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finarvyn

Genesys and Amber

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What I would like would be to find someone who is familiar with both ADRP (Amber Diceless Role Playing) and Genesys. (I've played a couple of sessions of Genesys but don't really feel like I know the game that well yet.) My thought would be that the Amber game is designed to be diceless and that works fine, but it would be interesting to combine the basics of ADRP with the narrative dice mechanic found in Genesys.

Here are a few on-the-fly thoughts on an Amber-Genesys blend:

1) I was thinking that one would use the four attributes (Psyche, Strength Endurance, Warfare) instead of the six stats in Genesys in order to preserve the spirit that Erick Wujcik created in ADRP.

2) Attributes are ranked by numbers of green d8 dice. I was thinking that Shadow might be one die, Chaos two dice, Amber three, Amber Ranked 1-25 four dice, Amber Ranked 26-50 five dice, and Amber Ranked 51+ six dice.

3) Buying Powers would be a lot like in ADRP. Most of the powers would be Psyche based. You'd have zero dice unless you buy the Power, then default to your Psyche number of green d8's when you buy the Power. Moving from standard to Advanced to Exalted might be changing green d8's into yellow d12's.

4) Health would be based on Endurance. Soak based on Strength.

That's what I have so far. My thought was to try to keep the base system from ADRP as much as possible, but to add in the Genesys dice in cases where a GM would arbitrate in a regular ADRP campaign.

Anyone play both ADRP and Genesys? Thoughts and feedback are welcome.

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I'm going to go out on a limb and say that taking a system that is specifically designed to not use dice or any other form of randomized element at all and a system that uses six different kinds of dice as the cornerstone of its design and trying to merge them together is going to be really, really counter-intuitive. You might as well design a brand new game system for all the effort put into it.

It's one thing to adapt a setting to a new system, and it's quite another to smash two systems over.

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I like the idea.

Partially because this sort of thing is exactly what I'm doing with various games, but also because whatever can be done to highlight the flexibility of this elegant system is well worth the effort.

So you've got a good start as far as the dice and various levels, so all there really needs to be done, In My Humble Opinion of course, is to decide  what multiple successes means, multiple failures; what your advantages/disads mean in the game world and what the triumphs/despairs are.  If you'd use the boost & setback, you'd need some sort of framework for when they come into play.  Sounds like that's about it.  I personally wouldn't stat out weapons or armor or that kind of stuff; but if you want, there's a good amount of examples you can draw from so far.

 

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7 hours ago, Swordbreaker said:

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that taking a system that is specifically designed to not use dice or any other form of randomized element at all and a system that uses six different kinds of dice as the cornerstone of its design and trying to merge them together is going to be really, really counter-intuitive. You might as well design a brand new game system for all the effort put into it.

It's one thing to adapt a setting to a new system, and it's quite another to smash two systems over.

I get what you are saying but my thought is that ADRP is highly narrative and descriptive and I've encountered many folks over the years who have said they'd like it better with a dice option, and of all the dice systems I've seen none seem as narrative as the Genesys one.

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Sadly, I haven't developed this any farther. Still in the concept phase and further discussion is encouraged.

What I imagine is a case where a person might have a Warfare conflict, for example, and both sides would be rolling dice to determine how things turn out. Each is striving to earn more successes than the other, each can make use of advantages. In ADRP the GM would simply compare attributes and hand-wave some clues as to how the conflict is evolving, but with Genesys dice the funky symbols would be providing those clues. Or, if a character is using Pattern to manipulate probability he or she would be rolling Genesys dice to determine how the attempt works out and what effect it might have on the current situation.

Again, the thought would be that GM decision would be replaced by narrative randomness and the story would follow the dice instead of the GM's interpretation. Indeed, the GM still has final say in how the dice symbols get interpreted, but the narrative nature of the dice would carry the story forward. I think.

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I personally would try to keep the mechanics as Genesys as possible.  So combat would have initiative, turns, actions, etc.  I would try to make things feel like the books without worryign too much about trying to mimic the flow of the diceless game.  If I recall correctly, Zelazny did generally use a kind of blow-by-blow description of combat, so a turn based systems should work well.

