Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games, Science Fiction

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 26: Classic Traveller

Dungeons and Dragons is considered the granddaddy of all roleplaying games. Approaching 50 years since it’s first publication and it is still going strong. There was another game that was very popular when RPGs were new and that was Traveller from Games Designers’ Workshop. While D&D was fantasy, Traveller was science fiction and had a very popular following. So why did I never get a chance to create a character before now? Unfortunately the friends in my gaming circles were primarily players of D&D, FASA’s Star Trek, WEG’s Star Wars and others. I saw the Traveller books, but couldn’t afford to pick them up when no one I knew personally was playing. As the years went by, I’d see the new editions of Traveller come out, some sounded interesting, some did not. The idea of roleplaying in a universe where a centralized empire was no longer in control sounded very intriguing.

Thanks to various PDF bundle sales, I’ve been able to pick up a couple of versions of Traveller including the first edition commonly known as the Little Black Books. I knew that I had to create a character for the 2022 Character Creation Challenge. So opening up the first book, let’s see where the dice take us in.

So the very first thing the RAW states is: All characters start at the age of 18, untrained and inexperienced. You build your character from here and take them through a career before you use them as a player character. That makes sense.

I like how they have the series of characteristics set up. There is the usual list that you can find in most RPGs. Strength, Dexterity, Endurance, Intelligence (defined as an IQ representation), Education (highest level of schooling reached) and Social Standing (social class and level of society). Instead of writing them out or using abbreviations on your character sheet, you use the Universal Personality Profile (aka UPP). All characteristics are listed in the order posted above and are represented by hexadecimal (base 16) characters. 0 through 9 correspond to the numbers they represent. Numbers higher than 9 are represented by the letters A (for 10) through F (for 15). So the UPP is listed in a string of six digits. For example, a UPP could be B97A58. Strength would be 11 (represented by the letter B), Dexterity is 9, Endurance is 7 and so on. I remember seeing stats for characters in reference books and did not understand what they meant until now. When the game was made, I could see the designers trying to save space by using a setup like this. I still remember the 8+3 file name format in older computer DOS displays. Characteristics are generated by rolling 2d6. Yes this doesn’t generate a lot of stats that are above 12, but the game seems to indicate that other factors can change your characteristics. The clicky-clack of the dice was completed and I had my UPP of B96667.

The Social Standing was not high enough to automatically bestow a Noble Title, but I was instructed to select my character’s name at this time. Pulling some ideas out of the air this character shall be known as Tyrell Balto. The Rank is mentioned as a commission or promotion that Balto may have earned while in the service and can be referred to even after leaving.

Speaking of service, Balto would have enlisted in one of six possible options. Navy, Marines, Army, Scouts, Merchants or Other (unproductive carriers such as a criminal organization). You don’t just automatically join one of these, you have to enlist and roll to see if you are accepted. I had to scroll down to find the enlistment target numbers. There are some bonuses to the roll if you have certain characteristics. The advantage for enlistment is that you become an officer sooner, this comes with some bonuses to various skills and stats. I debated about which service to try to enlist for. All had their advantages and disadvantages. Let’s try for Navy. I rolled higher than the enlistment target number so Balto is a part of an interstellar navy.

The first term is four years, now making Balto the age of 22. Did he survive in those four years? Yes there is a chance that the character can be killed during creation. I remember hearing about this, but this is the first time I’ve actually experienced it. Needed a 5+ and rolled a 5, whew. Did Balto earn a commission during the first four years? the dice say yes, again I rolled exactly what was needed. However I did not roll high enough to earn a rank promotion. A commission and a rank promotion is worth acquiring extra skills. So I get to roll for three skills (2 for initial term and 1 for the commission). There are four tables but I can only roll on the first three. I want to increase one of my characteristics so the first roll gives me +1 to Endurance. Next I rolled for the skill Gun Combat-1 and finally Electronic-1.

Now I can retire from the service or I can reenlist. Again there is a target number to see if the Navy will let me stay, which I succeeded. So four more years in the service, which he survived (I don’t know if I like this survival rule). No commission but he did get a promotion to Ensign. So two more skill rolls which were +1 to INT and Vacc Suit-1. Let’s try for another term in the Navy. Rolled a 6 which is what was needed (now age 30) of which he survived. No commission or rank advancement this time. So only one skill roll which resulted in Mechanical-1. Let’s try for one more term, which was not accepted. So now Balto is mustering out. Which results in more benefits (4 in total due to the numbers of terms and rank). This resulted in a membership to the Travellers Aid Society, High Psg (I think this is High Passage? I’m not sure.) and 60,000 in cash.

