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Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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The Syrne exist as a setting mystery, but arenít aliens unless you want.

The Bargainers, uh, might still be a Vodacce thing? Itís not totally clear to me.

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Carados
Jan 28, 2009

We're a couple, when our bodies double.

Xiahou Dun posted:



Anyway, this has been me just having some fun with the implied math of a silly fantasy setting for funsies.

Thanks again, Mors! Loving the write up!
They're modrons.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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

The Lone Badger posted:

The Vodacce post talks about Syrneth artifacts and the Bargainers
I thought those were gone?

Maybe they forgot to remove some copy-pasting because of just how little Voddace seems to have changed?

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!
Well, it refers to "the original men who bargained for the power" which could mean the bargainers or something different. There are clearly multiple-forms of entity that can be bargained with, like the sidhe, dievai, or others much later, but it's not necessarily the same thing as far as I can tell. The Ussurans have a "bargain with Matushka", after all.

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool

Toilet Rascal


Damage and Non-Combat subsystems
Now that weíre through the core system, we start to move onto how Damage works, and then head through a variety of esoteric effects and minor systems before we reach Combat. Runequest is most famous for using Hit Locations, so limbs and specific body parts can be damaged with specific effects as well as reducing your total pool of HP. The effect of limb damage tends to be ĎYouíre hosedí. Losing all your legís HP means you canít move and take 50% from your attack skills, and if an arm is damaged you canít use it anymore. Anything else takes your character out of the fight. If you take double or triple the locationís current HP in damage, youíre effectively out of combat and will probably die if you arenít healed. Since your hit points tend to be low with an average of around 5 per limb, itís very easy to get hosed up by a single hit from a broadsword. Make sure youíve got armor.

To ameliorate this, healing is accessible for most characters. A lot of Cults will have some access to healing magic and can re-attach a severed limb if they have enough magic points. Thereís also a First Aid skill, which heals less and isnít practical for combat, but doesnít expend resources and can be taken by military professions that might not have healing magic. Thereís also Natural Healing that gives you back a fifth of your HP per week. This isnít so bad since thereís an assumed season between adventures, but even so. Thereís also Resurrection in the game: The cult of the healer god Chalana Arroy have access to a raise dead spell, although it only works on people whoíve been dead for less than 7 days and havenít fully passed onto the realm of the gods. For anyone past that, you must go on a Heroquest and get them out directly. Thereís an amusing note about how Healers never charge for their services, but your cult demands a mandatory donation equal to your ransom as a thank you, which is achievable for most adventurers.

Thereís also an encumbrance system, which could be worse. Instead of measuring based on actual weight, objects are measured by ďThingsĒ where 1 Thing is an object you could hold in 1 hand easily. For some reason your max encumbrance is the average of your Strength and Constitution, unless your Strength is lower for some reason. Runequest hates deriving things from a single stat, because it would be unrealistic for your Duck Hoplite to not factor in his hardiness and muscle mass. Going over your encumbrance reduces your movement and penalises a few skill categories. Thereís a few times where Encumbrance is going to matter: They give an example where one character has to carry an unconscious person out of danger, and thereís a Flight spell that bases itís cost on your ENC with a way for high-level Orlanthis to get around it. Everyone will keep ignoring it like they do with every game, but the simpler units are helpful if you do.
Thereís a few smaller subsystems and obstacles that are worth looking at briefly.

  • Chases: Use Ride, Drive Chariot or DEX opposed checks to get ahead, modified by differences between MOV scores. Thereís a set of different zones where youíre considered to have got away, possibly needing to find the opponent again or can only attack via range. Itís a standard setup but itís simple and effective
  • Darkness: skills get penalised if itís dark unless you have a way around it. There are very specific rules for how candles and lanterns work, including a random chart for dropping lanterns and starting fires. Darkness is an element in Glorantha so itíll pop up a lot but the lighting stuff is too complicated.
  • Diseases: Diseases come from evil spirits and chaos, and it can be a threat to your community as much as players, so having rules about it are more useful than most games. You test CON after getting exposed, and if you fail you keep testing CON until you succeed to see how severe it is. Then you keep testing CON at whatever rate the severity says and lose a stat point if you fail or get better if you succeed. Or you use magic. Some diseases just make you sneeze loudly.
  • Drowning: More CON checks of increasing difficulty until you fail, then you start rapidly taking damage to your chest. If itís a surprise you check POW to see if you instinctively held your breath, because POW needed some extra features.
  • Falling: d6 damage every 3 meters, a successful Jump roll reduces the roll by a d6 and lets you specify a hit location
  • Fire: Fire deals d6 damage per round to whatever hit locations are exposed. Thereís a lot of sanity checks and protection: a POW check after a parry or dodge protects you from igniting, and the GM decides whether the surface is actually flammable or not, although flesh skin are explicitly not.
  • Poison: Each poison gets a special stat called Potency that you test your CON against with a resistance roll, as well as determining damage to total hit points. Itís hard to heal against. Thereís a breakdown of different sorts of poisons and relative effectiveness of different antidotes that is a bit much.
  • Wind: Thereís a table of relative wind strengths. If your STR+SIZ is lower than the windís power, you check STR each round to stay on your feet. Strong enough winds also penalise ranged attacks and visibility. Since your players probably have Wind Magic, this is more useful to use than youíd think
  • Temperature: Weather thatís too cold or too hot damages your hit points. The hot weather threshold is listed at 40 degrees Celsius, which as an Australian doesnít seem to deserve a check of CONx3. A Praxian would probably agree.
  • Hunger and Thirst: Lose total HP if you donít eat or drink enough. Probably wonít matter ever.

These systems aren't bad. They aren't too complicated or different than the main rules. The problem with a lot of them is that they aren't conducive to "Maximum Game Fun": Some are overly lethal and have a little bit too much maths, and you're frequently going to subvert them with magic or ignore them. I probably wouldn't change the systems themselves since they work fairly well, they just butt up against issues with lethality and random stats and I'd rather fix those.


No it's cool, I'll roleplay the convo out

Next time: Combat, and a defense of Strike Ranks

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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7th Sea 2: Yo Ho Ho, A Pirate's Life For Me

While there are literally hundreds of pirate crews out there, there's five groups that pretty much everyone knows the name of. First, the Brotherhood of the Coast. See, the Castillians had hired a band of thugs, brigands and former pirates they called the Black Spot Fleet and set them to killing other pirates. The Brotherhood was formed when a bunch of their victims banded together under a charter of mutual protection, led by the legendary Captain Roberts, First King of the Pirates. They defeated the Black Spots for good, and declared that each Brotherhood ship was now a nation unto itself, with the captains elected by the crew as representatives of a free republic of piracy. Of course, the entire thing would've scattered were it not for Gentleman Gosse, the most civil and polite of all pirates. See, he was elected as the second King of Pirates after Roberts was slain by the Devil Jonah (read: Davey Jones). Gosse worked to build a solid foundation to keep them all together, then retired to make way for the Third (and current) King of Pirates, a woman known as Captain Bonaventura. Now, she has declared war on the entire world. She says that if the governments of Theah will not recognize the Brotherhood as a true nation, then they will continue to seize their ships, cargo and lives.

Second are the Buccaneers of La Bucca. La Bucca was a prison island far off the Castillian coast, and it's now a beacon of freedom and liberty. The prisoners faked a plague outbreak, using it to capture the island. The Castillians, Vodacce and Vesten all sent warships to seize the island, which ended in a four-way stalemate until the three warships found their potable water had mysteriously vanished, perhaps by magic or sabotage. The Buccaneer leader offered them a choice - sign a treaty or die of thirst. They relented and signed the treaty. That leader is a man named Allende, whom most believe to be a sorcerer due to the strange events surrounding him. A former prison guard claims to have shot him point blank, only for the man to stand back up unharmed, for example. Allende and the Buccaneers welcome any to use their harbors safely and freely for as long as the island is in view, to trade for water, salt pork and information, and the ships that crew there are always happy to sign Letters of Marque for any that'll hire them. However, once the island is out of view, its inhabitants are happy to engage in vicious piracy against any ship whose name is not listed on one of their various Letters of Marque.

Third, the Crimson Roger, is less a group and more a single ship. Its crew are bloodthirsty, vicious and terrifying. They take no prisoners and leave no survivors. They seem to target ships bearing Syrneth artifacts more often than others, and no one is entirely sure how they find them. There is only one eyewitness account of the Crimson Roger - the captain of His Lordship's Mistress, a merchant ship that escaped an attack after the Crimson Roger sank her sister ship, the Grey Dog. He reported that the crew of the Crimson Roger used strange devices in combat, possibly of Syrne origin, and their captain was a tall man with curly hair and a scythe that could cut through flesh and wood like they were paper. The captain shouted at the fleeing ship, telling them to tell the world of the Crimson Roger and her Captain Reis, and that when they next met, he'd cut them all in half. The captain of the merchant ship retired in terror, and within a month His Lordship's Mistress was lost at sea, along with all hands. The captain was found cut in half, lengthwise, in his home a week later, with the word 'Reis' written on the wall in blood. Queen Elaine has placed an 8000 Guilder reward for proof of Reis' death, which presumably would require his scythe.

Fourth, the Sea Dogs are a group of pirates in the northwest who focus on Montaigne and Castillian ships. They favor small, fast ships and never attack Avalon vessels of any kind. Some believe they are connected to Queen Elaine, which she denies, but few believe her. The Sea Dog crews seem to operate largely independently, and the most famous of them is the crew led by Captain Jeremiah Berek of the Black Dawn. Berek is a dashing man whose crew is loyal to the death. Some say he uses Glamour to gain this loyalty, but there's no solid proof. The Sea Dogs appeared in the Avalon battles against the Castillian Armada, and Berek's daring leadership played a huge role in their defeat, which only strengthens claims that the Dogs work for Elaine.

