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Catstacker

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  1. Torg Resurrection

    The difference I see between Spirit and Reality is a passive vs. active split how the other attributes are often arranged. Spirit is an innate quality, best exemplified by the faithful believers who say "I don't know why it is, but I believe in it." Even animals can have Spirit, and it's associated skills like Intimidation. Reality is the reflective mind trying to measure that belief, and finding reassurance when previously observed axioms of the world hold true. Not everyone pauses to consider why the world is the way that it is, but it helps when mundane reality takes a left turn into calamity, like when another reality invades. Here's a way of showing the adjusted attributes arranged into passive and active columns. (Passive - Active - Axiom) Agility - Dexterity - Tech Physique - Charisma - Social Perception - Mind - Magic Spirit - Reality - Spirit Though sometimes I wish that the Spirit attribute had a different name, to help distinguish it from the axiom.
  2. Torg Resurrection

    I also like the idea of splitting the DEX skills between Dexterity and Agility, and also Hellsreach's idea of lumping STR and TOU into a single attribute called Physique. It spreads the skills around, and encourages players to make buff melee characters when the game favours building up your fire combat skill instead. And I think that Reality should become an attribute instead of a skill, and then various reality abilities and group powers could be developed as skills under that attribute. New stormers would have to learn how to make storms, reconnect, tap eShards, make talismans, find stelae, etc, and that enhances roleplaying the unique world of Torg. Also it would make the players who want to develop their reality powers more balanced against the players who would rather develop their characters along other lines, or even characters that are Ords.
  3. Axioms and World Laws, Oh My!

    The Land Below's Law of Wonders allows buildings that exceed the Tech axiom. The sourcebook says that it's because of the Nile's engineering skill, which isn't tied to a World Law, but then neither is the Weird Science skill which allows up to Tech 33 devices in the Nile Empire. Orrorsh's occult can operate at a higher Magic axiom, and its sourcebook mentions as an aside that this has something to do with the Power of Corruption. And like Skel said, Tharkold's Law of Ferocity limited non-violent social interaction to Social axiom 12. The World Laws weren't written with a lot of consistency or balance in mind. They seem to be just jury-rigged rules to describe the feel of the cosms, and so if you should feel free to write whatever World Laws you like if they can acheive that. Having the Magic axiom go up at night sounds interesting: it reminds me of the rules in Aysle where different kinds of spells get bonuses depending on what constellations are ascendent. How about if the Spirit axiom also goes up and down with the phases of the moon?
  4. Superhero Cosm?

    This is a contradiction: as soon as you add super-powers to our world, it would be changed immediately. It wouldn't be "normal" anymore. Even if the super-powers came to light only yesterday, by today the economy would be in turmoil and antagonistic nations would be mobilizing preemptively. The only way to resolve a mundane cosm that also has super-powers is to make them necessarily secret and rare. If we can go the alternate history route, here's an idea: Take the Weird War concept, that super-powers were developed during WW2, and then suppose the only way the war would ever end (and not use the nuclear option) was to ban development of super-powers. Of course, governments would secretly work on them anyway like they do with biological weapons, but to the public the war is over and life goes back to normal. Super-powers are illegal and feared by the general populace because they could upset the balance of the world and topple it into an apocalyptic WW3. The game balance for super-powered characters is that their powers always have obvious side-effects; there's no way for them to use them discreetly. Add modern forensics and a specially-equipped government agency that hunts down extranormals, and the player characters would have very good reasons to seek solutions without using their powers, and to go the costumed hero trope that is popular in the comics. I prefer a simplistic method to add superheroes to Torg; don't define the super-powered cosm at all, and have the super-characters be sent to help Core Earth in a similar way that Dr. Hachi Mara-Two was sent (one-way.) Those characters would be powered through a World Law, so the only way they can use their powers is by spending a possibility on a realilty bubble. They'd never be in their own cosms, so wouldn't ever have home-reality advantage, would always be at risk of disconnection, and would burn their possibilities faster than characters chosen from more mundane realities. Torg was meant to be balanced that way, and it needs a sensitive GM to make it work.
  5. Torg Resurrection

