Monday, February 27, 2012

Project Formerly Called Avian Knights - Now with New Name!

Finally named the project formerly known as Avian Knights as Volant - Kingdoms of Air and Stone Role Playing Game

I've finished the first iteration of CharGen:

Character GenerationTo create a character:

1. Assign numbers to your attributes.
2. Select your Background Template
3. Select your Apprenticeship
4. Purchace your Professional Template(s)
5. Add up all Skill, Attribute, and Edge ranks from your templates
6. Add up the point cost from Professional templates to find out the character's age.

Professional Template Points

The number of points available for purchasing Professional
Templates varies with the character’s Starting Age.
Physical Attributes are STR, COOR, AGY, or END.
15‐17 ‐ 0 Points
18‐21 ‐ 5 Points
22‐25 ‐ 10 Points
26‐29 ‐ 15 Points
30‐33 ‐20 Points
34‐37 ‐ 25 Points, Lose 1 Physical Attribute Point
38‐41 ‐ 30 Points, Lose 2 Physical Attribute Points
42‐45 ‐ 35 Points, Lose 3 Physical Attribute Points
46‐49 ‐ 40 Points, Lose 4 Physical Attribute Points
50‐53 ‐ 45 Points, Lose 5 Physical Attribute Points
54‐57 ‐ 50 Points, Lose 6 Physical Attribute Points
58‐61 ‐ 55 Points, Lose 7 Physical Attribute Points


Method 1 Distribute the numbers 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, and 5 between the six attributes ‐ Strength (STR), Coordination (COOR), Agility (AGY), Endurance (END), Charisma (CHAR), and Intellect (INT).

Method 2 Distribute 45 points as you choose between the six
attributes, with none higher than 15.

Sample Background Template - there are 9 available

Template Name Petty Noble
Type Background
Prerequisite None
Attribute Bonus STR+1
Family Lifestyle Rich
Skill 1 Weather+1
Skill 2 Natural Philosophy+1
Skill 3 Ride+1 or Strike+1
Edge Wilderness

Sample Apprenticeship Template - there are 15 available

Template Name Apprentice Warrior
Type Apprenticeship
Prerequisite END 8 or Higher
Attribute Bonus STR+1
Lifestyle Middle Class
Skill 1 Athletics+1
Skill 2 Strike+1
Skill 3 Missile+1 or Ride+1
Edge None

Sample Professional Templates - there are 72 available

Template Name Avian Squire
Type Professional Template
Prerequisite Ride and Athletics
Points Required 2
Lifestyle Middle Class
Skill 1 Ride+1
Skill 2 Athletics+1
Skill 3 Fist+1
Edge None

Template Name Avian Scout
Type Professional Template
Prerequisite Avian Squire Template
Points Required 2
Lifestyle Upper Middle Class
Skill 1 Ride+1
Skill 2 Survival+1
Skill 3 Hunt+1
Edge None

Template Name Avian Knight
Type Professional Template
Prerequisite Avian Squire Template
Points Required 2
Lifestyle Upper Middle Class
Skill 1 Ride+1
Skill 2 Strike+1
Skill 3 Dash+1
Edge None

Template Name Avian Knight - Advanced
Type Professional Template
Prerequisite Avian Knight Template
Points Required 5
Lifestyle Wealthy
Skill 1 Ride+1
Skill 2 Missile+1
Skill 3 Strike+1
Edge None

Template Name Avian Knight - High
Type Professional Template
Prerequisite Avian Knight - Advanced
Points Required 10
Lifestyle Rich
Skill 1 Ride+1
Skill 2 Strike+1
Skill 3 Dash+1
Edge Flight

And here's an example character designed using these Templates.

Points Required = 19
Age = 32


STR 8 (+1) (+1)= 10
END 10


Natural Philosophy+1
Ride+1 +1 +1 +1 +1 +1 = +6
Athletics+1 +1 = +2
Strike+1 +1 +1 = +3


Edge Wilderness
Edge Flight

Monday, February 13, 2012

More on the Project Codenamed Avian Knights

Some more stuff I 've been thinking on:

Chargen will entirely consist of layering templates. Many templates will have switches, but some will have none. This worked great in Tools of Ignorance, and I'll use it here as well. You will have a stats template + a background template + an apprentice template, then you can buy additional training templates.

Advancement will be by buying training templates. You cannot advance until you take time off to train between adventures.

The military game will gain points through Notice. The civilian game will gain points through Fame. You get both by doing cool stuff appropriate to the character. There will be guidelines for the GM to interpret.

