HAG System Name – still on the table

On, or rather IN, the TableI’m still wrestling with this as I write up a more explicit text for the core system. My thought is that the name ought to really say what the system does. It should provide a “High Adventure” feel in the games. Correction, it should increase the “High Adventure” feel. For example, the Grim and Gritty Combat System is very clear in what it does for d20.

The following are extracted from an email I sent my friend and fellow game designer, Dr. Pazzazzu. I’m going to have to sort them out a bit, but all things told, it’s not a bad brainstorm (in blue):

A = Action

High Adventure Game Action System = HAGAS

vs.

I = Integrated

High Adventure Game Integrated System = HAGIS

The main idea is that it is the variable mechanic 3 dice (take the mid resultexept for when a meta-game item is activated, invoked whateveriiiiin which case the high is used for an advantage and the low for a disadvantage).

The default will be 3d20 since this applies well to other systems d20/D&D, 3d6 (HERO, GURPS, etc.), etc. that have a 10.5 average (mid20 maintains this average result). But options for using other dice will be presented for other games (e.g. FUDGE, etc.). There will be an analysis of what using the weighted dice does as a mechanic (compared to other dice methods).

There will also be a section on differing meta-game schema’s such as (bear with me these are just examples):

1) I have a pool of HERO points that refreshes due slowly or based on GM fiat. I can use these points whenever I want, but when they’re gone, they’re gone.

2) I have a pool of HERO points that refreshes every session. I can use them whenever I want and am penalized if I have any left over at the end of the session (either mechanically or via ridicule from the other players)

3) I have a pool of points that must be used towards one of my predefined “character goals/passions/obligations/alignment” whatever. I decide when I want to use them. The GM can also activate metagame items at will…

etc. These are options for use in any game.

The idea is for this to be presented as a new mechanic or a tweek to a game’s existing mechanic for use in D&D/Rolemaster/GURPS RO for new game designs. Aega Mythea will be designed using this HAGIS/HAGAS mechanic. I’d like to keep the reference to haggis (the food item), because it just jives for me. My brother really likes it a lot too. “Aega Mythea…..made with HAGUS…its not just for breakfast anymore!”

Basically, I need to decide for HAGXS….what is the X….and what does it stand for?

HAGIS

HAGAS

HAGUS

HAGES —-nope

HAGOS —-nope

etc. and what it stands for. All will be “High Adventure Game _______ System” in which

A = action, activation, Adaptive, abstract, abstraction, add-on, anima (innerself, soul)

I = integrated, intelligent, Invocation, isometric

U = Unilateral, undulating, ultra-modern, ubiquitous, umbrella, unadulterated, unclean, unfettered, universal, utile, utopian, user-friendly

I’m leaning torward universal, action, activation, or invocation now…..Any thoughts?

D&D Prestige Class: The Venator

Previously, I’ve posted about Flammenarbe d’Arcanum, my beloved and deceased Wizard character in my good friend, The Wraith’s most excellent Imperial Destiny Campaign (also previously mentioned).Flamme

The truth be told, he was a specialist wizard (Specializing in Abjurations with no access to Divinations) that had taken levels in a homebrew, cobbled-together, one-off Prestige Class called The Venator (Quasi-latin for “Hunter”). The Venator was essentially a campaign-specific, spell-casting, demon-hunter (Jeeze, what’s with the hyphens and me tonight).

I thought I’d provide the PrC game info here for the masses. Mind you, play-testing has been minimal (n=1, though we didn’t note any substantial problems) and the PrC does contain some campaign-specific items (notably references to Sentinels….these guys were essentially, fighters sworn to protect his or her War Wizard charge from harm). Posting this was inspired by Greg Webster’s Lifeshaper PrC on his blog. Enjoy.

The Venator

The (Demon) Hunter

REQUIREMENTS

Alignment: Must be of Good alignment
Feats: Spell Penetration
Spellcasting: Must be able to cast 5th-level arcane abjuration spells. Must be able to cast Protection From Evil and Magic Circle vs. Evil
Skills: Knowledge (Outer Planes) (6 ranks)
Role-playing: Must seek out and receive class training under a mentor.
Must have come into physical contact with a fiend. Must have been exposed to fiendish magic.

