Thursday, May 31, 2018

ASU- Combat

Last time I wrote about my homebrew ASU I gave the overly story game, narrative version of the combat system. While I'm still a fan of it I also have come to appreciate numerical systems of combat more, and can understand why many would want a more structured game. For both myself and others, I have an alternate set of rules for my basic rule system that works a little better for a tabletop game.

Combat Rules
Every round, each character must roll their class HD as their initiative dice. Higher numbers go first. If they roll a 6 or higher, they get advantage on their attack roll. If they roll a 10 or higher, they can either choose to deal double damage on their attack if they hit OR attack two separate enemies. Sages use d6, Rogues use d8, and Fighters use d10 for their combat dice.

To hit, roll 1d20 vs target's AC. Enemies have a base AC of 10 + modifiers from the creature itself, environmental elements like darkness, and fear or morale penalties. AC above 16 is meant to be very rare to avoid fights taking too long. On a hit, you roll your class die for damage. Sages deal 1d6 damage with all weapons, Rogues 1d8, and Fighters 1d10. You can only roll damage like this if you are armed with a real, functional weapon. Broken or improvised weapons may deal reduced damage, and unarmed attacks may deal only 1 damage or no damage at all. Weapons can be differentiated by weapon training, or by using the fiction. Skeletons still can't be hurt by arrows and such. Two handed weapons get to roll your damage die twice and taking the bigger result.

Hit Dice Rules
Characters roll their class HD at 1st level and once every level after. Your minimum starting HP is 2, so if you roll a 1 you count it as a 2 instead for first level only. For every point of Constitution modifier, you roll additional hit dice each level and take the highest for positive or lowest for negative. This incentives players to consider playing as a Fighter if they roll high constitution as opposed to a Wizard in traditional D&D, as they will get much more out of that swingy d10 and take highest then much smaller range of the Sage's d6.

Monsters also use HD. Creatures with 10 HD are considered the most powerful, as the players cap at level 10. Monsters also use their number of HD as their initiative, meaning a highly powerful monster gets to go first more often. Some monsters break this rule, very fast creatures may be able to always go first or very slow creatures may always go last regardless of their HD. If a player exploits a monster's weakness or uses a hex to lower its HD temporarily, this would also lower its initiative and other tacked-on features of high HD, such as resistance to spells and so on.

Armor Rules
Each class has a maximum AC. Sages have 12, Rogues 14, and Fighters 16. Each piece of armor, dexterity bonus, weapon specialization bonus, and magical bonuses count towards but cannot exceed this limit. This means a very dexterous Fighter highly trained with parrying swords could wear no armor but yet have maximum AC, and a Sage could reach their maximum AC by just putting on gloves and a helmet.

There is also no class based armor restrictions; Sages can wear heavy metal plates if they choose, but their AC is still capped at 12 and each point of AC gained from heavy armor gives -1 to combat saves, so they will opt for something like a gambeson instead. This system does allow more freedom for characters overall; as an MU can now totally wear the metal skullcap that lets him see invisible creatures and, if it gives him maximum AC, can just wear robes for the rest of his outfit.

Ego Weapons
Magic weapons can seemingly have a mind of their own. They demand to be wielded by powerful warriors, and those without the skill or power to use them will be betrayed. Magic weapons have an Ego score which is the minimum point total the user must have to avoid being negatively impacted by the weapon or to avoid waking up one morning with the weapon vanished to find a worthy master.

Ego points are calculated by the user's class and charisma modifier. Each level as a Fighter class get +1 ego point, half fighters get +½ point per level, and non-fighting classes get no points. Each positive point of charisma modifier counts as +1 Ego point. If you meet the weapon's Ego score, you will not receive the negative impacts of the weapon or be betrayed by it when you need it most. If you have double the weapon's Ego score it may be imprinted on you and attempt to return to your if stolen, or cause its negative effect to happen on your aggressive if they try to turn it upon you.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Saltbite

This magic axe was found on the body of a northerner, half mummified in the snow while his skeletal legs stuck out. His fingers still gripped its blade, as though keeping it warm even in death. Saltbite is an axe known to feed off the power's of the cold wind and is at home in the frozen parts of the world. It tends to end up in the hands of rugged outdoorsmen, moose-people, and other beings it respects.

Saltbite- Magic Axe +2
Ego- 4
Damage- 1d10+2 or class damage+2

Saltbite is a magic axe with a hefty metal ring halfway up its shaft, a long edge with an iron “icicle” forged into the weapon, and a mystical rune representing the mountains and the winter on the face. There is also a filled in spiral on the bottom of the shaft, which represents the eternal winter.

As a weapon, Saltbite is powerful axe that deals bonus damage. It can also absorb the cold, and when left to rest buried in ice or snow it gains the power to evoke +1d6 forst damage on a successful hit the user wishes. This charge can also be spent to slam the axe into the ground to create a crevasse in ice or snowy lands, which require a save or fall into the chasm and probably die.

Saltbite has a strong ego. If the user does not meet the Ego level of the weapon, then its frozen powers will turn on them instead. Over the course of a day, the holder of the axe will find their main arm slowly freezing, which will only end if they give it over to someone who can control its power. Having a frozen arm means you cannot attack or use that arm, and will need to warm it up by a fire or let it thaw out in a tropical area. Additionally, if the power of the crevasse is used by a warrior without the necessary ego; the holder of the axe must make the same save as the victim.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Dirt Simple Weapon Specialization

If you are a Fighter, you get +2 weapon points every level. If you are a semi-combat class, like a Thief or Dwarf, you get +1 every level. If you are a non-combative class, you get none. Using ASU or related systems; classes with d10 would get +2, classes with d8 get +1, classes with d6 get none.