So Tyrel Balto was an engineer in the interstellar navy for twelve years. And there are a lot of blank spaces on the sheet and I have no idea what my equipment is. I think if I would have looked in the other books there may have been something. Perhaps I should have used the Classic Traveller Facsimile Edition to create this character. Here is the sheet.

Afterthoughts:

For a game published in 1981, I think I followed the character creation process pretty well. I was still jumping back and forth between several pages (which is a pain in a non-bookmarked PDF) and a few things still confused me. The number of skills seemed a little low, but not actually playing the game I could be wrong. Having the possibility of the character dying during creation would have probably made me upset. There is an option of an early retirement with a wound, but that didn’t really appeal to me either. The ranks seemed woefully low as well. A service record of 12 years and only exiting as an Ensign?

If I was planning to make more characters (or assist others), I probably would have put together a worksheet to speed the process up. I’d like to play this game once just to say I’ve tried it. After I’ve done that is when I would determine if I was going to continue playing or attempting any homebrewing.

Additional Notes:

Thanks to the power of Twitter, DwD Studios liked and responded with answers to my post yesterday regarding White Lies. It was actually kewl to have the conversation with them. They clarified the COST question on upgrades that I had posted. The cost for the upgrade is the same as the base weapon. HALF is half the cost of the base weapon, etc. It was mentioned in the rules that I had missed. They also confirmed that the XP bonuses do stack, but he stressed that this was an optional rule. I think it’s good when companies actually interact with their customers in a manner like this. I doubt I would have gotten a quick response like this from a larger group.

Coming Up Next:

Blue Rose The Roleplaying Game of Romantic Fantasy

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games, Spy-Fi

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 25: White Lies

DwD Studios has put out several games that I’ve featured in the Character Creation Challenge. Earlier this month I created a character for Covert Ops. Last year I used FrontierSpace on one of the dates. For this entry, I’m using their espionage game called White Lies. This game is based on the Swords & Wizadry Whitebox (an original D&D retroclone so in essence this is a d20 based system). At the time of publishing this blog entry, there was no cost to download a PDF of the game (or any of it’s supplements) from DriveThruRPG. I am tempted to get a PoD copy of this game as well.

White Lies is billed as a roleplaying game about doing bad things for good reasons. Let’s make a seedy underworld spy that works for Bureau 19 (the agency in the game). The attribute generation is the standard 3d6 going down the line. STR, INT, WIS, CON, DEX and CHA. An Intelligence score of 13 or higher earns a 5% bonus to all experience point awards. The same with Charisma or your classes prime attribute. I wonder if these bonuses would stack? While there is basic character creation at the start of the book, an advanced supplemental training is also available in the back of the book if Admins allow it. For action checks (not attack rolls) you roll a d6 and add any modifiers. A roll of 4 or above is a success for standard actions. The Admin may determine that some tasks require a higher target number.

After rolling the attributes, you can select your class. The minimum prime requirement for each class is 9. We can select from Confiscators (thieves), Eliminators, Infiltrators (con men), Investigators and Transporters. The additional supplements gives the options for Recon Scouts and Telepaths. With the high Dexterity score that I rolled, I’m going to select Transporter. I filled in the special skills and bonuses. This character also starts with a vehicle worth $50,000 (nice).

Speaking of equipment, agents automatically start with a semi-auto pistol, an operative kit, one other equipment kit of choice (I selected Technicians to fix the car if needed) and 3d6x100 starting cash. The basic for the AC is the lower number is better. But the RAW gives the Admin the option to use the ascending armor class. I’m sticking with the basic.

Add up armor class, select languages, write down movement (based on weight carried) and roll 1d6 for HP (add any CON modifier). Luckily I rolled a 6. I did look at the supplemental training in the back of the book and I selected Drive.

Ronald Denton wanted to be a race car driver every since he saw his first race. He learned all about cars while growing up. Unfortunately, no one wanted to hire a race car driver from the coldest wastelands of South Dakota. A friend hired him on to help with transporting cars from one side of the states to another. During one of these runs, Denton assisted an agent escaping through some treacherous roads. Impressed with his driving skills, the agent arranged for Bureau 19 to hire Denton and he hasn’t looked back since. He eagerly went through the training needed to become an agent.

