Posted in: Quotes, Star Trek

Daily Star Trek Quotes: January 23-29

How it feels trying to get through this month on many fronts.

Here are the Daily Star Trek Quotes that will appear on the @STrekQuotes Twitter account and the @STrekQuotes Mastodon account for the week of January 23rd through January 29th.

January 23
Star Trek: Picard premiered on this date in 2020 with the episode Remembrance. https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Star_Trek:_Picard #StarTrek #StarTrekPicard #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

“The pyramids were a symbol of colossal vanity. If you want to look for a historical analogy: Dunkirk.” Picard- Remembrance, Stardate: Unknown #StarTrek #StarTrekPicard #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 24
“When can you start?” Janeway “Me?” Kes “It’s your idea. It’s your project.” Janeway- Parallax, Stardate: 48439.7 #StarTrek #StarTrekVOY #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 25
“What would you say the odds on our getting out of here?” Kirk “Difficult to be precise, Captain. I should say approximately 7,824.7 to one.” Spock “Difficult to be precise?” Kirk- Errand of Mercy, Stardate: 3198.4 #StarTrek #StarTrekTOS #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 26
“And what does Section 31 do apart from kidnapping Starfleet officers?” Dr. Bashir “We search out and identify potential dangers to the Federation.” Sloan “And once identified?” Dr. Bashir “We deal with them.” Sloan “How?” Dr. Bashir “Quietly.” Sloan- Inquisition, Stardate: Unknown #StarTrek #StarTrekDS9 #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 27
“Stories often have happy endings. It’s life that throws you for a loop.” Dr. Ira Graves- The Schizoid Man, Stardate: 42437.5 #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

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

“Studying is good, but in real life, there’s gonna be times when you need to make a mess of things before you can fix them. Like how I’m gonna have to cut this guy’s foot off, so we can grow him a new one.” Dr. T’Ana- Mining The Mind’s Mines, Stardate: 58256. #StarTrek #StarTrekLowerDecks #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 29
“My shipmates have calmly faced any number of dangers, and yet a simple movie can bring tears to their eyes.” Dr. Phlox- Dear Doctor, Date: Unknown #StarTrek #StarTrekENT #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 22: BareBones Fantasy Role-Playing Game

The creator of BareBones Fantasy Role-Playing Game sent me a complementary PDF copy of the system after I had done some favors for him. I wasn’t expecting anything in return but he wanted to give me something for my kindness. So I promised that I’d use the game in the 2023 Character Creation Challenge so that others might find out about this system. As with the other reviews where I have some sort of connection with the people involved, I’ll let my mini-review be free of any influence.

This system was released by DwD Studios. This is the same company that also released quite a few other games that I’ve used in past challenges. These include FrontierSpace, Covert Ops and White Lies. In fact, Covert Ops and FrontierSpace used the BareBones system that was started with the game I’m using today. So this should be a quick an simple build.

BareBones Fantasy uses D10s and is a percentile based system. The book is 84 pages long. The character sheet is a single page. The character creation steps start on page 5. There are four attributes which are Strength (STR), Dexterity (DEX), Logic (LOG) and Willpower (WIL). I’ve been instructed to roll 5D10 and add 30 to the roll for each one. I get to select which score goes to which attribute so I can decide what type of character I want to play. There are racial modifiers as well with each of the races being the standard four (Elf, Dwarf, Halfling and Human). I think I’m going to make Traxxis an Elf spellcaster. I rolled my attributes and wrote them down along with the elven abilities.

Next there are nine skills. I’m instructed to pick one skill as my primary and one as my secondary. They get +20 and +10 respectively in the P/S column on the sheet. All other skills get a +0. I, of course, made the primary skill spellcaster and added the level 1 there. I wanted to make my secondary skill the scholar, but I wouldn’t be able to use the points since I have to have at least one level in the skill to use it. So I’ll make the secondary Warrior (ranged) so I can use a bow. Something I figured most elves would know. You then calculate the scores that don’t require a level.

There are positive descriptors and negative descriptors about each character. I was instructed to select one for each type. These are a word or a phrase. For the beneficial I came up with “Quick Reader”. I’m following the typical elf stereotype that we’ve seen in various fantasy movies because I selected “Irritated with Dwarves”. He doesn’t hate them, he’s just not fond of them.