Weapon points can be used to grant special bonuses to the character while they are wielding that specific type of weapon. The maximum number of weapon points you can put in a weapon is equal to your level, which means you will have to diversify your weapons if you're a Fighter. Some weapons may be covered under multiple types.

The maximum number of point total you can put in any weapon is 4, until name level, in which it increases to 6 for Fighters. The limit of 6 can only be increased by divine intervention, a special weapon technique taught by ancient masters, etc.

The total of weapon bonuses is the point total, regardless of what abilities you actually chose. For example, your Fighter may have +1 AC, +1 to hit, and +2 to initiative with daggers. This is a point total of 4, and cannot be improved again at least until name level or other circumstances.

Instead of having weapon points be gained from leveling up; they could also be trained by paying a cost during downtime. Each weapon training may take a season or a "Haven" turn. In this case, the maximum points you can have in ALL weapons is equal to the normal point values above; 2 per level for Fighters, 1 for semi-Fighters, and ½ for non-Fighting classes. This cap is removed at name level or level 10, but your maximum per weapon is still 4, unless if you are a Fighter in which case your maximum for any given weapon is 6. Training any given weapon to 5 or 6 point total will require advanced, expensive training that may be restricted unless a quest or service is preformed.

For a point, you can improve your fighting style for a weapon and pick one of the following;
  • +1 to hit
  • +1 to damage against a specific class of creature (undead, beasts, constructs, mortals, dragons, etc.)
  • +1 AC while wielding that weapon
  • +1 initiative to turn order (does NOT count for getting advantage on an initiative roll)
  • -1 to enemy saves vs this weapon's combat maneuvers (ie; tripping with a hooksword)
  • Stuns for one round on a 20 to hit roll. Each point increases range by +1 (ie; at 4 points in this ability enemy is stunned on a roll of 17 or higher)

Thursday, May 24, 2018

20 Origins of Magic Incantations

[1] Each star in the sky is another realm of magic. By speaking the name of that realm, you can draw upon its power.

[2] All spells are spoken in the demonic language of hell, and are taught to humans by demons. Spell incantations are essentially prayers to Satan.

[3] The breath of a person is brimming with magic. By humming and making the correct noise, you can channel your breath into amazing effects.

[4] All spells began as runic symbols and glyphs. Incantations are essentially a method to “draw” these glyphs with sound.

[5] The first language of the universe was spoken to create all things. By speaking that language, you can create new magic.

[6] Contrary to popular belief, spell incantations are the random flailings and flashes of energy in a Wizard's brain when they cast a spell, without speaking their body would slump to the ground in a seizure from the impulses.

[7] Each spell incantation is actually a very long, rhyming monologue to cast even a single spell. Spell incantations Wizards use are shortened, condensed versions that can still get the point across in a fraction of the time.

[8] Wizards tattoo their tongues and the inside of their mouths. By speaking strange words and making strange noises in the right combinations, they are creating runic connections in their mouth to cast their spells.

[9] Each spell is a phantasm, first created and formed in this plane by the first Wizard that researched and birthed the spell. The incantation is its name, but it serves no true master.

[10] Humans have names for everything, from the animals to the plants to the sky. But once they had names for even more mystic things.

[11] Elves invented magic spells. To their ears, the incantation is a wonderful piece of unique music, but humans just butcher it as all they hear is a muttered chant or exclaimed nonsense word.

[12] Once, anyone could will a spell into being through simple thought alone. But the Gods decided to punish humans by taking this power away and hiding them behind magic words.

[13] When a Wizard writes down what they want a spell to do, they reveal it a mirror. Depending on their skill and power, the backwards letters may spell out an incantation which creates the effect.

[14] Incantations don't do anything, it's just gobbledegook that Wizards say to trick non-Wizards into thinking their powers are learned.

[15] Since you can counter a spell by speaking its incantation in reverse, spell incantations are invented to be as complex and strange as possible, making on the fly counterspelling difficult.

[16] When Wizards invent spells, they put a trademark on theirs in the form of the incantation. In the Wizard afterlife, everyone can hear the incantations of their spells still be spoken by living people as to give them more street cred.

[17] All magic words are learned from Genies; wishes that are too long lasting or big in scale are just given as spells. “Do it yourself.”

[18] The incantations are words in an ancient language of the first wizards. Direct translation is basically impossible without more samples; but clay tablets of the original script could be priceless in value to translators and mages alike.

[19] Incantations were created from sacrifices thousands of years ago by ancient Wizards; sacrificing hundreds of people and animals to power their magic words then and forever.

[20] Incantations are prayers of protection granted by God to protect the Sorcerer's soul from the evil magic and demons they release with each spell.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

4 Monsters & Their Advanced Variants

[1] Gray Monster (1 HD, +2 AC, 1d4 claws, +2 to hit vs invisible creatures, always goes first, sees invisible creatures)
Morale- 8, 12 vs invisible creatures
Number Appearing- 2d6

These tiny gray creatures mostly inhabit the ashen plains and dry wastes. They mostly feed on small creatures that have gained the powers of invisibility or shape changing, to which their magical eyes let them see. While they do hunt humans and larger animals when in a pack, they are cautious and They can also use this ability to help them take down larger pray and have been known to attack and kill Wizards who try to sneak past them using stealthy spells. Since they see invisible creatures as food, they are known to be more dangerous when fighting people who use this magic.

