01 September, 2014

Object of the Princeling's Quest

In "The Scavenger's Tale", the scavenger keeps rescuing a young man who is looking for a princess to rescue. Since the scavenger is that princess, and since she keeps rescuing him, maybe be should show an image of the "idealised princess" that the  young man is looking for.

A little bit Disney, a bit not...using exactly the same female stock model who I've been using for all the scavenger shots so far.

30 August, 2014

Mutant Size Discrepancy

I'm really getting stumped on the disparate sizes of potential mutant animals, with characters potentially ranging in size from smaller than mice to larger than elephants, how do we address the issue of characters hitting varying sized characters (and the respective damage their might do)...and when I do this, how do I keep it from getting too crunchy when the rest of the game is predominately narrative in spirit.

At this stage I'm thinking of allocating a limited "size class" mechanism.

Each character has a size class from 0 to 14 (typically), where 7 is a regular human (50-100kg, 1.5m-2m) and every increment basically halves or doubles the weight (and modifies height by about 30%). The whole system is logarithmic.

In this way we can compare the difference between character sizes, and the same effects apply. A size class 3 character facing a size class 6 character (3 levels of difference), works much the same as a size class 6 character facing a size class 9 character, or a size class 10 character facing a size class 13 character (both of these are also 3 levels of difference).

If we use the FUBAR system of combat, three levels of damage neutralise a character (completely removing an unnamed character, or temporarily paralysing a named character), and six levels eliminate a named character from the story completely.

Perhaps a successful hit could score an automatic level of additional damage for every difference in size (or subtract levels of damage if targeting larger opponents).

Perhaps we simply offer the chance of an extra level of damage after a successful hit if a larger attacker rolls a d6 and gets a score less than the difference in "size class". Or they lose a level of damage if a smaller attacker rolls less than the difference.

I'm not sure, it feels a bit messy.

29 August, 2014

Mutant Morality

One of the reasons I love roleplaying games is the ability to get into different headspaces. Forget different races, different cultures are more interesting, different forms of morality that underpin the actions of a character.

This is one of the reasons why I like the Sabbat in Vampire: the Masquerade. They don't bother pretending to be human anymore, so they adopt new methods to transcend their humanity and the beast that gnaws at their soul.

For this reason I'm thinking of including a crude morality system in the mutant game "Other Strangeness", something that mechanically makes players think in a non-human way. These characters aren't human, and many players I've encountered in conventions (and ongoing LARP chronicles) over the years don't really understand the way to get into an inhuman mindset...but mechanical prompts help a bit. Such mechanical prompts may seem a bit forced at times, but they do their job.

I've been trying to think of good methodologies to base morality forms on.

One group might base their morality on the notion that they bear the legacy of ancient Egyptian deities, perhaps desiring to lead cults of human followers.

Another group might follow tenets of 'transhumanism', constantly pushing the envelope of mutation and evolution.

One might consider themselves guardian angels of humanity, eternally separate but fated to help when they can.

Mutant insects might have a hive mentality that rewards working for the common good, but makes independent choices difficult.

How do these forms of morality affect the characters? How do characters with different morality forms interact with one another?

I'm thinking back to the 'pack dynamic' in the Sabbat, where clans give powers, paths define morality, and packs have a quasi-mystical bond. The difference being that in this game, the mutant animal type gives the powers, and this undefined criteria defines morality.

It's just a fragment of an idea at this stage, but maybe something that could be further developed.

28 August, 2014

Getting closer

My post apocalyptic scavenger has been through a few more refinements today, and I think I'm getting closer to something that might be workable.

There will be a bit more tweaking, perhaps playing with proportions a bit to get a more manga/anime vibe. Maybe playing with shading techniques. 

We'll see how things develop.

Post Apocalyptic Storybook Character (Take 2)

The story takes place in the world of "Walkabout". The premise behind this character is a scavenger of non-descript gender who does steretypically "male" things, like rescuing the "macho soldier in distress", it's only at the end of the book that we see this character is in fact female.

So we need the twist at the end not to be pre-empted too much by the shapeliness of the figure...

...the following are some more concept sketches.

It's clear she needs more belts, webbing, storage packs, and other padding to bulk out her frame and cover up the curves for this to work. On the other hand, she needs to be quick, agile, and combat ready in the story.

More sketches to come.

27 August, 2014

Another bit for that side project

Quick question without further context...

What gender is this character?

26 August, 2014

A Fox's Guide to Geomorphs (Part 14)

This is a combination post, describing how geomorphs might be appropriate to use in the Vulpinoid Studios game "Voidstone Chronicles".

In the 12th part of this series we looked at ways to break a larger hexagon into smaller hexes, and this is basically how I generate quick battle terrain for Voidstone Chronicles. Two or three large hexes are put together, one or two of these might have a hill (either in the middle, at the middle of an edge, or focused on the corner of the hex). This gives us four possible phases ("plain", "left hill", "right hill", or "mid hill"). 

The setting for Voidstone Chronicles is a series of floating discs drifting and orbiting in the eye of a massive storm, and those discs have various sizes. Some small ones might be the equivalent of one large hex across, the majority would be the equivalent of two or three hexes across, and some of the largest might be four or five hexes across. But each battle sequence only covers one to three adjacent hexes. To create the full variety of combat spaces available in the game I include a couple of "edge" hexes, with round sides to show where the floating disc ends (yes, it's possible to push someone off the edge in this game)

In this case, I've moulded up my geomorph hexagons from plaster, and carved a hexagon grid on them. It only takes about six of these moulded hexagons to give the full range of possible terrain variations that might exist in a conflict zone (and about four extra edge pieces just in case a conflict occurs on the edge of a disc.

I could customise the geomorphs with permanently placed trees and buildings, but then I'd probably have to build dozens of discs, and for convenience of storage it's easier to have a low number of discs and an assortment of terrain elements to simply place on them for added interest and strategic value.