View Full Version : Brave New World

03-08-2010, 02:11 AM
Humanity was utterly broken, and enslaved.
Enslaved for a very, very long time.

Mankind has been collectively under the effects of a Will-Breaker drug for unknown millions of year. Earth was a planet of toys and tools revised, customized, and transformed by unknown sciences for aeons. While Mankind obeyed with puppy-like obedience, everything changed.

And then Humankind awoke to an abandoned, and desolate world of sprawling alien ruins, waste dumps the size of small countries, and vast stretches of pristine, untouched wilderness. And, very rarely, an ancient human structure.

(As a side note, no, this game is not a Post-Apocalype game)

What has happened, when it happened, why it happened, who enslaved humanity, how the continents, the flora/fauna, the Earth itself have changed, why humanity was abandoned, as well as many other questions are yours to discover.

This adventure is an odyssey of Discovery, Exploration, and the triumph of Homo transus.

I've been creating (under the advisement of a P&P RPG veteran) a custom system designed for high freedom creativity, and interactions with the world, a far-future Earth, in a realistic, and highly entertaining, way.

You will need to use brains, creativity, and cunning in order to survive, and if you cannot, then don't bother joining this game, you will die.
The environment is both your biggest enemy, and greatest friend.
You will have to manipulate the environment to your advantage, as your enemies will be nearly as powerful as you.

Basic needs are important in this odyssey, food and shelter will not be trivial. Scavenging technology, and the information on how to create/use said technology (books, data packs, etc, will be integral. Equally integral will be creating your own tech using what you can find, this is how you will get much of your tech, and especially the particularly creative sorts of tech. If you can find the parts for it and have the engineering knowledge of how to put said parts together, then you can create anything that would make sense. Modifications to tech be a big deal.

You awake with a splitting headache in a pool of blood and vomit, surrounded by corpses in their own pools.
There is an intense burning sensation around your neck, caused by what seems to be some sort of collar that rises out of your flesh. With self-examination, you notice a black rectangle set into the flesh near your hand. You attempt to think back...and there is nothing. Only the vaguest of memories, like those of when you were three or four years old, are you able to even begin to make out. You know nothing about anything beyond basic functions, language, and some muscle memories. You start where Eastern Europe is today, but have no idea of this.

You may choose to start with a Major Endowment, or several Minor Endowments. Endowments are built in technological or biological upgrades. Below are several ideas, however, you are encouraged to make your own or customize these (except Telek, that stays as is), as long as it makes sense.

Major Endowments-

Telekinesis- Instead of a lower left arm and hand, you have some sort of...projector. With a glowing, orange core, and three thin tendrils extending from the end. To begin with, you can pick up small objects and throw them away from you. As you grow more skilled, you can pick up heavier objects, multiple objects, have finer control over the objects, manipulate more distant objects, fire blasts of kinetic force, move the objects with greater force, perform actions in less time, and manipulate objects you cannot directly see (like organs).
There's a price for such power, however.
Purpose- Used for transport, and in groups, as a space elevator.

Pyro- There are nodules in your arms that produce some sort of alcohol, you are able to spray this alcohol, and with a spark-plug built into your wrist, light the alcohol into billowing sheets of flame. You can injest alcohols to quicken the regeneration of this fluid. There are also sacks in your lungs that produce hydrogen, and on your lips, a body grown platinum beak, surrounded by leathery skin. When hydrogen reacts with platinum, fire happens. Fill in the blanks here.
Purpose- Military prototype.

Electrician- Your body produces an extremely strong electric current. As you grow in your understanding of this, you become more capable of manipulating and enhancing this current. You can begin with the ability to deliver painful shocks on touch, and learn how to deliver lethal touch attacks, recharge tech, including energy weapons, wreak havoc with electronic systems, and, eventually, project forks of lightning at your foes.
Purpose- Experiments with bio-electric systems.

Dominator- Your thyroid glands have been changed into small factories for the production of the Will-Breaker drug used to keep humanity docile. You can now use this drug to your benefit, controlling people, and eventually, slaving them to your will.
Purpose- Production of Will-Breaker drug.

Robotic A.I. pet- You awake to a small, robotic companion nuzzling you in an attempt to stir you. This pet is completely loyal, and over time, can be enhanced with a more powerful brain (useful for scouting and long distance delivery), increased strength, size and defenses, built in weapons, dispensers, and anything you can do to it.
Purpose- There is one, but cannot reveal due to plot point.

