oni bound away. It looks like the tattooed guy a PC had a very, very slim chance of noticing! Even if they try to catch him he gets away because now the authors remember that they don’t need to roll for it if they want something to happen.

7:45 PM

The residents of the Crane manor wake up and take their bearings. The Crane daimyo is particularly grateful to the PCs for risking their lives to protect the unconscious Crane samurai and civilians and gives the players a handful of minor one-shot magical items. Their haul includes a key that can magically open one locked door, a fan that temporarily makes the user a master of social graces, a fruit that cures poison, and sun figurine made of jade that can create a globe of sunlight. The daimyo tells you that the figuring can restore a lost soul to Amaterasu’s grace. That’s…suspiciously specific.

While the Crane begin to rebuild and tend to the injured, the father of the daimyo’s hatamoto (basically the daimyo’s consigliere) takes you aside and presses one of the PCs to play a game of Go with him. Presumably they’re too polite to refuse. While the old man plays with one of the players, the hatamoto explains why he wasn’t around to protect his lord: he was out investigating an attack on a Unicorn Clan warehouse that was assaulted by bandits and cost a Unicorn merchant a whole lot of party favors. Masks for the Bon Festival are part of that loss and by now the players should realize that masks are part of what the shadowy demon conspiracy are searching for.

The player playing Go with the old man can succeed at a reasonable Courtier skill roll or an unreasonably high Awareness roll to figure out the old man sees the mysterious tattooed man as a friend. The old man also shows the players that he found a broken hourglass outside the house that was likely part of a one-shot magical item to put the house to sleep. He seems to think that the tattooed man put the house to sleep and did it for a good reason.

Next time: off to the Unicorn Warehouse for more investigations, then to a different warehouse for an incredibly deadly combat encounter.

Asehujiko
Apr 6, 2011

Polaris RPG(2016)
Part 6, Book 1, Chapter 1: The World of the Deep, section 1.2: Civilizations of the Deep


We're finally done with the Hegemony, who occupied fully 1/5th of the entire nation information section and a little more than 1/10th of all fluff in the book. Next we'll be looking at the the Britain to the Hegemony's Napoleonic France and a hell of a lot more relatable without having to delve into obscure rebel groups.

The Red League

Another contender for the "way too much crap going on in the background" competition. Note the near-invisible lines that all the small stars are connected to.

History
The League was formed in 302 by Paul Devraverit from the Falkland community in response to the expansionist Hatteras station starting a war of conquest against their neighbours. To counter the overwhelming firepower of the Hatteras ships, the League formed a doctrine of stealth, ambushes and boarding actions, together with technological innovation, inventing the Tarantula, Manta and Sleeper type ships. The League could not prevent Hatteras from occupying many of the northern settlements but with each one they took, their supply lines became more and more vulnerable to League guerillas until 339, when the Hatteras could make no more advances without losing territory behind their lines and a treaty was signed. Devraverit had died during the war with no successor so in 340 a great council with ambassadors from all the League's member states was held in Nazca, the station that would later become the League's capital. The ambassadors agreed to merge their stations into one larger nation, changing the Red League from an alliance to a single state and war hero Bjorn Urik was chosen as it's leader, the First Citizen.

Urik embarked on a great project of economic modernisation, turning the newly minted nation into the richest one in the world. With this new wealth, the navy was refit to be able to fight enemy forces head on instead of being confined to hit & run actions. Though not quite able to match Hatteras, the new fleet turned the Red League into one of the stronger underwater powers. Two major problems remained though, a food supply and decreasing birth rate. Food was eventually solved by allying with the Coral Republic but the League's population has never stopped shrinking. Urik tried to remedy the latter by devoting large amounts of resources to genetic research and privileges for large families, as well as ordering all fertile citizen in the armed forces to be transferred to non-combatant roles. Urik retired in 360, transferring the League's leadership to his son Groendald Urik on the same day that the Hegemony discovered the first Genetician depot. Rumours spread that the depot held the secret to reverse infertility and after convening with the leaders of hundreds of independent settlements and minor states, Groendald declared war on the Hegemony. The first year of the war yielded great results but then the Hegemony's hyperalloy ships started appearing on the front lines and the situation was reversed. The Hegemony stormed the League capital of Nazca in 370, first capturing and enslaving all fertile citizen there and then destroying it completely. Hegemonic commandos also tracked down and killed or captured all members of Groendald's family.

