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Thread: My Concept Vault

  1. #21
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    I'm not sure what you mean by cosmic, but it sounds incredibly powerful, but also difficult to obtain.

    On the flip side. Gravity and heat would be extremely abundant, meaning that would never run out of the energy.

    A fun thing I could see would be a wizard drawing kinetic energy from a punch, draining all the force behind it, and then using it to send the force right back at the attacker.

  2. #22
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    Cosmic is actually one of a few types that is unknown to Science at the present time. Luck is a manifestation of Cosmic for example.

    Some are abundant but you can only absorb one at a time. Your idea for a 'spell' is exactly why normal combat would be nothing to these people. Only Magical combat would matter. Gives me a chance to use different basic mechanisms for the fighting.

    Another minor complication is that when things are abundant this is taken into consideration when putting the Energies to use. Gravity for example is obviously going to be connected to any sort of movement and a lot of other very common things. So even for Energies that are everywhere Character may have to learn techniques to enhance their ability to absorb it.



    Loki,

    Ran out of time this morning. Out of your list 'Mantra' comes closest. But it needs a bit of western influence which sadly lets 'Mantra' out. I set the founding of the school in 1802

    1802

    And if I did not call it a School it could easily be something a bit different. Used Fortress already so I would have to come up with a new one.




    A.T
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  3. #23
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    I have been looking at different ways to do Combat for a while. Finding different sorts of actions that could be taken during a fight beyond blasting or shielding yourself.

    What if the Energy Landscape were as important to the outcome of a fight as tactics? This idea would be based on the concept that different 'spells' work better in different environments. Gravity is everywhere so flying would always be possible but an excess of certain other Energies could cause flying to be more difficult.

    One of the Players might have to expend Energy at the start to 'prep the Battlefield'. By doing this they alter the basic Energy Landscape a bit to favor the things the Team is going to do, or to mess with their enemy. Lots of choices to make here. If you enhance Flying then your enemies can make use of that as well.

    It would not be possible to develop one simple set of actions that lead to success every time. If your enemies have similar abilities you might attempt to dampen those things that you are really good at. Victory in this case would be based on how well you could use your lesser abilities. Hopefully you can do that better than they can.

    Combat as dynamic logic puzzle really.


    A.T
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  4. #24
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    We could probably make a wheel where certain element are more powerful against other elements, and weaker against other elements.

    A quick version: (The element on the left would be weak, the one to the right would be strong)
    9-3-7-6-4-5-8-2-1-9...
    OR
    Electricity loses to Kinetic, which loses to LifeForce, which loses to Psychic, which loses to Sonic, which loses to Gravity, which loses to Cosmic, which loses to Light, which loses to Heat, which loses to Electricity.

    This would only provide a moderate advantage, nothing to major. A decent Psychic User could still trample a novice Sonic User.

    This could be adapted to a defense action. So if the enemy uses a fireball (Heat) you could defend with a lightning wall (Electricity) which would be very effective, a fire/ice wall (Heat) which would be moderatly efective, any other sort of barrior (other than light) would till be rather effective, or a prism shield thing (light) which would be quite ineffective, so you'd better be a lot better at light than your opponent is at fire, or it's going to get through and probably kill you.

    Also, we could so far as to say that all people are born with an attraction to one or two of the elements, which would give them a bonus to that element.

    A perfect senario would, if many wizards teamed up, have each one specialise in a different element. That might be too effective though, so during character creation, you may want to make sure that the characters remain hidden, so there could be some overlap.

  5. #25
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    Sometimes I add in some other elements just to make the Design unique. In this case I thought I would make Character Creation complely about the Human with no references to Magic at all. Rather than have people jocking for different types of approaches they can just decide that inside the Game itself.

    But I do like the idea of each PC having latent Talents that they are not aware of. These would come out once they got started and could influence their choices.


    Combat

    I think in terms of raw Energies there would be a fixed table of what is stronger than what. But that sort of combat would be too simple and probably not used all that much. Mostly I see it as the combination of a sort of Tug of War where each side is pouring energy into the fight and rolling to see how much effect their efforts have.

    The idea of Elemental interactions does work though. If your Enemy incorporates an Ice Wall into their defenses attacking with Fire would be the best way usually.

    Chess is a game with only 6 types of Pieces with unique movement styles. But the combinations of how they can be used is pretty much infinite. Kinda going for that idea. A Combat System where distance and most of the usual things just don't matter at all.


    A.T
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  6. #26
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    Would there be a set amount of energy you can absorb? I would think yes, else you could have your finger stuck in an outlet for a week and then blow up the world...

