An Example Skyraider

The second of today’s preview posts about Skyraiders of the Floating Realms, this time a starting character from the game.

Note the Zero edition of the game is still on Kickstarter but we are in the last 34 hours at time of writing.

Janic the Songbird                                                                                                          

DEX CON STR CHA INT POW
13 14 11 15 12 11

[Commentary: Characteristics rolled on 3d6, rerolling 1s and 2s, and swooping around two values]

Bonus Damage: 0             Hit Points: 14      Armour Value:1d4 (Leather armour)

[Commentary: Characters with Strength over 15 get a Bonus Damage, Hit Points = CON]

Career: Bard       Age: 29

[Commentary: Career provides 110 of the Additional points below, with an extra 30 coming from a pool so the player can personalise the character. Janic suffers slightly skill-wise for having slightly average characteristics, but this is pretty typical spread for a starting character  ]

Base Calculation Base Additional points Total
Melee (STR+DEX) 24 20 44
Missile (DEX+INT) 25 20 45
Thrown (STR+DEX) 24 24
Unarmed (STR+INT) 23 23
Awareness (CON+INT) 26 26
Magic (POW + INT) 23 23
Deception (DEX+INT) 25 20 45
Healing (INT+CHA) 27 27
Mechanisms (DEX+INT) 25 25
Movement (CON+DEX) 27 27
Lore (INTx2) 24 24
Linguist (INT+CHA) 27 27
Culture (INT+CHA) 27 20 47
Oratory (POW+CHA) 26 10 26
Fast talk (INT+CHA) 27 20 27
Performance (CHA+DEX) 28 30 58
Trade (CHA+INT) 27 27

Equipment: Dagger (1d4 damage), Rapier (1d6 damage), Leather armour (1d4 armour value), A lyre. flamboyant clothes, hooded travelling cloak.

[Commentary: The choice of career dictates this starting loadout, but most adventures start with an opportunity to buy extra equipment]

Spells: Balance, Confuse, Enthral, Bless

[Commentary: The first three spells come from the Bard career while the last spell is a free choice made by the player]

The Voyage of the Flying Circus

The first of two posts today to promote/celebrate the D101’s ZineQuest 2 entry the double zine Grogzilla/Skyraiders of the Floating Realms. This is the short bit of game fiction that starts off Skyraiders with a bang, showcasing the fantastic adventure action of the game and a slight obsession with a certain 70s British comedy show 🙂

Somewhere up in the sky under the New Sun

Bravely the crew of the Flying Circus, brought the skyship around in the sky to avoid the flight of small blue-skinned winged humanoids, known as Zarks, that were bearing down on them.

“They are after the Spam for sure, that Dwarfen tined meat is too delicious for them to resist!” shouted Capt. T’errick Jhoanes in an effort to cheer his terrified crew. He knew that the Zarks being notorious pyromaniacs would fire bursts of flame from their horns at the wooden ship as soon as they were in range, for these s were

Sure enough, the lead Zark fired off a burst of flame and swiftly set the mainsail alight. More explosions of flame hit the bow of the ship where the rest of the navigation gear was situated. “Bugger! Going down, brace yourselves for impact” shouted Capt Jhoanes to his crew, who knew the drill and grabbed on to the nearest thing nailed down to the ship’s deck. With its bow engulfed in flame, The Flying Circus lost its battle with gravity and started to plunge towards a nearby sky island, covered in trees, and no more than ten miles across.

The ship crash-landed on the centre on the wooded sky island. It ploughed through the tree canopy until it came to rest in a glade which seemed to be the start of an ancient paved road. As the crew sounded off, each member stating their condition, either bruised or minor sprains, the Capt jumped off the ship. On a quick look needed a fast repair of the burnt section of the wooden hull. “Right! It looks like everyone’s all right, carpenters start assessing the damage. Rest of you start forming wood gathering parties. No sign of the Zarks, which is good. Hang about what’s that?” He trailed off, his gaze drawn up the paved road into the distance where he saw a magnificent and intact step pyramid a relic from the ancient times before the land broke and floated up into the sky. “Crikey it’s a Vault, perhaps this trip will have a big pay-out after all!” he said rubbing his hands in glee, for such places if undiscovered held the riches from before the land was broken and floated into the sky.

Lost in happy thoughts, he felt a tap on his shoulder. It was his First mate drawing his attention.  “Captain!” the First mate said, pointing in the opposite direction to the pyramid, to the other side of the Glade. There in full black plate, with a helm that completely masked the identity of the wearer, was a warrior armed with sword and shield.  Except Captain Jhoanes knew the identity of the sinister set of black armour.

