Monday, March 31, 2014

Who Art In Spaceships

Now automated by the generous Logan of Last Grasp Grimoire.

In Pernicious Albion, the Space Aliens have been replaced by the Grigori, a host of angels exiled from the heavens for reasons unknown, possibly even to them. 
George Frederick Watts
They are led by the angel known as Throne, who ate his own name to conceal it from sorcerers. He is trying to find a way to earn back the Grigori's place in heaven through virtuous acts, but because he is thinking for himself for the first time since Creation and because his brain is slowly being cooked by gamma radiation, the Grigori's virtue sometimes manifests itself in erratic and/or homicidal ways. However, the Grigori are still angels, and will never allow what they perceive to be harm to befall anyone they perceive to be innocent. 

alien abduction
Adventurers sometimes encounter the lost or abandoned weaponry of the Grigori, who do not appreciate thieves. Stats are written for World of Dungeons, but I have included rough conversions for DnD-like games. All angelic weaponry has a range of 300 feet and deals +d6 damage to demons and the undead.

Former Owner (no angel of the First or Second Sphere has been exiled). More powerful weapons means a more powerful owner, who will go to great lengths to get it back.
1.       Missing. Roll again on this table to determine damage.
2.      Angel of the Third Sphere. Device deals  3d6 damage
3.      Angel of the Fourth Sphere. Device deals 2d6 damage
4.      Angel of the Fifth Sphere. Device deals 1d6+3 damage
5.      Angel of the Sixth Sphere. Device deals 1d6+2 damage
6.      Angel of the Seventh Sphere. Device deals 1d6+1 damage

1.       Hierogram, to be embedded in wielder’s palm
2.      Trumpet, 1 handed
3.      Crosier, 2 handed
4.      Icon, human sized
5.      Giant Armor, 5 Armor/18 AC, piloted 

6.      Chariot, piloted  

1. 1d6 uses
2. 2d6 uses
3. 3d6 uses
4. 4d6 uses
5. 5d6 uses
6. 6d6 uses
Adorned with...
1.       Beautiful Wings
2.      Exquisite Faces
3.      Slender Hands
4.      Watchful Eyes
5.      Heavenly Verse
6.      Celestial Diagrams

Wrought from... (roll twice)
1.       Gold
2.      Silver
3.      Platinum
4.      Jet
5.      Ivory
6.      Alabaster

Medium. Vanishes after impact
1.       Radiant Flame
2.      Brilliant Arrows
3.      Spears of Lightning
4.      Invisible Force
5.      Shining Spheres
6.      Spirals of Molten Gold

1.       Medium plummets from heavens to target (doesn't work inside, but will ruin the roof)
2.      Medium launches in a straight line from device
3.      Medium issues in a cone shape from device
4.      Medium erupts from target's orifices
5.      Medium erupts from ground beneath target (can't strike high-flying targets)
6.      Medium forms a circle around user, than lashes outward

Miraculous Properties
Each device has a 1 in 6 chance of having one of the following:
1.       Survivors of this weapon’s attack are branded with a sigil that prevents them from lying
2.      This weapon can take on the shape and properties of any melee weapon at the will of its wielder
3.      Wielder can sacrifice this device to bring the recently dead to life, though there are side-effects
4.      Those slayed by this weapon have a 1 in 6 chance of returning as 1 HP cherubs loyal to the wielder
5.      Wielder can use this device to summon any angel whose true name they know
6.      If the wielder defeats or finds the device’s original owner, they can call upon the angel’s domain/cast a single cleric spell once a day.

Bayonetta concept art

WoD to DnD-ish damage conversion

WoD damage
DnD Damage

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

For the Creation of Decadent Noble Clans

My Secret Santicore submission, now automated for your convenience.

