Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Magpie Grenades

The Magpie Grenade is a hybrid stun- and incendiary hand grenade employed in the Vampire Wars of 1980 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Its name is a slang version of the official abbreviation "MgP", referring to the grenade's two main payloads; magnesium oxide (for the flash) and white phosphorus (for the flame).

The Magpie proved useful in the fight against vampires as the flash stunned the nocturnal creatures not used to bright light and the fire caused damage that was harder to regenerate, in addition to providing a more permanent light source so the hunters could finish off the blinded and burning beast.

Lately the grenades have seen new use in the tombs of Egypt and the Middle East as the mummies there have proven very flammable, and unlike a normal grenade, a Magpie causes little damage to the metal and stone furnishings of a tomb. Though some obsessed scholars still refuse to employ them on their excavations in fear of destroying precious scrolls.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Horde Rules

This week I add some Horde rules to Hunters.
First of all, Hordes consist of Minions. Minions are basically just nameless NPCs that have Stamina and Willpower of 1 (i.e. it takes 1 damage to 'kill' them). They have Skills and Edges like normal characters.

When there are more than 5 Minions of the same type in the same place, they form a Horde. A Horde is a special type of 'character'. It has the same Skills and Edges as the base Minion and two actions per turn as normal. Additionally, it has one other stat: Numbers. Numbers is the amount of Minions in the Horde.

When a Horde attacks, it rolls its Skill normally, adding any appropriate Edges as normal. Then, however, it adds its Numbers to the Roll. After which the Horde may divide the Effect between targets as normal.

If a Horde is attacked, it defends like any other character. However, the Effect of the attack is the number of Horde members defeated. For example, say a knight attacks a Horde of cultists. His attack Roll is 6 and the Horde's defense Roll is 4. The knight's Effect is 2 and so he kills/incapacitates 2 cultists (the Horde's Numbers going down by 2.) If a Horde's Numbers go below 6 they disband to Minions.

The same attack rules govern all types of attacks, including attacks to charm, intimidate, mesmerise or dominate the Minions to switch sides or stop fighting. In these cases, however, the defeated Minions separate from the Horde and (when there are enough) create a new Horde that then does whatever it is that the attacker wanted to achieve.

A Leader can use her leadership skills and defend the horde against an attack as well. In this case, combine the Effects of their defenses.

Of course, a Horde may be given Conditions as normal, provided that they are powerful enough to cover the whole Horde. It's hard to Blind a Horde of 20 pikemen with a handful of sand.

If you want different types of Hordes, just adjust the stats of the base Minion. A Horde of plague rats is very different from a Horde of rock band groupies.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Rogues Gallery I

Here are some sample characters converted for Hunters, with Skills listed as FACTS (for Fighting, Agility, Charisma, Toughness and Smarts), with the free edges at character creation written after them.

Dr. Wyrdstein

1 F - Sword-cane (+1 in melee combat)
2 A - Flee (+1 when escaping something)
2 C - Rational Explanation (+1 when healing Willpower damage)
3 T - Materialist (+1 when resisting the effects of the supernatural)
3 S - Know-it-all (+1 when testing for knowledge)
Stamina 10
Willpower 19


2 F - Improvised Weaponry (+1 when using non-weapons)
3 A - Burglar (+1 when breaking & entering)
3 C - Liar (+1 when lying)
1 T - Trap Sense (+1 to resist traps)
2 S - Search (+1 to search places)
Stamina 12
Willpower 11

Holt Teufelfeuer

3 F - Crossbow (+1 in ranged)
2 A - Dodge (+1 to evade melee)
1 C - Zealot (+1 on social attacks)
3 T - Iron Will (+1 to resist mental control)
2 S - Vampire Hunter (+1 to vampire spotting and lore)
Stamina 15
Willpower 14

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Toughness revamping & Dark Powers

It hasn't even been a month after uploading Hunters and I'm already rewriting it. D'oh.
The Skills as I picture them (have to get around to actually writing down what each one actually does) are pretty unbalanced right now. Charisma is way more "powerful" than Toughness. As much as I like bards and other charismatic scoundrels, this has to go.

The new method of calculating Willpower & Stamina goes thus: both start at 10. You have a pool of 3 points per dice in Toughness that you can divide between them. For example, had I two dice in Toughness, I could have a Stamina of 12 and a Willpower of 14.

Toughness now represents all kinds of fortitude and endurance, but the player can still decide whether he wants his Hunter to be tough mentally or physically.

Along with the rules for Dark Powers, I'll probably update the PocketMod version when I have part II and III ready.

Dark Powers
A Hunter can exchange his humanity in return for supernatural power. The Hunter loses 1 Hero point and gains a die in a new Skill, called Darkness. Additional die increases are cumulative, to a maximum of 3; a Hunter has only 3 Hero points to trade.

Each die of Darkness grants a Hunter a Dark Power. The range of these powers are at the GM's discretion, but can vary from Animating Dead to Prophecy, from Telekinetics to Vampirism, etc. For each die of Darkness a Hunter also gains a permanent Condition, such as Weak To Silver, Ugly As Hell, Mad With Power and so on.

The Darkness Skill is used to measure the power of all the Hunter's supernatural powers. It, however, does not facilitate the control of these powers.

Hunters who don't have any Darkness have an extra Hero point as a divine reward for their purity. In addition items that are considered 'holy' don't cause them harm.

Presenting such an item to a creature of darkness, a Hunter can use the beast's own Darkness Skill in the attacking roll, with the number of holy items and circumstances considered as Edges (providing a +1) for the Roll. The creature resists this with it's Toughness. If used to cause Damage, divide the Effect between Willpower and Stamina (at least 1 to both.)

I like these mechanics as they make a Hunter that dabbles with Darkness more likely to be left in trouble as they try to control their munchkiny powers with lesser Hero points to save them. >:)
As always I've tried to keep the rules flexible so they can be used to create a variety of characters. My next post will probably showcase some of these.