    Or we take the route that common things like gravity and light don't convert efficiantly into magic, therefore even if you can constantly take gravity from the air, you need a lot of gravity-energy to cast fly so it balances out versus LifeForce, in which you could steal one person's life force, killing them, and make it last for quite a while.

  7. #27

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    As long as you are incorporating strengths and weaknesses into a energy hierarchy, it might be interesting to add elements creation interactions too like in the Chinese elements. In the five chinese elements each element can destroy another (fire->metal->wood->earth->water->fire...) but there is also a philosophy that certain elements enhance or create others (fire->earth->metal->water->wood->fire...) This could add some complexity of the "rock paper scissors" mechanic of the energies and there are already some easy connections: Light creates heat, which is moving particles and could possibly enhance kinetic which could create sonic and so forth, or perhaps you would start out with moving electric fields creating magnetism which could affect gravity, whatever. This might create more than a simple "I put more energy into the environment" and might create a difference between having enough energy to cast and how much bang you get for your buck. Or perhaps just a more nuanced power progression.

    Just an idea.

  8. #28
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    Dr. Leo,

    Actually I don't want to have any limits on the amount of any Energy that a person can hold. When PCs are not fighting or otherwise expending Magic they are always drawing in something. This idea forms part of the foundation actions of the game.

    One thing I always think about is what exactly a PC will be doing moment to moment in the Game. With an RPG there is of course an Infinity of possibilities. But since a Game always has a point or focus PC tend to select from a fairly limited set of choices most of the time. So I think about those and in this case I want to come up with new types of Game Mechanisms. Wierd ways to do a number of different things.

    I think as long as what you have to expend is large enough (and a point a second or more adds up fast outside of Combat) then it will work.


    Pen,

    I have always favored Air - Earth - Fire - Water - Spirit myself but what you described is pretty much what I am thinking.

    PCs will always know they are moving though the Sea of all the Energy types. The balance moment to moment or perhaps place to place will always be an interest. Having connection between the types would just be part of the puzzle-like scheme.

    I am considering how we could do multi-stage 'spells'. The first one runs from the moment you trigger it and sets the conditions for the second 'spell'. As long as the first is going you can cast the second whenever you need to. Your first stage 'spell' could possibility also set conditions for other of your group to cast similar second 'spells'.

    So this is not that much more different that a Cleric running a Prayer or a Chant. But it would work a bit differently since the initial spell generally does nothing useful except set up the second. You have to constantly expend Energy to maintain the initial spell and if it is somehow disrupted you lose your ability to cast the second.

    Maybe this is too much but I can also see multistage work.

    Spell 1: Modify the Energy conditions of the current location, runs til the task is done
    Spell 2: Creates a container for Energies and begin filling it
    Spell 3: Link others to the container so they can contribute to the filling
    Spell 4: The actual Spell takes all the accumulated Energies, shapes them, and throws them at something.

    Now imagine if it took 6 people an Hour to fill this Energy Container. Their goal is to find a Dragon and blast it so they have to try and arrive just after they are ready to use the big pool of collected energy. Trying to get to their goal location and keeping the spells running while dealing with minor distractions might just prove interesting.



    A.T
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  9. #29
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    Concept #7
    Working Title: Role Playing Noir

    My last few Games have all involved a fair amount of Technology. I am fairly good with that stuff but I have been thinking about doing something very different. Something simplier in a lot of ways and much more focused on Characterization and atmosphere.

    Society evolves over time and one of the things that changes is the amount of general knowledge that exists. Once you move into the modern age (lets say 1980+) people know a lot more than in previous times. They know about fundamental forces and the basics of Science.

    But when you go back things get simplier. I have always been struck by how effective the original Shadow could be even though all he had was a very limited power of Invisibility. Most of the SuperHero types from the 40s and earlier had little to no actual power but instead put what they had to very effective use.

    Setting a Game in the 1930s or 40s also means you have have the Nazi's as an enemy which is always fun.

    Current very rough Concept

    1940. May. WWII has started but the US is not involved yet but Germany is about to invade France.

    The United States Government is concerned. A wave of sabotage and a massive increase in crime have roots in German Spy activity. They fear that the Country will be destroyed from within long before a jackboot lands on American soil. So a plan is devised. The most comprehensive review of the whole America population ever undertaken is begun. It's goal is to identify a special breed of person.

    This group is assembled on May the 1st. They are told of the dangers of the subversive actions of the German Agents. They are also shown information about Crime and the organized path it seemed to be taking nationwide. The assembled men and women are told they might be able to help.

