Sunday, December 27, 2020

GLOG Class: Ranger

I've been watching Lord of the Rings again.

GLOG Class: the Ranger

A: Whisperer, Parts Unknown, Wild Ways
B: Be Silent That You May Hear, Old Bones
C: Uncanny Instinct, Walk Unseen
D: Folk Unknown, Voices Forgotten

Starting skills [d3]: 1 = child of a woods-witch, 2 = (in)famous outlaw, 3 = latent elf or fae blood

Starting equipment: a hooded cloak in a subtle color & style, well-worn boots, a brace of knives, a sturdy backpack, and a weapon of your choice. 

(A) Whisperer
Animals always react better to you: you know how to soothe them, how to guide them, and how to frighten them. You can tell what an animal wants by examining it for a few moments, and what it very much doesn't want by studying it for a few moments more. You're also preternaturally good at picking out the tracks, markings, and remains of animals, and can always tell when you've entered one's territory.

You can also talk to certain animals. Roll 2d6 and pick one:
  1. Cats (and a few other felines)
  2. Crows (and most other corvids)
  3. Horses (and most other equines)
  4. Moths (and a few other lepidopterans)
  5. Mice (and a few other rodents)
  6. Snakes (and no other reptiles)
You can speak to these animals and be spoken to in turn. Animals don't speak like humans, they're less grammatical and structured, but you can understand them nonetheless. (Bear in mind, however, that most animals, even ones that can talk, don't usually want much to do with humans.)

Every time you finish an adventure/arc/chapter, roll another 2d6 and pick another animal.

(A) Parts Unknown
You know the path to all the major locations in the world: huge cities, mighty rivers, vast deserts, mountain ranges—all of the large and important and exciting places. You may or may not have been there before, but you know the way there regardless.

You know the path to about half the medium-sized locations in the world: forests, lakes, towns, ruins, bogs—places that are important to the regions around them, but perhaps less known on a worldly scale.

You know the path to 2d4 minor locations: individual hills, clearings, ponds, trails, villages, caves—all of the oddball random locations that make up an actual tract of land. Every template, you learn the way to another 2d4 minor locations—maybe ones you've visited as part of the campaign, maybe not.

Once you've been to a place in-session, you know the path back (unless, perhaps, it's a location that magically moves, like a flying castle or lake-that-crawls). 

If you know the path to a location, there's a [templates]-in-6 chance that you know of a secret entrance, hidden pathway, or other means of ingress, egress, or traversal through the location. Sewers, goat-trails, trapdoors, tunnels, and so on. 

For medium locations, I'd just assign a 50% chance to any given location the Ranger actively wants to go to. For minor locations, I'd make the Ranger choose the first handful with the GM's help at chargen, and then let the rest be retroactively declared as needed. The GM basically always has veto power over this if it really comes down to it, but be generous.

(A) Wild Ways
Every template, roll 1d12 and gain that associated way. If you roll a repeat, take your choice of the one above or below it.

(B) Be Silent That You May Hear
If you stand silent and still for a moment, you can hear everything within a hundred feet of you, down to noises as quiet as a whisper. If you stand silent and still for an entire minute, you can hear the difference between a dark room that is silent and a dark room where someone is not making a sound

If you press your ear to the earth for a minute or two without speaking, you can hear anything the earth feels within [templates] miles of you. The earth feels things like the hammer of footfalls, the dance of a stream, the gnawing of roots, the creak of a glacier, or the rattle of bones coming alive; it usually doesn't feel the drone of voices. 

(B) Old Bones
Once per day, if you rub shoulders and stamp your feet while ruefully gazing at the sky, you can ask the GM what the weather will be for the next [templates] days; the GM will answer you truthfully.

Alternatively, you can ask when the next occurrence of a given weather pattern (rain, fog, snow, a cloudless hot day, etc.) will occur; the GM will answer you truthfully. 

Alternatively alternatively, you can ask what the weather is at any point in the world right this instant; the GM will answer you truthfully. 

