View Full Version : Working on a Homebrew System, from scratch, and looking for input/playtesters

2013-08-28, 06:34 PM
So, a while back I made a "Legend of Zelda" PRPG (plagiarized role-playing game). It was just for my friends and family, so we used LoZ races and enemies, even some dungeon layouts. Good times. But now I want to make a system, even a world of my own, so I tweaked the mechanics that I'd used before to make them less combat/puzzle focused and more generic RP focused.

I want this to be simple, easy to use and learn, lighthearted and humorous, and enjoyable. A daunting task, if I do say so myself.

Here's what I have so far...
Core Mechanics
We're going to use only d6's. Screw it. A "check" will be 2d6+variables, with a common DC of about 10, and most variables being the appropriate attribute + relevant gear. A check is a critical success (or Crit) when the dice are doubles and also a success. The only default Crit is for attack rolls; all damage from a critical attack is considered lethal (which means you can't assign it to VP).
4 attributes, like ability scores: Physique (strength and agility), Fortitude (endurance and toughness), Wits (focus and intellect), Charisma (charm and grace). They each range from 1 to 6, and start at about 3. Racial modifiers adjust this to 2-4, unless you're playing a creeps and critters campaign, in which case it'd be 1-3.
Two variable point pools: Vitality (the sum of Physique + Fortitude) and Willpower (the sum of Wits + Charisma). Vital points (VP) are lost through strenuous physical action and extended combat. Will points (WP) are lost through concentrated mental actions and spellcasts.
Characters gain XP after every game, which they can use to buy increased attribute values (cost = 2 x rank to be gained). XP may also be used to increase skill bonuses (cost = rank to be gained, max = relevant attribute). Lastly, XP may be spent for divine intervention/enhanced luck, allowing you rerolls, sneak peeks, or other meta-game benefits.
Objects and creatures do not need to have specific weight values listed. They are instead grouped into categories based on size and approximate weight. Light objects weigh less than 1 stone (12 pounds) and can be easily held in one hand or thrown. Medium objects weigh up to 5 stone and can be carried in two hands with some effort. Heavy objects weight up to 25 stone, and cannot be carried normally, though they can be pushed. Massive objects weigh up to over 100 stone and cannot be pushed without special abilities, and Collosal objects weigh upwards of 600 stone and can rarely be moved except by the powerful forces of nature.
Characters receive two actions each turn. Attack, move, spell... anything you do is one action. Some actions are strenuous and cost an additional action each turn after being initiated. Swimming and climbing are the default strenuous actions, as well as carrying or pushing your maximum amount. Some creatures do not treat swimming and/or climbing as strenuous actions, and do not have to waste an extra action each turn to perform them.
Distance is measured in units of movement, with 1 unit being roughly the distance one can cover with a single action. So if a fish is swimming away from you, it will get 1 unit further away each round, since the fish is not performing a strenuous action like you are. Ranged weapons and spells have a distance in units of movement, roughly how many actions it would take you to get there.
Combat is based on clusters or groups, without the need to measure tactical spacing. When you enter a room, the PC's will all be in a group. The monsters may be divided into any number of groups. You are considered to be within melee range of anyone in your group, and one move action will disengage you from a group and allow you to engage another. When you attempt to move away from a group, every opponent you were engaged with gets one attack against you. This is the cost for disengaging. If a spell or ability would disengage you, then your enemies do not get this attack.
Skills and Abilities
Abilities are specific to the most relevant attribute, and you get one per rank in that attribute. So, Physique 3 and Fortitude 4 would have 3 phys abilities and 4 fort abilities. Abilities include feats, skill focuses, spells, special attacks... pretty much anything.