Finally, the Vesten Raiders seek out merchant ships while crewing longships out of, usually, cold fog banks. They wield the power of Vesten skalds and Eisen mercenaries, and the drums they beat to time their oars have become feared by all merchants. When they appear, they blow a ram's horn three times. This is a signal to their prey - lower sails and surrender, or be prepared to fight to the last. The Raiders do not take prisoners - they have no interest in slaves. They do, however, make a policy of leaving one person alive whenever they slaughter a crew, to spread word of their deeds. More hysterical tales claim they have rune-covered figureheads that spit lightning, that they go to battle in a madness and wear horned helmets, that they can shrug off blows that'd kill any man. More sensible merchants know these tales are caused by drunkenness, but also that the Raiders are a terrifying threat to any merchant ship not backed by the Vendel League.

Then you have the secret societies! They operate behind the scenes of the world, manipulating events for their various goals. They are:
The Brotherhood of the Coast: Pirates that prey on the corrupt and decadent and fight to be free men, even if it kills them.
Die Kreuzritter: A group descended from 12th century Eisen knights who travelled to the Crescent Empire to fight 'heathen hordes', and discovered something that utterly changed their order, transforming them into monster hunters who battle armed with knowledge few have.
The Explorer's Society: A group who began as a scholarly club in Castille's Odiseo region, and is now a society of adventurer-scholars seeking out the lore and secrets of the Syrneth ruins. They have gone underground to avoid the Inquisition.
The Invisible College: A small team of priests and scientists that have worked to resist the Inquisition, smuggling papers and research to be conducted out of view of the Inquisitors. They will see science pushed forward, even at risk of their own lives.
The Knightly Order of the Rose and Cross: A gentle's order dedicated to the ancient ideals of chivalry - protecting the weak, defeating injustice and making the world better. They are either the world's greatest heroes or a bunch of idiot manchildren who have no idea what they're doing. Or both.
Los Vagabundos: A small, elite group of heroes, begun in Castille but now covering the continent, who seek to uphold the rule of just kings and queens and overthrow those that oppress the people.
Mociutes Skara: The Grandmother's Shawl, a group begun in the Sarmatian Commonwealth during the War of the Cross, who respond to disasters to bring aid, comfort and shelter. They seek to end war forever.
The Rilasciare: An extremely disorganized but very dangerous organization, dedicated to overthrowing what it names the Two Tyrannies: monarchy and the Church. It does this by wielding the power of ideas.
Sophia's Daughters: Vodacce women are practically slaves, and so a covert organization has developed that seeks to change that, one Prince at a time. While their focus is primarily Vodacce, they are also happy to work to protect and advise women with power in any nation.

Next time: The Syrneth, 2e.

PoontifexMacksimus
Feb 14, 2012

Thinking about it, both Scotland and Ireland being largely "eh, 's fine" with English overlordladyship feels very weird, and somewhat counter to maximizing drama potential.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
Brotherhood of the Coast doesn't seen to have a good plan going:
If they promise they won't attack shipping in exchange for statehood, what the heck are they going to do for a living?

Močiutės Skara is a wild name, I tell you what.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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7th Sea 2: They're Magical Hi-Tech Ancient Ruins BUT NOT ALIENS

So, the Syrne. The Syrne were a pre-human civilization with ruins scattered across the globe, and these ruins have become a treasure trove for archaeologists and adventurers - if a dangerous one. Their partial artifacts have been found across Theah and surrounding islands, all over the dang place. Well preserved sites are rare, however. Around 50 years ago, Leandra Souza founded the Explorer's Society in Castille, and now there are chapterhouses in several nations, dedicated to learning as much as they can about the Syrneth, preserving their artifacts for study. Adventuers and independent treasure hunters funding by nobles also hunt for Syrneth artifacts, not for information, but for money. See, Syrne artifacts are highly fashionable right now, and private collections are very prestigious, so nobles will pay a high price for whatever you find.

Some Syrne ruins are obvious. There are buildings in Montaigne that, while inhabited by humans for centuries, were not built by them, quite clearly. They are tall, impossibly slender, and have no clear means of support. Other areas, they're buried deep, and some locations are even heavily trapped or home to unnatural beasts. One of the more famous ruins is in the tunnels under Charouse, capital of Montaigne. There are maps, but none cover the full extent of the tunnel system, which averages 15 feet tall and 10 feet wide in most caverns. They have existed far longer than the city and were deliberately made. Spiral pillars support stone arches with decorative carvings, and the stone matches none in the region. Currently, the tunnels are mainly in use as a sewer system for Charouse, and no one is actually sure where the waste drains to. Some people also live in the tunnels. Several Explorer parties have gone into them, and while most passages are full of human waste, they've made some interesting finds. Strange ornamental metal objects have been found which would fit on a humanoid figure, though some believe these are discarded Montaigne decorations...albeit in a style that matches no Thean fashion, and in areas where there was no waste. More impressive was the discovery of the so-called Star Map, a vast spherical chamber reached via narrow bridge, suspended 50 feet over the bottom of the sphere. Gemstones line the sphere, reproducing what appears to be a map of the Thean heavens...including stars that don't appear to exist in the sky. It is believed based on some geometrical calculations that the chamber lies directly underneath l'Empereur's palace. L'Empereur is not especially friendly to the Explorers and has set the city guard on them, and the local residents don't welcome them, either. Shortly after the map was discovered, the explorers had their rooms ransacked and their notes stolen. No one is sure if this means the royals knew about the chamber or not, and if so, why.

Then there's the Signore Catacombs, which may or may not be a natural feature. The Signore Islands are all of hard, non-porous rock, and the entire chain is run through with tunnels. They follow no pattern and their surfaces are rough, but there are regularly spaced shelves in the stone. Like the Montaigne tunnels, these go for miles and are largely uncharted, though they're only an average seven to eight feet tall and five to seven wide. Often they run in levels, stacked atop each other, with the sea flooding the lower levels. The Merchant Princes of Vodacce have used the tunnels as tombs, as the shelves are wide enough to hold human bodies, and have been in use for that by several major families for generations. This makes it hard to tell if anything found in the tunnels has been there for centuries or whether it just washed out of the sea or fell from the various corpses.

Other sites exist throughout Theah in small pockets. A number of western islands are apparently old Syrneth havens - most famously the Thalusian islands west of Avalon, but pretty much every island out in the west seems to have at least something. Explorers travel there often, as no one owns the islands and so no one can bar them except pirates and rivals. There are reports of aeries in the Ussuran mountains that are too large for any known bird, and pirates speak of lands in the south where lakes boil and giant insect remains have been found. Of course, some of these tales are almost certainly inventions of fancy. Syrne ruins also show up sometimes in other continents, but most nations care less about preserving them than the Explorers do.

The sidebar on who the Syrne are explains the sum total of what the game is going to set down in stone. The Syrne appear to have been similar to humanity, but with technology that is more advanced than 17th century science can understand or conceive of. There is no record of their appearance, but they were probably bipedal, and their tools seem designed for human-like hands of human-like size. Because they appear to have quickly and completely vanished, most scholars believe some great disaster destroyed them, though some believe that the Leshiye, Dievai and Sidhe are surviving Syrneth remnants. If so, none of the three are willing to admit or talk about it.

Besides the Syrne, Theah also has monsters in its wild lands. Most are not capable of intellect, though some can. These tend to be the most dangerous. Constanzo Rodriguez of the Explorers has spent most of his life cataloguing animals, and his ever-growing Complete Bestiary has brought the old man lots of prestige. It includes several monsters. Ghosts appear to be the lingering souls of the dead, typically wandering the place they died and appearing as they did the moment of death. Some ghosts appear to interfere with the use of some sorceries - most notable Montaigne's ghosts, which can prevent the use of Porte in their vicinity. Some Montaignes have also got the rare talent for trapping ghosts in mirrors, and some nobles display them as entertainment at parties. The Church associates them with the sin of Envy.

Ghouls are ape-like monsters that can, apparently, sense the wounded from miles away. They prefer to eat living flesh, but are generally too weak to capture it themselves, so they prey on injured animals...and humans, as they can't seem to tell the two apart. Field hospitals must be guarded by night to prevent ghoul attacks, and most soldiers are terrified of ghouls finding them while injured. Ghouls following an army are a bad omen. The Church associates them with the sin of Gluttony.

Kobolds are typically found in uninhabited forests, especially in Eisen. They were the models for the stone statues used as gargoyles atop cathedrals and other buildings. This is because kobolds are very bloodthirsty, but very territorial, and will never settle in an area in which they see another of their kind. The statues are an attempt to trick them. They have immense fangs and claws, are very tough, and their bite is mildly venomous. The Church associates them with the sin of Greed.

Sirens have an upper torso resembling a human woman and the lower body of a fish. They exclusively eat meat, and they love human flesh. They are known to imitate drowning women to lure in ships, in the hopes of an attempted rescue turned meal. They sometimes beckon for sailors to swim with them for the same reason. They also follow ships in hopes of shipwrecks. Once a sailor is in the water, they will swim up and make soothing warbles before attacking with sharp nails and shark-like teeth. Their necks expand to accomodate large pieces of meat, and they make a high keening while eating that is believed to be a sound of satisfaction. This is called the siren's song, and it is terrifying to most sailors. The Church associates them with the sin of Lust.

Wights are mobile corpses. They tend not to use weapons, favoring their own hands, turned into filthy, bony talons. However, despite this, they are quite clever and may even be capable of reasoning, though they do not ever speak. Most pious Theans believe Wights are born when a man who is too proud of his deeds dies of unnatural causes, whose pride prevents them from moving on to the afterlife. Rodriguez disputes this, believing that wights are actually caused by a sort of disease spread by contact with other wights. Because wights are so hard to destroy, the few cadavers he's gotten to examine are all too mangled for dissection, however. Wights are most often found near the sea. The Church, obviously, associates them with the sin of Pride.