(C) Uncanny Instinct
You know wizards, witches, spirits, faeries, and shapeshifters (like werewolves) on sight, no matter what form they take.

If you stop and smell the air, you can pick out the distinct scents of: curses, blessings, illusions, death, madness, and gold. How far away this works from is based on the intensity and the wind, as with any other smell.

If you taste the blood of a creature, you can tell its broad type (say, an undead from a dragon, but not a zombie from a revenant). You can also tell how long the blood has been there, and whether it was spilled by accident or in earnest.

(C) Walk Unseen
If you draw up the hood of your cloak, you can move without being spotted. Choose [templates] of the following that are true:
  • You won't be seen
  • You won't be heard
  • You won't leave tracks, scent, or trail
  • You can move at a full pace
  • You can do it with your weapons out and ready
  • Your comrades can still see and hear you
Whichever ones you don't choose aren't true, so you will leave a trail or you can be seen or you have to stow your weapons, or whatever. 

(D) Folk Unknown
You know the path to people in the same way you know the way to locations. If you set out to find someone whose path you know, you'll always find them eventually. 

That said, the major-to-minor ratio of people you know the path to is reversed: that is, you know the way to every minor individual, about half of the medium-importance people, and 2d4 major people.

Every time you finish an adventure/arc/chapter, add another 2d4 major people you know the path to.

As with locations, if you know someone's path, there's a 4-in-6 chance that you know a secret about them—but people and locations have different secrets.

As with locations, knowing the way to someone doesn't mean you always know where they are, or that you could draw a map to their location—just that if you set out to find them, you will. If you need some secrets for people to have, use the Middleman's list.

(D) Voices Forgotten
You can talk to non-animal things as if they were animals. Roll 2d6 and pick one:
  1. Stones (and most other minerals)
  2. Trees (and a few other plants)
  3. Rivers (and most other flowing bodies of water)
  4. The wind (and a few other weather patterns)
  5. Roads (and most other established pathways)
  6. Fire (and no other chemical processes)
You can speak to these things and be spoken to in turn. The secret language of things is even stranger and less human than the words of animals, but you can still understand their voices.

Every time you finish an adventure/arc/chapter, roll another 2d6 and pick another thing.

A quick note on speaking with animals and things: pay attention to how exactly that speaking process works, and consult with your GM. Maybe you mimic the call of crows and the whistling of the wind; maybe the elves taught the world to speak, and so you speak elvish; maybe when you speak it takes the form of prayers, and the G_ds bless you that you might be understood. Whatever it is, speaking to non-human things is important, and you should put some thought into how you do so.

Wild Ways
Rangers know things about the world, things that other folk simply don't. Maybe it's smoke and mirrors, maybe it's genuine magic, maybe it's just being lightning quick.

Every level, roll 1d12 and gain the associated way. If you roll a repeat, take your choice of the one above or below it. 
  1. Walks-Upon-Winter
    You don't sink in snow, regardless of your weight; you simply walk across the top of it as if it was solid earth.
  2. Skin-As-a-Snake
    In a minute, you can change your appearance to be as dirty or as clean as you please. Mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, and other such pests will never bother you, unless you want them to.
  3. Friend-to-Fair-Folk
    Faeries and spirits take a liking to you; this means they're flirty and charming and happy to please you, but also take insults and offense far more seriously.
  4. Breathes-Without-Air
    You can hold your breath for [templates] × 3 minutes. If you need to, you can take a breath only once per minute and still act normally.
  5. Slumbers-On-Foot
    For [templates] hours per day, you can walk while you sleep. You still won't hear or see anything, and someone will need to hold your hand to get around corners, but you can sleep while walking.
  6. Speaks-Many-Tongues
    You know a dozen words in a dozen languages; if you try your hardest to be understood in foreign lands but still can't, folk tend to take pity on you.
  7. Remains-Always-Ready
    If you take a minute to hide a knife on your person, it cannot be found by anyone you don't want it to be.
  8. Sees-No-Sunlight
    If you draw your hood up, you can hide your face from unfriendly eyes: they still see you, it's not as if you are actively hiding your face, but they can't get any clear details or distinctive features.
  9. Drinks-As-a-Camel
    You can go three times as long without water as a regular person, but have to drink three times as much water beforehand and afterwards. 
  10. Keeps-Many-Secrets
    If you encounter tracks or remains (fur, feathers, scales, etc.) from one of the animals you can Whisper to, you can ask those tracks a single question as you were speaking to the animal directly.
  11. Heeds-Not-the-Bounds
    You can swim and climb as quickly and easily as you run. If underwater or hanging vertically (from, say, a tree or cliffside) any abilities that take a minute or more only take half as long.
  12. Bears-the-Wilds
    When you walk into town while visibly wearing your cloak and bearing arms, folk will give you a free meal, a mug of beer, a corner to sleep in, and take care to be genial and courteous or to leave you alone entirely (your choice).