  1. Adelphus
  2. Cavendish
  3. Cromlech
  4. Crowley
  5. Gladstone
  6. Herpetou
  7. Lascelle
  8. Prestor
  9. Salazar
  10. Savile
  1. Bound to a demon by pacts most ancient and foul
  2. Caper and cavort in wicked midnight bacchanals
  3. Prophesied to bring about terrible catastrophe
  4. Ruled by a cabal of vampires
  5. Plan to overturn the rightful ruler of the land
  6. Participating in a conspiracy of centennial length and ecumenical proportions
  7. Desire to resurrect their inhuman clan progenitor
  8. Bloodline bears a terrible disease
  9. Dream every night of mighty conflagration and unending flood
  10. Patriarch is actually a woman
Source of Power
  1. Ties to Church
  2. Sheer privilege
  3. Scholarly talent
  4. Organized crime
  5. Ties to government
  6. Military might
  7. Sorcery
  8. Popular support
  9. Banking
  10. Business
  1. Ruled by grotesque appetites and uncanny predilections
  2. Cheerfully inbred moron
  3. Avuncular, seasoned statesman; loves them some prostitutes
  4. Oscillates between mostly kindly pragmatism and frothing psychopathy
  5. Megalomaniacal genius with childlike sensibilities
  6. Child kept on short leash by manipulative handlers
  7. Seized by Byronic melancholy; addicted to opium; writes terrible poetry
  8. A sorcerer of prodigious talent and boundless ambition
  9. Saintly sense of morals with sinister bearing; is squeaky clean despite everyone’s suspicions
  10. Innumerable, public affairs make for endless rumor-mill grist; loathed by spouse
  1. Longtime allies of…
  2. Leader in love with head of…
  3. Ancient rivals of…
  4. Shadow war with…
  5. Secret treaty with…
  6. Wants a political marriage with…
  7. Seeks to utterly destroy…
  8. Attempting hostile takeover of…
  9. Owes a big favor to…
  10. Petty grudge against…
  1. Gilt palace riddled with chapels
  2. Decrepit manor surrounded by toiling peasants
  3. Frigid northern castle
  4. Contemporary urban estate
  5. Dour converted abbey
  6. Imposing mountain fortress
  7. Gothic monstrosity out in the forest
  8. Abominably gauche rococo estate
  9. Classical lakeside villa
  10. Sepulcral subterranean complex
  1. Valuable but illiquid holdings
  2. Wealthy, but not for long
  3. Massive reserves, little income
  4. Steady cash flow
  5. Middling wealth, lots of embezzlement
  6. Razor thin margins
  7. Impoverished
  8. Nobody’s sure, exactly
  9. Incalculably wealthy
  10. Make a lot, spend a lot
Dubious Allies
  1. Elite mercenaries wearing crow’s head helmets
  2. The Beldame, a virtuoso assassin with a thing for needles
  3. The Magus Bashool, a necromancer of questionable loyalties and troubling ethics
  4. Pack of half-starved, semi-trained, and uncannily sapient wolves
  5. Red Madama, an insane butterfly demon
  6. King of Knots, gallows-spirit and malign ghost of a long dead monarch
  7. Rompa, shark-toothed sea giant who has power over ice
  8. Trugulore and Choss, Attorneys-At-Brawl
  9. No-Face Man, can crawl through mirrors and dreams
  10. Unnamed rogue angel; once held power over mercy, now seriously reconsidering

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

but there's more

This is a player booklet I wrote up for a World of Dungeons Dark Souls game. It certainly isn't a master class in usability, but I want to get this idea out of my head.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Witch 2.0

Finally got to playtest the my LotFP-ified Warlock class in Akenia's Spire of Asmodal. I think the core idea works, but I suspect the class as written would remove some of the need to plan carefully at lower levels and scale poorly with level. At level 1, it makes sense that for a witch to struggle to magic open a door, but at level 20, they should be able to at least try to throw around boulders. 
final fantasy xiv
 HP and experience as Cleric; saves and weapon and armor restrictions as magic-user

All witches have a wand, which they need to cast spells. They can cast spells as many times as they wish, and casting a spell takes the same amount of time as attacking in combat. The range of a witch's spells is equal to 20*level feet. A spell can replicate the effect of any simple weapon, tool, or mechanical object, such as a torch, grappling hook, bow and arrow, or ladder. Players must describe what a spell actually looks like.

Witches start with a 1 in 6 chance of successfully casting any given spell, and if they fail a spell, they must wait 1 round (10 min) before they can try it again. They can allocate spell points to a spell in order to increase its odds of success. Witches start with 4 spell points, and gain 2 more every level. The list of spells is not set; players can invent them, as long as they fit the parameters for witch magic stated above. 

