Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Dimensional Gauntlet Jam #1 - Rocket Zone

The following is an example of a Dimensional Gauntlet.

Name: Rocket Zone
Entrance: Chest
Dimensional Effects: Zero Gravity, Thematic Warping: Racing
Effect:  This vaccum sealed chest opens up a space like world where several one man rockets are tethered at the starting asteroid.  The adventurers must race against the nether racers, the team dressed in black to win.

Rocket Race
Trigger Points:
•  When you start the Race
DC: 22  (CR 12).
Complexity: Difficult (4 successes, 2 failures)
Base skill: Athletics (to use your natural athletics to “cut a corner”, Use Vehicle (for the getaway).
Secondary Skills (+5 to DC): Gunplay
Success: You get the CR 12 equivalent of medium treasure (9,000 GB) from the experience.  You also get to roll on the Macguffin Treasure (See Rifts book of Adventure) to setup a future story hook.
Failure:
•  Losers get nothing.

Retry: No

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Ecology Experience #1 – The Metal Mushroom Patch



Coordinates: 54° 6' 59.32" N 111° 55' 13.08" W

Hidey ho!

Stumpy MacGee bringing you, the viewers, the wild and wacky world around us.

Today we’re going to talk about the Metal Mushroom Forest.



Where did it come from?


A long time ago, in a bizarre time known as the “nineties”, a symbol of the pokey town of Vilna was created.  A trio of metal mushrooms were constructed to act as a symbol of the excellent mushroom picking in the area.  The original were 20 feet high and 18, 000 lbs. and were little more than an amusement until the times of revelations occurred.

The Time of Revelations somehow brought life to these large metal statues.  They are now techno-organic in nature and have spread beyond the original 3.  In fact this part of Alberta has become a “metal Mushroom patch” that has created its own ecology that is separate from the crystal forests to the north.

How Big is it?


The area covers the former Smokey lake county in Alberta.  It seems to not like crossing rivers and other body of waters and it contains this most unusual fungus.  Still, it has started to spread in a North West direction.

How do Metal Mushrooms Grow?


Like their organic counterpart, the metal mushrooms main body is actually a fruit, abet one that is completely inedible to organics. It has a set of root like structure under the earth that is known as a Mycelium that has the consistency of fiber optic cables.

The Mushrooms have this tendency to pop up within the area and “bloom” for days at a time before “popping” in a spray of metal dust.  This is very toxic to most and it makes it difficult for most life to live within the area.

Overall Properties


The area is contaminated (see Book of Adventure – Contaminants for details).  

Despite this, it is considered a fairly high grade of iron that can be harvested when in bloom.  They also generate a truffle like structure that is often pure ore.  This ore can be used as the physical component for golem creation.

Some Metal Mushrooms grow into a Metal Mushroom Circle that acts as a conduit for magical energy.

Metal Mushroom Circle:
Place of Power: Minor
Special Usage: The caster gains +2 Ritual skill checks to cast spells with an earth, earth or metal component.
Other Rules: You must be standing in the center of the Metal Mushroom Circle to get the effect.

Local Flora and Fauna


While mostly barren, it does have a few localized critters that seem to live in harmony with these bulbous giants:

Golems: Metal Golems spontaneous seem to bud off the Metal Mushrooms.  They seem to be ownerless and target most targets as unfriendly.

Ooze-Dread Tar:  This ooze seems to feed off the metal reserves, leaving a sticky tar that can be used as bio-fuel.

Megamoose:  These aberrations of an animal seem to consider the metal mushrooms a giant salt lick.  It has minimal side effects and even acts to “clean up” the soil.

Porcines:  the Terminator pigs seem to like wandering through the Metal Mushrooms and use them as back scratchers.

Who Lives there?


Trolls:  A family of Trolls have setup a mushroom mill and harvests the mushrooms for export.  While gruff, they can act as a waystation for Travelers if they take a liking to you.