"Aragorn-the-class," basically, to go with the Sage as Gandalf-the-class. Things that this class doesn't do but I kind of wish it did, but it's already long as hell:
  • Heal people in witch-y natural ways (the hands of a healer are the hands of a king, etc., etc.)
  • Fight good
  • The thing where Aragorn does CSI: Middle-Earth outside of Fangorn
  • Probably some other cool ranger stuff I'm forgetting
Anyway, yeah. There's like a billion ranger classes out there anyway, and I couldn't think of a good name for this one other than "ranger."

Oh yeah, and the empty room/room that is silent is ripped straight out of deus' Zouave. It's just too good to pass up.

Let me know if you get a chance to test it out.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

GLOG Class: Xeromancer Wizard

"Inhuman solitude made of sand and G_d."

GLOG Class: Xeromancer

Art by Ikarus, as it says, but I can't find any reference or links to them.

The desert draws magicians like moths to a flame, and xeromancers are no exception. These are magicians who strive for mastery over the physical elements of the desert: heat, sand, water, wind. They are strange, reclusive magicians, ones more at home on the endless dunes than in cities or academies. That said, xeromancers are highly sought-after as ship's canters, and can always find work out on the Seas.

Perk: messages-in-a-bottle that you send will always reach their recipient, but it will take 1d100 days. Messages-in-a-bottle sent to you will always reach you, though they too take 1d100 days.

Drawback: you cannot bathe in water, cross running water, or set foot in the ocean. If you do, your flesh will wash off like so much sand.

Starting skill [d3]: 1 = outcast prophet; 2 = child stolen by a psammead; 3 = genuine desert sorcerer

Starting gear: a scarf to hide your face and eyes, two skins, two random xeromancer items, and a long twisty ragged cloak bleached to the color of sand.