Seer Monster (2 HD, +2 AC, 1d4 claws, always goes first, sees invisible, can make a target invisible for 1d4 rounds instead of attacking)
Morale- 14
Number Appearing- 1 or 2 w/ Gray Monster Pack

It is believed these creatures are the breeding females of the Gray Monster species; their position giving them extra powers to help their pack of creatures. These are one of the very few creatures known to be able to actual turn other beings invisible, and these monsters are very intelligent. They use this power both on their Gray Monster pack-mates to swarm and attack foes, as well as casting it on enemies to make them more vulnerable to the regular Gray Monsters AND to separate them from their own group. If a party member is made invisible then other party members cannot cast supportive spells or rush to defend them without difficulty, as they cannot be seen.

[2] Great Ash Beast (3 HD, 1d8+1 bite, has +2 to hit at full speed, charges in, -1 AC when attacking)
Morale- 15
Number Appearing- 1d4

Great Ash Beasts are known to stalk the ashlands and dry wastes of the world. They tend to hunt prey by simply charging as soon as they see them, then once they catch up kill them with brute strength and size. Due to the scarcity of prey and the amount of energy they use in a hunt, the Great Ash Beasts tend to store fat in their crest and on small humps on their back. Because they throw themselves so strongly into combat they are easier to hit, but are threatening creatures to anyone large enough to seem like a good meal.

Starving Ash Beast (2 HD, 1d8+3 bite, has +4 to hit at full speed, charges in, -3 AC when attacking)
Morale- 16
Number Appearing- 1 or 2

These Great Ash Beasts have not eaten for a long time and have become desperate and even more ferocious then normal. Their skin color changes as they lose vital nutrients and their eyes turn red from bloodlust and constant hunger. Due to their aggression and even more slim size they are even easier to hit but also determined to eat the flesh from anything they come across.

[3] Eyeless Undead Knight (2 HD, +3 AC from shield, 1d6 sword, defends other Knights)
Morale- N/A
Number Appearing- 1d6+1

As the eyes are the windows to the soul, the soulless undead have no eyes. Despite this, they have no problems sensing and attacking the living who dare invade their tombs and territory. Eyeless Undead are a little more intelligent and motivated then regular undead, though are still several steps below the living in terms of intelligence and organization. Undead Knights fight very defensively with a large shield that grants them +3 AC, removing or destroying the shield will make them lose this AC bonus and make them much easier to deal with. They may also grant +1 AC to another nearby Knight when they fight in formation, usually the ones in the back will do this to buff up their fellow undead.

Eyeless Undead Knight-Commander (3 HD, +1 to hit, 2 battleaxes at 1d6+1 damage, buffs Knights)
Morale- N/A
Number Appearing- 1 with 1d6+1 Eyeless Undead Knights

The leaders of Eyeless Undead Knights, these undead are focused on offense. Despite being stronger, they have less defenses and if surrounded by fellow Knights who will defend them the Knight-Commander will be strongest. This Knight can also spur on other Knights by pushing them from behind into combat, granting other Knights +1 to hit for one round.

[4] Eyeless Undead Experiment (2 HD, 1d6 Int drain power, deals 1d4 electric damage to attacker)
Morale- N/A
Number Appearing- 1d4

These undead were tortured and experimented on in life, and in death some of that trauma remains. While their original purpose was to tap into the powers of the soul, these rudimentary creatures can only tap and corrupt the brain. The metallic copper caps forced into their head and palms of their hands give them some electrical power as well as the ability to drain the intelligence from enemy creatures, making them become comatose for easy corpse collection to grow an undead army. Hitting them with a metal weapon will harm the attacker as the electricity arcs from their body into you.

Eyeless Undead Reanimator (3 HD, 1d6+1 Wis drain power, deals 1d4 electric damage to attacker, reanimates dead corpses via touch and at least 5 Wisdom drained)
Morale- N/A
Number Appearing- 1d2

Unlike regular undead experiments, these specimens were successful in being able to tap into the powers of the soul after death and are known to damage and corrupt it in their targets. By touching a corpse and infusing it with spirit energy along with a jolt of power, these undead can reanimate corpses to serve their hoard. This undead will be a regular type of undead instead of a more advanced eyeless, but an animated corpse of a large animal or humanoid could be extremely dangerous regardless. As a form of self replicating undead they are considered extremely dangerous and many kingdoms pay a handsome bounty for slaying them.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Dirt Simple Magic Dice

Sorcerers get 1 Magic Die per level per day or per adventure. To cast a spell, they must declare the effect and roll the dice. The result of the roll is the result of the spell and what it can accomplish. All magic dice are d6

In combat, Magic Users are limited to casting spells that use 1 die at a time. If they spend combat rounds “charging” up the spell beforehand, they can add another die to their roll from their pool. The total maximum of dice you can cast in one round is equal to your MU level.
For example a 3rd level Magic User could charge up for two rounds in combat, then on the third round release a spell that uses up all 3 of their magic dice.

If the Sorcerer possesses a Wand or Staff, they can cast 2 dice in one round. Each round spent “charging” still only lets them use one more dice on their spellcast. Some very powerful wands or staves may even grant an extra spell die to be used per day, +1 to spell result casts with it, or other more specific magical effects or powers.

Outside of combat, the magic user can cast as many die as they want into a spell as they have as much time as they need. This is usually accompanied by a ritual.

All Magic Users start with the following spells;

Harming- Die result = damage dealt to an enemy within throwing distance.

Healing- Die result = hit points restored to a creature. Excess points are lost.

Conjuring- Creates a 1 HD creature for die result combat rounds.