Other monsters of Theah include drachens, griffons and night terrors, none of whom are encountered very often. No drachen has been seen in living memory, in fact. Night terrors seem to be able to invade dreams and attack from them, while griffons hunt in large packs. Beyond this, little is known of their behavior. The Church identifies drachens with Wrath, night terrors with Sloth and griffons with no particular sin.

Next time: Chargen.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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NoWayToTheOldWay posted:

Thinking about it, both Scotland and Ireland being largely "eh, 's fine" with English overlordladyship feels very weird, and somewhat counter to maximizing drama potential.

Well, the implication is that the Inish by and large hate the Avalons and are just waiting for Elaine to gently caress up and lose the Graal, while the Highlanders are basically a rebellion in the making that are kept back only because their king currently believes that they have more freedom in nominal service to Elaine than in open independence.

unseenlibrarian
Jun 4, 2012

There's only one thing in the mountains that leaves a track like this. The creature of legend that roams the Timberline. My people named him Sasquatch. You call him... Bigfoot.
And really, being a woman named Elaine in country with story-powered-magic and having vague Arthurian ties is like waving a sign saying "I will die young and probably be sent floating down a river on a mourning bier" so they all figure they won't have to follow her for long.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

unseenlibrarian posted:

And really, being a woman named Elaine in country with story-powered-magic and having vague Arthurian ties is like waving a sign saying "I will die young and probably be sent floating down a river on a mourning bier" so they all figure they won't have to follow her for long.

That was the whole setup for the Sidhe and Avalon in the first edition. The Sidhe, by sheer hubris and getting trapped in their stories, managed to engineer their own annihilation and downfall of Glamour in Avalon - presumably unless the PCs got involved. Elaine was heading for a tragic fall and everyone in power knew it.

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion


Did the metaplot ever do anything with the Bloody Bonnie trapped by the faerie queen thing, or is that where it stopped? As I recall, that's where the princess's faerie half came from.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Just stopped there, yeah.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Rifts Dimension Book 4: Skraypers, Part 3: "Even speaking is difficult and the loudest noise possible is a mean or a hoarse whisper with words ... spoken ... very ... slowly ... broken by ... pauses ... like this."

Charizolon Planetary System

So, without interstellar flight technology, the conquests of the Turlok have so far been limited to their own system, Charizolon. We'll get some confusing contradictions later on, but for now, they can only travel to their own system. They've conquered just about every world in their system, with only the planet of Seeron still maintaining a constant resistance. Each world is generally Star Warsish, with a single terrain type dominating it.

Starting with the places who hardly matter: Charizol is the sun. Vuulok is the Tarlok homeworld; you'd think we get more on it. But no, we get no useful detail other than a rehashed description of the Tarlok themselves. Trath is the outermost world - as such, it's a Pluto analogue, and only has some Tarlok mines and a spaceport.

And we can move on to places with actual detail. :eng101:

Forshell

A gas giant with five moons and locked in a binary orbit with another world (Avulor), of which the only one with real detail is Raazul - it's a jungle / swamp moon that the Tarlok have heavily colonized. The natives are the Glinerach and Nazzer. The Glinerach (gline-rock) are slug-people who led an idyllic life until the Tarlok hit them with and engineered plague that wiped out half their people. It's the kind of blatant tear-jerker tale that Siembieda loves, where a noble, kind race is boot-stomped repeatedly to make the baddies look even badder. The Nazeer are armed snakes that are "natural hunter-killers" who have become favored minions of the Tarlok. And you can play them, of course!


I'll let you figure out which the bad ones are here.
  • Glinerach R.C.C.: Highly intelligent, the glinerach serve as translators, investigators, and in various brainy roles for the Tarlok. However, they put up subtle, passive-aggressive resistance to their masters. They get very high mental traits, surprisingly good physical traits, with their only weak points being speed and looks. They're mega-damage creatures, can speak any language, swim real good, regenerate, get spines with a hallucinogenic poison that's a huge set of penalties, and psionic powers focusing on telemechanics. Also, they're all great singers, which is weird given their "primitive vocal cords" (they need special speakers to talk normally). I guess they sing whale-style or something. They often wear robes that are forced upon them by the Tarlok to sheath their poisonous spines.
  • Nazeer R.C.C.: Though they fought the Tarlok fiercely, at this point the Nazeer are largely subjugated. They're snake + bug + ape, making for fairly generic smart predators. They get sizeable combat bonuses, including the coveted automatic dodge due to them being slippery unsnakes. Other than that, they're dumb and tough mega-damage creatures, with regeneration, natural swimming, supernatural strength, psionics based around invisibility and combat, and a variety of weaksauce natural attacks. Other than that, they get a generic hunting skill package, and hate the Glinerach due to the Gs being a bunch of liberal elites from Space Harvard.
  • Chyknz Worm: Not a playable race, but a leech several feet long with a paralytic venom. The Tarlok use these to paralyze or torture captives. They're nothing like chickens other than being vaguely domesticated.

Avulor

A waterworld with very little land, though it's not technically water, but instead a heavier, lavender fluid called "Breen". The natives are the Cyden, who are creatures from the world lagoon. Though the Tarlok have colonized their world and rule them in name, the Cyden are left to mostly do their own thing and really don't care about what happens elsewhere since the Tarlok can't really invade or interact with them without environmental suits. Only a handful of them actually serve the Tarlok because... why do they serve? Well, I guess because they're the evil ones, and that's what evil ones do.


Just a swift current away from a full frontal view.
  • Cyden R.C.C.: I mean, sure, you could play one, I guess, but if you go a few weeks without bathing Breen, you die, and neither Rifts Earth or Seeron (the primary Skrapers setting we haven't even gotten to, because the organization in this is rear end-backwards) is likely to have any Breen baths. Also, being immersed in water actively poisons them - those that serve the Tarlok can get environmental suits, but that's it. If you can somehow get over all that, they're generically strong, smart, and aquatic (with the way too common weakness of "ugly"). They generally choose the classes of Wilderness Scout (exists) , Warrior/Hunter (doesn't exist) or Nomadic Tribesman (doesn't exist). Those that serve the Tarlok get a generic wilderness / military skill package. Also, they can learn Spellsongs from Rifts World Book Seven: Underseas, but the fact that they have no whales to teach them and have a small issue with being poisoned by water is a pretty big hurdle to jump over for that.

Talavera

"The sprawling jungles and forests of Talavera are what set it apart from the rest of the worlds in the Charizolon System." Wait, wasn't Raazul another jungle zone? Well, it's not technically a world, I suppose... anyway, there were three races that lived in harmony and peace with the environment until the Tarlok poo poo-kicked them. Seems to be a theme. The big difference is that they were making peaceful interplanetary contact with Seeron, but Tarlok's invasion and engineered diseases cut that short. Time for some playable races, then!


The good, the bad, and the stupid.
  • Seleniak R.C.C.: Duckbill dinosaur-themed aliens that are also good at leaping and climbing. They're agile and fast, but explicitly not mega-damage creatures, making them fall far, far short of the other races we've seen. They can pick an O.C.C. of their own, but seem to tend towards adventure or western-themed (huh?) O.C.C.s. They're supposed to be relatively gentle and benevolent, and so the Tarlok don't see any particular use for them other than to sell them to the Splugorth as slaves. (Those are the interdimensional slaver baddies from Rifts World Book Two: Atlantis.) Wait, where did the Splugorth come from?! Well, we'll get to them much, much later.
  • Lashreg R.C.C.: So, these are savage lizardmen that ain't afraid of nothin'. They like to lash out at the slightest provocation, which is a problem given they're not mega-damage creatures. They get some combat bonuses and high physical traits, but are dumb, ugly, and get penalties in cold environments. When even the book characterizes them as "just another chest-thumping, hot-headed race of warring, barbarian D-Bees" (seriously!), you know there's just not much to say about them.
  • Shrilt R.C.C.: Smaller, more peaceful, monkey-like versions of the Seleniak. They're supposed to be childish and innocent to a ridiculously mawkish extent. Some were brought to Seeron to eat local insect pets, but they escaped and now run wild as pests themselves on that planet. In any case, they're dumb and ugly, but charming, fast, and agile. Like the other races of Talavera, they're not mega-damage, and they just get a generic package of wilderness and gymnastic skills.
  • Belangial: A generic alien pack predator that fills space because they have a piece of art to characterize (not pictured here). It's mega-damage unlike everything else on this world, presumably so it can be an actual threat, even though it doesn't make much sense because the other races are just S.D.C. The Lashreg domesticate them somehow, even though they're bulletproof.

Dilm

A mountain planet where the Tarlok mine and occasionally capture new slaves from the local populace. We get a lot of :words: on mountain heights and tundra facts you'll likely never use.


It's time to talk about the pterodactyls and the bees.
  • Klied R.C.C.: Generic pterodactyl people with only modest technology. For some reason they have superhuman strength that can do mega-damage, but aren't mega-damage beings themselves. They have ridiculous strength, and for some reason are considered pretty even though the art looks like a winged lump of clay. They get some odd skill penalities (a penalty to swimming, prowling, and... gymnastics?), but can select an O.C.C. of their choice. Also there's a lot of words about how wearing mega-damage armor will penalize their wing use, but let's not pretend there's a choice here - PCs have to wear the drat stuff to survive!
  • Nikari R.C.C.: Relatives of the Klied who are ruthless hornet people. Apparently they live so high in the mountains the Tarlok have trouble capturing or attacking them. They're the more combat-focused version of the Klied, getting combat bonuses, natural radar (?), tolerance to cold, the ability to shoot fire, claws and stingers, and... well... a lot of things that make the Klied look like the boring chumps they are. But they get just the generic wilderness package of skills and can't select an O.C.C., so that's balanced... ish?