Roll 1d10 twice at level 1, then once every additional level; if you get repeats, roll again. At level 4 (D Templates), you get to pick spell #11 or #12. You can find more spells via scrolls, tablets, etc.
  1. Siphon
    R: touch; T: [sum] × 5' radius of sand; D: [dice] hours
    You can instantly shift the temperature of a circle of sand by up to [sum] × 10 degrees, up or down. This will have different effects based on the sand you're on.
  2. Hollow-Heft
    R: shouting distance; T: [dice] creatures; D: [sum] minutes
    The target's weight increases by either 10x or is reduced to 1/10th. Hostile creatures can make a save against this effect.
  3. Zephyr
    R: [sum] ×10'; T: a line, starting from you; D: [dice] × 10 minutes
    When you open your mouth, a blast of high-speed wind comes out in a line [dice] × 2' wide. Any creature caught in the blast of wind can make a save to not be hurled backwards.
  4. Forecast
    R: sight; T: the sky; D: [dice] days
    You know what the weather will be up to 24 hours from now. You can shift the daily d100 weather table roll up to [sum] amount during the duration.
  5. Well
    R: touch; T: a container, like a barrel or skin; D: instantaneous
    All water within a [sum] × 100' radius is instantly drawn into the container you touch (potentially overflowing). 
  6. Geyser
    R: shouting distance; T: a spot in the sea; D: [dice] rounds
    A geyser of sand bursts from the surface, [sum]' wide and [sum] × 10' high, launching anything beneath it upwards.
  7. Sculpt
    R: touch; T: a bunch of sand; D: [sum] minutes
    You sculpt a bunch of sand into a structure no larger than a [dice] × 10' cube. For the duration, the sand is magically held together; after the duration expires, gravity takes effect, and the sculpture will endure only as well as it naturally would.
  8. Endure
    R: touch; T: [dice] people; D: [sum] hours
    The targets do not need to drink, eat, or sleep (and are unaffected by having already not done so); they are immune to heatstroke and exhaustion; their speed is not halved when travelling by sandshoe.
  9. Dive
    R: touch; T: self + [dice-1] people; D: [sum] × 10 minutes
    You gain psammitic gills (so you can breathe sand); you can swim in any sand at standard speed; you gain sandsense out to [dice] × 100'; you are immune to the extreme heat of the depths of the sandy seas.
  10. Glide
    R: self; T: self; D: [sum] minutes
    You can glide along the surface of the sand at [dice] times normal speed. Anyone within [dice] × 10' on either side of you must save or be blinded for 1d6 rounds as you spray sand at them.
  11. Storm
    R: [sum] miles; T: self; D: [sum] hours
    You conjure a huge sandstorm: you yourself are immune to its effects (but not your ship or crew). The sandstorm stays centered on you, and allows you to fly at double speed. Sandstorms will vary based on the kind of sand they are composed of, but are always exceedingly dangerous.
  12. Transmute
    R: self; T: sand, earth, or water; D: permanent
    Within a [sum]-mile radius, you transmute the terrain around you into: any of the seven sands, solid earth, or pure fresh water. 

Xeromancer Mishaps:
1: you spend 1d6 rounds vomiting sand, a couple cubic feet of it per round—it's not the kind of sand you're currently on, though, roll 1d6 to see what it is.
2: for (secretly rolled) 1d6 days, you count as weighing 5x for the purposes of determining whether you sink in sand.
3: you and anyone (but not anything) inside a 10' radius burst into flame; you suffer 1d6 damage per round until you extinguish yourself.
4: you attract the attention of the desert: roll on the phenomena encounter chart.
5: for 24 hours, you cannot see, hear, or speak unless you are actively touching sand.
6: for 24 hours, any water you touch turns to sand; you must pass a save vs. curse to drink a skin.

Xeromancer Dooms:
1: The Seas swallow you for a time. You sink into the sand and are buffeted around its swirling depths for 24 hours, at which point you are spat back up 1d6-1 miles away, in a random direction.
2: The Seas demand you take no sustenance other than from them. All water within 1 mile instantly evaporates.
3: The Seas claim you as their own. A sandstorm immediately rises, centered on you, and you transformed into a being of pure sand. If the wind blows at you at any time from this day forth, you will simply crumble away.