Afterthoughts:

I am really curious to see how this game would play at the table. I could see myself playing it and homebrewing it. The book was pretty well laid out. I wasn’t searching too hard for information. An index would have been nice at the back of the book, but the PDF is bookmarked. There were a few equipment items that had “cost” listed as the price. I’m not certain if this is instructions for the Admin to determine the cost or if it was in error. Nothing else stood out to me editorial wise.

Additional Notes:

Another blog has popped up and been added to the list at the Character Creation Challenge page. Yes new blogs can come up any time. If I’m missing any, please email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com.

We are in the last week of the challenge. The finish line is in sight.

Coming Up Next:

The Original Travel

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 24: Dungeon Crawl Classics

In the 2021 Character Creation Challenge I had the opportunity to create a character for Mutant Crawl Classics. I was really impressed with the game after I had made my character. I had the opportunity to pick up a bunch of PDFs for Goodman Games Dungeon Crawl Classics in a charity sale, so I knew that I was going to use it in the 2022 Challenge. Then a few months later I was able to find a dead-tree version of the core rulebook at a good price, so I picked it up. Once again I love the feel and weight that a game book brings up when I’m holding it in my hands.

I really want to try a Dungeon Crawl Classics or Mutant Crawl Classics game for a few different reasons. But one of the big ones is that I want to experience this idea called ‘The Funnel’ where you make multiple level-zero characters and see which ones (if any) survive to make it up to level one where you actually select your class.

I did a lot of the character creation process breakdown in my MCC character creation. Since that game was based upon DCC it basically follows the same process. I think the biggest difference is that there are more starting occupations in DCC compared to just the two in MCC.

Some idle thoughts that came up while creating characters. Somehow the occupation roll mostly fit what meager attributes the characters had. I wonder if the level-0 characters can trade or sell their extra item before the adventure? What am I going to do with a chicken while in a dungeon? It would have also affected the equipment that I might buy for the character if I can sell a 10 ft chain to a store for half of the cost listed in the book. I still had to look up a few items like speed and initiative. But they were easily found.

I think I filled out the character sheets correctly.

Afterthoughts:

I still like that I can get some use out of my d30 that is in my dice bag. If I’m ever able to play DCC or MCC, I should invest in the other “funky dice” that they describe in the game.

Loved the art in this book. A lot of it was inspired by old-school books that contained interesting art.

Additional: I forgot to mention that there are rules to create standard characters if your GM didn’t want to run a bunch of zero-level characters through the funnel.

Additional Notes:

After yesterday’s post about the Merc RPG, I had a former player contact me on social media. Apparently there was a supplement to the boxed set that made the game feel more like a role playing game.

Coming Up Next:

White Lies

Posted in: Quotes, Star Trek

Daily Star Trek Quotes: January 24-30

And then our eyes locked from across the room…

Here are the Daily Star Trek Quotes that will appear on the @STrekQuotes twitter account for the week of January 24th through the 30th.

January 24
“Well, gentlemen, we all have to take a chance. Especially if one is all you have.” Kirk- Tomorrow is Yesterday, Stardate: 3113.2 #StarTrek #StarTrekTOS #WeAreStarfleet

January 25
“As they say on Talax, ‘Omara S’alas’, ‘Good news has no clothes’.” Neelix- Lineage, Stardate: 54452.6 #StarTrek #StarTrekVOY #WeAreStarfleet

January 26
“There’s an old Ferengi saying—‘Never ask when you can take.’”  Quark- Babel, Stardate: 46423.7 #StarTrek #StarTrekDS9 #WeAreStarfleet

January 27
Happy Birthday to James Cromwell. @jamesocromwell https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/James_Cromwell #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #StarTrekDS9 #StarTrekENT #WeAreStarfleet

“And you people, you’re all … astronauts … on … some kind of star trek.” Zefram Cochrane- Star Trek: First Contact, Stardate: 50893.5 #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #WeAreStarfleet

January 28
Happy Birthday to Gillian Vigman. @Gillian_Vigman https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Gillian_Vigman #StarTrek #StarTrekLowerDecks #WeAreStarfleet

“Wait, like to work on the bridge? Like Jadzia Dax?” Tendi “Who the bleep is that? I don’t know who that is. No, like Spock.” Dr. T’Ana- First First Contact, Stardate: 58130.6 #StarTrek #StarTrekLowerDecks #WeAreStarfleet

January 29
“You think that the loss of a colleague or friend doesn’t affect us? It does. But if we give in to those emotions, they overwhelm us. You’re the ones to be envied.” T’Pol- The Forgotten, Date: Unknown #StarTrek #StarTrekENT #WeAreStarfleet

January 30
“It looks horrible, tastes worse, but it’s absolutely guaranteed to make you feel better.” Dr. Crusher- Angel One, Stardate: 41636.9 #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #WeAreStarfleet

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 23: Merc

So the game Merc, published by Fantasy Games Unlimited in 1981, was one of those games that I always saw advertised in different magazines. I never found it at my local gaming store or at conventions. It was through an online auction site that I acquired this game (a long with a few others in the lot) and I decided that I wanted to try it out in the 2022 Character Creation Challenge. Let’s make a mercenary.