Why would you go there?


·         This place is a focal point for the earth.
·         The material makes good base material for golems.

The Scenario 


One of the kids at the troll settlement has disappeared and is believed to have wandered into the metal mushroom forest:

Potential twists:
·         The kid has been kidnapped by a group of gremlin’s in the forest and are making the kid one of their own.
·         The kid has been playing the entire time with a golem and it has become his “friend.” The kid and golem will take offense in separating the two.
·         The kid has fallen down into a hole and can’t get out.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Today is free RPG Day

http://www.freerpgday.com/

Just a Friendly reminder to let everybody know that all four books of Dark Revelations is currently free for all.

Download and enjoy. :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Book of Arrogance - Sneak Peaks





Jason Says…
Coming soon (July 2015 to celebrate my birthday on July 16th) is our “Book of Arrogance, It’s all in your head.”  It’s one of the things I’m most proud of we’ve done so far.   So here’s what you will find inside.

·       The all new Psychic Class, with new rules for psychic powers that is completely different than those for standard d20 3.5 SRD/OGL, yet familiar enough to play with ease. 
·       In this new Psychic Class, you will get 4 new paths.  The Eruptor, master of elemental damage and going a bit crazy when out of power.  The Mentalist, your classic mind controller that can rip minds asunder.  The Psycho-Warrior, a melee and front line psychic fighter and true weapons specialist.   And, The Rocker! Who needs magical bards? We got psychic rock and rollers. 
·       Use familiar psychic power tropes like empathy, pyrokinesis or telepathy, or fire laser beams of death using Photokinesis.  Plus many new powers in organized power sets. 
·       New and crazy races.  You’ll find nothing ordinary here as we let you play from level 1 as Dragons and Cats…yes intelligent house cats.   Also Minotaurs. Not as cursed creatures, but heroic hair metal rockers from a far off dimension.  Plus our own creations of the Harvesters and Stumpies.  One is a master psychic from seedling, while the other is tough and bit rough around the bark.  And, yes both are plants.
·       Woowear, equipment to enhance all those new psychic powers you have.
·       Psi-tats, get some psychic tattoos to gain additional power.
·       The Sandbox of Ed-Town.  Where rock and roll, and other psychically enhanced individuals have taken over.  Meet folks like Axle Thunderpipes, the Devilish Dangerous Dr. D. and many others.

Minotaur


Minotaurs see the world in Black and White.
Background
Minotaurs have a clear view of their past, because it is also their future that has already happened.  At some point in the distant future Minotaurs will be the rulers of Minos, a labyrinthine dimension of stone straddling between the Real World and the Hallowed World.  And yet, it will never exist.  Minos, some ten thousand years from now, was or will be destroyed by the echo of the Revelations rippling through time-space.  Not only was the dimension destroyed, parts of it where flung to the far reaches of the universe and across time with Minotaurs in tow. 
Most Minotaurs completely accept the ancient Greek tales of a man-bull creature roaming a maze, cursed by the gods, and defeated by a hero.  They even accept that the Greeks stole their name and put into their own language.  Though, the Minotaur’s version is slightly different.  It tells of a lost band member flung backwards in time on a fragment of Minos.  His sad fate can be seen in the incomplete myth told by an archaistic society that mistakenly hunted him as a monster, when in fact he was only a victim of circumstance.
                Minotaur history has numerous similar paradoxes to it, known as Quistory, or quantum history.  The most stable version of recent events has Minotaurs finding their way to Hallowed World’s Asteroid Belt in the past just after the revelations (or far distant future depending on your perspective) after the destruction of their home.  There they were trapped in a horrible dark realm, their music suppressed by evil forces.  Until they were able fight their way to back to our present and their new future. 
                If you are confused, take the advice of that many Minotaurs give their roadies “don’t worry about, listen to some music, it’ll make everything better.” 