Genesys actually will be good at modeling the way Amber characters's enhanced abilities.  Normal people are Minions, that should be easy to deal with.  Powerful locals are Nemeses.  Members of the houses of Amber or Chaos are Adversaries.  Because Amber Characters also tend to have some unique personal abilities, the Heroic Abilities from Realms of Terrinoth could be used or modified.

The hardest part may be dealing with the variety of worlds the PC's could travel to, and keeping that all balanced.  But I think this sounds like a really, really fun idea.  The more I think about it, the more it appeals to me.

 

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I suppose the big decision would be...

(1) Start with Genesys and create an Amber setting for it.

-or-

(2) Start with Amber Diceless and import a Genesys dice mechanic into it.

My original concept was more like #2 above, but seems like TheSapient's suggestions are more in line with #1 so I really need to look at the pro/con of each method. I guess I'm going to have to delve deeper into the core rulebook to understand Genesys more (and look up the heroic abilities parts from Realms of Terrinoth) before I can make a final determination on which way to proceed. I "get" ADRP pretty well, but am a real novice with Genesys.

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While a first time poster and new to the system (second month in a Force & Destiny campaign), I do have decades of experience in Amber Diceless both a as GM and player. Last week on another forum and on another Amber thread, I made the suggestion that Genesys could be a good fit for Amber. And since then, I've picked-up the Genesys book and see a lot of promise for such a setting. Been running how mechanically one could do a Pattern Walk with Genesys, the cost in Strain and the varies dice and reasons for them (first time walking, someone helping, injuries or exhaustion).

Now it's how to do the Talent Pyramids for the Powers of Pattern, Trump, Logrus, and Shape-Shifting. In truth, I think they will make or break the setting.  The magic system Genesys seems adequate enough for the Magic in Amber and Shadow. The Power Words in Amber Diceless could be dropped for Genesys, since they came from the battle between Corwin and a demon.  Conjuration, or how to create magical items.. I hope could be borrowed some a another setting.

Psyche assault is another thing that happens often in a ADRP campaign, but I'm unsure if that should happen in the normal conflict or have it's own Talent Pyramid to make Fiona just a little more scarier. 

Could someone give me  info about the heroic abilities parts from Realms of Terrinoth? It certain does sound useful for a Genesys-Amber game, since the Amberite Elders are a breed apart from your standard villain. 

And don't forget Rebma and Tir-na Nog'th, Arden, and the whole of Shadow. But I could see the Royal Way to travel in Shadow using Pattern could be a Average roll with maybe some Boost Dices if its a well worn path between Amber and Shadow Earth. ****-Riding would be a Hard difficulty level, add some setback dice if a Shadow Storm is near. Now a ****-Ride to get away from Uncle Benedict could be a Daunting, even if you were able to throw some setback dice at dear old one-arm Ben. 

Then of course, the Jewel of Judgment and Grayswandir to stat out but I don't seem a problem with those two. And being a First Series Purest, I won't worry that much about the stuff in the Merlin books. As to the Courts of Chaos, I personally would just do a loose outline to keep things manageable. Amber, Rebma, Arden, Tir-na Nog'th, and the whole of Shadow is more then enough to start with. 

But this is my first night reading Genesys, and I need to re-read the novels for any inspiration. 

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Starpup, just curious if you did any more with this. I haven't been playing Genesys for many months (the guy at the game store who ran the system switched his campaign to D&D) but I've been thinking about Amber again recently and that brought me back to this thread.

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Shamefully I haven't done more then work on the Pattern while researching other Genesys campaigns for stuff I could use. The big stumbling block has been Trump and Shadow, what talents to give it and how to structure and traveling in it by either Pattern or Logrus. I always figured once I had Pattern down, the rest would be easy but that hasn't been the case. Maybe instead of trying to make this world spanning game like Amber Diceless was, keep the Genesys version more focus on Amber and its reflections to keep things simpler. Having played in a Rebma campaign and ran a Arden focus campaign, a GM could spends months of play in just those two places. Add in the Golden Circle to explore and deal with, and one won't need this reality hopping, Chaos Courts visiting, crazed campaign like some Amber Diceless games I remember.

Right now I'm reading Android-Shadow of the Beanstalk, so I don't know when I get back to working on Amber. Also need to find my Lords of Gossamer and Shadow and see if there is anything worth mining from those books besides the use of their varies shadow world books in any Amber campaign. I've collected most of them from DriveThruRPG.com when they had sales going. 

