Thursday, April 22, 2021

Papers & Paychecks!

3rd-level Fashion Model
Stress: 9, Poise: 16

We daydream about the apocalypse.

We fantasize about danger.

We pretend we could take it.

But in a crazy world that seems to be on the verge of catastrophe every single day, eventually the shit will hit the fan and those of us that remain may find ourselves longing for less adventure as we relax to a nice ol' game of...

Papers & Paychecks!*

Yes, a game where you play as a 3rd-level Engineer, a 1st-level Plummer, a 4th-level Lawyer, a 5th-level Accountant, a 6th-level Nurse...

  • Hit Points are called Stress. You would lose Stress by failing rolls. Reaching 0 Stress might result in a nervous breakdown or some such thing that causes you to retreat from society.
  • Narcotics temporarily restore Stress at the risk of addiction and/or death.
    • Armor Class is called Poise, perhaps affected by your level and fashion accessories.
    • Dungeons would be events -- parties, weddings, conventions, disasters, vacations, etc. They might be a flow-chart, a point-crawl, or randomly rolled occurrences (challenges) interrupted by periodic preordained incidents. Longer, more stressful events would have a fixed number of minimum challenges.
    • Saving Throws might be:
      • Disease
      • Toxins
      • Injury
      • Depression
      • Lust
      • Peer Pressure
    • Getting fired from your job might result in negative levels, much like energy-drain, or at least pause your advancement.
    • Getting arrested might cause a mandatory dip into the Criminal class. 
    • Failed rolls in prison or war cause twice as much Stress.
    • Marriage, divorce, and children would be things that happen to you along the way that have both pros and cons that assist or hurt you with this roll or that.
    • Character Sheets would definitely look like job applications or tax forms.
    • Aging would come with both boons and banes.

    So, after a long day of scavenging for food and dodging what few bullets remain, cozy up to that warm fire in that make-shift shelter with a few of your surviving pals. Grab those strange looking dice you found in that burned-out town (who knows how those unused notebooks and pencils survived!) Roll up some career-folk and see if you can handle the day-to-day angst and stress of normal life in...

    Papers & Paychecks!*

    Almost sounds fun.

    *See pg. 111 of the AD&D Dungeon Masters Guide for inspiration.

    Friday, April 9, 2021

    RIFTS: Dial O For Operator

    Still working away at something, but can't neglect the blog, so...

    RIFTS Operators...

    I wonder how many people have played an Operator?

    They're basically just mechanics. Regular folks good at fixing stuff. They'll die in M.D.C. combat immediately. And they won't last terribly long in S.D.C. combat either. Unless you gear them up in either case. Which kind of makes sense, because gear is what they do.

    They should almost be a necessity for any RIFTS group, just like the thief is (or should be) a necessity for any group of dungeon-crawlers.

    You see, if you don't know, JUNK is all over RIFTS earth. Old junk, new junk, alien junk, all kinds of junk. In fact, if any setting needs a plethora upon plethora of random tables for what you find in this ruined town or that battlefield, it's RIFTS.

    A good GM should be littering broken, but potentially useful items (weapons, vehicles, armor, etc.) of all sizes all over the place...specifically for the Operator to shine. Not everything will get fixed (or fixed in time) some rolls will fail, but the Operator will always be busy and could become a cherished member of the group.

    Imagine they find some ungodly cool thing that's going to take awhile to fix, but it's in a dangerous place with lots of random encounters. How many fights are the PCs willing to risk while the Operator tinkers with this thing? (The Operator get's to fight too of course.)

    The younger me wouldn't have looked twice at this class, but now (especially after I drew that pic) I'm digging it.

    BTW, Palladium has been printing hard-covers of their rulebooks and they have a special hard-cover reprinting of RIFTS 1st Edition coming very soon. I've preordered one. That iconic Splugorth Slave Barge cover by Keith Parkinson....damn, if that doesn't fire up your imagination...

    Back to writing.

    And drawing.

    You Can't Play As Conan, But... can play as one of his companions. Conan has plot armor. He can't die. He won't die. Ever. Unless Howard willed it, in which ...