Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Arcane Background: Totem Lords

Hey folks,
It’s been a while and I apologize for that. With the new year and nature of my job, I’ve been busy.
Still, those who follow my blog deserve some content and as such I’m going to show my notes related to an arcane background I’ve been kicking around.
This one isn’t for the Drowned War, but rather a different project I’ll be taking on after DW is complete.

So with that, I give you Totem Lords.

Totem Lords are techno idolaters, by patching into the ambient quantum fields a Totem Lord can perform Miracles.

There is a catch, this quantum manipulation has a draining effect on nearby life. Thus us of this power is exhausting and if a Totem Lord pushes too far into the probability field he’ll drain away his very soul.

Mechanically speaking
  • The Totem Lord crafts a techno idol. This idol grants the Arcane Background Miracles and allows the players to take 1 starting power (ignoring rank)  related to the AB: Miracles background. They begin play with 15 power points.
  • The Totem Lord can take any edge related to AB:Miracles, and can also select the Wizard edge.
  • The totem is required to cast; If lost or stolen the Totem Lord builds another in 2d6 days.
  • On a roll of 1 of the trait die (regardless of the wild die) the caster takes a level of fatigue. On a critical failure, the caster takes 2 levels. Fatigue can only be recovered by an hour of rest per level of fatigue.

There’s more, the Totem Lord can burn the energy from their own soul to cast.
The Soul rating is half the character’s Spirit die plus 2.
For example, if the player has a d6 in Spirit he would have a soul rating of 5.
A soul point can be spent to add an extra  d6 die to any roll, and the only limit is how many points the player has to spend.
The player with 5 soul points could spend all 5 and gain +5d6 if he chose too.
However, once all the characters soul points are spent, they die.
The points do not refresh and cannot normally be regained.

So, Totem Lords have the to potential to be very powerful, but must be careful with their how much of that power they use.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Drowned War #6: sample of Poly Forms

It's been a while, I've been working on collecting and developing the Beastiary for the Drowned War.
This month I'll be selecting a few samplings of creatures: Poly Forms.

A Ploy Form is a mutant that has been exposed to copious amounts of the genetic soup, because of this their mutation has become unstable. Most Poly Forms are androgynous and have a light pink skin tone.

Poly Forms
These mutants appear humanoid with pink taffy-like skin. Driven by hunger they seek to consume the biomass of dead creatures and add it to their own.

Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d4(A), Spirit d4, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Fighting d6, Intimidation d6, Notice d4, Shooting d6

Pace: 4; Parry: 5; Toughness: 7

Special Abilities* Androgynous: Poly Forms appear humanoid, but with no discernible gender
* Biomass: when a Poly Form makes a successful grapple attack they can consume the mass of their target. Each round thereafter the hold is maintained inflicts Str+6 damage. Once incapacitated the PolyForm consumes the target and adds +1 Size and pace along with one die in strength and vigor. Poly Forms can consume 6 targets and have a maximum strength and vigor d12+2, Size +6, Toughness 13, pace 10
* Claws: Str+d4.
* Creature parts: Poly Forms may ingest body parts from other creatures gain one of their special abilities as the GM sees fit.
* Fear: Poly Morphs induce a fear check at -2.
* Fearless (sort of): Poly Morphs are only afraid of fire. When harmed by a fire-based attack Polyforms must make a spirit check to resist retreating.
*Feral: Animal intelligence survives on instinct
* Gelantious Form: Normal weapons do half damage except weakness
* Mutant: same as Undead monstrous ability Savage Worlds Deluxe, except can be affected by poison disease and drowning
*Sluggish: in a deprived state Poly Forms are slow, but gain quickness as they consume more biomass
* Weakness (Fire): Fire based attacks cause normal damage.

Poly Swarm
Sometimes a Poly Form manages to ingest a rat or insect farm, in these cases the PolyForm is already at its max state. Ingesting these creatures changes the mindset of the polyform and makes them hyper-aggressive. They look humanoid with pink skin, but where the head should be is a mass of several rats faces all with sharp teeth

Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d4(A), Spirit d4, Strength d12+2, Vigor d12+2
Skills: Fighting d6, Intimidation d6, Notice d4, Shooting d6

Pace: 10; Parry: 5; Toughness: 14

Special Abilities* Androgynous: Poly Swarms appear humanoid, but with no discernible gender
* Bite / Claws: Str+d6.
* Fear: Poly Swarms induce a fear check at -4.
* Fearless (sort of): Poly Swarms are only afraid of fire. When harmed by a fire-based attack Poly Swarm must make a spirit check to resist retreating.
*Feral: Animal intelligence survives on instinct
*Rat Heads: Poly Swarms have both the improved First strike and Improved Frenzy edges.
* Mutant: same as Undead monstrous ability Savage Worlds Deluxe, except can be affected by poison disease and drowning
* Gelantious Form: Normal weapons do half damage except weakness
*Size: +6

* Weakness (Fire): Fire based attacks cause normal damage.

