The Undercroft #6

Releasing things is hard. Some days I just sit here and look at the stacks of books and wonder why they're still here. Shouldn't the guy with the thing have come and taken them all to wherever it is they go by now?

Apparently not.

Apparently I have to tell people that they exist. And how to buy them. And how much they are. I honestly don't know how people do it.

Right, so here's the deal: I tell you where to go to buy them (here) and you go buy them. Or not. That's an option you have as well though I try not to encourage it. If it helps convince you I can assure you that everyone involved is very clever and handsome and can think of things newly and greatly.

If you buy enough of them I can give someone money to remind me to sell things correctly. Wouldn't that be cool? Yes. Yes it would.

Hit it 'till it's dead!

A more holistic approach to exhausting your characters. No more HP (I got rid of them already, remember?), no more saves, no more AC (maybe). Just stats.

How to save vs. things
To makes a save you must roll under your current stat score on a d20. You may spend stat points to roll additional dice and thus additional chances to succeed. It only takes one roll to pass, but if any come up as a 20 you automatically fail. The dice can either be rolled together or sequentially, ask your GM. I prefer sequentially since it requires less decision making time, is more suspenseful, and requires the player to ask themselves exactly how important this roll is "just one more".

Unless otherwise noted, "spending" a point means reducing your stat by any number and gaining an equivalent number of extra die roll. Rolls of 1 or 20 (whichever is bad) may have consequences.

Spend charisma points in rolls defending against charms, improve reaction rolls and to ensure the loyalty of your henchmen

All damage is subtracted from your constitution. When you lose all of them you may die or become injured, depending on how your group does this kind of thing.

The only saves made against Con. should involve poison and death. The stat is overburdened, use others if you can imagine them applying. Con is only for when a very physical death is on the cards.

Used for saves involving dodging things you see coming. Also spent to help in hitting things. Much like saves, each point spent gives you another die to use, if any come up 1 then you fail and possibly even fumble

(Dex may fluster some. Without stat bonuses it doesn't give a bonus to AC any more. I say, toss out AC and use Dex instead. Dex 16? Ac 16. Spent some points to hit better? AC went down. Tough titties)

Intelligence is protection against illusions, duplicity, anything that assaults your rational faculties.

Can be spent to help in magic making by allowing additional dice. Whether 1s are automatic failures is down to the GM's tastes.

Spend to hit harder. Each point lets you roll another instance of the damage dice, picking the best  (or whatever you want really). Rolling a double (triple, quadrupole...) lets you add them together, keeping them both. Rolling 1s doesn't do anything special here.

Used to save vs things you might otherwise use constitution for. Such as, sickness, blood draining, strangulation etc.

Saves vs. magic that is neither physical nor bewildering. And for anything else for that matter. When in doubt, use wisdom. If a rock is being rolled down a cliff at the party and no one noticed, use wisdom. Consider it to be luck or intuition.

Running out of a stat

CHA - when you run out of charisma just think "4am on the night bus on your way home from a party". Like that. No real downsides, but you're not much fun.
CON - Die, probably.
DEX - Everyone hits you automatically. You better have some good armour (as long as you're using my armour system, otherwise just keep whatever the armour's AC is as a minimum.)
INT - You are so tired. When you rest you MUST replenish your intelligence before all others.
STR - You're fatigued from all that killing, roll two damage dice and pick the worst when stabbing folks.
WIS - Your luck has run out. Literally. If there is ever any doubt about who is picked to be attacked, or walked into the room first when people forgot to say, or affected by an otherwise indiscriminate effect, pick someone with no wisdom left.

Recovering stat points

Every time you rest you may fully recover ONE stat. All the points, poof, they're back. If you rest somewhere safe and comfortable you may recover 3 of them.

Safe and comfortable does not include dungeons or the outside, ever. Bed + pillows + no threat of being eaten.

What about monsters?

Monsters should be interesting and unique already. Humanoids can spend their HD to represent any stat of their choice.

I generally wouldn't use this for anyone other than players because it is a lot of busy work for a bunch of NPCs and asymmetry is fun.