Skills are condensed and compiled as much as possible. Current skills (divided by attribute) are [Phys] Athletics, Melee, Marksmanship; [Fort] Defense, Recovery; [Wits] Knowledge, Magic, Burglary, Awareness, Tinkering, First Aid; [Char] Diplomacy, Deception, Bartering, Intimidation.
Spells will have a level of expertise needed to cast. A single ability gets you the training to cast 1st tier spells from every category. Additional abilities after this initial training increase the spell tier you can cast in that category.
Physical magic deals with conjuration and creation, alteration and transmutation. Anything that changes the physical qualities of an object or that creates a new physical object. Kinetic magic deals with energy, motion, and relocation. Astral deals with summoning, healing, necromancy, divination... you know, cleric-y stuff. Mental deals with illusions and enchantments, anything that messes with the victim's mind.
Spells will be versatile, allowing for a variety of uses, so as to cut down on the number of spells I need to write. This will also allow wizards to display an array of useful abilities early on, and will make them immensely useful afterward.
Characters can pay XP and money for training to add extra abilities or spells to their sheet. Spells and abilities can also be gained from artifacts found throughout the world.
Hazards and Status Afflictions
It is possible to over-exert yourself and go into negative values for VP and WP, but you are afflicted with severe penalties when you do. You cannot spend points while you are at 0, however, and cannot assign more damage to a point pool than your remaining points. Over-exertion occurs when you use a particularly costly ability (-2 or more VP/WP) while you have some points, but not enough to fully cover the cost. It can also occur when your points are low and an opponent uses a draining ability on you.
Wounds apply a penalty to all checks equal to the number of wounds you have. Five wounds is -5, three wounds is -3, etc. When you take normal damage, you can divide it between your VP and your wounds, provided you have the VP to spare. If an opponent hits you for 3 damage you could take 3 wounds, lose 3 VP, or 1 wound and 2 VP, or 2 wounds and 1 VP. Lethal damage is special, and always applies to wounds. Soak (if you have it) converts Lethal damage into normal, allowing you to mark it from your VP. For reference, the average sword attack will deal about 2-3 damage. Damage is assumed to be nonlethal, unless otherwise specified.
Disabled... I'm not sure if it'll be death, FF-style "KO'ed", or just unconsciousness, but you'll become disabled when your wounds exceed your Fortitude x 2. In higher level play, however, you'll likely become useless well before this, as the wound penalty will make actions difficult long before you become disabled.
Afflictions such as poison, paralysis, being lit on fire, stunned, etc... these will have a DC stated when they appear, such as "Paralysis [9]". At the end of your turn, you make one Recovery check with a penalty equal to the number of afflictions currently affecting you. Pick one affliction with a DC less than your result (if applicable) and remove it. Getting hit with a duplicate of an ongoing affliction will increase its DC by 1. Getting hit with a higher DC version of an ongoing affliction will replace the current DC with the higher value.
Inventory and Items
Gear will be really simplistic, applying small bonuses to attack or defense rolls, or adding extra damage or soak, etc. Enchanted items like bracers of lifting, boots of running, etc. will be found pretty quickly and frequently, like in Zelda. Other, more specific or magical items will usually take the form of jewelry, providing new abilities or strange powers. Spellbooks allow you to cast a few extra spells while you're holding them.
Item slots are Chest, Legs, Arms, Head, and Accessories (x4). You can change most worn items in 12 consecutive actions (6 to take off and put away), though you can change accessories in 1/3 this time (4 actions to change, 2 to take off and put away). It takes only 1 action to change the items you are holding with other items from your bag.

This is an ongoing process as I draft more and more. Any opinions and critiques are welcome, and once we've got enough down I'll probably run a PbP game in another part of this forum.

Your thoughts are appreciated.

2013-08-28, 07:11 PM
Looks good. No senseless complexity.

What defines ability to do perception checks? Stealth? Stealing? I usually expand charisma to include intuition for all creativity/right brain stuff and include that.

Why are diplomacy and healing combined? Ditto with marksmanship and defense?

Wounds making you less fit? That will get annoying. Realistic though.

What are the basics of your fantasy world? Setting and its themes should intertwine with mechanics.

By the way, here is my attempt at a Zelda RPG (http://demondungeons.wikispaces.com/home). Probably still slightly too complex for your tastes (and I don't blame you). In playtesting, health was too low. I think it handles items and increases in power fairly well, though. Anyway, steal as you wish from that.

2013-08-28, 07:53 PM
Ah, another system. Why do I enjoy seeing these?

Anyway, I think this is a pretty good start for a game; I'm curious as to how you'll deal with gear and advancement, but that's more of deal-with-later sort of deal anyway. Am reserving place for testing this thing, btw, so when the time comes...PM me.

2013-08-28, 08:40 PM
Sorry, the skills separated with a "/" are not combined. That designates the switch from Phys to Fort abilities. I'll edit the original post.
Perception falls under Awareness, which I'm guessing you overlooked on accident.
Advancement is on an experience cost basis. Get xp after game, spend on upgrading your attributes (and getting abilities when you do). Or, upgrade your skills, which is cheaper but doesn't return the nice abilities.
XP can also be spent for out-of game benefits, such as die re-rolls or first pick from the loot. (your dependence on gods and luck has dampened your ability to improve)
Gear is going to be really simplistic. You have armor? +1 defense and soak 1 lethal (converts it to regular). Shield? +1 defense. Sword? +1 attack, +1 lethal damage. Boots? good for you.
Magical items will be pretty standard, as in Zelda. You'll need them for doing anything that's out of the ordinary for a normal person. Some special abilities will mimic item effects, though. "Mighty strength" feat might allow you to lift "heavy" items, just like a bracer of strength.

In the zelda prpg I made, a lot of character customization came from magic rings the players made. I had a list of gems and their associated traits, and the players could forge rings of up to 3 gems. Different combinations yielded different bonuses. So, for example...
Ruby was health, Emerald was magic, and Obsidian was attack.
1 Ruby was +2 HP, 2 Ruby for +5, 3 Ruby for +9.
1 Obsidian was +1 to attack rolls, 2 for +2, and 3 for +4.
Ruby/Obsidian was a vampire effect, +1 attack and damage, +1 lifesteal. 2 ruby and 1 obsidian made it lifesteal 2, while 2 obsidian 1 ruby made it +2 atk/dam but still just 1 lifesteal.

Should I import this ring-forging mechanic to cover custom magic item creation? It would be expanded to cover "Gem-studded gear" which could take any slot. I would also expand the list of gems, but I'd ask for help filling in the combination tables (since my old laptop with the pre-filled tables died).

2013-08-28, 10:24 PM
A list of abilities by Attribute (WIP, obviously).

Brawler - You gain a +1 bonus to the Melee skill, and your unarmed attacks deal +1 damage.
* Iron Palm (requires Brawler) - Your fists are considered bludgeoning metal weapons for any purpose you desire. Your unarmed attacks gain Crit (Stun [9]) and deal up to 2 lethal damage instead of nonlethal.
Brutality - Spend 1 VP when making a melee attack. You gain +2 on that attack roll, and the attack deals +1 lethal damage.
* Merciless Brutality (requires Brutality) - When using Brutality, you deal +1 damage, and all damage dealt from that attack is Lethal. The brutal attack gains Crit (Dazed [8]).
Dire Effort - At the start of your turn, you may spend 1 VP and 1 WP. You gain 1 extra action during that turn, which stacks with the effects of slow and quicken.
Athletics Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Athletics skill. When making an Athletics check, reroll 1's.
* Fast Athlete (requires Athletics Focus) - You need only one action to swim or climb. While moving on land, you travel 1 unit further for every 2 actions you spend.
Melee Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Melee skill. When making a Melee check, reroll 1's.
* Violent Maneuvers (requires Melee Focus) - When making an opposed melee check for any type of combat maneuver (grapple, trip, etc.) you deal unarmed attack damage to your opponent if you win.
Marksman Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Marksman skill. When making a Marksman check, reroll 1's.
* Longshot (requires Marksman Focus) - Ranged attacks you make are accurate out to a 50% greater distance. Increase all ranged attack limits by 1/2.
Evasion - You may use your Physique for defense rolls instead of your Fortitude. Your defense rolls gain Crit (you may disengage from melee).
Bonk - You may choose to make all damage from your melee attack nonlethal, before making the attack roll. If you do, and the attack hits, the defender loses 2 WP and the attack deals 1 less damage.
Do You Even? - You may lift, carry, and push objects and creatures 1 size heavier than normal. Your Physique score is considered 1 higher to determine the distance you can throw light and medium objects.
Smashing Blows - Spend 1 VP when making a melee attack with a bludgeoning weapon. That attack deals +2 damage to objects and creates a strong Blasting effect. If you hit a creature with that attack, it has a 4/6 chance of becoming Stunned [8].
Juggernaut - When suffering from the Stunned or Immobilized conditions, you may spend 1 VP or WP at the start of your turn to ignore those afflictions for 1 turn and become Slowed instead. You gain a +1 bonus on Melee checks to oppose combat maneuvers.
Furious Charge - When you move to engage in melee, your next attack roll that turn gains +3 and deals +1 damage. That attack gains Crit (+1 damage)
Counterstrike - Your defense rolls gain Crit (make a melee attack against the attacking enemy, if possible). When you use the guard action, your next defense roll automatically crits.
Squire's Training - You may change worn gear and accessories in half the normal time. You may change held items as a free action on your turn.
Dual Wielder - When using more than one weapon in an attack, if every die shows the same result, you get a free extra attack with 1 of those weapons. This attack uses two dice, and can Crit as normal.

Dire Effort - At the start of your turn, you may spend 1 VP and 1 WP. You gain 1 extra action during that turn, which stacks with the effects of slow and quicken.
Stamina - Increase your Vitality by +1. You regain 2 VP at the start of every combat.
Pain Tolerance - You gain a +1 to all rolls while wounded. Your recovery rolls gain +1.
* Masochist (requires Pain Tolerance) - Whenever you take a new wound, you gain a temporary roll bonus equal to the number of wounds you possess. You may spend this temporary bonus on any roll of your choosing, but it expires after being spent. You may have multiple temporary bonuses, and may spend more than one on a single roll. These temporary bonuses expire at the end of your turn.
Armor Expert - While wearing armor, you gain +1 lethal soak and your defense rolls gain Crit (attacking creature becomes Dazed [7])
Walk it off - You heal from 1 wound at the end of every combat. You may spend an action and 1 WP in combat to heal from 1 wound.
Strength of Will - Your focus makes you harder to injure. When assigning nonlethal damage, you may subtract it from your WP as well as your VP.
Deep Drinker - You are highly resistant to toxins and the effects of alcohol. Reduce the chance to become afflicted by anything you ingest by 3/6. You gain a +1 bonus to melee attack rolls for every dose of alcohol you have consumed in a single scene. This bonus expires at the end of the scene, and is limited to +5.
Defense Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Defense skill. When making a Defense check, reroll 1's.
* Bunker Down (requires Defense Focus) - When using the guard action, make a Defense check with a +3 bonus. Until your next turn, this value is the minimum result for your Defense checks.
Recovery Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Recovery skill. When making a Recovery check, reroll 1's.
* Quick Recovery (requires Recovery Focus) - You make recovery checks to remove afflictions at the start of your turn, instead of the end. Your recovery checks gain +1.
Juggernaut - When suffering from the Stunned or Immobilized conditions, you may spend 1 VP or WP at the start of your turn to ignore those afflictions for 1 turn and become Slowed instead. You gain a +1 bonus on Melee checks to oppose combat maneuvers.
Desperation - Once per combat, when reduced to less than 2 VP by any source, you gain 2 bonus VP and 1 bonus WP. These bonus points expire at the end of your next turn.
Arcane Wards - Select one of the four schools of magic. Your Defense checks gain +2 against that school, and any chances to be afflicted by that school's spells are reduced by 1/6.
Blood Magic - You may spend VP or wounds instead of WP to cast your spells and use your racial abilities.
Tough Skin - You resist 1 damage from spells, and you gain +1 lethal soak while wearing no armor.
* Ironsides (requires Tough Skin) - You resist 1 damage from weapons, and you gain +1 lethal soak while wearing no armor.
Endurance - You gain +1 activity per day.
Last Stand - Once per day, when you would otherwise be KO'd, you remain conscious until the end of your next turn. You cannot be injured or spend VP during this time.