The Rubber Man (WC)
A living nightmare, the Rubber man has a pliable body that allows him to hide in very tight spaces. The Rubber man stalks his prey, hides under the bed, in the closet, or even on the ceiling. Because he has a taste for inducing fear he has been known to whisper or snicker while alone in the room with his prey. The Rubber man is a humanoid with pink skin stretched taut over his body, a disjointed jaw that hangs loose creating an oversized mouth and an eye melted shut while the other is stretched and nearly popping from his skull.

Attributes: Agility d10, Smarts d6, Spirit d6, Strength d10, Vigor d10

Skills: Climbing d10, Fighting d10, Lockpicking d6, Notice d8, Stealth d10, Taunt d6

Cha: -4; Pace: 10; Parry: 7; Toughness: 7

Hindrances: Bloodthirsty, Quirk (whispers or laughs from his hiding place)
Edges: Assassin, Fleet-footed, Improved Sweep, Thief, Woodsman

Special Abilities
* Bite: Str+d6.
*Hyper-Flexibility: The Rubber man gets his name due to his ability to contort his body in unusual ways. He is able to deflate, twist, and stretch himself at will. This allows him to slide through pipes, under doors, and through large enough cracks when the need presents itself.
*Semi-Feral: -2 Charisma, retains only the smallest amount humanity and survive on instinct
*Stretch and Leap: The Rubber man can elongate his arms and legs allowing him to make Melee attacks at +1 reach, and leap 1” up (works with wall walker)
*Wall Walker: See Savage Worlds Deluxe

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The Drowned War #5: History of the Anthropocene, World Navy, and Flotillas

Before the Disaster

The world of the Drowned War takes place in a wet, oil covered future.
Desperate men and women scavenge for parts, search for dry land, and avoid genetic mutations while attempting to survive a planet regressed into primordial savagery.

History of the Anthropocene

Post 20th century the Corporate powers (mega corporations with incredible power) were able to utilize their economic influence and overthrow several governments.
A period know as the "Corporate Wars" saw the Corporate Powers gradually sweep independent states under the rug and make way for a Unified Nation.

The Corporate Powers erased borders, established global trade, diluted organized religions, and instituted a one world government.

Society progressed as new technology became available, but an increase in population and environmental changes were taking their toll on the world. A slow, methodical flooding of the Earth dubbed 'The Anthropocene' was occurring. The Unified Nation initially denied the existence of the Anthropocene, but as more and land was claimed by the seas the Corporate Powers were forced to acknowledge the inevitable loss of all dry land.
Massive Earthquakes shifted coastlines, sank mountains and washed away islands in Tsunamis. The Unified Nation began work to ensure humanity -or at least it's masters- would survive The Anthropocene.

The World Navy

As land became scarce The Unified Nation consolidated Earth's military forces and re-purposed them for aquatic research and Naval operations. 
It took decades, but the World Navy was born.
While an intimidating military force, the World Naval was also dedicated to research and exploration as much as conflict. 
Scientist with the World Navy's Project 7 Helix were responsible for creating the genetic modification serums or genetic soup as it had been come known. This substance is capable of altering the genetic codes of those exposed to it. Slightly radioactive the soup was responsible for mutations and "adaptive" projects that would allow humans to survive in varied ecological conditions. 
While Project 7 Helix unlocked the human genetic code and devised organic experiments another organization tackled the daunting task of sheltering the human population.