GAME RULE INFORMATION

Hit Die: d4.

Class Skills: The Venator’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are those listed under the Wizard Class, plus Bluff (Cha), Diplomacy (Cha), Listen (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), and Spot (Wis). [Many Ventor’s have specialized away from Divination magic (to Abjuration) and therefore acquire the above “mundane” detection skills as a means of compensation.]

Skill Points Per Level: 2 + Int modifier

PRESTIGE CLASS TABLE: THE VENATOR

Lvl

BAB

Fort

Ref

Will

Infernal

Spell

Penetration

 

Demonic

 

Resistance

Caster

Level

Special

1

+0

+2

+0

+2

+1

+1

+1

Detect Fiends

2

+1

+3

+0

+3

+2

+2

+2

3

+1

+3

+1

+3

+3

+3

+3

Fiendish Resistance

4

+2

+4

+1

+4

+4

+4

+4

Share Fiendish Resistance

5

+2

+4

+1

+4

+5

+5

+5

Turn Fiends

CLASS FEATURES Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Wizard Proficiencies

Spells: At each level, the Venator advances in a previous spellcasting class for purposes of new spells and spells per day only. Each increase in spellcasting level also adds +1 level to the Venator’s previous spell-casting ability.

Detect Fiends (Sp): At 1st level, the Venator gains the spell-like ability to detect lower planar creatures at will, up to 120 feet. To use this ability, the Venator must spend a standard action in concentration, and this ability detects in a sixty-degree arc, similar to detect evil. This ability will not discern the power or strength of the lower planar creature, the number of such creatures, or items imbued with lower planar power, and is limited by the same barriers that limit detect evil.

Fiendish Resistance (Ex): Through exposure to the denizens of the lower planes and their supernatural and spell-like abilities, the Venator has an innate bonus of +1/ Venator Level on all saving throws versus lower planar creatures’ attacks and abilities. Starting at 4th-level, the Venator can extend this Resistance to his Sentinel if within a 10’ radius of the Venator.

Share Fiendish Resistance (Ex): Starting at 4th-level, the Venator can extend this Resistance to his Sentinel if within a 10’ radius of the Venator.

Fiendish Spell Penetration (Su): Through dedicated study of the denizens of the lower planes and their supernatural and spell-like abilities, the Venator gains a +1 enhancement bonus/Venator Level to overcome the spell resistance of lower planar creatures and their servants. This bonus stacks with any grants by the Spell Penetration feat or similar bonuses.

Turn Fiends (Ex): At 5th level, the Venator gains the extraordinary ability a number of times per day equal to three plus the Venator’s Charisma modifier to turn lower planar creatures, much as a cleric of the same level turns undead, except that the Turning check uses the Venator’s character level, while the actual HD turned uses the Venator’s class level. This ability does not affect undead, and takes a standard action to utilize. A Venator may also take Extra Turning as a feat, which allows the Venator to turn lower planar creatures four more times per day than normal. A Venator may take this feat multiple times, gaining four extra daily turning attempts each time.

NOTE ON INFERNAL TAINT: If a Venator uses a lower planar weapon, or knowingly imbibes or partakes of lower planar essence (in the form of any demonic fluid such as ichor, or eats of their tainted flesh, etc.), the Venator loses all of their class abilities until such time as they perform a three-day Rite of Purification.

Here is the pdf version of this class: Venator 1.0.pdf


~Adaen

Imperial Destiny Campaign: Special Service Squad #4

I’ve been muttering about the characters I’ve played in my current game (run by my good friend, The Wraith). I thought it might be nice to give an overview of our current party….complete with pictures (Generated via the NBOS Character Sketcher). Note that much more information can be found on our illustrius GM’s website, The Imperial City.

The Imperial City Website

Our campaign, as I’ve mentioned before, is set in a highly modified version of Oerth (World of Greyhawk) and closely emulates the Roman Empire.

~Adaen of Bridgewater, High Adventure Games

Tiberius

Tiberius Ardax (sp)
Tiberius is a Cleric of St. Cuthbert, as well as our party leader. He has delved into the arts of Inquisition (i.e., Inquisitor Prestige Class). He fights with a spiked chain and shield. He is always the voice of reason and wisdom among us.