After the great defeat, the Red League was forced to sue for peace but Groendald and the fleet reverted to guerilla tactics and secretly continued to support the many enemies of the Hegemony against the conquerors. Settlements about to fall were instructed to comply with the invaders demand to prevent the destruction of their industrial resources. In 373, the Coral Republic joined the war and helped push the Hegemony out of the League's territory, which resulted in the League capturing many hyperalloy and Techno-Hybrid producing facilities built in the occupied stations. In 375, a rift formed between Groendald and Piotr Devrac of the Coral Republic, with Groendald wanting to push onwards and destroy the evil that was the Hegemony and Devrac preferring to negotiate on the neutral grounds of Equinox. Groendald, who had fallen into depression and paranoia following the murder of his family, saw this as a betrayal and a plan for the Coral Republic to take over both warring nations. Against the recommendation of his entire staff, he secretly contacted the High Admiral of the Hegemony for a truce and an alliance against the Cult of the Trident. After the destruction of both the Hegemony and the Red League's fleet at Equinox, Groendald declared war on the Coral Republic but was quickly overthrown by his staff, who sued for peace and attended the Admiral's Council.

In the century of peace that followed, the Red League once again became the strongest economic power beneath the waves and in 468, a new agreement was signed with the Hegemony, allowing for the return of Aaron Urik, Groendald's great-grandson, born as a prisoner from the descendants of the Urik family members captured in the attack on Nazca. Aaron became the next First Citizen in 474 and pursued a policy of ending the cold war that still persisted between the League and the Hegemony. The greatest problem facing the league now is still infertility, it's population shrinkage accelerated by the casualties in the past wars and the kidnapping of fertile individuals by the Hegemony. Unwilling to implement the inhumane reproduction policies of their rival, the Red League's numbers are still in decline. In 567 tensions flared up again with the Hegemony's invasion of Fuego Liberdad, with the League's intelligence services believing that they would be the next target. A plan for an overland strike was prepared titled Operation Minos but the Hegemony backed down after raiding a Genetician vault in Fuego Liberdad and made no more offensive moves against the League. Still, the current First Citizen, Aaron's son Khan Urik, no longer believes in peace and is preparing for a war against the Hegemony.

The book can't keep it's backstory straight, now the Coral Republic isn't a neutral third party in the second large Hegemony - Red League war but an active participant. Spoiler: This won't be the last time that happens. That said, let's continue with the Red League.

Society
The League numbers 22 million souls, although that number is dropping, with too few fertile citizen remaining to keep the birth rate up. The few that remain are cherished and given special privileges, with births being reasons for great celebration, though they are forbidden from serving in the army or any other hazardous occupations. The parliament devotes massive amounts of resources to finding a cure for the infertility and there are also rumours that the League contracts pirates to kidnap fertile people from elsewhere. League citizen enjoy more freedom than those of most other nations and the largest religion is the Cult of the Trident. Fringe opposition groups call for a more stringent reproductive policy, citing the Hegemony as an example but the Parliament has spent the last 150 years telling them to gently caress off and move to Bermuda already if they like slavery and rape that much. The League is the richest state on earth at the moment due to it's large mineral reserves of Cylast and tri-terranium, massive commercial fleets and the largest amount of surface installations of any nation, though the latter are outclassed by the Hegemony's less numerous but individually larger ones.

The League is ruled by the Parliament of the League, consisting of one representative from each constituent station and it's spokesman, the First Citizen, Khan Urik. Urik is also the commander in chief of the League's armies. In times of war, full power is granted to the First Citizen. The Coordinator is in charge of national security, who leads the intelligence, counter-espionage and civil security forces, named the Red Guards. The Maigar leads all the League's research efforts and the Great Procurator manages the legal services and the wheeling and dealing of the commercial sector. The league's social structure is divided roughly by wealth, with the directors of the largest companies at the top, followed by senior managers and executives. Next is the large and comfortable middle class, which is made up out of the armed forces and the low ranking employees of the League's great commercial sector. A small underclass exists as it does anywhere else but the Great Procurator makes sure there's always somebody hiring. Mercenaries and fertile citizen are outside the hierarchy but are treated with respect, as they secure the League's borders and it's future respectively.

