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O the Owl

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  1. You could build individual rituals by choosing effects from the existing spell tables, as those already have difficulty modifiers listed for you. Most base spells start as an Easy or Medium check, and then each added effect raise the difficulty. Those tables would serve as a good reference point for creating your own effects and assigning difficulty. For materials you might look at the magic implements at the end of the magic rules as a reference. For instance if your player uses a cauldron for their ritual, the effect could be adding the XXX effect without increasing difficulty. Or possessing a lock of your target's hair might allow the caster to maintain the ritual from round to round as an Incidental rather than a Manuever. You can create a list of materials and implements that have individual effects, or you can make those calls organically in-game. If your players have their own ideas, like a ritualistic dance, or self-bloodletting, or burning a picture of their target in a fire made from willow bark, you can give them an upgrade on their ritual skill check or downgrade the difficulty.
  2. The Realms of Terrinoth setting book could provide some context for how to layer style or fluff on top of the base magic system. The special abilities of some of adversaries, in particular the spells listed for the various magic users, are worth checking out. The Necromancer is a prime example. You can create your own spell types, as some others on the boards have done for Enchantment, Illusion, Divination, etc. Or you might leave it to your players to reflavor the existing spells to reflect their characters' unique approaches to magic. As you say you picked Genesys for its narrative focus - this would be the perfect way to give your players some control over the world you are creating together. For example, the werewolf's magic (working off of Primal) would call on ethereal spirits or the incarnate natural world to rip at their foes (Attack), empower their physical form (Augment), or bring forth allies to fight beside them (Conjure). The zombie (here perhaps Divine fits best) issues forth poisonous clouds and skittering swarms of insects (Attack), hardens their skin with rigor mortis (Barrier), or casts their vile gaze onto their foes to open oozing pustules (Curse). Mainly, for your first game, I'd advise you to concentrate on flavor and mood without delving too deeply into rules crafting. The story you tell with your players and the fun you all have exploring the world you are creating together is what your group will remember.
  3. A rank in Cool, Discipline, Knowledge (Nature or Geography), or Resilience all make sense. Possible abilities/flaws: Twig and Leaf (-5 exp) - One Boost die to Stealth checks when in a natural setting. Tied to the Earth (+5 exp) - For every 24 hours the character does not completely immerse their lower appendages in earth, they add a Setback die to all rolls. Immovable (-10 exp) - Once per encounter the character can perform the Immovable maneuver. Until the beginning of their next turn the character is immune to the Knockdown weapon quality, the Manupulative magic effect, or any other forced movement. The player may choose to extend the duration of this ability by sacrificing one maneuver each turn.
  4. @Archellus, I love the idea of the steampunk mechanical familiar. The Dice Pool podcast ran an adventure last year where their magic user focused his spells through mechanical implements, and it has stuck with me as a cool idea. I have my fingers crossed FFG puts out a World of Steam setting book next.
  5. I have created a rules set for Conjuring Creatures with the Conjure magic action. The link is to a PDF on google drive. I used the various crafting rules as inspiration. My intention was to create something that can be used on the fly or to pre-design creatures that your magic users may conjure. Please let me know what you think. I have one player that uses the Conjure magic action most every session, but he mainly favores one summon (a silhouette 3 Pheonix). Up until now I have been running the spell on a case by case basis, although I had planned for some time to codify a more consistent rule set. Now I have a second player planning on making regular use of the spell. The time has come to lay down the law. Anyone else have a player that conjures creatures regularly? If so, how do you handle it?
  6. We live in such a polarized time. It sometimes feels like tribalism has infected every part of our culture. When it comes to art, storytelling, and entertainment in general, enjoyment will always be subjective. As one example, watching 'The Big Bang Theory' (undeniably one of the most successful sitcoms in TV history) makes me want to tear the flesh from my body. @ExpandingUniverse, bummer about your GM. Hope he found some catharsis in giving away/selling his collection. There is definitely emotional value in cleansing what one can physically control. Do him a favor and run something totally different. '10 Candles' or the 'Tearable RPG' might be a good palette cleanser.
  7. We actually have Andor as a reacurring NPC in our Edge-Age crossover. I'm excited to see him in action again, especially as the take-no-prisoners rebel intelligence agent he was before meeting Erso.
  8. Happy as always for more Star Wars. Sounds like Favreau is a true fan, and with Filoni heavily involved maybe we will get a bit of relief from the more negative factions in the fandom. After Solo, the return of Clone Wars, and now The Madalorian, it seems clear that Lucasfilm can still provide a certain kind of familiar Star Wars content, even as they experiment with the franchise (Resistance) or move in new directions (TLJ). I'm down for the journey.
  9. My group uses Roll20 for character sheets, dice rolling and background images. On those rare occasions where it helps to have a better idea of where everyone is in relation to each other we can drag our character icons out onto the tabletop and move them around. I also use the initiative tracker. For audio chat we use Discord, which we have found much smoother than Roll20's built-in chat. Discord also serves as a place for OOC images and text chat, jokes and the like. Discord is free, but in order to use Roll20's APIs (and therefore the dice roller) one person in the group will need a Pro account. That'll run you about $100 a year.
  10. So, it seems that the first mention of in mediās rēs goes all the way back to Horace in his Ars poetica, circa 13 BCE. Man, those ancient Romans would surely be proud that they are still influencing internet messageboard discussions ~2032 years later. Now I'm itching for an Odysseus-style adventure that begins with the characters imprisoned, and telling the story through flashbacks to their earlier exploits. Then the in the last sessions of the campaign the characters make their escape, encountering the npcs and themes from earlier adventures.
  11. Often, Destiny point flips act as small rewrites of the story or fill in backstory, like accounting for gear that wasn't expressly mentioned or creating a relationship with a NPC to facilitate the players goals - or even just make a scene more interesting. Is it that much of a leap to further complicate the narrative structure in interesting ways? I have used flashbacks successfully. I have played an adventure that took place in the past of a previous game. I am running a campaign now in which each player has a contemporary character and a second character that exists a thousand years in the past. I have even brought players back to the beginning of a scene, presenting the previous happening as a vision of a possible future. I do agree that these sorts of narrative structures (gambits?) require the trust of your players, but that is at the core of RPGs anyway. We sit down together to have fun, and for me part of the fun often involves surprising my friends with novel changes to structure of the story we are making up together.
  12. The narrative technique of beginning in medias res is pretty common in popular storytelling, with examples going back to Shakespere. And I think it could be a great way to start an adventure or campaign. One may even use a flashback a bit later in the session, or have the second session begin with a flashback. If your group has just finished an adventure with a more standard narrative order this could help to set a different tone for the new story.
  13. To hit that Indiana Jones vibe you should start in medias res. The group is in the middle of a caper. Get the players spending Story Points as they react, 'just like we planned.' Whether they succeed or not, clues to the larger plot are revealed.
  14. I actually ended up buying the PDF, so I can copy/paste when I want to transcribe portions of the text. But, I feel you. The quality and convenience of official cards would be superior.
  15. Have you ever played around with GIMP, the free image editing program? It would be relatively easy to create a card template and then just insert the text for each talent.
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