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Soakman

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  1. I just want to say that I love the Runaways, and thematically I think you did an excellent job with Carolina.

     

    She seems like a very interesting character to play as, but perhaps a bit of a pain to micro-manage. That being said, I would play her, but she may not be everyone's cup of tea. And as Dr. Faustus has brought up, the rainbow cycle excludes certain neighborhoods and many players will likely feel that instead of having additional bonuses and options in certain areas, they will be forced to play Carolina in such a way as to make sure they utilize her in specific locations.

     

    Feeling forced into choosing specific encounters takes away a little bit of the control an player has over how to make use of his character. To off-set this, you may want to give Carolina some sort of ability outside of Living Aurora that may be used in place of it. Maybe due to her shifting nature, she could be able to shift her stats mid-turn if she did not during upkeep (and if she does not use Living Aura that turn). Or something similar to this. It's not well though-out because I am at work and writing a quick response.

     

    But overall I really like her. But her ability feels a bit like it controls you instead of you controlling it. Even with the pendant. Why does she start at the Newspaper?


  2. I just had an idea for a possible 2nd ability for Astrid that may make her more appealing at investigator selection.  I know Shining Aquas is not a fan of her ability as it can potentially be too powerful (but compared to Patrice, I really think Astrid is tame), or too irrelevent. So, to give her an additionl function that isn't abusable, what if:

     

    Sworn to Secrecy

    UPKEEP: Before investigators adjust their stat sliders, Astrid may choose one investigator to test their Willpower. If successful, that investigator receives +1 Focus for this turn.

     

    This would give her a way to buff other players (or herself?) and make them slightly more adaptable to unexpected circumstances.

     

    My only concern is that maybe people do not adjust their sliders as often as I like to.  I've heard of people choosing max Speed, Fight, Luck and never adjusting at all so long as their sanity can take the 1 damage from an encounter.

     

    Would this make her more enticing? Or does it still leave her with sad-looking stats.  At the moment they are sitting on my computer at:

     

    Speed:4

    Sneak:4

    Fight: 3

    Will: 5

    Lore:4

    Luck: 5

     

    With Focus of 2

     

    The alternative (with the original backstory)

    4/5, 3/4, 4/5 with Focus of 2, rumor removal, and +1 to will when there is no rumor in play (giving her 3 stats with 5's AND 2 focus the majority of the game)

     

    And I do understand what Aquas was saying regarding her PS pass requiring her to not use queen bee even though it would, in theory, remove a rumor. But I don't want her personal story to be able to be passed just by using her once per game ability. Obviously, then, you would just use Queen Bee on the first one you came across. I like to encourage characters that promote player options and tactial decisions.

    Sorry if this post is badly explained or layed out; this character is really causing me to double and triple think everything.


  3. I do too. The gossip bit is REALLY good. Lovecraft himself made no qualms in pointed out morality he deemed as being bad and then punishing it (usually people that drank since he was a teetotaler himself).

    Thanks Dr. Faust. That was really pretty much what I was going for.  I did not know that he was a teetotaler, but that makes it all the better.


  4. Hmm. Thanks for that. More thoughts to come as I am off to work. She does feel "off" to me, so you're most likely right about a lot of things. And having gone to undergrad for writing, I really have no qualms with massive re-editing (though I do like the fact that she doesn't understand what she has done until it is too late).

     

    EDIT: Just a theme note about the PS cards: The Cover-Up was meant to be, yes, a cover-up of a rumor that came true. That being said, the people she would be sharing her clues with (other investigators) would be people who knew the truth of the rumor (and possibly how it began) as they are working with Astrid to thwart the AO that is awakening. The idea is that she has become a reliable source of information for the team about the occurences to come.