Next: Red League territory, armed forces, characters and stations.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

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

Crasical posted:

You lied to me, Kurieg.

Because by all accounts it should have been a dry piece of poo poo, I desperately wanted this book to be uninspired and boring. Unfortunately they somehow managed to produce a book that's somehow worse than Beast Core. They introduced a completely new type of antagonist that is completely idiotic to the point of self parody and introduced several new Heroes and Beasts that aren't just narratively ill-advised but also break the rules of the game as stated. And of course there's all sorts of shallow-as-a-puddle digs at groups that BHM personally dislikes.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015

Kurieg posted:

Because by all accounts it should have been a dry piece of poo poo, I desperately wanted this book to be uninspired and boring. Unfortunately they somehow managed to produce a book that's somehow worse than Beast Core. They introduced a completely new type of antagonist that is completely idiotic to the point of self parody and introduced several new Heroes and Beasts that aren't just narratively ill-advised but also break the rules of the game as stated. And of course there's all sorts of shallow-as-a-puddle digs at groups that BHM personally dislikes.

Beasts are too edgy to follow rules. Rules are oppression.

Doresh fucked around with this message at 17:06 on Jan 15, 2017

Serf
May 5, 2011


Shadow of the Demon Lord Part 9: Spradley and Queegol level up!

Spradley has changed a little bit since we last saw them. They found an old sage who helped them understand the writing on the inside of their arm, which turned out to be an incantation for an ancient form of magic, one that could imbue Spradley’s weapon with arcane power. The discovery awakened a latent power in Spradley, one that seemed to have almost been waiting for this particular moment. Reciting the incantation filled Spradley with power, giving them the ability to use magic.

But that is not all there is to the writing. The incantation is just one portion of the message, which appears to have been left by Spradley’s creator. Filled with determination, Spradley decides to seek out their maker and discover why this power was sealed within them, and why the cryptic message implores them to seek out the reclusive engineer.

At level 2, Spradley picks up the normal Warrior kit, including +5 Health, Combat Prowess and Forceful Strike.

At level 3, Spradley’s magical potential is unlocked, and they pick up the Spellbinder Expert Path. Spradley gets an Attribute increase, putting +1 into Strength and Intellect, +3 Health, and 1 point of Power. Spradley discovers the Battle tradition, which replaces their normal Madness with Battle Madness and gives them access to a variety of spells. When discovering a tradition, you learn one rank-0 cantrip, and Spradley chooses Celerity, which allows them to move up to twice their Speed without triggering free attacks. They also get Spellbound Weapon, the core spell of the Spellbinder Path. Since their Power is 1, they get 2 castings of each rank-0 spell, and 1 casting of any rank-1 spells, but they don’t know any yet!

Spradley makes all attacks with their battleaxe with 1 boon thanks to Weapon Training, and they deal an extra 1d6 damage because of Combat Prowess. If they roll over a 20, they get another 1d6 damage on top of that with Forceful Strike. By casting Spellbound Weapon, which has a 4-hour duration, they get another boon to all attacks, the ability to teleport the weapon to their hand, and they can repair all damage to it. So assuming they’re rolling with Spellbound Weapon up, they roll attacks with 2 boons and deal at least 2d6 + 2 damage, with the possibility of doing another 1d6 on that, which becomes more likely due to rolling with 2 boons. They can sacrifice that capability to use special maneuvers to better control the battlefield, and give themself better odds by canceling out the boons with banes.

With a suit of scale armor, Spradley has a Defense of 16, with a +2 from their large shield, making them pretty hard to hit, and with 26 and a Healing Rate of 6, Spradley is beefy for a hybrid type character. They can hold their own on the front line of a fight, and will be able to acquire even more spellcasting capability later, focusing on the Battle tradition.

Spradley Sprocket, Level 3 Warrior/Spellbinder
Strength 13, Agility 8, Intellect 12, Will 8
Perception 9
Defense 18
Health 26
Healing Rate 6
Size 1, Speed 8, Power 1
Damage 0, Insanity 0, Corruption 0
Languages: Common (Literate)
Professions: Folklore, Religion, Mercenary
Immune to disease, poison, asleep and fatigued
Key
Mechanical Body
Repairing Damage
Catch Your Breath: use an action to heal Damage equal to Healing Rate 1/per rest.
Weapon Training: when attacking w/ weapon, take 1 boon.
Combat Prowess: weapon attacks deal 1d6 extra damage.
Forceful Strike: on attack roll of 20+, deal 1d6 extra damage
Spells: Spellbound Weapon (2), Celerity (2)
Gear: Battleaxe, large shield, basic clothing, backpack, 1 week of rations, waterskin, tinderbox, 2 torches and a pouch with 2 copper pennies.




Our old friend Queegol has undergone a life change since we last saw her. She’s fallen into a life of adventure and roguery after encountering a cult devoted the Demon Lord. Realizing that mere words will not be enough to help people, she has bent her wealth and skill towards that noble goal, and discovered skills that she didn’t even know she had. Knowing that she’ll never make a great fighter, and lacking faith in the gods, she’s turned to the crafty sorts her work brought her into contact with in order to develop her talents. She’s made friends with thieves and assassins and rogue mages of all stripes, learning how they ply their craft and incorporating their lessons into her own repertoire.

Now she works against the Demon Lord’s cultists from both sides of the law, pursuing them with words and reason where she can, but stalking them with blade and pistol in the night.

Queegol has taken up the Path of the Rogue, learning their particular mixture of luck and talent, and she has chosen to augment her capabilities with magic as well. As a level 1 Rogue, she gets to increase two Attributes by 1, and she chooses Agility and Intellect, focusing on her strengths. She gets +3 Health and chooses to learn High Archaic as a result of her conversations with magicians. She then gets Nimble Recovery, giving her a boost of healing and some mobility in fights, and Trickery, granting 1 boon on a single attack or challenge roll per round.

At level 2, Queegol gets Health +3, Exploit Opportunity, which gives her an extra turn when rolling over a 20, and a Roguery Talent. She chooses Magic, which increases her Power by 1, and lets her discover the Enchantment tradition and the spells Bewitch and Question. Bewitch lets her keep enemies off her back in combat and Question allows her to extract information from unwilling sources.

Queegol the Fang, Level 2 Rogue
Strength 8, Agility 13, Intellect 12, Will 8
Perception 11
Defense 14
Health 14
Healing Rate 2
Size ½, Speed 10, Power 1
Damage 0, Insanity 0, Corruption 0
Languages: Common (literate), Elvish and High Archaic
Professions: merchant, law
Immune to disease and charmed
Iron Vulnerability
Shadowsight
Sneaky
Nimble Recovery: spend an action to heal damage equal to Healing Rate and move up to half speed without triggering free attacks. 1/rest.
Trickery: one per round, make an attack or challenge roll w/ 1 boon. If using for an attack, the attack deals 1d6 extra damage.
Exploit Opportunity: if attack roll is above 20, take another turn before end of round. 1/round.
Roguery Talent: Magic (increase Power by 1 and make two choices: discover a tradition or learn a spell w/ each)
Spells: Bewitch (2), Question (1)
Equipment: rapier, pistol, soft leather armor, noble’s clothing, cloak, 1 week of rations, a waterskin, a healing potion, a pouch containing 11 silver shillings, a personal servant, a guard and a three horses with saddles.

Now that we’ve also covered the Expert Paths, :siren: what would you like to see Queegol take up for her next Path? :siren:

Serf fucked around with this message at 22:26 on Jan 15, 2017

wdarkk
Oct 26, 2007

Friends: Protected
World: Saved
Crablettes: Eaten
Oh wow Goblin Rogue Daredevil.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Green Intern
Dec 29, 2008

Loon, Crazy and Laughable

So I admit to skimming over the first few Polaris posts. Is infertility really a widespread crisis in-setting? Any hooks as to what is causing it?

Also reading the word Fertile so many times in a row feels uncomfortable.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5