Step six has me selecting a moral code for the character. This is a behavioral trait that is used as the alignment in BareBones Fantasy. There are five aspects with each item in a set opposite of each other. I select one of the two items and then decide if this character is somewhat, very or totally that aspect. I’m starting to recall this from FrontierSpace (I kept the page up where I made that character to compare).

The next step was to select equipment and find out Traxxis’ starting money. I was instructed to select and six items from an equipment page (that does not exceed 100gp in value) and to roll 2D10 for my starting gold. There were some Strength minimums for certain armor and equipment. This made sense, but affected some of the items that I was going to select. I was happy to see that there was a “survival pack” that contained most items common to adventurers out in the wild.

The last step is to calculate the final details. This includes Body Points, Initiative, Damage Reduction (how well does your armor protect you) and other items. I wrote these down. There was no space on the sheet for the brief background but Traxxis was told by his father to make his fortune out in the world before he was allowed to settle down in the family forest. It was his way of making his children self-sufficient, so Traxxis vowed not to return until he could find several spells that were lost to the lands.

I realized that somehow I had skipped over the spell section. I went back and read the description for the Spellcaster skill and wrote down the spells listed for my character. Since spellcaster is my primary skill, Traxxis gets to pick two spells besides the ones automatically given to him (high wizardry, low wizardry, wizard eye and wizard hand). Since it won’t be on the scan, I selected Protection and Offensive Strike.

Afterthoughts:

I liked how the character sheet had notes for each of the skills. I also liked how the moral code made more sense than just Neutral or Chaotic Good. Not only could I see this being good in the roleplay aspect but in the homebrewing aspect as well. I ended up getting lost in the GMs section when I should have been scanning the character sheet. I could see myself playing this game, especially with my love of D100 percentile systems.

I probably should have saved this system for one of my busy days. The character creation process was pretty quick and easy even with me accidentally skipping my spell selection.

Additional Notes:

I had someone reach out to me wanting to know if they could still start the challenge. The answer is a definite yes! Remember this is for fun. If you want to play catch up or just go into February, you can do so.

One of the things I found out about the RPG Pub message boards is that they had also participated in the Character Creation Challenge in 2021 and 2022. I had a blast going through the older entries. Saw a few that I had done and saw some new systems as well. This was the point of having this challenge. Giving people the chance to make a character for a game that they might not be currently playing and introducing some of these games to others.

Coming Up Next:

D20 Modern

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 21: Strike! Tactical Combat and Heedless Adventure

So I picked up Strike! Tactical Combat and Heedless Adventure from the same source that I picked up John Carter of Mars and US Marshals, by trading my Judge Dredd RPG books. So I will be creating a character for this system for the 2023 Character Creation Challenge.

I had never heard of this game before the trade proposal. The book is 207 pages long and was published by Jim McGarva in 2015. It appears this was financed through a KickStarter campaign. This appears to be a generic system like the D6 System or GURPS.

So since I’m creating both a character and a setting, we are going with a modern setting. The character will be Craig “T-Bone” Miller, a freelance gun-smuggler. If you have the money, he can delver most any type of weapon. He grew up in the southeastern portion of the United States and realized after a stint in the military that he had no desire to let anyone be his boss again. So when his term was up, he went independent on the advice of some buddies who were also smugglers.

There is a two page character sheet. The “Creating Your Character” listing is on page 16. It states that once you have a character concept, then come up with a background and origin (done, see above). From these two items I get to select reasonable skills that T-Bone would know. Looking at the list, the veteran is probably the closest. I wrote these skills down.

Next was selecting gear or picking a kit. There wasn’t really a list of gear since this was a generic game. So I could just say the character has certain items. I think. As for the kit, there was a limited number listed and I selected wayfarer (aka world traveler). But there wasn’t anything for me to write down because the items listed didn’t come into effect until I entered that part of the world and made certain successes or costs while there. This is confusing.

Next the book had me jump to the second part of the character creation on page 98 in what they called the tactical part of the book. I believe this is where the second page of the character sheet comes in. This really looks videogamish. Now I’m choosing a class? None of the classes listed even came close to what I was thinking. Now, I’m thinking that I’m just done. Usually by the end of the character creation process, I have a good idea how the game will be run. I don’t know if I accomplished that with this game. Here is what I have for the character sheet. I never added anything to the second page.

Afterthoughts:

The page numbers listed in the create your character were incorrect and off by a few pages. This resulted in my having to hunt around to find the information needed.

