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1  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Industrial Incantations on: August 24, 2017, 03:21:55 PM
"The City of Three Sisters"

An industrial metropolis in the Republic of Drachmar.  A coastal seaport and the mouth of a river delta with several major shipping harbors for imports/exports.  It is an incredibly stratified city, with the affluent East Side bearing no resemblance whatsoever to the dilapidated ramshackle tenement squares of the West Side.  The Culture of the city is one revolving around money and trade.  Everything and everyone is for sale here, and nothing is sacred except profit.

Shipping District: Located at the southern tip of the Island in the middle of the Delta, The shipping district is surrounded by docks on three sides, and is a maze of crates, barrels, and shipping containers, including some camps of drifters who’ve made a temporary home in the empty shipping containers while looking for day work on the docks.   In between the shipyards are miles of warehouses.

West Side Slums: Tenements, hovels, and prop houses are all crammed tightly together here in the only section of the city available to most of the inhabitants.  In between the tenements are makeshift houses, and alleys are a tangle of tents and bedding.  Detritus flows in the gutters and watch wagons patrol at frequent, if irregular intervals.  Several rival gangs and crime lords control various blocks of the slums as their own little kingdoms.  People often disappear, and it is an open secret that people are abducted for human trafficking.  Black Market opium and other painkillers are a major hub of the local economy.  Half of the slums are using.  About a third are hopelessly addicted.  Vermin and disease are omnipresent. 

•   What the Middle Class & Luxury districts are told about the West Side.  People are warned to avoid the Slums, which are associated with crime and disease.  Expect to be pickpocketed, panhandled to, and possibly assaulted.  Vagrants walk the streets getting high and don’t want help.  They are a drain on the system, contributing nothing.  They will steal from you if they can.  Don’t leave valuables unattended.   There are drug dealers all over the slums, bringing crime, they are the problem.  Police in the area are desperately undermanned.  We need more police to make this community safe. 
•   Prometheus: There are a network of safehouses, secret meeting places, and hideouts for a militant group of rebels known as "Prometheus."  Their purpose is to overthrow the Wizards and teach everyone how to use magic for the public good. They are known to stage attacks on factories, vandalize shops, stage violent protests, and bomb public buildings.  Some admire them, but the average citizen views them with distaste.

The Fishing Quarter: Just south of the Slums proper is the fishing quarter.  This is a shared port for both local and Corporate fishing enterprises.  There is an open air fish market, but a great deal of the daily catch is put on ice for shipment inland towards the Capital.  Tent cities of homeless and unemployed fishermen languish here awaiting short term contract work on a fishing boat.  The most desperate seek work upon the Hellcrab Boats.

Note: Luxor Boulevard

Midtown: A patchwork of Government buildings, petty bourgeois merchants, the Old Marketplace, restaurants, brothels, theaters, and fairgrounds, complete with a racetrack where much of the rabble pile in on a semi-weekly basis to empty their savings betting on the brooms.  Interspersed are several abandoned shops and buildings left empty by those who failed to turn a profit. Several buildings have mounted advertising panels on their roof to rent out to other companies.  The buildings themselves are often converted into massive advertisements.  Home to City Hall the Sheriff, Courthouse, and a small Jail for holding suspects while they await trial or transfer to The Asylum.
•   The City Council: An assembly of 7 wizards who make decisions they deem to be in the interest of the city.  The interest of the city is typically whatever increases tourism, tax revenue, and profits for business.  It is an open secret that members of the city council have ties with several businesses operating within city limits. 

The Heights:  North of Midtown, with a view overlooking the city, this was once a low-income area, but it has been bought out by the Jin, renovated, and sold to upper class businessmen and wizards.  Most of the prior inhabitants have been forced into the Slums.  Some upscale theaters and retail establishments have opened up. 

Luxor Boulevard:  High-end shops, jewelers, luxury items, high fashion boutiques, antiquities, and art galleries line this spacious and extravagant boulevard overhung with flowering trees, dotted with abstract sculptures, and lined with parked carpets.  Flanking the boulevard are private communities of luxury homes.  There are no police here, but many shops hire private security.

