Saturday, August 27, 2022

OSR: Zodiac-themed Magic Items

This is a very silly post, inspired by Lumpy Touch's Gorefield series.  I apologize for nothing. 

by Sergey Kandakov
Aries' Dreamcatcher:

A dreamcatcher strung with glittering thread and hung with bone charms, carved with elaborate scrimshaw designs.  The bones come from a variety of species, including whales, deers, tigers and humans.

Abilities:
- The owner of the dreamcatcher cannot be pulled into the Spirit World while they sleep, nor can anyone enter their dreams
- They always have good dreams and restful sleep
- They will only need to sleep half as long as normal- so if they need 8 hours of sleep normally, they only need 4 for as long as they possess the dreamcatcher

Destroying Aries' Dreamcatcher:


Unstring the thread and burn it.  Melt down the ring and make it into something else.  Bury the bone charms in separate graves.

If not destroyed in this way, anyone who attempts to destroy the dreamcatcher must save.  On a failed save, they suffer all the nightmares the dreamcatcher caught, suffering horrible nightmares for 1d20+X days, where X is the number of months the last owner held the dreamcatcher.  On a successful save, the person who damaged the dreamcatcher instead falls into an enchanted sleep that lasts for 1d20 days or until dispelled. 

Afterward, the dreamcatcher will disappear and reappear in 1d6 weeks, usually in an area that no one has investigated in a while, such as inside an overcrowded drawer, a box of knick-knacks or on a dusty, rarely used shelf in someone's home.

Taurus' Bookmark:

A holographic bookmark like the kind you might see at an Elementary School bookfair.  It shows a mountain climber hanging from a cliff by one hand with the sub-title: Reading Rocks!  If you move the bookmark, you can see the climber grabbing on with his other hand, or dangling from one.  It seems flimsy, but will never discolor or suffer any superficial damage.

Abilities:
- If tucked into a book, the owner can instantly access any piece of information in the book as if they memorized the book.
- After 3 days of being stored in the book, the owner can memorize the book's contents and store it in one of their Memory Slots.

Destroying Taurus' Bookmark:     

Create a blank book and place the bookmark inside it.  Leave it there for a year and a day.  Afterward, the bookmark will have lost it's magic and will be blank and powerless. 

If not destroyed in this way, the bookmark will retaliate against any attempt to destroy it by filling the destroyer's head with the knowledge of every book it has ever been inside of.  That person must save.  On a failed save, that person is rendered catatonic as an incomprehensible amount of information pours into their mind.  The only way to cure this condition is to erase their memory and wipe their mind clean. 

On a successful save, the person instead loses all knowledge of any spoken language and learns an equivalent number of languages.  These languages will always be foreign languages not widely spoken nearby or by companions, extremely obscure or dead languages.

The bookmark will then disappear and reappear inside a random book in the nearest large collection of books, such as a library or personal collection.

Gemini's Copycat:

A small statue of a pair of identical white cats with black around their paws and on the tips of their tails.  The statues are ceramic and sit on the same base.  Their overall size is about that of an ash tray.  The ceramic is highly resistant to cracking.  Dropping it or any accidental damage will cause it to crack and scatter ceramic dust, but this damage will disappear when not being directly observed, and will never affect the statue's overall integrity. 

Ability:
- 1/Day, the statue can create a clone of it's owner.  The clone possesses all the owner's memories and knowledge, but none of their possessions.  This does mean the clone will appear naked.  The clone will obey the owner of the statue without question but otherwise has a personality identical to that of the owner.  The clone wants what is best (based on the owner's belief) for the owner of the statue.  The clone can act independently as well, and if not given orders, will do what it feels the owner would most want it to do.  The clone has 1d8+X HP, where X is the owner's CON modifier.  The clone will only exist for 24 hours or until destroyed.  The owner can also dismiss the clone at any time.  Only one clone can exist at a time. 

Destroying Gemini's Copycat:

The statue must be left in the house of an old woman who will take care of it for at least a year.  Then it must be given to a group of at least 2 small children.  The statue will only lose it's invulnerability to damage if the children are not ordered to destroy it.  If they break it, it must be accidentally.

Any other attempt to break the statue will fail, and will scatter ceramic dust on the person attempting to break it.  This will make cats of all kinds, including big cats and magical cats, hate them until they apologize to the statue by bathing it in milk.            

Cancer's Golden Claw:

A crab claw with a shell that is the color of red gold and white marble.  Brilliant and shiny.  No matter how you clean it, it reeks of salt and fish.  

Ability:
- Each day, the crab claw will make you an expert at one random skill, lending +4 to any roll made involving that skill.
- You always know what skill it is. 
- 1/Day, you may 'reroll' the random skill for the day.  This will select a new random skill. 

Destroying Cancer's Golden Claw:

Bathe the Claw in blood and feed it to something that eats crabs- such as an octopus.  The more powerful or magical the creature, the better. 

Feeding the claw to anything else or any other attempt to destroy it will curse you to have all the water that passes your lips turn to saltwater.  This curse can only be broken by chopping off a bodypart and feeding it to a crab.  After this, Cancer's Golden Claw will disappear and reappear in the house of a fisherman or someone who regularly works or interacts with the sea in a place they don't regularly check.   

Alternatively, you can throw the Claw and demand a refund or to exchange it for something else.  If you do this with a sufficiently tasty sacrifice, there is a chance that the King of Crabs hears you and honors your request.  There is a 4-in-6 chance he gives you a large pile of edible seafood in exchange, with a 2-in-6 chance he gives you another nautical or piscine themed magic item.

by Norbert Lösche

Leo's Wake-Up Worms:

A tin can like that which would contain sardines, marked with a cartoon, anthropomorphic lion dressed in a black suit that resembles one that would have been fashionable circa 1880.  The lion has a spade and stands next to an open grave.  The can also has a label that reads "Uncle Leo's Wake-Up Worms".  There are additional labels describing the contents of the can as well as instructions on how to use it. 

Ability:

- You can open the can to release a large, pale worm.  The worm will seek to escape from the can and seek out the nearest corpse, which it will burrow inside of.  This will reanimate the corpse as an Undead with the original personality, goal and ambitions of the person it once belonged to.  The Undead will slowly decay as well, degrading until it is no longer a suitable living space for the worm.  After it reaches this state, the worm will exit the body and seek out another one.  This causes the Undead to de-animate and "die".   
- If the worm is destroyed, no new Undead can be created.  The worm has the intelligence of a worm and is only motivated by above behaviors.

Destroying Leo's Wake-Up Worms:

The worm is no stronger than a normal worm.  A boot will do just fine. 

Uncle Leo's accepts no liability for loss of worms.  All risks and damages are the responsibility of the owner upon point of acquisition.

Virgo's Lovebeads:

A necklace of tie-dye beads like the kind you might find at Mardi Gras or in a commune focused on alternative spirituality.  Cannot be torn or damaged.  Smells vaguely of some sort of masculine musk or feminine perfume (depending on what you are attracted to). 

Abilities:
- While wearing the beads, all creatures will perceive you as more attractive and charming.  You gain a CHA of 16(+2) or if it is already 16, you get a +1 to CHA.
- 3/Day, you can turn invisible while wearing the beads.  However, the invisibility only affects you and the beads.  All other equipment will remain visible.  You can remain invisible for up to 10 minutes at a time or until you take an action to harm someone, interfere with something that doesn't belong to you or otherwise undertake a strenuous action. 
- 3/Day, you can turn intangible and gain the ability to fly for up to 1 minute.  While intangible, you can pass through physical objects like they aren't there, though you can touch solid objects as normal.  Non-magical weapons cannot hurt you.  You can end this effect early as a free action.  Note that this intangibility only affects your body and the lovebeads, all other items will fall off you, as you cannot touch them.

Curse:

While wearing these lovebeads or carrying them in your possession, there is a 1-in-10% chance whenever you meet a new NPC or go to a new location that someone will fall head-over-heels in love with you.  This person will become a passionate lover to you, doing whatever they feel will make you happy.  But if you mistreat them, fail to respond to their affections or are seen with anyone who could be a love rival, they will rapidly become an obsessive stalker and begin trying to hurt you for spurning their love.  They may even try to kill you as an act of dramatic revenge. 