As land became more scarce the Corporate Powers reorganized several different contractors and development companies. The newly formed Atlas Applications was given an unlimited expense account by the Unified Nation. Tasked with developing sustainable synthetic islands Atlas developed modular flotillas. 
Coming in a wide varieties of sizes from personal pods to floating city blocks the advanced flotillas were designed to be self sustaining ecosystems. 
Unfortunately, while gigantic in size, flotilla cities were not large enough to accommodate the worlds population. 
Wealthy and middle classed citizens were welcomed, but the poor and unskilled were banned from most flotilla cities. 
Forced to make due outside of these floating jewels survivors began constructing their own environments from whatever they could scrap together, these junk flotillas litter the seascape like bobbing junkyards.
As water levels rose and resources became harder to locate disputes between flotilla cities became aggressive, the Corporate Powers split and dissolved into respective city councils.
The two largest cites, Oceania and Pacifica, were able to maintain relative peace during this time, until a terror attack by a doomsday cult damaged Pacifica's genetic soup reserves.
The mutagen leaked into the surrounding area and caused flora and fauna to wrap into horrific creatures. Pacifica's leaders refused to believe the attack was the result of religious zealot's and used the attack as a justification for war with Oceania. 
With the many dangers now present on the Earth, the remnants of the human race are drowning in war.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Video: AetherCon V - Hammers & Nails: What Goes into a Good Town

Some of you may know we have an ongoing relationship with the Aethercon online convention.
Attached is a video with our very own Craig Goad as he interviews John Bennett, James Gantry, and Richard Green.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Drowned War #4: Bone Fishers

In any setting, especially war settings, there has to be a flavor of human savagery. Boogie men that raid and ravage settlements before dragging regular people off to horrible fates. In the Drowned War, that role is filled by The Bone Fishers.

Bone Fishers

The Bone Fishers is a tribe of cannibalistic hunters and wild men. When the Anthropocene occurred society fell apart. Food, shelter, and basic amenities were impossible to come by, and with several people shoved into whatever dry space they could find; it was only a matter of time before the ruthless began to consume the weak.

Bone Fishers gain their name from the weapons and armor they employ, made from the bones of their victims, either as fragments or ground down and made into a cement. Known as skilled hunters and trackers, Bone Fisher's raid settlements and stalk squads of soldiers. Once they've subdued their victims they drag them to their camps to be used as food and materials.

Bone Fisher Tracker
These hunters stalk their prey and pick them off from the tree tops and shadows. Their leather armor with bone fragments is often covered in mud and grass to form a natural camouflage.
Attributes: Agility d8, Smarts d6, Spirit d8, Strength d8, Vigor d8
Skills: Climbing d6, Fighting d6, Notice d8, Riding d6, Shooting d10, Stealth d10, Survival d8, Tracking d10, Throwing d6
Charisma: -2; Pace: 6; Parry: 5; Toughness: 8(2)

Hindrances: Outsider (cannibals)
Edges: Assassin, Marksman, Woodsman
Gear: Bone bow, bone knife, Leather armor with hood.

Bone Fisher Brute
These brutal madmen like to get up close and personal with their prey. Brutes have been known to charge riflemen and even machine gun nest with the intention of bashing their targets skull in. Brutes that act as wild cards cover their bone armor in red smears.
Attributes: Agility d10, Smarts d6, Spirit d8, Strength d10, Vigor d10
Skills: Climbing d8, Fighting d12, Intimidation d10, Notice d6, Stealth d6, Throwing d10
Charisma: -4; Pace: 8; Parry: 8; Toughness: 9(2)

Hindrances: Bloodthirsty, Outsider (cannibals)
Edges: Combat Reflexes, First Strike, Fleet Footed, Improved Dodge, Improved Nerves of Steel (when a wild card), Sweep.
Gear: Bone armor, skull helmet, bone club

Bone Fisher Wrangler (WC)
Masters of animal husbandry and mild psychics these tribesmen can somehow calm the wild animals around the and use their talents in battle.
Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d10, Spirit d6, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Fighting d6, Intimidation d6, Healing d10, Knowledge (biology) d6, Notice d8, Psionics d10, Riding d8, Stealth d8, Survival d6, Swimming d8, Throwing d6, Tracking d8
Charisma: -2; Pace: 6; Parry: 6; Toughness: 5

Hindrances: Outsider (cannibals)
Edges: Arcane Background Psionics (Beast friend only), Beast Bond, Beast Master, Healer
Gear: Bone Knife, Whip, Animal companions such as a dog or mount
PP: 10

Bone Fisher Chief (WC)
These war chiefs are the brains of open combat. Not the strongest or the fastest, but usually the smartest.
Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d10, Spirit d8, Strength d6, Vigor d8
Skills: Fighting d6, Intimidation d10, Knowledge Battle d10, Notice d6, Persuasion d10, Shooting d8, Taunt d8
Charisma: 0; Pace: 6; Parry: 5; Toughness: 7

Hindrances: Bloodthirsty, Vengeful (Major when the tribe is threatened)
Edges: Charismatic, Command, Command Presence, Hold the Line, Strong Willed, Tactician
Gear: Robes, staff, antler crown.