Oleander Hills: Sprawling estates belonging to the very richest of the Jin.  Private, secluded, extravagant testaments to their wealth.  Every home here has a permanent staff of groundskeepers, housekeepers, cooks, and security.
Proxima: The manufacturing quarter at the city limits. 
2  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Industrial Incantations on: August 24, 2017, 02:58:03 PM

Your skills are your abilities in the world.  Anytime you wish to perform an action with a chance of failure, you roll dice.  You will always roll 2 dice.  Which dice you roll depends on your aptitude in a particular skill.  There are five levels of player skill from “Novice” to “Maestro.”   As your skill increases, both your maximum capacity, and your average result increase.  The use of 2 dice is meant to create a bell curve that creates a reasonable degree of stability in results. 

Skill Levels
Novice: 2d4; Average 5; Max 8
Initiate: 2d6; Average 7; Max 12
Professional: 2d8; Average 9; Max 16
Expert: 2d10; Average 11; Max 20
Maestro: 2d12; Average 13; Max 24


Skill List
•   Feat of Strength (Lifting, Pushing, Pulling)
•   Damage
•   Athleticism (Running, Jumping, Climbing)
•   Evasion (Dodging, Tumbling)
•   Balance
•   Flexibility (Contortion, Escape, etc)
•   Smooth Talk (Bluffing, Lying, Verbal evasions)
•   Misdirection (Sleight of Hand, Pick Pocketing, Distraction)
•   Stealth (Hiding, moving silently, being innocuous)
•   Acting (Oration, Playing a Character, Comedy)
•   Dancing (Social, Stage, Interpretive)
•   Music (Singing, Playing an Instrument, etc)
•   Negotiation (Haggling, Mediation, Sales, Diplomacy)
•   Intimidation (Threats, Bullying, Taunting)
•   Seduction (Arousal, Coaxing, Enticing)
•   Tolerance (Shrug off damage, Endure pain, resist effects of heat and cold, etc)
•   Stamina (pacing yourself, keeping up vigorous activity)
•   Immunity (resist illness, poison, etc.)
•   Symbology
•   Incantations
•   Material Properties
•   History
•   Language
•   Economics
•   Questioning
•   Searching
•   Observation
Animal Handling
•   Riding & Driving
•   Care
•   Training
•   Connection (Understanding, Relating, Comforting)
•   Sense Motive (Detect Lies, ulterior motives, & bullshit)
•   First Aid (Bandage, Splint, Cauterize, etc)
•   Pharmacology (Administering medicines and cures)
•   Surgery (Removing bullets, Stitching wounds,etc)
•   Sense of Direction (Knowing where you are, avoid getting lost, etc.)
•   Shelter (Construction, location, etc)
•   Foraging (Finding food & potable water, avoiding hazards, etc)
•   Resist (Intimidation, Temptation, a Sales Pitch)
•   Equilibrium (Keep Cool under Pressure)
•   Focus (Avoid Distractions, Concentration, Filtering, etc)
•   Attacking (Striking with a handheld weapon)
•   Defending (Blocking,Parrying, Footwork)
•   Maneuvers (Tripping, blinding, disarming, etc)
•   Shooting (With a blaster, crossbow, etc)
•   Throwing (Knives, spears, rocks, etc)
•   Maneuvers (Cover fire, Pinning, etc)
3  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Industrial Incantations on: August 24, 2017, 02:46:47 PM
Industrial Incantations


In Character

An electric flavor lingers on the tongue, like the air in a thunderstorm.  The echo of a dozen workmen chanting an arcane syllable again and again with mechanical precision rings strangely in the air. "Chal!  Chal!  Chal!"  This sound blends with the rhythmic hammering of runic symbols into a band of steel, and the sounds and, as you continue forward, the syllable uttered by the next group "Toh!  Toh!  Toh!"  and the next "Sig!  Sig!  Sig!"  Each chant is linked to a single repetitive gesture; a spreading of the arms here, a circle there, in some cases pointing to the sky or the ground.  The briny tang of sweat whispers in your nose.
 This is hard work.