I should probably make a character sheet. If only to figure out what's left on it.

The Book Of Maiz

Format stolen from Logan Knight:

The Book

You are a Mystic of Maiz, your actions need no explanation.

When you wish something to happen, roll below.

Success requires Minor/Situational Devotion
Major Pact
Inopportune Favour
Brilliant Manifestation of Divinity

The Liturgies of your faith are a contextual guide to the levels of power you can call upon.

Favour may be used in one of two ways for Invocation:

  • Before Rolling, you can offer any number of Favour points to allow you to re-roll that many dice. You can stop at any time but you have to keep the final result.
  • After rolling, if the result is more than 12 you can use Favour points, but can’t re-roll each dice more than once.

Every re-roll adds a Round to the time needed for Invocation. If your Invocation has an ongoing effect or you gain Inopportune Favour, roll below to determine how long it lasts. When the time ends you can offer another Favour point to roll again and prolong the effect.

Duration x d6

Inherent Abilities

Smell the Heart Fire
With a few moments assesment you can determine the relative strength of another in relation to yourself

War Boar
Mystics of Maiz are resistant to mundane pain and cannot be coerced with it

You may also attempt to heal wounds, sickness, and curses.
(One attempt only.)

Success/Bestowed Mark
Bestowed Mark
Brilliant Manifestation of Divinity

Favour can be used in the same manner as Invocation, and if the subject of your healing is part of the cult of Maiz you can re-roll one dice without using Favour.

Calling Upon a Liturgy Beyond Your Reach

If your level is lower than the requirement for a higher liturgy, you must offer a number of Favour points equal to double the levels you are missing in order to attempt to Invoke it. These Favour points don’t grant any re-rolls.

The First Liturgy
Mystic Level 1
In the order of minor aspects of fire, shouting, feats of strength and belligerence

The Second Liturgy
Mystic Level 3
In the order of the sparking of blood fury, rousing monotonous singing, minor porcine transformations

The Third Liturgy
Mystic Level 5
In the order of war-sound, bestowal of significant aspect of the boar, the infliction of pain

The Fourth Liturgy
Mystic Level 7
In the order of feats of head crushing, eye gouging, teeth ripping strength, major aspect of fire

The Fifth Liturgy
Mystic Level 9
In the order of rampant conflagrations, transforming into the avatar of Maiz, the War Boar

Explanation of Terms

Gain Favour with Maiz by performing actions that please him.

  • Smash the skull of a living enemy
  • Destroy something beautiful
  • Eat a ritual meal of splintered bone

  • Perform a significant act of vengeance, for yourself or another
  • Refuse sleep

  • Provoke an act of mass violence
  • Kill a Mystic (of any god), shatter his skull and stamp his brains into the dirt

Minor/Situational Devotion
Invocation requires either something immediately obvious that would please Maiz, or the result of this table:

Minor Devotion
Promise of a pleasing offering.
Short-term abstinence or indulgence.
Manifest something holy from your flesh.
Perform a sacred ritual.
Recount your deeds (offer d4 Favour points)
Religious fever (roll on Duration table).

Major Pact
You must agree to undertake a quest or something equally weighty for Maiz in order for the Invocation to be successful. If you already have one unfinished and you roll another, the Invocation simply fails.

Inopportune Favour
You are honoured with a manifestation of Maiz’s blessing, though the timing could be better. Roll on Duration table unless you used Favour for the roll, in which case the effect is permanent.
Gain d4 points of Favour.

Brilliant Manifestation of Divinity
Your body shreds in the birthing of a terrible avatar of your god, roll on Duration table then roll up a new character. In the case of a Restore/Purge roll it is the target that erupts.

Bestowed Mark
Maiz’s influence manifests as a mutation of His animal aspect. Roll on Duration table unless you used favour for the roll, in which case the effect is permanent.

Oh, gosh, this isn’t quite what you meant to happen. Take a look at the GM, he’s rolling on a table. This isn’t good.

Religious Fever
Mindless, uncontrollable worship until the duration ends.