    The way that I'm thinking about it now, I have two backstory options:

     

    1) Keep Astrid very much the same with maybe some deeper understanding of her power or the mythos that the rumors are based upon. I may even consider keeping her the same and adding an additional ability that is in effect only when a rumor is NOT active.  As far as what this would be, I am not sure. Since she's a gossip, it feels appropriate to be Willpower related. Maybe even just +1 Will as long as no rumors are active (or maybe will skill check rerolls). In the case of the +1 Will, that extra point would probably be deducted from her natural willl and put into another category to broaden her strengths (sneak,speed,fight are likely...lore seems like a lost point as her sanity is only 4 so she will not make a great caster).

     

    2) Re-imagine Astrid as a reporter/gossip rag producer who is working to undercover the deep-seeded rumors that lurk in Arkham's shadows. This will give her a more viable reason to have 4 fight at minimum and lessen her combat flaws. I would have to give her an even stronger backstory in order to make a fight of 5 plausible (but it's possible). Whereas the gameplay mechanics seem to fall more in-line with this concept, I am really, personally, more interested in an average Jane who happens to be dragged into the unnatural than someone who is sussing it out for herself. This is my personal preference, however, and may be biased.

     

    I want to settle on a solid concept before I go about fiddling with abilities because I like to build my characters from the story/theme up. Or, in many cases, the base ability concept (which in this case revolves around rumors).


  5. Thanks. I think you're right about the stats, but I'm not sure where the extra cash will come from. Likely, I'll drop the make-up kit as I'm not sold on it for her anyway. It is true that if her ability IS used, she becomes a mediocre character... the likelihood of her both using her ability AND passing her story doesn't seem very common as it would have to be a game that finds two rumors on the board. 

     

    But the safety guarantee from Queen Bee is very comforting, haha.

    Good call. I am wondering if I should push luck down to a 4 and give her another sneak (she is quite sneaky in her own way).

     

    Thanks again.


  6. Hmm. I'll consider that. The problem is that in order to pass her personal story you would need to complete a rumor and once you've completed it, you're not likely to have to use the rumor-remover. It's not often you get multiple rumors in one game (at least not my games).

     

    And yes, her stats are intentionally low in the combat areas to make up for what I saw as a powerful ability. The bonus being that even if she gets a weapon and goes into combat, her higher-than-average will will make the horror checks more manageable.

    I have no problem upping her fight, I just am not sure thematically if it makes sense.  If I gave her a max 4 fight, would you feel better about her ability? And I didn't want to make the clue trade ability her main one as it would essentially make her an underpowered Patrice.

     

    Convince me if you think I'm mis-thinking this.


  7. Investigator number 6, first draft:

    Everyone meet Astrid Lee!

     

    NOTE: I'm not entirely comfortable with the fail condition. It seems too easy? But the consequences are pretty nasty. Additionally, the story is going to have a few edits (mostly typographical things) but let me know if you have and story suggestions as well. I like the concept but maybe it is a little lacking in emotion/theme/creativity?

     

    Thanks!
    Astrid_zpsdc13bb37.jpgAstrid-Lee_zps8db84dc2.jpgAstrid-Lee-Front-Face_zps67e2775a.jpgAstrid-Lee-Back-Face_zps49df92b3.jpgAstrid-Lee-Marker_zpsc46f817c.jpg


  8. Shining Aquas, you inspired my newest investigator. Let me know what you guys think, as always. He's got pretty conditional abilities so I think they shouldn't be "imbalanced."  The biggest issue with my custom characters is that the flavor text is a little wordy and shrinks the text to difficult to read sizes. But I really enjoy theme, so players may want to whip out a magnifying glass, haha.

     

    Also, I do realize that in the image, he appears to have "horns" but this is the best painterly miner image I could find.

    Hosea_zpse5ee5368.jpg

    Hosea-Mayhew_zps1f4218ed.jpgHosea-Mayhew-Front-Face_zps801fbac5.jpgHosea-Mayhew-Back-Face_zpsb4c9086a.jpgHosea-Mayhew-Marker_zps8c86c547.jpg


  9. Great then! I like her. I would say just adjust the wording to be more other-player friendly, and she seems pretty useful without being overly handy (her gate closing isn't particularly good).