    That effect already applies. On page 118 of Torg R&E, under Approved Actions: "An attack is considered successful if it hits, even if it does not cause any damage." And 0 result points also cause 1 point of shock damage on the Combat Results Table. I think that's about as much as a glancing blow deserves, since Torg is a cinematic game, and usually in movies characters shrug off glancing blows (sometimes dozens of them in h2h combat) without any later consequences.
  6. Torg Update

    Thanks for telling us, Eric. I know that it must be a hard decision for you to let Torg go after all the plans you had for it. If it makes the separation any easier, maybe you can develop material for the new owners when you've got the time. I liked most of the ideas that you had for Torg 2, and I'm anxious wondering what the new publishers will do with it. I hope they pay you big bucks for the property.
  7. Torg Resurrection

    P-rated characters should be superhuman compared to Ords, but I think that the different columns on the Combat Results Table makes Ords too easy to kill. Grunts were supposed to be eliminated by the handful, but there are some dramatic-scene monsters that turn out to be too soft because of one fanastic set of rolls, and no possibilities to save them. I disagree that buying off damage makes PCs too tough, because P-rated villains can do it too. You can also have them counter the players' wound-reducing possibilities with their own, though I find that this makes the players hate you. Or you can send them against an Orrorshan horror, who can mark them for death. The players have nothing to fear but the Power of Fear itself. Another way to keep the players from buying off all their damage is to hit them with a lot of low-damage results. They don't usually want to waste a possibilitiy to eliminate only a K2 result, and so they just take the damage, and eventually that shock damage adds up to a comfortable unconsciousness. A lot of GMs don't like the K/O damage tracking, because it adds another thing to keep track of, but it does make avoiding a knockout harder. I'd like to see a Combat Results chart that includes even more effects that just stun and wounds. I've never found knockdowns to be a big deal, and some weapons wouldn't produce a knockdown result realisticly, like a flamethrower. But that flamethrower would realistically set the person hit on fire, and I don't know if Torg includes a mechanism for critical effects like this.
  8. Torg Resurrection

    Kansas Jim brings up a good question, to which I don't have a good answer. The intent of this thread is to explore and debate any ideas to improve the Torg system with the aim of making it fresh and better. I assume that anyone that thinks that Torg is already perfect is playing the game instead of looking for alternatives here, but if they want to participate by arguing against any changes suggested, they're welcome. I don't think that Torg is perfect, which is why I started this thread. Personally, I prefer the Torg system over d6, because it's faster to roll one die instead of a handful of dice and then counting. The bonus chart is pretty easy to know once you get used to it, and pretty easy to estimate if you aren't. Also, it offers a scale of possible outcomes regardless of the base power level which offers a more heroic feel, while with d6 rolls become more likely as your power level increases, which is more realistic. But I remember running Star Wars where a gun bunny could eliminate a squad of Stormtroopers in one round before the other players could do anything, and that's not fun.
  9. Torg Resurrection

    Here I go... In another thread recently, Skeloric summed up a lot of the old ideas for Torg 2, in which he was wrong that there had been a consensus that having a Psychic axiom was a good idea. I've never seen the need or usefulness of having a fifth axiom, because I've always found keeping track of four axioms among all the characters and across mixed realities to take all my attention already. Most of the published cosms don't have any expression of Psychic powers, so they would just be wasting space and ink by adding another axiom to their descriptions. It'd be like how half the cosms have effectively the same Social axiom, and so it's effectively ignored. I'm halfway to recommending the axe for the Social axiom, but I think that's necessary for making players really RP the cosm they're in, and it's unique to Torg. The Social axiom needs more definition. I can't say the same for Psionics, which are really just magic without the spell components, chanting, or finger-wiggling (which few players bother with anyway.) And backlash does mental damage; it's all there. If you want to have a psychic character, specialize in a few skills and AKs and make up some "psionic" spells. The only need for having separate Psionics rules, other than for more rules to fill out the Space Gods Sourcebook, is to give superpowers to Core Earthers. That's a weakness of Core Earth, not a justification for multiplying the axiom set by 25%.
  10. Torg Resurrection