Lorenzo

Lorenzo Glomm
Lorenzo is a decorated Imperial Scout (Rogue w/ levels in Ranger). He fights with a rapier/dagger combo, in conjunction with a buckler and is most skilled in trap detection.

Elspeth

Elspeth
Elspeth is a Cleric/Sorcerer in service of both the Deity Joramy (Fire Goddess) and the Arcanum (War Wizards of the Elreddi Empire). She is yet a junior member of the clergy and the War Wizards, but holds the promise of great power (She has taken the Mystic Theurgist prestige class). Whatever else is said, Elspeth’s ability as a negotiator cannot be doubted.

Jura

Jura the Canny
Jura is the hobgoblin sentinel of Elspeth. She is a master of a style of combat that focuses on speed, mobility, and a sharp axe. In fact, she is the wielder of Grimmig, an axe of immense and growing power.

Sparrow

Sparrow
Sparrow has been discussed recently
.

The Deatharc

The Deatharc
The Deatharc is sentinel of Sparrow and the last of a noble line of orogs……whose title of nobility was “Deatharc”. He is a powerhouse of destruction…. wielding a mighty scythe to effect the dismemberment of many.

Al

Alistar
Al is not truly a member of our party, but is rather a noted historian (field reporter) who is renowned for documenting the exploits and demise of the esteemed Emperor’s Hammer. He has since attached himself to our party to continue his work, albeit with lesser subjects.

Master Sparrow of the Elreddi War Wizards

Since my Mage has just “leveled” (though I haven’t been there for a session in quite some time due to family responsibilities), I had to pick a feat, skills, etc. While working these items up, I thought I might post him (Sparrow) here:

Sparrow

Master “Sparrow” of the Elreddi War Wizards
Alignment: LG Appearance: 5’9″, 140 lbs, black hair, brown eyes, 20 years old.
Human Wizard L10/L1 IotSFV (Diviner: Restricted School = Necromancy)
Prestige Class – Initiate of the Sevenfold Veil (A sort of Uber-Abjuration/Spell-duelist)
L1-10 = W, L11-17 = IotSFV, L18-27 = Wizard, L28 = Epic Levels…..

Str 9
Dex 15
Con 15
Int 18 —-All Stat Increases will go here (at L12 this goes to 19, @ L16 it goes to 20, etc.)
Wis 14
Cha 12

Feats (some of these are PrC driven):
Spell Focus – Abjuration H
Skill Focus – Spell Craft L1
Greater Spell Focus – Abjuration L3
Empower Spell W5
Energy Substitution – Acid L6
Quicken Spell – L9
Heighten Spell -W10
Pending for L12: Craft Wonderous Item

Later Feat Possibilities –
Spell Focus – Evocation, Item Creation Feat (possibly wand), Energy Admixture, Heighten Spell, Spell Focus – Evoc, Ench…., Greater Spell Focus – Evoc, Ench…, Maximize Spell, Spell Penetration, Greater Spell Penetration, Chain Spell, Improved Toughness

Skills:
Knowledge – Arcana 14 (+1)
Scry 14 (+1)
Concentration 14 (+1)
Spellcraft 14 (+1)
Know: Monsters 14 (+1)
(all maxed out)

Know: The Planes 6 (+2)
Know: Nature 4
Alchemy 1
Intuit Direction 1
Know: Geography 1
Know: Architecture & Engineering 1
Know: Nobility & Royalty 1
Know: History 1
Know: Religion 0
(all less than maxed out)
(The +x’s in parentheses indicate my 12th level skill selections)
Languages: Common, Draconic, Rhenee, Sylvan

L9 Spells: Teleport (L5 Trans) & Dominate Person (L5 Ench)
L10 Spells: Persistent Image (L5 Illus) & Cone of Cold (L5 Evoc)
Newly Acquired L11 Spells: Analyze Dweomer (L6 Div) & Mass Haste (L6 Trans)

Pending L12 Spells: Mass Suggestion (L6 Ench) and Eyebite (L6 Trans)

Some Background Jottings…..we never did write this up formally…too hard after the 2nd TPK:

Sparrow (Child #3 –Denarus Entarius)