     

    EDIT:  Unrelated note for those who are wondering, during my playtest of Anna Anderson, a gate popped both at the graveyard AND histrorical society.  She never passed her PS as it soon became obvious that the gates there would need closed and nobody had enough clues to seal them. Actions were instead used to find clues, which then lead to having to deal with other looming threats.  Her PS was moved to the back-burner.  This experience leads me to believe that passing her PS is not too easy. Also, when she finally got the graveyard part of her task done, the gate that opened there delayed her.  Bad timing.


  10. I will think about this and maybe add more (is this character an OC or is it "from" something?).

     

    I like the idea of this ability a lot, but I'm uncertain about the wording on the ability description. Does the ability activate EVERY turn after one mystic environment comes into play? Or once per mystic environment that activates?

     

    I'm not sure how often this ability is intended to play as, imo, it is very strong. Some location encounters lead to easy allies/unique items/seals (inner sanctum), and being able to shift through them until you encounter ally encounters is pretty dang good.

     

    It also sounds like Journey may even be able to select addtional stacks PER mystic environment that occurs during the course of the game (IE if 2 were ever put into play during a game, every upkeep she would be able to check six encounter decks).

     

    Not to mention the easily squashible rumors/doom addtions on the mythos deck.  All you have to do is pick any path that is less harmful than the rumor...which is any encounter to be honest.
     

    I feel like she has waaaay too much control over the board. Especially if this happens consistently after a mystic environment occurs.

     

    I feel like she needs gimped in either how often her ability activates, or just in raw stats. Lower her maxes, and maybe make a less useful stat higher (luck/speed) and lower her lore/sneak/willpower.

     

    EDIT: Also, I know this is a house-rule sort of issue, but it seems like a decent amount of people play with one of each sub-type of environment in play at all times.  If the intent is to only allow her to do this whenever a mystic environment is in play, the environment will be in play much longer in these games than one sub-type games.  I would suggest changing the activation to something like "whenever and environment is drawn." This prevents it from activating too often, imo. I don't know this character's back-story, but if there's no specific reason for the trigger to the ability, I would highly suggest changing it to tone down the ability.  Or, like I suggested, severely gimp Journey. Or create a very harsh fail PS that activates if she uses the ability too often.  Or some such thing.

     

    EDIT: 10/16 - I was thinking, if you don't want to handicap her via lowering her total stat values, I would at least make her a 7/3 character.  We all know these characters have a difficult time compared to more evenly distributed characters, and she looks pretty fragile. I don't know here backstory, so this may not make sense for the character, but if you made her a 7/3 I think that with a few minor adjustments to the frequency of her ability, she would become suddenly useable. 

     

    Overly powerful characters often are banned from my games (I'm look at you Patrice). And as she seems so original and cool, I'd hate to have to put someone like her in that pile.


  11. I've only just recently started experimenting with custom content; most of the help here is more use than I will be.

     

    However, I have recently taken on the undertaking of manifesting the entire Lovecraft Country set. This undertaking is still a work in progress, BUT I did come up with the idea to print out the boards via photoshop onto fabric transfer paper and then ironing them onto a sturdy fabric to create "fabric maps/boards" that fit sort of the old-timey feel of the game, and also are much easier to store than traditional boards.

     

    I personally think that this might be the best method for boards.  The only significant issue is that it's risky as the transfer paper can be pricey and, if the ironing process doesn't take or the print doesn't come out crisp enough, you may have a tough time reading the alternate encounter text for each location.

    Other than these things (or if you just like the idea of fabric boards enough to keep trying), this method is pretty great.  I'm not a "perfectionist" so the first try worked out just fine for me (even though there are a few missing letters/mismatches along the seams).