These individuals can always see you when you are invisible and touch you when you are intangible, though any non-magical items they carry will still pass through you in your intangible form. 

This curse can only be broken by throwing the beads at a topless woman and then kissing her in front of all your obsessed stalkers.  If you do that, they will realize their love for you was all the result of magic.  They might still be mad at you, but they aren't obsessed with murdering you.

Destroying Virgo's Lovebeads:

You can't.  Love conquers all, baby!  That being said, the lovebeads can be contained by sealing them in a silver-lined box and giving them to someone who has taken an oath of celibacy.  This can contain the beads for as long as the box remains sealed. 

The longest this has ever been is 1 year.

Libra's Scales of Virtue:

A set of old-fashioned scales, made of gold, iron and heavy brass.  One side is tarnished, the other gleaming gold.  The tarnished side will never be improved no matter how much it is cleaned or polished, while the gleaming side cannot be soiled or dirtied.

Abilities:
- Each day, the Scales will measure your Good and Bad Deeds based on the last 24 hours. 
- If you have done more Good than Evil, increase all your ability scores by +2 (max 18).  If a stat is already 18, you instead gain +2 HP.  This also increases your maximum HP by as much.  These bonuses only last until the next judgement.
- If you have done more Evil than Good deeds, decrease all ability scores by 1 (min 3).  However, you gain the ability to 3/Day, transform your body into shadow for 1 minute.  While in shadow form, you can pass into and out of any space could, and can only be held back by things that could stop a shadow (such as bright light).  Only magic and sunlight can hurt you in shadow form.  When you transform into shadow, all equipment you are carrying transforms with you.  You can change back early as a free action. 
- If your Good and Evil deeds are balanced, you cannot heal or recover HP in any way until the next judgement. 

Destroying Libra's Scales of Virtue:

The owner of the scale must receive the Neutral Judgement 7 days in a row.  On the seventh day, the scale's metal will become vulnerable to them.  After that, anything wielded by their hands that could damage metal can destroy the scales. 

As the scales are aware of this, for each day past the first that the owner of the scales gets the Neutral Judgement, the scale will lure Good and Evil creatures to it's location.  Both will want to claim the scale and depending on the party's own reputation and moral fiber, will use appropriate tactics to try and gain ownership of the scale. 

Any other attempt to destroy the scale will result in injuring oneself in a spectacular workplace injury, such as slipping with a grinder and driving it into your own hand or a nearby person's stomach. 

Scorpio's Sleepmask:


A velvet sleepmask that is impossibly soft and very comfortable.  It's front is covered in a stylized scorpion made of stars on an ink-black sky.

Ability:
- Each night when worn, the sleepmask will give you a vision of the future.  This vision will reveal some of the events that will occur within the near future.  For example, if you are investigating a serial killer, the vision might reveal who his next potential victim will be. 
- However, the sleepmask also has a chance of giving you a vision of your own death.  This chance is 2-in-10, but increases by 1 each time you receive a vision of your own death.  Roll on the table below to see what vision of your own death you receive. 
- If you receive the same vision of your death 3 times, you are cursed to die in that way.

The only way to break this curse is to go to a place where the curse could be fulfilled, but then endanger yourself in another way. 

For example, if you are cursed to burn to death, set your house on fire, then chain yourself to a cinderblock and jump into the pool with it. 

How will you die, according to this vision?

1d10
1- Shot to death
2- Stabbed
3- Crushed by a heavy object
4- Burned alive
5- Run over by a car or vehicle
6- Attacked by an animal
7- Drowning
8- Buried alive
9- Poisoned
10- Blown up.

Destroying Scorpio's Sleepmask:

Give it to an insomniac and have him wear it for three days.  Then, burn it.

Any other method will simply cause the Sleepmask to disappear when you're not looking and to be cursed with horrible nightmares of your own death.  

Sagittarius's Silver Coins:

A bag of thirty heavy, silver coins that clearly come from some archaic culture.  The coins are each marked with a different mythological beast and the bust of someone politically or historically important from history. 

Ability:
- Each coin can be used to purchase any Good or Service.  This consumes the Coin, causing it to transform into an equivalent amount of currency once handed over. 
- However, one coin is cursed.  After using it, all other coins will immediately disappear. 

Destroying Sagittarius's Silver Coins:

Melt the coins down into raw silver and then make them into something.  Then sell that item to someone for an insignificant price. 

Any other attempt to destroy the coins will result in the coins all disappearing, being replaced with a bunch of tacky, useless or illegal items.  For example, a kiddie pool full of raspberry jam, a van powered by pain, or twenty pounds of cocaine.  The cursed coin will just disappear. 

Capricorn's Handheld Device:

An old, battered looking black cellphone with a pentagram carved into the back.  The ringtone is always on, always loud and always heavy metal.

Abilities:
- The device works as a cellphone.
- 3/Day, the owner may contact anyone with this device by saying their name while holding the device.  If they have a phone, this will contact them through it.  If they do not, it will enable a temporary telepathic connection to the owner.  Missed or ignored calls do not consume uses of this ability. 
- 1/Day, by saying a name and a date, the owner can contact someone in the past. 

Destroying Capricorn's Handheld Device:

Take it apart piece by piece and wash each piece in holy water.  Scratch out the pentagram.  Then recycle the plastic parts in different bins.  Take the metallic parts and melt them down into a crucifix. 

All other methods will result in receiving phone calls from the Midnight Men and being unable to sleep at night, for fear that they are standing right outside your window, watching you.  When you're not looking, the device will disappear and make it's way into the hands of someone you despise.   

Aquarius's Miracle Jar:

An ancient jar that looks like it should be in a museum or an exhibit on ancient greek culture, worked with strange geometric designs.  Cracked, but this does not weaken the structure. 

Ability:
- 1/Day, if filled with human blood, the jar can convert it's contents into any liquid of the owner's choice. 
- Every third time the jar is used, it produces some kind of edible liquid, such as tomato sauce, nacho cheese, hot fudge, etc.

Destroying Aquarius's Miracle Jar:

Fill the jar with blood and command it to transform the blood into an explosive liquid or water.  Then ignite the explosives and run.  If you choose water, then throw a large piece of sodium into the water and blow it to smithereens. 

Afterwards, scoop up all the pieces, grind them into dust, and pour them into a river.

All other attempts will merely cause the jar to disappear and for you to find tomato sauce in incovenient places for the rest of your life. 

Pisces' Silver Spoon:

A silver spoon, with an ornate handle that resembles a mackerel or other large fish.  The knife reeks faintly of salt.  It never gets tarnished.  At night, it vibrates in such a way that remind all who hear it of ocean waves crashing on the waves.

Ability:
- 3/Day, the spoon can recreate any food the owner has ever eaten out of water.  The food tastes identical, but has the nutritional content and calories of water.

Destroying Pisces' Silver Spoon:

Leave the spoon in a desert for 1 month, then bury it in the ground in a landlocked principality (or nation) in a location at least 50 miles from any river or large body of water.

Any other attempt to destroy the spoon will cause the spoon to disappear, while cursing the previous owner to find rotting fish hidden in all their possessions.  Eating the fish will sicken you and make you suffer dearly.

artist unknown

Ophiuchus' Rod of Earthly Glory:

A metal scepter, the length of a flute, made of iron worked with silver that takes the form of silver serpents that wind their way down the shaft of the rod.  The rod is tipped with a strange shape, resembling an inhuman face with five ruby eyes, two below a wide, curling mouth, the rest positioned in a curve above the mouth.  The rod practically vibrates with energy, tingling when not in use, but pulsating in the hands of any who command it's power.

All others, on the other hand, will see the rod as a golden scepter adorned with symbols of the local dominant religion or deity they happen to find most agreeable.  If worship a minority God or secret religion, they will find a small, unimportant symbol hidden somewhere amidst larger ornamentation which tells them that you're one of them.    