Xeromancer Items:
  1. Vial of holy water. Doubly impactful in the desert.
  2. Red silk sash. Worn by merchant-princes and high priests; quite valuable.
  3. String of shark teeth. Each has a little rune carved into it. Quite deadly if used as a garotte.
  4. A live cobra. Kept inside a clay pot; not particularly friendly. HD1, 1d8 venom damage. 2 slots.
  5. Dual scimitars. Light & elegant, matched to fit into a single sheath. 1d6 damage, 1 slot each.
  6. A gnarled wooden staff. Quite rare for the Seas, given the wood scarcity. 1d8 damage, 2 slots.
  7. Philosophical texts. Ascetism, theogony, divine geometry. Probably worth something to the right person.
  8. Flask of tequila. It's good tequila, too, the kind that's hard to find these days.
  9. Pair of sandproof goggles. Made of crystal, leather, and glass. Fits easily into your scarf.
  10. Wavy-bladed sword. Finely-crafted of steel and brass. 1d8 damage, 2 slots.
  11. A vulture. Not a pet, exactly, but it sort of follows you around and keeps an eye out for interesting sights.
  12. Coracle. A round little one-person rowboat, nimble but not very fast. 6 slots if you want to portage it.
  13. Vial of centipede venom. Target has to save vs. anaphylactic shock or be paralyzed. 3 doses.
  14. Pair of sandshoes. These ones are made of camel leather and papyrus, the old way. 2 slots.
  15. Handheld mirror. Burnished, silvery steel; highly reflective. 1 slot.
  16. Brass whistle. The cylindrical mountaineer kind.
  17. Bone flute. Beautifully carved; you know how to play some basic tunes. 1 slot.
  18. 50' of hempen rope. Sailor's choice. 1 slot.
  19. Pack of tarot cards. Both the major and the minor arcana. 
  20. A strange and unusual artifact [1d6]:
    1. A strange sandstone brick. It hums and shimmers sometimes, and will move of its own accord in your backpack. 1 slot.
    2. A maze of twisty indigo tattoos across your back and shoulders. A map? A diagram? A text?
    3. A fossil in a lump of kiln sand. Some kind of scuttling thing, all shell and legs and razor wings. 
    4. A shimmering, incandescent scarab beetle. Inside a little glass jar. Always tries to walk in one direction.
    5. A bronze tablet, covered in strange runes. You can't read it. Seemingly no one else can, either.
    6. An ordinary human skull, but made of hardened sand. There are legends of skeletons turned to sand; this may be proof.

Yeah. Sandy wizard. At some point I might get around to the "day-night-dreams-mirages desert wizard," but that's a big TBD.

Let me know what you think, or if you get a chance to use it.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

d100 Seas of Sand tattoos & trinkets

 I'm running another Seas campaign shortly, so I made another couple d100 trinkets and d100 tattoos tables. Here they are:


  1. set of matched jokers
  2. clay smoking pipe
  3. sharktooth necklace
  4. wide-brim rawhide hat
  5. camel’s lower jawbone
  6. manual on snake handling
  7. vial of bone sand
  8. four strips of fish jerky
  9. neck kerchief, blue
  10. brass bangles
  11. golden front tooth
  12. studded nose ring
  13. bells meant to be sewn into a braid of hair
  14. tiny prayer wheel
  15. foreign coin on a string
  16. silver thimble
  17. tin of beard & mustache wax made from snake oil
  18. geometric-patterned sash
  19. high-grade eyeliner
  20. green silk scarf
  21. veneered, gilt dagger
  22. random major arcana
  23. sealed jar of honey
  24. two hand-rolled cigarettes
  25. nip of scorpion tequila
  26. steel trident
  27. red fez, gold tassels
  28. curved pointy shoes
  29. big hoop earrings
  30. huge baggy pants
  31. inlaid drinking horn
  32. set of bone pipes
  33. scrapwood fiddle
  34. live tarantula in a glass jar
  35. carved dice & cups
  36. vial of antivenom
  37. huge silver belt buckle
  38. pamphlet-sized starmap
  39. soft camelskin jacket
  40. “legitimate” war medal
  41. a blue glass eye
  42. lobster claw on a string
  43. old copper pentagram necklace, verdigris-y
  44. letter from a former captain
  45. a working music box
  46. shed cobra’s skin
  47. shrunken human skull
  48. a golden sewing needle
  49. a broken scimitar
  50. feathered tricorn hat
  51. black leather eyepatch
  52. wooden peg leg carved to resemble an eagle’s talon
  53. bottle of rum, near empty
  54. seax knife, still sharp
  55. animal mask
  56. mummified cat
  57. a pair of old socks
  58. collection of shiny beads
  59. 10 ft. of silken rope
  60. a locket with a cameo of a lover inside
  61. three wedding rings
  62. an old papyrus manuscript
  63. pamphlet on the very graphic dangers of STDs
  64. a fancy curly wig
  65. crocodile-leather sandals
  66. a cracked, busted compass
  67. arrowhead, unknown metal
  68. tattoo needle & ink
  69. camel-hair monk’s habit
  70. a pair of sandproof goggles
  71. bouncy camel-bladder ball
  72. clay tablet covered in esoteric runes & glyphs
  73. broken brass pocketwatch
  74. half of a sailor’s astrolabe
  75. dried-out husk of a tentacle
  76. a cluster of ripe bananas
  77. a flask of pirate’s grog
  78. straight razor & towel
  79. seven different fancy colored leather belts
  80. false nose, wood & bronze
  81. a nautical chart from some distant far-off watery sea
  82. a round leather drum
  83. a key carved out of bone
  84. a large, strange egg
  85. finger-sized oilskin pouch
  86. diver’s helmet (no suit)
  87. pair of silver shackles
  88. monstrous claw preserved in embalming fluid
  89. an actual bar of soap
  90. ancient bronze sickle
  91. bottle of luxury perfume
  92. snuffbag full of rare salts
  93. two dried peppers, extremely spicy
  94. deed to unknown land
  95. pouch full of crop seeds
  96. saucy pin-up star calendar
  97. pack of dog-eared cards
  98. set of crytalline marbles
  99. brass knuckles
  100. one-eyed ship’s cat