Monday, January 9, 2017

The Drowned War #3: Slurpers

And the war continues. 
In this installment, we check out one of the most frightening monsters in The Drowned War, Slurpers.

Thanks to solar radiation and leaked genetic soup a genus of simple parasites have become a new race of walking dead. Starting off as small worms these creatures spread and consume the host's organs, they lift the bones and loose skin up and lurch around as horrific marionettes.
Slurpers gain their name from their primary weapon, an extra long tentacle that extends from the host's mouth and implants eggs into victims.
Slurpers are ambush predators, lying in wait for their victims. They get the drop on their targets by hiding in debris filled marshes or laying among heaps of dead bodies. Unsuspecting travelers should be wary of any odd mud pile or prostrate body, less they become the next carrier.


Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d4(A), Spirit d4, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Fighting d6, Notice d4, Stealth d6

Pace: 4; Parry: 5; Toughness: 7
Gear: Varies by carrier
Special Abilities
-Fear -2: People are terrified of these things.
-Fearless: Slurpers aren't smart enough to be afraid of things they should.
-Infection: Characters hit by a tongue lash require a vigor roll at -2 to prevent the Slurper from laying eggs in the wound. If infected a healing roll within one hour (or amputation if the wound is a limb) is required to prevent death and resurrection.
-Lame: Turns out a worm in a people suit can't move at a good clip.
-Tongue lash: Str+d6, reach 1, a chance of infection.
-Weakness Fire: Slurpers take +2 damage from fire-based attacks.

The Drowned War #2: Mermaids

Sorry Folks, it's been a while.
Returning to the Drowned War this month's entry is a remnant of the World Navy, Mermaids. With advancements in the study of genetics, Military scientist discovered a method of creating a terrifying strike force by combining elite soldiers with Apex predators. 


Mermaids were first created by combining genetic shark soup with hand picked Naval and Marine soldiers. After several failed attempts (and horribly mutated corpses) it was discovered the male genome was incompatible with the Shark soup, but the female DNA was a perfect fit. Soon the oceans were filled with half shark half woman soldiers. Housed within their underwater bases these elite teams protected the coasts and explored the depths.

Unfortunately, when the World Navy fell apart in the Anthropocene the Mermaids lost contact with command. Now several years into the Drowned War they live within their flooded derelict bases, humanity lost.

With no males as part of their species mermaids venture to the surface intent of finding men to be used for breeding. These poor souls are dragged underwater and used to repopulate the mermaid ranks.

Mermaid bases are filled with treasure and horror; weapon caches and vehicles, but also floating half eaten bodies stored in nooks and crannies.

Mermaid Grunt (Normally 4 in a Squad)
Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d4, Spirit d6, Strength d6, Vigor d6
Skills: Fighting d6, Notice d6, Shooting d6, Stealth d4, Swimming d6

Charisma: -4; Pace: 6; Parry: 5; Toughness: 7
Gear: Combat wet-suit, Spear-gun (use crossbow from deluxe)
Special Abilities
- Aquatic: Swimming d6, Pace 6.
-Biological Imperative: Mermaids are bloodthirsty and territorial, they will attempt to kill female opponents and kidnap male opponents for mating purposes (unless aquatic, they are drowned in the process)
-Bite/Claws: Str+d6.
-Infra-vision: (While underwater)
-Mutant: (same as Construct or Undead, but add Outsider hindrance)

Mermaid Squad Leader (WC)
Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d6, Spirit d6, Strength d8, Vigor d8
Skills: Fighting d8, Notice d8, Shooting d8, Stealth d6, Swimming d8

Charisma: -4; Pace: 8; Parry: 6; Toughness: 10(2)
Gear: Combat wet-suit, Spear-gun (use crossbow from deluxe)
Edges: Fleet-footed (applies to swimming as well), Command
Special Abilities
-Armor +2: Thick skin.
-Aquatic: Swimming d6, Pace 10.
-Biological Imperative: Mermaids are bloodthirsty and territorial, they will attempt to kill female opponents and kidnap male opponents for mating purposes (unless aquatic they are drowned in the process)
-Bite/Claws: Str+d6.
-Infra-vision: (While underwater)
-Mutant: (same as Construct or Undead, but add Outsider hindrance)