The Corporation is the company that is hiring mercenaries to work trouble spots around the world. Some covert and some overt. There are three sections that need to be determined to create a character. Physical Appearance, Physical and Mental Attributes, and Character Specialties. The dice used to create the character is 3d6, 1d6 or a type of percentage using d6 that range from 11-66.

To start the Physical Appearance is the age. 3d6+20 is what you start with, I ended up with 33. Nationality and Name are selected by the player. I’m going with American named Mark Powell to keep it simple. A random dice roll determined that Mark is of average height between 5’7.5” to 5’10”. Going in the middle I’ll select 5’9”. It talks about Weight, but mentions it will be discussed later in the character creation process. Random roll for hair color makes Mark a redhead with Hazel eyes (quickly looks up what hazel looks like, looks kinda brown to me but I’m not a color connoisseur). You even roll for the skin complexion, which ended up with Fair or Light Skinned (apparently they keep track of sunburns in this game). We even roll for what type of voice the character has? I guess it factors into something called Command Control. Will Mark end up with a voice that sounds like Pee Wee Herman? The dice say his voice is average (no affect on Command Control). Oh all of these rolls on physical appearance can be adjusted depending upon your nationality. The last item in the Physical Appearance section was what hand Mark preferred, which resulted in Right.

Now we move to Physical/Mental Attributes. These are Strength, Agility, Intelligence, Knowledge, Intuition, and Prior Military Experience (listed as Past Military Experience on the character sheet). You roll the 11-66 results and then select the score to which attribute you wish to use to meet your specialty minimum requirements. I rolled two really good scores and one really bad score. I checked out the specialties to see which one I wanted Mark to have for Primary and Secondary. Out of the 15 options, I selected Sniper/Sharpshooter for the Primary and Driver/Pilot for the Secondary. I assigned the attribute rolls to match the requirements. This also allowed me to fill in Mark’s weight and carrying capability.

On the Modified Test Rolls, are the attribute scores the attribute modifiers? Oh there they are, under the individual attribute descriptions. There is a weapons list with weight, but no costs. There is also no equipment list (unless I’m missing a book, which is possible since there is only one in the boxed set along with some handouts). I noticed that there is no info on experience points, rank or cash on hand. (Rank and XP were found in the GMs section) I really wonder if I’ve got an incomplete set now? A quick trip to the Merc entry on Wikipedia states that I’ve got everything, so yea. I guess I’m done? The second sheet mostly deals with wounds and nothing was written on it, so I didn’t scan it.

Afterthoughts:

I liked how quickly into the character creation the book took us. You want to shoot things, let’s get rolling. And the more I read, the more my eyebrow raised.

For the random rolls of physical appearances everything was pretty average. You had an equal chance to be a red-head vs a brunette. The only one that was not balanced was the hand preference.

While I was getting a “G.I. Joe” feel from some parts of the book, this system seemed off. 2d6 for some attacks while others were 3d6. Lot’s of info on movement, zero on equipment. No index to try to look things up. No background info on the Corporation or why they are hiring out mercenaries. Considering when Merc was released, this seems more like a wargame that tries to be a roleplaying game. I seriously doubt I’d play this game and I know I won’t be homebrewing for it. In fact I’m seriously considering adding this game to the trade pile.

There are plenty of other games that are fully fleshed out if you wanted to run a mercenary style campaign.

Additional Notes:

Besides creating a character for Merc, I also created a new character for Far Trek in the hopes of participating in an online game. The character was submitted today to the GM. I’ll let you know how the game goes.

I don’t think I have any more boxed sets scheduled for 2022, but if I use any in the future challenges I’ll have to make sure that they are complete before selecting them.