Ophiuchus' Rod of Earthly Glory has an Ego:

- It cannot be wielded except by someone with a CHA and COG of at least 13
- Any prospective wielder must possess a grand ambition as well- something spectacular and incredibly challenging

If you do not meet both of these qualifications, the Rod simply remains inert in your hands.  If you persist in using it anyway, it

Abilities:
- As a free action, by pushing one of the smaller rubies, you can cause the Rod to transform into a massive flaming sword that does 1d8+Atk+CHA damage.  The sword also does an extra 1d6 fire damage on a hit.  These flames can spread if you wish or can restrict themselves to the blade. 
- 1/Day, you can cause the Rod to emit a glorious aura of light.  This makes all creatures you consider your allies within 100' to have advantage on saves against Fear and Charm effects, as well as gain +2 to hit.  Enemies within the aura must save vs fear or become frightened of you.  They will not move closer to you unless they have no choice and take 1d4 Morale damage a round.  If this reduces a creature's Morale to 0, that creature runs away or hides or begs for mercy.  Creatures frightened by this ability will only fight if they have no choice. 
- 3/Day, by touching a creature with the Rod, you can cause them to take 2d6 necrotic damage and you to gain as much health.  This also ages the target by 1d10+2 years, while adding that many years to your natural lifespan.  You may use this ability as an action.     

Destroying Ophiuchus' Rod of Earthly Glory:

Claim everything the world has to offer- fame, wealth and power.  Stand at the top of the world, crowned in gold and glory.  Then reject your possessions and status, hand your power over to others and finally, as your last act of renunciation, snap the rod over your knee, then take the fragments and throw half into the sea in different locations, while bury the other half. 

Then pray that no damn fools attempt to find the pieces and reassemble the cursed thing.

artist unknown

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

OSR: The Book and the Rod- other types of Exorcists

This post is an unofficial part 2 to my previous post on Exorcists.

There are three types of Exorcists- Exorcists of the Book, Exorcists of the Rod and Exorcists of the Chain. 

I wrote about the last type already (see above).  But with the other two, I felt like they didn't need a whole class written about them.  These other types are more like additional class features players can choose (or not) to staple onto their characters.  As such, both are here.     

by Alexandre Chaudret
Exorcists of the Book:

These Exorcists strike pacts with mighty or Noble Spirits, offering service or other items in exchange for power.  These Exorcists are the least powerful overall, but they possess the most freedom in how they utilize their abilities. 

This is because they primarily deal with powerful Spirits, as they can offer more power, but also because these Spirits are less likely to care about the specific activities of said Exorcist.

These are often called Exorcists of the Book, or Book Exorcists, because they collect the names of spirits, as well as information on how best to summon them and what things they generally ask for.  They usually store this information in books that they hang from their belts or wear across their backs.  Sometimes they hide these books, but in some places, carrying a book like that is will make ruffians think twice about attacking such an individual, for fear of arousing a Spirit's wrath. 

Additionally, sometimes these Exorcists share this information with each other, swapping notes and the names of famous Spirits.  They never do this for free, but only when it suits them, usually in exchange for some other piece of vital information or some other form of favor. 

Mechanical Notes:

Those who make Pacts with Spirits can gain a number of special abilities that they can use either innately or X/Day, depending on the power and the pact.  The spirit acts as a patron, offering this power in exchange for service or services that are negotiated before the pact is sealed.

Here is an Example-

Chernobog, the Burning Lord

A Spirit of Desolation, Fire, Fear, Luck and Beauty, Chernobog most often appears in the mortal world as a shapeless face from the midst of a fire.  In the Spirit World, he is a towering giant constructed of ash and flames, hung with broken chains of molten gold and blazing iron, a diadem of blue flames burning in his brow.

In terms of personality, Chernobog is violent, rapacious and childlike.  It lives for destruction, to eat and consume anything it can.  It almost exclusively works with mortals who will use it's power to spread destruction and fear, as well as those willing to feed it's flames. 

Pacts it will make:

- In exchange for your soul, Chernobog will grant you the power to command fire, a beautiful appearance and a charmed life, with Fortune's gaze forever falling on you. 

- In exchange for regular human sacrifice, Chernobog will grant you the ability to absorb life from burnt offerings to heal wounds, to produce tongues of fire from your hands and the ability to never be burned by flames or touched by heat. 

- In exchange for beginning and leading a war of conquest, Chernobog will grant you the ability to invoke fear in those you choose, the right to summon his flames to strengthen yourself and those you choose and prevent you from dying unless you die by drowning, freezing to death or are impaled by a frozen spear. 

And for a lesser example...

Miyishi Three Tails


A Spirit of Nature, Mysteries and Knowledge, Miyishi is a Kitsune.  In the mortal world, she appears as a human woman with furry ears growing out of the top of her head, white hair and three fluffy tails.  She also sometimes possesses amber eyes and pointed teeth.  She clothes herself in robes of colorful silk and pins her hair up with elaborate golden jewelry.  Sometimes she will conceal her ears, but her tails always remain with her, though she can hide them under baggy clothes.  In the Spirit World she appears as an enormous doglike creature with three huge tails, her fur white as snow, her eyes the color of red gold, a rope of glowing lights strung around her throat.

In terms of personality, Miyishi is mischevous, playful and cunning.  She cares only for her own pleasures, namely excellent food, wine and being pampered and waited on.  She will also collect young men of pleasing attractiveness to entertain her, though her dalliances with them never last.  She is also fond of musicians, poets and artists, particularly if they are willing to create works that flatter her.  That being said, she is not as impulse-driven or as vain as she appears.  She also has a strong sense of justice and will often lead on those who she feels are wicked, only to abandon them and leave them to their fate.  She always finds their shocked expressions incredibly amusing. 

Pacts she will make:   
   

- In exchange for gifts of wine and tasty food, Miyishi will give you her cunning, allowing you to easily evade social manipulation and potential traps. 

- In exchange for humiliating or punishing a person Miyishi feels deserves it, she will grant you her ability to comprehend all mortal languages, spoken or written.  

- In exchange for a composition or work of art that praises and flatters her, Miyishi will grant you a tuft of her fur which will mark you as an Ally of Nature.  Beasts will not attack you, thorns will not cut you, brambles will not bar your way.  These bonuses will only last for as long as you stay in Miyishi's good graces and respect the rights of plants and animals.

from here

Exorcists of the Rod:

Also called Mediums, Exorcists of the Rod allow Spirits to possess them in exchange for power.  This grants the Spirit the ability to interact with the physical world more readily and in exchange, the Exorcist gets not only the ability to wield the power of the Spirit, but also gains their strength, which improves and strengthens the Exorcist's body. 

Rod Exorcists are called so because they pass the 'Rod' of control to another, entering into a partnership with one or more spirits.  Some of these Exorcists also carry around staves carved with their and their Spirit's names as a token of esteem and partnership, but this is generally considered tacky.

Rod Exorcists do not partner with the strongest spirits, as most bodies cannot contain them.  Instead, they partner with spirits of the middle tiers, the spirits that most would identify as 'Demons' or 'Angels'.  These spirits are generally as smart as, if not smarter than a human and are limited in the boons they can bestow.  They cannot make you King or Immortal, but they can provide many other, more flexible abilities. 

However, the downside for being a Rod Exorcist is that you must take your partner's feelings into account.  While it is possible for one soul to dominate the other, at least temporarily (a state called 'Possession'), in order to properly work as a Rod Exorcist/Medium, you will need to cooperate.  Only then will you be able to reach your full potential. 

However, this is not the only option.  Some Rod Exorcists instead choose to partner with lesser spirits, gaining a coterie of smaller followers.  This is often easier, as smaller Spirits are more abundant and more easy to bribe or bully into agreement.  But the problem is that with many Spirits come many different demands.  A Rod Exorcist with many partners will have to walk a tightrope to keep the Spirits happy, or they will leave him for someone more willing to serve their needs. 

Working with your partner(s) is more than just not dominating them, however.  While you are Hosting them, you must not use their power for anything the Spirit finds objectionable.  But all Spirits have an agenda, that is why they are even bargaining with you at all.  If you do not help them work towards this agenda, your partnership will be short and unsatisfying for both of you.

from The Posssession movie

Mechanical Notes:

You have no magical abilities while your Spirit is not indwelling within you.  You can invite them in as an action. 