  1. random scribblings
  2. ring of roses
  3. geometric glyph
  4. dice showing snake eyes
  5. line of crawling insects
  6. smiling drunk camel
  7. gatehouse & portcullis
  8. the letter “P,” “S,” or “W”
  9. a lighthouse
  10. “Eat Me Last”
  11. collection of black dots
  12. thunderbolt
  13. cobra head, leering
  14. crossed harpoons
  15. perfect shiny diamond
  16. “R.I.P.” + name
  17. “Mother” +  heart
  18. pair of swallows
  19. 1d10 anchors
  20. queen of hearts
  21. 1d4 of the four card suits
  22. vulture with a black halo
  23. crescent moon
  24. bone structure diagram
  25. lion print tracks
  26. paper lantern
  27. line of stitches
  28. grinning skull
  29. “Eight Lives Left” & a cat
  30. Lucky #13
  31. “Real Flesh & Blood”
  32. lemon slice
  33. constellation
  34. full-body squid
  35. seven-pointed star
  36. dead man’s hand
  37. rat king of 2d10 rats
  38. two sandships crashing into each other
  39. fishbones
  40. swarm of locusts
  41. angel with a burning sword
  42. grappling hook & rope
  43. big pile of golden coins
  44. series of musical notes
  45. perfect equilateral triangle
  46. seahorse unicorn
  47. pineapple
  48. supine, nude figure
  49. eyeball, on the eyelid
  50. burning book
  51. flickering candle
  52. 1d20 random playing cards
  53. “Vox Clamantis in Deserto”
  54. 1d10 words in foreign script
  55. “Upstanding Citizen of” + random city
  56. cow skull
  57. swordfish
  58. “Pillage, then Burn”
  59. random set of 1d4+1 initials
  60. 1d20 bands
  61. unbalanced scales
  62. sunburst
  63. ourobouros serpent
  64. empty grave
  65. halbear, the halbeard bear
  66. fully-rigged sailing ship
  67. broken heart + name
  68. “Keep Well Lubricated” + drop of water
  69. coil of rope
  70. exotic dancer
  71. “Hold Fast”
  72. compass rose
  73. twisting glass dragon
  74. matched palm trees
  75. spider crab
  76. all-seeing eye
  77. checkered grid, 2d20 × 2d20
  78. ship’s wheel
  79. rooster
  80. “Memento Mori”
  81. “Water is Gold”
  82. empty waterskin
  83. chain, 2d20 links
  84. “Silence”
  85. skittering centipede
  86. spyglass
  87. “F.U.B.A.R.”
  88. tornado
  89. cluster of ripe bananas
  90. “Too Pretty to Die”
  91. spitting camel
  92. meat cleaver
  93. 1d100 tally marks
  94. snail on the edge of a knife
  95. treasure map
  96. crown split in half
  97. salt cube
  98. mushrooms
  99. crate + weight in lbs.
  100. just a big glob of indigo ink
I might also be putting out another set of Seas rules sometime in the future. TBD. 