The descriptions were really, really basic. If I were to run a game with this system, I’d probably end up writing half to 2/3rd of the items that my players would need to run the world it was set in. Other generic systems are a little bit more fleshed out, so I’d probably defer to one of those games.

I can see why this book was traded away. I’ll probably put it in the trade pile myself. I think this game wanted to be more of a tactical game and added a little bit of RPG to it to try to pull in that audience.

I liked the use of the color codes on the character sheet. So there’s something positive about this publication.

Additional Notes:

A member of the RPG.net message board reached out to me to let me know about another message board that had a very active Character Creation Challenge thread. On the RPG Pub message boards there was a thread that was already up to 11 pages. I have joined this message board to add my characters there and added the link to the 2023 challenge page. Thank you for letting me know.

Coming Up Next:

Barebones Fantasy by DwD Studios

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

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

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 20: Cyber Generation 2nd Edition

The friend who gave me a bunch of games in 2021 (he was clearing out his shelves) had included R. Talsorian Games Inc. Cyber Generation 2nd Edition along with quite a few others. Because I was using Cyberpunk v3 in 2022, I held off on using Cyber Generation until the 2023 Character Creation Challenge.

There is a single page character sheet. The character creation process starts on page 13 (spoiler hint, there is a full summary on page 85) and is handled in a narrative fashion instead of providing bullet points. You are guided by a character called Morgan Blackhand who is talking to you through a series of electronic communiques trying to keep your young character safe from the Dead Boys and Zombie Girls. The first thing Morgan needs to know is which yogang you belong to. A list of 18 different groups, all with different abilities and specialties. Basically these are the character classes. Looking through all of them, some sounded very interesting, but the one I selected for my character (who I decided is going to be age 16) is an ArcoRunner. If you’ve ever watched the youtube videos of urban explorers sneaking into abandoned buildings and locations, that is what the ArcoRunner is. The rules had me select my name (Side Wire), age and sex. I also filled in my description, the YoGang skill (Tunneling) and I selected the equipment that a member of this YoGang would have.

The next step that Morgan instructs you to do is to run to a safe-house. He provides a hardcopy map and tells you to get going. The Referee is instructed with some basics on how to run the scenario. It appears to be like a funnel that we’ve seen in Dungeon Crawl Classics. If the first character doesn’t make it, the Referee is instructed to have the player start another character that will already be at the safe-house when the other players get there. I read through the instructions for the Referee and I can see how this would set up the tone of the game, but the rules for combat and spotting were pretty simplistic. Probably to get the players in the mood of the dark dystopian world that this is set in.

At the safe-house, Morgan then gives them an assessment to determine their stats. These are INT (Intelligence), REF (Reflexes), COOL (Cool, resistance to stress and presence), TECH (Technical Ability), LUCK (Luck), ATT (Attractiveness), MOVE (Movement), EMP (Empathy, aka Charisma) and BODY (Body Type, aka Strength, Endurance and Constitution). The player is provided with 50 points to allocate between the different stats. Each stat must have a minimum of 2 with 5 being considered an average stat and 8 being really good. I dumped a bunch of points in INT since that was the favored of my YoGang, used very little for ATT and EMP and then averaged out the rest. That was easy.

You have 40 points to spend on various skills. 1 minimum and 8 max. This includes the YoGang skill. I allocated what I thought would be useful for my character.

The next ref opportunity is to run a scenario in the safe-house where all of the players get to know each other. There are a couple of NPCs that can also be used by the ref if needed.

By now I had found the actual character creation summary on page 85. Considering how late it was, I dropped the narrative creation process and just finished out the character. Each character gets $1,000 to shop for equipment at the mall. The rules do state that you get the clothing mentioned in your YoGang description plus the special equipment you already selected. Anything else needs to be purchased.

The last step is to randomly roll for the character’s cyberevolved type. All characters were hit with the carbon plague. This is a type of nanotechnology that is set loose on the population and changes them (those that survived the changes) when they hit the age of 20. Since the PCs are under this age, they may not know what they are going to get. The Referee should be role-playing the emergence of the evolution the characters will go through. Since this is not known to my character, I’m going to leave this section blank on the sheet. Which is posted below.

Afterthoughts:

I loved when slang was used in the text, there was a sidebar (called hypertext) explaining what the slang meant.

I’ve made characters with the narrative style before. I can understand that this can be used to get the player into the feel of the game or even teach them the rules of the game. But I also wish a regular character creation checklist was provided. Later, I realized that this checklist is on the character sheet itself. That made things handy. And even later on page 85 there was a character creation summary. By the time I had found this, I had already read through several chapters.