Seeron

The main Earth-like setting of this Dimension Book. It'll get its own chapter... at some point.

Next: Noble, benevolent fetish suits.

Alien Rope Burn fucked around with this message at 17:34 on Jun 22, 2018

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

Cythereal posted:

That was the whole setup for the Sidhe and Avalon in the first edition. The Sidhe, by sheer hubris and getting trapped in their stories, managed to engineer their own annihilation and downfall of Glamour in Avalon - presumably unless the PCs got involved. Elaine was heading for a tragic fall and everyone in power knew it.

Plus you had the thing with Elaine's daughter that had been... turned into a Sidhe? It's been a while.

megane
Jun 20, 2008



I think perhaps, out of all the endless, endless dumb meaningless numbers Rifts loves to put everywhere, the most stupid of all is the appearance score it attaches to every R.C.C. A billion alien species from across a hundred universes and they all have exactly the same standards of beauty.

It's a wonder normal Earth animals like spiders and lizards manage to breed at all, since they must all hate the sight of each other and dream about space elves all the time.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

Dawgstar posted:

Plus you had the thing with Elaine's daughter that had been... turned into a Sidhe? It's been a while.

That was part of it, yeah. Toss in things like Elaine only keeping the Grail as long as she never falls in love, her chief bodyguard being in love with her and being under a geas that he can only be slain while kissing his true love, etc. The Sidhe book at the end of the review noted that it all added up to Elaine being a tragic, doomed figure soon to die whose death will forever end the era of Glamour and the Sidhe in Avalon... unless half a dozen adventurers manage to intervene.

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion


Elaine could fall in love, but she could never admit she loved anything but Avalon.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

7th Sea 2: We are literally 16 pages from the halfway mark and just now hitting chargen

If I have one major problem with this book it's organizational. We literally took half the book to reach the part where mechanics even begin to exist, and will be past that before we know how, like, dicerolls work. Whoops. Anyway, we start off with the standard Wick-style game sugestion of reaching character concept by answering 20 questions.

quote:

1. What Nation is your Hero from?
2. How would you physically describe your Hero?
3. Does your Hero have recurring mannerisms?
4. What is your Hero's main motivation?
5. What is your Hero's greatest strength? Greatest weakness?
6. What are your Hero's most and least favorite things?
7. What about your Hero's psychology?
8. What is your Hero's single greatest fear?
9. What are your Hero's highest ambitions? Her greatest love?
10. What is your Hero's opinion of his country?
11. Does your Hero have any prejudices?
12. Where do your Hero's loyalties lie?
13. Is your Hero in love? Is she married or betrothed?
14. What about your Hero's family?
15. How would your Hero's parents describe her?
16. Is your Hero a gentle?
17. How religious is your Hero? What sect of the Church does she follow?
18. Is your Hero a member of a guild, gentle's club, or secret society?
19. What does your Hero think of Sorcery?
20. If you could, what advice would you give your Hero?

Having done that, you now get your Traits. As before, they are Brawn (strength and power), Finesse (coordination and agility), Resolve (willpower and endurance), Wits (ability to think on your feet) and Panache (charm). You start with all of them at 2, and have 2 additional points to spend as you like. Then, you add your Nation Bonus. Each Nation provides a bonus to one of two traits, your choice. I feel like they went with ten nations solely so they could have each trait be a bonus to four different nations. You apply the Nation bonus after spending your two free points.

Now, you select two Backgrounds. Backgrounds represent your past and its influence on you, but do not limit what you become. Each Background provides:
1. A Quirk, a trait that you can follow to gain Hero Points.
2. Advantages. You get all the listed ones for free. I want to say they all provide 5 points worth of advantages (before any national discounts) but I'm not totally sure. If your backgrounds have overlapping advantages, you get another advantage of the same cost as the duplicate, which you may choose freely.
3. Skills. You get 1 rank in five different skills. If your backgrounds have overlapping skills, those start at 2, not 1.

The Basic Backgrounds, which anyone can take, are:
Archaeologist: You studied Syrne ruins, and gain Hero Points when you turn artifacts over to museums, universities and public sites.
Aristocrat: You're a born noble, and you gain Hero Points when you prove that there's more to nobility than fancy clothes and court.
Army Officer: You were a command-ranked member of the army. You gain Hero Points when you seize command in moments of intense violence or danger.
Artist: You made art. You gain Hero Points when you make sacrifices to make Theah more beautiful.
Assassin: You were a hired killer. You gain Hero Points when you go out of your way to avoid killing an enemy or refuse an action because it might kill someone.
Cavalry: You were a cavalry soldier. You gain Hero Points when you apply your horseriding skills in uncommon situations.
Courtier: You were a diplomat and courtier. You earn Hero Points when you turn the tide of violence with charm or flair.
Crafter: You made useful things. You gain Hero Points when you use normal crafting skills to solve a problem that others deem too complex for such a simple solution.
Criminal: You broke the law. You earn Hero Points when you break the law in pursuit of a noble goal.
Doctor: You healed the sick. You earn Hero Points when you tend to a Villain's injuries or those of innocents harmed by a Villain.
Duelist: You devoted your life to the blade (or other weapon). You earn Hero Points when you resort to fighting to defend a noble cause.
Engineer: You studied how to apply knowledge and math to solve problems. You earn Hero Points when you use your technological skills to solve problems.
Explorer: You sought out far lands. You earn Hero Points when you see things few if any Theans have ever seen before.
Farmkid: You were raised on a farm. You earn Hero Points when you solve complex problems with simple methods from back home.
Hunter: You were a hunter. You earn Hero Points when you use your hunter's skills to save people from danger.
Jenny: You were a prostitude or seduction artist. You earn Hero Points when you resolve conflicts with seduction or sexiness.
Mercenary: You fought for cash. You earn Hero Points when you choose to use your skills for a reason worth more to you than money.
Merchant: You sold stuff. You earn Hero Points when you sell something for far less than it is really worth to someone who desperately needs it.
Naval Officer: You were in a ship's command crew. You earn Hero Points when you put the needs of the crew before the needs of the mission.
Orphan: You lost your parents young. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself to ensure someone else doesn't have to be alone.
Pirate: You were a pirate. You earn Hero Points when you make a personal sacrifice to ensure another's freedom.
Priest: You served as a priest. You earn Hero Points when you put aside words and take action to practice what you preach.
Professor: You taught others. You earn Hero Points when you use obscure textual knowledge to solve complex problems.
Pugilist: You punched people. You earn Hero Points when you drop what you're holding and fight unarmed, regardless of your foe's weapon.
Quartermaster: You took care of ships' supplies and other details. You earn Hero Points when you solve a problem for your crew.
Sailor: You sailed. You earn Hero Points when you put aside your own desires to ensure the safety and comfort of your allies.
Scholar: You knew things. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself in pursuit of knowledge.
Servant: You worked for someone else. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself to help someone with a difficult task.
Ship Captain: You commanded a ship. You earn Hero Points when you're the last of the crew to get to safety.
Soldier: You fought for an army. You earn Hero Points when you stick to the plan even if it puts you in danger.
Spy: You sought secrets for a nation. You earn Hero Points when you take great risks to discover secrets.


All Glamour Islanders may take the following backgrounds:
Bard: You told the old stories. You earn Hero Points for solving problems by following Legendary examples.
Knight Errant: You gained the magic of the Knights of Elilodd. You earn Hero Points when you uphold ideals of knightly virtue in ways that get you into trouble.
Privateer: You had a charter to sink ships for Avalon. You earn Hero Points when you defeat enemies of Crown of Avalon.
Unification Agent: You were hired by the Crown to keep the peace. You earn Hero Points when you ensure the United Kingdoms remain stable.
Avalons may take the following background:
Puritan: You were a reformed Objectionist that wanted to purify the Church of Avalon of Vaticine practice. You earn Hero Points when you expose the corruption, hypocrisy or ineffectiveness within the Vaticine Church.
Inish may take the following background:
Saoi (Wise One): You were granted the highest honor of Aosdana, a state association of artists. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself to protect artists.
Highlanders may take the following background:
Seanchaidh (Warrior-Poet): You were a historian and storyteller-lawyer. You earn Hero Points when you enforce the ancient laws of your people.
Castillians may take the following backgrounds:
Alquimista: You were a successful alchemist. You earn Hero Points when you improve others' lives via Alchemy.
Antropologo: You studied people, not ruins. You earn Hero Points when you solve problems for groups of strangers.
Diestro: You studied the art and beauty of the sword. You earn Hero Points when you beat trained duelists at fencing.
Mirabilis (Priest): You were a master scholar of the Vatiicine and member of the Ordo Doctorem Mirabilis. You earn Hero Points when you give of yourself to demonstrate the compassion and love of the Vaticine Church.
Eisen may take the following backgrounds:
Hexe: You were a master of Hexenwork, the dark sorcery of the dead. You earn Hero Points when you go out of your way to ensure the dead stay that way.
Krieger (Warrior): You survived the War of the Cross. You earn Hero Points when you fight to defend the defenseless or prevent destruction.
Ungetumjager (Monster Hunter): You hunted monsters. You earn Hero Points when you choose to hunt down inhuman creatures to ensure they can't hurt anyone again.
Vitalienbruder (Pirate): You were one of the Eisen dedicated to fair trade and equality on the sea. You earn Hero Points when you take from the rich to give to the poor.
Montaignes may take the following backgrounds:
L'Ami du Roi (Courtier): You are a favorite of the King. You earn Hero Points when you leverage that favor to solve problems.
Mousquetaire: You were sworn to protect the King and your fellow musketeers until death. You earn Hero Points when you are seriously injured while protecting your comrades or king.
Revolutionnaire: You were pledged to see Montaigne freed from the tyrant aristocrats. You earn Hero Points when you make personal sacrifices for the sake of liberty.
Sorcier Porte: You were a master of Porte, the sorcery of portals. You earn Hero Points when you close a Blessure opened by a Villain.
Sarmatians may take the following backgrounds:
Posel (Envoy): You were an advisor to the Sejm. You earn Hero Points when you insist on democracy when it'd be to your advantage not to take a vote.
Tremtis (Expatriate): You fled to the Commonwealth seeking asylum. You earn Hero Points when something from your past returns to haunt you.
Winged Hussar: You were a member of the greatest cavalry in the world. You earn Hero Points when you and your steed head recklessly into battle or conflict regardless of danger.
Zynys (Soothsayer): You tricked the Devil at the crossroads and gained his power. You earn Hero Points when you use something evil to do good.
Ussurans may take the following backgrounds:
Cossack: You were of the east, a horseman and warrior. You earn Hero Points when you leave something important behind so you can travel light.
Progressivist: You sought innovations to bring home to Ussura. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself to secure advanced technology.
Touched by Matushka: You were given power by Matushka - for a price. You earn Hero Points when you teach lessons in ways that'd make Matushka proud.
Whaler: You hunted whales. You earn Hero Points when you face down creatures that could swallow men whole.
Vestenmennavenjar can take the following backgrounds:
Bearsark: You fought with trance-like fury. You earn Hero Points when you let the GM decide your next action.
Guildmasteren: You helped manage the Vendel League. You earn Hero Points when you use Vendel League resources for something more noble than profit.
Sjorover (Pirate): You practiced the old ways of raiding. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself to ensure your place of honor at the Allfather's table.
Skald: You learned the secrets of the bones and fire. You earn Hero Poins when you use your Seidr knowledge to help other Heroes solve problems or thwart Villains.
Vodacce can take the following backgrounds:
Bravo: You swore to protect someone else. You earn Hero Points when you endanger yourself to defend that person's life.
Consigliere: You advised a Merchant Prince. You earn Hero Points when you take great risks to protect other people's secrets.
Esploratore: You traveled on behalf of a Prince. You earn Hero Points when you use foreign, non-Thean goods or knowledge to solve problems.
Sorte Strega: You must be a woman to take this. You have the power to sense and manipulate Fate. You earn Hero Points when you commit yourself to dangerous acts that you believe are destined.

