Sunday, February 16, 2014

[Numenera] Hlosh

HLOSH  2 (6)

These ultraterrestrial creatures appear as a pinkish blob that has a large red circular region on it's body that is most likely an eye.   Thet stand about 2.5 meters tall.  The Hlosh are surrounded by a tough but pliable transparent membrane that protects them from harm. This membrane allows the creature to extend it's 3 manipulator appendages and 4 locomotive appendages in order to interact and move with the outside environment. It is believed that membrane is some kind of bio-organic encounter suit which is under pressure with the native atmosphere that keeps the Hlosh alive. These alien creatures are usually encountered in ruins where they are found exploring. They sometimes capture other creatures for study. They usually carry strange alien devices and weapons to protect themselves.

Motive:  Exploration
Environment: Small parties of explorers found near ruins.
Health: 6
Damage Inflicted: 4 points
Armor: 4
Movement: Short
Modifications: Level 5 with Numenera
Combat:  Hlosh will usually only attack if they feel threatened.  If they are reduced to 2 health, it means that the structure of their membrane has been compromised.  At that point they will withdraw all appendages within their membrane and will dimensionally phase out of the physical world, back to their home dimension.  While in their home dimension they can regenerate from their wounds a 2 points of damage per round.  Once they are back to full health, their membrane is repaired.  If brought to 0 health, the membrane ruptures and the Hlosh begins to rapidly decompose as if exposed to a corrosive atmosphere.
Interaction:  The Hlosh are intelligent, but being aliens they do not understand the language of the Ninth World.  Their agenda is unknown but they seem interested in the technology found in ancient ruins.  They are curious of other life-forms and if they can overpower a creature safely, they will do so in order to study it for a period of time before going on their way.
Loot: Hlosh will usually have 1d6+2 cyphers with them that they have found in nearby ruins or taken from sentient subjects they captured for study.

Friday, February 14, 2014

[Numenera] Man Catcher

MAN CATCHER 3 (9)                                       

Man Catchers are large insect-like creatures about 1 metal tall and 2 meters long.  They are covered in a hard chitin.  They have a prominent set of large pincher-like mandibles on their head which they use to grab prey and crush them.  They also have a smaller set of pinchers attached to the back of their abdomen which is flexible, allowing it to make strikes against any prey grabbed by the large mandibles.  The Man Catcher has two stalks that grow out of each side of it's head that end in a cluster of ocular sensory organs.  This allows it to see in all directions at all times.  They are usually encountered in small groups of two to four that are on the hunt for prey.

Motive:  Hungers for flesh.
Environment: Any wooded area or jungles.
Health: 9
Damage Inflicted: 4 (Large mandible), 3 (tail pincher)
Armor: 2
Movement: Short
Modifications: Climb as level 4
Combat: When a Man Catcher successfully attacks a character with it's large mandible, he must make a Might defense roll to avoid being held fast by the crushing mandibles.  Anyone held by the mandibles automatically take damage each round.  Any physical actions the captured target attempts will be increased by one step.  The Man Catcher also gets to attack any held prey with its tail pincher at Level 5.  Attempting to break out of the hold takes an action which requites a Might-based roll.
Interaction:  Man Catchers are predatory animals. 
Use: Some local communities consider Man Catchers a tasty delicacy.  Though very dangerous to hunt or catch, they are usually roasted over an open fire and their shells cracked open and the juicy and cooked insides are eaten.  Some merchants are willing to pay several shins for each Man Catcher brought to them dead or alive, but preferably dead.

GM Intrusion: Several Man Catchers gang up on one PC in order to bring down their prey quickly.  If the character is grabbed by any of the large mandibles and does not break free, the group begin dragging the PC away in order to eat their meal.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

[Numenera] Krthateli


Krthateli are transdimensional aliens that make raids to capture humans as slaves for physical labor.  They appear octopoidal with an over-sized head dominated by a single large eye.  Their small torso and large head are supported by four tentacles used for mobility.  They have several manipulator tentacles that sprout from their small torso and sides of their head.  They have a mouth-slit in which they ingest food, but they do not communicate verbally.  They wield a variety of weapons and numenera devices.  Krthateli stand approximately 2 meters.