Society
From a Minotaur’s point of view, it’s a sad fact that the myths about them have misplaced their most celebrated attribute.  Music.  Their former home Minos was filled with music.  Wars where fought not on battlefields but on stages and musical instruments were sacred relics.  Trying to recapture this lost society in a world filled with enemies and allies who are a little tone deaf has been pretty hard on your average Minotaur.
                Minotaurs often form in clan-like groups they call bands.  Each band is led by a “Chief” often with a primary title based on the type of music the clan plays, so most are “Metal Chiefs” because of the Minotaur’s nearly universal love for all things hair metal.  Minotaurs do not have a centralized society as such.  Each band roams their territory making their home on the road in vans, buses, and of course on their bikes.  Bands also may “go on tour” where they raid far from their home territory for supplies. 
Unlike your average motorcycle gang, Minotaur bands have the innate need to do concerts, so raiding can become surreal mix of guns and guitars being set upon a targeted town.  But, the best bands don’t even need to raid.  They can often get paid for saving a town from some bad promo they happen to come across, all the while playing their songs.

Relations
Just because they are clan-like, doesn’t mean they are insular or xenophobic.  Quite the opposite, they are friendly and nonjudgmental to anyone meet…as long as they are not haters.  Since Minotaur populations are small and spread out, they are always seeking new band members and anyone is considered for auditions.  Dwarves and Humans are often auditioned as backup members, while Half-Orc and Elves may take second lead.  Cats are one of the few creatures allowed to first lead and even occasionally chief of a band.  Dragons are relegated to stagehands, bouncers, mascots, or better yet pyrotechnicians.

Adventuring
While a significant number of Minotaurs roam around the Great Lakes, they can be found almost everywhere, even parts of the Hallowed World.  The largest gathering of Minotaurs is in Ed-Town where music dominates the landscape.  Minotaurs from far and wide travel to this city for a chance to recapture some of the glory of days long past and to forget about their problems.   For Minotaurs there is one equation in life that truly makes sense: 

Road + Music + Band+ Fans = The Life.

Recommended Class/Path  
Minotaurs claim to be the founders the fine art of rock, so being Psychic/Rockers is a sure thing.  Many Minotaurs become Combatant/Brutes to serve as bouncers for the Band.

Personality
Did we mention Minotaurs like music?  They fulfill the varied lives of rock stars, with complete conscious decision of what they are.  They can be hard ass warrior poets, live fast-die hard burnouts, or introspective musicians looking for a muse. The only no go zone for Minotaurs is becoming snobbish pampered celebrities.  It fine to be confident in your skills and loved by fans, even earning some cash is good.  But to act like a jerk to your fans is just a no promo. 

Description
Most Minotaurs could best be described as hulking.   While mostly humanoid, they are known for having a bovine features, with the most well-known one being their head, complete with horns.  However other features include a cow-like tail and cloven hooves.  A light hair covers their entire body and comes in the full range of colors that you would expect from cattle and other bovines, with the most common being browns and reds.  This often grows into manes along the head and neck.  Their appearance is usually enhanced by furs, trophies and sharpening of the horns.  They are also big on tattoos.  Though these tats are more like branding than what a human would think of as tattooing.  That leaves one thing missing, the hair.  While their manes can be quite long, they will never reach the lengths required for head banging.  Thus, many Minotaurs have taken to wearing wigs for this purpose.
 
Height:  5’5” +5d6 inches
Weight:  150 lbs., +Height Mod x5 in lbs.
Age:  Starting 12 +1d6 years (+1d4 years for spell casters).  Middle Age:  40 years; Old: 80 years; Venerable: 100 years; Max Age 120 years +2d10 years. 