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A cool thing would be (if the players like such developements) to begin in any setting (prefareably modern day) and only discover the Amber background later. The characters could discover the trumps/trumping and pattern walking (which might be universal talent trees) during later sessions. Ideally the players don't even know about the Amber background initially.

I'd like to play in such a group...

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Android-Shadow of the Beanstalk - So far, I'm liking it but I haven't gotten into the weeds with the Net and hacking, and other game related areas that might be a problem. About the only thing I could have a problem with is the lack of help in what PCs are suppose to do in this world. Maybe I'm missing that page but online I keep seeing people just go with the standard Shadowrun-style or what we use to do in Cyberpunk 2020 (fedx runs).  I was expecting a little more of the setting, but it could be I haven't flipped thru and read that part of the book yet. 

Amber - I did run a con game once where the PCs where members of a British family that tranced their line back to the prostitute that took in a half-dead Corwin during the Plague. During this, in his fevered dreams, Corwin summoned/created a Broken Pattern by blood and right. This nameless prostitute (pregnant with Corwin's child) and her pimp-husband then spent the years after Corwin recovered and moved on, to exploit this new power for their own gain. Hiding it's entrance within a grandfather clock that was kept locked and chained within the family manor a century later, with the PC group starting in the 1900's.

As for the Amber Elders, I decided that over the centuries varies family members because shadow-like towards the Amberites. Their basic outlines where just personal quotes and some rough history for the Players to get a feel about their relatives. They never did get to Amber, but then this family wasn't bit players in Shadow Earth. Using Amber Diceless rules, they could rank  Amber in one stat and were always Chaos or better in Endurance (since Prince Corwin was the king of Endurance in the game).

As to Trump, I used a partial power chart that someone else made and just allowed the basic trump abilities. But even then, when one is deal with mortals... one could do some amazing things. There was a whole hallway of paintings and tapestries where staff and some family members kept disappearing in over the decades. If it wasn't for all the other secrets the manor had and varies family members, it might had been more of a pressing concern. 

In many ways, that game was my own version of "Downton Abbey" with sorcery.

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On 2/12/2019 at 2:11 PM, finarvyn said:

So what do you think of Android-Shadow of the Beanstalk? I saw it in the game store but know nothing about the card game or the setting of Android.

Just received mine yesterday - not that familiar with the setting myself but I’m enjoying what I’ve found so far.  Some pretty good talents in there.  Looking forward to diving into the Favor mechanic and examining the adventure creation bits in the back.  Liking it very much so far.

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Hello!

I want to use the Genesys rules for an Amber campaign. Unfortunately I read the books, I think, about 15 years ago, and read, but never played, the diceless rules around the same time.

As I don’t have the time to reread the books at the moment I need extencive help from my fellow Amberites.

My players know nothing about Amber which is a good thing. I want to start in a modern day setting, and the players can choose one of the four generic human archetypes.

I assume some time has past since the things that happened in the books, but I want to stay as close to the original as possible.

My starting point is that the characters all meet at one place without knowing how the got there. My questions are:

1. How could they have lost their memory? (Maybe they don’t know about Amber but were placed on Earth as babies? If that is the case no memory loss is necessary, but they know about their abductions. See following questions.)

2. How could they end on Earth?

3. Who are their parents?

4. Who could be their enemy who put them in this situation (and why did he/she/they do that, and why not kill them outright)? Is the “enemy” by chance a benefactor who tries to protect them?

5. What is the situation at court? Did anything happen that has caused their abduction?

6. Over what things could the characters stumble (after they freed themselves) that shows them that the modern day setting is not what it seems. (They might be attracted to some (Tarot) cards of a truthsayer on a fair. But what about other things?)

7. How do Amberites “usually” get their trump cards?

8. How does shadow walking work (exactly)?

9. Where are patterns in the Amber universe, what are they for, and what effects can one do when walking the pattern (successfully / unsuccessfully)?

10. What other magic exist in the Amber universe?

Thank you very much for any help!

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1. How could they have lost their memory? (Maybe they don’t know about Amber but were placed on Earth as babies? If that is the case no memory loss is necessary, but they know about their abductions. See following questions.)