A Spirit can remain in you for a number of hours equal to their Damage Threshold - Your level.  So if your Spirit has a Damage Threshold of 7 and you are level 3, you can host your Spirit for a maximum of 4 hours.  For each additional hour they remain inside you, you take 1d6 CON damage.  If this reduces you to 0 CON, you die.  CON damage reduced like this is permanent.  You can only regain time by resting.  For each day you go without being possessed, you regain 1 hour of hosting time.  And even if your Spirit only enters you for a few minutes, this still consumes a minimum of 1 hour, no matter for how short it was. 

You can choose to have multiple Spirits indwell within you.  To calculate how long your body can endure, add the Spirit's Damage Thresholds/HD Totals together into one number. 

While your Spirit is indwelt, it gives you access to X Mana Dice (MD), where X is equal to the Spirit's Damage Threshold.  You will also have access to the Spirit's powers, natural abilities which it can use innately.  You will probably, but not necessarily, have to spend MD to activate these abilities.  These MD burn out on a 5 or 6, but do not trigger Chaos or Corruption. 

A Spirit may have some lesser abilities that you can use as long as the Spirit dwells within you. 

Additionally, Exorcists always suffer some minor physical changes to their bodies when possessed.  These changes never last, only remaining as long as the Spirit is within the Exorcist's body.

You can attempt to force a Spirit to remain within your body by contesting with it in a contest of wills.  Each of you should roll a COG check.  Each round, the winner may take an action, regardless of the other's opinion, including leaving the body (for the Spirit) or expelling the Spirit (for the Exorcist).  If someone wins 3 COG checks, and these need not be consequective, then that creature gains total control of the body and for the rest of the day, does not have to listen to the other.  However, if damaged, exposed to mind-altering drugs or powerful magics, a spirit can be persuaded to let go of the Medium, or a Medium's death-grip on a Spirit can be broken.       

Some Examples:

The Prince of Tigers (Damage Threshold 7).  The First of his kind and Father of all Tigers (or so he claims). 

Grants the following abilities:

+3d8 HP
+4 MD

By spending MD, you may add +[sum] to any roll made to sneak or hide.  You turn invisible if [sum] exceeds 10.  You turn visible if you attack or do something strenuous. 

By spending MD, you may give yourself +[sum] FS.  This FS lasts for 10 minutes or until consumed.  You can reabsorb this FS as a free action.  4 FS = 1 MD.

You gain the ability to grow claws from your hands and feet.  These claws do 1d6+Atk damage.  This counts as magical sharp damage.

You gain the ability to speak with animals as if you shared a language. 

Restriction: While Hosting The Prince of Tigers you...
- Fear Fire and must make a save to approach an uncontrolled fire or an enemy which can wield fire as a weapon.  If you take any Fire damage, you must save or flee.  If reduced to half HP and there is a chance of taking fire damage, the Tiger King will attempt to exit your body. 
- Must always take revenge upon those who hurt your kin and allies.  Refuse to do so and the Tiger King will attempt to leave your body. 

When hosting the Tiger King you gain stripes on your skin and slit-pupil eyes like a cat's.      
 
Aqualana, Mother of Royuno (Damage Threshold 8).  The Patron Spirit of a long dead civilization, once revered as a God, but now must make due with the babbled prayers of the Royunan's degenerate descendents.

Grants the following abilities:

+2d8 HP
+6 MD

By spending at least 1 MD, you can control an amount of water equal to what you could hold in a barrel or bathtub.  For each MD you spend, double the amount of water.  You may freely manipulate this, freezing, vaporizing or otherwise altering it as an action.  Attacks made with this water make attack rolls at 1d20+1d6+[dice] and do 2[dice] damage. 

By spending at least 1 MD, you can conjure clouds of fog.  1 MD creates a fogcloud that covers 50' square.  Double the size for each MD spent.

You can speak to crocodiles as if you shared a language.  By spending MD, you can control crocodiles and have them do your bidding.  For each MD you spend, you can control up to 2[dice] HD of crocodiles.  These crocodiles generally obey you, but are of limited intelligence and if forced into a suicidal or situation they perceive to be too dangerous, they must succeed a morale check or flee. 

You gain gills and can breathe underwater.

You gain the ability to swim as fast as a crocodile. 

Restriction: When hosting Aqualana, Mother of Ryuno you...
- Must never allow a crocodile to come to harm if you can prevent it, and punish those who do so.  Refuse to do so and Aqualana will attempt to exit your body. 
- Never give succor or aid to the ancestral enemies of Ryuno.  If you do so, Aqualana will immediately attempt to leave your body.   

While you host her, you will have blue-green hair and your skin will begin breaking out into patches of scales.

Lesser Examples-

Quival the Carpoi (3 HD).  A spirit of grain and harvest. 

Grants the following abilities:

+1d8 HP
+2 MD

By spending MD, you can cause plants to grow rapidly.  For each MD spent, a plant experience's one full season of growth in 1 minute.  Plants that would bear edible parts will have these parts fall off and be larger than normal.  If 4 or more [dice] are used, the fruits or produce of the plants will never spoil and heals 1d6 HP when consumed. 

By spending MD, you can cause plants to grow from your skin.  This gives you +[dice] to any stealth checks if in an area with plants, such as a field or in long grass.

Restriction: While hosting Quival the Carpoi you...
- Must not destroy the crops of any farmers or gardeners
- And aid any whose crops were destroyed, through accident or disaster

While hosting Quival your hair takes on the appearance of the local plant life, in spring it is full of green buds, in summer it is full of flowers in full bloom, in autumn your hair is russet gold, pumpkin orange and deep scarlet, in winter you are bald.
 
Yuito the Shurale (2 HD).  A spirit of the wild wood, but far more whimsical and gentle than the Folk. 

Grants the following abilities:

+2d8 HP
+3 MD

By spending MD, you can release a cloud of pollen that unbalances people and puts them in an inebriated state.  If [sum] exceeds their HP, they pass out for [dice] hours or until slapped awake. 

Restrictions: While hosting Yuito the Shurale you...
- Must flirt with and pursue comely girls (which by Yuito's standards is anything young that doesn't resemble a horse's rear). 
- Gather shiny objects.  He can't tell the difference between gems and shiny, but worthless objects such as glass beads.

While hosting Yuito your skin takes on a greenish hue and your limbs become slightly longer.

Exorcists of the Chain:

Spirits, just like people and animals, come in a variety of shapes and sizes.  They range from the smallest and most insignificant of cantrips to the godlike Sovereigns of the Faerie Courts, the Royals of the Animal Kingdoms and the Elemental Princeps. 

If they could be quantified as such, Exorcists of the Book commune with the most powerful spirits they can contact, Exorcists of the Rod mingle with Spirits who serve them as courtiers or as the ones who wish they could be permitted that honor, then Chain Exorcists deal with the beasts of the Spirit World. 

Exorcists following the path of the Chain seek out lesser Spirits, too strong and dangerous to be familiars but generally too weak or unintelligent to have much of a mind of their own and utilize them for their own purposes.  They are closer to animal trainers than true Exorcists, though the beasts they choose to work with are far more unnatural and bizarre than even the strangest things produced by the depths of the Wild.

Chain Exorcists summon these Spirits from the Other Side and put them to work here.  Sometimes they summon bestial spirits and train them like hunting hounds, while other times they will summon lesser spirits that do possess something of a self-aware mind, but those that have limited agendas or intelligence.  Generally, Chain Exorcists prefer a Spirit with some level of intelligence, so that it is possible to bargain with it, but not so smart that it can't be easily tricked or bullied into doing what you want.

Then, depending on what the Spirit wants and how intelligent it is, a pact will be sealed.  Pacts can be made between an Exorcist and Spirits without reason, those these bargains are closer to the bond between horse and rider or man and dog than between two peers. 

These Spirits can then be summoned by a Chain Exorcist, who will fight alongside them and aid them in their endeavors. 