    What is revealed to these people is that there is more to Life than what is commonly accepted. Over the course of it's history the USA has acquired a number of objects. Every single one of them defies all Scientific logic. They are items of power many of which are connected to Myths and Legends.

    Possessing even one of them turns an ordinary man or woman into something more. A Hero.

    More than the items there is also knowledge. Things that are difficult to understand unless you are just the right kind of person. A single individual might only be able to learn one new thing. But that one thing might allow them to Teleport across a room so again each one is extremely powerful.

    For as long as possible it is important that the identities and actions of our new Heros remain a secret. Newspapers, Police and other Officials will be directed to quietly keep things under wraps.

    ... End

    This could stay limited to the USA and involve what has been described. Or... I could get ambitious and eventually allow the new Heros to affect the path of WWII. Pretty much along the Green Hornet, Shadow or similar types of Characters. A bit of magic, a few Monsters, and a lot of Story.




    A.T
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  10. #30
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    Concept #8
    SuperHeros in Character


    The short Hollywood-style description of this Concept goes as follows:

    Marvel's Secret Wars meets D.C.'s Multiverse done in a modern Comic Movie style.

    What this means is that I want to take 5-7 Hero groups from different Time Periods and bring them together. Not in any place any of them have ever been. Not in a World that has had SuperHeros before.

    A place that barely even has SuperHero Comics much less actual MetaHumans.

    The Twist

    This is not exactly a big battle sort of Game. In fact it is intended to have a specific length run and then finish up. The bulk of the Story has to do with the interaction of the displaced SuperHeros. This would be a chance to get deeply into the mythos and motivations of people who put on costumes. It is the most RP-focused thing I have done in a long time.

    When the Heros first arrive they will have a place to hide out and get their bearings. They will quickly learn that not only has none of them ever been here before but they are far far away from anything they have known. The Mystics will not be able to invoke beings they normally can and opening a Portal home is impossible.

    So at first they will do a lot of covert Recon. With people like The Flash and Batman that will be fairly easy to accomplish. They will discover nothing that would require the awesome might that they represent. Sure there is Crime and War but nothing that begs for MetaHuman attention. They will find no clues as to why they are here whatsoever.

    Now what?

    That will be the question that will get a lot of different answers. The point of using people from different Time Periods is to bring very different points of view into the mix. Take a set of Golden Age Heros. To them you get out and help people no matter where you are or what is happening. That is what they do. In the original days people supported the Heros pretty blindly. Much as the US supported it's Government back in the WWII days.

    But consider a modern day Hero like Spider-Man. He has been outlawed, hunted, and had his identity revealed on TV. For him perhaps this would be a chance to take a break. He would want to get home like everybody else but if this World does not really need him why should he bother?

    Another layer comes from the limited Future people I would allow. Spider-Girl is Spider-Man's daughter who is born sometime around 2010 or so. She too becomes a Hero and does so because of her father. Imagine her confronting him over getting out and doing something.

    The Characters

    The Teams and when they are from would be pre-selected. Players would have 2 choices as to the types of people they wish to play. They can either select one of the members of the Teams or they can go for any Comic Character from any Time Period. The focus is on Marvel and D.C. but other publishers would probably be allowed as well. There would be no power restrictions at all. Superman, Flash, Thor, Dr. Strange, Orion, Iron Man, Spider-Man and more would be available for people to play.

    Who a Player picks to play will determine a little bit about how things will work. The plan is to have enough Characters in the groups to balance the Solo Characters. Votes will be taken on some key issues along the way (Like do we reveal ourselves to this World, that sort of thing). Groups will vote as a block with their Leader making the final decision. With say 6 groups of 6 each that is 36 votes. There might be as many as 20 Solo Characters. Simple majority will probably rule for most things.

    As an example...

    (1973)
    Lets say that is the Avengers that have been transported to this new Earth. The line-up is Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Black Panther, Vision and the Scarlet Witch.

    Justice Society, X-Men, Justice League and Teen Titans are all leading candidates for the groups. But there would be room for people like the Watchmen if there was specific interest.

    If a Player wanted to play one of those people they would be a part of that group. Groups would confront questions first and come to a decision. This would be heavily influenced by their Leader as is the tradition in Comics. Then when the Leader votes he does so will all the votes of his group. Some Leaders will be run by Staff and some by Players. But it is hard to find good Leaders so the balance is hard to guess. All the group Characters have to start with the personalities and attitudes of the time in question. They can, and should however evolve during the course of the Game.

    If on the other hand the Player wanted to play say QuickSilver, brother of Scarlet Witch and sometime Avenger he/she could play the Character from any Time Period they wished, before or after the group's time. This would allow for a more modern QuickSilver to interact with his past Sister and friends.