Depends if you wish the players to start with Pattern, and if 'yes' then perhaps the memory lost happened during their initial walking of the Pattern to claim their birthright. Its kinda a tradition for family members after their first pattern walk to disappear for a few years exploring Shadow (much like giving a teenager the keys to the family car for the first time).

 

2. How could they end on Earth?

There's Prime Earth (where Corwin and Flora lived) and then multiple shadow earths. If the GM goes with their "first Pattern walk" as the start, then I would say it was either a outside force that influenced the Pattern to send them there or the Pattern itself decided to send them somewhere safe. Prime Earth has the advantages of being more "real" then the rest of Reality (think the Forest of Arden near Amber as a example). There's also the Earth of the 1920's within Corwin's Pattern if one plays after Patternfall, that is linked to the other Amber by a tree (mini-Ygg) near the Realms of Chaos. 

 

3. Who are their parents?

Let the players choice that, or if the GM wishes to keeps thing a mystery I've seen the GM pick parents due to how the person players their characters after a few sessions.

 

4. Who could be their enemy who put them in this situation (and why did he/she/they do that, and why not kill them outright)? Is the “enemy” by chance a benefactor who tries to protect them?

Depends when within the novels one is playing and who is alive. Normally, Amber Elders can be both your best friends and worst enemies and often at the same time. There are the Courts, and countless Chaos Lords of varies power levels (some even near Amber Elder level) who would love to take a Amberite down a peg. In my longest campaign, Fiona was different with every player, beloved by some, hated by others, neutral to most. But behind the scenes, she was a awful aunt to one of the PCs, taking a younger form and being a total "Mean Girl" to the PC in school to toughen the child to how the world actually worked. Like "PC about to see the boy she liked, and there be Aunt Fi throwing chewing gum into her hair". 

But if you need a bad guy, go with Brand even if he isn't the one behind it. Good chance he would claim credit anyways...

Then add in missing family members, unknown family members, and a long list of dead family members that could be faking it (before Patternfall, Osric and Finndo, after we got Brand, Dee, and dear daddy Oberon).

Oberon's Ghost would be a good enemy, the old puppet master can't give-up the game.

 

5. What is the situation at court? Did anything happen that has caused their abduction?

To answer that, when is the game going to take place? After Patternfall, Random is king and things are a tad confused. Before Patternfall, Oberon is missing and Corwin is being a pain and etc, etc, etc. 

 

6. Over what things could the characters stumble (after they freed themselves) that shows them that the modern day setting is not what it seems. (They might be attracted to some (Tarot) cards of a truthsayer on a fair. But what about other things?)

I would simple go with them learning that their Earth isn't the center of the Universe. The ability to alter reality by Pattern is both conscious and subconscious, so one could shadow walk to another earth where their favorite pizza place is open 24 hrs. after a night of drinking. Their biggest surprise would be how fluid reality really is, how they could go anywhere and be godkings if they wished. But all of that is just self-delusion, because none of it matters when you compare it to Amber.  Because the City of Amber is like the best of every city that even was, then doubled. Amber is real, and you or your relatives can't chance things or erase your deeds and it's home. Its the Eternal City, where the Royal Family rules from Mt. Kolvir.

 

7. How do Amberites “usually” get their trump cards?

Walking the Pattern and proving yourself family is one way, the Mad Priest Dworkin gifting one a set afterwards. The Private Royal Library always has a few sets in a glass display case with a easily picked lock. But in most games I've been in, one of the PCs had the ability to create trump cards and would share so one owing them a favor. Which has kept many annoying trump artist alive, in the numerous campaigns I've ran or played in.

 

8. How does shadow walking work (exactly)?

That's up to you as a GM and how they're moving in Shadow. ****-riding is more fast edits, one switch major components (stream turns into a river, river turns into a ocean). The Royal Way, is easier and slower where you only change little things that add up to major changes (road into a highway, highway turns into a super highway, ends at a port). Then what type of mounts or vehicles they're in, etc.

 

9. Where are patterns in the Amber universe, what are they for, and what effects can one do when walking the pattern (successfully / unsuccessfully)?

There is the Primal Pattern hidden away (unknown to most of the family till later in the novels), there is the Pattern in the dungeon of the Royal Castle, there is the reflections of the Pattern that are within Rebma and Tir-na Nog'th. Corwin's Pattern, and then a number of Broken Patterns that are flawed reflections of the Primal Pattern of Amber in Shadow.