Apprentice Mage - You can cast 1st tier Astral, Kinetic, Mental, and Physical spells. You learn one 1st tier spell from each school.
* Specialist Mage (requires Apprentice Mage) - Select two spell schools (Astral, Kinetic, Mental, or Physical). You can cast 2nd tier spells from those schools. You learn one 2nd tier spell from each of those schools.
* Master Mage (requires Specialist Mage) - Select one of the two spell schools you have chosen with Specialist Mage. You can cast 3rd tier spells from that school. You learn one 3rd tier spell from that school.
Spell Transformation - When casting a spell, you may have that spell function as a spell from any other spell school whose spells of that tier you can cast. Any bonuses or penalties you have in the new school apply instead of the spell's original school.
Spell Superiority - Select one spell you can cast, or your racial ability. You gain 1 WP after successfully using that spell or ability. You gain a +1 on any check you make as part of that spell or ability.
Blood Magic - You may spend VP or wounds instead of WP to cast your spells and use your racial abilities.
Magic Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Magic skill. When making a Magic check, reroll 1's.
* Counterspell (requires Magic Focus) - When an opponent casts a spell that would affect you or any target adjacent to you, you may make a Magic skill check as well as the normal target's Defense check. Any target of the opponent's spell may choose to use their own Defense result or your Magic result, whichever is higher.
Knowledge Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Knowledge skill. When making a Knowledge check, reroll 1's.
* Occult Expert (requires Knowledge Focus) - When you successfully use a Knowledge check to identify a creature or object, you also identify every ability that they possess or every spell that it contains.
First Aid Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the First Aid skill. When making a First Aid check, reroll 1's.
* Medic (requires First Aid Focus) - When using the First Aid skill to remove afflictions, you include any Recovery bonuses the target possesses. When using the First Aid skill to cure wounds, you cure 1 extra wound. The maximum number of extra wounds you may cure in this way is equal to the number of ranks you possess in First Aid.
Burglary Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Burglary skill. When making a Burglary check, reroll 1's.
* Backstab (requires Burglary Focus) - While opponents are unaware of you, your attacks automatically Crit and gain Bleed [10].
Awareness Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Awareness skill. When making an Awareness check, reroll 1's.
* Hunter's Sight (requires Awareness Focus) - In dark or dim light, you can see a number of distance units equal to your ranks in Awareness, rather than the normal 1 or 2 units. You can easily perceive the location and presence of creatures within 2 units through any barrier thinner than a brick wall, though you cannot identify the creatures' race, items, or features.
Tinkering Focus - You gain a +2 bonus to the Tinkering skill. When making a Tinkering check, reroll 1's.
* Trap Master (requires Tinkering Focus) - When you successfully disable a trap with the Tinkering skill, you may either salvage components worth 1/2 its cost or you may re-set the trap to activate under new parameters. Salvaged traps are destroyed, and salvaged parts may include usable items.
Iron Will - You gain a +2 bonus on checks against the Mental spell school. The difficulty to recover from the Dazed, Berserk, and Confused afflictions is reduced by 1 after each failed Recovery check you make.
Fragile Focus - At the start of every scene, you gain the Focused status until your first failed check.

2013-09-03, 03:27 AM
So, while I was unable to connect to the internet, I went ahead and typed up the character sheet in Microsoft Word. If anyone knows how I can get it uploaded so you can see it, that'd be great. If so, future updates will likely be posted in the same way.