Coming Up Next:

Dungeon Crawl Classics

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Horror, Role Playing Games

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 22: Werewolf The Apocalypse

So I really debated about using this next game in my 2022 Character Creation Challenge. Werewolf The Apocalypse was published by White Wolf Games in 1991 and was part of the World of Darkness series. I recall playing the table top version of Vampire The Masquerade with my regular gaming group. I even found the character sheet from that game in my book of characters that I had somehow kept all these years. I don’t know if the system never appealed to me after playing VtM or if I’ve just never found werewolves interesting. That last part may come from the original Universal Pictures werewolf films. Every time Larry Talbot whined about being a werewolf, I wanted to turn it into a drinking game. When the World of Darkness LARP was popular in the 90’s, I recall a roommate that really liked the werewolf side. This book was one of the many gifts I received last year so having the physical book in my hands made it more of a candidate for the challenge. I always figured that if I still wasn’t impressed after creating a character, I could put the book in the trade pile.

I don’t recall anything about the game system from the Vampire campaign. So I’ll be going back into this set of rules without any preconceived notions. The universe background sounds interesting. Werewolves are trying to keep a balance to prevent the planet from being destroyed in an apocalypse (hence the reason why the name is in the title of the game).

So this character, what breed is he out of three choices? This guy is going to be Homid (human raised). While he seemed a little wild while young, he never knew that he was a werewolf until his body started changing. Next is your Auspice, or what phase of the moon you were born under. There are five choices. I still don’t know what these mean in the form of character creation. I selected Ahroun because I can at least understand what fighters are. Next is to select one of the 13 tribes (no, not the 13 tribes in Battlestar Galactica). There was a little bit more descriptions for this selection, so I chose Get of Fenris.

Ah, finally, we are onto the Attributes. They are Physical (Strength, Dexterity and Stamina), Social (Charisma, Manipulation and Appearance) and Mental (Perception, Intelligence and Wits). Each Attribute gets one free dot, then you select a primary attribute, a secondary attribute and a tertiary attribute. These get 7, 5 or 3 dots that you get to spend in each category. Since my guy is going to be tough, Physical will be the primary followed by Mental then Social. I fill like I’m taking a test by filling in all of these little circles.

Now we have abilities, which are basically talents, skills and knowledge that your character has. You choose which one of the three categories are primary (earns 13 dots), secondary (earns 9 dots) and tertiary (earns 5 dots). At this phase, I can only place 3 dots max in any item. I filled in my test… er… ability scores.

In the Advantages, there are also three categories, but they look different than the Attributes and Abilities. Some of the Advantages have scores (Renown), then there are backgrounds and gifts. The “checklist” didn’t go into a lot of detail where the other items had something. There were a lot of “see pg XX” items listed. Ugh. I tried to fill in what I could from what was found.

Finally there are 15 bonus points that you can spend everywhere, but certain items cost more than others (raising an attribute cost more than raising a background). I filled these in. Oh, and I guess I should come up with a name. Hans Brulker was born and raised in Germany. While his parents were killed when he was young, he didn’t know his true nature until an “Uncle” found him just after he noticed that changes were happening to him. Changes that were not explained in school. This “Uncle” told him about his true nature and brought him into the pack.

Afterthoughts:

I do want to give the writers some kudos for quoting a song lyric from bands like Sisters of Mercy, Killing Joke, Black Sabbath, The Cure and others. I’ve seen a few publications where they have used quotes from popular culture. It helps me understand the context they are trying to get across.

Having the chapter before character creation with a quick look into the system is also a really big help for new players. Even in the 90’s there were lots of games that didn’t explain the core system very well.

I can see where there were a few editing mistakes “See traits pg. XX” that should have been caught before printing.

While I’ve got a little better appreciation for the game after going through the character creation process. I don’t think that I’ll be playing this game or homebrewing for it. I’m not aware of anyone who still plays the White Wolf table top roleplaying games.

Additional Notes:

I had a chance to talk about the Character Creation Challenge at a local gaming store today. Several of the people thought it was a good idea. I’m still amazed at the number of posts on the RPG.net forums and using the #CharacterCreationChallenge hashtag.

Coming Up Next:

Merc

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games, Star Trek

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 21: Prime Directive 1st Edition

So in the 2021 Character Creation Challenge I created a character for the D20 Prime Directive roleplaying game. I talked about how this is a licensed game set in the Star Fleet Universe, which can only use races/events referenced in the original Star Trek series. Because of this, they would never lose the license (a good thing) but the company has had challenges coming out with newer supplements (still waiting for the various Gorn and cat races supplements). Since the first edition of Prime Directive (also known as PD1) was a different game than the D20 and GURPS versions, I decided that I would create a character for the 2022 Challenge.