The maximum number of spells a witch can have active at one time is half level, rounded up. Otherwise, spells last until dismissed. If a spell involves particularly strong resistance on the part of the target, the Witch must make a Charisma check with a bonus equal to their level.
Sample Spell List
Aegis (shield)
Ascendance (pulley)
Adherence (rope or chain)
Attraction (grappling hook)
Destruction (bow and arrow)
Incandescence (torch)
Inscription (marker)
Quicken (roller skates)
Repulsion (pole)

If you find skill points too fussy, just use the Elf skill progression for Search as the skill for all witch spells, the way Tales of the Grotesque and Dungeonesque uses Hear Noise column for all thief abilities.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

World of Lamentations

So games with others is on a wicked cool Dark Souls kick, and it got me thinking about the kinds of NPCs I would have in such a game. It also made me want to get around to hacking a less forgiving version, more LotFP-like version of World of Dungeons. I briefly considered calling it World of Princesses, but that's another game.

Perish is an island-nation-continent that exists in an endless state of darkness. It is also a megadungeon. There is no real civilization, just a handful of scavenging settlements and a half-dozen domains run by slowly dying, half-mad godlings. The fact that the characters are on Perish means that they have, sometime before level 1, screwed up in an extraordinary way. The main things to do on Perish are finding out how to get off or, if you are particularly ambitious, figuring out how it ended up being such a terrible place. The two tasks may not be completely unrelated. 

Denizens of the Land of Perish
Diminished Gods
Centuries ago, something killed the God of the Sun, which plunged nearly all of Perish into perpetual night. Time has consumed many of the details, but some think one, some, or all of the surviving gods were involved. Whoever committed the crime likely knows where the missing Sun God's soul is, which is necessary to bring light back to the Sun. 

As I imagine this, all of the following details are extremely valuable and difficult to find—this is a sort of megadungeon murder mystery, so facts have to be scarce on the ground for this to work.
  1. Vast, the Verdant Wyrm presides over the Febric Wood. Some say it lured the Sunlit God to the place of his murder with the promise of a gift. Its favored children are the Great Stags and their riders, the Horned Hunters, who prey on the slavering beasts of the Wood.
  2. Ixion, Envoy of the Many Dead rules the Elysian Demimonde. He claims to serve the innumerable infernal powers of the Underworld, and it is rumored that they compelled him to betray the Sunlit God, his greatest and most beloved ally. His greatest servants are the Asphodel Maidens, who wear red in their hair, and the Knights of Gules, who rot inside their armor.
  3. Haeme, Princess of the Splendid Dead holds court in the Manse Macabre. She loathes Ixion and his affinity for shambling masses of restless Dead, but her hatred of the God of the Sun and his searing daylight is legendary. Her most powerful servitors are the Sanguine Coterie, who admit only vampires of the purest of bloodlines , and the Midnight Choir, whose choristers can wound with their song.
  4. Vercingetorix, the Golden Hero reigns from the top of the Tower of Blades. There are those who suspect that only the skill and sword of such a warrior could kill the God of Sunlight, but his Soldiers of Fortunes and Auric Priests believe in nothing but his virtue.
  5. Elagabulus, Lord of Dusk can be found in the chambers of his father's Solar Palace, where he drafts his plans to reignite the Sun. Surviving histories note that the courier who reported the Sunlit God's death found the Lord already sitting in his father's throne. The Crepuscule Wanderers and the Archivists number his most devoted followers 
  6. Martel, Radiant Envoy of the Moon dwells with her servants in the Lunary Gardens.  The cynical note that where the power of the Sun has failed, the Moon hangs steady in the sky, but Perish would be truely lightless her illumination, attenuated as it is. The Knights Nightingale and the Plangent Dreamers attend to her dutifully.
Strange Wanderers
There is a 1 in 6 chance a random wanderer will be waiting for you in a place of safety when you arrive.
  1.  The Scholar of Clabrous is dressed in antiquated finery and wears a crow mask at all times. It rewards with Soul anyone who brings it fresh specimens of the blood, flesh, or bone of any creature, though it favors rare or exotic creatures. No one knows what the Scholar does with these substances, or how it is able to wander as it wishes unharmed.
  2. Newt is a pallid little boy with great dark eyes and sharp pearly teeth who sells rumors, stories, maps, and ciphers, though he insists all his customers buy them sight unseen. He hates the light of the moon.
  3. Charles is a spider the size of a large dog with a man's face on its thorax. It lives in a place it calls the Eaves, which shares a border with nearly everywhere. For a fee of Soul, it can lead you on a shortcut through the Eaves to almost anywhere you please, though you may not come out the same way you went in.
  4. Starlit Witch Imanta wears veils of silver thread and a red crown. She will summon forth loyal servitors from the space between stars in return for Soul, but these beings require a steady supply of yet more Soul to stay in this world
  5. Sariat the Weaver is wrapped head to toe in pristine white bandages. She will lift curses, purge poisons, mend wounds, and obliterate traumatic memories for a price.
  6. Rosario the Greatsmith bears a hammer of black stone and his forge burns with ancient flame. He will forge Soul into wondrous weapons and armor, but his prices are astronomical.

