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Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

oriongates posted:

The entropomancer was one of the best examples of gameplay and character integration, because it's addiction to taking risks or pulling stupid stunts can so easily become the player's. It's probably one of the most immersive adept styles since the players have just enough distance from the actual real-life of the character to find insane, life or death stunts tempting and the promise of a reward for just one more risk is very, very tempting. Play russian roulette, get a significant charge...all you have to do for a second significant charge is to spin that gun again and take another chance...you'll probably win.

It's one of the most seductively self-destructive adepts out there.

I'm reminded of the opening fiction in one of the books where the guy trying to get away from the New Inquisition played Russian roulette... with his mentor. (His mentor told him to.) I think that was worth a major charge.

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oriongates
Mar 14, 2013

Validate Me!


And just think about that temptation...you can do a lot with a major charge. And there's like a 83% chance it'll all be okay. Just one more spin and not only can you get away, you can make sure those TNI bastards get what's coming to them. It's almost a sure thing, you just have to BLAM!


poo poo

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Rifts World Book 17: Warlords of Russia, Part 7: "Rather than a full modulator, this gizmo makes the cyborg's voice deeper, and a bit gravelly to give it a menacing, animalistic quality."

Russian Bionics

So, cyborgs are more common in Russia as previously established, even though vehicles and power armor are rare. This is because.... HEY! LOOK OVER THERE!... and so it makes sense. Mmmmhm. Oh, did you miss my reason? I'm sure I mentioned it. In any case, they're more accepted than they are in America, being common tools of the Warlords. The Warlords generally claim cybernetic facilities and stomp out any independent bionic merchants, though sometimes cybernetic businesses in the larger cities operate under their authority. There are still "illegals" who operate shady chop-shops and the like, though. Bionics that the warlords grant to their troops are generally considered to be their permanent possession, so you can retire with all of your missiles and plasma leg rods intact. Still, some sell off their own cybernetics for sweet, sweet profit and boat drinks, baby.

Every Warlord has possession of a cybernetics factory, but they also import a lot (particularly parts for fusion reactors). Some are so sophisticated they have robot facilities that can Ghost in the Shell up people in a jiffy. They're some of the best in the world when it comes to bionics, but none of that translates to other forms of technology because... HEY! WHAT IS THAT?!... which is a pretty good explanation that's easy to miss.

Russian Cybernetic Systems

As a reminder, Rifts qualifies implants that don't enhance part of the body as cybernetic for the most part, but the line is blurry. So a replacement arm that is just a replacement is cybernetic. But a replacement arm that has superhuman strength and a diamond drill is bionic. But it's not perfectly clear. There are two main systems detailed in this part, Cyberlink Vehicle Interfacing and Weapon to Cyborg Energy Link.

The Cyberlink Vehicle Interface is what most sci-fi fans would expect, a direct link from your brains to vehicle. This gives an instant readout on the vehicle, but also gives you complete control over it. Unfortunately, it locks you out of doing anything else, and can only be used on comparatively small vehicles like cars or cycles because - LOOK, CHECK THAT OUT! - which really clears things up. It gives some solid bonuses, and adds extra speed based on your Intelligence. Yes, the smarter you are, the faster car go.

The Weapon to Cyborg Energy Link lets cyborgs (why is this "cybernetics" if only cyborgs can use it...?). It lets you do away with pesky e-clips and just charge energy weapons from your fusion reactor (if you have one), but it can be easily destroyed, reduces your speed, and gives greater penalties if used for more than 10 minutes due to the power drain.

Notable Bionic Features Common to Warlord Cyborgs

There's a lot here, so I'm not going to list it all. Robot Strength lets you boost strength further, but the utility is limited because robot strength is inferior to supernatural strength because, OH MY GOD, WHAT IS THAT?! I had wondered what the reason was, but there you have it. It all fits perfectly. A lot of cyborgs have Interchangeable Parts for total toyeticness.

There are a lot of new eye types, but the Panorama Cluster Lens takes the cake, an series of eyes that let you see in all directions. It gives you bonuses against surprise, defense bonuses, bonuses on skills to detect shenanigans, and... a trick shooting skill? However, it penalizes your Beauty (which already starts too low to get any bonuses, so it's not actually a penalty) and drives you to gain Phobias, since being able to see in all directions makes you... more... paranoid? Well, it makes more sense when AHHHH CHECK IT OUT MAN- so I'm glad they explained that!

The Low-Frequency (earthquake) Audio Rig lets you put your ear-sensor to the ground and detect vibrations like some questionable western genre trope. Only more cyber. Of course, with a range of 1-3 miles for most normal troops, by the time you can hear people, you're probably within weapon range. Definitely within missile range.

A Gromeko Friend or Foe Identification Computer has files on a variety of cyborgs, monsters, and demons, and can identify them and provide facts or schematics. It also gives their power level between 1 and 10, but a flashing 10 means it's off the scale. So you can be like "It's over 10!" and then crush your own head. It'd be suicide, but the meme commanded you. You had no choice.

There's a lot for body options I could cover, like a jet pack or tank treads (finally, you can play Eliminators in Rifts). But what I'll focus on here is the Head Collar & Hood, so you can have an armored cyber-hoodie, which protects your head to the tune of 42 M.D.C. More importantly, it's a cyber-hoodie.

We get a lot of new weapons, most of which are just variations on range and damage values. The Electro-Cannon Forearm Blaster shoots electro that will fry S.D.C. electronics... you know, the kind that will explode automatically if you shoot them anyway. Hydraulic Hammer Hands and Hydraulic Ram Arms give flat percentages chances to knock human and "small vehicles" over, for aspiring pusher robots. The "Mekanikal" line of weapon arms is designed so you can swap out any Mekanikal arm for another one, which would be a neat notion if most of them weren't total garbage (a rail gun that does 4d6 Mega-Damage is a good example of failure in weapons design). But there's a Mekanikal tentacle arm so you can cyber-grab stuff like a 90's X-Men baddie.

Russian Bionics

So, we get a lot of :words: that reiterate things we already know. Did you know that the Warlords use cyborgs? Did you know that cybernetics are more accepted in Russia? Did you know that Russian cybernetics is pretty advanced and commonplace? Oh, we've mentioned all that? Well, we will again and again, you can't fill up 224 pages with merely useful information.

One of the weirder parts that I find is the notion that the Warlords or underground organizations will give you a permanent cybernetic body for a decade or two of service, then just let you go. The cost of some of these bodies can run in the 3-5 million credit range. That's like earning a $250,000+ salary on zero requirements other than the willingness to become a badass cyborg. And like the original (cy)Borg class, there are "suggested" attributes, but no requirements - meaning anybody can qualify as a cyborg. Yes, it's easier to qualify as a cyborg than to be a peon reaver. "We don't think you really have what it takes to be a bullet-catching rifle-carrier, have you considered becoming a walking talk instead?"