2013-09-03, 05:20 PM
I think using the gems thing would be pretty interesting; an even better idea might be to have GMs require the players to experiment with combinations to figure the system out, although it ought to be useful no matter what they get out of it.

Looking over the skill list again, it seems that Physique and Fortitude are somewhat lacking in skills; this may be due to the fact that they serve very clear functions, and therefore their abilities might be a bit on the strong side to compensate, but if not it may be best to throw in one of two more skills for them.

Beyond that...doing good, dude, doing good.

2013-09-03, 08:20 PM
Physique and Fortitude have fewer skills because the skills they do have are so great. Sure, a knowledge or tinkering check might make a certain challenge much easier, but health/status recovery/hitting things are pretty high on the charts.
Go with a high Phys if you want to be a scrapper, high Fort if you want to be a tank, high Wits if you want to be a caster or skill monkey, or high Cha if you want to be a wildcard/party face.
The current arrangement mimics DnD to an extent. Skill monkeys will have less combat prowess than a fighter.

So, I'm typing off-line and making pretty good progress. I have character creation guidelines and character sheets up and running, I just don't know how to show you.
I'm starting to work on races. Which, admittedly, should probably wait till after spells and items, but... what the heck, right?

Regarding races, I want to stay far away from Tolkien tropes and standard fantasy settings. I'll keep humans, even though they're really bland, but lets avoid elves and dwarves if we can.
Here's what I'm thinking
Humans - No modifiers. +10% starting wealth, +1 favored skill.
Racial ability: Really boring. Cost 1 WP. You are far too boring to be guilty, or threatening, or interesting really. Until you give them a good reason to believe otherwise, creatures believe you are harmless, innocent, and not the droids they are looking for. This is useful for getting aggressive creatures to stop chewing on your really boring armor, to prevent cops from arresting you, and to go unnoticed in a really boring crowd. This effect expires when you leave the scene. If a creature wants to resist this effect, and has good reason to find you interesting, they can subconsciously spend 2 WP and ignore this ability for the rest of the day.
Description: Humans breed like rabbits compared to most other races, and their love of exploration and travel has scattered them a lot further across the map than any other culture. Humans appear between 5 and 6 feet tall, with varying builds ranging from obese to anorexic. They look like... humans. Tribal and religious markings are uncommon among humans, and tend to take the form of tattoos or piercings.

Vulcans - Fort +1, Wits -1. -10% starting wealth, +1 bonus to Defense and Intimidate. Vulcans resist damage from fire and earth magic (-2) but take extra damage from ice magic (+1 lethal). Vulcans deal +1 damage with their fists and are considered both objects and creatures.
Racial ability: Smelter's Blast. Cost 1 WP and 1 VP. You channel the wrath of your uncle, Vesuvius, and leave destruction in your wake. Every creature and object adjacent to you takes 2 lethal damage from fire and a blasting effect. Each target has a 2/6 chance to be afflicted with Burning [9]. Your Vulcan bonus fist damage is lethal fire damage for the rest of the scene, and creatures you wound with it have a 2/6 chance to gain burning [9].
Description: The volatile Vulcans are a powerful and frightening race the first time they are encountered. But once one learns to look past the smoldering exterior and the brimstone breath, they'll realize that most Vulcans are quite peaceful and friendly... at least until provoked. Vulcans can range in height from 4 feet to 7, and they tend to have stocky, solid builds. Vulcans look like animated volcanoes, hollow golems of blackened-brown stone with a reddish-orange glow from inside. Tribal and religious markings for the Vulcans are common, and usually involve carving sigils and crests into their stony exterior.