Warding- Protects against 1 environmental factor for die result turns; darkness, heat, underwater breathing, getting lost, supernatural dread, etc.

Protection- Grants die result +AC vs one attack OR bonus to one saving throw.

Hexing- Stuns one creature for one combat round. Dice result is maximum HD you can stun

Illusion- Creates illusion of die result elements. Each element is a single thing that fools one sense; a snoring bear would be 2 elements, it's stench would be an extra element, a fake goblin that is poking it would be another element, etc.

Levitation- Can move an object in die result = load for one combat round. Dagger is 1 load, sword is 2 load. Halfling is 3 load. Unencumbered human is 6 load.

Counter Spell- Cancels the result of an enemy's spell caster's die roll, reduces enemy spell power equal to roll result.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Garden City General Encounters

[13]
[1] Giant Electric Thrips (2 HD, 1d6 electric shock attack, attack can chain to adjacent person up to three times, can climb)
Number Appearing: 1d4

These giant bugs crawl up the sides of buildings and use their long antennae to drain and feed on small amounts of power from light and electricity fixtures. They glow dimly depending on how much they have charged up, sometimes the alleyway they hide in can glow bright enough to be visible from the street. When fully charged the thrips can mate and unleash a 1d8 electric attack.

[2] The paperboy runs by and shakes you down for a dollar for today's paper. News is bland as usual, but the paper contains 1d4 useful rumors in the classified section.

[3] Hover-limo floats by. If the party looks professional or well dressed, the person inside may invite them inside for a ride and to discuss a business proposition. If the party is especially ratty or poor looking, the rich person inside rolls the window down a crack, throws out 1d10 glow-in-the-dark bucks, and then drives away with an evil, mocking laugh.

[4] Bloodsucking Ivy (3 HD, 1d4 blood draining thorns, attack entangles, takes x2 damage from fire, immune to damage from firearms)
Number Appearing: 1

This predatory ivy-like plant appears green when inert, but quickly turns red when it attacks. The ivy entangles people and sucks blood out of them. Due to literally being a large number of ivy vines that animate and attack people, it can't really be shot with bullets and must be fought with melee weapons, fire, and psychic abilities. The bloodsucking ivy is the reason many sweeps carry machetes, spades, or sharpened gardening sheers. Usually places where this ivy lives contains the bones of small animals caught in its grip, and only rarely do they get big enough to attack the residents of the city. Because it is stationary once you escape its grasp or know where it hides it is easy to avoid.

[5] Two small bands of orange alien lemurs are fighting it out in a deserted street or down a wide alley. As long as the party doesn't interfere or make any noise, the lemurs will battle. The lemurs fight by jumping at each other, aggressively posturing, and flicking scented hormones from their tails at each other. If a lemur is captured or the fight is interrupted they'll scatter; but you can sell a lemur's scent gland in their butt for 5$ and sell the rest of the lemur for meat at a meat stand for 2$

[6] Sidewalk Sam/Sally (1 HD, 1d6 knife, 3 armor AND psychic resistance)
Number Appearing: 1 or 2

Sidewalk Sams/Sally are psychic manifestations of pedestrians, forgotten faces, and the feeling of being followed. Some powerful psychics create them to stalk and attack their foes, and others unintentionally create them by remembering faces of passersby. Sidewalk Sams/Sallys look like normal people that attack immediately if you acknowledge or try to speak to them. They're not very common or strong, but their bodies are made of smog and they “bleed” small amounts of vapor when injured.

[7] No matter where you are; a dance floor made of wooden boards and music blares from a gramophone accompanies 1d20 folks dancing to swing. If you join in, each party member that dances should state their dance moves and the one with the best dance moves gets to roll a reaction check. If successful; you bump into a powerful character from a random district of the city at the party and get +1 clout with them.

[8] There is a small shrine set up here with several candles, flowers, and sunshine drawings to a dead man or woman. Also along the shrine their gun is hung, though without bullets it still works otherwise. There is someone tending to the shrine, but you could steal the gun if you're quick.

[9] Samurai Hobos (2 HD, 2 armor, 1d8 scrap swords and 1d6 scrap shortbows)
Number Appearing: 1d6 + 1

Several homeless people have joined forces to steal from Garden's residents in this area. Not quite large and influential enough to be a gang, plus they just rob and kill everyone they get their hands on instead of a normal gang racket. Do not roll reaction check; they simply jump from the shadows and attack, wearing suits of scrap metal armor and their hands on large scraps of metal sharpened into swords.

[10] 1d8 wild hogs escaped from the pig farm and ended up here. They root through the trash and soil of the front gardens of the nearby homes, looking for mushrooms. Each hog could be sold whole to a butchery for 10$, but the more you sell the more heat you'll gain from the butcher's gang without paying your meat dues.

The hogs may get aggressive if the party members disturb it; Treat them as wild hogs.
Wild Hogs (2 HD, 1d6+1 tusks, +1 armor)

[11] Film crew recording some staged performance about love and drama. If the party is being followed by [12], then it has a 1 in 4 chance of appearing at this moment. The camera crew will film it and launch the party into action movie hero stardom.

[12] Slasher (2 HD, +1 HD per victim close to party members killed, nearly unkillable, 1d10 brutal melee weapons like hatchets, swords, or power tools)
Number Appearing: 1

Slashers are people in Garden who have tapped into the power of fear and violence to give themselves more power. They slowly lose their minds as they put more and more of themselves into a murderous, silent persona. Each person they kill grants them power over those close to the victim, as well as letting them absorb some of their lifeforce and extend their lifespan. Whenever the slasher is killed, their body disappears in 1d4 turns as soon as it is not being watched, even escaping from locked and guarded rooms or airtight containers. Eventually they will return, regain their strength, and stalk the night again.