  12. Yeah, I thought of this Dr. Faust, but the lowest I can make it is 3, where she will only have one die to roll. Might be worth it though. I feel like that will be plenty of time for her to possibly fail. Moons move a lot.


  13. I also just had a thought that maybe you hadn't considered. When the The Turning leaves Sadie on a space with a monster with toughness above one, she will be forced to fight it. Regardless of whether or not her will check will pass. 

     

    Also, I had a suggestion from my boyfriend:  Maybe, while Sadie has the "Beast Within" magical effect, she should not be able to enter locations.  This would give you a reason to switch forms, and also makes sense thematically... Nobody is going to sell a rifle to werewolf. Or allow them into their roadhouse. I would say to apply this only to stable locations, but then you can still nab clues as a were-thing, which is the main reason why you enter locations to begin with.


  14. Good points Aquas. And actually I did think there was a sanity cost. I mostly decided to give Sadie the knife as a way to lower her total equipment value without providing a giant boost in firepower (since she'll already be quite strong).

    The pass condition will need to be looked at further without the sanity cost I thought it had, but I did want to note that the casting modifier is -2 and her max lore is 4.  This is a less than 50% chance she will successfully cast the spell every turn.

     

    Additionally every time a moon monster moves, until she passes her personal story, she will transform (and transform back). The problem I see here is that there's no reason for her not to just cast the spell again as soon as her turn is up.  This wasn't as big of a problem to deal with, in theory, when I thought there was a sanity cost for the spell.

     

    I don't want a character that has a permanent advantage from this spell. What I want is a character that can tip the scales using this spell, but at a cost.  

     

    Any suggestions on how to limit the use of Inner Beast without making it completely useless?  I don't find the "nightmarish" issue very convincing (thanks for that though Dr. Faust), but Sadie's will also isn't that high so if she wants to engage in combat, there's going to be some risk there anyway. And nobody really wants to waste clues on combats.


  15. I do understand how it function Dr. Faust. My main concern, is that you would typically want to use her as a spell caster, which makes having high lore a liability as you may end up with a horror check that would drop your sanity by 2 or (if you got a terrible roll) 3. And on top of that, then having to cast shriveling which would scoop out yet another sanity.  

     

    Sure, you could go in with your lore low, but with a -2 to a cast (as per dread curse or some more difficult spells) your chances of casting spells is significantly lowered and you will loose the casting sanity regardless of whether or not you succeed in the cast.

     

    I, personally, wouldn't want to risk cast dread curse with only 1 die to roll. Because that means if I failed, I would be down 2 sanity and still have to deal with a failed combat check.

    But maybe that's my personal problem. I'm just not THAT much of a risk taker.

    The dual were-wolves sound interesting, haha. The payoff for Sadie's "attack" during moon monster movement, is obviously that she can't decide NOT to. She looses control and will end up wherever the mythos decide she ought to. Failing her PS could be disastrous if she ended up with agoraphobia, lol.  But I think it's fair, as she is fairly powerful.


  16. Here's another of mine. She is very different... and bends the typical rules/archetypes of this game quite a lot. So there may be many balances required, but I've also come to the conclusion that it's just the nature of the beast.

     

    Attempting to create a character around a "magical effect" is pretty tough. But I think she's ok. If her style is not your cup of tea, I would suggest just not using her instead of trying to re-tweak her.  That being said, I am open to suggestions so long as Summon the Beast is her focus and her story remains similar.

     

    Sadie_zpsa815a7ad.jpgSadie-Godfrey_zps19789451.jpgSadie-Godfrey-Back-Face_zps29096b84.jpgSadie-Godfrey-Front-Face_zps926432cd.jpg

     

    Also, just a note. I grant that she is very good overall. But I do want you to remember that many of her gameplay choices may be eliminated by "The Turning." She is forced to move around the board some turns, and this may trap her between monsters she is unable to handle, or place her away from her intended destination. When this occurs, she will need to adjust her plans.