In any case, we get three new cyborg classes: Light Machine, Heavy Machine, and Cyborg Shocktrooper, all of which are full conversion cyborgs - i.e. only a few essential organs remain of the original human. While we get some new packages for partial cyborgs - a "55%" conversion package and a "70-80%" conversion package, the game rightly presumes that most players will want to play full 95-98% conversion cyborgs. Unlike the corebook cyborg, what you get is largely fixed as part of a standardized package, and you only get a few choices or weapon or limb features as opposed to the "make your own cyborg" package found in the corebook. We do get a footnote amongst them that you can load chemical sprayers with holy water now, for those who want to give vampires a bit of a surprise.


"I didn't kill that guy. He just fell over when I stabbed- poo poo."

The only real advantage to playing a human-sized Light Machine is that you can still conceivably pass for human if you decide to have synthetic skin over your robobod. They're supposed to be the more social cyborgs, but there's not much support mechanically for that. Of course, they also forgot to include any price or details for synthetic skin, so you'll have to go hat-in-hand to the GM about that. They get a military-grunt style skill package with slightly better skill percentages than the corebook, and are flatly the weakest of the cyborg packages. You get a gunfighting trick shot, however, since this book seems to hand that mechanic out like an after-dinner mint for every other class. Rifts likes to give an obviously weaker option one unique but hardly balancing edge, pat itself on the back, and say "Yep, that's how you provide meaningful options!"


Terminator went weightlifting: the Rifts cyborg aesthetic.

Heavy Machines are 8-12 feet buff cyborgs that are flatly made for combat, which is backed up by them getting weapon proficiencies for pretty much whatever they like (including, once again, a trick shot). It goes on about how proud they are of how badass they are, and see themselves as big Russian heroes, though a tiny minority become maladjusted. In any case, they get more M.D.C. than Light Machines, more weapons, and no real drawbacks other than being completely obvious... and not being cyborg shocktroopers. Also, girl cyborgs often have hair or hair-wires or whatever. Gender coding is a necessity for giant cyborgs, you wouldn't want to be confused about what gender a cyborg was before their bionification. :rolleyes:

Randomly, we get a note that the Warlords keep a tight lid on cybernetic technology because they're worried about alien and D-Bee infiltrators using cyborg bodies, and occasionally DNA test any suspect cyborgs. A relevant note!... that probably should have been somewhere other than the middle of an O.C.C. writeup.

In any case, those aren't the biggest cyborgs we get. We can get bigger. Stronger. More filled with redundant armaments. :clint:

Next: Russian Army Alien Tech Terminator Robots Cyborgs To Crush US Military. Don't Believe? Watch This.

Alien Rope Burn fucked around with this message at 23:08 on Aug 15, 2018

Hattie Masters
Aug 29, 2012

COMICS CRIMINAL
Grimey Drawer

Mors Rattus posted:

I think having a group that represents the Coptic and Miaphysite Christians in the same way the Vaticine is Catholics is important, and having the Anashid take the place of the Nizari Ismaili is...a choice, certainly, and not a terrible one. Having Assassins fits because Alamut was a real place that had real Nizari fanatics trained to lie or kill to defend the Ismaili. I even like the religions represented in Ashur and I love the Orthodox doctrine and the take on Jesus they went with.

But how the Assassins themselves got put together and their magic laser powers, well, that could have been done better.

I have no issue with the basic idea. The metaphor works. It's just that once you get any deeper, at all, the whole thing gets real stupid (in my opinion).

Assassins? Good. Assassins that protect a religious minority? Also good. Assassins that protect a religious minority, who have laser powers and are commanded by an immortal boy sage? Nope, nope you done hosed it all up.

If we go near the region in my game, which is mostly set in Eisen so it's not overly likely, I'd fix Ashur the same way I'd fix Assassins Creed: Assassins are a political and social class, and nothing else. They don't experience a thousand deaths, they just train to murder. They don't have an immortal leader who leads to religious implications, they just have a dude. Or a lady. I really, really like the rest of Crescent Empire, but you just have this big shiny "This should be in Forgotten Realms" problem. At least, in my opinion.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

After a Speaker vote, you may be entitled to a valuable coupon or voucher!



What's wrong with the laser powers though?

Foglet
Jun 17, 2014

Reality is an illusion.
The universe is a hologram.
Buy gold.

Nessus posted:

What's wrong with the laser powers though?
Wonder if they can be redirected via Porte.

Mr. Maltose
Feb 16, 2011

The Guffless Girlverine
Yeah, I don’t see “assassins that control light” as anything more beyond the pale then “musketeers that rip bleeding holes into unreality”.

Hattie Masters
Aug 29, 2012

COMICS CRIMINAL
Grimey Drawer

Mr. Maltose posted:

Yeah, I don’t see “assassins that control light” as anything more beyond the pale then “musketeers that rip bleeding holes into unreality”.

My issue is mostly with scale, and the fluff that surrounds it. Porté can rip a bleeding hole in reality but you need to do damage to yourself to use it, and you can maybe take your group through it. The Lasers get the Low Orbit Ion Cannon. Sure you can use it only once a story, but thats still more than your Porté can do to level a city block. The closest you get is the Samartian devil dealers, and they have the counterbalance of "Sure, you can ask for the big thing, but it will 100% definitely gently caress you over in the long run." This has no such restriction or counter balance. Take away the third tier, and change the fluff that I hate, and Ashur is fine. But the Man in the Mountain is so baked into the country that you'd have to rework a lot of it.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!

Hattie Masters posted:

My issue is mostly with scale, and the fluff that surrounds it. Porté can rip a bleeding hole in reality but you need to do damage to yourself to use it, and you can maybe take your group through it. The Lasers get the Low Orbit Ion Cannon. Sure you can use it only once a story, but thats still more than your Porté can do to level a city block. The closest you get is the Samartian devil dealers, and they have the counterbalance of "Sure, you can ask for the big thing, but it will 100% definitely gently caress you over in the long run." This has no such restriction or counter balance. Take away the third tier, and change the fluff that I hate, and Ashur is fine. But the Man in the Mountain is so baked into the country that you'd have to rework a lot of it.

Just get WVR of Rourke/Le Empereur and BOOM.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

7th Sea 2: The Crescent Empire - War! What Is It Good For

First we get a brief GM advice chapter. It's a mixed bag; its discussion of the themes of the Crescent Empire nations is good, as is its discussion on how to make the fact that the Crescents are by and large more superstitious, more often have a mystical bent and tend to be more likely to report crimes important and useful to your game is pretty good. Its emphasis on villains wielding the rules of hospitality and social expectation against PCs is somewhat annoying, though, especially for players who don't actually internalize all those rules. It does, thankfully, end with a note that the GM should remember that people are still likely to make allowances for heroes - the cops who arrest you for chasing a dude across rooftops are going to toss you in a cell, hang the key on a nearby hook and very conspicuously go out for lunch for two hours with their mother after announcing loudly that they really hope no one touches that key, because if someone got out, nothing could be done, if you've been doing heroism, for example, and your best friend's wife's cousin, the local bey, is gonna let you off the hook for publically loving up a villain if it's clear they deserved it. Which makes the discussion of how villains will often try to trap you with the laws of etiquette even weirder, really. But I will admit, the Crescent politics are a thing I like and find interesting, so it's all relative.