If one walks any of the true Patterns (Primal, Castle, Rebma, or Tir-na Nog'th), one proves themselves "Family" and is gifted with the ability to walk and control Shadow. 

Now if you fail to walk the Pattern (you don't have the endurance or not of the blood of Oberon), unless there's someone nearby with a greater understanding of the Patten to save one from a misstep… that person will be just pretty ashes floating above the Pattern till even those are gone.

In the past, the Pattern has even killed family members due to varies causes. Never walk the Pattern without good cause!

 

10. What other magic exist in the Amber universe?

Any type of Magic can existence in Shadow, but in Amber it's usually the less flashier kind since one is fighting against the Pattern to bring the magical energies into being. The Redheads of the Family (Fiona, Brand, and Bleys) are normally the ones that know and use magic in Amber (due to their mother and time spent listening to Dworkin). The rest of the royal family may know a few tricks, but Amber isn't a place for the big splashy spells like in most fantasy novels. Now in Shadow, have at it since you can find realms everyone is a magi to shadows where there is no magic of any kind. 

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Thank you so, so much, Starpup!

My players will be children of the characters from the novels after the events of the complete story. Your suggestions of who are / might be their parents are very helpful. I plan that they never walked the Pattern, and that they discover their heritage step by step. They all were brought to Corwin's earth as babies. The reason why and when and how and by whom I still have to work out.

As they are the children of the protagonists (and/or antagonists) of the court I imagine their powers somewhat inferior then what the characters from the novels can do (initially).

Do you think that a (broken) Pattern could exist on Corwin's earth which the characters can discover eventually? Does walking a broken Pattern give the same benefits as the "better" ones?

This is a bit far fetched, but do you have a recollection if Fiona's (Evelyn Flaumel's) house in Westchester County was described in much detail in the book? I plan to have the characters meet there for the first time and that they can find the first hints that not all is as it seems there: they find files that they were all adopted children with details what happened in their lives. They'll also find a description of a castle in Scotland which finally will have a broken Pattern, and hopefully the players will want to travel to that place. Of course, the travel will not be an easy one...

Now off to create talents for Pattern and Shadow Walking.

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If you go by the novels, the Pattern always throws off reflections of itself as does even those with the blood of Amber. Now to the strength and vitality, distances does seem to play a part. The strongest broken patterns would be nearest to the real pattern, but not same with reflections of the varies people of power within Corwin's Amber. Their shadows, or their lesser clones, could be anywhere within Shadow proper due to shadow-travel and such. Stay too long in one place in Shadow, and you start affecting the neighboring realms for good or bad.

I should mention, its possible for Amber Pattern to cast reflections of itself within Corwin's Pattern and vice varies if you wanted a source of power for the Big Bad. Same with the Jewel of Judgment, which may have a reflection of itself within Corwin's Pattern/Universe. But the plus side of Corwin's Realm is he was thinking of the best when he drew it, of all the good times he had with family and out in shadow and on Prime Earth during his Eric-enforced disappearance. 

Not that anyone in the Royal Family would trust such a place, especially knowing Corwin made it.

Broken Pattern is a flawed version of the real Pattern. It does allow shadow travel (h-riding only), and its a bit more dangerous since one can fall into the flaws (those of the broken pattern and reality itself) when traveling. On the plus side, anyone can walk a Broken Pattern. Amberites just have a way better chance of surviving the imprint, and in the Merlin Stories one can hang spells upon it like a storage device.

Could do a few more things but I need to check my books to be sure.

The house on Prime Earth wasn't Fiona's, it was Flora's and outside a sitting room and the front door I don't think you get much more. Florimel had taken refuge in Earth because Eric was mad at her, then Corwin shows-up out of the blue... then Random running from some shadow assassins. All she had was some trained English Wolf Hounds (or a breed close to that) for protection. If I remember correctly, she lost a couch that Corwin tossed at Random, and then they stole her car for the drive to Amber.

But there is some gossip Flora could had been on Earth to keep a eye on amnesia-Corwin by order of King Eric. 

Something you could find useful, Fiona showed Merlin a magical hand mirror that allowed her to see past the silver mist that surrounds Corwin's Pattern. Its hinted she could observe worlds and events within Corwin's Pattern, but she was still up in the air wherever it's creation was a good thing or not. Wanted Merlin to try walking it, because Fi thought only one of Corwin's blood could do so. 

