Where were you and what were you doing when the first gate to hell opened and demons started coming through?
There was no warning on D-Day (what the news called it) when the first demons stepped through a portal in a small town in central California. In the Wal-Mart parking lot, there appeared a fiery ring suspended vertically in the air with only blackness in the center, like a viscus pool of oil. The surface rippled as something stepped out of it.
The red-skinned, bat-winged creature that ravaged and murdered the shocked people it came across was only the first. Two more joined it and the trio slaughtered nearly everyone inside the store that had not fled immediately.
The local sheriff and deputies had arrived on scene a few minutes later finding the trio of demons dragging some unconscious captives back to the fiery ring in the parking lot. News vans had recorded the brief gun battle as the local law enforcement opened fire with pistols and shotguns. That had only pissed the creatures off as they retaliated by trashing the police cruisers and ripping the policemen limb from limb. Then the demons returned through the portal with their captives and the fiery ring disappeared afterward.
Over the next days, more and more portals were opened around the world. Hell's invasion had begun!
I am looking for 1-5 players that are interested in some rules-lite fantasy set in the modern world. The style will be more about story-telling and role-playing than worrying too much about the mechanics of things. It will loosely be based upon D20 Modern Urban Arcana.
The Prologue will be individual starts and more freeform in nature as the world crumbles into an apocalypse after law enforcement and the military's conventional weapons and tactics proved ineffective. The PCs will get developed during this time and can as varied and different backgrounds as they would like.
In chapter 1 the story will skip ahead to bring the PCs together in a group to combat the demons forming a special operations group that use a combination of magic and technology to fight back.
To get started, players need the following:
1. A character avatar for IC posts (sized between 100-150 pixels in height).
2. Character concept: 1-2 sentence summary
3. Description of appearance
4. Personality defined (this may be changed during the prologue)
5. Background: This doesn’t need to be a complete character history, allowing for adjustments and additions during the Prologue. The background should only cover the character’s events leading up to D-day.
You can post your characters in this thread for now, putting the requirements into a sblock to conserve space when scrolling through the thread.
The prologue for each character will start with their first encounter with a demon or portal opening, allowing player freedom to set the scene for it.
Rosie Flores - Closed
J Roc - Closed
Each PC should have an idea of their basic traits.
Based on what you think, assign an adjective to describe each (Good, Above Average, Average, or Below Average). Consider the traits being balanced on a bell curve with 1 high, 1 low, and the other 4 split between the middle two.
[sblock=Luck]Luck rolls are called for when chance is all that stands between two paths for the story to take, or immediately after a failed success roll to give a character that one last chance... Another use for luck is to settle minor questions which have little bearing on the story, such as whether a character happens to be wearing a hairpin or carrying a lighter (since we will not be strictly tracking every little piece of gear/equipment).
Luck can be a character’s best friend. If he makes his luck roll he can save himself after a particularly dismal die roll, a feature which allows for a certain heroic confidence when entering dangerous scenes.
Luck rolls are identical to basic success rolls in how they work: the GM sets a target number (TN) and if you roll equal to it or under, you succeed. Default TN is 6 unless otherwise specified.
There comes a scene in a character’s life when he’s hit bottom, when the situation has become so grave that nothing short of a miracle can save him now. In these cases, the luck trait allows one final recourse to turn the story back into his favor...
If such a case occurs where you’ve failed a luck roll that was really important, you may at that moment choose to “trade” some of your permanent luck to change the roll to a success. This choice causes your luck trait to lose a permanent rung on the competency ladder (until d30), but at least your character is still alive and kicking.
Trading your luck in this way can keep your character alive and on top of things for quite a while, but remember, everyone’s luck has to run out sometime...
Luck Roll Example:
The Ogrean were everywhere. Laerd continued hacking into the fray as he watched Ryla cross the perilous catwalk to safety. “I’m going to run across as fast as I can,” he said.
“That’s not so easy, Laerd,” warned the GM. “Make an agility save, target of 3.” Laerd was in the militia and had great balance (D8). He spun and dashed across the beam. The die was tossed: a 7. “Aye!!” Laerd’s foot came out from under him. Ryla screamed as she watched him fall and splash into the freezing water below...
“Make a luck save, Laerd,” said the GM ominously, “and you better not miss this one...”
He hit the water hard. He felt the icy embrace as he was swept along. At least he was a little more lucky than the average person (D10). He rolled: a 7. A target hadn’t been specified, so he needed a 6 or less...