Mass combat! This is a system designed to handle skirmishes of any size, from small engagements to massive national wars. To start any mass combat encounter, you do two things - determine the scope and pick Generals. Battle scope falls into one of four categories. Small Scale battles define units as being up to 10 soldiers, with each point of Strength representing 1 person. (Note: Units cannot go above Strength 10.) Medium Scale battles define units as up to 100 soldiers, with each point of Strength representing about 10 soldiers. Large Scale battles define units as up to 1000 soldiers, with each point of Strength representing around 100 soldiers. Massive Scale battles define units as up to 10,000 soldiers, with each point of Strength representation around 1000 soldiers. You can keep going in factors of ten but what the hell kind of battles are you running? The side with the fewest number of troops determines the scale used - if one side has 500 and the other has 2000, you're using Medium Scale, with one side having 5 Strength 10 units and the other have 20.

Each side needs a Hero or Villain to serve as the General. The General serves as the overall leader of the force and makes many of the choices involved in the battle. They determine how many actions their army can take in a Round, and they give orders to the various units. However, other PCs (or Villains) who are not the General can still participate, and at any point the General may choose to step down and give command to another character. Without a General, a side loses, period.

At the start of each round of Mass Combat, the General of each force makes a Risk to determine Raises. Most often this will be Wits or Panache plus Warfare, depending on whether one's leadership is tactical or inspirational, respectively, but the GM may allow other pools at their discretion. Each General can then spend Raises to order various Strategies. A given Strategy costs one Raise to order as an action, and each action can be used to order only one Strategy. If the General chooses to take an action other than ordering a Strategy, they can use multiple Raises as normal. The same Strategy cannot be used by the same army twice in a row in the same round. If you order a Clash, your next order must be something other than a Clash. You can use strategies more than once per round, you just need to not do it twice in a row - so Clash, Fall Back, Clash is fine. Last, a single unit may only be ordered to act once per round, unless every other unit in the army has been given an order already. If you have 5 Raises and 4 units, you have to order each unit once, and your fifth order can then be to any of them to do a second thing.

Every unit has a Strength rating. When it runs out, that unit is defeated. Every Hit in Mass Combat reduces Strength by 1. This is a big deal, because Strength is also the main dicepool used for units to do things. Further, if a unit takes more than half their Strength in Hits (rounding up) in a single action, they must test for Morale. To test Morale, you roll Strength, plus a relevant skill if the unit has a PC attached to it as a leader - usually Warfare or Convince, but not always. If they get even one Raise, the unit remains on the field. If they do not, the unit flees and is removed from battle. If a PC was attached to it, they may choose to spend a Hero Point and become a Solo rather than flee with the unit. More on PCs that aren't the General shortly.

Strategies
Clash: You order a unit to attack an enemy unit directly. They roll (Strength), dealing Hits equal to the number of Raises rolled.
Combined Arms: You order the unit to soften the enemy up with ranged fire, so an ally can charge. They deal 1 Hit, then roll (Strength). The next time their target is damaged this round, the target takes (Raises) extra Hits.
Fall Back: You must use this immediately after an action causes Hits to a unit. That unit rolls (Strength), preventing (Raises) of those Hits.
Flank: You order a unit to go for a finishing charge. They roll (Strength), and you spend all remaining Raises. They deal (Raises rolled+Raises spent) Hits to the target unit.
Ready...Aim...Fire!: You order the unit to go for ranged attacks to harry the foe. That unit deals 1 Hit, then rolls (Strength). The next time their target damages a unit, they deal (Raises) fewer Hits.

Now, other PCs! Any other PC must select whether they will be attached to a unit or fight as a Solo. If they are attached to a unit, they serve as its leader and improve its abilities. Any time the unit would roll Strength, the PC makes the roll and adds a relevant Skill to the pool, often Weaponry or Warfare but not always. While a PC is attached to a unit, they receive no damage from enemy attacks unless specifically targeted. Even if they are part of a Strength 1 unit that takes multiple Hits, they do not get any of the spillover damage. Further, the PC may overrule orders from the General. The General still gives an Order, but the PC may choose to ignore it and replace it with another Order of their choice, for any reason they like. They are bound by the same rules, though - they cannot use the same Strategy as the one used in the General's last Order, even if it was to another unit. A PC attached to a unit may spend a Hero Point to leave the unit and become a Solo.

A Solo PC is fighting alone. Solo PCs roll to gather Raises at the start of each round, as in normal combat. However, they lose any Raises that would place them in excess of their General's Raises. They may perform normal attacks against enemy units, as if in normal combat. They are not subject to receiving Orders from the General, and so can take a more active role, performing multiple actions in combat. However, they are also at greater risk, as they can be wounded, especially if multiple units focus in on them. (Despite it being mass combat, Wounds and Hits are treated as being identical in scale.) At any time at the start of a round, a Solo PC may spend a Hero Point to attach themselves to unit.

Actions are taken in order of who has the most Raises at any time, as in normal Sequences. However, if one side surprises the other, such as with a night raid or ambush, the enemy General rolls 2 fewer dice to determine Raises on the first round. Surprise only applies in the first round. Also, when a force is outnumbered by two to one (or worse), the smaller army gets the Underdog Bonus. Once per battle, a General with the Underdog Bonus may announce they are using it before rolling for Raises that round. On that roll, 10s explode and the General may make sets of 15 rather than 10, with each set of 15 counting as 2 Raises.

Some units are better than others, though, in ways different than just having more raw numbers. This is represented by Edges, and not every unit has one. The General may purchase Edges for their side by spending Hero Points. The first Edge for a given unit costs 1 Hero Point. The second Edge for that same unit costs 3, the third 6, the fourth 10, and so on. A unit can, in theory, have any number of Edges if you spend enough Hero Points, and the rising costs are for each unit individually. So if you have 5 units, you can spend 5 Hero Points to give them each a single Edge. If a Hero begins the battle attached to a unit, they may spend Hero Points to give that unit Edges at the same rate; the General may not buy Raises for that unit. The GM may also give out free Edges based on the fiction - if you have gone out of your way, say, to help the Sarmion royal family and they send you a unit of Chavra, it probably gets the Chavra Warriors Edge for free. If you are, for some reason, doing an ongoing military campaign, your units can also acquire permanent Edges through experience, based on how many battles the unit survives. After one battle, they get a single Edge. 3 battles after that, they get a second. 6 battles after that, a third. And so on.