Minotaur Features

·         Creature Type:  Monstrous Humanoid (for the purposes of targeting). 
·         Template: They may take templates
·         Racial talent tree access: Growth, Savage and Stout (DRev Player’s Guide)
·         Ability Score Adjustments: Strength +2
·         Languages:  Trade Tongue and one of choice
·         Vision: Darkvision 60 feet
·         Base land speed: 30 feet
·         Size:  Medium
·         Horns (Ex): 1d6 (piercing), 20/x2, natural weapons (See DRev Player’s Guide Racial talents for rules).
·         Minotaur Heritage:  Gain a total of one additional racial talent from the Growth, Savage or Stout racial talent trees they are qualified to take.
·         Ballad of Skill (Su):  All Minotaurs gain the Rocker’s Ballad of Skill talent as a free talent they may use within the rules of that power even if they are not Rockers.  If the Minotaur becomes a Rocker they do not have to take this talent again and may use it for all class prerequisites.
·         Minotaur Navigation (Ex): You gain a +2 bonus to any skill check (typically Survival or Use Vehicle) to avoid getting lost or finding your way around.  You may also apply this bonus to saves against powers or attacks that dimensional shift or teleport you against your will (including escaping from the Maze spell). 
·         Limit, Non-human parts:  Minotaurs cannot wear head slot, eye slot or boot slot items unless designed for them.  This doubles the normal base price of it, if it is a mundane item. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Relic Roadshow #4 – Lac St. Anne



Coordinates          53°42′30″N 114°27′37″W
Alternative names: Manitou Sakhahigan (Cree), Wakamne (Nakota Sioux)
Note: this is a work of fiction only loosely based on the local belief system.  No disrespect is intended.

History


There are many myths associated with this lake: Ancient tales tell of a large monster that lived in the lake, and as it moved it would create dangerous and unpredictable currents, which could easily capsize a canoe or boat.

There was also a tale of a missionary that was set-up in honour of the ancient Catholic Saint Anne.

Before the Times of Revelations, it was a common pilgrimage site in the middle of summer. 

Times after Revelations


When the Times of Revelations occurred, the lake surged with energy, decimating what little population lived around this sacred place.  For generations it laid abandoned and known as a “spooky” lake.

The first creatures to come back were the menagerie of birds.   They flocked and began to feed on the various critters that had erupted and made it their home.    The high magical environment must have had an effect as the bird population that surrounds the lake only got larger in both size and scale.

A side effect of the massive bird population was the generation of blue green algae that cakes the lake.  While the lake was historically known for healing properties, it was also known for diseases that were generated by environmental and avian waste.  In the Time of Revelations this contrast has only gotten worse.

Finally, a Damnation Eater has moved into lake proper.  Dubbed “Bob” by those few locals, it feeds off the waste of the creatures in the area.  It also acts as guardian for the lake.  There is a reoccurring legend that says "Bob" was originally human, but fell into the lake and mutated.

While the sentient population of the area is fairly sparse, Gnomes has taken up settlement along the side of the lake.  While they prefer baseball caps over pointy hats, they consider themselves intermediaries between Bob and the rest of the world and take exception to those whom would attempt to talk to Bob directly. They also have become quite adept at domesticating the many large birds that congregate along the lake.

Overall Properties


Lac St. Anne is a perfect example of a Magical lake.  Most of the magical locations are on the shoreline and are quarantined off by the Gnomes for their own purposes. 

Magical Effects:


Place of Power: Major
Special Usage: The caster gains +2 Ritual skill checks to cast all Conjuration spells and +2 Ritual Skill checks to cast to Divination spells, and +1 to spell penetration to these spells (vs. Spell Resistance).
Other Rules: The bonus applies to the place and not the water. Typically only applies to certain
segments or areas of the waterway, though great waterfalls almost always have significance due to their rarity. Along rivers it may be a "haunted" shore or enchanted curve or bend, perhaps a delta, or even where the river begins. For lakes, the lake must be significant in size (such as the great lakes) or have a long standing myth associated within.