And at the end of Patternfall, Corwin mentioned he was going to explore his new Pattern. Shame he got captured by Chaos if you go by Merlin's Tales,

 

 

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Starpup, can you give me what you did regarding Pattern and Pattern Walking in the context of the Genesys rule set? That would be highly appriciated!

If you did anythings else I'd soak that up too (pun intended 🙂 ).

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Like always, can't find my notes and I loaned my book to another person but going to give it a try.

With Genesys, there are some talents I know Pattern Walker would gain like Grit or Toughened. As I said before, one can alter reality by subconscious or the conscious levels and who won't want a better or healthier body. So having more Strain or Wounds makes sense for a person that wields the power of the Pattern. Maybe even up a characteristic by one like in Starwars -Force and Destiny once you reach Tier 5. 

 

Then there are Talents that read like it's user edits Reality into their flavor like;

Forgot to Count T3, Touch of Fate T2, Life or Death T3, Trust the Captain T3, Fortune Favors the Bold T4, Weak Foundation T4, and How Convenient! T4. 

Any one of those would fit as a action of a Pattern Wielder back in Eric Wujcik's Diceless Amber RPG, so would make sense to create some sort of pool for the PCs to pick and choice from so not everyone become murder-machines like Uncle Benedict. As how to travel or move within Shadow, I remember seeing some magic spell in RAW that fits and I believe I was just going to slot varies aspects of the powers where Blood Magic sits (T1, T3, & T5).

Don't ask about Trump and where those Talents should go, that kinda broke my brain thinking about it. But any Amber game needs trumps for the simple fact that it allows the party to split up and rejoin as often as they wish. A PC can go off to do their own thing (and keep secret from the group), then run into some trouble and need to call another PC to help, and learn some major clue then they need to meet-up with the whole PC party to share. Trump cards are like these super cool smart phones that allow immediate transport which can either save one's life or one can save their cousin's life with the mere flick of a card and some concentration. Downside, people in contact can mentally attack you and lock down any physical response as they rip one's mind apart. Trump cards are a very two-edged sword type of device, so best be wise to whom you call.

 

Other things a Broken Pattern may do;

1. If one brings up the imperfections of their imprint (i.e. The Dark Well), one can see magical energies and other prime powers (real pattern, trump, and logrus). But the downside is it still doesn't help with illusions or glamours, since those are designed to fool the viewer.

2. Broken Pattern Tendrils - Dive deep enough into "The Dark Well", one can bring forth black tendrils that can reach out and touch things and people to sense or channel magical or mental energy through to affect or attack them. Its like a weaker form of Logrus tendrils that have no real material form, can't manipulate anything physical, and very short range (I don't know, maybe a football field at most as long as one can see the target).

 

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Hello!

This is my very first adventure which I have written all by myself. Nevertheless I need help with some filler ideas. Any suggestions for idea hooks, especially after part one are highly appreciated.

Fair warning in advance: non native English speaking person here! my players know nothing about Amber!

Thanks!

 

The Court of Amber – Adventure – The Hounds of Hel

 

Preparation

The players must choose one of the human archetypes on page XX of the Genesys CRB and distribute the XP as they see fit. Besides the usual things, they should decide on a name, nationality and occupation all fitting for a citizen of modern Earth. It is not absolutely necessary but convenient that the characters live or at least are in New York at the start of the adventure. But essentially the adventure can start anywhere on the world.

 

Regarding the occupation the players should be somewhat successful and have some money on their bank accounts. Playing a hobo, drunk, narcotics addict or some such makes this adventure more complicated and needs some tweaking in the beginning. If one or more of the players insist on such a character background they were ambushed and abducted from another place (bar, subway corner etc.) but end in the same house depicted in the adventure.

Synopsis

The characters find themselves abducted from a gala in Flora’s house in Westchester, New York. They find out that they were all adopted as babies. After they find some more clues and a hint at a castle in Scotland. Than they are ambushed by some thugs which assault the house.

As it is their only lead it is assumed that the characters travel to said castle, but complications arise on the way.