Edges
Assassin: Ashurite units only. In the first round, if your army surprised the foe, 10s explode on all Strategies this unit performs.
Camel Cavalry: 8th Sea units only. The General may spend a Hero Point to make this unit's 10s explode as long as they fight alongside at least one other unit that has this Edge.
Castillian Black Powder: When this unit performs Ready...Aim...Fire!, their 10s explode.
Cavalry: When this unit performs Clash, their 10s explode.
Chavra Warriors: Sarmion units only. The first time this battle that this unit would take Hits, it takes 2 fewer Hits, to a minimum of 1.
Duelist: Any time this unit causes Hits, increase the Hits caused by 1.
Elephant Cavalry: Persic units only. When this unit performs Clash, the targeted unit must immediately make a Morale test.
Elite: Before all other units in this unit's army act, this unit can take a free action.
Guardian: When a character attached to this unit would take Wounds, the unit may take the damage as Hits instead.
Intimidating: When this unit causes an enemy unit to test Morale, the enemy automatically fails.
Janissaries: Anatoli units only. This unit ignores Morale tests and will fight to the death unless specifically ordered to retreat.
Medics: At the end of each round, this unit heals half the Hits it took that round.
Shield Wall: When this unit would take Hits, reduce the Hits taken by 1, to a minimum of 1.
Support Squad: When this unit performs Combined Arms, their 10s explode.
Unbreakable: This unit never has to test for Morale and never flees due to casualties. (Wait, isn't that supposed to be the Jannisaries' bonus?)
Wary: When this unit performs Fall Back, their 10s explode.

Next time: RAP BATTLE

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
So, ugh, barring ION CANNON, how many soldiers can a PC slaughter in a round if 1 Strength is 10 dudes?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

JcDent posted:

So, ugh, barring ION CANNON, how many soldiers can a PC slaughter in a round if 1 Strength is 10 dudes?

A lot, if they're a duelist or otherwise able to throw out lots of damage in a single round of combat.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!

Mors Rattus posted:

A lot, if they're a duelist or otherwise able to throw out lots of damage in a single round of combat.

Suddenly, this turns into one of those mass slaughter games based on Romance of Three Kingdoms.

Foglet
Jun 17, 2014

Reality is an illusion.
The universe is a hologram.
Buy gold.

JcDent posted:

Suddenly, this turns into one of those mass slaughter games based on Romance of Three Kingdoms.
It's not historical unless you do it with three katanas in each hand while riding a horse-shaped motorcycle.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Rifts World Book 17: Warlords of Russia, Part 8: "In this combat and machine oriented society, the biggest, strongest, bravest warriors are the most revered and the Shocktroopers are without dispute, the biggest and strongest."


This is the Cyborg Shocktrooper art. No Cyborg Shocktrooper looks like this.

And finally, we have the main focus of this book: Cyborg Shocktroopers. These are the eliteiest of the cyborgs that serve the Warlords, and different from Heavy Machines in that they have special custom designs, unique to the Warlord they serve. They're supposed to be brave and loyal, and most of them stick by their Warlords for life because they do, but people treat them well and apparently that helps them shrug off any mental disconnect they might have form more inhuman bodies. They get officer-styled training, and-

Rifts World Book 17: Warlords of Russia posted:

Boxing (don't forget about the extra attack this provides).

Trust me, that is not something any Palladium fan forgets. Everybody boxes in Palladium games unless their class explicitly forbids it. One issue from earlier custom cyborgs (like those in Rifts World Book 7: Japan) was their inability to wear armor, making them weaker than corebook cyborgs due to massively lower M.D.C. totals. However, these cyborgs can wear armor, fixing that issue. They also gain unique combat bonuses for each model, a big part of what makes them flatly better than Heavy Machines.

Something that's really bugging me, though, as I read through these, is the tendency for Siembieda to add weapons that aren't in the art. Often these are completely pointless - concealed lasers that do so little damage that you wouldn't want to use them over a pistol, much less a rail gun - but this time I'm going to document them all under "Gratuitous Guns".


"Everyone! Initiate formation: copy-paste!"

The signature cyborg for Warlord Alekseyevna, the old semi-retired racist, is the Tempest. It may be based on plans for the SAMAS power armor from the corebook, and by this point there have been so many SAMAS knock-offs in books I can't be bothered to count them call. Here's another, except it's a cyborg. It has a plasma gun that's no better than the plasma rifles anybody can carry, and can breathe fire for negligible damage. Oddly, it's actually slower than a cyborg with a jetpack (240 MPH as opposed to 250 MPH) but can fly for much longer periods of time.

Gratuitious Guns: Laser Beam Eyes, Concealed Forearm Laser, and Mini-Missile Shoulder Launchers ("under armored plates").


The real problem with the Perez cyborg designs is that it's not all Perez cyborg designs. Sorry, Scotty.

The Butcher is one of the two signature cyborgs for Warlord Burgasov, the "The Bear of Moskva". The only really exceptional thing about it is a hood that protects its head from getting shot in the back. It has cool swords (but the usual weak damage) and mini-missiles.

Gratuitous Guns: High-Powered Laser ("disguised as one of the mini-missile launchers") and a W-42 Concealed Palm Laser.


Rifts, where three small saw blades > one large saw blade.

The Ripper is Burgasov's other key cyborg, mainly notable for the highly damaging triple saw-blade arm. Other than that, we've got-

Gratuitous Guns: Mini-Missile Back Launch Tubes (conveniently out of frame), Mini-Missile Chest Launch Tubes ("chest plates open"), Cheek Lasers (seriously?), Chemical Spray (from the mouth), and Concealed Laser Rod (in left leg).


With tentacles, just like tigers you'd find in the wild.

Warlord Kolodenko is the "noble" Warlord, and his specialty cyborg is the White Tiger. Its key system are "electro-tentacles" that wan whip for weak damage, but have a chance to stun targets based on their type (92% for an unarmored humanoid, down to 5% for an adult dragon or other shocktrooper). Well, it's a unique gimmick, at least.

Gratuitous Guns: Mini-Missile Chest Launch Tubes ("chest plates open", again), Chemical Spray (mouth, again), Concealed Hip Plasma Ejector, and Concealed Hip Laser Rod.


Its archenemy: stairs.

There are two cyborgs for the dad-murdering villain, Warlord Orloff. The first is the Holocaust. Classy name, Orloff. Now, I don't talk about hit locations often, but this one has listed:

Rifts World Book 17: Warlords of Russia posted:

* Helmet Horns (2) — 15 each

Rifts World Book 17: Warlords of Russia posted:

* A single asterisk indicates a small and/or difficult target to hit. The attacker must make a "Called Shot" and even then he is -3 to strike.