The characters in Prime Directive are members of Starfleet. But instead of serving as a Captain or Department Chief, they serve on Prime Teams. A troubleshooting group that, if needed, are expendable. These specialists can come from various backgrounds that are sent to emergency hotspots on various missions.

The first step in character creation is selecting a race. There is the standard Federation races seen on Star Trek like Humans, Vulcans and Andorians. For some reason Tellarites are not listed in the core rulebook. Then there are Rigellians (large humanoids), Alpha-Centauran (Female dominated humanoids) and Cygnans (albino humanoids good with tech). All of these races have different characteristics which are Strength (STR), Accuracy (ACC), Speed (SPD), Leadership (LDR), Logic (LGC), Intuition (INT), Discipline (DIS), Technical (TEC), General Knowledge (GKN) and Perception (PER). All the races have set numbers except for Humans and Alpha-Centaurans. Later in the character creation process you can adjust these numbers.

Let’s go for a race I’ve never played before. Between the three new races I selected this character to be a Cygnan named Kovil. Next for Kovil is deciding which Starfleet service division he would be a member of out of Command, Engineering, Marine Service Combatant, Science, Medical and Psionic. I’m going to make an Engineer.

There are a series of skills that each character has. There are basic skills that each member of Starfleet has plus the skills acquired for the service division and branch. Apparently the Engineering division has only one branch, Technical. As a member of Starfleet, each person has a rank. They could be enlisted or an officer. This was the first dice roll of the game as the rank was randomly assigned. 2d6 and check the chart for your division. Kovil rolled a 10 which resulted in a Lieutenant (j.g.) rank. And, for some reason, you roll for the seniority of your character. Afterwards you come up with the Professional and Heroic Reputation scores along with the Initial Background Ratings. (boy there are a lot of these things in here, I wonder if they will all add up in the end)

Now, that I’ve received my “free” skill points, I get to use Initial Character Improvement Points (which is 56 to start out with plus some bonus points based upon my seniority). Character improvement points can be awarded after adventures to improve your characters. These can be spent on skills or characteristics. Now that we have our final characteristics and skills, we add the two together and divide by 2 (round down) to determine how many d6 dice you roll when using that skill. Ugh, this is a lot of complication, but now this section is finally done.

Now comes the section where you determine how much damage you can take in various forms. These include Stun Damage and Lethal Damage. Had a few movement stats to fill out. Oh gheez, now you get 10 more points to put in to skills that are just personal interests. While this is a kewl idea, I swear this paperwork never ends. Had I known this section was here, I wouldn’t have picked a few things in this category earlier.

There is a whole page for equipment, which is assigned before missions. So yea, I’m done making this character and I’m only scanning in the sheet that I actually filled stuff out on. There was still a few blank spaces, but I think I’m done.

Afterthoughts:

While going through the branches, it looked like the had some branches pretty well fleshed out while others seemed lacking. There was a lot of focus on rank and seniority while trying to warn players not to abuse it. I haven’t seen this come up in other system documentation.

I don’t know what it is, but the way this rule book is laid out has made my eyes glaze over. Eventually I was wishing that they could just get to the point when things were being explained. I seriously doubt I’d play this system without seeing it in action first. While it’s a Star Trek game and I want to homebrew for them, this one may be on the bottom of the list. I haven’t heard of anyone playing this game.

I did get the urge to make an actual checklist for character creation that would have helped.

Additional Notes:

10 more days left in the 31 day challenge. We can do this. You can do this. You can still jump in and have fun if you want. That is all this is for, is to have fun. I’m learning a lot. Some good, some bad, but I’m learning. I’m having fun, when my college age kid calls me every night one of the things she asks is “What character did you make today?”

Coming Up Next:

Werewolf The Apocalypse

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Dungeons and Dragons, Role Playing Games

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 20: Dungeons and Dragons B/X Edition

So in the 2022 Character Creation Challenge, I’ve made characters for the Dungeons and Dragons-Holmes Basic edition. In the 2021 challenge I had created a character for the Dungeons and Dragons BECMI edition. Today I am creating a character for Dungeons and Dragons B/X edition. Back when I first started playing any role playing games, I don’t know if my first character was a Holmes Basic or a Dungeons and Dragons B/X edition. I just know it was one of those two because I didn’t get my own BECMI basic book until a few months later.

As with the Holmes entry, I’m going to create the character by the rules as written and let fate decide what we end up with. (makes clacking sounds with the dice). OK, the highest is Charisma at 15 (not a prime requisite for any class in this edition) and the next is Wisdom at 13. Everything was OK except for a Dex of 8 (yikes). Constitution and Charisma are the attributes that cannot be raised or lowered. No attribute can be lowered past 9, so I can’t make any adjustments to what I rolled. STR- 9, INT- 10, WIS- 13, DEX- 8, CON- 10, CHA-15. Sounds like this character will be a Cleric with some good looks but is slightly clumsy. Rolled a 4 for hit points (not bad for a d6) and this guy is going to have a Lawful alignment.

Staring with 120 GP to select equipment. Because of the character’s negative Dex adjustment, I elected to buy plate armor. Yea I had to sacrifice a few other things that I could have picked up at the beginning (Holy Water), but if the character survives by not getting hit, he’ll be able to pick up more equipment later.

Brother Alexander was a young novice at the Church of Karameikos in the town of Dravin. He became quite popular amongst his fellow priests and the congregation in general. After a year of service, the head of the church in Dravin informed him that he had been called to travel the roads of the Grand Duchy. He was to spread the word, assist church members and rid the land of evil that was threatening the faithful. Despite his friends warnings, Alexander accepted the calling. After several weeks of weapons training, he was given a suit of plate armor, a shield and some equipment and was instructed to find others that could assist in his quest.

Afterthoughts:

Oh man, I had so many memories opening up this book again. It always puts a smile on my face when I see the artwork and text. There were so many possibilities when we were playing the game. If a rule didn’t fit, we made adjustments and kept on playing. That was the way it needed to be.

Not once, or twice, but three times they have you a summary of how to create a character. Plus they showed you a sample character sheet that was already filled out. Game designers, this is how you do it. I think it took me longer to look up religions in the Grand Duchy of Karameikos and come up with a backstory than it did to create the character.

Additional Notes:

There haven’t been any new blogs discovered that are participating in the #CharacterCreationChallenge. I am still re-tweeting any twitter posts that use the official hashtag. I’m also liking Facebook posts as I find them. Facebook’s hashtag search isn’t as good as Twitters.

Coming Up Next:

Prime Directive 1st Edition

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 19: Amazing Adventures 5E

I was able to pick up PDF copy of Amazing Adventures 5E at an end-of-year sale on DriveThruRPG. While the setup in the book is mostly 1930s-40s pulp adventure, there are also sections about modern, supernatural and future. There is even a section about importing your fantasy 5E characters over just in case the DM wants to use a portal/time travel/magic hole/etc. on the players. I thought this would make an interesting entry in the 2022 Character Creation Challenge.

As mentioned above, this is a sandbox game. Since I’m lacking a GM to tell me what world I’m creating a character in, I’m sticking with the pulp style presented and creating a character from that. Derick Fieldstone will be an ex-cop turned detective who moved from the east coast of the United States to Bay City along the west coast.

There is the standard attributes in a D20 based 5E system. To generate these stats the rules recommends starting each stat at 7 and then spending 36 points to increase them to the max of 18. There are two optional methods (4d6 drop the lowest and arrange or a couple of presets) but I’m going to go with the points system for this entry.

I wrote down the basics for my class. My HP, XP, Equipment, AC, Speed, Alignment, etc. In Amazing Adventures you only get a feat at 1st level if you reduce four ability scores by 1. I’ve already gone through the ability scores so I don’t want to adjust them now.

Under “Rounding Out The Character” I selected the Law Enforcement background since Derick was once a cop. I already had the proficiency listed and weapons. So I selected a car. I could randomly roll a Personality Trait, Ideal, Bond and Flaw and write a brief description on the character sheet.

Amazing Adventures has Inspiration Points. If you play your character that is true to the personality, the GM can reward you with inspiration points. These can be used to gain advantages to yourself or an ally, avoid death, or just plain luck. It sounds like the luck and fate points used in other games. All new characters start with 5 Inspiration Points.

In your class you gain some starting equipment tool-kits and packs. This boils down to “what would your character have that fits the character” as common items. My gumshoe wouldn’t have a rocket ship, but he could have a car. Each character does have a starting wealth rating as determined by your class. This rating can be increased through game play.

Here is the character sheet. I think I’m done.

Afterthoughts:

I was happy that there was some suggestions and guidelines for the character background in “Rounding Out the Character”. Too many times I’ve seen rulebooks state “Pick a flaw”. Um, yea I’m not good at that sometimes.

I thought it was funny that the character sheet had a last will and testament.

Yes I could see myself playing this game.