Finally, at the castle they discover a catacomb with a pattern, and Dworkin (or someone who looks like him, as the characters can’t tell the difference at this point anyway) who says he saved them from the very first attack at the gala to protect them. Dworkin explains them that they have to walk the Pattern and explains (more or less) the dangers which are associated with it. After the last character walked the Pattern Dworkin disappears – by his own will or forcibly can’t be said.

Part I – An evening at the Plaza Hotel

The characters awake in the basement of a house. They all wear expensive clothes

 

They can remember that they were invited to a gala dinner at the Plaza Hotel in New York. They had personal invitations which were checked as they entered the gala room. Such an invitation might or might not be normal for some or all of the characters. The theme of the gala can be anything like a beneficial background or the presentation of a new technical device.

 

Anyway, if the players want to they can offer some background for their characters at this moment and why they might have gotten the invitation in the first place. It is totally acceptable if one or all of the characters were surprised to get such an invitation and that they have never before been at such an event. They all have been lured to the gala anyway to have them all in one place at the same time. But the characters can’t know that yet.

Sidebar.

If the professional background of one or more of the players makes it implausible that they got an invitation to the gala, they were ambushed and subsequently abducted from some other place. This could have happened in any dark corner of a subway, bar, parking lot etc.

Sidebar: The Plaza Hotel is totally made up for this adventure. If the GM can come up with a more proper place and/or more convincing event, please use those.

 

What the characters can remember is, that there was a violent assault at the gala. They have heard gun shots and there were explosions, smoke and chaos. Many of the guests were hysterical and tried to flee. One of the explosions must have gone near the characters because they were knocked out, and that is all they can remember.

 

The clothes of the characters are battered and partly covered in dust. They also have a scratch here and there. All characters must make an Average Athletics Check: for each miss they suffered 1 Wound, for each setback they suffered 1 Strain during the assault.

 

If one of the characters has 1 Rank or more in Medicine (and only then), that character can try to heal the Wounds by the usual rules, but the Pool has 1 Setback die because there are no medicinal tools available.

 

As the characters search the house they can make an Average Perception Check. If they succeed they can smell something. With a successful Hard Knowledge Check they know the house smells of dogs.

 

They can discover a library. Inside they can find an antiquated cardboard file. If they open the file, the documents inside say that all the characters were adopted as babies. Also, it is documented which major events happened in their lives (educational degree, occupation, actual address etc.).

 

Finally, they can find a photo of a ruined castle somewhere. Attached with a paperclip is an address in Scotland. Oddly enough they find a playing card which depicts the same place as the photo. The picture on the card is very professionally drawn, and if someone touches the card it seems to be somewhat cool.

 

In the entrance hall the characters can find some unopened letters (from telephone service, power service, and advertisements) addressed at one Evelyn Flaumel, and the address being in Westchester County, New York. The character can rightly assume that they are in the house of said Evelyn Flaumel. They also can find a car key.

 

They also can find some additional documents that underline that this is Evelyn Flaumel’s house. Also, they can find modern women clothes in the main bedroom. Here they can find a revolver with ammunition. Please use the values of the revolver from the Genesys CRB page XX.

 

In two other smaller bedrooms they can find old fashioned clothes for one or more women and men. In the kitchen they can find, among other things, two knifes which could be used in a fight. Please use the values of the knife from the Genesys CRB page XX.

 

Dependent on the player count there might be more tools that could be used in a fight elsewhere in the house.

 

If the players don’t want to search the house the following happens immediately when they try to leave the house.

 

It is dark outside. If the players look for a watch or have a watch themselves or look at their cell phones they can discover that it is around 03:00 pm. They can see an entryway outside, and with a successful Average Perception Check they can see some lights which move along the entryway towards the main door of the house.

 

If the players don’t bother to look outside or otherwise try to leave the house as soon as possible, they are greeted by flying bullets which drive them back into the house and let them dive for cover.

 

If the players did not search the house and did not find any weapons, the following fight will be harder. If that is the case the GM should allow that the characters find some improvised weapons like a letter opener, wooden club, chimney tool.

 

The ambushers are the Street Thugs minions from the Genesys CRB page XX. Depending on the player count and whether or not the characters found the weapons the strength of the minion group should be adjusted. It is suggested that there is a minion group of two minions for every two characters. If the characters don’t have a ranged weapon, one or more minion group should only have melee weapons.