Additional Notes:

Yes I’m still finding new blogs that are participating in the Character Creation Challenge. The list of links on the challenge page has been updated.

I’ve also been introduced to a game that I may have to put on the list for the 2024 challenge. A game called Straight to VHS. Someone used this as one of their entries on one of the message boards.

Coming Up Next:

Strike! Tactical Combat and Heedless Adventure

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

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

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 19: The Agency

I picked up The Agency: A Roleplaying Game of Sixties Spies and the Supernatural in the same Doctors Without Borders charity sale that I picked up When the Moon Hangs Low. I’ve always been interested in espionage games because I am a big fan of the Spy-Fi genre and I wanted to use this one for the Character Creation Challenge. The world setup for The Agency is that the players play the part of 1960’s British spies that are trying to protect the United Kingdom (and the world) from supernatural horrors. Think James Bond and The Avengers vs vampires and evil cultists. The Agency would recruit witnesses to help them fight this threat. This usually resulted in a wide variety of characters

There is a one page character sheet and the creation summary starts on page 25. The first step listed is to create a concept. Basically a background and occupation for the character using the spy series and movies from the 60’s and 70’s as inspiration. This character will be a photographer who shoots both wild animals and wild women. The next step is to pick a name that a 60’s/70’s espionage action hero would have. It gave a list of possible first and last names to choose from or you could choose your own. Pulling names from the list, this character will be named Simon Steele.

A character sketch is the next step. While I didn’t actually need to draw my character (thank the gods) I did have to come up with three things that people would notice when they encountered the character. This would include fashion, mannerisms and a prop. For his prop he either carried a camera with him or a viewing lens to “get the shot”. When he wasn’t trying to get the best photo, he was trying to get under the skirt of a willing model. Steele always wore tight fitting clothing fashionable for the London swinging scene with tweed coats and looked like Michael Caine.

The name is Steele…

Finally we are coming to the skills of the character. There are two sets of skills. Action (fight drive, athletics, etc.) and Ingenuity: (evade, technology, wit, etc.). For Steele, I selected Persuade at 5 (he had to encourage his targets to pose the right way for the photo shoot) and Track at 4 (he had to find the subjects he wanted to photograph both in the urban and jungle environment. For those skills I didn’t select, they are assumed to be ranked at 3 dice.

What are the heroic bonuses and flaws that the character has. This was explained in the rules as “something that would set the character apart both in a positive way and as a flawed human. There is a list provided in the game, but I wonder if the player came up with a good suggestion if the Director would allow it? For Steele, his bonus is resources. He was born into a rich family that allowed him to turn his hobby into a career. Lustful is the flaw that fit this character to a T.

The rules explains that all characters start with one Karma point. This can be spent to power a bonus. Present on the character sheet are three status boxes (Dazed, Disadvantaged and Down, this sounds like the character’s health). There is also a section for Motifs. The rules explain that this is a player resource instead of one used by the character. It can be used to heal or aid a fellow player. The motif is a recurring imagery or fictional element associated with the character. The rules kinda cut off here “What do they do when (line ends)” so I’m not quite sure what this is exactly. Hopefully it explains a little bit better later in the book. Looking down, it appears that if you can incorporate the motif into the roleplay, then you can give an automatic success to another player like they had used a karma point or heal themselves. Looking at the sample characters there was “change of costume”, “flashbacks” or “party lifestyle”. I’m still not certain what to put here so I borrowed “riches & excess” from one of the sample characters. Here is the character sheet.

Afterthoughts:

I’m not much of a “fashonista” so thinking of the look of the character was different for me. Do I go too campy and stereotypical? I tried to keep it within the spirit of the game.

Lots of good introductions to the world. I would have loved to seen a section of how the dice are used in the game. I know there are threat pools and the like but are the players attempting to beat a number or the Director’s rolls? I finally found the answer on page 49. When presented with a challenge the player rolls 3-5 dice (depending upon the skill used) and any roll of 4-6 is counted as a success. The Director rolls threat dice (number depending upon the difficulty) and if the player has more successes than the Director, the player has accomplished the action. For the total number of successes, the player can describer what happened. I guess that gives them some narration in the game as well.

I would be interested in play testing the game. After the play test, I’d probably know more if I wanted to play in a campaign or homebrew for this system.