"So, what if I get lucky, do some sharp shooting, and blow off the horns?", you may ask. "What happens?" Well, maybe its headbutt damage is reduced. Maybe. It doesn't say. Even so, its headbutt does the same as its punch. So if you shoot off both its arms, and you shoot off all its guns, and you shoot of its missiles, maybe it'd be worth shooting off the head horns. Maybe. In any case, it has mini-missile launchers (actually pictured!), a plasma cannon, a forearm pulse laser, forearm particle beam gun, and the novel tread locomotion. Also, "like their master", these cyborgs tend to be assholes because they have bad cyborg culture. True story.

Gratuitous Guns: Shoulder Rail Gun (what is obviously an exhaust pipe is actually a rail gun in a non-firing position?).


Great art, bad numbers.

Orloff's other pet cyborg design is the Aftermath. Its big deal is the surprisingly low-damage chainsaw arm. It gave up a whole arm for that, cut it it a break, Kev! It also has a particle beam gun and a rail gun.

Gratuitous Guns: Vibro-Blade Arm (the little bayonet below the chainsaw is pictured, but it supposedly has a retractable arm the pops out to use it slash at people - yes, really), Mini-Missiles (supposedly the chainsaw motor is actually a missile launcher), and a Concealed Vibro Blade (because it doesn't have enough blades already).


The art / numbers disconnect here is particularly fierce.

Warlord Romanov of the magic plot dagger commands the Avenging Angel model. It's a flyer that goes faster than the Tempest at 340 MPH, and gets bonuses to sneaking and gliding silently. It's a very sneaky 1.2 tons. Its vibro-scythe and vibro-talons are really no better than most normal vibro-weapons, sadly, so if you're hoping it to slice through gargoyles like the illustration, that ain't happening. It's the lightest of the shocktroopers because it was made for a girrrl, I suppose.

Gratuitous Guns: Wing Mini-Missiles (not in the illustration, can supposedly be attached), Concealed Forearm Lasters, and Clawed Hands (claws not pictured).


"I couldn't decide which kind of blade I wanted, so..."

Given he's the sneaky spy Warlord, Serijev has the Assassin, which he claims is more of a spy or commando than an assassin. But he called it the Assassin, so take that for what it's worth. Designed to be quiet and sneaky, it's got four arms with claws and vibro-blades and is really just super, super nineties. It also gets a special anti-psionic system that's "extremely rare" which... gives it +1 versus psionics and magic. Yep. Good enough for government Warlord work, I suppose.

Gratuitous Guns: "Forearm particle beam gun" and "Shooting, explosive knuckle spikes". I'll give it a pass on the garrote wrist, drugged needles, etc., based on the design. But I don't see any gun arm or knuckle spikes, nope.


"Opening doors? Not a problem. Uh, you don't need to still have a door afterwards, right?"

Serijev also has the Mantis, but the vibro-blades aren't anything special despite their impressive size. It's almost a copy-paste of the Assassin, complete wih ineffectual anti-psionic bafflers, only minus most of the weapons and plus two suprisingly dinky blade arms.

Gratuitous Guns: None. Not even mantis laser eyes. Amazing.


Sometimes several dozen spikes just isn't enough.

The Demonfist is the product of the generally miserable and cruel Warlord Sokolov. It's supposed to look like a demon!... actually, it looks like it stripped some carapace off of some monster and hot-glued their spikes on, which would have been cooler than the fact that it's supposed to look like a demon so they just added chunky spiky bits to the design. It has shoulder plasma guns, wolverine vibro-claws, and forearm lasers. You'll only ever use the plasma guns, though.

Gratuitous Guns: Concealed Ion Rod (in the leg), two different Chemical Sprays in the hands, a Silver Palm Needle, Laser Finger, another Laser Finger, and a Garrote Wire (because you'd never see it coming, I'm sure).

And that's all. It's hard to say much- since they're cyborgs, most of them are just variations are on the basic cyborg statistics with some added combat bonuses and sometimes - sometimes - a unique weapon or system. Some of the art - particularly Perez's - is hideously underserved by the text. But that's it for cyborgs.

until the next cyborg section ahahaha aha didn't think we were done with cyborgs did you ahewhreahahaahaha

Next: Not enough weapons on your vehicle's art? Siembieda's got you covered.

Alien Rope Burn fucked around with this message at 16:36 on Aug 16, 2018

Quinn2win
Nov 9, 2011

Foolish child of man...
After reading all this,
do you still not understand?


Panic at the Dojo: Trouble

Continuing with the non-combat rules! we left off with Debut scenes, so now the party is all gathered. They fight some bad guys, then learn about the evil plot they have to uncover. It's time to find and stop the villain! Except it isn't, because before you can reach the next fight, you have to go through some Trouble. Trouble is any problem you can't solve by fighting it. A car swerving out of lane to ram you. The phone lines are jammed and you need to get a message out to someone. Bad things are happening and they aren't punchable.

Between fights there should generally be a number of Troubles equal to the number of PCs. If you have an especially complex Trouble, it might count as two Troubles. The GM presents each Trouble one by one as they occur, and it's up to the party to solve it using their Skills. For each Trouble, one party member needs to step up and use one of their Skills to resolve it - however, each Hero can only step up once per Troubles scene. In other words, if you have five Troubles, every party member is going to end up dealing with one of them. This means that one person can't commandeer a scene entirely, but it also means that as the Troubles continue, you have less and less PCs available to solve them. The first couple Troubles will generally be easy to solve, but they get harder as your pool of available Skills shrinks, so the PCs have to carefully pick who will deal with the early Troubles in order to still have useful Skills available for the late ones.

If you don't have anyone with a Skill that can be justified as solving a Trouble, you fail spectacularly, but again, you'll still eventually get to the end even if you fail every one. The motivation to succeed at Troubles is that failures affect the next fight. If all Troubles pass, the GM places enemies first, then the party can enter the fight anywhere they want as they get the jump on the bad guys. If there was one failure, the fight unfolds as normal. If there were two or more failures, the PCs all place themselves, then the villains are placed anywhere they want afterwards.

Contests
Sometimes a Trouble isn't just a Trouble - it's a direct non-combat challenge against a villain. You're racing to get somewhere before a bad guy does, or you're trying to sneak past an enemy force without being noticed. These are still Troubles, but they're a bit more complex - in addition to a success or a failure in a Contest, you can get a tie.

If you fail a Contest, then you lose what you were contesting, and the villain gets it. If you can't accept that outcome, the only thing to do is to skip past the rest of the Troubles and force a fight on the spot. If you do that, then you get into an ambush, just as if you had failed multiple Troubles.

If you get a tie in a Contest, you have to fight. Skip to the end of the Troubles and engage in an even battle, same as failing one Trouble.

