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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 3:42 pm 
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Wild-Eyed Zealot

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the quest to come up with the right amount of money to customize a used Talon sounds like a great first adventure for the crew....


Quote:
putting the party in just enough money to live on and sometimes pay for an upgrade is a very slick trick for an episodic structure.


Greatest ideas yet. And nevermind first adventure Ken, that could take quite some time for the crew to find the cash, to find civilization, and then to find someone willing to deal with them and their (presumably spotty) reputation.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 3:58 pm 
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Laughingcarp wrote:
Quote:
the quest to come up with the right amount of money to customize a used Talon sounds like a great first adventure for the crew....


Quote:
putting the party in just enough money to live on and sometimes pay for an upgrade is a very slick trick for an episodic structure.


Greatest ideas yet. And nevermind first adventure Ken, that could take quite some time for the crew to find the cash, to find civilization, and then to find someone willing to deal with them and their (presumably spotty) reputation.


Ideally, you'd give them a break sometimes. But you could very easily break things down into several short adventures that don't directly relate to each other and have some overarching story going, and probably some recurring characters. For example, I can think of:

-Escort duty for a caravan

-Getting an important passenger to somewhere on time

-Patrol a contested border (you know: Explore, have a few fights, come back, that sort of thing)

-Locate ruins to be explored later, and then have to explore them (by leaving the mech outside) and have a pretty loot rich dungeon-crawl.

-They could even be sent to some certain ruins to find specific items.

-As they're exploring ruins, they come back to the mech to find someone stealing it, and have to chase after it.

-They have to find, but not engage, a bandit camp, so the authorities know where to look when they have time to break the bandits up.

-A monster attacks the city they're in, and they help kill it and get richly rewarded.

-Transporting cargo.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 2:40 pm 
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Wild-Eyed Zealot

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How about waiting for a big battle to blow over between, lets say, Stenian and Irontooth forces. When the main of the battle is over, time for the group to rush in and salvage anything they can, before the other forces can get their stuff together. Perhaps one of the clansmen has developed the first "radar" system, and everyone wants a piece? This is by necessity followed by a lenghty mech chase scene.

Can't forget smuggling!

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 9:39 pm 
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Yep, that would work. Or you could keep it within the setting as is by saying that Mal & Pals were part of a failed coup against the Stenian Confederacy a few years ago. In the current political landscape of Highpoint, there are plenty of opportunities for smugglers, scavengers, and other bold/desperate entrepreneurs.

Hmmm, you could even turn the Firefly concept completely on its head by slowly revealing to the players that the organizers of the failed yet noble coup were actually possessed by lunar skinstealers at the time, and were part of a massive attempt to destabilize the government. So, in retrospect, it would become a good thing that the coup failed! That would really mess with the crew's heads. :twisted:

--Ken

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 9:43 pm 
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Ken Hart wrote:
Yep, that would work. Or you could keep it within the setting as is by saying that Mal & Pals were part of a failed coup against the Stenian Confederacy a few years ago. In the current political landscape of Highpoint, there are plenty of opportunities for smugglers, scavengers, and other bold/desperate entrepreneurs.

Hmmm, you could even turn the Firefly concept completely on its head by slowly revealing to the players that the organizers of the failed yet noble coup were actually possessed by lunar skinstealers at the time, and were part of a massive attempt to destabilize the government. So, in retrospect, it would become a good thing that the coup failed! That would really mess with the crew's heads. :twisted:

--Ken



This is a bit off-topic, but out of all the lunar monsters, skinstealers intrigue me the most. They're sentient, and you can bargain with them. It may be interesting to have one be a recurring character. And maybe not an automatically evil one.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 8:35 pm 
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Love the skinstealers. They're a great contrast to the violence and chaos that's associated with the lunar rains and monsters like the lunar dragons. Players aren't expecting subtlety. When I ran my DragonMech game at Gen Con two years ago, the PCs cornered the dwarven "bad guy" and were shocked when a) their sword slice revealed grayish, bloodless flesh underneath and b) a Cthulhuian horror "poured" off the the target and leaped onto one of the PCs and dug its hooks in his flesh!

I dig the idea of an recurring skinstealer. And sure, why not have a skinstealer who's not onboard with the Master Plan? He could be roguish, looking to taste all the sensations denied his race on the cold moon, or even a moralistic one, appalled by what his race is doing to Highpoint.

Jumping back to Firefly, I kind of geeked out and worked up River's powers, feats, and artificial parts. :)

River Tam
Psion (seer) 3 / Steamborg 3 / Hissing Psiborg 4

Powers (ML 7th):

1st:
Call to Mind, Inertial Armor, Offensive Precognition, Precognition*, Skate, Vigor
-– I picked these to reflect her offense, defense, speed, and ability to pull ideas out of the air.