Someone approaches the steel band.  The crowd parts with the reverence paid to a bride at her wedding.  All eyes watch this leather-smocked and face-shielded figure approach.  Never for a moment does the chanting pause.  The figure holds with outstretched arms a pair of tongs closed around a beaker of glowing liquid that seems to churn.  Arriving at the rim, the beaker hovers over the runic etching.  With careful motion, the figure pours the liquid into the channel where it seems to slosh--or does it vibrate?  Yes, it pulses on each utterance of the crowd.  With each syllable the it glows brighter, but vibrates less, until it appears smooth as glass. 

With a grunt, twenty located in a ring around the band all push with synchronized effort, to turn the ring around its center axis.  It shifts by precise degrees, laying befored the figure a new rune, and the process repeats until this one, like the other, is smooth like glass.  A man sways on the spot and collapses.  The foreman shouts out above the ritual.

"We need an andon!"

A pair of fresh-faced men arrive to carry their fallen comrade away.  Almost as soon as he has been removed another steps into his place and takes up his chant..

Industrial Incantations is a fantasy Role-Playing game set in the continent of Anaxagora.  The powerful nations of Anaxagora are dominated by a class of greedy wizards who hire throngs of common folk to perform portions of spells again and again, never knowing more than a whisper of the power they call upon on a daily basis.  A group of Rebels, however, seeks to overthrow the mages, and put their magics in the hands of the people. 

Class:  This refers to your social caste.  There are the Ida (Working Class), Middle Class, and the Jin (Ruling class of Mages).  Each will grant you certain advantages and certain disadvantages.  Determines the basic starting skills available to you, wealth, and social status.
Race: Your ancestral or tribal heritage.  Interacts with your class to determine social standing.  Has some minor impact to your skills.
Skills:  Each character begins play with skills chosen from their Class list.  These determine a character’s starting abilities.  Over the course of play, all skills are available to player characters to learn, and players and game masters are free to make up new skills as needed.    There are 16 skills, each with 2-3 Subskills.  Characters can specialize in certain sub-skills. 
Credit: Wealth.  Wealth at the beginning of play will depend quite a bit on your class. 

4  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Beyond the Pale RPG on: February 10, 2016, 03:41:25 AM

Initiative: Instead of rolling initiative, each character has a base Initiative value, which can be affected by momentum.  Your base initiative value is the better of your Agility or your Alertness.

Out of Character

I am also considering making it the sum of these, to indicate the effectiveness of both.

Characters act in Initiative Order.

  • Momentum:  Each time you are damaged (regardless of the amount) you lose momentum.  Each time you succeed at an attack, you gain momentum.  You can also gain or lose momentum as the result of maneuvers or magick.

Attacking and Defending
When you are in combat, you are free to use a variety of skills to achieve results, but most actual combat will be performed with one of the five Fighting feats.  These are used equally for both attack and defense.  When engaging in one of these actions, you choose your "mode" as well and apply any relevant bonuses or penalties. As with other skills, these are added to a d20 roll, and compared to a difficulty.

The enemy's skill is subtracted as a conditional modifier
What determines the difficulty?  Armor?  Agility? 

Mode: There are three primary combat options for Melee Combat: Press, Stand Ground, or Retreat.  If you have the initiative, you may choose whichever you like.  If you are being attacked, you must choose either to retreat, or stand your ground.
  • Press: You make a full attack, adding +2 to your attack roll.  Push your target backwards.
  • Stand Ground:  You attack with care, making sure to keep your defenses strong.  -2 to attack, but +2 to all defense rolls this turn.
  • Retreat: Full defensive action.  +5 defense, but you must shift backwards.  Not an option if you are backed against a wall or other impassable obstacle.