Additional Notes:

It felt like I was very busy today besides creating this character. I was also trying to decide what games I was going to schedule for the upcoming Salt-Con. In one way it was sad because the lone Dune: Adventures in the Imperium table was quickly filled up. However, it looks like I might get a chance to actually play the James Bond RPG. That would be kewl.

Coming Up Next:

Cyber Generation 2nd edition

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

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

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 18: OSRIC

OSRIC or Old School Reference and Index Compilation, is a retro-clone of Advanced Dungeons and Dragons 1st Edition. And you can pick up the PDF of OSRIC for free at DriveThruRPG using the link above. I have many fond memories of AD&D 1e, but I’ve never tried this retro-clone. So for Day 18 of the Character Creation Challenge, we are going to create a character using the rules in this book.

The book actually explains that OSRIC was geared towards players who were already familiar with 1st edition systems. In the PDF the character creation process starts on page 1 (after the preamble). The character sheet is two pages long. The standard six ability scores are presented and you roll 3D6 down the line. I’m sticking with this method and letting the dice decide what type of character we are making. With Dex being the highest at 15, we are making a thief. Looking at the races, we are going with half-elf who just goes by the name Myrin. If you’ve played AD&D 1e, you know the drill. So far nothing process wise appears to be different (part of the reason I selected this game for one of my busy days).

Afterthoughts:

I noticed that in OSRIC they had the attributes listed STR, DEX, CON, INT, WIS and CHA instead of STR, INT, WIS, DEX, CON and CHA as it was used in 1st edition. I liked how the savings throws were re-worded slightly (aimed magic items) and how the alignments had examples (lawful good = crusader but neutral good = benefactor) that really helped.

I also liked how simplistic the character sheet was. It wasn’t overly complicated. I think I also enjoyed how the book was primarily just rules. No excess.

In my early D&D days, I preferred B/X or BECMI to AD&D 1e, but I could see myself playing OSRIC.

Additional Notes:

I found one of the roleplaying games that I was going to use for this year, but forgot about. Unfortunately its not one that I can just slip into one of my easy days and all of the games on my tough days (that I give more time to go over the rules) are booked up with games I really want to use. So I may end up making a bonus 32nd day. We will have to see as the time gets closer. Every year I’ve had to make an audible and swap out a game for one reason or another.

Coming Up Next:

The Agency

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

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

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 17: US Marshals

As I explained in my Character Creation Challenge entry for John Carter of Mars, I traded my Judge Dredd books for some new games. US Marshals: A Shared Storytelling Game of Justice in the American Wild West was one of those games. I’ve created a character for Tall Tales B/X in past challenges. I wonder how this will stack up. The cover has a logo for something called the Difference Engine.

There is a two page character sheet. The sheet itself wasn’t available on Fat Goblin Games’ website so I emailed them and they sent me a copy. In the book I turned to page 14 where the start of the character creation system begins. The first step is to choose your nickname (along with your regular character name). So this character is going to be Leonard “Lariat” Daniels.

Next come the attributes. There are only three of them and you choose which one gets the +4, +3 or +2. They are Mental, Physical and Social. Pretty straightforward. With how tough I wanted my marshal to be I selected Mental +2, Physical +4 and Social +3.

For step three, each character selects two talents and two flaws. There is a list in the book. I decided that Lariat was a former soldier and that while he was in the service he was good at handling animals so he was a wrangler. For his flaws, I selected Blatherkite (talks too much which annoys people) and I was really having a hard time choosing a second one. A lot of these were really debilitating when it came to creating a “heroic” cowboy type character. I ended up selecting Dark Secret, which would have been decided later with the GM.

Each character starts with a health score of nine (all of the attributes added together) and one grit. A grit can be used to add to your rolls or character advancement. Luckily with equipment, it is pretty much, as a member of the US Marshals you have this in your inventory. You keep track of what you would have on hand. At your office or house it would be assumed that you would have some common equipment found there. There is a section where you get to name a special item (they give the example of bowler hat) and if you win a challenge against the GM, you get it. I could see this as an interesting way to show the way the dice work in the game. No GM, so I’ll just assume that I won one of the challenges and my special item is a Spanish Doubloon that he wears on a leather strap as a good luck charm. We finally get to roll a 2D6 and the results is how much cash that Lariat has on hand. He has $8 in a billfold.