Chain Exorcists are often looked down on by other Exorcists, but this might simply be because the Chain Exorcists have found great success.  Their approach works, and it does not require the great sacrifices of the path of the Rod or the Book, while still providing a non-neglible source of power.  And though Chain Exorcists generally lack the firepower of their greater cousins, they possess a flexibility that neither of their cohorts can match. 

Mechanical Notes:

I wrote about these in part 1.

from here

Sunday, August 21, 2022

OSR: Exorcist, ie Magical Pokemon Trainer

This is a class for playing a magical Pokemon Trainer.

There's a part 2 here.  

by Fahmi Fauzi
There are plenty of Spirits out there, many too large and self-important to be brushed aside as nuisances, but much too weak to be accepted into the household of one of the Noble Spirits or the Divine Courts.  Instead, these Spirits wander the Astral Sea or the Shallows, seeking out amusements or sustenance, some living in a near feral state.  Others manage to find mortals that can support it and may become the patron of a village or family.  In return for it's protection, the mortals will build it a shrine and make offerings to it.  In this way, a Spirit can find rest and peace. 

As creatures of thought and intention, Spirits are rarely able to create an identity for themselves.  They require the aid and attention of other beings to stabilize themselves into a single form with a singular personality.  This is why Spirits from the wilds of the Astral Sea are so often vicious and dangerous- they exist in a perpetual state of flux, never sure of who or what they are, or even what they are supposed to do.  This state leads to constant anxiety and disillusionment, which then leads to anger that is vented on lesser Spirits, mortals or anything else that happens to be nearby. 

Yet this is not the only interaction mortals have with lesser Spirits.  Some go out of their way to befriend such creatures, to commune with them and to even become partners with them.  Most of the time, such people are referred to as Exorcists.

Exorcist
Starting HP: 1/3 Con
Fighting Spirit: +2 per Exorcist Level, up to COG modifier
Atk Modifier: +1 per Exorcist Level, caps at +5
Starting Equipment: Traveling robes, token from your Companion, walking stick, bag of ritual ingredients, pair of daggers or shortsword

1: Spirit Pact, Spirit Animal Companion
2: Spirit Guide, Sacrificant
3: Ability transfer
4: Enter the Unseen World
5: Great Companion
6: Flood of Spirit
7: Spell parry
8: Free Transfer
9: Royal Companion

1: Spirit Pact, Spirit Animal Companion

Spirit Pact: You are bonded to a Spirit through a mutual Pact.  Both parties have obligations they must fulfill.  The Pact is only nullified upon the death or one or more signatory or with the mutual consent of both parties.  At level 1, work with the Referee to decide upon your specific obligations and relationships to your Companion. 
 
Spirit Animal Companion: You have a Magical Spirit Animal Companion.  Your companion cannot manifest physically on the Material Plane without you.  To summon it, you must spend 2 FS/HP.  You may also roll 1 Mana Die if you have any.  You control your companion as a secondary character and they generally obey your orders, but is not compelled to obey you and can refuse your call.  Your Companion's starting abilities and ability scores can be found below.

2: Spirit Guide, Sacrificant

Spirit Guide: You can see your Companion even when they are not manifested physically. 

Sacrificant: You learn how to offer sacrifices to your Companion.  By offering your Companion mana, he can repair his vessel, which is constructed of solidified mana.  If you have Mana Dice, you can transfer these to your Companion by touching them and concentrating for at least 1 minute.

If you don't have any MD, you can generate mana by holding something that can store mana, such as an arcane focus or a gemstone and doing something you absolutely hate, or that takes a lot of effort.  For example, if you hate crochet, doing that will help you build mana.  Depending the unpleasant or hard activity will give you 1 MD after 10 minutes of that activity.   

You can also cheat by sacrificing a living creature.  If you slaughter a creature ritualistically, you can steal their life force and cause your Companion to regain X HP, where X is the total remaining amount of HP the creature had.  To find this number, roll a number of d8s equal to the creature's HD and add the results together, then subtract any damage the creature took.  Rituals that do this take at least 10 minutes and requires the sacrifice to not be able to move out of the ritual site, as that will disrupt the ritual and prevent the absorption of power.   

3: Ability transfer

Ability transfer: Your Companion can, X times per day, where X is your COG modifier, lend you to one of his abilities without fully summoning him.  Your Companion must be willing to cooperate with you to allow this to happen and it must not violate the terms of your pact. 

4: Enter the Unseen World

With the help of your Companion, you can enter the Spirit World by meditating.  You must spend at least 10 minutes meditating in a place that is calm and quiet.  If you are in a noisy environment, you must succeed on a COG save to successfully ignore any distractions and enter the Spirit World.  On a success, you enter the Spirit World in the spirit.  You can also do this while sleeping.   

5: Great Companion

Great Companion: Your Companion grows stronger.  You gain 3 points.  You can spend one point to increase your Companion's ability scores, rerolling or adding an additional dice as your Referee chooses, or you can roll on the random Power table.  For 1 point, you can roll on the lesser Power table, but for 2, you can roll on the Greater Power table.  You may also spend 1 point to strengthen one of your Companion's Powers.     

6: Flood of Spirit

Blood Priest: You learn how to absorb mana from items that can store it as well.  When you have a vessel filled with Mana, you can draw power from it into yourself.  When you do this, you regain X Fighting Spirit (FS), where X is the amount of mana you've withdrawn from a the vessel.  This power is always removed from the vessel as d6s.  

You can also do this from blood sacrifices too.  When you make a blood sacrifice, you can designate yourself as the recipient of the power instead of your Companion.  When you do this, you regain X Fighting Spirit (FS), where X is the result of a creature's rolled HD. 

If you draw more mana than is needed to restore your Fighting Spirit, any leftover mana remains as temporary HP.  Leftover points are converted back into MD.  4 points of FS equals 1 MD.  If you have the ability to cast spells and have MD, then these MD go towards replacing those you have lost.  If you don't, they only last 10 minutes, after which the power leeches out of you and disappears.   

7: Spell parry

Spell parry: Your Companion, if they are willing, make a save as a free action when a spell is cast against you.  On a success, they deflect a spell directed against you personally.  If the spell was instead an area-of-effect ability that you were in the vicinity of, it gives you advantage on your save.  On a failure, your Companion still deflects the spell, but it instead affects your Companion instead. 

8: Free Transfer

Free transfer: As an action, as long as you are in the same plane of existence and can see each other, you can transfer Fighting Spirit from yourself to your Companion or vice versa.  Your Companion gains any transferred FS as HP, as their body is literally made of solidified material strung together with will.  You gain any HP from them as FS.  You can also spend MD and transform them into Fighting Spirit for yourself or HP for your Companion. 

9: Royal Companion

Royal Companion: Your Companion grows stronger.  You gain 3 points.  You can spend one point to increase your Companion's ability scores, rerolling or adding an additional dice as your Referee chooses, or you can roll on the random Power table.  For 1 point, you can roll on the lesser Power table, but for 2, you can roll on the Greater Power table.  You may also spend 1 point to strengthen one of your Companion's Powers.

Base Companion stats and abilities:

Your Companion has 5 Ability Scores:

Hit Points (HP)- How much damage a Spirit can take.  To see how much your Companion has, roll on the table below and when you get the number of HD, roll that many d8s and add the number together.
Armor Rating (AR)- How much a Spirit reduces incoming damage by. 
Attack (Atk)- How dangerous your Spirit is and how much damage it does.
Morale (Mor)- When your spirit will decide to hesitate or run away.  Starting Morale is 8+Partner's CHA modifier+Number of Spirit Animal Tamer levels the Companion has. 
Saves- What your Spirit uses to make Saves.  Saves are (7+HD) or less.

Native of the Shallows: As an action, a Spirit can leave our world and enter the Shallows of the Astral Sea.  It can come back as an action.  While in the Shallows it can observe inhabitants of the living world through reflective surfaces (mirrors, pools of still liquid, etc) but cannot affect them. 

Spirit Being: Spirits when in a physical universe have bodies made of mana.  Magical weapons and attacks automatically ignore their armor, while non-magical ones struggle to hurt them.

Example Companions:

Suufa, the White Lily.