Critical Hits: If an attack roll results in a natural 20, it is instead a critical hit.  This results in +1 dice of damage.  If a critical hit results in the target being taken out, the target suffers more serious consequences.
Hit Points
Every Character is assumed to have 10 HP at level 1, lacking any modifiers.  Each point of Fortitude grants 1 additional HP.  Each level beyond level 1 also grants +1 HP, for a base HP of 19 at level 10.
Damage: When characters are hit by attacks or otherwise suffer stress, they take damage to the HP total.  At any point between full HP and 0, the character is unhindered.  At 0 HP, the character is taken out, and suffers a consequence, which can include, but is not limited to, death.   
Taken Out: The character is incapacitated & removed from battle.  If a certain attack was declared, then choose an appropriate consequence.  If none was specified, then roll a d6 on the chart below.
  • 1-Hobbled: The character’s leg is broken, hamstrung, or otherwise disabled long term.  Until the character is healed back to full, they are slowed.  If this wound was inflicted by a critical hit, the character loses the leg entirely. 
  • 2-Main Hand: The character’s dominant hand or arm is badly injured, rendering it unfit for use.  Any attempt to do so causes 1 dice of stress to accrue.  This remains in effect until all HP damage has been healed.  Using the off-hand to make attacks results in a -2 penalty.
  • 3-Off Hand:  Your non-dominant hand or arm is injured, making you unable to effectively use a shield, dual wield, or use a two-handed weapon.  Attempts to do such cause 1 dice of stress to accrue.  This lasts until the character is fully healed. 
  • 4-Chest: You have an injury to a vital organ, and must remain still, or at least move very lightly.  Each turn you participate in combat, you suffer 1 point of stress damage, and must roll against the heal result used to bind your wounds.  If you fail the check, your wound reopens, and you are incapacitated once more.
  • 5-Head: You receive a concussion, and are dizzy the rest of the day.  You may lose brain function or intelligence permanently.
  • 6-Death: Your character is killed. 

5  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Beyond the Pale RPG on: February 10, 2016, 03:41:05 AM
More details to follow

A poet and performer, keeper of knowledge and lore.
Armor:  Bards can wear light armor only.  They cannot use shields
Performer: Bards get 1 point for free in all social skills.
Skill Points: Athletic 3/level; Fighting 3/level; Mental 7/level; Sense 5/level; Social 7/level

A dashing rogue and a highwayman, the cateran lives a life of crime, relying on his wits, and keeping a step ahead of those who seek to bring him to justice.  Known for stealing cattle
Armor: Caterans can wear light armor only.  They can use shields.
Wary: Caterans get 1 point for free in all sense skills
Skill Points: Athletic 5/level; Fighting 5/level; Mental 3/level; Sense 7/level; Social 5/level

A priest and magician, a druid is a member of the intelligentsia.  They know more about the world around them than anyone.
Armor: Druids cannot wear armor or use shields.
Intelligentsia:  Druids get 1 point for free in all mental skills.
Skill Points: Athletic 3/level; Fighting 3/level; Mental 7/level; Sense 7/level; Social 5/level

A heavy-infantry warrior common to mercenary companies, known for using the best armor and biggest weapons.
Armor: Galloglasses can wear any armor, but cannot use shields.
Weapons: Galloglasses are proficient in 2-handed weapons, especially swords or axes
Tough: Galloglasses begin play at level 1 with +5 max HP.
Skill Points: Athletic 5/level; Fighting 7/level; Mental 3/level; Sense 5/level; Social 5/level

A light-infantry warrior known for mobility, ranged attacks, and hit-and-run tactics.
Armor: Kerns can wear light or medium armor, and can use shields.
Weapons: Specialize in Thrown Weapons and Bows
Athletic: Kerns get 1 point for free in all Athletic Skills.
Skill Points: Athletic 7/level; Fighting 7/level; Mental 3/level; Sense 5/level; Social 3/level
6  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Beyond the Pale RPG on: February 10, 2016, 03:40:51 AM
Skills determine your abilities.  Skills come in 5 categories, which are listed below.  Characters receive points in each field based on their class, and the distribution of these points is otherwise unlimited.  

Athletic Skills
1.   Agility: Your balance, quickness, and precision of movement.  
2.   Athletics: Running, Jumping, Climbing, Swimming, etc.
3.   Fortitude: Endurance & ability to take a hit
4.   Might: Sheer physical power, useful for lifting, pushing, dragging or breaking heavy objects, arm-wrestling, and so forth.
5.   Stealth: Ability to move unnoticed.