    The Plot so to speak

    This is still just a set of possibilities. Obviously someone or someones have sent the Heros to this place. But who that might be would be influenced first by the Storylines of the Groups in question and second by what would work well in this setting.

    What might be going on...

    1) By plucking all the Groups and Solos out of different Time Periods and from multiple Dimensions the Baddies are trying to create a self-sealing Change. Picture Time as a River. It begins in the West and flows to the East. 1970 is at one spot on the River. 1985 is at another downriver. By removing the Avengers at 1970 it starts a ripple in the River that heads for 1985. By ripple I mean all of what happens after that moment changes in some big ways. Then just as that ripple is about to reach 1985 the next group is plucked up. This has the effect of magnifying the ripple into an even bigger on.

    Do that 6-7 times, add in some side Dimensions to broaden the ripple, pull individuals out along the way to enhance the effect, and you end up with a massive, multi-layered wave of Change.

    2) The point of putting everybody on this strange Earth is to cut them off. Mages lose power, Tech-based people are restricted, information sources are lost, it adds up to quite a bit. The effective power of the group will drop rapidly. Some people, like say Superman, will remain as formidable as ever but others would be greatly effected. Iron Man would have to do a lot of work to be able to replace lost components for example.


    The Pace

    This is a 4 month Adventure. It has a specific ending although depending on what happens it could set the stage for more.

    1st Month: The Gathering

    Heros arrive and Recon. They debate. One month of dialogue with very limited action.

    Questions:
    Do we do anything beyond looking for the Big Bad or the way Home?
    What about escalation? What if we cause SuperVillains to emerge and then leave?
    Can we operate completely covertly? Could Magic make it possible?
    Do we stay here, where we were dropped, or find some other place?
    How do we live in this place? What will we do for food, money and the like?

    2nd Month: Making their way

    Depending on what is decided the Heros will start to act. Some people will have to be out in the World doing something. Even if the Vote says 'stay out of this world's affairs' there will be some who will not be able to obey. Some Heros will be driven to get out and do what they do. That will have consequences that could go a lot of different ways.

    3rd Month: Consequences

    By the time this month rolls around a lot will have happened. Perhaps the Heros will be fully public. Or maybe there will just be tons of stories and whispers. If you save people's lives they tend to notice and talk. The first real solid clues about the overall Storyline will finally emerge. The path to the final battle will begin take form.

    4th Month: The Reckoning

    Essentially one month long battle. Not just a fight of course there will be other things going on. With this many Characters there is a lot of potential for layers. With the power level of the people involved this will be a battle on a Cosmic sort of scale. Building up and doing this is part of the driving force behind the whole project.

    You see I am of the opinion that Comics do not really do justice to many of their Heros. It is understandable that if you have a Superman or a Thor on a Team you have to limit them a bit. If Superman were to use his real speed all the time most JLA stories would be very short. The same goes for the various Flashes and other SuperSpeeedsters. You can say 'well Superman is just letting everybody have a go'. Which I understand but if it were a real battle that would be a dangerous thing to do. People, even Super People, die in battles. So if I were Superman I would not hold back when it gets serious.

    This battle will be serious. It will take a fair amount of work to make it happen but it can be done.

    The Game System

    This is a Role Playing effort. A mix of FreeForm with some Rule support to add some randomness. What I am thinking is the absolute bare minimum numbers needed to support play. No complex Character sheets and fast easy Combat is the goal. Something along these lines might work:

    Power: 1-10
    Speed: 1-10
    Body: 1=10
    Combat: 1-10

    Power being Offense, Speed being movement and reactions, Body is durability and Combat would be combat skills and abilities. If you need a To hit you do

    50% + (Difference between Combat values * 10) = Chance of Success.

    The idea here is simply that the Stats cover pretty much everything. This is a far more abstract approach than use in a traditional RPG. The biggest plus to this approach is speed. Secondary Values would be limited to perhaps Hit Points which would be something like BODY times 20 or so. A BODY 5 Character would have 100 Hit Points.

    What makes this Concept interesting

    It is a limited Game focused on Character Interaction above Action. There is a huge range of potential Characters all with a full history. Players can choose the level of power they are interested in playing. The difference between playing a Superman and playing a Batman are pretty major.

    The groups will bring a whole range of attitudes into the discussions. This should make for a very dynamic and intense dialogue. What will the early Heros make of the ones from closer to today? Will they even all get along.

    People are going to die. This is not an automatic success sort of Story. Even under the best of conditions a fair percentage of the PCs may get killed. That is just not part of a normal Game.


    A.T
    (-)

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