Category Archives: NaGa DeMon

Raising Azazel Fudge Character Creation

Character Creation Basics

I will confess that creating this NagaDemon game has meant I have read the Fudge 1995 rules in detail for the first time. Up until now I have been working off of other peoples derived games and their customisations and interpretations.

So I am now writing up my character creation rules and I am having three primary attributes. These are Mind, Body and Spirit. I was looking at that list for ages and I could not work out what was odd about it until I realised that RPGs seem to prioritise Strength over everything else. I can remember D&D being Str, Int, Wis. Rolemaster has stats in two groups of 5. The first are the development point stats and they start with Con and the second group starts with Str.

I think that Mind, Body, Spirit feels more natural when you say it than Body, Mind, Spirit.

I am giving players 11 points to spend on the three attributes assuming they all start at -3[Terrible]. So a character should end up with one Fair and two Good attributes if they spend their points broadly.

A fourth attribute I am stealing from Ghost Ops and that is Boosts, basically Fudge Points. I think Boosts sounds more dynamic and less fuzzy than Fudge Points. Everyone will get 4 Boost Points at the start of play.

For the skill selection I have stripped out the supernormal skills such as spell casting as I don’t want the starting PCs to have access to magic. This left me with 19 categories and about 150 specific skills.

I am happy with that scope and I am giving players 30 points to spend. The default skill level will be -1[Poor]. No skill can be above Superb.

I am also going to use skill specialisations. So Combat would be a skill category, Swords would be a skill, Rapier would be a specialisation. Each character will get 10 points to be spent on specialisations with no more than 2 points spent on any specialisation.

At the moment I have not included gifts and faults. As I don’t have long to get the game up and running, leaving these out make for a simpler system.

For the GM

I have detailed nine broad character concepts with the character’s reason for becoming involved in the conspiracy. This information is for the GM only. They[the GM] should work this into the character’s back story. These concepts are things like The Journalist, The Law Enforcer, The Cult Survivor, The Hacker, The Curate, The Scientist, The Conspirator, The Investigator and The Mystic.

What I am aiming for is a sort of hidden agenda where without giving the main conspiracy away immediately, it is intrinsically linked to the character.

Artworks

I do have a habit of procrastinating. I think of it as giving myself time to mull over ideas. One nice way to procrastinate is playing with the art to decorate this game. I am thinking along the lines of building it up like a graphic novel. Here is the first panel.

So so far this is all pretty run of the mill except maybe for the GM only element of character creation and the GM having a hidden agenda to weave the conspiracy into the characters’ back stories.

If you want to follow the creation process then I am trying to post more frequent updates to twitter, if you are into that.

Demonic Fudge anyone?

I will not be posting a NagaDemon post every day, this is not an RPGaDay sort of thing but as this is the first official day I thought I would kick it off with a post. I will continue to post updates on twitter using the @PPMGamer account.

So we know the rules are going to be FUDGE. It is also going to be objective FUDGE as I don’t like the subjective labels and scale. I like numbers for attributes and numbers for Target Numbers.

I also know some of that I want included in the game. I was swords, magic and monsters (for that read Demonic horrors).

I also want it to be modern day.

So how to get people to go through the hassle of carrying a sword in modern day London or New Orleans (another potential location for the cultists)?

So demons can only be harmed by iron weapons, which thankfully includes steel. That means that bullets are not going to cut it and you can leave your taser at home too.

So this gives the first hints at the setting and mystical backdrop. Iron has often featured in folklore. I grabbed this from Wikipedia…

“Cold iron” is historically believed to repel, contain, or harm ghostsfairieswitches, and other malevolent supernatural creatures. This belief continued into later superstitions in a number of forms:

I can include all of that in the culture of the game world.

I rather fancied have magic based around rituals and ceremonies rather than whizz bang fireballs and magic missile spells. I was bumbling around wikipedia looking up magical ceremonies and I came across a name, Authur Edward Waite who was into some rather dark stuff back in the 1890s. As it happens there are two of his books on Project Gutenberg. I did a quick Find on the html text for words that I would probably want to see in my magical rituals like ‘circle’, ‘demon’,  ‘Masonic’ and ‘evocation’ and they are all there aplenty. His book is hundreds of pages long so I am not going to read it but it is out of copyright so I will probably lift from it to add flavour and background. I don’t want to go and publish stuff that is potentially offensive so I will take the text into Word and then do a Find/Replaced to insert some made up words in place of anything that I do not feel that comfortable with.

One idea in Waite’s work is that Masons are completely innocent and not into anything dark at all, but within the Masonic hierarchy there is an inner church. I like that. It means that Murder Hobo PCs cannot just walk into a Masonic meeting and feel justified in slaughtering everyone.

So I think I have my rules and I think I have my setting.

I think I really should read the Fudge rules in a bit more detail before bending them but I now have enough to start with. If I go quiet for a few days then it is because I am reading rulebooks!

Oh, yes, the image at the top of this post is from Waite’s treatise on Alchemy which just goes to show that there are some odd people about!

WR&M Pocket Edition–A few Thoughts

During this year’s NaGaDeMon I worked on two projects: rewriting Galaxy Core (I worked on it during another NaGaDeMon) into a d20-based system and on a simplified and dice-less (!) version of Warrior, Rogue & Mage which I dubbed WR&M Pocket Edition.

Alas I didn’t have enough time to get either project done, but I am determined to at least finish the latter one eventually. I never had worked on a diceless game, so that’s a new experience for me, and my current draft actually looks pretty sweet. I even managed to come up with a freeform magic system which could easily be used with WR&M itself.

So, what are my future plans? At first I want to get the rules done so that I can do some playtesting. Then I want to focus on an original setting. Instead of just recycling the work I have done for WR&M, I want something exciting and new for the Pocket Edition (which may actually get a proper name). At the moment I love the idea of a magitech setting which skyships roaming the skies of a world where islands float in an almost endless sky.

You’ll probably still be able to just ignore the setting and use the rules as a basis for basically everything you want, but a proper game needs an exciting setting. Certain design decisions are also much easier if you have a background to rely on.

One question remains: when will it be done? Honestly I can’t answer that question right now. I might be able to put the upcoming winter holiday to good use and get things done, or it may take much longer. I just don’t know at this moment. I need to be in the right state of mind to be creative and with my mental health issues still looming and some stress at work, things aren’t looking too bright. But I’ll definitely keep you informed.

By the way, if you have any  questions, ideas, advice, etc. you want to share, feel free to post them in the comments below!