If you succeed in a Contest, you have three options:
  • You can get what you want, meaning that you won the contest. You get what you were contesting over - you made it there first, you snuck past the guards, et cetera. This just counts the Contest as a successful Trouble and moves on.
  • You can skip the next fight if you were using a Contest to avoid a fight. This means you skip over the next combat scene and move forward in the story without fighting - you now have a new objective, and your Troubles reset for a new chain.
  • You can pick a fight with advantage, giving yourself a Bonus or one enemy a Penalty.

So that's a lot of words about what Contests do, but how do they resolve? That depends on the type of enemy. There are three enemy types in PatD: Stooges, Warriors, and Bosses. These apply not only to combat but also to Contests, and your win or loss is determined by whether or not you have an applicable Skill and whether or not they have an applicable Skill.

Stooges don't have any Skills, so they're easy pickings. If you have an appropriate Skill for the circumstances, you win the Contest. If you don't have a Skill, it's a tie, and you fight them.

Warriors get one Skill apiece, so unlike Stooges, they can be skilled. If you have a Skill and they don't, you win. If they have a Skill and you don't, you lose. If you both have a Skill, it's a tie.

Bosses are bad news, and are almost unbeatable even outside of the ring. A Boss gets multiple Skills, some even having more than heroes. If you have a Skill and the Boss has no Skill, the Contest ends in a tie. If the Boss has a Skill, the Boss wins, whether or not you have one. A Boss with an applicable Skill can't be beaten by anyone. That is, unless you use...

Teamwork
If you really need to secure a win in a Contest, you can work together on it! If two Skilled Heroes work together on a Contest, they add one step to the result - a loss becomes a tie, a tie becomes a win. If three Skilled Heroes work together, they add two steps, turning a loss straight into a win. The drawback is that this means that you now have less available heroes than you have remaining Troubles, so you're bound to fail at least one.

It would be easy if that was all that was going on, but villains can use teamwork, too. When this happens, you give each side a point value. Each Skilled Hero is worth a point, each Skilled Warrior is worth a point. A Boss is worth one point, or two if they're Skilled. Unskilled Heroes, unskilled warriors, and stooges are worth zero points. Whichever side has more points wins the Contest, or they tie if the scores are equal.



Next up: Putting it all together for chargen.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

Confession - when the Russia book first came out and I was in my teens, I thought the White Tiger cyborg was really cool.

Now it all just kind of sits on my head and bounces up and down.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

7th Sea 2: The Crescent Empire - Your Poetry Is Weak

The Crescent Empire takes honor and reputation extremely seriously. Ruining someone's reputation can be worse than killing them, because it splashes onto their family, too. Therefore, Kavita, poetry dueling, is one of the deadliest arts there is. Kavita is, in theory, invoked when two people hate each other so much that even a physical duel will not satisfy. (Competitive and friendly duels are relatively recent.) The two must stand before a judge and audience, only a few steps apart, and create a poem together. Kavitas have three Bayts (roughly, 'verses') and generally have only seconds between the two poets speaking their poems. The winner gains prestige and honor, and the loser is shamed by defeat. Some Kavita duels also include the loser suffering major loss of status or reputation, or even agreeing to a period of indentured servitude. The stakes are set before the Kavita itself, and duelists select the topic beforehand.

In the modern Crescent, three poetic themes are considered to be of acceptable use in civilized company. First is mutakarib, heroic poetry. These are tales of epic deeds and stories, of all kinds, including those from outside the Empire. You can even receite mutakarib poems about yourself, if you specialize in bragging or self promotion. Ramal is poetry in the form of religious parables and educational topics. It was favored by the famous Great Poet Damu, and many poems use fragments of his verses, along with lines from religious texts. Poems about the self in this tradition are about self-discovery and one's relationship with God or nature. Last, hazadj is poetry of love and romance. These are stories of sacrifice, betrayal and duty, and etiquette demands that the love within be pure and chaste, though going bawdy and making the audience gasp can work in your favor sometimes. If about the self, these poems are expected to share the scars of their love for the audience, but it is also expected that love will triumph in the end.

Kavita etiquette was developed by the Persic poet Damu around a century ago. He taught many, and he hated to see his pupils resort to violence for their disputes. At the time, Kavitas had no length limit and could go on for days. Damu realized that such duels were more about the body's endurance than the mind's skill, and to ensure his students honed their skill to a razor's edge, Damu declared that a Kavita must never last longer than one sunset or three Bayts. Various styles have been developed in the last century, and Kavi, as competitive duelists are known, typically follow one school or another. Kavi schools are informal, and while some have national origins, various Dinist pilgrims have spread them far and wide. Nobles and wealthy merchants who enjoy drama sometimes serve as patrons to the Kavi, and may call on these Kavi to speak for them in Kavita, in which case the patron pays any stakes rather than the Kavi.

Vesten Skalds are notable practitioners of Kavita in Theah, having imported it and its rules from the Crescent with Ragnar Odinsson's raiding and trading there. Famous skalds are extremely respected in the Empire, despite obvious cultural differences, and Alwarithli have been known to agreed rather more readily than they normally would to casual Kavitas with master skald Kavi, just for the honor of competing. (Casual Kavitas are more popular in Vesten than in the Empire.) Vodacce poets have attempted to earn the same renown, but an infamous event at the Imperial Court in Iskandar destroyed their reputation in the Empire. See, an ambitious poet named Piero Taglieri began his verse too quickly, tripped over his own words, repeated himself and ended up creating an entirely incomprehensible Bayt. Now, 'eating Vodacce pasta' is a common insult among poets, meaning to make disgusting and rude noises, but saying nothimg important. The effects of Kavita can be lasting, for good or bad, as you see.

It is considered entirely taboo to perform a Kavita on Dinist holy ground. Typically, a public square not far from a mosque will have a small stage or at least two pieces of elevated stone, to allow Kavita to happen and to have the Kavi be seen and heard by the crowds. It is also considered utterly vile, one of the worst things you can do, to draw weapons once a Kavita ends. Only the most shameless villain would ever do this. The loser must accept their loss and rebuild their reputation the hard way. A victor may choose to refuse the offered spoils, which dishonors neither side.

Once two Kavis have agreed to a duel, they must select a judge, or a panel of up to six judges if they cannot agree on one. Judges are typically respected members of society, such as beys, muftis, grandparents, elders and so on. The judges select the location of the Kavita and officiate over all of its aspects. Poems are judged as a complete piece, but a judge can slightly influence the outcome, which takes the form of giving a Bonus Die in each Bayt to the poet they currently favor or who most impressed them. This may seem unfair, but it reflects the confidence of an approving audience. The challenged party selects the poem style from the three acceptable choices.