Beastlord - Phys +1, Char -1. -20% starting wealth, +1 bonus to Athletics and Awareness. Beastlords can speak to spirits, but cannot make them manifest. A Beastlord gains Quick Recovery as a free ability.
Racial ablility: Wild Totem. A Beastlord forms empathic bonds with the spirits of animals he admires. He may have 1 such bond per rank of Charisma he possesses, and he begins play with 1 bond. The Beastlord may renounce his bonds freely in order to gain new ones. Channeling a bond takes 2 actions and costs 1 WP. After channeling, the beastlord gains 1 bonus rank in an attribute specific to the animal of that bond, and gains any ability from that rank which that animal possesses, following all prerequisites. These benefits expire at the end of the scene, and he cannot channel the same bond more than once in a scene.
Description: Beastlords are a feral, wild race that tower over humans, and occasionally over Vulcans as well. They tend to keep to the forests, although Beastlords with a love for exotic animal life can be found in nearly every environment. Beastlords stand nearly 7 feet tall on average, and have long arms and legs. Their bodies are inherently athletic and lean, and usually covered in an odd mixture of fur and scales. Beastlords have large, pronounced tusks jutting from their jaws, sharp fingernails, and occasionally small horns near or around their ears. Their eyes tend to be green or yellow, and often slitted like a cat's. Beastlords frequently mark their skin with warpaint and craft clothing and garments with the skins of animals they form bonds with. As the Beastlord grows older, his body entwines with the sinew of the hides he wears, making the patchwork garb as much a part of himself as his own tusks.

Marrowforged - Wits +1, Phys -1. Normal starting wealth, Magic as a favored skill. Marrowforged can cast Astral spells of 1 tier higher than normal, and can at least cast tier 1 Astral spells. Marrowforged gain Blood Magic as a free ability. Their bodies deteriorate more quickly than normal; the Marrowforged begin Bleeding [10] when their VP is reduced to less than 1.
Racial ability: Commanding Bones. The Marrowforged body constantly produces small, fragmented bone chips in the arms, shoulders, and legs. With 2 actions and 2 VP, the Marrowforged can consolidate these chips into armor and weapons. After doing so, the Marrowforged gains 3 points he can distribute between defense and soak as he sees fit, and he creates one melee weapon which deals +1 damage over its normal traits. Alternatively, he can consolidate these chips into 3 short javelins, each of which deals +1 lethal damage over its normal traits. These benefits do not expire until the Marrowforged wishes them to, but he cannot use this ability while in possession of any of his bonework items. Bonework rots away at the end of the scene if not in the possession of the Marrowforged.
Description: Thin and gaunt, the Marrowforged body is rarely built for combat or heavy lifting. Marrowforged tend to be a little shorter than humans, though they can adjust their own size by nearly a foot by growing or reducing their skeletal frame. Marrowforged need a constant supply of proteins and calcium to survive and use their abilities, and eat a surprising amount of food (bones and all) for their size. Marrowforged skin tends to be pale and usually has a reddish or violet hue. Their eyes vary wildly in color, and they tend to have sharp, angular features. Marrowforged tribal markings are rare, though creating bonework amulets and accessories in honor of their faith is a common practice.

Tidekeepers - Char +1, Fort -1. Normal starting wealth, +1 favored skills of your choice. Tidekeepers have a vigorous immune system but a poor digestive system, and become Sickened [10[ if they consume any meat or alcohol. A Tidekeeper gains Crit (remove all lower rated afflictions) on his Recovery checks. Tidekeepers resist damage from ice and fire magic (-1) but take extra damage from electrical and Astral magic (+1 lethal). Swimming is not a strenuous activity for the Tidekeeper.
Racial ability: Extract Pollution. Cost 2 VP. The Tidekeeper touches a creature and makes a First Aid check. The Tidekeeper takes on any number of afflictions currently affecting the touched creature, though the touched creature still suffers from those afflictions. The difficulty ratings of the afflictions remaining on the touched creature are reduced by 3, or by 5 if the Tidekeeper's First Aid check was 10 or more.
Description: Tidekeepers are smaller than other races, standing around 5 feet tall, with pale blue skin and green eyes in almost every member of their species. Their fingers tend to be slightly webbed, as are their feet, making boots and gloves uncomfortable. Tidekeepers must stay hydrated, and drink far more water than any other race while above ground. Tidekeepers revere nature over faith, and their most common markings tend to be elegant tribal scripts branded into their flesh with the poisonous barbs of an exotic underwater plant. Most Tidekeepers gain these scripts as a sort of ward or family blessing before leaving the water to explore the lands above.

