Thursday 18 June 2015

The Battle of Bastion

Bastion is the only city that matters, and it's so big and complicated that nobody can rule the whole thing.

So you wouldn't expect to see the sort of grand field battles associated with the modern age.

In actuality, the Battle of Bastion has lasted for decades, and spills out of the city into the rest of the world.

Of course there are Generals that let their rivalries froth over into battles, but they don't really hold out a hope of winning Bastion. Each of the Belligerents involved here actually want to rule over the city, ridiculous as that concept may seem.

d8 Battle of Bastion Belligerents
1: House Gargan (Green, Black, Green Fesses. White Fez)
Want to restore their family to a royal throne, ban astral cults, and rid the city of tax collectors.

2: The White Brigade (Black Saltire, White Fimbriation, on Black Field. White Top-Hat)
Want to broker a peaceful end to the Battle, ensure all belligerents are disarmed, and remove all record of the war.

3: Universal Republic (Red Star on Red, White, Red Pales. Red Tricorne.)
Want any member of an astral cult to be able to vote on city matters, a council of the largest cult heads, and a new Bastion to be colonised in the Polar Ocean.

4: New Industrial Methods (Blue and Red Quarterly with Silver Turtle. Blue Cap.)
Want to prolong the Battle to sell weapons, cut off trade to deep country, and gather Oddities for research.

5: Willing Servant's Front (White Cow on Blue Field. Two-Spiked Helm.)
Want to install a rigid caste system, encourage slavery, and make contact with cosmic beings.

6: Topper House (Black Dog Eating Red Cat on Blue and Gold Stripes. Bearskin)
Want to thin out the city's population, prolong the Battle, and give more power back to the inbred nobility of Deep Country,

Certain Rules of Engagement are followed:

  • Belligerents must display uniform, including a hat, and each detachment must carry a flag. 
  • Non-combatants are not valid targets.
  • Fighting and movement must cease at sunset.  
  • Troop movements, casualties, recruitment, and coalition agreements are to be sent to the Impartial War Monitoring Office by sunrise the next day. 
  • Coalitions must be dispersed after achieving the goal noted on their paperwork.
  • Soldiers wishing to leave the battle must be permitted to do so by sunset the following day.  
  • Any breach of these rules will be swiftly punished by the Impartial War Monitoring Office. 

The target of a coalition is usually one of the city's many palaces, which at some point in time housed a powerful individual. The idea is that holding the palace makes you the defacto ruler of Bastion, but really you just make yourself a target.

Barricade Warfare
Pushing towards the palace an inch at a time is the traditional form of warfare in the Battle of Bastion.
  • Attacks into a Barricade are Impaired, but you can't advance without leaving the Barricade. 
  • A Barricade can be assaulted with melee weapons, but the defenders get to fire on the chargers before they arrive, and get to make the first melee attacks. 
  • The Barricade can be attacked by cannons, explosives, fire, and huge creatures, having 10hp. 
  • It takes an hour to build enough Barricade to hold a single Detachment, and fill the width of a city street. 
  • An extra hour can be spent to add any of the following to your Barricade:
    • Grizzly Trophies - Attachments must pass a WIL Save to charge. Requires corpses. 
    • Glorious Enshrinement -  Defenders will fight to the death.
    • Deathtraps - Chargers take an additional d6 damage when they reach Melee range.
    • Powder Kegs - Light the fuse to blow the barricade and cause d12 damage to everyone nearby. Requires 1g worth of Gunpowder.
    • Secure Bunker - Enough room for four people to cower. The bunker has 10hp, Armour 3, and ignores anything smaller than a cannon. Requires 1g worth of metal.
    • Escape Tunnel - Fleeing defenders can get to safety without fear of being pursued.    
When palace sieges and barricade warfare take their toll on the belligerents, they'll use any excuse to march their forces out of the city for a change of pace. When one army leaves the city, the rest will eagerly pursue to engage them in the open.

As anyone with a brain can see the Battle is pointless. Doing your time in the Battle is seen as a rite of passage for young Bastionites, who rarely stick to their cause for more than a few months. In later years, veterans look back on the Battle with a mixture of fondness and embarrassment.

Wednesday 10 June 2015

A Gazer Manifesto

Being a Gazer isn't about gazing. It's about seeing. But we aren't seers, we just feel it, y'know?

It's really all about gazing. Just put yourself facing in the right direction, trust in StarryNight, and it'll all become clear.

But we don't gaze. We don't even really see. It's like the things you can't see just go into our minds and then they become real, so we can see them. But you can't look at them.

StarryNight knows our minds better than we do so the only truth is to open up your mind to him. And we do that by gazing.