Friday, December 11, 2020

Big Wet Three: d100 Trinkets, Yes-Sir-ee!

I love trinkets lists. This one's for the Big Wet. 

  1. Tin of spam
  2. "Flooding Procedures and You" government pamphlet
  3. Old-fashioned spyglass
  4. Disposable camera and enough film for 25 photos
  5. High-grade nautical chart, now 100% useless
  6. Manual of sailor tattoos
  7. A cool geode
  8. Four caffeine tablets
  9. Half-dozen glo-sticks
  10. Bandana
  11. Rubber duck
  12. A single glow-in-the-dark condom
  13. Denim jacket, sleeves optional
  14. Barber's razor, battery-powered
  15. Tourniquet
  16. Nose ring
  17. Tattoo gun, no ink
  18. Doc Martens
  19. Wallet full of mostly-useless cash
  20. One wedding ring for each finger
  21. Excised tumor in a little jar
  22. Bright blue jerry can, reads "potable water"
  23. Spare tire
  24. Fingerless black leather gloves
  25. Matched spiked bracelets
  26. Twister, but missing the spinner
  27. Pack of cigarettes
  28. Dog tags
  29. Pack of balloons
  30. Surfboard, tie-dye colors
  31. A hefty canoe oar
  32. 12 oz can of Coca-Cola
  33. Bottle of extremely old codeine
  34. Ice axe
  35. Chocolate bar
  36. Set of allen wrenches, missing two
  37. Palm-sized wad of sticky-tack
  38. CD jukebox, battery-powered
  39. Shemagh scarf, like the cool military bros have
  40. A bullet with "BASTERD" poorly carved into it
  41. Diver's wristwatch
  42. Wraparound shades
  43. Four-pack of twinkies
  44. Complete Yahtzee! set, no scorecards
  45. Basic travel-sized makeup kit
  46. Male enhancement pills, questionable efficacy
  47. Trusty beanie, slouch-able or ear-covering as needs be
  48. Sharktooth necklace
  49. Inner tube
  50. Staple gun, no staples
  51. Roll of scotch tape
  52. MRE: fettuccini alfredo
  53. A weird scary bug in a jar
  54. Acoustic guitar, missing a string
  55. BB Gun
  56. Matched shot glasses
  57. Super high-end hydroflask
  58. A pouchful of dry earth
  59. Rubik's cube
  60. A packet of Lisa Frank stickers
  61. Nokia phone, still working, no signal
  62. Baseball cap, Boston Red Sox
  63. Cowboy hat
  64. Growler of moonshine, mostly empty
  65. Lobster cage
  66. 10' of barbed wire in a little sack
  67. Rubber-band ball, 6" across
  68. Hard hat with "expendable" stamped across it
  69. Snorkel
  70. Really fancy switchblade with an in-laid handle and everything
  71. Lock of red hair
  72. Bowling ball
  73. 6-months sober token
  74. A random major arcana card
  75. Ushanka
  76. Compass
  77. Bundle of coat hangers
  78. Dozen permanent markers, in full rainbow bright colors
  79. Bottle of hand sanitizer
  80. Raggedy-Anne doll
  81. Big, powerful magnet
  82. Harmonica
  83. Stack of Playboys, waterlogged and blurry
  84. Black eyepatch, medical-grade
  85. Super high-grade tactical cargo pants
  86. Roll of paper towels, dry
  87. A weird skull
  88. Love letter
  89. Windchimes
  90. Pack of poker cards
  91. REI gift card, $100
  92. Six feet of 0.75" PVC pipe
  93. Crucifix on a necklace
  94. Sixer of light beer
  95. Three $10,000 poker chips on a string
  96. Small desk fan
  97. A fucking sword
  98. Athletic elbow- and knee-guards
  99. A dozen granola bars
  100. A strange radio that beeps out a single Morse code letter every dawn
Some entries (lovingly) stolen from Mothership, KISHU, and the Face gang. 