The Storyteller raised an eyebrow. “The cold is sapping your strength. From above and behind you think you hear Ryla screaming your name. You fight madly with the waves, but the rushing stream is so painfully cold. You gasp in water... you try to cough...”
“Okay, okay. I’m gonna trade a luck rung,” said Laerd defeatedly.
“Alright,” responded the GM, “your hand reaches out of the water and catches on a rock. Laerd, your luck is now down to average (D12).”
Laerd climbed coughing onto the shore, then collapsed, exhausted.[/sblock]
[sblock=Magic and Spellcasting]Using Magic would add another trait to the list of the overall traits. Since not all characters need the trait, the character would acquire it as a skill during character generation rules. Then they record it as a Trait, listing it with other traits afterwards.
Some classes have special abilities that are in addition to casting spells (ie. Smiting Evil, Channeling Energy, etc…), those also would use the Magic Trait as pre-requisite and provide the best competency rung those abilities can achieve. Depending on the type of character, they might call the Trait something different: Divine casters could call it Faith, druids and rangers could call it Nature’s Blessing, wizards could call it Wizardry, a sorcerer could call it Sorcery, and bards might just call it Magical Music.
The Magic trait is a prerequisite to take Spellcraft and unlock spell casting. But for many classes, it also unlocks special powers too. It would provide the best competency of Powers that use the Trait as a prerequisite. For example in the case of Paladins, they need Faith to unlock Lay on Hands, Detect Evil and Smite Evil abilities. Clerics need Faith for Channeling Divine Energy. Bards need Magical Music for Inspiring Courage. Druids would use Nature’s Blessing for Animal Companions and Wildshaping.
The Spellcraft skill has a maximum competency rung is equal to the Magic Trait of the character. Both can be improved with XP expenditure as the character progresses. For every rung below d30, true spell casters (Clerics, Druids, Wizards, Bards, Sorcerers) can select a cantrip/orison at d20 for free. These come with unlimited usage per day. Some can be improved with XP to rungs below d20 as well. Improving Spellcraft will automatically award new cantrips/orisons to applicable classes. Once a character reaches Spellcraft d8, they can select Additional Cantrips/Orisons at d20 to acquire more 0-level spells if they desire.
Each spell or spell slot is treated as a Skill/Special Power in character generation or acquired later through XP. Spontaneous casters (bards, oracles, and sorcerers) would be locked into the spells chosen, but prepared spell casters can change the spells on a daily basis. Wizards are allowed to have spell books (also a Special Power) that records the known spells the wizard learned so they could switch them out on a daily basis.
Each spell or spell slot would have its own competency rung recorded, starting from d20, and any Character Generation Points/XP spent on improving a spell slot applies to whatever spell is prepared in it. The rating could be used for improving the attack with some spells, or duration for others. Some utility spells would never need to be advanced beyond d20 nor require any rolls at all to use. Some spells would last as long as the spell caster concentrated on them.
Using Magic spells have a draining effect if continued to be used without getting several hours of rest. Spells can be used freely an equal number of times per day for the number of spells slots in that given level (not counting cantrips/orisons) for Spontaneous Spell casters. Prepared spell casters only get one use per day of a Spell Slot without needing to worry about drain.
After casting allotted spells for the day, a Magic Trait check Target Number (TN) = 7-Spell Level is required each time to reuse a Spell Slot (for prepared casters) or any spell (for spontaneous casters). Success = no adverse effect. Tie or Failure = increases Magic Trait 1 rung temporarily until character can rest for the day. Each successive Magic Check needed automatically lowers the TN by 1 from 7 as well, allowing a spell caster to overcast their spell allotment a maximum of 6 times without suffering from drain.
Once the Magic Trait gets temporarily reduced in competency, it also changes the maximum rating spells can best be cast at. So any spells rated d8 will be cast at d10 if the caster’s Magic Trait was temporarily decreased to d10.
If Magic drops to d30, further failures will drop Health temporarily instead. If Health gets reduced to d30 in this fashion the character will die. Magical healing can restore the drops in Health, but not the Magic Trait drops.