The last step is to write down your character’s description and background. Lariat was a veteran of the Civil War on the Union side. When he ended his service, he was recruited by the US Marshals to help enforce Federal laws in the wild west. Here is the character sheet.

Afterthoughts:

The dead tree version of the book I’m using has certain words “linked” like they were hyperlinks. I can see that being useful in the PDF version of the game. It kind of stood out in the printed version that I had.

The game looked interesting. I think I’d want to see how it played out before I decided if I was going to homebrew for it.

Additional Notes:

On one of the RPG message boards participating in the Character Creation Challenge, a participant elected to make a FASA Star Trek character after reading my earlier entry. Apparently they were making decisions on which character to make next on the fly. They are braver than I am. With how busy my schedule is I really need to attempt the easier systems on difficult days.

Coming Up Next:

OSIRC

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

Posted in: Character Creation Challenge, Role Playing Games

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 16: Against the Darkmaster

So one of the roleplaying games that I had always seen advertised in my early playing days was Middle Earth Role Playing. While it always looked kewl, my gaming friends were all using the various flavors of Dungeons and Dragons to scratch their fantasy RPG itch. So I never really had an interest in playing the game. However I did see that there was a large fanbase for MERP, so it was no surprise when some fans released their own retroclone called Against the Darkmaster. The abbreviation for this game that was used in the book is VsD.

In 2022 I was lucky to find Against the Darkmaster on a special sale at DriveThruRPG. I wanted to use it not only for the Character Creation Challenge, but for another RPG blog project that I’m hoping to release later this year. So my Day 16 entry will be a character for VsD. I’m not certain what to expect here, so let’s dive right in.

There is a three page character sheet and the character creation steps start in chapter 2 on page 14. As with most RPGs, you start out by generating the stats for the character. These stats are Brawn (BRN), Swiftness (SWI), Fortitude (FOR) all three of these are self-explanatory, Wits (WIT) think cleverness and mental agility, Wisdom (WSD) and Bearing (BEA) which is basically charisma. There are two options to generate these stats. Point buy (boring) or random roll. Loving the randomness of the dice you can guess which way I went. I roll a D100 six times and consult a table to see what the stat value is (between -20 to +35). Then I can assign them to the stats as I see fit. One of the rolls came up as 100, so that was the rare +35 score. But the very next roll was a 17 which resulted in a -5 so I can see how it would balance out.

The second step is to choose the kin and culture of the character. This is basically the races and some can be restricted by the gamemaster if need be. Besides your standard four fantasy races (human, elf, dwarf and hafling) there are variants (Dusk Elf or High Man) and some that I didn’t recognize (what is a Firbolg?) So I read the descriptions for each. There are modifiers to the stats for the type of kin you select. Some of these sounded interesting (Firbolg are horned giants with a curse on them) while others made me raise an eyebrow (High Man?) Do I go with a race that I don’t see in other games or stick with one of the basics for comparison? This would have been a good time to talk with the GM to see what they had planned. But as I am doing this for the challenge, I’ll have to wing it. I don’t think I’ve made a dwarf character yet this year so this character is going to be a dwarf. Luckily there is only one type as compared to the various elf flavors.

An interesting step is next, choosing the culture. This could set your skill sets, starting outfits and different worldviews. There are suggested ones for your kin, but you can select anything you would like. So if you really wanted to play a wildfolk that was raised in the city, you could. The different cultures are arctic, city, deep (aka underground), desert, fey (nature loving), hill, marauders (NPC only), noble, pastoral (farming communities), plains, seafaring, weald (wildlands) and woad (primitive). Being a dwarf, I elected to go with the deep culture. It was interesting reading the descriptions. I could see how it could lead to some roleplaying at the table.

Step three is to select the vocation of my dwarven character. This would allow me to select certain skills that he would have. These are basically classes so I selected warrior. Some of the other vocations did sound interesting, but dwarves in this game are not magic users. I was a little confused with the development points and the selection of skills. Your vocation gets some bonuses with certain skills, but do I have to spend the DP on them to get these bonuses? I’m thinking no, they come automatically during the character creation process, then I add to them spending my DP on other skills. I think. I’m going to run with that and perhaps someone will correct me. After reading several pages and not getting a clear picture, I decided to move on.

The next step is background and equipment. The backgrounds are what the character did before they became an adventurer. You have background points (as determined by your Kin) that you can use to select a background. Minor background items only cost one BP while the major tier usually cost 2-3. With the 4 points that I had available, I selected Battle Hardened (major) and Vigilant (minor). I wrote down the starting equipment (thank you for making that part simple).