The water itself is suitable for a component for magical potions, but must be processed correctly.  While the waters will make the potion one level higher, the ritual check is at +5 DC to make the potion.  If it fails, the potion will instead give the drinker the Poo Flu (See the Book of Danger for more details),

The Scenario:  

The Local Gnomes are on the warpath.  The party is hired to find out why?

Potential Twists:
·         “Bob” has commanded them to take their rightful place as rulers of the earth.
·         A local Tribe of Gremlin’s raided their village.  They are preparing to attack in retaliation as only Gnomes can.
·         It is not a war party, but a humanitarian effort.  They are getting ready to bring somebody who’s horribly sick to Ed town so they can get proper medical treatment.
·         It’s not the Gnomes that are on the warpath: it’s the birds.  Something has seriously angered them and they have taken to flight in a manner that would make Alfred Hitchcock proud.  The Gnomes are trying to reel them in before they cause too much damage.

Common Monsters to use: Afflictions (Poo Flu), Birds (larger species - some with the megafauna template), Damnation Eater, Gremlins, Mooks (Bombardier, Boogieman)  



Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Return of the Spell Slot?



Jason Says…

When we first started on the spell system for DRev, we had decided early on that we wanted to do spell points, with the idea that 1) it would be easier for players to keep track of and 2) it would work better from a metrics point of view.  

Some game testing showed it worked pretty well, with one little hiccup.  It becomes pretty easy to spam lower level spells, a lot.  While certainly with my level 10 Magister I would never imagine of casting ray of frost 80 times a day, the notion of casting magic missile 26 times did cross my mind. 

The easy way to address this as a player was to come up with my own mental math of leaving enough points in reserve to cast 4th level and 5h level spells for later.  But the exercise did show that perhaps the return of traditional d20 spell slots as an optional rule was worth looking at.

Spell Slots
These can represent the ability to gather and assess components or knowledge, store key spell completion phrases or rituals in your mind, or ability to attune yourself with the mystic energies of the universe.  In reality the number of spells known to your character represents how many you have actually memorized, and your Ritual skill represents how good you are at casting or bringing them into reality.

DRev, we will always allow spontaneous casting.  In other words, you will not have to state at the start of the day of what spells you want to memorize for use.  You simply state which spell from your personal spell list you want to cast, and expend the appropriate spell slot to use it (see below). 

Number of Spell Slots
Casters in DRev will start off with a number of spell slots exactly equal to the number of spells known to them based on their class.   So without reprinting the entire chart, here are a couple of examples.

At level 2, the Channeler would have 3 spell slots for level-0 spells, and 2 spell slots for level-1 spells.
At level 2, the Ritualist would have 5 spell slots for level-0 spells, and 3 spell slots for level-1 spells.

The slots act as a set number of daily uses for spells of particular spell level.   Once you have expended all the spell slots from a spell level, you may not cast any other spells from that level.

The Ritualist class will gain a total number of slots equal to their normal spell known, plus their known utility spells (thus 3+2u becomes 5 slots).   If the GM thinks that utility spells should be counted as separate spell slots they could ask players to do so.

Spell Slot Recovery
This will follow the normal rules of recovery spell points.  Spell slots will be recovered if you are able to take a daily full rest (typically 8 hours), and not be suffering from severe environmental conditions, starvation, thirst and not considered fatigued once the rest is over. 

Ritual casting
The ritual rules remained unchanged.  You must make Ritual skill check to cast any spell from your personal spell list.  If your Ritual roll is a critical (typically natural 20) success, than you do not use up the spell slot you were about to expend.  See spell mishaps below for rolling a 1.  A failed Ritual check will mean the spell slot is expended, and the spell also does not go off.

Cantrips/Level-0 Spells
Due to their weaker nature, your Ritual skill’s critical threat range is increased by 1 point when casting level-0 spells (20 becomes 19-20), to a maximum threat of 15-20. 