He brought us to Hellspace, and Hellspace is full of Demons, so really aren't we Demons too? But you can't Gaze into Hellspace. You have to go out there and become a part of it yourself. There's something out there that StarryNight wants us to go and perceive so we have to find it.

And we do that by gazing.

1d6 Famous Gazers
1: Morpherbella - Gazer Socialite (2)
- Look Beyond Reality
- Be Enigmatically Compelling (+1)
- Go Into a Biting Frenzy
Gear: Neon Ballgown, Holo-Parasol.

2: Mel Tadcat - Gazer Stim-Pusher (3)
Look Beyond Reality
- Pressure a New Customer into Stim Use (+1)
- Run Crying to her Boss
Gear: Headache-Inducing Black and White Spacesuit, Metal Fists, Loads of Stims.

3: Emprah Sar- Prodigious Philosopher (3)
Look Beyond Reality
- Make Vaguely Profound Statements (+1)
- Act Like a Spoiled Brat
Gear: Purple and Gold Spacesuit, Holo-Rod. 

4: Moment - Gazer Petty Thief (2)
Look Beyond Reality (+1)
- Pickpocket Someone
- Appear Pathetic
Gear: Pink and purple spacesuit, bloodshot eyes, stim-shakes. 

5: Gummi Lan - Gazer Hellspace Explorer (3)
Look Beyond Reality
- Push Deeper into Hellspace
- Consort with Demons (+1)
Gear: White Spacesuit, Demon Pipes,

6: Sammy Nostrox - Earthborn Gazer Legend (3)
Look Beyond Reality
- Twist Mechanical Body into an Unnatural Shape
- Do Nothing (+1)
Gear: Rainbow spacesuit, stim-smoke-tent, mostly mechanical body. 

Here's what you get for being a Gazer. 

Move: Look Beyond Reality

Gear: Take a brightly painted spacesuit, and choose one of the following:
  1. Mind-Altering Stims.
  2. Exotic but Stupid Artificial Pet.
  3. Droning Instrument.

Roll 1d6 again for the second part of your tag, and your second Move.
  1. Interpreter
  • Make Sense out of a Pattern
  1. Consorter
  • Make Sense of a Demon
  1. Chemist
  • Find the Right Stim
  1. Noisemaker
  • Create Sensory Distortion
  1. Charger
  • Get a Vision from an Electrical Current
  1. Prophet-Hunter

  • See the Truth about Someone

Tuesday 9 June 2015

Being Arkbound

Arkbound know that humanity's best chance of survival is to stay on the Ark.

Some people say that the big ideologies of the Ark don't fit onto a spectrum.

We drew a diagram to disprove that.

As you can see, Arkbound are correct in two ways, being both pro-Godmachine and anti-Demon. Every other ideology is incorrect in at least one way. The burden of our correctness is that we fully support everyone's right to their own ideology. The burden of their incorrectness is that they must follow our imperative to stay aboard the Ark and provide fuel for Godmachine.

If we can get enough fuel to the forges the Ark will jump again, and Hellspace will just be a nightmare we woke from.

Our ranks and uniforms give humanity comfort through structure.
Our swords are a symbol of our dedication to peace.

We are the most human because we want a united humanity to survive together.

1d6 Famous Arkbound

1: Clarity Cox - Arkbound Investigator (3)
Moves- Enforce a Rigid Structure
- Spot a Lie (+1)
- Leave a Bad ImpressionGear: Black uniform, concealed shortsword, leap-boots.

2: Enforcer Eden - Weary Arkbound Enforcer (2)
Moves- Enforce a Rigid Structure
- Draw on a Bad Experience of Humanity
- Maintain good relations with enemies (+1)Gear: Brown uniform, copper sword, blast-glove. 

3: Satch Riza - Champion Duellist (3)
Moves- Enforce a Rigid Structure
- Overpower an opponent in a duel (+1)
- Use his Reputation for Mercilessness
Gear: Ceramic Armour and shield, blunted sword.

4:  Terrence Brig - Arkbound Outer-Patrol Captain (2)
Moves- Enforce a Rigid Structure
- Spot a Runaway (+1)
- Pilot in the Ark's ShadowGear: Interceptor ship, curved sword, stun-pistol, flying ace novels. 

5:  Lilly Mars - Arkbound Shepherd (2)
Moves - Enforce a Rigid Structure
- Bring Somebody Back to the Ark (+1)
- Gamble a Big StakeGear: White Uniform, shortsword, weird dice games. 

6:  Belus Balix - Reformed Bonehead Drill-Sergeant (3)
Moves- Enforce a Rigid Structure (+1)
- Break Recruits
- Speak of Visions from GodmachineGear: Video-mask over bondhead, heavy swords and jacked arms. 