Step six was to select a passion. According to the rules, this is a statement that tells something really important about the character. The standard passions deal with nature, allegiance and motivation. I believe you select one for all three categories. However you can select one and decide the others in gaming sessions since it is encouraged to create these with input from your GM and fellow players. So for nature I selected “I only trust those in my clan.” There was also a section on drive points (how many does a starting character get?) and a heroic path. This last item is something that is supposed to happen to the character as they progress. There are some bonuses to the statistics, but I’m not certain how it is used by the GM. Again, I’d probably be leaning on the experience of the GM in this section.

The last step (which was also mentioned in another step) was to select a name. This dwarf is Heathgar son of Kragin.

Oh there was a character creation recap chapter after the pages talking about experience. Let’s see if it helps me fill in any of the gaps that I missed? OK you get five drive points. I’m still confused by the skill point allocations. I can see where they made efforts, but I don’t know why but the text just wasn’t explaining it to me. So here is the character sheet. I didn’t scan the last page since it listed spells and magic and I was not using it during creation. There was a section on the 3rd page of the character sheet that covered animals and experience point tracking.

Afterthoughts:

I really wish the PDF I had received was bookmarked. I’ve discovered that when doing a lot of first time reading, using the bookmarks in PDFs has really helped. Later I remembered that there were two versions of the PDF. The HD version that I was looking at, and another copy. When I checked the non-HD version, it had bookmarks (thank heavens). It was getting annoying having to scroll around.

I think I did the skills right, but I don’t know if I got them completely. This is where I probably would have asked questions to an experienced GM.

There were also sections where the character creation checklist gave steps, but the chapters later in the book did not match up with them. The end of the chapter with derived attributes stated the character was good to go, but the checklist still had two more steps on it. Probably could have used another run through with the editor. Not a bad thing, just a little disjointed for the first attempt at making a character.

Having the character creation recap follows one of the rules of technical writing. Tell the audience what you are going to tell them. Then tell them. Then tell briefly re-tell them what you just told them.

I think I need to either play a session with a patient GM or watch a good session on video to see if I would want to try this game out. There were some things that I liked when I saw them. They made sense. Then there were other sections that I wished were explained a little bit better. But it’s not a game that would make me run for the hills.

Additional Notes:

I was able to locate another blog that was participating in the Character Creation Challenge. I have added it to the CCC link list on the page. If you know of any that I might be missing, please let me know at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com

Coming Up Next:

US Marshals

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

Posted in: Quotes, Star Trek

Daily Star Trek Quotes: January 16-22

What we were doing on Sunday. Test driving cars.

Here are the Daily Star Trek Quotes that will appear on the @STrekQuotes Twitter account and the @STrekQuotes Mastodon account for the week of January 16th through January 22nd.

January 16
Star Trek: Voyager premiered on this date in 1995 with the episode Caretaker. https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Star_Trek:_Voyager #StarTrek #StarTrekVOY #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

“We should not dwell on what’s been lost, but on all that’s been gained.” Toscat- Caretaker, Stardate: 48315.6 #StarTrek #StarTrekVOY #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 17
Happy Birthday to Isa Briones. @TheIsaBriones https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Isa_Briones #StarTrek #StarTrekPicard #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

“Tell me about Data. What was he like?” Soji- Broken Pieces, Stardate: Unknown #StarTrek #StarTrekPicard #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 18
“Children are a lot stronger than you think. As long as they know you love them they can handle just about anything life throws at them.” LaForge- Imaginary Friend, Stardate: 45832.1 #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 19
“They’re engineers. They’re use to being given a problem to solve and then going out and figuring out how to do it.” O’Brien- Starship Down, Stardate: 49263.5 #StarTrek #StarTrekDS9 #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 20
Remembering DeForest Kelley wo was born on this date in 1920. https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/DeForest_Kelley #StarTrek #StarTrekTOS #StarTrekTNG #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

“Have you got some reason you want my atoms scattered all over space, boy?” Dr. McCoy- Encounter at Farpoint, Stardate: 41153.7 #StarTrek #StarTrekTNG #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

Happy Birthday to Rainn Wilson. @rainnwilson https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Rainn_Wilson #StarTrek #StarTrekDiscovery #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

