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About Pyronnic

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    Grad student, statistician

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  1. I'm very happy to hear this is moving along. I'm eagerly awaiting the Grimoire!
  2. Oh certainly. I understood that from your previous post. Restraining a spirit from escape is certainly a useful addition to the list I had started in my initial post. Binding into an object (or place) would be a different CM, but perhaps one that is harder to pull off, or riskier for the shaman. I hope to put some more thought into this over the next couple weeks (assuming work slows down and I get more time to do fun stuff).
  3. I'm not sure how far the mirroring should go. I don't want it to feel exactly like physical combat, but I do want some parallels between physical and spiritual combat. For example, having some tactical choices to make and a variety of strategies that may be useful sounds fun. The Spirit Screen, Spirit Block, and Spirit Resistance spells in RQ3 were essentially a form of spiritual armor, so I can certainly see wanting to have similar spells as one option. Similarly, some kind of active defense would make sense as well. That way, you'd see why there's a real difference between a shaman and a normal warrior type character once they're on the spirit plane because the shaman would have more skills (and at higher percentages). The shaman is trained to engage in spirit combat, so he or she ought to be comparatively much more effective there than someone who has the same POW score but who hasn't been trained. Maybe the thing to focus on is making spirit combat more distinct from physical combat by defining CMs that may not have clear physical analogs. One source of inspiration could be novels that have touched on things like psychic or psionic combat and see what ideas I can pick out of them. Mythological sources may also offer some good concepts. I like the idea that some spirit combat CMs might allow you to end a fight faster without having the whole thing just be a matter of grinding down the opponent's power points. So, the idea of one CM that allows you to trap a spirit could be narrated as having tricked the foe into entering a container that it can't easily escape. The notion that shamans are sly and tricky appeals to me, so having a variety of CMs reflecting that would be fun.
  4. Although my preferred base system is BRP, I really like the combat manoeuvres (CMs) in MRQII because they make physical combat more dynamic and interesting by giving the player tactical decisions and choices. I'm going to import CMs into a BRP game I'm planning, but I want to give shamanic characters a way to make spirit combat just as interesting as physical combat. So, what might serve as the equivalent of CMs in spirit combat? How else can we make spirit combat more interesting? Possible spirit combat maneuvers might include: Steal power points from foe Disorient/stun/confuse foe (who then loses some actions) Trap/bind foe in into an object or place (may require having a prepared enchantment or POW sacrifice, plus some sort of resistance roll) Trick foe into changing targets (e.g., redirect foe to attack one of its allies) Some other ideas I've been contemplating for spirit combat include: Making new skills for spirit combat attack (base damage 1d3) and defense (might work like dodge or parry) Creating a spiritual damage bonus based on POW+INT (using same progression as normal damage bonus) Option to create enchanted items that have uses in spirit combat (weapons, armor, etc.). For example, that silly-looking chicken bone hanging on the shaman's belt may actually work as a club in spirit combat!
  5. Absolutely go for it. Bring us new spells, new enchantments and rituals, new powers, and new types of undead, preferably including ones based on less well-known real-world myths and legends. Maybe some non-European sources could give us some interesting new takes on what undead can be and do, and how they might behave. But, one big thing to cover is how different cultures might define and respond to necromancy differently. A civilized culture that mostly follows orthodox religions might call a shaman summoning his ancestor a necromancer and freak out about the evil of disturbing the dead, but surely his own tribe will have a drastically different perspective on it when said ancestor teaches a new spell to a warrior of the tribe. But, the same tribe might revile a rival tribe's shaman for capturing and binding one of their ancestors's spirits. These sorts of culture clashes can create plot hooks and open the door to interesting stories. So talk about that! Tell us what social roles necromancers fill and how they might fit into different societies and environments. Give us ideas for interesting ways to use them in our adventures and game worlds. Similarly, talk about how there can be different kinds of undead, some of which might not be intrinsically evil. Imagine the willing spirit that animates a corpse to defend a sacred tomb - that's way different than binding a near-mindless, blood-mad spirit into a body to create a ghoul that feasts on the flesh of anyone intruding near the necromancer's lair. They're created differently, they're likely to have different powers and weaknesses, and they should act differently too. OH, and bring on the liches!