2013-09-03, 09:34 PM
Cool, more stuff.

Glad to know my initial impressions were on the money about Physique and Fortitude; makes a lot of sense.

Right now the races seem a bit confused as to what mythos they want to join; balance and such seems good, though, and flavor will come as the game matures (like wine, from what I understand.)

Now, however, I will end with a submission. Yeah, weren't expecting that, were ya?

Here it is, shrouded by the mists of spoiler tags...
Seismoids - Phys +1, Cha -1. -10% starting wealth. +1 bonus to Athletics and Defense. Seismoids also absorb an additional 1 lethal damage dealt by non-smashing weapons due to their rocky skin.
Racial Ability:Seismic Wave.Costs 1 WP. You clap your hands, stomp your foot or some other hard contact with the wall or floor, combining your raw power with your connection to the fabric of Gaea. All creatures within 2 units of you are allowed to try to dodge this ability; if they cannot/do not, they end up knocked on to the ground and stunned (6). In addition, any creatures right next to you when you use this ability are knocked back a unit and are stunned (9) instead.

Something like this, right? Essentially, these guys are sentient rock golems; think The Thing, except brown, a bit less wide, a bit taller and made from proper rocks. They were made by an earth deity/geomancer/whoever has rock powers as guards; eventually, a pair of them got free, and now they're pretty common around the world's rock-friendly environs. Is it balanced?

2013-09-04, 10:44 AM
Awesome! I like it a lot, though I'm curious about the Athletics bonus. Athletics is used mostly for climbing/swimming/jumping, so to see a racial bonus on a rock golem is interesting.
Regarding balance, there are a few issues, because I don't think I've explained all the mechanics yet. 1 unit of distance is about 20 to 30 feet. So that wave is a massive area. "Absorbing" lethal damage would be either soak (convert to nonlethal) or resist (take less damage overall). And the "al creatures are allowed to try and dodge" would be best rephrased as "Make an attack roll against __ creatures. Any creature failing his defense roll is..."
Now, I was stupid and forgot to post descriptions of the races. The Seismoids and Vulcans are very similar. The Vulcans are like hollow, blackened-brown golems with fire and smoke inside. That's why they are considered both objects and creatures.
Could you re-phrase the Seismoids to be more desert/sand themed when you update their phrasing?

And here's the starting list of status afflictions and status effects.
Slowed: You may take only 1 action per round. If you become Quickened, both effects immediately end. When performing strenuous activities, you move 1 unit of distance every other turn.
Dazed: You roll 1 less die when making checks. You cannot use Crits.
Stunned: You cannot take any actions.
Immobilized: You cannot take any action which would move you any distance. You may still attack and cast spells.
Poisoned: You take 1 point of nonlethal damage at the end of your turn, prior to the recovery check.
Burning: You take 1 point of lethal damage at the end of your turn, prior to the recovery check.
Bleeding: You take 1 point of lethal damage at the end of your turn, prior to the recovery check.
Berserk: You cannot disengage from any combat, and must spend every possible action to hit something with your fists or whatever weapon you are holding. If no active enemy is within sight, you must attack the nearest active creature.
Confused: Your perceptions of friend and foe are reversed. You immediately begin attacking your former friends, and defending your former enemies.

Quickened: You gain an extra action every round. If you become slowed, both effects immediately end.
Warded: You resist 1 point of damage from any spell that would harm you. The chance to be afflicted by spells that target you are reduced by 1/6.
Focused: Roll 1 extra die when you make a check. Choose whichever two you prefer to be your result, after seeing any opposed results.