Sometime last year, on this very forum, i presented the beginnings of a short story i wrote, of Tam, the little troll witch who was trying to coax Ramlin the grumpy old wizard into teaching her his wizardry.
Unfortunately i never managed to continue the story. In the meantime, however, in my imagination a unique little fantasy setting formed around the story, one by which i am increasingly enamored (i like to describe this feeling as having found my "inner Tolkien").
So I will try to figure out a few Ideas on how to use that setting in Sword & Scoundrel here.
Part 1: Races/Species/Folks
There are three major species populating the known world: Man, Sprites, and Trolls.
Man are, as per usual, the most numerous of the Races, although the others are just as diverse.
No special rules apply to them, but they do get to purchase Social Standing normally – the other races interact differently with the Social Standing Tiers.
The Sprites are a race of usually small growth, usually living in proximity to various expressions of nature, such as trees, ponds, and streams, but also caves and other such. Depending on their origin, they may exhibit various different physical traits and abilities.
Being relatives to spirits of the elements, the Sprites are inherently magical, naturally gifted with a special art of Transfiguration that all Sprites are privy to, making them uniquely skilled craftsmen.
Some Sprites expand on their magical abilities: they may pick up the Ghost Hand, a common trick among Sprites, or they may be training in the art of Glamour – to change the perception one's appearance, while the highest echelons may even learn Wildform – the elusive art of shape-shifting.
-1d Sprite Magic (free trait)
You have the power of Transfiguration, meaning you never take disadvantage for lacking tools on craftsmanship checks and allowing you to tap this trait for them. You also have a favoured material based on your origin. When working with your favoured material, you roll with advantage. Additionally, if your Sprite Magic dice value is greater than your Mind derived attribute ([Cunning + Willpower]:2), you may use your Sprite Magic value instead to form your Magic Pool.
Finally, this trait can be upgraded at the cost of 2 trait points per +1d, up to 3d.
-Special Trait: Ghost Hand (4 points)
You can move objects at a distance, as if you had a Brawn equal to your Willpower. (Todo: some way of applying this in combat - as a compensation for their lacking Brawn Tap Value.)
-Special Trait: Glamour (5 points)
You can always tap your Sprite Magic for disguise, stealth, and social checks. (Todo: mechanic for limiting this somehow - for example, if the glamour is somehow dispelled for someone, it shouldn't just be possible to reapply, similar to how all sales are final.)
-Special Trait: Wildform (5 points)
You can shape-shift, allowing you to take on another physical form for a time, even one that has a higher Brawn than you normally have. The maximum Brawn you can achieve with a different shape is your base Brawn + your Sprite Magic dice rank.
Being of dwarfish physical size, a Sprite's Brawn is limited to 3.
-Social Standing Limitations:
Sprites who take Social Standing above Tier 3 (High Freeman) are limited to the T3 trappings and cashout. However, their Sprite magic Trait is upgraded (after upgrading it with trait points normally), beyond the maximum of 3d: T4 gains +1d. T5 gains +2d.
Todo: defining the specific origins and the additional traits as mentioned in the fluff text above.
Trolls are made what they are by their absurd Toughness, both physical, but also in spirit. Perhaps, this is why these harsh folks chose to live in similarly harsh places: in the depths of bogs, high atop mountains, underground in tunnels, or in the cold desert nights.
Trolls have a peculiar physique, in that throughout their lives, they never cease growing, and seem to not die of old age. Although the rate of growth progressively slows down as they get older, a Troll can reach the size of a hill and beyond if only they manage to survive a few centuries.
-Special Trait: Troll Toughness (free trait)
When taking damage, instead of your Brawn tap value, reduce the damage by your Grit rank.
(annotation: this made more sense when i had the idea. i figure you could instead just use the ceaseless growth dice value + the Brawn tap value.)
(EDIT: use Grit Rank OR [BTV + Ceaseless Growth value], whichever is higher. this is most consistent with my vision, even though it is a bit messy.)
-0d Ceaseless Growth (free trait)
Can be tapped in ALL Brawn checks and whenever your sheer physical size matters. This Trait can be upgraded for 1 + the next higher dice rank in trait points.
-Social Standing Limitations:
Trolls who take Social Standing above Tier 3 (High Freeman) are limited to the T3 trappings and cashout. However, their Ceaseless Growth Trait is upgraded (after upgrading it with trait points normally): T4 gains +1d. T5 gains +2d.
Todo: the different subtypes of Trolls and their specific traits.
Brainstorm for settings and game ideas
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