Here's what you get for being Arkbound. 

Move: Enforce a Rigid Structure
Gear: Take a coloured uniform and sword, and choose one of the following:
  1. Extra fancy uniform.
  2. Extra fancy sword.
  3. Life-Scanner.
Roll 1d6 again for the second part of your tag, and your second Move.
  1. Enforcer
  • Use force to calm things down.
  1. Pursuer
  • Chase down a fugitive.
  1. Forge Feeder
  • Claim a Sacrifice for the Forge.
  1. Officer
  • Boss around somebody below you.
  1. Advocate
  • Demonstrate the Dangers of Leaving the Ark
  1. Duellist
  • Demonstrate your superior skill with a sword.

Monday 8 June 2015

To Be a Bonehead

Boneheads don't need Godmachine. It got us this far, but it's clearly just a busted piece of machinery. Idiot worshipers interpret every engine rumble or flickering light as holy scripture, and throw our most valuable salvage back into the Forges for nothing in return. We're better off on our own.

If you're really going it alone, don't be breathing in that air Godmachine is pumping out. Or eating the food from its filthy Forges. We've got to be ready to leap out into Hellspace as soon as that machine finally malfunctions and starts to burn us all alive.

It's a simple operation.

You won't eat or drink or breathe again, but you aren't free until you've felt the hot wind of Hellspace on your naked skull. 

We are the most human because we thrive without reliance on Godmachine. 

d6 Famous Boneheads

1: Tor - Self-Proclaimed Bonehead Emperor (3)
- Rage Against a Machine
- Whittle on about Bonehead Philosophy (+1)
- Unify the Boneheads
Gear: Baroque suit of Armour, self-written scripture on the Bonehead philosophy.

2: Archiferous Thunk - Bonehead Ark-Hull-Crawler (2)
- Rage Against a Machine
- Salvage Scrap from the Ark's Hull (+1)
Gear: Heavy Metal Space-Suit with Grip Claws.

3: Slim Pickins - Bonehead Fashionista Assassin (2)
- Rage Against a Machine
- Become the Center of Attention (+1)
- Carry Out a Dirty Kill
Gear: Implausibly fancy outfit containing multiple hidden weapons.

4: Ultra-Chakka - Drunk Bonehead Prizefighter (3)
- Rage Against a Machine
- Lament the Fate of Humanity (+1)
- Take a Beating
Gear: Antique Spear and Shield.

5: Scrabbleback - Enthusiastically Brutish Bonehead Recruiter (3)
- Rage Against a Machine (+1)
- Sniff Out Faith in the Godmachine
- Beat Someone into Agreement
Gear: Heavy club.

6: Burnun Ruff - Angry Bonehead Firestarter (3)
- Rage Against a Machine
- Light the Place Up (+1)
- Tell a Great Fire-Related Story
Gear: Flamethrower, reflective goggles.

Here's a peek at the Bonehead character section in Hellspace. Along with the Wildcard table, this gives you most of your character info.

Move: Rage Against a Machine
Gear: Take a skull for a head, removing the need to breathe, eat, or drink, and choose one:
  1. Talking Spare-Skull.
  2. Extra-fancy Costume.
  3. EMP Bomb.
Roll 1d6 again for the second part of your tag, and your second Move.
  1. Activist
  • Annoy Somebody
  1. Preacher
  • Prove you Don’t Need the Godmachine
  1. Blackmarketeer
  • Use your Contacts to Get Something
  1. Gadgeteer
  • Throw Something Together from Scrap
  1. Survivalist
  • Get Through a Real Nasty Place
  1. Extremist
  • Act like a Primal beast 

Wednesday 3 June 2015

The Oddegon Rail

The Oddegon is a huge blue steam train (12hp, Armour 3) with the face of a screaming old man. A year ago it blasted off on its maiden voyage, overloaded with three hundred passengers, and didn't return.

The intended route was:
- Leave Bastion under a blessing ceremony. 
- Barrengap. A hail-battered mining town on the near edges of Deep Country. Full of people that hate Bastion and technology, but they begrudgingly refill coal supplies.
- Riddled-with-Worms (Pronounced Riddla-Worrum). Quaint village on a lake obsessed with servicing trains that pass through. Treat drivers as celebrities. 
- Petal. A failed city of disease and wine, pointing out to the Golden Lands. Mostly empty beside a few sailor caricatures offering to take people off the continent. 
- The Dumb Pike. Site of Pilgrimage for several Star Cults. An extinct volcano that flashes like a strobe from its crater on some nights. Most of the passengers were headed here. Put a dungeon in here, draw a rail through it, and put the wrecked Oddegon at the end of it. 
- Return to Bastion via Barrengap for refueling.  

The group have access to the Map below.