Unlike many of the other dangers of Garden, Slashers are almost always people who have chosen to become them to gain immortality and feed off the life force of other citizens of the city. It is for this reason that Slashers are hated and presenting a valid Slasher token (an article of their appearance that is always constant regardless of their incarnation) gets you paid $100. However it is almost impossible to hunt down and kill a Slasher, as they are the ones who do the hunting.

[13] Arrogant purple-skinned antelope Pyrokinetic psychic with bat wings where his ears should be wanders into the party. He has three tiny wisps of fire vertically suspended between his horns. If he senses a psychic in the player's party he demands they engage in a psychic contest with him so he can offload his psychic stress onto them.

Arrogant Pyrokinetic (2 HD, 1d4 derringer stuffed in pocket, can fire 1 damage wicks from between horns at start of a gunfight, starts with 1d6 Psychic Stress)
Major/Minor Pyrokinesis

[14] Rusted hovercar drives by slow, with their lights off, before unleashing a hail of bullets. Save or take 3d6 damage from the flurry of bullets. The drive by will always be from the gang that you have the most heat with. If you don't have any heat with any gang, it will be a random gang that mistook your party for members of another gang.

[15] Saucy dame in a red dress walks by. Her eyes are bright like stars, her legs go on for miles and her neck doesn't quit. She also has two fuzzy horns and spots because she's a giraffe person. If you stop her she'll give you a business card to a club where she sings once in a while. If you roll this again, you meet a very noir private detective looking for her.

[16] Random worker strike at a small sweatshop factory. Workers are throwing rocks up at the windows and the guards on the rooftop aren't doing much about it. If you spend 1 clout you can get inside to talk to the big boss, or you can rally the workers with a reaction check and storm the place. If you end the strike or take over the factory whoever wins will reward you with 1d6x10 $ for your trouble.

[17] You see a very confused looking creature walking down the street, wearing clothes and trying to get a signal on his electronic pocket communicator. He's a new arrival and doesn't know anything about Garden yet. You could either trick him and get his valuables or you could show him the ropes and make yourself a friend.

[18] You see 1d8 troublemaking kids trying to break open a lockbox on the ground. They'll ask you to help them and split the contents 50/50, but only because they aren't armed and couldn't stop you if you wanted to take it from them. The box contains a single weird artifact, as though it was from a Locker beneath the city.

[19] You meet a street vendor. Roll on the Street Vendor Generator

[20] With a horrifying click, the power on this block goes out. Roll 1d12 on the Midnight Monster Table; you encounter it. The blackout lasts 1d20 minutes.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Small Elves are the Best + [Class] Elf

Forget everything you know about Elves. Any while you're at it, throw out dwarves, hobbits, and gnomes too. Mix them all together. This is now one race. Elves are no longer Legolas, they're Keebler elves, or Santa's elves now.

Elves are small, sneaky, magical, and crafty. In a more folkloric setting, they usually try to stay hidden from humans as humans might enslave them or use them to craft magic items for them. In a more high fantasy setting, elves can be found working all sorts of crafting and scholarly jobs that don't require much strength or height. Elves are immortal; at least from the ravages of time and most earthly diseases. Some Elves are as old as the trees, and some are even older.

All Elves wear hats. Some go with the classic red conical gnome hat, but many go with soft caps, pointy wizard hats, or feathery headpieces. Something like a hood or circlet can also work as a hat, but without a hat the elf cannot use their innate magical powers. If you manage to steal an elf's hat, you can force it to work for you. Elves can only have one “main” hat at a time but can create a new one if enough time passes and with the right magical rituals.

If your game uses race AND class, then Elf hats grant the elf their innate magical powers. While wearing the hat they get +1 to reaction checks with the creatures of the earth, wood, and sky. This does not apply to domesticated animals, which view humans as their rightful masters and are too separated from the wild to respect an elf. The most powerful ability of an Elf's hat is the ability to make the elf disappear. As long as they wear their hat, the elf can suddenly disappear from the location they are at, and reappear somewhere else nearby. They can do this the moment someone is not directly watching them, even blinking, flinching, or looking away for a split second is enough time for an elf to disappear. If they do not have their hat, they cannot disappear. Elves can also shrink while wearing their hat, and can change between 3 ft tall or the size of a mouse. Also, Elves are shit at fighting and get -1 to their to hit and strength due to their small size and are best suited to stealth or magical classes.

If your game uses race AS class, then here it is.

Elf + Fairy Companion
Elf
HD- d4
Equipment- Small, untrained. Daggers, short spears, light armor. Max AC is 12

Elves are small, fair skinned humanoids closely related to fairies. They live forever unless killed, and have magical powers. Most live in hidden forest glades in squat houses, underneath the hills or within the mountains, and some even live in hidden places in human dwellings. Elves are small and physically weak, meaning they get -1 to their strength modifier. While being physically weak; Elves can do fine with ranged weapons like blowguns, slings, and little elf bows. Elves are small and deft to compromise with this weakness, and get +1 to skill check rolls every level. If an elf wears their hat, they can safely interact with wild animals equal to their level or less in HD without it becoming aggressive or angry as long as the elf doesn't hurt it. This also allows the elf to do things like build homes inside of aggressive man-eating trees and such.