After that, you get 10 points to spend adding or raising your skills, 1 for 1. You can't go above 3 in any skill this way. A skill at 3 lets you reroll any one die when you take a Risk using that skill. At 4, you also get the ability to make 2 Raises with a set of 15 when using that skill, rather than just 1 Raise per set of 10. At 5, you also get exploding 10s - that is, every time you roll a 10, you add and roll an additional die to your roll when using that skill. Skills are designed to be pretty open-ended in how they're used.

Skills:
Aim: Guns, throwing things, ranged combat.
Athletics: Acrobatic feats and dangerous physical stunts.
Brawl: Unarmed combat, grappling, dragging people.
Convince: Appealing to someone's better nature or getting them to trust you.
Empathy: Telling if someone is lying or how they're feeling.
Hide: Sneaking, concealing things, ambushing people with any weapon, making disguises or camouflage.
Intimidate: Forcing people to do what you want with threats - any kind.
Notice: Investigation and detecting detail.
Perform: Captivating audiences, getting across messages or emotions in your performances, doing shows.
Ride: Riding mounts, driving carriages, high speed vehicle chases.
Sailing: Navigating rigging, steering ships.
Scholarship: Nerding out about stuff, knowing things, medical skills.
Tempt: Bribery and seduction to get people to do things they really shouldn't.
Theft: Picking pockets, cracking safes, picking locks.
Warfare: Tactics, army command, breaching defenses.
Weaponry: Armed melee combat.

Then you get 5 points to buy any Advantages you didn't already get from your backgrounds. We'll get into those next time.

Next time: Sorcery is less than half the price of being a duelist each time you take it. This is completely accurate to its usefulness.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

megane posted:

I think perhaps, out of all the endless, endless dumb meaningless numbers Rifts loves to put everywhere, the most stupid of all is the appearance score it attaches to every R.C.C. A billion alien species from across a hundred universes and they all have exactly the same standards of beauty.

It gets particularly weird in books like Heroes Unlimited where it takes the time to point out Physical Beauty is based on human standards. Okay, fine. So it gives penalties for, say, having splotchy skin. Okay. But there's no penalty for being like, a walking rock or a giant mantis and the reasoning just kind of tumbles apart.

Appearance attributes are usually really dumb. (I'm also not a big fan of Charisma as a concept, but that at least has a flexible interpretation.)

ChaseSP
Mar 25, 2013


Any game that attaches charisma to appearances is either intentionally being dumb or the writer having issues from stuff irl from my own experience.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
7th Sea's fantastical elements always feel kind of vestigial once you throw away the old metaplot.

Like, they're there, but everyone is really here to act out an Errol Flynn movie (which is a-okay).

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

ChaseSP posted:

Any game that attaches charisma to appearances is either intentionally being dumb or the writer having issues from stuff irl from my own experience.

I think in this particular case it's just a legacy of Palladium's house system as a D&D knockoff.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

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

Those quirks are all over the place, applicability-wise. Some are the kinds of things that usually happen multiple times in a session, some could reasonably never come up at all.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

Ratoslov posted:

Those quirks are all over the place, applicability-wise. Some are the kinds of things that usually happen multiple times in a session, some could reasonably never come up at all.

It doesn't really matter because you can only get 1 Hero Point per Quirk per session and everyone has at least 2, plus you can swap them pretty easily in play.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

7th Sea 2: We are now halfway through this book.

So, advantages. Advantages cost between 1 and 5 points, though some Nations get discounts to some Advantages, and others have restructions. Except for a handful that are specifically noted, you can only buy them once. Advantages with the "Knack" tag (a K in a circle) cost a Hero Point to activate, but do not generally require an Action to perform - they just happen when you spend the Hero Point, though usually it'll need to be on your turn to make any dang sense. An Advantage with the "Innate" tag (a meeple) can only be taken at chargen and never through advancement. (Knacks, incidentally, only work on PCs if they allow it. You must pay them the Hero Point, and if they refuse it, the Knack just doesn't work on them.) The GM may veto use of an Advantage if it would be utterly silly, like seducing Elaine during the middle of a public speech, but generally speaking they can do what they say.

One Point Advantages
Able Drinker: You are never adversely affected by alcohol, ever, no matter how much you drink.
Cast Iron Stomach: You suffer no negative effects from spoiled or raw food, and you may gain sustenance from them, no matter what, ever.
Direction Sense: So long as you have any kind of reference point, you are never lost. You may not know what city you're in after getting knocked out, but you can always perfectly retrace your steps, no matter how winding the path, and you never get lost and turned around.
Foreign Born (Innate): You were raised in a different Nation than your own. Pick that Nation. You get a Bonus Die whenever you take any Risk that'd somehow benefit from your dual heritage.
Large (Innate): You can't take Small. You get a Bonus Die on any Risk that's easier due to being huge.
Linguist: You speak, read and write all Thean languages, even the dead ones.
Sea Legs: You get a Bonus Die on any physical Risk while on a ship at sea, and you are immune to all treacherous footing on a ship.
Small (Innate): You can't take Large. You get a Bonus Die on any Risk that's easier due to being tiny.
Survivalist: When in the wilderness, you can always find enough food for yourself and up to five other people, except in the most extreme wilderness, such as the desert or tundra. There, it's you and up to two other people.
Time Sense: You always know the time, and how long to the next sunrise or sunset, with less than a minute margin of error.

Two Point Advantages
Barterer (Knack): 1 point less for Glamour Islanders. You can activate this to get someone to cut you a deal, give you a discount or assure someone who knows you that you're totally good for it.
Come Hither (Knack): You can activate this to lure someone into a private room, then later leave the room without them, removing them from the scene. They may be rescued, but only long after you're gone.
Connection: You choose a specific type of contact. You can always find someone of that type to give you basic info or help you in some minor way that doesn't cost them or endanger them. If you want something harder to find or dangerous, you must spend a Hero Point or pay a cost they stipulate.
Disarming Smile (Knack): You can activate this to prevent someone from drawing a weapon, starting a fight or resorting to violence. They may still defend themself - but they won't start it.
Eagle Eyes: As long as you have clear line of sight, you can see perfectly out to a mile away. With a spyglass, you can even pick out fine details like the inscription on a ring. You get a Bonus Die on any Risk that relies on your keen vision heavily.
Extended Family (Knack): 1 point less for Ussurans. You can activate this to reveal a distant cousin that lives nearby and can give you resources, info or shelter.
Fascinate (Knack): You can activate this to grab someone's attention until the end of the scene or until you stop talking and/or paying attention to them, whichever comes first.
Friend at Court (Knack): You can activate this at a ball, feast or society function to reveal you have a close friend also attending.
Got It! (Knack): You can activate this to immediately pick a lock, crack a safe or disarm a trap.
Handy (Knack): You can activate this to instantly make a broken item, damaged gun, leaky ship or other similarly broken thing function normnally for the rest of the scene. At the end of the scene, or if it takes additional damage, the thing becomes entirely unusable until you have time to do serious repairs with proper tools.
Indomitable Will (Knack): You can activate this to automatically resist an attempt to intimidate, seduce or goad you.
Inspire Generosity (Knack): You can activate this to convince somneone to give you something you want, free, by the easiest means for them to do so.
Leadership (Knack): 1 point less for Sarmatians. You can activate this to inspire a group that can hear you to act, so long as they are at least of neutral disposition towards you. They will do whatever you command as long as it's not unreasonable, such as suicide.
Married to the Sea: You have access to a Ship. If you already had one, the Ship gains an additional Background.
Perfect Balance (Knack): You can activate this to move across a thing beam, jump to somehwere or otherwise perform a feat of perfect agility and balance.
Poison Immunity: 1 point less for Vodacce. You suffer only mild, brief discomfort from all poisons that are not normally lethal. Lethal poisons may also cause you to vomit but are still otherwise harmless.
Psst, Over Here (Knack): You may activate this while undetected to automatically lure someone away and knock them out, leaving everyone else unaware of you still.
Reckless Takedown (Knack): You may activate this to immediately defeat an entire Brute Squad, regardless of its Strength. After you do, you take 1 Dramatic Wound.
Reputation: You have a rep. Define it. When using it to your advantage in a social Risk, you get a Bonus Die. You can buy this multiple times, either to boost a rep's Bonus Dice (1 per purchase) or have multiple reps.
Second Story Work (Knack): You can activate this to find a way into a building or restricted area and enter it, bringing up to one other person with you. Everyone else has to find their own way in or wait for you to open a path.
Slip Free (Knack): You can activate this to escape from manacles, ropes or otherwise free yourself.
Sorcery: You gain your nation's Sorcery. You may earn this Advantage after chargen only via a Hero Story, not any other kind of Story. You may take this multiple times, with different effects based on your Sorcery.
Staredown (Knack): 1 point less for Eisen. You may activate this to intimidate someone into backing down from a threat, letting you into somehere or otherwise getting out of your way.
Streetwise (Knack): You can activate this to find a fixer, information dealer, black market or similar criminally inclined figure.
Team Player: When you spend a Raise to make an Opportunity, you can spend a seond Raise to activate it on behalf of a willing other Hero, so they don't have to spend their own Raise to do it.
Valiant Spirit: You begin each session with 2 Hero Points, not 1.