 

The lights the characters saw either came from flashlights or lights which was mounted on the weapons of the thugs. All the attackers wear black clothes, look fit and well trained.

 

If the attackers are defeated, no personal IDs can be found on them or anything else which may identify them. The characters can grab any weapon the attackers used if they wish.

 

If the characters want nothing else to do they can leave the house and area by any means they want. They can leave by food, or use the car in the garage, or any alternative the players come up with. In the distance sirens can be heard.

 

Part II – Long way from home

 

If the characters want to follow the lead to Scotland, they must buy tickets for an air flight. It is also possible that the players come up with an alternative to travel over the Atlantic. That is okay, but the following must be adjusted.

 

It is assumed that the characters have enough money to pay for the tickets. If one of the players does not have the money, one other character must help out.

 

It should be obvious that the characters can’t take any weapons on the trip. So, they must leave the weapons at whichever place the characters deem appropriate.

 

In the meantime, newspaper and/or television news report about the ambush at the Plaza Hotel. There were several victims and the background or reason for the attack is still unknown.

 

What happens if the players don’t want to travel to Scotland? Sidebar?

 

What might happen during the flight?

 

Part III – Highlander

 

Buying more weapons. Streetwise Check?

 

What could happen in Scotland?

 

What could happen at the castle?

 

In the castle the characters find catacombs with a Pattern.

 

Dworkin appears from thin air. He explains that he rescued the characters from the attack by abducting them but does not explain how and also not who the attackers were. But he hints that the characters actually were the targets.

 

He does not answer any further questions but explains that it is important that the characters Walk the Pattern. He explains the dangers (which?) but is not very specific about the benefits.

 

How can Walking the Pattern be done ruleswise?

 

With a bang Dworkin disappears, and it is not known if by his own will or by force.

 

If the characters Walked the Pattern they get the skill Pattern Imprint which must be added to the character sheet.

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Walking the Pattern is a huge deal in the Amber universe.  I'd be wary of having that happen to all characters.  I'd be doubly wary of having it happen in the first adventure.

I like that you are allowing the PC's some freedom to approach their situations however they see fit.  Instead of framing the steps of the adventure in a if/them format, I personally would rewrite this to simply describe what is in each area and react to the player decisions accordingly.  

Consider beginning the adventure with an average Resilience check.  A success means they remember where they were before being abducted, and advantages can give them fun snippets of other memories.  

I think it is a huge stretch to assume the PC's would travel to Scotland from New York simply because they found a photo.   If I was abducted in New York, I wouldn't plot down a thousand dollars for a plane ticket.  I'd call the cops.  The players need a compelling reason to travel there, and a compelling reason not to react in a normal way.  Why not have them wake up in Scotland, impossible as it seems?  On the wall is a painting of the gala or somewhere in the hotel, almost as if they had been pulled through.  The castle is there, close to the small village where they awake.  

Don't have the pattern be a Pattern.  The Pattern doesn't just exist wherever.  It is in Amber Prime, with three versions immediately adjacent.  Have it be some pale echo, a fragment, that let's them walk only a specific path through he shadows.  Maybe there is a "road" of broken fragments, because someone has broken the pattern itself.  

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Thank you! The Pattern on Corwin's Earth is not a "real" Pattern. It was never my intention to portrait it that way, but rather a shallow reflection. My explanation would be that it was unconsciously caused by Corwin during the events in the books. I think those Patterns are called Broken Patterns anyway 🙂 .

Admittedly I read the books, I guess, 15 years or more ago and miss many, many of the details. I am listening to the first (audio) book during drives to work and home though.

Nevertheless the first gaming session will be 15th of March and I have to have things for the first adventure fixed by then.

In any case I want to start the adventure in Flora's house (for nostalgic reasons maybe). The characters don't have any knowledge about Amber as they were abducted to Earth as babies (again, to protect them; against whom and/or what and by whom I did not work out yet (but it will be the reason for all the mess and for the characters to find out)).

To solve the problem of the motivation to travel to Scotland: the Trump could resonate in an urge inside the characters to travel there. I know it is far fetched and a big nutch by the GM.

As you can see Parts II and III are not really fleshed out and in essence are only cribbled notes by now. But I consider Part I playable. Again: this is my very first adventure written all by myself despite playing RPGs for many, many years but only gming published adventured which I altered to my needs, of course.

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