Powered Armor- Your body has been modified to be ideal for powered armor, with ports for direct neural control of the armor, and a basic exo-skeleton that provides little protection, but enhanced strength...to begin with. You can more easily create power armor, and use it to greater effect than those without this Endowment. Very versatile in what you can do with it.
Purpose- This is pretty easy to figure out.

Minor Endowments- typically your standard minor enhancements, like a faster nervous system, increased strength, scanners built into your eyes, etc.

The guiding concept behind the mechanics of my system is that it is not based on "Powers", ala D&D (4e especially), or most RPG video games.
The framework is based on limits and rules, as long as it fits within what you can do, do it.

For example, instead of giving you preset powers with your Telekinesis, I tell you that you can, in general (at an unspecified level), manipulate up 200 kg of weight, split between up to 2 objects, and move them at up to 80 km/hour. You can also project a blast of kinetic force with an energy of up to 50 joules (1 joule is equivalent to the kinetic energy of a tennis ball moving at 23 km/h (14 mph)). You have the ability to quickly use your telekinesis as a Minor action to do something with reduced effectiveness.

Five men are attacking you, four with brutish, edged weapons, and a fifth with a pistol. You lift the pistol wielder into the air, and slam him into a rock wall with hurricane force, snapping several bones that were very likely important, and quickly fire a blast of kinetic energy into the dust and dirt at the feet of the other four. The cloud of dust surges into their eyes, nose, and mouth. This temporarily blinds them, and leaves them sneezing and wretching in a cloud of obscuring dust. You now have a window of opportunity to flee, or finish of the remaining four, without getting hacked down.

Skills are anything you can think of, and are modified by appropriate Ability Scores (Intelligence, Perception, Strength, Dexterity, Charisma and Constitution).
Characters can use almost any skill, almost anytime, but their profficiency with the skill depends on what Ability Scores modify it, and if they have invested any upgrades in the skill. Individual skills can be boosted as an Upgrade (Major or Minor, depending on skill), if skill in question has been used prior to the upgrade.
Examples of skills include-
Cartography- 1/2 Intelligence, 1/2 Perception, map making, etc. Minor.
General Food Handling- Intelligence, cooking, safe food storage, minor foraging.
Shelter Creation- 1/2 Intelligence, 1/2 Dexterity, creation of shelter. Minor.
Ruggedness- Constitution, survival through adverse natural conditions. Minor.
Ranged Weapon (Type)- 1/2 Perception, 1/2 Dexterity, skill of use with a specific ranged weapon, also increases Ranged Weapon (General) by a small amount. Major.
Melee Weapon (Type)- 1/2 Dexterity, 1/2 Strength, skill of use with a specific melee weapon, also increases Melee Weapon (General) by a small amount. Major.
Engineering- Intelligence, creation, modificication, upkeep and usage of tech. Major.
Endowment- Increase your skill with your Endowment. Think of a new thing you want to be able to do with your endowment that makes sense. Major or Minor.
Stealthiness- Dexterity, take a guess. Major.

Over the course of the first session players will gain 1 Major Upgrade (Non-Endowment), 1 Major Upgrade (Endowment), and 1 Minor Upgrade; in addition to what is granted through leveling during this first session. They will also gain 1 Sophisticated Item [(some sort of tech weapon or armor, significant survival supplies, tool kit, data collection, etc) choose this item before the game, and I'll make sure you find it], several days of food/water, clothing, and any Primitive Item they can scavenge (pipes as clubs, metal plates as shields, bag of rocks, extra clothing, etc).
Players begin at level 1 (out of 50), and will end the session at level 3. Normal rate of progress will be about 1 level/session.

Players gain a Major Upgrade every Odd level, and a Minor Upgrade and an Ability Score point every Even level.

One last note, this adventure is extremely amenable to user created content, in fact, it will be a mandatory part of the odyssey. Particularly for tech and item manipulation.
This makes Earth feel more realistic, and does wonders for immersion, involvement, and enjoyment.

This will not be a Sunshine n" Lolipops adventure, there will be dark, mature themes.
The nitty, gritty of the game system will be explained "in person".

Hosting on Maptools, using Skype.
You can contact me on aschekalt at yahoo.com.