2nd:
Biofeedback, Detect Hostile Intent, Clairvoyant Sense*, Read Thoughts (from Expanded Knowledge feat), Sensitivity to Psychic Impressions*

3rd:
Body Adjustment, Escape Detection*, Ubiquitous Vision

4th:
Freedom of Movement, Psionic
-– I chose this because of the ability to easily escape grapples, which surely came in handy during the big Reaver fight in the movie!

* = Seer discipline.

Artificial parts +3:
Attack bonus +1, Damage bonus +2
-– Considering River’s slight build (even with obvious metal parts riveted on), this helps her pack more of a punch.

Feats:
1st: Psionic Body
1st (human bonus): Psionic Weapon
1st (psion bonus): Psionic Meditation
3rd: Combat Reflexes
6th: Expanded Knowledge (read thoughts)
9th: Deep Impact

--Ken

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Writer: "Madness at the Mutilated Oak," DCC #48: The Adventure Continues;
DCC #52: Chronicle of the Fiend

"It really is the height of pessimism to have a hat lined with chain mail." --Mrs. Peel


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 9:10 pm 
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Ken Hart wrote:

I dig the idea of an recurring skinstealer. And sure, why not have a skinstealer who's not onboard with the Master Plan? He could be roguish, looking to taste all the sensations denied his race on the cold moon, or even a moralistic one, appalled by what his race is doing to Highpoint.



--Ken


There's a Master Plan? Can you tell me or is that a company secret?

Hehe. Anyway, the skinstealer could be quite a useful person to know. Possibly even only taking a voluntary host and trying to give adventurers hints about what the Master Plan is. He/it may even be motivated by welfare for his own side, although in a sufficiently convoluted thing.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2008 12:45 am 
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River looks good, Ken. Never thought of Detect Hostile Intent, but that one really is perfect for her. Don't think Body Adjustment fits, though. How about Escape Detection?
And for her artificial parts, may I suggest either swapping one of the damage bonuses for the improvement to unarmed damage (increase to next higher die)? Or else use the feat in Steam Warriors that gives you an additional artificial part bonus.

Maybe I should actually bother reading the skinstealer's entry. Heh.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2008 1:04 am 
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Laughingcarp wrote:
River looks good, Ken. Never thought of Detect Hostile Intent, but that one really is perfect for her. Don't think Body Adjustment fits, though. How about Escape Detection?
And for her artificial parts, may I suggest either swapping one of the damage bonuses for the improvement to unarmed damage (increase to next higher die)? Or else use the feat in Steam Warriors that gives you an additional artificial part bonus.

Maybe I should actually bother reading the skinstealer's entry. Heh.


I'd recommend. To summarize, Skinstealers are great at grappling, subterfuge, and controlling someone they grapple onto, and they have 20 Int. They're used by Team Monster (::proud of himself for not making a Sailor Moon reference there::) to control important terrestrial people to further their cause. Out of all the lunar creatures, they're just about the only kind that'd have any inclination to talk to you.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2008 9:35 pm 
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Laughingcarp wrote:
River looks good, Ken. Never thought of Detect Hostile Intent, but that one really is perfect for her. Don't think Body Adjustment fits, though. How about Escape Detection?
And for her artificial parts, may I suggest either swapping one of the damage bonuses for the improvement to unarmed damage (increase to next higher die)? Or else use the feat in Steam Warriors that gives you an additional artificial part bonus.

Escape Detection is in her list already, but yeah, let's swap out Body Adjustment and put in Danger Sense.

Regarding her unarmed attacks, I originally thought along those lines (we've been on the same wavelength!), but I figured she has steel arms, which already allows her to whack folks for 1d6 base damage. What do you think?

For feats, I suppose we could ditch Deep Impact (I'm not sure how useful that is in melee, since you'd constantly need to regain focus) and give her the Artificial Part feat or -- maybe more in character -- the Under the Skin feat, also from Steam Warriors, that would make most of her parts hidden (aside from the smokestack in her back, natch).

--Ken

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DCC #52: Chronicle of the Fiend

"It really is the height of pessimism to have a hat lined with chain mail." --Mrs. Peel


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 2:48 pm 
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Wild-Eyed Zealot

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Heh. I completely missed that one! My bad.
But honestly, do you know any melee-oriented character who would be happy settling for 1d6 base damage? Haha I don't!

While I like deep impact, you may be right concerning re-focusing in melee. Completely forgot Under the Skin, which fits so perfectly (all I know from steam warriors comes from the online excerpt). Nice catch!

I was mulling Mal over in my head, and I'm more and more convinced you were right with anklebiter. Also, thinking of statting up Shepherd Book sometime soon.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 4:35 pm 
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Laughingcarp wrote:
Heh. I completely missed that one! My bad.
But honestly, do you know any melee-oriented character who would be happy settling for 1d6 base damage? Haha I don't!

While I like deep impact, you may be right concerning re-focusing in melee. Completely forgot Under the Skin, which fits so perfectly (all I know from steam warriors comes from the online excerpt). Nice catch!

I was mulling Mal over in my head, and I'm more and more convinced you were right with anklebiter. Also, thinking of statting up Shepherd Book sometime soon.


