Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fantasy: Gateway 2008 Characters (the other two)

Here are the other two pregens for this Sunday:

Sister Morwyn, Fae Priestess of the Maiden
Gurtúz, Holy Inquisitor

These two couldn't be more different, really.

I also updated some of the other characters I already posted. Minor stuff, really -- rewording some aspects, editing some phases, that kind of thing.

I made a little cheat sheet, too. If it proves useful on Sunday, I'll post that as well.


Unknown said...

Yay! I was waiting to read these!

Magic Stress:
Interesting Idea. I like the play mechanic of taking consequences for casting too much. I don't think it would work for my implementation, but that's just more to do with the rules of the "realm" I'm working in. I see something like the nosebleeds the father in "Firestarter" used to get, or perhaps more severe consequences like "Burned out talent" where the caster wouldn't be able to caster for a week (or worse?)

I wonder how this might expand into "stealing" unused stress from other casters, or perhaps be used to pool it from other casters in a "coven"?

Mindstrike - I like the restriction on the consequences. However, do you envision any "coolness" as a result of possible spin?

Although the idea of spin and successes wasn't something I saw in Rob Donoghue's "Skyfall" either. Spellcasting was just pass/fail there also. I haven't seen any of the Dresden Files stuff, so I don't know what's going on there either.

Nature's Fury - As I read it, I was interested to note that you didn't do some aspect like "Barely Contained" or "Berserk" to go with it. So in the determining of the aspect, does the Caster determine the specific aspect placed on the target? Could a caster put it on an enemy target and then have it just as easily attack it's own side as the caster's side? (just thinking, s'all.)

Now I haven't really researched it against your prior information, but it doesn't seem like you make a distinction between manipulation of magic by someone "sanctioned" by the religion versus a heretic. Or is that even a possibility in your gameworld? With the Inquisition overtones, I would imagine so.

Mike Olson said...

It should be noted that, in the setting, there is no "divine magic," per se -- most magic is either a matter of skill and willpower (Magecraft, Summoning) or craft (Artifice, Alchemy).

Religion's important, but as a source of political, not supernatural, power. (In the setting, I mean. People are obviously free to derive whatever supernatural power they can get from religion in the real world.)

I.e., Morwyn has Magecraft not because she's a priestess, but because she's a Fae.

The Inquisitor is after conspirators, traitors, and heretics more than he's after, say, witches. I really wanted to call him a Witchfinder, but in the end it just wasn't accurate, even though that's more or less how I picture him.

But anyway, as for the mechanical stuff:

I'm not 100% sold on the Magic stress idea. And even if I am, that name's gotta go -- consider it a placeholder. Stress will do for now. I'm not entirely sure I couldn't just go with "Pay a Fate Point or take a consequence," though. I will say that I'm certainly digging the self-imposed aspect thing, so thanks for that. And I like the idea of pooling stress for a group effort; that's nice and elegant, and true to sword-and-sorcery source material.

I specified Mindstrike's (also a lame name, but that's a detail for later) consequences as mental just to change things up. The last spellcaster I made, Yves, had Firebolt instead, which was a much more standard offensive spell typically found in your better fantasy games. I wanted to give Morwyn something a little subtler to reflect the nature of Fae magic. Odds are I'll just mandate that spells have to specify what kind of consequences they deal: physical or mental.

I left Nature's Fury's aspect up to the player on a whim, really. I kinda shy away from dictating too much when it comes to that sort of thing. So if the player wants the aspect to be "Wolf Creature," the target can be a wolf creature. If the player wants it to be "Beserk Tree-Man," the target can be one of those instead. Etc.

I'm not sure about always assigning a cool effect to spin (offensive spin, anyway), as the breakpoint for Moderate consequences is at 4 anyway, which makes a spin-dependent effect seem like... I dunno... a silver medal. Sorry Shawn Johnson! Or like it just clutters up the process with extraneous fiddly bits. I want to put the emphasis on aspects and consequences. In play, I usually just assign some appropriately cool bit of flavor when a player gets spin on an attack, anyway.