Appearance- A white tiger with blue eyes and a lotus flower on the end of his tail.  His stripes move and change patterns whenever he's not being observed.
HP 21 (4 HD)
AR 3
Atk Bite (1d6+1 magical sharp)
Mor (see above)
Saves 11 or less

Suufa is a young Spirit who is consumed by his belief that he is an amazing creature who should be revered and worship and spend all his time laying around being adored and eating cakes.  He also has the equal desire to do some good for others, as he spent many years doing exactly that and his worshipers ended up being slaughtered.  He won't reveal that latter part, but the guilt weighs on his every day.  His greatest vice is his laziness and his greatest weaknesses are his guilt and insecurity, despite all his bluster and pomposity, as well as his fear of failure. 

Suufa has all the abilities of a Tiger, plus the ability to eat fire.  It's his favorite meal, especially if it's burning something interesting, like sweet-smelling woods or something expensive. 

The Lady in Stripes.

Appearance- A buxom human woman with a tiger head.  Wears robes of shimmering fabric and lots of gold and ivory jewelry.  She carries a sword of gold and jade that appears out of her sleeve whenever she needs it.
HP 36 (9 HD)
AR 4
Atk Sword (1d8+2/1d8+2 magical sharp)
Mor (see above)
Saves 16 or less  

The Lady in Stripes in a powerful spirit which serves only at her own pleasure.  All who cross her or invoke her displeasure find themselves mauled to death unexpectedly or disemboweled in a room that everyone was sure was empty besides them.  She despises civilization and industrial society, but not enough to go to war with it.  Or at least, not yet.  She is also known to be very crafty and is constantly working toward some sort of highly complex plan to do... something.  Most people believe she is playing a game against another powerful Spirit, or perhaps a God, for control over... something.  Regardless of what she's doing, it's very impressive no doubt, and you definitely don't want to stand in her way.  Currently she is seeking knowledge, to advance her own scheme and possibly to deny her rival this information (if this rival even exists).

The lady in stripes has all the abilities of a highly trained human warrior, as well as the ability to sense Undead near her, magically heal people, hypnotize them by looking into their eyes and bend and squish her body to fit through spaces far too small for her physical form to pass through.  She can also raise corpses as Undead servants and create food or water.

from here

Generate a Companion:

How Old is your Companion?

1d4

1- Fledgling.  Your Companion is a total novice.  He is very naive and could easily be tricked or manipulated.  He has 1d3+1 HD and an AR of 1d3.  He makes 1 attack of 1d6+1. 
2- Young.  Your Companion has a bit of experience, but he is still definitely a greenhorn.  He has 1d4+1 HD and an AR of 2.  He makes 1 attack that does 1d8+1 damage. 
3- Mature.  Your Companion has done this before and is probably older than you.  Add +1 when rolling on the Intelligence and Power tables.  He has 1d4+3 HD and an AR of 1d4+1.  He makes two attacks that do 1d6+2.      
4- Ancient.  Your Companion is old, older than you, your family, maybe even your tribe or your civilization.  Add +2 when rolling on the Intelligence and Power tables.  He has 1d6+3 HD and an AR of 4.  He makes 2 attacks that do 1d8+2.       

How intelligent is your Companion?

1d6

1- Beastial.  Your Companion is only about as smart as a dog or a clever beast. 
2- Dumb as a sack of rocks.  Your Companion is capable of reason, but still quite stupid. 
3- Clever but burdened with a persistent flaw that prevents them from developing wisdom.  You may pick or roll 1d4 [1= Laziness; 2= Arrogance; 3= Consumed by base desires for things like food, sex, etc; 4= Apathy.] 
4- Smart, but woefully ignorant about mortals and your world.  Probably very young or has never partnered with anyone.
5- Highly intelligent, almost certainly smarter than you.
6- Whatever it is, it's lying.  Reroll your Companion's intelligence, then roll a third time.  The second roll is what they actually are, the third is what they're pretending to be.  Do not add bonuses to the second roll.  Treat any rolls of this after the first as a "5".   

How Powerful is your Companion?

1d6

1- Not at all.  Your Companion has 1 lesser Power and nothing else. 
2- More lucky than strong.  Your Companion has 1d3 lesser Powers. 
3- Average.  Your Companion has 1 lesser Power and 1 Greater Power.  
4- Stronger than some.  Your Companion has 1d3 lesser Powers and 1 Greater Power. 
5- Stronger than most.  Your Companion has 1d4 lesser Powers and 2 Greater Powers. 
6- Blessed by Heaven.  Your Companion has 1d4 lesser Powers and 1d4 Greater Powers. 

What does your Companion want?

1d12

1- Wine, food and feasts.  To taste the fruits of man's labor.  A gourmand always on the lookout for edible delights. 
2- Debauchery, sex, the pleasures of the flesh.
3- Power.  Your Companion craves power and seeks it.  Perhaps not at any cost, but there is little they wouldn't do to achieve it.
4- Knowledge.  Your Companion has a mystery it wishes to solve, a conundrum that it must find a solution to.
5- Revenge.  Your Companion was wronged.  Those who are responsible must pay. 
6- Justice.  A great wrong was committed and your Companion knows who is responsible.  This crime must not go unpunished.  Victims must comforted, restitution made, villains punished.
7- To achieve it's destiny.  Your Companion believes it has a destiny that it must fulfill.   
8- To fulfill prophecy.  Your Companion has read the signs and it believes that the time of fulfillment is upon us.  He wants to make sure this prophecy is fulfilled.   
9- To pay a debt.  Your Companion owes someone something.  He must pay it back.   
10- Redemption.  Your Companion seeks absolution for past sins, to do something good to make up for all the black marks they've left behind.
11- Worship.  Praise, veneration, shrines built around it, songs sung in it's name, statues erected in it's honor, the whole she-bang.   
12- Enlightenment.  Your Companion seeks inner peace. 

What does your Companion fear?

1d6

1- Death.  Your Companion doesn't want to die.  He will not die for anyone or anything. 
2- Failure.  Your Companion fears failing to fulfill his mission or is insecure enough that he feels he can't ever fail, or everything will fall apart. 
3- Dishonor.  Your Companion has the soul of a warrior, proud and resolute.  The only thing he fears is disgrace.  He will do his duty to the end. 
4- Truth.  Your Companion has a secret.  It fears this secret getting out more than anything else. 
5- Enemy.  Your Companion has an enemy.  He fears nothing but the return of this enemy. 
6- Corruption.  Your Companion fears nothing more than that he will become something loathsome.

Random Companion Powers:

Lesser-

1d20

1- Your Companion does not leave footprints, except on 1d4 [1= Stone; 2= Wood; 3= The floors of buildings; 4= Nowhere, but your Companion leaves a powerful scent trail that lasts for 1d3 hours wherever they go.]
2- Your Companion can tell when someone is lying within 50'.  It can tell who is lying, but not what truth that creature is concealing. 
3- Your Companion can hide inside of 1d4 [1= Mirrors; 2= Paintings; 3= 3D art; 4= Songs and poems.] 
4- Your Companion can smell emotions and tell how people are feeling by their scent.
5- Your Companion can track a creature's mana as a Sage.
6- Your Companion can sense the presence of 1d6 [1= Other Spirits and Outsiders; 2= Undead; 3= Beasts; 4= Abberations; 5= Creatures aligned with Chaos; 6= Other humanoids.]
7- Your Companion can find treasure nearby.  Within 30', your Companion can sense the presence and rough direction of treasure, here defined as valuable items, coins, jewelry, etc. 
8- Your Companion can create illusions.  It can create 1 illusion that must fit within a 10' cube.  The illusion may produce sound and images, but has no substance nor can it deal damage.  Creatures, if they take an action and pass a DC (Companion HD + Your Spirit Animal Tamer levels) COG check to see the illusion is actually not real.  Your Companion can keep the illusion up for as long as he wishes.   
9- Your Companion, if within 10' of a sleeping creature, can enter that creature's dreams. 
10- Your Companion can temporarily make himself immune to 1d8 [1= Fire; 2= Acid; 3= Cold; 4= Necrotic; 5= Radiant; 6= Psychic; 7= Force; 8= Lightning] damage.
11- Your Companion can lull people to sleep.  If within 30' a creature, your Companion can sing a lullaby that causes creatures to save.  On a failed save, creatures fall asleep and only awaken if attacked or a loud noise occurs nearby.  This lullaby cannot be heard accept by those already alerted, paranoid or agitated.  Creatures who are already tired or sleepy make the save with disadvantage.  Creatures who sleep like this recover 1d4 extra HP if using this song before they rest. 
12- Your Companion can stave off exhaustion, letting people keep going without resting for 1d6 hours after they would ordinarily need to stop and rest. 
13- Your Companion can hypnotize people by looking into their eyes for at least 1 minute.  At the end, the creature is hypnotized, unless they manage to look away or ignore your Companion somehow.  Hypnotized creatures are highly suggestive, but will not do things that conflict with their moral code. 
14- Your Companion can stick to walls and ceilings like a spider. 
15- Your Companion can breathe water as well as air. 
16- 3/Day, your Companion can magically heal a creature for X HP, where X is that creature's HD.  
17- Your Companion can create a small extra-dimensional storage space that can fit up to 10 Inventory slots worth of items. 
18- Your Companion can produce light that is equivalent to a torch. 
19- Your Companion can turn it's bones and flesh elastic, allowing it to bend and stretch through spaces it could never ordinarily fit through. 
20- Your Companion can eat 1d6 [1= Stone; 2= Metal; 3= Wood; 4= Bone; 5= Dirt and loose Earth; 6= Fire.]  These nourish it as if they were food. 

Greater-

1d20

1- 1/Day, your Companion can breathe fire.  This fire does 3d6 damage, save for half and strikes in a 30' line or a 15' cone, Companion's choice. 
2- Your Companion can fly and hover in the air. 
3- Your Companion can turn invisible as a free action for as long as it wants, but turns visible as soon as it attacks or exerts itself.
4- 3/Day, your Companion can teleport up to 50' as a free action. 
5- Your Companion, by touching another creature, can drain life energy, causing that creature to take 1d6 damage and gaining 1d6 HP. 
6- Your Companion can steal luck/fortune.  By touching a creature, your Companion can mark that creature.  If your Companion chooses to do so, when that creature rolls a d20, your Companion can steal the result of that d20 and replace the result with whatever it rolled on it's d20. 
7- Your Companion can, as an action, raise a corpse as an Undead servant.  The Undead has 1 HD and is permanently bound to your Companion and you.  Your Companion can control up to X HD worth of Undead, where X is your Companion's HD. 
8- 1/Day, your Companion can create food or water.  This meal is only equivalent to travel rations, being largely tasteless, but filling and nourishing. 
9- Your Companion can move objects with it's mind.  As an action, your Companion can lift an object that weighs no more than a child.  Creatures who are affected by this ability get a save to resist. 
10- Your Companion can shapeshift into other creatures.  As an action, your Companion can take on the appearance of another creature that is within 1 size category of it.  No matter what form it takes, it's ability scores stay the same, though it might loose abilities tied to a specific body part. 
11- Your Companion can summon magical armor.  1/Day, your Companion can cover itself in a shell of light, granting itself +Xd6 FS, where X is your Companion's HD.  This armor lasts for 10 minutes or until it is all consumed.  
12- Your Companion can 1/Day, summon up to X HD worth of animals and control these animals as if they retainers.  The animals will obey reasonable orders, but will not obey orders they consider against their interests or too dangerous. 
13- Your Companion can peer into the future.  3/Day, as an action, you can ask your Companion about the likely outcome of something that will happen in the future.  Your Companion will give you an answer that is percentage based.  For example if you ask, "What are our odds of success if we rob the Dragon and then make a run for it," your Companion might give you the answer of "A 15% of success and an 85% that at least one of you ends up barbequed."  The more specific the question, the better, unless it is in combat, as those are too chaotic to predict more than a few second ahead.    
14- As a reaction, your Companion can slow projectiles, reducing their incoming damage by their attack and damage dice.  For example, if your Companion's Atk was 1d8+2, he rolls that die and reduces the attack roll of the projectile by that much.  Your Companion can only do this 1/round. 
15- Your Companion can, for 1 minute per day, make himself immune to 1d3 [1= Sharp (piercing, slashing); 2= Bludgeoning; 3= Falling] damage. 
16- Your Companion can, for 1 minute per day, create an anti-magic field around himself, absorbing all nearby mana and preventing anyone he doesn't want to for casting spells for at least 1 minute.  This effect lasts for 1 minute, but can be ended early if your Companion loses his concentration as a result of taking damage or becoming distracted by something else.   
17- Your Companion can temporarily grow or shrink in size, reducing or increasing his size category by 1.  While larger, he get +1d6 to STR and CON checks and saves, while doing +2 damage and getting +2 to attacks.  Enemies get a +2 bonus to hit them as well, because of their larger size.  When smaller, he gets +1d6 to DEX and CHA checks and saves, as he's smaller and cuter. Reverse all bonuses from when he's larger. 
18- Your Companion can 1/Day, after biting or scratching a creature, cause it to take 1d6 DEX damage a round.  If this damage reduces a creature to 0 DEX, the creature turns to stone.  Before they are petrified, this effect can removed by a casting of 'Dispel Magic' or similar ability.  Once petrified, however, the effect can only be reversed by powerful magicks or by a similar method of breaking a curse. 
19- Your Companion can possess creatures.  By touching a creature, it turns immaterial and enters that creature's body.  Each round, the creature and your Companion must make COG checks against each other.  The winner each round controls the body.  The first one to three wins, which need not be consequetive, takes control of the body for 1 day or until they lose concentration, such as suffering a lot of pain, becoming sleepy, being exposed to substances that alter the mind-body connection (such as hallucinogens or alcohol), etc, then the loser may attempt to reassert control. 
20- Your Companion can curse creatures.  By speaking aloud in a language the creature knows and where that creature can hear, your Companion can describe the fate of the creature.  This becomes the curse and is guaranteed to come true unless actions are taken to break the curse.  Your Companion cannot curse another creature until the first curse is fulfilled or broken.  Referee's Discretion applies to whether a curse is possible or how it is fulfilled.

by Alexandra Malygina (Fler)

Friday, August 5, 2022

Buckets of Blood: Bad Future Time-Traveler

Another class for Buckets of Blood.  

artist unknown
You come from the future, and man did it suck.  Something BAD happens in the future, whether that be the damn toasters rising up, an alien invasion, humanity offing our own species via nuclear firework show or man-made supervirus or the Gates of Goddamn Hell opening and the dead walking the Earth.  Regardless, it totally ruins everything.  No more flying cars and form-fitting jumpsuits with built in A/C and massagers, now it's all toxic dust, cannibalism and screaming. 

As such, you decided to go back to try and stop it.  There's a FIXED EVENT that will occur soon after you arrive.  If you can prevent that event, the apocalypse can be staved off.  But you have a problem.  Or rather, a whole mess of them. 

Firstly, you're way off course.  You arrived weeks or months ahead of schedule.

Secondly, your knowledge of the past is rapidly becoming useless, if it was any good to begin with.  Changing history will do that, you suppose, but it's still a massive pain as you find yourself suddenly and rapidly out of your depth, with no way back to shore. 

Thirdly, your time machine is broken.

And last, but most certainly not least, you're stuck with these losers.  And trust me, if saving the future wasn't hard enough, now you have to do it in the company of a bunch of trigger-happy freaks more interested in killing people for their own retarded agendas, stealing everything not nailed down or indulging in weird, primitive vices.  Hopefully, you teaming up with them doesn't prevent you from being able to SAVE THE FUTURE.