Before a Kavita begins, each Kavi wagers Hero Points. A PC can wager Hero Points up to their highest Reputation, minimum 1. Villains wager Danger Points instead. The two are expected to wager the same amount, with the challenged party setting the wager. The actual fictional stakes may be as simple as public humiliation to forced indentured servitude for up to a year, to being forced to take on your opponent's name as part of your own. The wagered points should be proportional to the stakes of the Kavita. Typically speaking, young upstarts challenging famous poets are denied and laughed at, for they are unable to match the stakes the poet would surely demand. If they can goad such a poet into challenging them, though, they can set the stakes. Friendly rivalries do exist, and informal challenges and duels are not rare, if less common than in, say, Vesten. This allows a Kavi to practice their craft without having to go into full-on high-stakes competition for it, and typically such challenges have no stakes or wagered points, and no reputation is lost for losing.

The length of a Kavita is always limited. Three Bayts is normal, though more intense rivalries sometimes go on longer. All must end before sunset, however. Each Kavi decides which Trait to use, and which Skills will be used in each Bayt. No Skill may be used more than once, and the dicepool is Trait+Skill+Reputation, rolled after each Kavi has recited their verse. Whoever gets the most Raises wins the Bayt, gaining bonus dice for a future Bayt and moving closer to victory. In a tie, neither Kavi gets any bonus. If at any time a Kavi fails to make any Raises, they lose immediately regardless of any past round's performance, as they are unable to articulate their words properly. This is the worst possible loss, viewed as a more dire fate even than indentured service. If there is an overall tie at the end of the Kavita, it moves into sudden death. During sudden death Bayts, the roll is a Trait and Skill of each Kavi's choice, but still with no Skill ever being used twice. Villains lose 1 die per round of sudden death, and ties during sudden death mean another round. This continues until someone wins or both agree to a draw. (You can use any Skills, but presumably they must be related somehow to the content of your poem.)

The winner of the duel gains all wagered points, converting them to Hero or Danger as appropriate. A PC that defeats a Villain in a Kavita may choose to leave the points and instead drop the Villain's Influence by 1. Further, the winner has all applicable Reputations increased by 1 until the end of the session, or gains a new Reputation at 1 die until the end of the session, their choice. The loser loses their entire wager of points, and reduces the dice provided by all Reputations by 1 until the end of the session. There is also a sidebar saying that any player that recites their character's own poems should get a bonus die to encourage them.

Victory is based on points. The winner of the first Bayt receives 1 point, and 1 Bonus Die to use in any single later Bayt. The winner of the second Bayt gets 1 point and 1 Bonus Die to use in any single later Bayt. The winner of the third Bayt gets 2 points. Common in-fiction penalties for Kavita loss include doing something humiliating, such as being a waiter at a peasant's party, losing social reputation, indentured service, adding the victor's name to your own (in the form of `aqall min <name>, meaning 'less than <name>'), or the last one and also it becomes part of your descendants names for the rest of time. This is in broad order of badness. Yes, indentured service is not the least bad option.

As with dueling, there are Kavita styles. Chamsin style is led by Ruach, one of the Empire's most notorious poets - so much so that he never uses his true name and wears a veil to hide his identity. He is known to be a patriotic Sarmion and either a current or former Chavra warrior, and he has no patience for fools. His speed in battle is beaten only by his wit and sharp tongue, and Chamsin poetry is known for elegant but brutal insults, which come hot and fast. The style bonus is to always get a bonus die in the first Bayt due to this harsh opening.

Damu is the style taught by the wandering Kavi Ranya, who travels among the common people and spreads the history of Persis. She is an unlikely Kavi, having been entirely undefeated so far. Her entourage consists of indentured servants repaying their losses to her while studying her poems. She converts her rivals to disciples, and is strict, but caring. More flies with honey than vinegar, after all. Her style focuses on simple presentation of ideas and themes, so that anyone can understand them. She uses simplicity to convey profound ideas, and her style is easy to understand but hard to master. It is often used to write children's parables. The style bonus is to always get a bonus die in the final Bayt due to hammering the themes of the story home in the climax.

Masquerade is a style taught by the Montaigne poet of the same name, though his students know him by his true name, Raphael. His poetry is wildly popular and he is never seen in public without a mask. He uses a style that was formerly known as the Anatoli Divan style, but it was renamed due to his sheer mastery of it. His poems make the blood pound and the cheeks blush, making the mundane sound obscene and using complex and beguiling metaphors. His poetry books can be found from Inismore to the 8th Sea, and he is no less skilled in spoken verse. His poems call on his many love affairs - one everywhere he's stopped, it seems - and he uses them to explore the depths of romance, coupled with his flamboyant yet beautiful appearance. Many consider his verses to be modern classics. He gifts all who study under him a homemade mask, which they wear to all of theur duels out of respect for him. They often use metaphors relating plants or animals to romantic themes. The style bonus is, unsurprisingly, a bonus die to any rolls in a Kavita using the hazadj forms.

Gofter-e nik is the style of the Warrior Poet Asahn Ekhtiarzadeh, favored poet in Shah Jalil's court. His honesty and aura of genuine sincerity are famous, as is his small size and large, carrying voice. His poems are generally about the human condition in times of trouble, and the need to do what is right and just. Practitioners of his style attempt to take the moral high road in their verses, speaking of the virtues of honesty, justice and positive actions. The style bonus is a bonus die to any rolls in a Kavita using the ramal forms.

Griot is the style of Hamadou Mbaye, a griot from Ifri and a devout Dinist currently on pilgrimage in the 8th Sea and Sarmion. He is a muscular man, but very humble, with an infectious smile and, if insulted, a mastery of vicious words that is nearly unrivaled. Still, he forgives quickly. The style is not just his, having grown from the works of Ifrian Dinist pilgrims traveling the Empire. They specialise in panegyric-style poetry, using carefully worded praises of their enemy to form vicious, cutting attacks. Griot poets are generally pilgrims and teachers, exceptionally well-versed in religious poems and texts. The style bonus is that, once per Kavita, the Kavi may weave a cutting compliment into their verse, gaining a Bonus Die in a Bayt of their choice.

Hakawati is the style of Zahrah bint Marwa al-Amin, who is a historian of her 8th Sea tribe and her family. She considers family and history to be more important than all else, and she is able to recall with ease the details of stories millenia old. She teaches her tribespeople every night over meals, and leaders of other tribes turn to her for help in familial disputes, as have some kings. Her poetic style focuses on family and history, weaving in subplots from various historic events and darting between stories easily. She frequently uses references to her other stories in her verses, interweaving them skillfully and drawing on the oral history of her people. The style bonus is a bonus die to the second Bayt, as the tales are interwoven.