Elves have the power to disappear. As long as they wear their elf-hat, they can disappear from a place and then reappear within 5 rooms or a few yards whenever they choose. The maximum time they can disappear at once is up to their level in turns. Elves can only disappear if nobody is directly looking at them or they hide behind something for a split second. Once an Elf reaches 8th level, they can disappear at any time; such as right before getting hit by a sword swing. Elves can only disappear once per day. Elves can also shrink when wearing their hat; once shrunk they can do a maximum of 1 damage and only have 1 hit point per level. If their hat is removed while shrunk they return to their "big" size and cannot shrink again, but with their hat they can stay shrunk as long as they want.

Elves also have the power of craftsmanship. An elf can craft without their hat; which is why many elves are afraid of being enslaved by other races. Elves can repair or craft regular supply items and equipment much faster then a normal human. It only requires 1 turn for an elf to craft a pair of boots as long as they have leather, a needle and thread for example.

At 10th level, the Elf becomes an Elf Master. They can now forge minor magic items from scratch with the appropriate materials. These items are regular tools and equipment enhanced in some way over a standard version of that item. For example, an Elf Lantern may be able to be used underwater, or Elf Shoes may let you walk on thin tree-branches without them snapping from your weight. It takes one season to create a single minor Elf item, with more powerful items requiring longer or special reagents found in the woad.

The Elf Master can also create their own elf hollow; a secret place where they live. If they already have a hollow it is used instead. The hollow is automatically protected by magical enchantments and illusions that turn away and deceive anyone, making it impossible for anyone who is not also an elf or someone who has already been to this hollow to find it. The exception is a regular lost child, who can accidentally find the hollow if they aren't looking for it on a 1 in 20 chance. The Elf Master also attracts some lesser fae; 1d6 Elves, 2d8 Brownies, and 1d4 Fairies come to live with them.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

12 Decadent Noble Guests & Their Dirty Secrets

Okack's Hand [3]
[1] Lady Elu
This mysterious and graceful woman arrives everywhere naked. Despite how scandalous or illegal this may be; her nudity is constantly hidden from sight by a trope of expert and highly trained eunuchs, infertile women, and prepubescent children. They jump, dive, stretch, and pose to follow her every move to keep her nudity from being revealed to anyone as an extremely expensive and decadent form of “clothing”. She is well versed in art and history.

Dirty Secret- She was once a tomb robber in her youth and most of her fortune came from thievery.

[2] Count Gareek Olmanson
Massive, broad-shouldered man with slightly discolored skin on his chest and back. Extremely strong but not very intelligent. Mostly tries to impress others by his martial prowess and ability to bend swords with his bare hands. Jumps at the chance to break doors or throw out rowdy guests even when completely unnecessary.

Dirty Secret- He's a bastard child between his father, the count, and a hill troll.

[3] Lord Okacks
Dapper gentlemen who removed one of his own hands and replaced with it a magitech robotic replacement. There is a bright red ruby in the center of the palm, and magical runes etched onto the back of each knuckle. It can move as easily as a normal hand, but sometimes grips too hard or seems to have a mind of its own. Lord Okacks denies working on and invented other body parts, and drags his feet at the mention of creating prosthesis for others.

Dirty Secret- His mechanical hand was possessed by a demonic spirit and often clutches at people's throats or reaches for knives without his control. It also sometimes scratches runes into wood when Okacks is asleep or not paying attention; the runes reveal the secrets to the spell Summon Demon. He hires prostitutes and young orphans as servants to strangulate to death to feed the hand's demonic hunger, but it gets more aggressive each year.

[4] Prince of the Canopies
Monkey-prince from a far away rainforest. Rides a giant, highly trained secretary bird as his mount and rains down fruit with gold painted on its skin to onlookers. Carries an ivory spear and has an avoidance of shorter races. Poor grasp of the common tongue.

Dirty Secret- If his feet every touch the ground he is never able to return to his homeland and claim himself King one day. He will weep openly if this happens and challenge whoever caused him to touch the floor to a duel. To the death.

[5] Duke of East Mountains
This wealthy duke has, through alchemy, training, and a robust constitution, become immune to the venom of every snake in the Eastern Jungles around his home. Wears sleeveless attire to show off his bite marks up and down his arm, and even carries around a Black Killer in a silver cage around with him, which he allows to bite his arm to show how truly immune he is.

Dirty Secret- His Black Killer had its venom sacs removed and replaced with harmless black ink. He actually is immune to almost every other snake, and gets a +2 to saves against any kind of poison, but the Black Killer is too deadly for him to practice with and he hasn't figured out any method. Actual Black Killer venom causes 1d100+50 damage, which could easily kill him.

[6] Neero Cobbleson
Born to a common shoe-maker, Neero's skill and efficiency has allowed his family upward social mobility. His shoes are the best in the land, and almost everyone in the party has a pair of his, due to their comfortable fit, good traction, durability and fair price. While wealthy, he is firmly part of the nouveau riche and is mostly ignored by the other nobles at the party. He is constantly trying to get their attention and be accepted here.

Dirty Secret- All of his shoes were made by captive shoe elves/gnomes. He keeps one locked in his room at the noble manor, in case someone requests a shoe repair or refit. If given freedom, the shoe elves will make Neero himself into a pair of magic shoes that can travel seven miles in one step exactly once, but will destroy Neero's soul in a horrible, torturous death.

[7] Sir Omnsan
Wealthy landowner who is always seen drinking the finest of red wines. Has a scar along his face, but other then that looks exactly as his father who can be seen in his family portraits, which he brings with him everywhere. He tells the story of how he could the scar from a wolf bite at every social gathering where he can get away with it. Is known for being a sorcerer and is rumored to be constantly seeking methods of attining immortality.