“I’m neither one for following orders nor giving them. No, the solar winds are my mistress, and I follow her wherever she beckons.” Mudd- Magic to make the Sanest Man Go Mad, Stardate: 2136.8 #StarTrek #StarTrekDiscovery #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 21
(On Humans) “They tend to be easily infatuated with things they find new.” T’Pol- Dear Doctor, Date: Unknown #StarTrek #StarTrekENT #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

January 22
“Then employ one of your own superstitions. Wish me luck.” Spock- The Immunity Syndrome, Stardate: 4307.1 #StarTrek #StarTrekTOS #IDIC #WeAreStarfleet

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

2023 Character Creation Challenge Day 15: Star Fleet Intelligence Manual

When FASA was publishing the various supplements for their Star Trek Role Playing Game line, one of the books was Star Fleet Intelligence. This allowed game masters to set up espionage campaigns for players. To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Star Trek Role Playing Game by FASA, I thought that I would submit an entry into the Character Creation Challenge by creating a Star Fleet intelligence agent. An in honor of my recently departed friend who cut his Star Trek RPG teeth on the FASA game, I’m going to name him Taylor, Roger Taylor.

One of the things that FASA did very well was create the character generation short form. I used this form quite a few times when generating FASA Star Trek characters. For the Star Fleet Intelligence Manual, this form is found on page 92 of the Agent’s Orientation Sourcebook. This version is slightly different than that found in the core rulebooks as it is geared towards creating an intelligence character.

Step one is to generate the attributes. For STRength, ENDurance, INTellect, DEXterity and CHArisma you roll 3D10 and add 40. For LUCk and PSIonic Potential it’s a straight percentile roll (D100). The only racial modifiers for humans is -30 to PSI. There are also bonus points (D100/2 rounding down). Final results are STR 57, END 55, INT 68, DEX 60, CHA 53, LUC 55 and PSI 07.

There are a large number of skills generated through the next several steps. These include Step 2: pre-academy skills (what you did before you attended Star Fleet Academy). Step 3: Academy Skills (what you learned at the academy). Step 4: Intelligence Branch School. Step 5: Cadet Cruise (how many cruises did you take? What did you learn on that cruise?) Step 6: Intelligence Command School and finally post-academy experience (how many tours has your character been on?). The last step is to determine the character age.

Roger gets six skills from his days before the academy. These are generated by rolling a D10 and half are taken from the educational background and the other half come from the personal development. I selected the skills I thought Roger would have. Added his academy skills. For his branch school, I selected the Field Operations and added those skills.

For his cadet cruise, I rolled the Operations Forces Subdivision. The result of this cadet cruise was Passed assigned as Ensign (barely missed getting passed with honors). I then added his intelligence command school skills on step 6.

With the post-academy experience, Roger ended up with three tours. I rolled an 85 which resulted in Starfleet Military Operations Command which lasted for 4 years and he earned an officer efficiency report of as expected. His second tour was with the Field Operations Department/Operating Forces Sector (he was studying for Klingon) which lasted for two years and he earned an officer efficiency report of excellent. For his last tour we rolled at Technical Department for the Klingon department which lasted one year and earned an officer efficiency report of outstanding. There were some skills advancements from the post-academy experience, which I wrote down.

Roger’s final age at the end of the process is 33 and he has the rank of Lieutenant. I’m pretending that the GM is going to set us up for a Klingon mission with the Klingon Field Operations division. I looked up what his SECLAR (security clearance) would be. Along with his combat and heal rates.

Afterthoughts:

I loved the image of the starship Claymore that was seen on the covers of these books. I always wondered what the long protruding wing was below the warp engine? Is it a solar sail? Is it a special scanner? Since I’ve never been able to find out I may have to sit down and homebrew this ship for multiple systems.

I had flashbacks to all of the times I was adding to this skill and to that skill. I can understand Roger’s comment about Star Trek Adventures having streamlined all of that for the player in creation. But I love how all of the different percentages on the skills make each character unique. I forgot how small the text was in the character creation short form.

Additional Notes:

I had a few people respond in regards to the Serenity character posted yesterday. One person recalled how they had been able to break the system by having a character gaining the capability to cause massive amounts of damage in bare hand combat. Another person responded that they were more than willing to run a game if I could get a group together. I’ll have to ask around to see if anyone is interested.

Coming Up Next:

Against the Darkmaster

This article is open for discussion on the TardisCaptain dot Com Discord server. You can also email me at Carl (at) TardisCaptain.com with any comments.

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