Travel Times are noted in hours, on foot. You also have a form of Rail Transport, which may be quicker. Roll d6 to find out what it is. .
1: Pump Truck - 4hp. Three times as fast as foot. Man-powered.
2: Old Steamer - 7hp, Armour 2. Four times as fast as foot. 
3: Rail Wagon - 6hp. Three times as fast as foot. Horse-drawn. 
4: Repulsion Pod- 5hp, Armour 2. Eight times as fast as foot. Takes an hour to start up from stop. 
5: Wheel Beast - 12hp, Armour 1. Three times as fast as foot. Needs lots of food. 
6: Track Ship - 8hp, Armour 1. Wind pushes it d6 times as fast as foot. Re-roll at the start of each day.

Roll d6 once for the whole group to see who's coming along on the Search Party. All are Detachments.  
1: Wreck Worshippers - 3hp, Hammers (d6), Stone Helmets. Want to marvel at wrecked machinery and structures. 
2: Dumb Pike Pilgrims - 3hp, Spears (8), Astral Symbol Tattoos. Want to find the truth of Dumb Pike. 
3: Bereaved Cult - 3hp, Muskets (d8), Flower Wreaths. Lost half their number on the Oddegon. 
4: Pre-Paid Mercenaries - 6hp, Muskets (d8), Lengthy Contract. Serving a contract to a filthy rich entrepreneur aboard the Oddegon. 
5: Loyal Pet Pack - 4hp, Teeth and Claws (d6), Collars. Inexplicably brought together as a collective mind in search of their lost owners on the Oddegon. 
6: Investigation Retinue - 5hp, Pistols (d6), Broad Hats. Want to find unveil truth at any cost. 

For each day's travel on the rail roll d12 for a Rail Encounter.
1-3: d10 Railmuggers - STR 13, 6hp, Pistol (d6), Bearded Mask and Cloak.
1: Lying in wait for you.
2: Drunk and feasting on stolen steaks.
3: In a butchered heap after being killed by Justicemen.

4-6: d8 Claw Hitchers - DEX 13, 5hp, Claw-Gun (d6) and Wire, Pointy Hair and Scarred Faces, Rickety Wagon. 
4: Lying in wait for you.
5: Screaming and joyriding a chariot along the rails.
6: Tearing up rails for salvage.

7-9: d6 Justicemen - STR 14, 5hp, Hacking Sword (d8), Lead Suit (Armour 1), Back Banner.  
7: Stopping everyone for inspection, and you're always guilty.
8: Repairing their broken down Justice Railwagon (8hp, Armour 1).
9: Burning a criminal alive.

10-11: Maintenance Crew - 3hp, Heat-Saw (d6, ignore armour), Goggles. 
10: Poking a big pink blob that's blocking the rails.
11: Working on a broken down Locomotive.

12: Zoo Train - 1 Dozen-Tusk-Elephant, 20 Miniature Ostriches, 2 Fighting-Giraffes, 4 White Crocodiles, 1 Hell-Hog. 
12: Headed back to Bastion to deliver its cargo.

If you go off the rails, roll d12 each day for a Wild Encounter
1-3: d8 Techno Hunters - 5hp, Extreme Crossbow (d8), Wooden Mask. 
1: Following the scent of steam from the Oddegon.
2: Burning a pile of scrap machinery and trying to inhale the techno essence.
3: Target practice against a wrecked locomotive (not the Oddegon).

4-6: d12 Arrow-Men - STR 15, 6hp, Pole-Club (d8), Prison Uniform. 
4: Breaking rocks under the watch of a Justiceman.
5: Engaged in a fight with the Justicemen.
6: Having a very civilised picnic.

7-9: Crawling Star-Rock - STR 16, DEX 5, WIL 15, 12hp, Armour 3, Rock Arm (d10).
7: Crushing cows into meaty pulp and sucking it through its beak.
8: Spinning downward to dig out a sleeping hole.
9: Under attack from an Isolationist (see 12).

10-11: Rolling Corpse Pile (Detachment) - STR 13, DEX 10, WIL 2, 5hp, Armour 2. .  
10: Digging deep into the ground to pull out new corpses.
11: Chasing a bemused cow.

12: d4 Isolationists - WIL 15, 5hp, Boomgun (d8), Visored Helm
12: Harvesting ugly vegetables from a field with their visors down, totally oblivious to you. 

Each night, roll d6 for a Night Event.
1: Food Issues: Fix it or your followers lose d6 WIL. 
2: Water Issues: Fix it or your followers lose d6 STR. 
3: Weather Issues: Tomorrow's travel takes twice as long.  
4: Fuel Issues: If your vehicle uses fuel, it's out. 
5-6: All quiet.