Motive: Capture slaves.
Environment: Anywhere, usually in groups of two to eight.
Health: 12
Damage Inflicted: 4
Armor: 0
Movement: Short
Modifications: Might defense as level 2, Perception as level 5, Understands the numenera as level 6, level 5 in any defense rolls involving cold attacks.
Combat:  Krthateli are usually armed with numenera weapons, most notably the Stun Rod.  A hit with this device is defended by a Speed defense roll.  If struck by the cold, blue beam, the target must succeed in a level 6 Might roll or fall unconcious for an hour.  The Krthateli also have several psionic abilities, which only affect organic targets that have brains.  These do not affect automatons:
1) Mental Illusions.  Can create mental projections that appear real.  A target of these illusions must make a Level 6 Intellect defense roll, or believe the illusions to be real.
2) Invisibility.  The Krthateli can bend light around them to make themselves invisible.  Any attacks made against them are at Level 6.  If they attack, they lose their invisibility that turn.
3) Cause Fear: The Krthateli can telepathically probe a target's fear centers in the brain and can induce severe panic.  The target must make a level 5 Intellect defense roll or flee in a panic for 1d6 minutes.
Interaction:  Krthateli are highly intelligent.  They communicate by telepathy.  They do not have a high regard for humans, whom they equate more as work animals.
Use: A local community has had several of their number abducted by a group of Krthateli which have taken them to nearby ruins as slave labor to clear out rubble so that the Krthateli can get access to something within.
Loot: Stun Rod artifact device (depletion 1 in 1d10), range 6 meters.  1d6 cyphers.

GM Intrusion:  Invisible Krthateli suddenly appear as they attack the character..

[Numenera]: Doarg

I haven't posted anything since September 2013, mostly due to a lack of projects to write about, plus most of my online activity has been in the form of commenting on G+.  I recently ordered the new Numenera: Ninth World Bestiary which arrived yesterday and I spent the previous evening reading through it.

I mentioned in my last post that I thought Numenera would be an ideal game system to for the Xhuul setting.  More specifically, Xhuul would need some tweaking and just place it somewhere in the Ninth World of Numenera.  So, I plan on making future posts in this regard.

I thought it might be interesting to look over some of the monsters I made and translate them for use with Numenera.

DOARG      6 (18)
A large (20' at the head) hoofed quadraped with bovine features.  It is covered in a thick coat of green fur.  It had sharp teeth and large tusks.  It is a predator that roams the forested regions of the Ninth World.  It is aggressive and is usually on the hunt for food.  The green coloring of it's fur helps to conceal it before it attacks from dense underbrush.

Motive: Hunger for flesh. 
Environment: Doargs live in temperate forests and are found in groups numbering two to four.
Health: 18
Damage Inflicted: 6 points
Armor: 0
Movement: Short
Modifications:  Speed defense is 5 due to it's size. Hides in Forested terrain as a Level 7.
Combat: The Doarg gores it's foes or prey with it's sharp tusks.  It hides in thick underbrush ready to ambush creatures in order to feed.
Interaction:  Doargs are animal predators and cannot be reasoned with.
Use: These are very dangerous predators and when encountered in a large group can spell trouble.  Fortunately, because of their large size, their presence can be betrayed by means of their passage due to trampled foilage and broken branches.  They are good for surprise attacks.
Loot: Any loot found near a Doarg would be coincidental from a prior victim(s).  Maybe 1d6 shins and a cypher.

GM Intrusion: The Doarg charges from cover and automatically surprises the character, inflicting damage and knocking him prone.

Friday, September 6, 2013


I purchased the Numenera Role-playing game by Monte Cook and have been slowly reading through it.  This isn't really a review of the game but I find it to be an easy game to learn and it doesn't get bogged down in a bunch of crunchy or fiddly rules like most modern RPGs do these days.  The core rule book is a hefty 400+ pages, but the rules mechanics including optional rules are only 30 pages.  The rest cover character creation, equipment, game setting, and the bizarre technology called Numenera.

There are only 3 stats in the game, Might, Speed and Intellect.  There are 3 "character classes", the Glaive (warrior-type), Nano (wizard-type) and Jack (a kind of rogue-type class with some abilities from the Glaive and Nano, plus their own tricks.)  There is only one race, human.  There are optional rules to play 2 alien-type races and also to play mutants.