Also, let's hope that you traveling back in time to try and fix the timeline isn't what doomed it in the first place.  Because that would totally suck.

from The Terminator

You get +1 to HP per template and -1 to Knowledge checks relating to History or Knowledge of the Past/Present per Template (you start with +8)
Starting Equipment: Form-Fitting Jumpsuit, Broken Time Machine (see below), Future Tech (see below) History Textbook from the year 2XXX
Starting Skills: 1) Archeotech, 2) Lock-Picking, 3) Theoretical Physics, 4) History
 
A: Future Tech, Knowledge of the Past
B: Tech Expert, Jury-Rig
C: Broken Time Machine
D: The Future is Now

A:

Future Tech: You start with one piece of Future Technology.  You have...

1d6
1- Ray Gun.  You have a futuristic gun from where you came from.  It 1d4 [1= Freezes people in ice- does 2d6 CON damage, it it reduces a creature to 0 CON it freezes them in ice.  They'll thaw after 1d4 hours; 2= Paralyzes them and inflicts agonizing pain- Does 1d8 DEX damage, dropping someone to 0 causes them to be unable to move; 3= Disintegrates people- Does 2d6 energy damage, save for half.  If it reduces a creature to 0 HP, they and all equipment they are carrying vanish in a flash of light; 4= Shoots lasers- 2d6 fire damage, save for half.]  All Ray Guns overheat on a roll of max damage and will need at least 1 round to cool down.  Additionally, each time you use one, roll 1d20.  On a "1", the Ray Gun stops working and will need to be repaired (a gloomy prospect in this time). 
2- Jetpack.  You have a jetpack that lets you fly and levitate.  You gain a flying speed equal to your walking speed and can hover in the air.  Your Jetpack can store enough fuel for 1 hour of flight before it needs to be refilled.  It has a hydrogen fuel cell and thus, can be refilled with common water.  Unfortunately, it's super explosive, so it anyone ever scores a Critical Hit against you, you must save.  On a failed save, your Jetpack explodes, dealing 3d6 damage to everything within 50'.     
3- Helper Intelligence.  You brought your trusty robot back from the future with you.  Your robot looks like a 1d4 [1= Retro-future robot, all gleaming metal in a humanoid form, featureless face, articulated hands; 2= Robot Dog with a screen for a face and realistic tail; 3= Tiny floating sphere the size of a softball with tiny screen and holographic projector; 4= Seemingly normal human in form-fitting jumpsuit, but you can see signs of the fact that it was manufactured- bar code on the bottom of foot, plastic nodes on the back of the neck, etc.]  Regardless of form, your Helper Intelligence is friendly, helpful and cheery.  They can access computer systems, do research for you, and do anything a well-trained human servant can do.  Bound by the Three Laws though, so it cannot help in a fight.  Also, will only obey you or others who you tell it too.
4- Holocube.  A cube of crystal, glass and metal that can project a realistic hologram up to 30' wide and 10' tall.  Can also make sounds and record what it sees around it, then recreate it via hologram. 
5- Liquid Metal Multi-Tool.  A piece of plastic that can be programmed to take the form of any small tool that could fit into your hand, such as a hammer, chisel, knife, lockpick, spatula, etc.  It cannot form anything not made of metal or anything with moving parts. 
6- Energy Sword.  A badass, but totally antiquated weapon designed to sheer through power armor, so it makes short work of almost anything here.  Does 2d8 damage when Power Field Generator is turned on, 1d6 when not.  When the Power Field Generator is on, it can cut through anything not super-hard or indestructible (Referee's Discretion), but this sucks power.  You can only use it 1d20+3 times before the Sword runs out of power and needs to be recharged.  And recharging it will be really hard in this time.   

Knowledge of the Past: Once per Day, you can declare you remember something from your studies about the past.  If you're trapped in a building, you can remember you saw the blueprints of this building and know of a side door, or if you're in a bank, you can remember that the manager keeps a shotgun under his desk (he'll heroically use it to stop a robbery in a few years).

B:

Tech Expert: The first lesson of Time Travel is that things will break and you better have some way to fix it.  As such, you're highly practiced with older technologies and can easily repair most technology from this era, provided you have tools and time.  You can also jury-rig things to work just long enough to work.  Fixing technology from your own time is a lot harder and requires a bunch of trial and error at best. 

Jury Rig: If you want to create some crazy device out of existing tech or parts, there's a 1d10% equal to the Number of Templates you have that you'll be able to succeed.  For example, if you want to make a battery out of acid, some copper tubes and some wires, you might be able to pull it off.  If you want to brew up some pipe bombs with some chemicals you found in a shade-tree mechanic's garage, there's a chance you can do that.  Referee's discretion applies on whether something is possible, but you'll always be more equipped to try than most.  

C:

Broken Time Machine: Your Time Machine is still busted, but you partially fixed it.  Now you can use it for other purposes, though not for traveling through time.  Your Time Machine is...

1d4

1- A cool sports car.  Get going up to a pre-set speed and hit the Flux Capacitor you tear the fabric of space and time, disappearing in a pair of fiery tire tracks.  That isn't an option anymore, of course, but you have managed to get some of the tech working.  As an action, you can turn the car immaterial by de-synchronizing with the timestream, allowing you to pass through solid objects.  Your car can remain out of sync with the timestream for up to 1 minute, before realigning with the current flow of time.  After using the flux capacitor like this, you must wait at least 10 minutes for it to cool down. 
2- A room in this house.  Your time machine appears as a mostly empty room in a pre-existing structure, as if it was always there.  Inside, the only items in the room is an activation lever, a keyslot, a control panel and series of clocks displaying Absolute Time, Current Time and the Destination Time.  You cannot travel through time, but you can, by pushing the button on the key fob, make your time machine appear inside any building you are currently inside of, and then, by climbing inside, send it to any other building.  You can take it back to any building you have been to, or any building you know the Absolute Chronospatial position of.  You can summon your time machine via your key fob once before it needs to recharge by spending at least 1 hour inside your time machine. 
3- Turn Tables.  Your time machine is a series of turn tables that can be manipulated to kick any party up to 11 or to travel through time.  Or at least, they could.  Your repairs enable you to turn them partially on and communicate with a version of yourself in alternate timelines.  For example, you can speak to a future or alternate version of yourself to try and learn more about your current situation.  You may do this 1/Day.  However, each time you do this, there is a chance that the future changes because of what you learned, which can lead to escalating changes and other bad effects.        
4- Your time machine didn't travel with you, instead it only transported you.  The time machine is still in the future and if you leave a message in a pre-arranged place, there is a 1d10% chance that your message survives to the future.  This means you cannot travel on your own, but it means that if your message makes it to the future, you can ask your future contacts for almost anything.  Now, remember, you come from a Bad Future, so your future contacts do not have complete records on the past nor an abundance of wunder-tech to send you.  However, they will do what they can to help you Save the Future.   

D:

The Future is Now: The prophesized FIXED EVENT that you were sent back is going to happen- within one week.  You can describe the events of what is going to happen to the Referee, then he rolls secretly.  Depending on what he rolls, that reflects the truth of your statements.  For example, if you were sent back to stop Humans from going to Mars and knew that one astronaut would breach containment for 1 hour on the day before the launch, your Referee would roll on the following table to see how much your actions had changed the future. 

How much has the circumstances around the FIXED EVENT changed?

1d6
1- Not at all.  The FIXED EVENT will play out exactly as you describe it.  Your knowledge of details is entirely pristine, but once the bullets start flying, who knows what will happen?
2- Only a bit.  One or two details have been altered, but your description of the circumstances around the FIXED EVENT are 70-90% accurate.
3- Key Details.  The circumstances you described are largely accurate, but certain details around the FIXED EVENT have been changed.
4- 50% accurate.  Any detail you describe from the FIXED EVENT has a 50% of being wrong. 
5- Mostly different.  While some details will remain the same, most of the circumstances around the FIXED EVENT have changed. 
6- Entirely different.  You have no idea what will cause the FIXED EVENT to occur, as your actions have so altered circumstances that your knowledge of precedings before the FIXED EVENT are entirely worthless.       

If you manage to prevent the FIXED EVENT or change it so that the original outcome never happens, your mission is a success.  You may be able to return to the future then, though it will be a future you were never a part of.  However, it will probably be way cooler than your current future.  Alternatively, you can choose to stay in the past with a new piece of future tech or other appropriate boon.  Though to be honest, why would you do that?

by thesheypyg