And here's how the game is played.

The Primary Rule
When you attempt a task that is difficult or carries grave consequences for failure, roll 2d6+relevant attribute. 

  • On a 10+, you enjoy the fruits of your success. 
  •  On a 7-9, you succeed partially or pay a cost for achieving your goal. 
  • On a 6-, you fail, and bad things happen to you.
Character Advancement
When creatures in Perish are slain, they leave behind Soul equal in value to their level. Soul is required to recover HP—when you receive healing by any means, whether it be natural or magical, you must expend Soul equal to actually regain the HP. It can be used to level up, as well as acquire equipment, spells, servants, and information, though  entities that traffic in Soul are rare and seldom pleasant to deal with.

Gaining a level requires the expenditure of 10*current level Soul. When you gain a level, you gain d6 HP and gain abilities as determined by you class. You may also forgo all other benefits of leveling up to increase an attribute by 1, to a maximum of +1. 

Character Creation
The six attributes are Strength, Constitution, Dexterity, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma. For each attribute, roll 1d6. 
  • On a 6, the attribute is +1
  • On a 2-5, the attribute is 0
  • On a 1, that attribute is -1 
You begin your misadventure with d6 HP and pick one of the following classes.

You add your level to damage rolls and start with 6 additional HP

You have skills. When you make a roll to which a skill is applicable, add that skill’s bonus, in addition to the relevant attribute, to the roll. You start with +1 in every skill. When you gain a level, you can increase a single skill’s bonus by 1, to a maximum of +2.

  • Architecture
  • Bushcraft 
  • Climb  
  • Languages 
  • Sleight of Hand 
  • Stealth 
  • Tinker 
In short, thieves roll 2d6+relevant attribute+relevant skill 

You start with a single random spell, selected from a list determined by your college. You can cast any spell you know as much as you like. When you do, describe the exact effect you want the spell to have, and roll 2d6 with no modifiers. 

  • On a 10+, the spell succeeds, as safe as houses 
  • On a 7-9, the magic works somewhat, or it succeeds at a cost, whether it be in HP, Soul, or be some other turn for the worse.
  • On a 6-, something terrible happens.
When you level up, you can either acquire an additional random spell or gain a +1 bonus to a spell you already know. You can choose this bonus no more than 2 times per spell.

Sorcerers of the Dark College can learn the following spells. There may be others, waiting to be discovered by the cunning and perspicacious. 

  1. An incantation to extinguish light 
  2. A spell to bestir the Dead 
  3. A charm to commune with beasts 
  4. A conjuration to call forth a weapon 
  5. A glamour to change one’s form 
  6. An invocation to seal a pact
Seers of the Celestial College can learn the following spells. There are others to be found, if you are prudent and pious.
  1. A spell to illuminate the darkness  
  2. A chant to banish the Dead 
  3. A petition to heal the wounded 
  4. An augury to peer into the past 
  5. A prayer to destroy enchantment 
  6. An orison to glimpse the future 
You begin with d6 pieces of equipment of your choice from the Lamentation of the Flame Princess Miscellaneous list, in addition to the following:

You start with a single weapon. It can be melee or ranged, though you begin play with only d6 pieces of ammunition

  • Light weapons require one hand, are easy to hide, and deal d6 damage on a hit
  • Martial weapons require one hand and deal d6+1 damage on a hit 
  • Huge weapons require two hands and deal d6+2 damage on a hit
You start with a single piece of armor. It can be of any type.
  • Clothing reduces all damage received by 0+Constitution and allows the wearer to move quickly 
  • Light Armor reduces all damage received by 1+Constitution, and the wearer to move at moderate speed.
  • Heavy armor reduces all damage received by 2+Constitution, though the wearer moves slowly, loudly and struggles with activities such as climbing and swimming.