Dirty Secret- Omnsan is a vampire. His scar was indeed from a wolf, but from a animal companion to a vampire hunter who tried to kill him. Omnsan's portraits are indeed of himself in the past, but spread rumors about himself trying to find immortality and magic as to hide his vampiric immortality. He would gladly prefer to be thought of as a immoral sorcerer then his secret be known.

[8] Gef the Good
Unimportant 3rd born son of a noble. Light blonde hair with huge, puppydog eyes. The nicest person here by far. Never expected to take the throne or be of political importance, so mostly just sits off to the side and secretly passes the servers a few lumps of silver mined from his home province. Killed an orc once, still has nightmares about it. Every since the orc killing incident he has had incredible bad luck and tries to avoid any balconies or standing under chandeliers.

Dirty Secret- Once stole a cookie from his younger sister.

[9] Commander Jamis Aurleus III
Military commander, considered the finest outfit in the region. Known to flog soldiers on the back of the leg as a punishment for laziness or unnecessary cruelty to enemy civilians. Well regarded by the nobility as a gentleman fighter. Still not married despite having graying hair, probably won't ever. He takes along his two best soldiers with him everywhere he goes, paranoid about assassins.

Dirty Secret- The real father of Gef, Jamis raped his mother once on military campaign. Is extremely worried about people finding out about it, thinks that Gef's behavior is all for show and he is a ruthless killer bent on killing Jamis and taking his lands as revenge. Gef is clueless.

[10] Arch-Bishop Issa Cantorii
Very affluent and respected high priest of foreign, bird-worshiping religion. Tries to bring religion to the moneyed' without being annoying or no fun about it. He has a gorgeous blue and gold songbird perched on his shoulder, which has a branch from a white-wood tree worked into his clothing for the bird to perch on. He sometimes whispers parables to the bird, but mostly cites religious teachings and invites others for soul-searching meditations with him.

Dirty Secret- Notoriously corrupt, as all church officials are, but was so corrupt that his best friend and fellow bishop was turned into the songbird he now carries. The only way to turn his friend back to normal is to convert someone richer then himself, and it is a daunting challenge indeed.

[11] Muela of the Manmade Pass
Young dark haired woman from a mountainous region. Despite her wealth, still cannot find a suitable husband and is only tolerating meeting with the arrogant types at these events to find a mate. While an elitist and a silent type, is lonely and desperate for attention. Her lands have had sightings of all kinds of crazy and powerful monsters killing bandits and invading armies. She is constantly followed around by a cadre of happy peasants that throw rice and drape silk before her feet.

Dirty Secret- Muela can turn into monsters of 6 HD or less. Beyond having to have heard or seen the monster, or a good depiction of it, there seems to be no limitation or restrictions on her power. She also loses control of this ability sometimes when emotionally strained or physically exhausted; she killed her past two lovers on accident this way and is trying to find someone who could live with her.

[12] Lady Swan-Wing
Albino noble woman, wears wonderfully crafted blue fabrics shaped around her body in the shape of a great fruit. Her servants attend to her with parasols of varying thicknesses, keeping the worst of most of the light in a room off of her even from lamps and candles to avoid hurting her skin. She is a talented musician and plays several instruments.

Dirty Secret- Cannibal. Her skin became lighter after eating her first victim and it has continued to get worse; soon her skin will become partially transparent and you could see her organs. She eats the hands and fingers of musicians to claim their skills. She has gained such skill that she can cast magical songs that put their victims to sleep if they fail a save, or a frenzied song that makes animals go into a wild, frothing rage and bite their handlers.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Garden Street Vendor Generator

Appearance – 1d20
[1] Bipedal cat-like alien with a tall cylindrical head. Eyes are placed evenly around the top of the cylinder, granting 360 degree vision.

[2] Goldfish in a jar of green liquid; moved around by steam-robot skeleton. Occasionally the goldfish flicks a lever to drain some of the green liquid down into the robot's engine.

[3] Green skinned alien with a mass of angel-hair pasta style digits for fingers on both hands. Grip is so strong a handshake feels almost like you'll break your bones.

[4] Quadrupedal fuzzy crocodile-bear-dinosaur creature with armored ridges along its head and legs. Uses its long whip-like tail to grasp things but is still very clumsy.

[5] Twin Ratmen. One is my shrew-like and slim and the other has dumbo style ears and is fat. They move in unison and finish each others sentences.

[6] Raincoat wearing alien with bulbous orange skin. Convinced it could rain any second. The water from this dimension burns his species skin horribly.

[7] Cybernetic man with no bottom legs, held afloat by a single car hover-plate.

[8] Shady booth. The inside has a wall and slot with a curtain to make it impossible to see the seller's full body like a church confessional.

[9] Black cockroach man with two arms and legs. Wears a loose coat; actually has two shrimpy middle arms underneath clutching his pistols in case things go south.

[10] Pinstripe suite wearing giraffe person. Cranes their neck around like a snake to talk to you.

[11] Head of a jackal, body of a dark skinned humanoid creature with an extra thumb. Smells of sulfur and has a little pin with a devil on it.

[12] Hoodie wearing teenage alien girl with huge ears. Her hands are like 3 feet long each; keeps all her stuff in her pockets.

[13] Red skinned ogre creature with a bulbous nose. Dressed in farmer overalls and straw hat.

[14] Bone-thin, large feet. Seems like a mystic, is balanced on a telephone pole.

[15] Almost flat jellyfish-like man. Has globs of paint floating through his circulatory system just so people don't walk into him, as he is nearly transparent.

