Monday, December 30, 2013

4 NPC's for the end of the world

Dawn of the Days of the Restless, Walking Dead

I'm currently awash in research that I'm hoping will help me run a Savage Worlds "the end is happening right the heck now" game of surviving in an urban environment while the dead return to life and civilization melts down.

So here are some Extras for use in your modern-ish PA setting. Three are "pulled" using the Zombie Run "cast of thousands" table, which is a lot like the SWEX NPC generator that used to be in the Explorer's Edition...and their starting gear is drawn from the Zombie Run and Hell on Earth scavenging tables...just to kick the tires on those tables, and redistributed in a sensible manner. The final Extra is more of a plot/quest generator that I just got the idea for based on my read of a contributing writer for a "prepper" website which Im finding to be great reading / entertainment.

Alec, Nate, and Sophia
These three are a little survival band to encounter early, either out scavenging or holed up in a place your PC's want to break into and loot.

Alec is: dirty, blue eyed, 20-ish, and bearded
Used to be: WRITER (local graffiti culture)
Loves: Cats (demonstrated by the cat with mustache and monocle on his t-shirt)
Carries: Aluminum softball bat (d6+d4); 1 flash-bang grenade (stun power)
Knows: a cache of 2d20 meals and 3d12 Liters clean water

Nate is: doughy, black-eyed, 50-ish, with steel gray hair
Used to be: ENGINEER (public works)
Loves: Conversation (the end of the world has killed a good talk over beers)
Carries: Large crowbar (d6+d4); 1 flash-bang grenade (stun power); 5 pints fuel
Knows: how to travel more quietly using the public utilities systems

Sophia is: tall, large-eyed, 50-ish with straight hair
Used to be: ENTREPRENEUR (start ups are her specialty)
Loves: Math (running the numbers brings her real satisfaction)
Carries: AR-15 (Use M16 Stats) +1 to Intimidation / 4 rounds left
Knows: how to organize and delegate to medium size groups of people

Goods held in common / up for barter:
25 rounds of .50 cal, 15 crossbow bolts, a case of 24 sodas, 9 extra meals

Captain Bart
This is a character with real potential:
But I see him as an etherial, ham-radio operating presence that relays possibly useful information. A kind of "Three-Dog" character with a survivalist / prep-er bent.

Bart is: a ghostly voice on the radio, 60-ish, 
Loves: preparedness and ham radio
Carries: Colt Commander (2d6+1)
Knows: that he's "too old" to "bug out" but hopes that he can still help people over the radio from his secret "bug in" location

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Unbirthday Week:

I turned 35, and decided I'd give YOU a present. Maybe more if there's time over my little holiday...

Goblin Patches and their perils:
The light of civilization doesn't reach far in a wild, hard-scrabble fantasy world. At the dim, grey edges of organized sapient culture, there exists a twilight realm of unconscious fear and anxiety where fears take living shape and begin to colonize.

Goblin Patches are an aggressive fungus that can begin anywhere the refuse of civilization can be found...sewers, garbage piles, latrines...whatever you like. These patches produce a mess of plant goblins (read +James Young 's idea below). Use your favorite stats, and number of appearing stats.

Older patches may produce goblins with specialized functions, and higher HD or wounds. Low HD or non Wild Card "goblins" either explode when taken down (+Jack Shear 's idea below) or have a 2 in 6 chance if you're feeling nice. Large patches might inhabit entire sections of wilderness or dungeon and co-opt other boring encounter-type monsters making them fun again...(giant ant with a mushroom growing from its head anyone?)

Possible weaknesses to exploit:
Salt (or other common thing like Vinegar)

Evidence of possible problem:
Missing pets (or other vulnerable targets)
goopy-exploded slime where exploratory goblins have died errupted
someone turns up with a gross patch of skin after being "bitten"
another type of low-power monster turns up, with fungus sprouting from skull...

Possible complications:
explod-y goblins are spore-spreaders helping the patch expand...
fungus is also magical and therefore can't be starved out without some kind of arcane component (it feeds on FEAR I tell you!)
growth has a rapid "infection" rate in certain monsters or terrains
it never really "dies" until you destroy the progenitor growth spore (queen, CPU, mother-brain what have you)

Foundations of this idea: