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Hot dogs: 8
Bread: 1
Cheese: 2
Pork: 6
Sweet 'taters: 3
Bacon grease: 1
Cider: 3

Total: 24
Banked: 5

Right, so.

The Game: Atomic Highway
The Publisher: Radioactive Ape Designs
Degree of Familiarity: None.
Books Required: Just the one.

I picked this game up at a con some years back, read it on a trip at one point, and I feel like making a character tonight and I recall this being fairly straightforward.

OK, so, Atomic Highway is a Road Warrior-inspired RPG complete with mutants, warring over gas, bartertowns, and so on. One thing I like right up front: The book tells me that the chargen rules create "highly competent individuals," which I like.

Character Concept. OK. Well, I enjoy playing Borderlands, which has a kind of Mad Max feel even if it's not strictly post-apocalyptic. So can I make a sniper/hunter like Mordecai? Bet I can. My concept is meant to be pretty brief right now, so I'll sum it up as "slightly insane sniper."

Assign Attribute Points. Moving right along. I get 18 points to split between seven Attributes, no more than 5 in any one. Let's look 'em up. It looks like Nimbleness and Senses are what I want high, so I'll put 4 in each. That leaves me 7 left, with six Attributes. Hmm. Lots of 1s. Does that fuck me? Doesn't seem to. Fine, I'll put 1s in everything except Understanding.

Calculate Health. (Muscle + Tenacity + Toughness) x 2 = 6. I'm kind of weak, I guess.

Record Natural Skills. I get Athletics, Brawl, Melee, Notice, Persuade, Shoot and Stealth at 1, just because you pretty much need those for this game. Thumbs up, Colin!

Select and Record Rearing. Huh-huh. Ooh, I get a template. Hang on. I'll take 'Steader. My character's family were homesteaders, trying to farm tubers and other hardy foods far from any kind of civilizations. My character grew up malnourished, but lean and sharp-eyed. I get some free Skills:

Ride 1, Heal 1, Melee 1, Notice 1, Shoot 1, Zoofinity 1

Select and Record Pursuit. My job, basically. Bounty Hunter is tempting, but then, so is Wastelander. I kind of need to figure this out a little. OK, so he was on the homestead with his family, why'd he leave? Place was wiped out by a blight. Killed the crops, the livestock, and most of the hands. He went to a bartertown looking for working and hooked up with a bounty hunter named Mug. Mug taught him about the trade, but mostly she liked him because he could hang back and shoot people if they didn't come quietly. Mug took a round in the face last year, and my guy (he just calls himself "Simple Simon") is on his own, now.

Right, anyway. Bounty Hunter gives me:
Athletics 1, Brawl 1, Criminal 1, Heal 1, Melee 1, Notice 1, Shoot 2, Stealth 1, Survive 1. I get a fully loaded rifle, a knife and two primitive melee weapons of choice. I get gloves, boots, pants, shirt, a jacket and a scarf. I get a lighter, 3 sets of manacles, a waterskin and 50' of rope.

Customize! I get 4 points to buy Skills, but apparently I can't go over 4 in a Skill. So I'm at my max for Shoot. I'll pump a point into Stealth, a point into Zoofinity, a point into Scavenge and a point into Intimidate.

Personalize! I've gotten into Simon's backstory a bit, but I need to customize his gear (no, really, it's in the book). His clothes are a pastiche of stuff he's stolen from people he's shot or brought in - brown leather gloves, black leather jacket, dingy white scarf (Mug made that for him), cargo pants with pockets for extra shells, denim shirt (no, really), a lighter with an eagle on it, a waterskin. The boots are about the only things he has left from the homestead - ragged, layer leather, made from the first cow he ever slaughtered.

Simon probably would have been happy hunting and homesteading, but he's good with bounty hunting, too. He uses black hunting rifle that he found rusting when he was a boy, took apart, cleaned, put back together and got working (I'm not getting into makes and models because eh). His knife is one that he found and his dad re-handled with horn from one of their cattle. And then I get two more primitive weapons. Hmm. I'll take a light ax, because I can throw it. He used that ax to kill the guy that killed Mug - he couldn't take a shot at the guy because his rifle jammed up. And I'll take a bullwhip - useful if I want to entangle, but not kill.

And I think that'll do it.


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January 2013

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