Weapons can start off as either Normal or Special. Special weapons cost more, as they are of excellent craftsmanship, and can be further modified into either Holy or Ancestral weapons. These are equal in power, but different. Holy weapons take their power from the character's religion, and in the hands of anyone not of that religion, they function as Special weapons; while Ancestral weapons take their power from the character's family, and in the hands of someone not of that family, function as Special weapons. Both Holy and Ancestral weapons can be further modified into Legendary weapons. These, while retaining their Holy or Ancestral qualities, have further powers for being Legendary. In the hands of anyone other than the character, they will function as Holy, Ancestral, or Special weapons, as appropriate. Note that the powers are not magical, and are entirely due to placebo effects and respect. Special weapons are better than Normal weapons because they are better made in the first place.

Religion will be much like this world - many competing religions, but no god interventions, no clerical magic, and no answers to eternal questions. Clerical effects are limited to faith-based placebo effects.

Again, the only magic is inherent in the setting itself. I have not yet decided on how far to allow alchemy - the use of natural magic to achieve specific effects - to go. Originally I would limit it to potions and the like, and still strongly lean that way. There is magic in the stone, in the plants, and in the animals; and alchemy is the skill of combining these into different blends.

More later!


Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Spaceship Shen Lung

My current StarCluster 3 face-to-face campaign - I am also running a SC3 IRC campaign - is an exploration game. The PCs are explorers, exploring a newly located wormhole, and rhw systems it leads to. Their company, Dragon Exploration, was low bidder, and they threw the thing together on a shoestring. They bought an old ship, kitted it out with extra fuel tanks for Antimatter, and four air trucks and six flycycles for on-planet exploration. Tonight, I'm going to share the ship with you. Here is the Shen Lung:

This is the View from overhead.

This is the Plan.

The crew sleep on the top deck, and movement up and down is via lift. The back of the ship opens up and access is via a ramp or the lift from underneath. The extra AM fuel is stored across from the WCs and Sickbay.

So far they have explored the first star system, signing trade contracts with a human planet, and are now talking with some interesting aliens, who they are afraid want to eat them.


Thursday, February 9, 2012

Doing a StarCluster on Avian Knights!

Klax and I had a long talk, and hashed some important things out. I'm going to do what I did with StarCluster, and separate out civilian and military into separate games. Right now I'm leaning towards Silverlion's suggestion of "Kingdoms of Air and Stone" for the civilian side of things, and "In Harm's Way: something or other" for the military. This would allow me to focus in on the knights and warships and sky castles for those who are interested in them, and be much more broad in the civilian view, with much more setting information. They would be separate, but interoperable, games. I will be working on them simultaneously, as I worked on SC3 and IHW:SC.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Avian Knights - New Directions

When I was designing Pigboats, I kept narrowing the focus, until it was just American Officers in the Pacific War. Then it felt right.

Avian Knights is going in the opposite direction, rapidly. Enough so that the AK of the title are just a fraction of what I am working with. The ships right now are much farther along, thanks to Levi Kornelsen, who has had some purely awesome ideas. There is also some new concepts, like claiming and guarding a chunk of mountain range in case it rips loose and floats away. There's going to be a whole alchemy based magic, because while people cannot make magic of themselves, the world has magic they can use. Which means getting raw materials from the ground is vital. Which means that there has to be a whole other avian group focused on getting stuff from the ground. Hell, even dirt for terracing is useful, and ships can't go down that far! What I'm thinking is that only a certain few become Knights. Those birds and people who cannot be knights can still perform important and exciting, game-able services.

So - floating castles carved from living floatstone, chained to the mountain range and supplied from half the world away, waiting for mountains to rip themselves out of the earth and fly away. Great shipstone keeled carriers, letting loose squadrons of knights mounted on giant birds, spreading their enormous sails and arcing away. Foragers in the world beneath, searching for precious garberries and waxwort, and finding instead ancient ruins draped in verdant green vines in the misty jungle light, as the pools shiver with the tread of great monsters.

So - I'm looking for a better title.


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Slylands and trade Routes in Avian Knights

I am thinking of the following for Avian Knights:
1: Resources are required to manufacture goods. Each good has different requirements.
2: Resources can be supplied from the region, from the skyland (Internal trade), or from other skylands.
3: Trade routes and trading partners can be set up between skylands, though these are not permanent - even setting aside war, the skylands are at the mercy of the wind, and trade routes can just get unwieldy. When a trade route is broken, a new source must be found.
4: Skyland to skyland trade routes heavily influence relations between skylands.

This should establish a trading game based not on ferrying goods from place to place, a la Traveller, but on exploration and diplomacy.