Spell Mishaps
When you have to consult the spell mishap table, here are some mishap changes with spell slots.
Roll of 18:  Spell Nerf: The Spell Fails and costs 1d4 extra spell slots.  The caster may choose which spell level to expend these slots from.  The caster Ritual skill is at -2 and spell power (save DC) for all spells is at -2 for 24 hours.
Roll of 19: Mana Drain: The Spell Fails.  The spellcaster is drained of all spell slots except for 1d2 spell slots. The caster may choose which spell levels these slots are remaining, up to their normal maximum number of slots.

Meta-Magic Feats
This will force you to have and to use the appropriate higher spell slot.  So,  Component Management is at +1 spell level, so a level-1 spell with this meta-magic feat must be cast with a level-2 spell slot. 

Talents and Feats notes
A feature that adds spells to your personal spell list does not add to how many spell slots you have.
A feature that adds, expends or restores spells points will typically count for 1 spell slot for every 3 spell points it would normal expend or grant.  Any fractions are rounded down.  

Floating Spell Slot
Some benefits may give you a floating spell slot.  A floating spell slot can be used in place of any spell slot normally available to you.  It otherwise acts as a normal daily spell slot for expenditure and recovery.

All of the following are from DRev Book of Magic

Feat details
Extra Spell Points [Ritual], Feat: This feat now grants you 1 floating spell slot that you may use in place of spell slots normally available to you.  New:  Under the spell slot system, this feat can only be taken up to 3 times total.

Channeler Class details
Divine Trade Off (Channeler general Talent):  Benefit: once per day, spend 1 channeling point to restore the daily use of 1 spell slot you have already used. 

Faustian Mechanics details
Ritual casting is at +4 DC to cast spells right from their personal spell list, but do not consume extra spell slots (this mechanic did not work well with slots). their talent Channel Spells Through Mechanics will negate this penalty.

Ritualists Class details
Arcane Gift (Ritualist general Talent):  This talent gives a +2 to Ritual skill rolls (unchanged), and 1 floating spell slot that you may use in place of spell slots normally available to you.  This talent can only be taken once.

Blood Magic  (Ritualist general Talent):  New: For this benefit You must spend 3 hit points for each spell level you wish to restore a spell slot to.  So if you want to restore the daily use of a level-2 spell slot, you must spend 6 hit points.  You may not recover spell slots above your normal maximum.  This talent has its normal daily maximum usage.
New: Level-0 spell slots cost 1 hit point each to restore. 

Suffer For Your Craft (Ritualist general Talent):  You must spend hit point equal to spell slot level x 3 to trigger this talent (a level 5 spell slot would cost 15 hit points).

Magister details
Manna Tapping (Su), talent:  This is still a once per day effect.  All New effect:  When you activate this power, you gain a Manna Tapping Pool equal to half your level (rounded down, minimum 1).  When you want to cast as spell, you may draw from this pool in this way to cast the spell without using a spell slot.  Expend points from the Manna Tapping pool equal to the spell level you are casting, and make your ritual casting roll normal.  Once out of points this talents power ends.  The pool only lasts for 1 hour before fading useless.  Level-0 spells cannot benefit from this talent.   For example, you are level 10 (manna tapping pool 5), and cast a level 4 spell using the pool, this leaves 1 point left in the pool.

Manna Theft (talent):  Effect remains unchanged, except instead of recovering 1d6 spell points, you now recover 1d2 spells slots of choice that you have used so far this day, up to that spell levels normal maximum. 


Items

Talisman of Karma (TIER magical item, Fetish):  Instead of spell points or floating spell slots, the talisman grants you the ability to restore daily use of a single spell slot you have up to specific spell-level.   Take the TIER-1 (minus one) to determine the maximum spell-level slot you can restore. Thus a TIER 1 fetish can restore one level-0 spell slot, while the TIER 3 fetish could restore one spell slot to either the level-0, 1, or 2 spell slot.  You still may only wear one these at a time, but it may be used as a free action.  It cannot restore any floating spell slots you may have.