     

    I am open to lowering some of her stats (lore for the PS if you think it is easy, fight if you think the maxed out 7 with inner beast is too high though I think it is pay off for the unpredictable movement, or even speed to create more trouble regaining her footing after The Turning has moved her). Basically I just want your thoughts.


  17. I will check back on this later, as I have quite a bit going on atm. But, I like the idea of the ability... my issue is that her only combat oriented stat (and her highest stat to boot) is Lore.  This ability would fit better on a low lore investigator. Some horror checks are rather easy to begin with (-1, -2) and this means that Sister Lucy will always have a chance to take sanity damage (sometimes more than 1 per horror check). And if she is prepared to fight it (with spells presumably), she will likely take even MORE damage than if she minimized her lore and used a rifle. Especially considering spells cost sanity to cast.

     

    I do like this thematically, but I'm not sure it fits with a character whose lore is so high. Perhaps lower her max lore and consider making her Will her high stat and upping her speed.

     

    This being said, we then have the issue that will has become a fairly useless stat.  Consider making her spell checks Will roles, and her Horror checks lore rolls with damage on success (with a lowered max lore). It's entirely possible, Sister Lucy has been "blinded by her faith" in the sense that she disbelieves that the horrors around her are possible as she has never known any "lore" other than her own religion. And would therefore take less stock in them.

     

    All in all, more than anything, I don't like that this makes Will pretty useless as a stat because this also gets rid of one of her weaknesses (as it stands, it is only max 4 and paired with lore her combat stat).

     

    I am interested in why you swapped the stat pairings for fight and lore though. This allows her to have high fight and will, which is a potent battle combo...but neither stat is particularly good with her, and she never rolls will for horror checks anyway.

     

    My recommendation: Keep her lore high, and use lore for her horror checks instead of will at a cost. So she has a choice to use her will (which is worse) or her Lore (an advantage for a cost). This also makes it so will is still important (if she'd rather not pay the cost). The cost could be as minor as spending one movement point during the move phase, or as major as paying a spell. Just don't make the cost sanity, or the ability becomes useless again.

    Or take a cue from Wendy and allow her to automatically pass all horror checks while she is either blessed or in a specific neighborhood/street area/other world.


  18. I will play around with this. I will test with the prior PS, and if it does not work well, I will try her again with something similar to yours. I liked the idea of having to spend trophies thematically, but maybe there's a reason why the original investigators with trohpy related stories don't normally have to. 

     

    EDIT:  Just a heads up, many of my images have been updated and shifted around so the direct links in this thread may have disappeared. Once I get these 3 Investigators finalized, I will start my "gallery" thread for finished characters where you will be able to find the final products.


  19. These are the end decisions about Eunice's PS that I will be playtesting her with:

     

    Pass condition: the same.

    Pass reward: Lore +1

    Eunice may choose to return a spell to the box to gain +2 when closing or sealing gates. 
    In addition, each time Eunice casts a spell, she may now choose to either keep it or return it to the box and draw a replacement.

    Fail Condition: If Eunice does not seal at least one gate before there are 8 Doom Tokens on the doom track, place <fail> in play.
    Fail Penalty: Each time a gate opens, Eunice must immediately pay one sanity or discard a spell.
     
    Does this work better? Is the amount of Doom too lenient? Do I need to specify how to track this (I don't think you will forget who sealed what as it is pretty important)?
    Also, she now starts with $6 and 2 clues, instead of $4 and 3 clues.
    This gives players the opportunity to make use of her second ability if they choose to forego the caster-route. Or at least the choice to put it off until later in the game for a boost in her early game.

     

     


  20. Thank you very much Aquas. That was incredibly insightful. And you've convinced me pretty solidly.

    Also, the rest of you have pretty much convinced me to tone down her fail to affect only Eustice. I may adjust the personal story flavor text to better reflect this, however it may not be necesarry. The impending awakening of the AO might just be enough to snap the reality-shaping effects of her Geometry, while leaving the regular powers of spell-casting in tact.