    (It has no True Death) Since Wraith's Open d6 Resurrection truly revived interest in making Open d6 a reality, I'm calling all the Torg devotees out of lurker mode to do the same for Torg 2. Both of you! If we want Torg to live, we'll have to reassemble the parts of the old corpse and hit it with lightning. On this thread, let's discuss changes to the Torg/MB system with an aim of taking the rough edges off your house rules and making them fun and easy for everyone. We won't discuss the background/meta/cosms for Torg, since these are subject to personal tastes and pop up in new threads periodically anyway. I'll post some topics headings here in this starter, and I'll edit it to update the forerunning issues as (if) the discussion progresses. So that my opinion doesn't carry a greater weight than anyone else's, I'm giving all tie-breaking votes and the voice of reason to the guru, Kansas Jim. Try to break up your posts into topics so that the discussion can wander and yet stay coherent all in one thread. Attributes and Skills Character Creation Axioms Magic/Miracles/Powers/Psionics/Martial Arts Reality d20 vs d6 Damage The Drama Deck Rules/Information that was missing in the R&E (anything else) And since the most fruitful Torg 2 discussion happened way back in the day, when men were men and their blood ran hot, I think that this discussion should be willing to be impolite if necessary. I'm saying we should indulge in personal attacks or break the rules of conduct, but I think that the best creation comes from passion, and the best system can survive all criticism.
  11. State Paths for PPG spells

    Rabbitball has rebuilt all the spells published for Torg in an attempt to fix some of the mistakes in Pixaud's. I think he's been holding onto the results in hopes of official recognition, but if you PM him he might be willing to share his work with you.
  12. Skel, there's been a lot of discussioin going on, it's just been about d6 instead of Torg. And that could be a good thing, because Open d6 might be the vehicle for an updated and balanced set of rules to present Torg 2 with. I'm not a big fan of the d6 system myself and so I haven't been a part of that discussion, but at least its moving forward and is available online. So I'm confident that there will be a Torg d6 section in Open d6 that will offer rules for crossing realities and disconnecting, etc. You should contribute to that if you want something to hold your interest for a while. As for hoping for a shiny printed Torg, with balanced rules and updated cosms and set in the 21st century, I think that hope was lost on a boat from China. Hellsreach is already swamped with other commitments, and now that Open d6 has grown too big for him to sit on, he's going to guard Torg all the more. If I remember correctly, the whole reason he bought WEG was so that he could publish his own version of Torg 2. He might finish it for his grandchildren to play. In the meanwhile, there are Torg GMs out there who have all made their own houserules and alternate realities, so there's already Torg 2s out there. We're babysitting it, and if we're quiet, it's because the baby is sleeping.
  13. Help me with a Skynet/Terminator cosm...

    It's interesting so far. The law of the survival of the fittest makes ords harder to kill, which is an advantage to unliving constructs which can't be p-rated. I'm not sure of whether the law of man's fate will work, but it does balance the advantage of the first law. The law of the hunter and the hunted is interesting, but it's missing a definition of who those are. How about: "Once per adventure, each character may designate one target as their hunted. For the rest of the game, the hunter gains +3 to Test and Intimidation attempts against the hunted, while the hunted gains +3 to Stealth and Taunt attempts." I changed the Perception check to Taunt, because a PER boost made it better to be the hunted than the hunter. Or is that what you want?
  14. Torg -- how does it work?

    I've always thought of this premise as one of Torg's great virtues: For new players I don't have to explain the expansive metastory behind Torg, I just ask them what they kind of character they want to play, and then I work from there. Just about any character idea can work in one of Torg's realities, so every player gets to have their uber-character and play it too. It isn't necessary to have balance between the characters unless they're fighting one another, and that isn't what Torg is about. Torg is cinematic, and so there will always be one character that takes the spotlight while the other characters are out of focus. The challenge for GMs is to give opportunities for each player to have their moments to shine, while keeping the story interesting for everyone. If one player thinks that he can dominate the game by having the biggest gun, then it's time to have a mystery to solve, a chase to run, or actual roleplaying:eek:. An argument about whether a ninja or a technodemon was the more powerful character would be moot if both were trapped in an ancient temple's pit trap, that neither of them could escape because they had spent all their adds on combat skills. Let them be resuced by a girl who can decipher the clues because she has the Scholar(archaeology) skill.
  15. Whill Welcomes His Newborn Boy!

    Congratulations, Whill! I'm glad your boy is big and healthy.
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