Aug. 8th, 2012

innocent_man: (Default)
So, look what I found from five fricking years ago on RPG.Net:

(I am really goddamn tired right now, so if this doesn't make any sense, blame the fatigue and end-of-semester boozing earlier.)

BlackHat_Matt's World of Darkness:

There are supernatural beings in the world, and everybody knows it. Well, everybody at the top end of the world (where highly educated mages, ancient vampires, and the richest, brightest and "best" of the world hobnob) and the bottom end (in the slums, ghettos, and rural areas where no one's going to hear you until it's too late and lycanthropes, feral vampires and street mages try to hash out a living).

The folks in the middle? The folks who live in the burbs and pay their taxes and all? They know about the supernatural in the same way that, in the real world, they know about hunger or disease or poverty. Pretty abstractly and thus not a real pressing concern on their time (until it happens to them somehow).

The game focuses on the street-level stuff. The World of Darkness is painted in blues, grays and dark purples. Organizations of supernatural creatures are more like gangs, secret societies or crime families than global networks, and if they're bigger than state-wide, that's scary and rare.

The supernatural is the truth no one wants to admit. Everyone knows it, but mostly you just try to get by and keep your head down. The numbers are low; there aren't that many vampires or werewolves (the ones who really prey on people - oh, yes, werewolves fucking eat flesh), and they aren't dumb enough to make targets of themselves. But some folks can't help but see the supernatural. Cops have to respond to calls about blood-drained corpses. MEs and forensic pathologists have to worry that the body they're working on might rise up...hungry. Bartenders in this World of Darkness are knowledgeable and paranoid. Alcoholism and suicide rates are higher among these professions.

The World of Darkness is part film noir, part splatterpunk, part psychological thriller and part humanist manifesto. Here's the take-home message: You take hope where you can find it. There is no one coming to save you, and those wolves at the door aren't fucking metaphorical. You might be a vampire, a mage, a cop, or just someone trying to get by in a world like this, but at the end of the day (night), the question is: What are you going to do?

Light a candle, or curse the darkness?

Gee, think this has been in my brain for a while?

By the way, there's an update on the book situation over here. It's not good news.

I would, however, like to make a character.

The Game: Cortex
The Publisher: Margaret Weis Producations
Degree of Familiarity: Some. I've played Serenity and run Leverage, both of which work on this engine.
Books Required: Just the one.

So, the Cortex book is basically the game system, presented so you can use it as a generic system a la GURPS or d20. In the back, we've got several sample settings, which is good because it's hard to make a character with no setting, yeah? So which one?

Hrm. I'm not terribly fond of any of them, really. One is Star of the Guardians, which is more-than-vaugely Star Wars-ish, with hints of Dune. It's the one that interests me most, but there are no campaign seeds or suggestions, and there's so much backstory (told very quickly) that I can't help wondering if the setting would be interesting if I haven't read the novels (which I haven't).

Oh, what the hell. I haven't made a sci-fi character in a while. Let's do this.

The setting write-up talks about the ruling class, folks called the Blood Royals who were genetically engineered to be leaders and psionics. They have access to these kickass things called Bloodswords, weapons that work by stabbing you in the hand with needles and then becoming Lightsabers. I like that, and it's tempting to play a Blood Royal, but it's also tempting to play the Han Solo type who has no time for that kind of magic.

Ah, hell, I so rarely play the Chosen One. I'll make a younger character, then, someone who was looking forward to a life of leisure before the destruction of the old republic (like I said, you can see some Star Wars in here). That'll put me as a novice character, I think.

My Concept is "embittered princeling." He was only five when the monarchy was overthrown, and he's been in hiding in various places ever since (it's been 18 years since the overthrow of the monarchy; I think that's "current day." Honestly the summary makes my eyes glaze over).

Attributes. I get 42 points, and each die type costs its value (so a d10 costs 10). Hang on.

Agility d10
Strength d6
Vitality d8
Alertness d6
Intelligence d6
Willpower d6

Derived Attributes. Fuck you, these go at the end.

Traits. These are Assets and Complications. I start with no free Assets; I have to take Complications to get any. So hang on, let's look at the list.

I want Combat Paralysis (d4). Makes sense for a dude who's lived a mostly-sheltered life. Same reason, I'll take Low Pain Threshold (d6). Ooh, On the Run makes sense. I'll take d12; something about him threatens the status quo to an alarming degree (again, this would require digging into the setting a bit more). Finally, I take Rotten Luck (d8). Twice per session, the GM can make me reroll a successful roll. That sucks, but with a good GM it'd be fun.

Right, that's my 30 points (I can't take more than that). Now, Assets! I take Blood Royal (d8), which lets me use a Bloodsword and psionics and stuff. I should look up psionics, then.

OK, so the system is pretty loose. I'll take Telekinesis (d10), and say that he would have more psi, except he hasn't really had the training he needs.

Ah, hell, go big or go home. I'll take Destiny (d12), which eats the rest of my points. Once per session I can be saved from a roll that would kill me. My Destiny might be to bring back the nobles or some shit. Or, like, bring balance to the Force. Oh, wait, wrong IP.

Anyway, Skills. I get 62 points. This works like Serenity; I can take a General Skill up to d6, but if I want it better than I have to specialize. I'm hip.

First thing's first: Bloodsword. I buy Melee Weapons up to d6, and then Bloodsword to d10. Costs me 10 total.

Athletics d6, sure. Pilot d4. Ranged Weapons d4. Guns d4. Lot of broad, light combat training, but little experience. I have 34 left. I'll take Tech d6, Knowledge d6 (Blood Royal d8), Covert d6, Influence d6 (Intimidate d8). Six points left. I'll spend 2 into a Stealth specialty and put the other d4 into Discipline.

Technically Gear is next, but fuck that. I'm already bored. How about Derived Attributes?

I get 14 Life Points (Vitality + Willpower), 16 Initiative (Agility + Alertness), 14 Endurance (same as Life Points), and 16 Resistance (Vitality x2).

Nothing left but a name. Characters in this universe evidently have American-sounding names. Let's say this guy's name is Bryn Garlon, just because it sounds more Star Wars-y to me.



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