Three Point Advantages
An Honest Misunderstanding (Knack): You may activate this to edit, redact or otherwise alter something you or another Hero just said, 'reinterpreting' it into something inoffensively complimentary.
Bar Fighter: You get a Bonus Die when making Brawling Risks to fight with improvised weapons.
Boxer: You get a Bonus Die when making Brawling Risks to fight using only your own body.
Bruiser: You get a Bonus Die when making Weaponry Risks to fight using a two-handed weapon such as a zweihander, claymore, halberd or battle axe.
Brush Pass (Knack): You can activate this to pick someone's pocket, steal their ring off their finger or plant some small handheld item on them without being noticed.
Camaraderie: 1 point less for Montaignes. When you spend a Hero Point to aid an ally, they get 4 dice, not 3.
Deadeye: You get a Bonus Die when you make an Aim Risk using a pistol, blunderbuss or thrown weapon.
Dynamic Approach (Knack): You can activate this to change your Approach during an Action or Dramatic Sequence.
Fencer: You get a Bonus Die when making Weaponry Risks to fight using a one-handed bladed weapon.
Foul Weather Jack: You may have two Hero STories active at once, not just one.
Masterpiece Crafter: 1 less for Vesten. Pick a type of item, such as weapons, armor or paintings. When you make one of that type, you may spend extra time on it to make it of greater quality. When using normal materials, this is purely cosmetic - it is notably good quality and will draw a higher price if for sale, but that's it. If you use exotic materials, such as making a sword from meteoric iron, you may make it into a Signature Item for yourself or another Hero. The time required and if a material is exotic enough to qualify are up to the GM.
Opportunist (Knack): You may activate this when another Hero spends a Raise to make an Opportunity to immediately activate that Opportunity for yourself.
Ordained: 1 less for Castillians. You can always expect a refuge, shelter and meal at any church, and have free access to most, but not all, Church libraries. You get two Bonus Dice on social Risks against those that share your faith.
Patron: You have some kind of patron that keeps you employed. You start each session with 1 Wealth, and you may spend a Hero Point to call in a favor from your patron - usually a political or mercantile one. Your patron may occasionally ask you favors or otherwise want you to produce something, depending on what they pay you to do.
Quick Reflexes: Pick a skill. When using that skill, you may always take actions as if you had an additional Raise. (So if you roll 3 Raises, you act as if you had 4 for timing purposes. If you spend 2, you then act as if you had 2 Raises instead of 1.) You can take this multiple times, but it must be a different skill each time.
Rich: You begin each session with 3 Wealth.
Signature Item: You have an important item. Describe it and why it's important. You may always spend a Hero Point to have it appear in the next scene if it's lost or stolen, to get 2 Bonus Dice on a Risk while using it, to attack a foe to deal Wounds equal to Raises spent plus your highest Trait while using it, or the prevent Wounds equal to Raises spent plus your highest Trait while using it. You must describe how it helps you do that when you do it, of course, and it has to make sense to the GM.
Sniper: You get a Bonus Die when making Aim Risks using a long-barrel musket, longbow or crossbow.
Tenure: You can expect refuge, shelter and food at any university, and access to most, though not all, of their libraries. You get 2 Bonus Dice on social Risks against members of institutions of higher learning and those that respect university education.
Virtuoso: Choose a type of performance, such as song, a specific instrument or dance. You get a Bonus Die when making Perform Risks using that art.

Four Point Advantages
Academy (Innate): You attended a military academy. When making a Risk using Athletics, Warfare or Ride, you may add +1 to the value of all rolled dice.
Alchemist: Castillians only. You may spend a Hero Point to produce an immediately useful exlir or potion. Using one in an Action or Dramatic Sequence requires a Raise, of course. Examples are smoke bombs, a single-round buff to a Trait, or extremely slippery oil, but anything of similar utility the GM agrees makes sense is probably doable.
Hard to Kill: You are not Helpless when you have 4 Dramatic Wounds. Instead, any Villain that takes a Risk against you while you have 4 Dramatic Wounds gets 3 Bonus Dice instead of 2. You have an additional tier of Wounds, becoming Helpless when you take your 5th Dramatic Wound.
Legendary Trait: Select a Trait. When you roll a Risk using that trait, remove one die from your pool. That die automatically rolls a 10. If your 10s explode, it also explodes.
Lyceum (Innate): You studied at a lyceum or finishing school. When making a Risk using Convince, Intimidate or Tempt, you may add +1 to the value of all rolled dice.
Miracle Worker (Knack): For some reason, you know how to heal wounds. You can activate this and spend a Raise on your Action to heal another Hero you can touch, curing them of one 1 Dramatic Wound.
Riot Breaker: You're good at fighting groups. When you take Wounds from a Brute Squad, you take fewer Wounds based on REsolve, to a minimum of 1.
Seidr: Vesten only. You know how to see Names and have studied as a Skald. You can spend a Hero Point to make a speech about another character, giving them a 1-die Reputation of your choice (or increasing an existing one by 1), or altering one of their existing reputations of your choice but keeping its dice the same. If you change a Reputation, anyone who uses the new one against them gets its Bonus Dice as well. You may spend a Hero Point to cast runes, dice or bones. When you do, you may ask the GM a single yes/no question about the future, which they will answer honestly (for that particular point in time; it doesn't control dice rolls - just gives the most likely answer). Beyond that caveat, this is never wrong. You may spend a Hero Point while looking at a mortal human to instantly know their name, regardless of any disguise or lie, and you may always recognize them (and their name) for the rest of the scene.
Specialist: Choose a skill you have 3+ ranks in. When making a Risk using any other skill during an Action or Dramatic Sequence, you do not have to pay additional Raises to improvise with that skill. You may repurchase this to swap your chosen skill, but if you do, you lose the old one.
Trusted Companion: You either have a small group of loyal people or a single ally who would die for you. If your ally or allies help you in a Risk, you get a Bonus Die if you can describe how, specifically, they help. If you send them out to do something and they must make a Risk, the GM will have them roll 5 dice. They can take 5 Wounds before becoming Helpless.
University (Innate): You attended university. When making a risk using Scholarship. Empathy or Notice, you may add +1 to the value of all rolled dice.

Five Point Advantages
Duelist Academy: You have a Dueling Style and access to Duelist Techniques. You may purchase this multiple times, gaining a new Style each time. (It is not usually worth it.)
I Won't Die Here (Knack): 2 less for Eisen. You may activate this to ignore all negative effects from Dramatic Wounds for the rest of the round, including becoming Helpless.
I'm Taking You With Me (Knack): 2 less for Vesten. You may activate this to increase all damage you deal for the rest of the round by your number of Dramatic Wounds.
Joie de Vivre (Knack): 2 less for Montaignes. You may activate this just before a confrontation with a Villain to make a pithy or clever comment about how it's always darkest before the dawn or something similar. Every Hero that hears the speech counts all dice that roll equal to or under their skill on their next roll as 10s.
Spark of Genius (Knack): 2 less for Castillians. Select a field of academic study. When you make a Risk and can call on that specialist field, you may activate this to get additional Raises equal to your Wits automatically.
Strength of Ten (Knack): 2 less for Ussurans. When performing a feat of raw strength as part of a Risk, you can activate this to increase the value of all rolled dice by the higher of your Brawn or Resolve.
The Devil's Own Luck (Knack): 2 less for Glamour Islanders. You can activate this after taking a Risk to reroll any number of dice that you choose, keeping the new rolls (barring any other reroll effects). You can only use this once per scene.
Together We Are Strong (Knack): 2 less for Sarmatians. You can activate this to give any number of your Raises to another Hero in the same scene that can see or hear you.
We're Not So Different... (Knack): 2 less for Vodacce. You can activate this to convince a Villain you are on their side. They consider you a trusted ally until they see you do something Heroic or you refuse to do something Villainous for them. You can only use this on a given Vllain once, ever.

So, having picked your Advantage, you then get to pick your Arcana. All Heroes, according to the Sorte strega, are touched by Fate, which gives them an aura that can be read. You have two Arcana - your Virtue and your Hubris. Your Virtue is what makes you truly Heroic, while your Hubris is your greatest emotional challenge. You select one Arcana to be your Virtue and another to be your Hubris. (You can have them both be the same, but you don't have to.) You can activate your Virtue once per session. There is no cost to doing so. You may choose to activate your Hubris to gain a Hero Point, and the GM can offer you a Hero Point to activate it - but you can refuse that. You never jhave to activate your Hubris.