“You again!” he exclaimed at his old nemesis.

“Yes, I told you it was but a flesh wound” came the echoing voice of the Black Knight.

Next up: An example Skyraiders character. 

Skyraiders of the Floating Realms in a Nutshell

Currently funded as part of D101’s ZineQuest2 Two for One Zine Kickstarter along with Grogzilla issue 1. It is a zine sized RPG, which is the first pass of about 40-50 A5 pages tidied up, so it is playable. It’s a Zero Edition, with the full first edition coming this summer as a fully kickstarted game.

It comes in two blended-bits :

  • A colourful and action-packed setting, The Floating Realms.
  • A concise d100 system.

The Floating Realms

I wanted a setting that is immediate, easy to explain and sucks the players in. I know the idea of adventurers travelling from one sky island to the next in a post-apocalyptic setting, in search of adventure and loot gets me going. It has done since I came across Skyrealms of Jorune. There’s lots of weird fun fantasy game juice packed into even the Zero Edition. Peter Frain has pretty much nailed the spirit of the game in his front cover of two adventurers at the prow of a Sky Ship, with the New Sun and the Dead Moon in the background.

The D101-System

At the beginning of the year, I sat down and over two days wrote a 20-page concise D100 system. It’s written from the ground up, not from a SRD, because I wanted to get my idea of what I wanted from a D100 across. If you are familiar with OpenQuest it’s a continuation of many of the ideas I introduced in that game.

Characteristics are still the familiar building blocks, except for Size which I’ve dropped,  randomly rolled. I’ve dropped Size from the usual D100 list of characteristics because I never use in my games. Characteristics as well as being the basis of Hit Points (now Constitution) and being used to work out Bonus Damage, characteristics determine the starting values of skills, usually two relevant characteristics for each skill.

Characters have a previous career, which sets them up for play with a set of skills and three magic spells since everyone on the Floating Realms knows a bit of magic, and a default set of starting equipment. They are then individualised with by allocation of small number points to skills they haven’t already advanced with their career, and players get to pick an additional spell. They advance in free form manner, earning Improvement points that the player can spend on the skills and magic they want, as well as gaining contacts, skills and magic through completing missions for their organisations.

There’s one Skill test system. The skills list is short and concise, even compared to OpenQuest, and the system of simple difficulty modifiers is even more aggressively applied. In any given situation only one difficulty modifier applies from a set range (-40%, -20% , +20%, +40%).  And modifiers from magic trumps mundane situational ones.

Opposed skill tests are now so that only player rolls their skill, which is modified up or down if their opponent is more or less skilled than them. I realised I’ve been doing this instinctively for years since it gives similar results to both sides rolling and takes the pressure off me as Referee.

It has one magic system, one list of spells, and no magic points. Instead, you roll against Magic skill to see if the spell is successful and if you fumble the character can not use it again this gaming session. There’s a shortlist of straightforward and powerful spells in this version of the game.

Combat is straightforward, with characters acting in the order of the skill they are using, from highest to lowest, so characters who are more skilled get act first. There’s still attack rolls, followed by defensive reactions to prevent. Armour has a dice armour value, and weapons do damage ranging from 1d4 to 1d12. There are no hit locations.

I’ve moved the system away from resource management and ditched a lot of fiddly numbers. There are no equipment lists and counting of coins and the magic pointless magic system is another example of this.  If it’s necessary to know the outcome, a simple skill test is applied to resolve the situation. So, for equipment acquisition the Referee either says yes to reasonable requests and moves on or makes the player perform a successful Trade skill test, modified for availability in the character’s current location, to gain the item they are after.

Overall this is a heavily modified version of OpenQuest, to the point that it’s become its own thing. Its been written from the ground up, and I won’t be releasing it under the OGL. If I had to give the system a name, I’d call it the D101-System 😊

 

Skyraiders of the Floating Realms on ZineQuest 2 now!

Ok, this one has moved fast, and already funded, the next stretch goal for this year’s ZineQuest2 on Kickstarter is a little zine sized D100 Fantasy Adventure RPG I’ve been working on called Skyraiders of the Floating Realms.

It’s a maximum gaming fun concise D100 with a punchy immediate fantasy setting, centred on adventurers travelling and exploring the Floating Realms of the title using Sky Ships and other methods.

I explain a bit more in this update.

As I said its already funded, and I’m now funding two quick adventures as final stretch goals.

Here’s the front cover by Peter Frain, which is in grayscale because that’s the rules of ZQ2 (all art should be like an old 80s zine in B&W or grayscale), but if you want it in colour there’s a high tier pledge level which allows you to do that.