Alassa (Rhenee background) mother (source of magical ability….possibly a sorceress focused on Divination/Charms/Enchantments) and Tolian Entarius (Elreddi) father (merchant: textiles, rare spices, fine oils, imports/exports of the exotic)…..they met in a tavern….it was all very racy and scandalous.. Brother1 (Tolian) is taking up the father’s trade (very serious about the family business and wants to live up to expectations of an oldest son….mother thinks he works too hard). Brother2 (Gentius) is a historian (know’s of Alistar professionally, not personally, but have corresponded on historical matters….they disagree on some sticking point…..he is very bookish….we get along well.). Sister4 (Marissa) is a bard (serves in the Elreddi Army as a scout….bit of a wildchild….like her mother). Brother5 ( Gaius) is a bouncer/part-owner at a tavern….has been saving his money and he and friends opened the tavern….not clear where the money came from.

Sparrow has an Uncle Orasi (mother’s brother) who occasionally visits. He still lives with the Rhenee and is one of the few of her people with whom she (or her children) still has contact. Sparrow is on very friendly terms with Uncle Orasi (whom he resembles very much and whom he suspects is an Arcanist of some sort).

Sparrow has established effective use of spells for intelligence gathering, protections, and firepower as needed. During the Battle of Sky’s Wrath, he had been on a scouting mission and ended up fighting in the ranks with none other than Master Shadwell. Shadwell recognized his valor during the worst of the battle and recommended to his master that he be elevated to Initiate Level. During the battle, Sparrow very nearly lost his life and at that point opted to take a sentinel…..

Has a familiar: a sparrow (perhaps use the raven stats….or could I come up with something appropriate) named Zephyr. Zephyr likes to sing and sometimes seems startled when spoken to (a bit of an airhead…I’d recommend)…..Change this as you see fit.

Sparrow is the nickname that his mother called him “my little sparrow”.

Sparrow knows a lot of people who travel a lot due to his father’s import/export business. He has a friend in the Imperial Headhunters (Shade maybe…..whomever you like).

The Blackwolf did business with his father prior to being outed as a gangster by the Emperor’s Hammer…..Mother never approved.

Currently riding a horse named Rutigliano who has “two-words”….Extreme Diarrhea….Always seems to try to go on farm animals….esp. pigs. Very odd. That is unless you’d like for me to carry on with Amato…

I’m thinking the voice will be a Irish/Scottish/Cockney mix….we’ll see. Any recommendations/requests…I could do a German or Indian/Egyptian accent too? Anything works for me really.

I imagine that this is will likely be pretty boring for all but I thought “why the hell not?”

~Adaen of Bridgewater, www.highadventuregames.com

Robin Laws Player Types

On Jeff’s Game Blog, I found this post that highlights a quiz based on Robin’s Laws of Good Game Mastering. This book is an excellent resource that I highly recommend. Within its 32 pages, Mr. Laws describes several types of gamers and what elements of the game satisfy them. Robin's Laws to Good Game Mastering

The quiz was built by “CharlesRyan” on QuizFarm: What RPG Player (Not Character) Type Are You? It takes a stab at identifying player types/preferences. I took it with the following result:

 

You scored as Storyteller. The Storyteller is in it for the plot: the sense of mystery and the fun of participating in a narrative that has the satisfying arc of a good book or movie. He enjoys interacting with well-defined NPCs, even preferring antagonists who have genuine motivations and personality to mere monsters. To the Storyteller, the greatest reward of the game is participating in a compelling story with interesting and unpredictable plot threads, in which his actions and those of his fellow characters determine the resolution.With apologies to Robin Laws.

Storyteller
 
80%
Tactician
 
75%
Power Gamer
 
70%
Character Player
 
50%
Weekend Warrior
 
50%
Specialist
 
25%
Casual Gamer
 
15%

What RPG Player (Not Character) Type Are You?
created with QuizFarm.com

For me, I think it is pretty accurate as although I tend to focus on a good story, I also appreciate solid tactical (tactician) and strategic (power gamer) play. I envision that this quiz could serve as a valuable tool for many gaming groups and plan on asking my group to take it. Not that there are likely to be any surprises (we’ve been gaming together for a long time now), but one can never be sure. Anyway, we’re all about the fun….and this quiz (and subsequent discussion) could be just that.

~Adaen of Bridgewater, High Adventure Games