Arcana:
The Fool: As a Virtue, you can activate this to escape danger from the current scene, though you can only rescue yourself this way, no one else. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you investigate something unusual and dangerous.
The Road: As a Virtue, you can activate this when you meet a character for the first time - even a Villain. They treat you as friendly for one scene. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when your Hero decides they can't do something without someone else's help, whether that's them spending a Hero Point to give bonus dice or using an Advantage on your behalf or whatever.
The Magician: As a Virtue, you can activate this and target a Villain. Until the end of the scene, you can't spend Hero Points and they can't spend Danger Points. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you chase power and make a dangerous or troublesome deal.
The Lovers: As a Virtue, you can activate this when another Hero takes Wounds to prevent them from taking any Wounds. You take one Dramatic Wound instead. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you become enamored with someone you really shouldn't.
The Wheel: As a Virtue, you can activate this to delay an Opportunity or Consequence by 1 Action. As a Hubris, you get 2 Hero Points when you choose to fail a Risk without rolling instead of 1.
The Devil: As a Virtue, you may activate this after a Villain spends Raises for an action. The Villain loses the spent Raises, but the action automatically fails. As a Hubris, you gain a Hero Point when you accept someone's lies or bad deal.
The Tower: As a Virtue, you may activate this to gain 2 Hero Points instead of 1 from a Quirk or Hubris activation. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you show disdain, contempt or otherwise look down on a Villain or someone else who can cause harm to your friends.
The Beggar: As a Virtue, you may activate this to discover the type of a Brute Squad or the Rank and Advantages of a Villain. As a Hubris, you receive a Hero Point when you want something and do something unwise to get it.
The Witch: As a Virtue, you may activate this to ask one yes/no question about an NPC, which the GM will answer honestly - and including any qualifiers that need more full explanation. As a Hubris, you receive a Hero Point when you try to get someone else to do your dirty work and it backfires.
The War: As a Virtue, you may activate this the first time you wound a Villain in a fight to cause a Dramatic Wound on top of the normal Wounds dealt. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you go back from a fallen comrade or refuse to leave a wounded ally.
The Hanged Man: As a Virtue, you may activate this take a Risk's Consequences in place of another Hero. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you spend an action pausing in hesitation, doubt or uncertainty before actually doing anything.
Coins (for the Ferryman): As a Virtue, you may activate this to take your first action before anyone else in the round can act, no matter what. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you refuse to leave well enough alone or quit while ahead and it gets you in trouble.
The Thrones: As a Virtue, you may activate this to cancel the effects of Fear on you and your friends. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you're stubborn and refuse to change your mind in the face of evidence.
The Moonless Night: As a Virtue, you may activate this when you act secretly or through intermediaries. For the next Risk, all of your dice count as a Raise when calculating Raises. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you fail to understand something important about the plot and this leads to danger for you or others.
The Sun: As a Virtue, you may activate this when you're the center of attention. For the next Risk, all of your dice count as a Raise when calculating Raises. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you refuse a meaningful offer of aid.
The Prophet: As a Virtue, you may activate this to know whenever someone lies to you for the rest of the scene. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point whenever you strongly defend an opinion at an inappropriate time or place.
Reunion: As a Virtue, you may activate this and pick another Hero in the scene. You both pool your Raises for the round, sharing the same pool for the purpose of spending Raises on taking actions. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you bring up old grudges or bad feelings when it will lead to trouble.
The Hero: As a Virtue, you may activate this to add your target's Fear rating as Bonus Dice to your Risk. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when your brash, cocky or reckless action causes trouble for you and another Hero.
The Glyph: As a Virtue, you may activate this to prevent any magical effect of any kind from affecting you. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you refuse to solve a problem using Sorcery, artifacts or other mystic effects you don't trust.
The Emperor: As a Virtue, you may activate this to give a Hero Point to all other Heroes in the scene. As a Hubris, you get a Hero Point when you lose your temper and fly off the handle, causing trouble.

Next time: Advancement.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

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

Alien Rope Burn posted:

Klied R.C.C.: Generic pterodactyl people with only modest technology. For some reason they have superhuman strength that can do mega-damage, but aren't mega-damage beings themselves. They have ridiculous strength, and for some reason are considered pretty even though the art looks like a winged lump of clay. They get some odd skill penalities (a penalty to swimming, prowling, and... gymnastics?), but can select an O.C.C. of their choice. Also there's a lot of words about how wearing mega-damage armor will penalize their wing use, but let's not pretend there's a choice here - PCs have to wear the drat stuff to survive!

So do Klied just severely injure themselves every time they scratch an itch or go to the bathroom?

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Ratoslov posted:

Those quirks are all over the place, applicability-wise. Some are the kinds of things that usually happen multiple times in a session, some could reasonably never come up at all.

Yeah, the one that stood out to me was the Porte sorcerer, which gets "Earn a Hero Point when you close a Blessure that a Villain ripped open.", which relies on A) there being a Porte villain, B) that Porte villain being particularly unsubtle in opening portals, and C) going through the actual process of closing it, which is actually a pretty decent headache to do. Granted, in theory a decent GM should give you a Porte villain to service this, but either it means you're facing the Eight Evil Porte Mages after awhile or changing it out for something more regularly available like "Earn a Hero Point when you solve a problem for your crew."

Kurieg posted:

So do Klied just severely injure themselves every time they scratch an itch or go to the bathroom?

I would presume nothing, because those aren't attacks. But if they start a bar brawl then nearly everybody dies.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:
Glassing someone is considered a kindness since its' less lethal than punching them.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

Alien Rope Burn posted:

Yeah, the one that stood out to me was the Porte sorcerer, which gets "Earn a Hero Point when you close a Blessure that a Villain ripped open.", which relies on A) there being a Porte villain, B) that Porte villain being particularly unsubtle in opening portals, and C) going through the actual process of closing it, which is actually a pretty decent headache to do. Granted, in theory a decent GM should give you a Porte villain to service this, but either it means you're facing the Eight Evil Porte Mages after awhile or changing it out for something more regularly available like "Earn a Hero Point when you solve a problem for your crew."

Conversely, it seems like Castillian duelists have an edge. Take your Duelist, take your Diestro and get a bonus for what you were going to do anyway.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

7th Sea 2: Story Time.

Your character sheet, at this point, is mostly done. However, next up is your Story. Each PC has one (or sometimes two) Hero Stories, and these are your main method of advancement. (Well, them and GM Stories, but those are GM-controlled and dealt with later.) First, when you make a new Story, you decide what theme you want to explore. You can usually only have one Hero Story at a time, which you must either resolve or abandon before you can get another. So, first, we come up with a simple description, usually just one word. Revenge. Absolution. Amnesia. Then you expand it a little with a sentence that specifies what. Revenge: I must find the man who killed my parents. Amnesia: I can't remember who I am. Absolution: I failed to protect my sister, and must find a way to atone.

Now, we must determine what we want - our Goal. There's two parts to that. First, the Ending of our Story. Endings aren't meant to be suspenseful for the players - they tell the GM what outcome you're aiming for with the Hero Story. GM Stories can be suspenseful, but with these, you know what you're going for. So for our Revenge story, let's say our Ending is 'I slay the man who killed my parents.' Amnesia: 'I discover that I am the younger brother of Queen Elaine, royal of Avalon.' Absolution: 'I save a young girl from a monster, like I couldn't save my sister.' So now we have our solid ending - though the game does suggest we put these in third person to remember that our Hero probably has no idea what the ending is. These should always be some actionable goal we can do, eventually. If the Ending becomes unattainable, the player and GM work together to craft a related but feasible Ending. Second, we determine the Reward. See, when a Story resolves, that's when a character gets advancement. Depending on what we want, we know how many Steps the Story has.

Steps, see, are how many distinct, related events must occur before we can reach the Ending. Steps should be achievable, but we don't know all of them in advance. In facy, when a Story begins, all we know is the first Step. Revenge: Find the man who sold my parents out to the killer. Amnesia: Learn my name. Absolution: Find evidence of a monster. You can be as detailed in the Step as you like, but you only need the one when you create a Story. Once the Step hsa been completed, you may choose to write the next Step at any time - immediately or you can wait a bit, it's totally up to you. If a Step becomes impossible, just erase it and replace it. (You cannot, however, put in diversions that are unrelated to your Story in as Steps. Do what you're doing and stay focused on that Story, then come back to your Hero Story later.)

So, what's the stuff you get? Anything. You want to increase a Skill? That'll be a Story with Steps equal to the new rank in the skill. A new skill at 1 needs only a single Step, while improving a skill to 4 takes 4 Steps. Advantages take a number of Steps equal to their point cost. You can erase one of your Quirks and replace it with another Quirk - any existing one or one you and the GM write up - for 3 Steps. You may change your Virtue or Hubris for 4 Steps, though you can only have one Virtue and one Hubris at any time. You can shift a point in one Trait into another Trait for 4 Steps, or increase a Trait by 1 for 5 Steps. However, your total Traits can only equal 15, no more, so you can only increase Traits twice. After that, you have to shift them around to change them. Removing a point of Corruption costs five Steps.

That's most of chargen! There's just a few bits left. First, you speak Languages equal to your Wits score (assuming you don't have Linguist). Everyone has Wits 2, so everyone can start with their native language and Old Thean, which is Not Latin and is the trade tongue that almost everyone knows. Second, you may choose to join a Secret Society. There is no cost to doing so, but your Society may (and probably will) ask you to do stuff from time to time. If you choose to begin play in a Society, you begin with 2 Favor with them. You do not begin play with any Wealth by default; that doesn't mean poverty, however. It is assumed that a Hero can always afford the basic necesseties of food, shelter and clothing, as long as they are available to buy at all. Wealth is there to buy extra stuff.