     

    In my head (I know, unsupportable), most spells (especially cast by untrained investigators) are never really possible until the ancient one begins to stir anyway. 
     

    Thank you very much for all of your feedback. She will begin play-testing along with Anna Anderson ASAP. I hope to bring you more investigators with quality flavor and theme. :)
     


  21. @Jake:  I do like the idea of giving the player an early option to swap spells for a skill. This is a change that I think would enhance her replayabilty as well.


     


    @ Dr. Faust: I originally did think that giving her another focus would be really optimal. As you say, prior to passing her PS (which is intended to be farily difficult), her "cool thing" is potentionally a burden if she starts with a particularly nice spell. Thematically, too, it is fitting with her history as a Geometrician. But as this is likely my favorite custom character of the bunch, I don't want to succumb to oversight and accidentally overpower her. In my games, whereas having too few focus can be a serious hinderance, having more than 2 is usually not that great of a boon. This is particularly the case with characters that have less than 6 as a max on their tracks (because min/maxing is less rewarding), or when their fight/flight stats are already easily optimized. 


     


    @ Everyone: I did wonder how you would play Impossible Angles in regards to one-off spells like Greater Banishment; or activated spell effects like Inner Beast/Opening the Third Eye.  In the case of the former, should she STILL replace the spell after it is cast?  In regards to the latter, it would seem that she should probably cast the spell, retain the effect for the remainder of the turn, and then discard/replace it.  But I'm not sure.  Also, do these out-lying occurences need clarification on the Investigator sheet?  I'm afraid it might become a little too wordy. Maybe I ought to insert something such as "Whenever Eunice successfully casts a spell at the end of the turn remove the spell from the game and draw a replacement." This would alleviate issues of how-many-hands-is-my-mutating-spell-occupying, as well as addressing activated spell effects (Inner Beast). The only question is regarding the one-off spells. This wording suggests that the card would not be replaced (?) as it would be discarded prior to the end of the turn due to the original wording on the spell (it is removed from the game immediately). 


     


    Thoughts?



  22. Thank you Jake. I am torn on this issue also. Thematically, it is everyone's reality that is at stake, not simply Eunice's. But yes, if one player does not pull his weight or pass his story (or as it stands now) has significant delays, everyone is punished. I don't really see the punishment as that terrible. Again though, it may be warranted to provide a die roll for each player at least. Something like, pass a will check or loose either one sanity or one spell.

    Would this be sufficient? Or I could up the pass to balance the force of a fail, perhaps pass a will check and recieve one spell (or a clue?) for each other player. This would create a choice for the player to pick a character that can personally influence each character with her story. The spell idea might be bad, as they can then pass them all to Eunice to recycle, however.

     

    Hmm.  Lots of things to think about. 


  23. Thanks, I will think about this.  And also, thanks for the lovely encouragement.

    I used 8 as a placeholder while I'm balancing and playtesting her. Very valid point. Thematically, it makes more sense for the fail to occur if/when gates are being places, rather than terror increasing. This is the main reason I chose doom over terror. But there may be a mechanic I can figure in, in regards to gates, that would be worthwhile considering. 

    I just figured that even if she failed, at 8 doom, there really wouldn't be THAT many more turns/gates left to open before the end of the game anyway. So it wouldn't be too incredibly punishing for the players. 

    And yes, not sure if you understood the pass as intended, but it lets Eunice choose whether impossible angles discards her cast spells and replaces them or she, instead, has the choice to keep the cast spell.  This effectively allows her to pick and choose the spells that are available to her. The wording may be a little off. That also allows her to be a spell cycler for the entire group should you choose to use her that way. Possibly rotate out all of your utility spells for some magical firepower before the AO wakes up and trade them back for the final battle.

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