[16] Lean alien creature constantly emitting some kind of wispy purple smoke. That's just how it breathes, but if you stand in it you take 1d4 Agility damage per round.

[17] Wrapped up in bandages from head to toe, weird triangular feet. Carries a metal box with products tied to its waist.

[18] Animate doll. It's a psychic projection, given false life. Can make other toys and objects move by touching them.

[19] Three young hen-women. They whisper to each other constantly.

[20] Totally normal looking human man in a threadbare pinstripe suit and a busted tophat.

Personality – 1d20
[1] Nervous, selling their goods at lower prices then usual. Obviously trying to fence some stolen property. 50% chance stolen goods are from local gang.

[2] Cheery and drunk. Constantly sips from a flask of alcoholic cheery-juice.

[3] Peevish. Hates crumpled bills and bartering. In a hurry.

[4] Happy-Go-Lucky. Seems inexperienced, hands a business card to everyone in party.

[5] Speaks in a groggy voice. Homeless. Looks tired and cold, carries goods in various packs.

[6] Mysteriously quiet. Communicates by holding up small cards instead of talking.

[7] Psychic, prefers to communicate telepathically. Has a good hunch what the party needs and tries to offer it at an inflated price.

[8] To the point businessman. Always gives a fair price, but never haggles.

[9] Religious. Carries a symbol of their religion even in this cynical city.

[10] Extremely racist towards a random party member.

[11] Hams everything up. Constantly yells “CRAZY PRICES!!!” and “GENTLY USED!”

[12] Seems to know or have a distant relation to everyone in the city, including one of your party members or someone tagging along.

[13] Currently corralling and managing several children of their kind while making the deal. Seems stressed but more then capable of it.

[14] Friendly, but hides a dark secret. Has a very violent and tremendous response to a very common and unassuming word, like “meat” or “detective”.

[15] Mistakes party members for royalty from their respective worlds, bows and kisses rings. This is a trick to make you buy more of their products.

[16] Is working for someone else. Seems dismissive of the product any only wants to get this over with so they can go home.

[17] Thick accent, freely offers party to join their family for dinner.

[18] Byzantine pricing and restrictions for their own goods. Extremely particulate about what you can buy and in what quantities- you will often have to purchase 2 or 3 useless trinkets to purchase 1 useful item from his wares. If you break any of the rules he gets mad and refuses to sell to you.

[19] Seems kind, but distracted by something. Claims to have inherited a house but it's infested with dangerous creatures; will offer you wares in exchange for a favor.

[20] Extremely depressed. Quite obviously hates what they do. Would be very open to the idea of joining the party as a tag-along or if they can get them a job somewhere.

Wares – 1d20
[1] Street Lemurs. Recently caught and hung up for sale. Their meat is commonly sold and eaten, especially among the lower classes of the city, and their fur is sometimes valuable for their tails or the bright orange mohawks the males possess.

[2] High powered explosives.

[3] Selling four random chimney-guns, slung around their body on long white straps.

[4] Very inexpensive medical supplies. All homemade. 1 in 6 chance of getting a weird rash for a week after using any of the drugs.

[5] Selling bandoleers of ammunition along with a few boxes of brand name stuff. Has 1d4 special bullets in a velvet purse.

[6] Merchant is wheeling around a wide flat-top cart with a layer of dirt and grass. Selling herbs and tubers that grow directly in his cart. Cannot get any fresher.

[7] Selling “Lucky Tickets” he found in an underground locker. Grant +1 to your next save, then you find them all ripped up in your pocket. Only has 1d12 of them left.

[8] Selling bonds to several local businesses. Each business has a 1 in 4 chance of making it through the next year, and increasing the bonds value by +1d6x5% every year it survives. The player's actions can easily help the business or destroy its competition to ensure payouts.

[9] Bloodsucking Ivy repellent. Works like a charm, forces Ivy to turn away and leave you alone for a few minutes. Each can has 2d6 uses. Has a 50% chance to work on other plant-based monsters.

[10] Traveling repairman. Keeps all their tools on their person. Repairs lanterns, guns, gadgets, gizmos, cars, and much more. Will continually find minor problems and offer more repairs for a price.

[11] Advice and directions. Knows this district of the city well.

[12] Is selling 1d4 Calming Bands. Can be worn on the head of a psychic person can absorb 1d6 stress before breaking. The bands are made of a weird metal from an obscure world and enchanted with calming psychic energy making them hard to mass produce.

[13] Color photographs of recent happenings from various alien worlds. Probably stolen from a newcomer. These are actually valuable due to not having any communication besides what is imported with the original worlds everyone is from. 1% chance it's from Earth with some new things that have happened that none of the humans in the party knows about, like a new president or a famous new landmark is being constructed.

[14] Brand new hover car. It's actually a refurbished older model with a new coat of paint. Has more problems then they let on, but the price is still pretty good.

[15] Eclectic collection of small items, knick knacks, and useful bits and bobs. Sewing needles can be used for repairing items, grease for gun cleaning, and flashlight batteries. Has a few rounds of ammunition, inexpensive rations, and other necessities in small amounts.

[16] Hard drugs. Raka spine-sticks, Illuminated dust, gloves of ceaseless pleasures, etc.

[17] Delicious exotic alien spices. Offers a free sniff to see if you can recognize any from your homeworld.

[18] Fortune Teller. If you buy a “premium fortune” you get +1 to your next save.

[19] Psychic emitter crystals. Can be used by psychic people to boost their powers or to power a few rare psionic weapons or items.

[20] They are a prostitute.