How do you earn Wealth, then, besides Patron or Rich? Well, you can choose to take up a Profession. To do this, you select the skill that'd be relevant - Perform for a musician, Weaponry for a bodyguard, etc. You tell the GM what you're doing and, assuming you have the time and opportunity to work, you gain Wealth equal to that skill. Unspent Wealth is usually lost between sessions, however, unless you're trying to save up for something. In that case, the GM may allow you to bank half your Wealth between sessions, but you always lose at least half your total Wealth at the end of each session.

What can you do with Wealth? Well, you spend it. When you're in a social Risk that could be influenced by money, you can spend Wealth. Each Wealth spent lets you reroll one die. You can spend 1 Wealth to get a high quality common item - a good sword or horse, say. 3 Wealth lets you hire a Strength 5 Brute Squad to serve you for a scene. 5 Wealth lets you buy just about any piece of equipment that is not unique, even stuff not readily available or which is illegal. 8-10 Wealth is enough to get a business, house, ship or other piece of property. Obviously, if an adventure ends in you getting paid for something, you get the appropriate Wealth at the start of the next session, rather than losing it when the session ends - presumably, with the adventure, after all.

Then you mark your Death Spiral. (The game instructs us to always say 'Death Spiral' as overly dramatically as possible.) This is your HP bar. It consists of four sets of 4 Wounds and 1 Dramatic Wound, with a total of 16 Wounds and 4 Dramatic Wounds (assuming you didn't buy the Advantage that adds more). Normal Wounds are basically meaningless; Dramatic Wounds are not. When you take damage, you fill in Wounds equal to the damage taken. If you ever have to fill in a Dramatic Wound star, you take a Dramatic Wound. However, that's not always totally bad! When you have 1+ Dramatic Wounds, you get a Bonus Die to all Risks. When you have 2+, Villains get 2 Bonus Dice to any Risk rolled against you. When you have 3+, all of your 10s explode. When you have 4, you are Helpless.



Next time: How the gently caress does this system even work, anyway?

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
What's Corruption? Or have we not gotten to that yet?

PoontifexMacksimus
Feb 14, 2012

Mors Rattus posted:

7th Sea 2: Ex-Vikings

The big thing here? The conflict is gone. In 1e, tradition and innovation were essentially at civil war with each other, as the Vendel gave up the old ways in pursuit of profit. What we have here is more organic and real-feeling, as they mix old tradition with new ideas. However, the conflict between Vesten and Vendel was also an extremely vibrant one in which both sides had some good points. Here, well...it feels like they lost something. I do like New Vesten, but I feel that in losing that internal conflict, they needed to replace it with one and didn't, at least in this book. Also, rune magic isn't in this book - it's in one of the Nation books. Whoops.

Next time: Vodacce.

wiegieman posted:

The Vesten/Vendel conflict between tradition, progress, respect, and freedom was one of the more engaging parts of 7s1e.

Right, so, this kind of struggle between reformers and traditionalists makes for a great dramatic hook: it's just an extremely bad fit for early-modern Scandinavia, where no-one gave a poo poo about Vikings (if they even knew they had ever existed); runes had been quickly and completely forgotten about (apart from some extremely local peasant magic traditions); and all traces of old clan structures were completely replaced with modern bureaucracy, by and large the most centralised and efficient in Europe (at least at organising for war).

If the hook of that conflict is to be retained it would be a far better fit for Scotland, which actually had a Viking-adjacent clan society survive into the time period, while also being one of the centres for the early Enlightenment and the discovery of scientific method. For Scotland you could also play up the sheer depth of internecine conflict such a clan-based society actually produced, with many clans perfectly happy to cooperate with outside conquerors if it means they get to beat up the assholes from the next firth over. The bit from the Monastyr RPG about the country in perpetual civil war felt like a good fit (also with Scotland being one of Europe's prime source of mercenaries - imagine targe-and-sword wielding kiltmen fighting tercio pikemen in central Germany):
"Ragadans Highlanders are a people hardened by decades of bitter war against their ancestral enemies, the Ragadans Highlanders. A series of civil wars, now turned into a complex network of multigenerational vendettas, made this once rich and powerful state into a hellhole, and made its folk into some of the most dangerous people in the Dominium. Ragadaís The Highlands main export are Rancors Ė hardened mercenaries, duelists and brigands with nothing to lose."

For this version of Scotland I wouldn't go so far as to make it a "hellhole", but I would imagine two axis of conflict: the first (ideological) between traditionalists and modernists, and the second (political) between those who support the union with Avalon and those who oppose it. You would have traditionalists and modernists on both sides of the issue of union, and your social life would be defined along these axis, the only real way to escape the constant social tension and conflict being to go abroad, usually as a mercenary.

Cythereal posted:

Just call it Thule, imo.

I'd probably go with something like "Thule is a land in the midst of transition and change. Though Thule was converted by Vaticine missionaries centuries ago, much of Thule sided with the Objectionists and faith in the old ways remains undiminished in the hinterlands. Though Queen Christina Hannah has been dubbed the Leopard of the North by many for her brilliant military skill in conflicts with Sarmatia, Eisen, and the Vesten, her unconventional lifestyle has left her reign unsettled. And in the northern and eastern hinterlands of Thule where the old ways are still strong, so too are Horrors not unlike those plaguing Eisen."

So the key thing about Sweden in this time is that it is basically Prussia: a strong and centralised monarchy and a thoroughly militarised society; a country far too small and poor to make their mark on the world in any way other than constant warfare, which so far they have been successful at.

Tastes may differ, but I would not include anything about old norse paganism. Half of the countries are already crypto-pagan, so it's not an interesting differentiator, and you know, ugh, Thor, Odin, again...?

Another thing to keep in mind is the importance of religion in support Swedish expansionism: one of the reasons Gustav II Adolf has such a sainted reputation is that he had an extremely successful propaganda machine positioning him as a near-Biblical figure single-handedly saving the Reformation from its enemies. Swedish society in general was nearly theocratic in its adherence to Lutheran doctrine: each and every peasant was expected to memorise religious text and doctrine, and would be inspected on a yearly basis by the parish priest and ambulating inspectors to ensure they knew the proper tenets and could recite the required scriptures. One interesting result of this was that Swedish peasants were perhaps the most literate in Europe (though of course hardly the most open-minded). Religion was of central importance to the war effort, both for internal cohesion and external propaganda and casus belli.

Actually, there's actually no 100 % Objectionist country, right? Avalon are largely doing their own thing, and Eisen is split? To reiterate the point above, making Scandinavia the only country to wholly and successfully convert to Objectionism and define themselves by this relatively new faith and the international struggle it faces would do far more to set them apart them than making them yet another country ~were the Old Ways are still strong~.

PoontifexMacksimus fucked around with this message at 00:42 on Jun 23, 2018

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

Night10194 posted:

What's Corruption? Or have we not gotten to that yet?

Not gotten to it yet. Spoilers: it kinda sucks!

e: also, Eisen is mostly Objectionist because the Vaticine Eisen have mostly emigrated at this point. (Also, spoilers, rune magic exists for Vesten, it's just in a supplement, alongside Castille's more advanced alchemy.)

Mors Rattus fucked around with this message at 00:36 on Jun 23, 2018

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
Has there ever been a Corruption system in an RPG that genuinely improved the game? I can't think of any.

Mr. Maltose
Feb 16, 2011

The Guffless Girlverine

Night10194 posted:

Has there ever been a Corruption system in an RPG that genuinely improved the game? I can't think of any.

Polaris, but that's about it as far as I know.

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool

Toilet Rascal

Night10194 posted:

Has there ever been a Corruption system in an RPG that genuinely improved the game? I can't think of any.

Urban Shadows

PoontifexMacksimus
Feb 14, 2012

If you absolutely have to have Vikings in your pirate game, now that we actually have other continents, just make them a lost colony somewhere between not-Greenland and not-Canada.

Say they successfully managed to peacefully intermarry with locals and you get some cool opportunities for a joint Native American/Viking hybrid culture and culture clashes when modern Thťans come roaming about.

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Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

NoWayToTheOldWay posted:

So the key thing about Sweden in this time is that it is basically Prussia: a strong and centralised monarchy and a thoroughly militarised society; a country far too small and poor to make their mark on the world in any way other than constant warfare, which so far they have been successful at.

Tastes may differ, but I would not include anything about old norse paganism. Half of the countries are already crypto-pagan, so it's not an interesting differentiator, and you know, ugh, Thor, Odin, again...?

Another thing to keep in mind is the importance of religion in support Swedish expansionism: one of the reasons Gustav II Adolf has such a sainted reputation is that he had an extremely successful propaganda machine positioning him as a near-Biblical figure single-handedly saving the Reformation from its enemies. Swedish society in general was nearly theocratic in its adherence to Lutheran doctrine: each and every peasant was expected to memorise religious text and doctrine, and would be inspected on a yearly basis by the parish priest and ambulating inspectors to ensure they knew the proper tenets and could recite the required scriptures. One interesting result of this was that Swedish peasants were perhaps the most literate in Europe (though of course hardly the most open-minded). Religion was of central importance to the war effort, both for internal cohesion and external propaganda and casus belli.

Actually, there's actually no 100 % Objectionist country, right? Avalon are largely doing their own thing, and Eisen is split? To reiterate the point above, making Scandinavia the only country to wholly and successfully convert to Objectionism and define themselves by this relatively new faith and the international struggle it faces would do far more to set them apart them than making them yet another country ~were the Old Ways are still strong~.

Fair enough, you clearly know much more about Swedish history and culture than I do, and I bow to your greater knowledge.

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