Fighting Skills
1.   Blades: Using swords, knives, and axes in melee
2.   Bludgeons: Using flails, clubs, hammers, and maces in melee
3.   Bows: Using bows and crossbows at range
4.   Polearms: Using staffs, spears, and other polearms in melee
5.   Thrown: Javelins, darts, throwing axes, and any other thrown weapon

Mental Skills
1.   Healing: Applying salves and bandages, stitching up wounds, setting & splinting broken bones and otherwise caring for injuries.  
2.   Occult: The knowledge of arcane or hidden knowledge, magickal rituals, and otherworldly beings.  
3.   Scholarship: General learnedness, useful for knowing pieces of information one might learn from formal education on subjects such as mathematics, law, geography, nature, and the like.
4.   Survival: Your ability to get by in the wilderness.  Finding and building shelter, locating safe food and water sources, and so forth.
5.   Willpower: Your mental resistance and strength, determination, and equilibrium.

Sense Skills
1.   Alertness: Your awareness of your surroundings.  Used for Initiative.  
2.   Perception:  How you are at noticing details.  
3.   Insight: Understanding into other people, their motives, and their tells.  Good for knowing when someone is lying.  
4.   Search: Your skill at finding thing you are actively looking for.  
5.   Sixth Sense: Your ability to sense or perceive something beyond the five physical senses.  Can detect otherworldly presences, Ley energy, or other strange phenomena.  

Social Skills
1.   Animals: Your skill at training, commanding, and interacting with animals.  Useful for riding a horse, falconry, dog training, and the like.  
2.   Charm: Your ability to be friendly, persuade, and convince people to see your side of an argument or situation.  
3.   Deceit: Your skill at lying, cheating, tricking, and confusing people.  Also useful for sleight of hand and disguises.  
4.   Influence: Your pull in your social circle.  Can include informants, connections, and funding sources.  
5.   Provoke: Your ability to aggravate, intimidate, insult and belittle a person.  Can make a person look foolish, or cause them to take an unwise action in anger.

Using Skills
Skills are primarily used for task and conflict resolution.  If success or failure would not seriously impact the players, assume they succeed.  In a dangerous situation, a contested situation, or where success is questionable, roll 1d20 and add the character's total points in the relevant skill, plus any conditional modifiers.

Contested situations:  If the PC is competing against an NPC, only roll one d20.  The NPC's skill is considered a conditional modifier.  This includes combat situations, which will be covered in more detail later.

Applying Skill Points
At each level, a PC gains skill points to apply to skills in each field.  No more than 5 points can be put into a single skill each level, but otherwise, players are free to allocate their points how they wish, as broadly or narrowly as they like.  If a player puts 3 points in a skill one level, they can still only add a max of 5 more points the next level.
7  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Beyond the Pale RPG on: February 10, 2016, 03:40:30 AM
Beyond the Pale
Beyond the Pale is meant to be a gritty, easy-to-play RPG set in a medieval genre with a Celtic theme.  It is meant to be compatible with the Cad Goleor setting, tough not necessarily exclusive to it.  This post will give a sense of the overall, with subsequent posts going into more depth.  This post will be updated as necessary.

Skill Based
Skills form the brunt of your character's abilities.  Levels will play a less significant role than in games like D&D, and serve mostly as a way-point for the gaining of skill points.  Skills are organized in groups called fields, and classes earn different numbers of skill points each level for each field.  The Fields are: Athletic, Fighting, Mental, Sense, and Social. 

Like levels, classes play a lesser role in Beyond the Pale than in D&D and the like.  Classes differ from one another first and foremost in the number of skill points they have in each field.  Classes also have one or more secondary features to differentiate them.  The Classes are, at present: Bard, Cateran, Druid, Galloglass, and Kern.