Khol is the style of Astrate Khol, a Numanari haimon - that is, a warrior. Her travels took her to Iskandar, where she learned that, despite her upbringing, words could far greater weapons than blades. She loves a challenge, and her poems tend to be long, grandiose and referential of Numanari epics. Her style teaches grand poems and heroic epics that stir the emotions of listeners. Often, those who hear her feel a pull to explore and adventure. The style bonus is a bonus die to any rolls in a Kavita using the mutakarib forms.

Next time: Regular dueling.

megane
Jun 20, 2008



I have to say, I'm definitely in love with the idea of defeating a villain in a rap battle so that he has to introduce himself to everyone as "Lord Ravenhammer the Merciless who-lost-to-Joe-McAngus-in-a-rap-battle" at villain parties.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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

megane posted:

I have to say, I'm definitely in love with the idea of defeating a villain in a rap battle so that he has to introduce himself to everyone as "Lord Ravenhammer the Merciless who-lost-to-Joe-McAngus-in-a-rap-battle" at villain parties.

As do his children. And their children. And their children's children.

potatocubed
Jul 26, 2012

*rathian noises*

Mors Rattus posted:

See, an ambitious poet named Piero Taglieri began his verse too quickly, tripped over his own words, repeated himself and ended up creating an entirely incomprehensible Bayt. Now, 'eating Vodacce pasta' is a common insult among poets, meaning to make disgusting and rude noises, but saying nothing important. The effects of Kavita can be lasting, for good or bad, as you see.

Eminem posted:

There's vomit on his sweater already, mom's spaghetti
He's nervous, but on the surface he looks calm and ready
To drop bombs, but he keeps on forgettin'
What he wrote down, the whole crowd goes so loud
He opens his mouth, but the words won't come out
He's chokin', how, everybody's jokin' now
The clocks run out, times up, over, blaow!

Coincidence?

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

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




Well that's about the most elaborate mom's spaghetti reference I've ever seen if that is true.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Dawgstar posted:

Confession - when the Russia book first came out and I was in my teens, I thought the White Tiger cyborg was really cool.

Now it all just kind of sits on my head and bounces up and down.

It's probably the best of Scott Johnson's designs, and it means you work for Kolodenko, who's probably the best of the Warlords. So there's that.

Vulpes Vulpes
Apr 28, 2013

"...for you, it is all over...!"
I had a thought a little while back to reskin the poetry battles as competitive cooking matches for a campaign about rogue chefs in the Atabean Sea. An improvised Aragostan style focusing on seafood, a prestigious Montaigne culinary-school style, etc.

oriongates
Mar 14, 2013

Validate Me!


Alien Rope Burn posted:


The real problem with the Perez cyborg designs is that it's not all Perez cyborg designs. Sorry, Scotty.

The Butcher is one of the two signature cyborgs for Warlord Burgasov, the "The Bear of Moskva". The only really exceptional thing about it is a hood that protects its head from getting shot in the back. It has cool swords (but the usual weak damage) and mini-missiles.

Gratuitous Guns: High-Powered Laser ("disguised as one of the mini-missile launchers") and a W-42 Concealed Palm Laser.


This has to take the cake. Disguising a laser as a rocket-launcher...why!?

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

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




oriongates posted:

This has to take the cake. Disguising a laser as a rocket-launcher...why!?

Ah but you see comrade, the enemy might expect missile fired at them. But instead they get laser.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

Cooked Auto posted:

Ah but you see comrade, the enemy might expect missile fired at them. But instead they get laser.

Mega-Damage Yakov Smirnoff: "What a country!"

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso
I'm guessing what happened there is that he wanted to give it a big gun, but the art asset doesn't depict a separate, bigger gun. You may point out that there's no reason to say it's "disguised" and you are right.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
Sambieda dumb? No way!

Young Freud
Nov 26, 2006

Halloween Jack posted:

I'm guessing what happened there is that he wanted to give it a big gun, but the art asset doesn't depict a separate, bigger gun. You may point out that there's no reason to say it's "disguised" and you are right.

Most of those Perez 'borgs look to be melee mongers, so I wonder why Siembedia didn't just write them up as such? The Aftermath and the Mantis having lovely melee weapons despite being large and cool-looking are particular travesties.

Ghost Leviathan
Mar 2, 2017

Exploration is ill-advised.
Far from the first RPG where the writer and artist don't seem to be paying attention to each other.

mllaneza
Apr 28, 2007

Veteran, Bermuda Triangle Expeditionary Force, 1993-1952




Vulpes Vulpes posted:

I had a thought a little while back to reskin the poetry battles as competitive cooking matches for a campaign about rogue chefs in the Atabean Sea. An improvised Aragostan style focusing on seafood, a prestigious Montaigne culinary-school style, etc.

Go on...

Ghost Leviathan
Mar 2, 2017

Exploration is ill-advised.
The Dracheneisen Chef.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
Are Thanatomancers still in UA3e? Man, playing UA3e But I n Like Syrian Hellhole or Post-Apocalyptic Hellscape would be wicked sick. You have your Captain to keep the crew going, for one, plenty of fresh sacrifices for the Thanatomancer, and so on.

E: like, do you have to be working towards Godwalker-dom or whatever the end state is for adepts? Can't you be using that power as a springboard for something else?

Ghost Leviathan
Mar 2, 2017

Exploration is ill-advised.
...for some reason Unknown Armies is starting to remind me of The Venture Bros.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

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

Ghost Leviathan posted:

...for some reason Unknown Armies is starting to remind me of The Venture Bros.

They're both built around a subculture that is ostensibly cool but is, in fact, a shallow trough of stagnant obsession and failure that any reasonable person would avoid.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!

Ratoslov posted:

They're both built around a subculture that is ostensibly cool but is, in fact, a shallow trough of stagnant obsession and failure that any reasonable person would avoid.

...except unlike Rick and Morty, you can become literally immortal instead of metaphorically immortal by being stupid on the internet.

Also, a modern videomancer is a dude who watches twitch streams, I bet.

Vulpes Vulpes
Apr 28, 2013

"...for you, it is all over...!"

It kind of fell apart at that point, as I realized I didn't know enough about South American and African Food to stretch the gag any further to include Ifri and the New World.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

JcDent posted:

...except unlike Rick and Morty, you can become literally immortal instead of metaphorically immortal by being stupid on the internet.

Also, a modern videomancer is a dude who watches twitch streams, I bet.

Imagine picking PewDiePie as your path to magick power. Poor soul.

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Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

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

Ghost Leviathan posted:

...for some reason Unknown Armies is starting to remind me of The Venture Bros.

They're about sad people who ostensibly have immense power but have mostly managed to wall themselves off from the 'real' world where they fight one another in pointless and bloody battles out of sight of normal people fueled by their obsessions and failures, so checks out.

Also, in both settings, I get the impression that when that 'walling off' fails it's generally a disaster for everyone involved.

Night10194 fucked around with this message at 13:19 on Aug 17, 2018

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