Additional Notes:

We are coming to the back end of the challenge. Some of these have been a real challenge. By this time last year I was in a grove when I was creating characters. This year I’ve noticed that I haven’t reached that level. I wonder if it’s because this is a larger batch of systems that I’m not use to?

If you are still going, good for you. Keep going. If you’ve had real life get in the way, feel free to jump back in when you can.

Coming Up Next:

Dungeons and Dragons B/X Edition

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games, Science Fiction

2022 Character Creation Challenge Day 18: Cyberpunk v3.0

I recall playing the first Cyberpunk that came out. I even posted my Solo character previously on this blog. So when a copy of Cyberpunk V3.0 fell into my hands thanks to a friend, I knew that I had to use it for the 2022 Character Creation Challenge.

In my quick research before starting this blog entry I discovered that the v3.0 game was different from the original first edition system by quite a bit. Which is fine because it’s been so long since I’ve played Cyberpunk that I’ve forgotten how the system ran. I have some good memories of our gaming sessions, but I couldn’t describe the system now.

So starting brand new, lets crack open the book and see what we can come up with. Looks like you can select from a template and add a few modifications. Making sure that was correct, I flipped through the book. Sure enough there is an advanced section (looks like they also have basic and advanced combat rules as well) with lifepaths that look very detailed along with Character Points for buying stats. In the past when I’ve created a few characters for the challenge, I’ve pretended that a bunch of friends are sitting down with the core rulebook just as this game came out and we are trying it for the first time. I’m going to run with that theme on this entry and take a template and create this character.

I will talk about some of the attributes used within the game and briefly talk about the points use in advanced character creation. The attributes are broken down into three categories. Physical: Reflexes, Dexterity, Constitution, Strength, Body and Movement. Mental: Intelligence and Willpower. Technical: Technique (that’s it). Normal people have a score of 2-4 in each attribute. One point equals one point in attribute. The number of points is in question. You can randomly roll 13D10 and that is your starting number, or roll 1d10 for each stat then roll 3d10 for extra points to add to your stats. There is also something called Flash Characters that with a single roll you get a bunch of pre-generated stats (I guess that would be useful for a quick NPC). And the last option is the Referee can declare what type of game this is (Average to Major Hero) and give the points based on that declaration. There are then some Derived Statistics generated from the primary statistics. Stun, Hits, Stun Defense, Recovery, Run, Resistance, Luck Endurance and Humanity. Afterwards you would choose perks, talents, skills and equipment.

So, going back to the templates you have the different “classes” within the game. Solo (independent fighters), Media (reporters), Tech, Netrunner (hackers), Divemaster, Subjocks, Shifters and Waleboys (water nomads who live on the sea), Mechajocks (drive large fighting robots), Imaginators (transforming robot drivers, I think?), Idols (famous people, called Rockerboys in the first game), Security Ops, Scout, Panzerboy (tank drivers), Warriors (fighters on the roads), Shamans, City Fighter, Traders (merchants), Beastmasters (control bioform pets), Surfriders (independent water nomads), Transporters (long haul drivers), Protector (law enforcement), Wiseman (thinkers), Dragoons (heavy combat), Combat Fighter and Streetdealer (rogues). I don’t recall any water based characters in the first game. Some of these redundant sounding types may be a part of different AltCult (Alternative Cultures, or groups of people following the same ideals).

I never played a Netrunner in the original game, so I’m going to pick one now. His handle will be FreeJack. According to the RAW, you take the already provided statistics and you can move any of the three basic stats on the template. Afterwards you generate the derived stats. I liked the fact that there was some freebie equipment and then pick six from a list for a starting character. In other games the equipment allocation had seemed to be missing so I had to guess.

It looks like there is an entire section on lifepaths depending upon your AltCult that can fill in a lot of details or you can write them out. If this was for a full game, I’d get this section filled in. I think the basics to start play are on the sheet.

Afterthoughts:

Thank you to the game designers for giving us a character sheet breakdown in the book. Including details like this help in character creation.

Would I play this game, doubtful. Not because it looks bad or anything, but because the new Cyberpunk Red has been released. Any players are probably using the latest system.

Additional Notes:

I’m still recovering from the weekend’s website fiasco so I haven’t found a lot of other blogs that are participating. Please let me know if you see any.

Out of curiosity, I did a YouTube search for Fantasy Imperium. I only found two review videos and no game play videos. They did not give any high marks to the game at all. They even dove deeper into the issues than I had. But they were also doing full reviews instead of just creating characters. If you would like, you can see them Here and Here.

Coming Up Next:

Amazing Adventures

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