There are four main aspects of combat: Initiative, Modes, Fighting Skills, and Damage.
Initiative: Determined by your Reflexes skill, or your Alertness skill, whichever is higher.
Modes: Based on initiative order, you may select from one of three "modes" of combat for the round: press, stand your ground, or retreat.  These give different bonuses or penalties to your combat rolls that round.
Fighting Skills: Blades, Bludgeons, Bows, Polearms, and Thrown.  These can be used for attack or defense.  Additional, Reflexes can be used to defend. 
Damage: When attacks succeed, they deal damage, which is subtracted from the Character's Hit Points. 
8  Campaign Creation / Roleplaying / Re: Pathfinder - Fixing Feats on: February 09, 2016, 04:11:05 PM
What if feats in general scaled upwards with your level?  For instance, skills like dodge and weapon focus (and so forth) which provide a +1 bonus increase to +2 at level 6, +3 at level 9, +4 at level 12, +5 at level 15, etc.?
9  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: The Frontier on: February 09, 2016, 03:18:16 PM
I haven't had time to read this in depth, but what I've seen of this so far I quite like.
10  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Ríoltad Brigantí (Kingdom of Brigantia) on: January 13, 2016, 11:23:24 AM


Where is is she getting the money for all that rebuilding, if she's lowering taxes at the same time? With the wars over for now there'll be no quick income from plunder either, so it seems inevitable that someone within the kingdom will have to cover the expenses.
I notice that the nobles are feeling annoyed.  Are they the ones who are being asked to foot the bill for all of this?
11  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Ríoltad Brigantí (Kingdom of Brigantia) on: January 11, 2016, 09:52:06 PM
I am continuing to like what I see.  Right now I am most interested in hearing about the people of this world, and the aspects of everyday life that would be relevant to players and their characters.  Does Celtic- somewhat Renaissance mean more "Celtic Renaissance" in the vein of W.B. Yeats, or like the historical period of the Renaissance in Europe?  The two carry vastly different connotations, and much different meaning for tech levels.  To what degree are the steampunk elements you mention present, and what manner of such exist in this world?  Clocks?  Locomotives?  Airships?  Tesla coils?
12  Campaign Creation / Campaign Elements and Design / Re: What would elemental magic look like? on: January 10, 2016, 11:01:16 PM
There are also other ways to make it less complicated.  Regarding magic items, maybe a bound elemental doesn't have much conscious influence, so you could avoid having to give it a personality at all.  Or else give it a single personality trait keyed to that element (fire is temperamental, earth is stubborn, etc.).  Maybe the elementals have to be bound into a certain kind of gem. 

I am thinking of the idea of maybe a certain spellcaster would always work with certain specific elementals, rather like the concept of a familiar.  This would at least be the case with most average spellcasting.  Creating magic items would be another matter.
13  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: The Rogue Initiative (Pulp FATE RPG) on: January 10, 2016, 10:22:05 PM
I like the idea of a sort of dimensional SHIELD organization, though this seems a bit too vast at present for my taste.  At least a setting.  It hurts my brain thinking about how many different dimensions would be involved, and hopping between them all; trying to keep straight "who did what and when" in which universe.  I personally would prefer maybe sticking to one or two universes, but maybe some weird event caused them to collide, so there are a bunch of weird things FROM alternate dimensions popping in and out. 
14  Campaign Creation / Campaign Elements and Design / Re: Random Magic Effect Tables? on: January 10, 2016, 10:09:40 PM
In a D&D sense, this is an interesting idea.  I'm not normally a big fan of the alignment system either, but it's the kind of thing I could have fun playing around with once in a while.  The Law-Chaos thing used to be bigger in D&D than Good-Evil.
15  Campaign Creation / Homebrews / Re: Ríoltad Brigantí (Kingdom of Brigantia) on: January 10, 2016, 09:54:46 PM
I find this very interesting.  I really like the internal 'lingo' of sorts that goes on with this.  It feels well developed in that sense.  The Tanistry Wars sounds like a real thing, and I like that you have a corresponding term in the "tanists."   I am really quite curious bout the different types of conflicts in this setting.  It seems like the allies and tributaries make quite a buffer between Enis Brigantí and its enemies, so it sounds like the isle itself is pretty safe.  Who are the heroes in this setting?  Do they belong to one political group or another?  Or are there heroes on both?  As a "Celtic" setting, how prevalent are druids and gods?  I see you mention they were "strengthened by Conlaoch and his heirs" but that's quite ambiguous.  What role do they play in the setting "today" as players would know it?

Having spent a lot of time and energy on my own Celtic setting, I am very interested in seeing how this setting progresses.
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