Primary spell casters (those gaining spells at 1st level) would need to be able to cast 4 spells at their current available level, where secondary casters (paladins, rangers) would need to know 3 spells of their current highest level before acquiring spells the next level up. [/sblock]
Then consider some skills (about 10 for now) you think your character would have at least some training/competency in from this list:
[sblock=Skills (Trained & Untrained, and Combat)]Acrobatics (includes Balance, Jump and Balance)
Computer Use - Trained
Craft (be specific)
Decipher Script & Linguistics - Trained
Disable Device (includes trapfinding with it) - Trained
Disguise (includes perform acting with it)
Forgery - Trained
Gather Information (includes Research)
Handle Animals (for animal trainers) - Trained
Horseback Riding (includes handle animal for horses)
Investigate - Trained
Knowledge Arcane Lore - Trained
Knowledge Business - Trained
Knowledge Civics - Trained
Knowledge Current Events - Trained
Knowledge Earth & Life Sciences - Trained
Knowledge History (can use Trait instead) - Trained
Knowledge Physical Sciences - Trained
Knowledge Popular Culture - Trained
Knowledge Streetwise - Trained
Knowledge Tactics - Trained
Knowledge Technology - Trained
Knowledge Theology and Philosophy - Trained
Language (Read/Write & Speak) (be Specific) - Trained
Navigation - Trained
Occupation or Profession (be specific)
Perform (be specific)
Persuasion (includes bluff, diplomacy, and negotiation)
Repair - Trained
Sleight of Hand - Trained
Spellcraft (includes read magic & required for spell casting) - Trained
Stealth (Combines Hide and Move Silently)
Archaic Weapons Skill (swords, bows, etc…)
Unarmed Combat (includes Brawl and Combat Martial Arts)
Exotic Melee Weapon Skill (be Specific)
Firearms Weapon Skill (semi-automatic, single shot)
Heavy Weapons Skill (automatic & rocket/grenade launchers)
Gunnery Skill (artillery, mounted, non-portable)
Simple Weapons Skill (knives, clubs, etc…)[/sblock]
I have defined the following Talents/Feats as Special Powers that you can purchase with points:
[sblock=Coordinate or Improved Aid Another]Talent for coordinating efforts of others d20 (3 pts)
* Use 1x/day per rung below d30 (d20=1)
* Allies within 30 feet can improve rung on skill checks (max of d10) if situation makes sense to aid another.
* Improving to d12, allows improving skills to max of d8[/sblock] [sblock=Jack of All trades]Talent as a jack of all trades d20 (3 pts)
* Can make all Craft skill checks untrained at current level
* Can be improved to d12 only[/sblock][sblock=Tactical Planning]Talent for tactical planning d20 (3 pts)
* Unlocks using Knowledge of Tactics to increase Skills of others 1 Rung (max d10) during an encounter for 1-3 rounds depending on level of success on Tactics Check (1-2=3 rnds/3-4=2 rnds/5-6=1 rnd).
* Improved to d12, durations double
* Improved to d10, allows improving skills to max d8[/sblock] [sblock=Exploit Weakness]Talent for exploiting weaknesses in foes d20 (3 pts)
* Use 1x/day at d30, 2x/day at d12, 4x/day at d10, 10x/day at d8, 16x/day at d6
* Improve rung on Combat Skill checks (max of d10) and effective damage
* Duration = 1 round squared per rung below d30: d20 = 1 round, d12 = 4 rounds, d10 = 9 rounds, d8 = 16 rounds.
* Improved to d10, allows improving skills to max d8
* Improved to d6, allows improving skill to max d6[/sblock][sblock=Trick]Talent for being Tricky d20 (3 pts)
* Unlocks using Persuasion to play a trick on a target, opposed check versus target’s Perception Trait.
* If the Persuasion check succeeds, the target cannot act for 1 round.[/sblock][sblock=Armor]Armor Proficiency d30 (untrained) – Default skill allows you to use light armor that can be used without the d20 ACP applying.
Better light armor needs Armor Proficiency d20->d8 to use shields and heavier armors. Effectively d8 means being able to use Full Platemail and a big shield.[/sblock][sblock=Double Tap]Double Tap d20 (3 pts)
* Can take 1 rung penalty on Fire arms skill to fire two bullets to potentially double damage on a hit.[/sblock][sblock=Evasion]Evasion (Requires: Acrobatics) d20 (3 pts)
* When checking to evade area attacks with Agility for taking only half damage, allows no damage on success. Substitute for Agility on defense against area attacks if better than Agility.
* Unlocks Improved Evasion once reaching d8, allows taking only half damage on failed Evasion checks.[/sblock][sblock=Additional Attacks]Secondary Attack d20
* Allows an additional attack per round at current rung, either with the same weapon in hand or carrying two weapons.[/sblock]
Costs to improve/pruchase are as follows:
Purchase Trained skill initially at d30 = 1 point
Improve from d30 to d20 = 2 points (also for initial training in Untrained Skills)
Improve from d20 to d12 = 3 points
Improve from d12 to d10 = 4 points
Improve from d10 to d8 = 5 points (only start with 2 skills/powers at d8)