Speaking as someone who's played a character who used Deep Impact and dealt with psionic focus...

1) Unless you have Psionic Meditation, Deep Impact is going to be for your opening attack, so choose your target accordingly.
2) If you really wanted to make psionic focus reliably useful, you'd take Skill Focus (Concentration), Narrow Mind, and Psionic Meditation, and you'd pick one enemy, and keep following a routine of "Move Action to try to regain Psionic Focus" ----> Single attack for a ton of damage."

Max Ranks in Concentration + 4 (Narrow Mind) + 3 (Skill Focus) + whatever synergies you can come up with = You'll usually be making that DC 20.

If you're not going to spend feats to make Deep Impact one of the character's primary melee tricks, then I'd seriously consider looking for other things that feat could be spent upon.

Also, I suggest you make this assumption:

If a character who can gain psionic focus isn't hurried by anything in particular, then he or she takes the time to regain it.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 2:34 pm 
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I never really realized how intensive a psionic weapon style is, if done efficiently.

And I'm just getting through midterms, so I should be back in the game soon.

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 Post subject: Re: Dragonmech; Firefly?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2008 11:08 pm 
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Just watched Ariel and War Stories again. Ariel got me wondering, what would be the equivalent of the Core Planets?
Are Stenian City-Mechs the best bet?

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 Post subject: Re: Dragonmech; Firefly?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2008 6:56 am 
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Laughingcarp wrote:
Just watched Ariel and War Stories again. Ariel got me wondering, what would be the equivalent of the Core Planets?
Are Stenian City-Mechs the best bet?


The Stenian Confederacy has more city-mechs than any other, and they're the closest analogue to a typical fantasy "good guy" nation. They're what I would go with, unless I wanted to run something unusual (all-human Legion campaign, history-recovering L'arile campaign, etc.). You could make a case for expanding your "core planets" to include the Irontooth as well, since there is some Stenian/Irontooth crossover.

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 Post subject: Re: Dragonmech; Firefly?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2008 7:24 am 
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One of the weird little features about the new board software you may not have noticed is that when you look at someone's profile, it shows you their "most active topic" and what percentage of their total posts were made in that topic.

Laughingcarp: Most active topic: Dragonmech; Firefly?
[ 16 Posts / 34.04% of user’s posts ]

Ken Hart: Most active topic: Dragonmech; Firefly?
[ 12 Posts / 7.32% of user’s posts ]

You guys are going to become known as the "Dragonmech/Firefly" guys if you're not careful. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Dragonmech; Firefly?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2008 1:32 am 
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Sweet :D
Nothing wrong being associated with the greatest show ever created!

No way am I going to lump the Irontooth clans in with the Stenians! IMO, at least as far as it makes sense in my head, it works something like this;

Stenian Confederacy = the Alliance, all rules and order carried out with an iron fist (pun absolutely intended) The benefit of this control is that it works. A general level of safety is present, and law-abiding citizens flourish as civilization starts to return. I see this as basically being the core planets under Alliance authority.

Irontooth Clans are the various groups that are managing well enough on their own, free from outside control. Shepherd Book's outpost is an example.

Rust Riders are your generic outcast bandit rabble. Not much is seen of this type in the show, but it is evident they're there. Jayne's buddies (Out of Gas) are the prime example.

The tiny Mech Tribes are the various groups of settlers, abandoned by all others on their lonesome planets and forced to fend for themselves. The mining community in Train Job.

The Legion ?=? Outer Planets. Represents the struggling rise of the more successful outer planets, such as Patience on Whitefall. The Legion is a little militant for this to work, but it is late and kinda makes sense. So sue me.
(On an off note, Shar Thizdic is Genghis Khan)

Orcs = Reavers. This one is easy

Your thoughts? How would the L'arile Nation fit into Firefly? Who were the browncoats? (The legion?)
And of course, feel free to rip as much of this up as you want.

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 Post subject: Re: Dragonmech; Firefly?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 19, 2008 8:33 pm 
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mythfish wrote:
You guys are going to become known as the "Dragonmech/Firefly" guys if you're not careful. :)

Hey, I'm cool with that, also! And I'm a recent Firefly fan, too. I didn't get around to view the entire series until a couple of months ago, thanks to the glories of Netflix.

Laughingcarp, I like the comparisons, although I wouldn't associate the Legion with the browncoats. I'd say that the rebels were members of the Stenian Confederacy who got sick of the oppression, fought back, and lost. So where to go next? The Legion offers some opportunities, but for every well-meaning patriot in the area, there's a vicious fiend like Adelei Niska. Sometimes it's safer to stay closer to home.

As for L'arile Nation, hmmm.... yeah, there's no easy equivalent. I'd just say they were a neutral party during the Stenian civil war.

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DCC #52: Chronicle of the Fiend

"It really is the height of pessimism to have a hat lined with chain mail." --Mrs. Peel


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