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Taxonomy of Powered by the Apocalypse Games, some flawed-but-still-cool research

I turned this in as a final for art-history-of-games-ish class this semester, so I thought I'd put it up here for shits and giggles as well. 

This is a somewhat-exhaustive taxonomy of PbtA games, tracking ten different systemic mechanical elements in each, and a loose kind of succession between them. It's not perfect, in that my methodology is sort of flawed and there are definitely errors and omissions floating around, but it's a useful visual nonetheless, I think.

Here's the PDF. You'll want Acrobat for this, since it's dependent on the different layers. If you don't have Acrobat or otherwise don't have access to the layers feature, here's a .zip file of all of the graphs as images.

And just to show the mild absurdity of this whole thing, here's what the graph looks like with every single layer turned on simultaneously: 

Anyway, let me know if you have any questions or want to give me grant money to do more of this research or whatever. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Big Wet Two: Equipment Boogaloo

 Continued from the first post.

This post is about stuff. Mostly gear. 

Remember that bullets are currency. I'll do an actual inventory rules-post at some point, but for now, assume the standard 10-12ish slots per person.


As we all know, blogger hates tables, so here's the table instead:
Here's the link to the PDF.

If you're unfamiliar with Mothership, here's a brief overview of the bits you might not understand:
  • Underlined numbers are multiplied by 10. 2d10 has a range between 20 and 200. 
  • Short range suffers no ill effects; medium range imposes a -10 penalty; long range imposes disadvantage
  • [+] means advantage, [-] means disadvantage
  • Crits are any double (11, 22, etc.)
  • Automatic weapons fire in bursts. If you're trained in firearms, you get to use the (parenthesized) number, otherwise it's spray and pray. 
  • An average person has about 60 health, give or take. That might go down for Big Wet.
Everything else on this table should be relatively self-explanatory. 

Some rules and stuff about guns:
  1. Shooting a gun is a regular combat action.
  2. Reloading is a regular combat action.
  3. If you spend 30 seconds lying or kneeling down with your gun braced on something, taking careful aim, you can give yourself advantage on the next shot you take.
  4. As established previously, guns generally don't mind getting wet, but firing underwater is essentially impossible.
  5. Remember that bullets are currency, so all the costs listed are in bullets.
Some notes and thoughts about this table:
  • Melee weapons are very cheap, and deliberately so. Fighting in melee is a messy, dangerous gamble, and in the Big Wet, there's no guarantee you can make it to your opponents without having to swim or wade through muck. 
  • It lacks a lot of the common "improvised weapons" you see in apocalyptic settings (bricks, screwdrivers, bicycle chains, etc.), mostly because there are too many to list. If you need rules for those, I'd have them deal 1d10 by default, +1d10 if they take two hands, +1d10 if they have sharp or exposed edges. 
  • Guns get pricey fast. This is also deliberate: post-apocalyptic settings don't often have much to work towards, and so I think having some visible-but-not-available rewards for players is a good thing. Also, they can just fucking shred people (and things...?), so they shouldn't be cheap.


Most of this gear should be pretty self-explanatory. 

Tracking bullets, batteries, and slots I realize is extremely fiddly, but at the same time, this is a survival game: those kinds of small details really, really matter. You could maybe hack in Usage Dice (a la the Black Hack) for batteries and gasoline and stuff, but because bullets are currency, you really do have to track them. (On the flipside, you'll never have that many, so there's isn't much to track anyway!)


That's all I've got for now. Next time, I'll hopefully get to vehicles, food, and armor, all of which I have a few ideas for, but nothing 100% certain yet. 

Also, if there's interest, I might outsource some of this, and run a Big Wet Challenge for the good folks over on the spillway, in true GLOG style. 

Let me know, in any case.