  6. I don't remember the exact year, but I think it was sometime around 1981-1984. I was pretty young when my cousins introduced us to D&D (it was one of the boxed sets - either red or blue). Eventually we moved up to AD&D, which was game the majority of our early gaming. Later on, one friend switched over to using Rolemaster for his game then later on his younger brother started running a RuneQuest 3 campaign (in a homebrew world, not in Glorantha). I remember briefly dabbling with Star Frontiers at one point, and maybe Villains & Vigilantes. Touched on Shadowrun a couple times in early college, and maybe Champions around the same time. But after getting into RuneQuest, that became my own personal choice for running campaigns. Now I've got BRP and I hope to start a game with that soon.
  7. Rust - I remember a film called "The Mission" (The Mission (1986)) that might have the right kind of soundtrack for the Spanish/Mesoamerican setting. I remember it having some really poignant music. And it was a damn good film, too.
  8. Rust, I agree that situations like you're describing (e.g., a ruler trying to influence a Thieves' guild) call for different skills. Having a high "Status (country)" doesn't necessarily imply that you'd have high influence with the guild, where a "Status (Thieves Guild)" skill would be more useful and should precedence. I think I'd give the ruler attempting to apply the former skill when the latter is more appropriate a penalty and/or make it a difficult skill roll because while the guild is part of the country it is also a fairly insular and distinct social group. In addition, I'd make success come with more strings - maybe the guild would help, but would demand some favor in return. Regardless of whether one just uses the Status skill or uses both Status and Influence as separate skills , the important part is that either way of doing things gives the GM a mechanic to make social connections an interesting part of the game. If used well, then being able to navigate the social world is as useful to the player characters as being able to fight or to cast spells. That's what's important to me. Personally, I will just use Status mostly because it's simpler to have just one skill than to have two that are (in my view) pretty closely related. I would like to hear other people's ideas on how to make creative use of Status/Influence skills though.
  9. The Status skill description says you can have specialties in social groups, professions, and so on, so the way I read it in the rules as written was pretty much what you're suggesting here. The RAW specifically say that you can use a skill check to influence people and/or obtain access to resources (e.g., get a loan, forgive a debt). That said, I really like your idea and the discussion it's already generated. It's particularly useful to define what various groups even have to offer, whom they're willing to offer it to, and how to model the idea that you can't constantly call in favors. Tying skill checks to actually having done something to benefit an organization or group and to further its goals is just spot on. Now - iImagine using this for a spy-type character who is infiltrating a target group - the challenge is to be seen doing good stuff for the group (leads to Status increase, hence further opportunities to gather info) but not to get caught betraying them or doing stuff that is clearly against their best interests. I think I'd even create a mechanic for how the latter (if you're caught) can lead to rapid skill decreases. Such a mechanic would also be the sort of thing that could motivate a noble with "Status (specific country)" to hide their misdeeds from their fellow citizens because getting caught is shameful and decreases your status.
  10. That poor trollkin is doomed. If the critter doesn't get him, the matriarch of the troll clan will certainly smack him into the afterlife for letting the critter gnaw on Head-Masher, which is her favorite mace.
  11. Hi folks, Regarding the issue of whole groups of people running around with long-duration spells applied to them, we once had a problem with that in another game I played (different game system). The GM quite naturally reasoned that if it is not unusual to encounter groups of people who are boosted to the gills with various spells, the natural strategy is to have foes start encounters by using a very powerful "dispell magic" to wash off that nasty protection & boosting magic. If one is relying on those long-duration spells then suddenly lose them, it can really turn an encounter around.
  12. I'm looking forward to this new magic monograph, so add 1 to the expected number of sales. Will you be porting over the old spells largely unchanged, or are you adjusting anything like pp costs to be consistent with the typical levels in the BRP book? Steve
  13. I'm pretty sure that the page 30-31 description that says a character can temporarily store up twice their POW in power points is the definition of overcharging. The points in excess of the character's POW score are the "overcharge", but they dissipate after a night's sleep or at some other game-master determined time frame or event. The overcharge power points have to be used up before the character's normal power points, and they do not regenerate with rest or passage of time.
  14. Here are a few thoughts on the advantages of using a shield. 1. It allows you a better chance to parry missile weapons than you would have without a shield. 2. You can use it to try a knockback-based attacks (bash the enemy with the shield and hopefully knock said foe over or back). 3. You might get some protection from an area-of-effect attack (try parrying an acid-splash with your sword and see how far that gets you). 4. You don't always have the space available to dodge (narrow, crowded hallway, or when trying to maintain a phalanx formation). Shields are good for parrying there. 5. You can use a shield to block an attack against one of your comrades (who maybe doesn't see the attack coming).
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