Each character type starts with a set value in each of their stats, and you get 6 additional points to divide up among your stats.  Each character chooses a Descriptor that defines the character even more (for example, Strong, or Charming, or Rugged) with bonuses to stats, skills, contacts, some hinderances and additional equipment.  Then each character chooses a Focus, which is something that makes your character unique.  These have some pretty gonzo powers associated with them, such as Bears a Halo of Fire, or Controls Gravity.

Characters advance and improve by earning XP to get to the next Tier (level) by purchasing four character benefits each of which cost 4XP. The benefits are: Increasing Capabilities (allocate 4 points among your stat pools), Moving Towards Perfection (add 1 to your Might Edge, Speed Edge or Intellect Edge.  Edge is a value that decreases the cost of points spent from pools to do certain actions or use powers), Extra Effort (increase Effort score by 1.  Effort allows you to reduce the difficulty of tasks by sending points from the pool associated with the task.) and Skills (allows you to become trained in a skill of your choice.  If you are already trained in a skill, you may become specialized in it.).  Once you advance to the next Tier, it opens up more options for your character to select new abilities and powers, in which to customize your character.

XP is earned by exploring places and discovering new things, not fighting monsters.  I think that right there is very telling of the kind of game this is supposed to be.  I'm sure people will quickly learn that if you can avoid a fight, you will be better off.  It's kind of like OD&D where XP was rewarded by treasure and not killing monsters.

And combat in this game can get real nasty.  Since your 'Hit Points' are directly tied to your stat pools, this becomes a resource you have to manage wisely.  The same pools that you spend points from to make attacks are the same that take damage when you get injured.  Once a pool is depleted to zero, you become Impaired and start taking penalties, when 2 pools are reduced to zero you are Debilitated and may not take any actions other than move.  If your Speed pool is zero, you may not move.  Once all Stat pools are reduced to zero, the character is Dead.

I have only just started to reading the setting information, which is called the Ninth World.  The game takes place on Earth a billion years from now.  In the span of that time, there have been 8 previous civilizations that have risen and fallen.  Not all of these civilizations were of human origin and the the big mystery is what happened to the humans during this time and how they returned in the Ninth World.  Nothing is known about these previous civilizations but their mark and existence is clearly evident in the world today by the remnants of their civilization in the form of the Numenera, the powerful alien technological artifacts left behind.

Reading this book has made me think about reviving my Weirdlands of Xhuul setting as being part of the Ninth World in a remote location in a region known as The Beyond.  The setting is wide open for GM's to make up their own stuff.  On the world map, there are map symbols for locations of towns, cities, ruins that are not labelled, so that GMs can detail those as they see fit.

This game might even serve as a game engine for even a Gamma World game quite easily.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Pathfinder campaign on life support

It's been a while since I've posted anything to the blog.  Not much as been happening.

I managed to pick   up a new player for the Pathfinder game, but his work schedule conflicts with the Saturdays I try to run the game on.  So, I;m not sure how he is going to work out.  Another player has been difficult to reach by email or phone and I fear the worst.  It's become a little frustrating and I'm considering sticking a fork in this and doing something else.

It's amazing to me that as popular as Pathfinder has become, that I can't find 4 steady players to play on a regular basis.  I found a large, active Pathfinder Society Organized Play community, but they all seem content to just play the events and not a regular home game.  In order to fill the void, I have been playing PFS games at a FLGS that occur every other Sunday.

The last time I GM'd my Pathfinder game was several weeks ago.  There were only 2 players present and it was a role-play heavy session whereupon they were investigating some things in the aftermath of of the goblin raid in the town of Sandpoint.  I am running the Rise of the Runelords Adventure Path.  The new player had played part of this adventure with another group a long time ago, so he didn't want to drive the direction of the game based on previous knowledge.  Overall, they did well and sometimes I feel that even with two players, you can get a lot done in a game, especially when role-playing.  Combat, maybe not so much.  That is where you really need four players.

I do play in a Pathfinder campaign of which I am one of 6 players.  We only meet once a month to play, but we have been together as a group for almost 2 years.  We have discussed what the next game is going to be when we finish the current campaign.  I'm thinking of stepping in and offer myself as GM. 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Bad Dog!

So I came home from work today to discover that my dog "ate" one of my War Torn Worlds 3D terrain pieces. These are made from a recycled rubber material and are gridded for use for 25mm miniatures.  I just bought this piece about 2 weeks ago and haven't had a chance to use it yet in any games.  So friggin' mad right now.  A real capper to a week filled with rage, as if I needed more of that.