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  • File : 1275025657.jpg-(145 KB, 700x1217, 1271291609144.jpg)
    145 KB Odysean Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)01:47 No.10105892  
    I had the idea a while ago for a homebrew game.
    It was something similar to the idea behind Promethean. The player characters are people who can never stay in one place, and are forced to wander about. Unlike Promethean, the trouble is internal, not external.

    The Travelers are people who've traded a safe and restful life for power. By gaining the ability to work miracles and magic, they also fall under the Curse of Odysseus, unable to stay in one place for an extended period of time. Unable to ever find a home.
    If they rest, they start to suffer from horrible afflictions. Irritability, drowsiness, hallucinations, general mental instability.

    With magic, they can stop this, but by doing so, they turn their Curse inwards. If one of the Wanderers wards a building to rid themselves of the Curse, the moment they step outside that range, the Curse takes full effect until they can get as far away as possible.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)01:50 No.10105955
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    This has potential.

    So, aside from being the Slightly Bigger Littlest Hobos, what do they get? I'd personally be fine with just being cursed to adventure, but you're gonna have to sweeten the pot if you want to bring in folks who aren't actively masochistic in their gaming.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)01:52 No.10106002
    While part of it is that I just feel like taking the challenge of making a game, the most unusual part of the power of the Wanderers is that it requires a sacrifice of equal and opposite power.

    To learn the ability to heal a broken bone, they first have to break one. To cause damage, they first have to heal it the old fashioned way, with salve and bandages.

    Alternately: They have to heal someone with medicine before they can use magic to do it, or beat someone up to learn how to use words to break bones.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)02:00 No.10106169
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    Haven't really thought much beyond that, but the antagonists of the game would be anything from vampires and demons to things closer to Cosmic Horror and monsters as ancient as the world.

    Another source of inspiration was Mushi-shi, an anime about a man who needs to keep moving because his presence attracts a type of spirit creature called mushi. He deals with them, banishing and driving them from the towns he crosses paths with.

    But for the magic, my main goal is just to make every spell a sort of mini-quest, instead of players just putting down experience points and being done with it.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)02:21 No.10106568
    Anyone interested in suggestions?
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)02:39 No.10106959
    >But for the magic, my main goal is just to make every spell a sort of mini-quest, instead of players just putting down experience points and being done with it.
    I find this very interesting and would like to subscribe to your magazine.

    I like the general premise of this, but one thing about Odysseus was that he always had a destination, his house and family back home in Ithaca, even if he was cursed to never get there until Position was done having his fun with him. So where are these characters trying to get to that they can never seem to find? What's their personal Ithaca, and is there any way for them to ever reach it?
    >> teka 05/28/10(Fri)02:43 No.10107027
    every campaign session ends with walking-away-music from The Hulk, as all the characters walk, together into the sunset after saving the town/getting the girl(s)/escaping certain forces.
    >> teka 05/28/10(Fri)02:55 No.10107210
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    >personal Ithaca, never reaching it.

    the grieving husband who makes a dark deal to gain the power to bring his lost wife back to life finds her grave empty. She has risen, contaminated, perhaps by the very force that offered him the Deal. Wife becomes minor bbeg.

    He can never bring her back and can never get rid of her. She is dead to him but far too alive and somehow monstrous.

    his particular powers are tied to death and restoration. He can nurse someone back from near-certain death (add truly secret DM roll, chance of Something subtly infecting the person he helped) or Banish abominable things back to true death (the zombies dont get back up)
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)03:01 No.10107298

    Perhaps I can use that as a metaphorical state.
    "Ithaca" here could mean their final resting place.

    I'll admit that the thing I most want to work on is the magic, but until the Dresden Files RPG, I didn't have any clue how I would handle it.
    Now I have a little bit of a clue, but not an entire clue in and of itself.

    I'm still not sure whether it should be 'equal' or opposite. I like the idea of the badass who can kill you with his fists being able to kill you with his mind, but I also like the idea of the guy who heals injuries because he beat a man into a coma, or who can raise the dead having gotten that power by killing a hundred people.

    Other examples are luck spells that are earned by making a sacrifice of pickpocketting someone, or slipping money into their pockets. For a minor spell, you might have to slip them a five. Just a little bit of luck. For the ability to get Fate to cast it's capricious eye towards you, you might have to slip someone a hundred, or even a thousand, dollars without them realizing until you're long gone.


    I'm just a big fan of stories where the protagonists are constantly moving from place to place.
    Mushi-shi, The Incredible Hulk, Kung Fu: The Legend Continues, Kino's Journey, Promethean, Supernatural;
    The Odyssey was the first road trip movie.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)03:06 No.10107362
    To elaborate on the idea of a personal Ithaca meaning something different to each person, it might be WHY they took the powers. Meaning that any other power that they take is sort of a stepping stone, a test, to getting to Ithaca. A man who wants wealth can never seem to find it, until he finally earns the right to lay his burdens down. A woman who wants to bring her daughter back to life can never grasp that spell until she's stitched thirty lives back into the tapestry.

    Or, it could be the place that they go to die. One idea is that Wanderers are immortal. With their power comes eternal life, free of charge. But after a life of never resting, and never being able to keep friends or family--made easier in this day and age, but still--they'll yearn for death. Some might seek it in battle, or just kill themselves, but others want to reach Ithaca.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)03:17 No.10107544
    this idea is awesome, wish I had more to give. just showing my support.
    >> teka 05/28/10(Fri)03:40 No.10107916
    hey Oracle-op, i love this thread and would like to see it explored more.

    Please feel free to relaunch this thread some time in the future when it have a bigger audience.

    trying to properly wrap my brain around those comments on magic and the overall feel of the whole thing.

    also, bumpity
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)04:03 No.10108253
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    I like the equivalent-exchange magic. It reminds me both of Carnivale (and anything that reminds me of Carnivale is doing something very right) and of the tagline for Dead Inside: Help People and Give Them Stuff. Would it be a one-off, or a repeatable? I kind of like the idea of a direct trade...

    They looked at the Surgeon. He looked at them. Nobody moved. Bud had stopped twitching a while back. Finally, the Surgeon spoke.

    "That was some kid named Manny, crossed the wrong gang. Beaten so badly he was in a coma for three days. I almost lost him twice. Didn't have the equipment. No hospital in its right mind is going to let some hobo use their OR. So I made do with whatever I could get, while his mother cried and screamed and tried to strangle me. And he woke up, eventually. And I took that death. And I just gave it to your friend there."

    He glanced at Bud lying on the floor, a puzzled expression on his face, like he couldn't remember where he'd been trying to go. And when the Surgeon looked up, he looked as tired as the world.

    "I don't get many chances to operate, since I left home." He caught on the word, continued. "I don't get many chances. But I still have a couple of deaths, for those that want them."
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)04:15 No.10108437
    I'm not sure. I like the idea of 'earning' the powers, but putting all magic into the form of rituals also has its appeal.
    Then using magic in combat relies on creativity and flexibility.

    I'm really not even sure what kind of mechanics would need to be in place for this.

    I mean, something like "cut Alan, heal Beth" is simple. The damage done to Alan is the damage healed from Beth.

    But not everything is so easy to put into mechanics. Like luck magic. Or changing the shape of things. Or changing the properties of things. Or so many other things that are fluid and fluffy.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)04:23 No.10108546
    Fluid and fluffy are my watchwords. As long as it mostly makes sense thematically, the numbers can go hang.

    I don't know anything at all about the Odyssey mythologically, but here's a thought - the Odyssean can't change himself, only others. So he can't heal himself, and if he wants to see spirits or something, he has to bestow that power on someone else (and, in the process, maybe blind somebody. Eesh). Which means he has to put his trust in normal people, people who, by and large, can't follow along on the journey.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)04:35 No.10108692
    eh, not being able to use any sort of magic on them makes them incredibly useless. Or at least, I see a large part of what drives them to this life being selfishness, and this forces them out of that by actually making it incredibly hard to be a selfish Traveler.

    I'm also still not sure whether I should settle on the 'sacrifice' needing to be equal, or opposite.

    What sounds more interesting, learning magic by doing something the hard way first, or learning magic by doing the opposite first?
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)04:45 No.10108792
    Experimental. Like, when superheroes first get their powers. Think Spiderman movie.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)04:47 No.10108814
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    > eh, not being able to use any sort of magic on them makes them incredibly useless.
    The magic itself could actually be pretty damn powerful (see deathgifting and its theoretical opposite, the ability to save a life by killing someone else). The limitation "cannot target self" simply means that they have to interact with others to get anything done.

    Ah nuts, I just saw
    > traded a safe and restful life for power
    in the first post. For some reason I was operating under the idea that they were actually cursed rather than choosing this way. So yeah, disregard tht concept. May steal it for later if that's cool with you.

    As for opposite or the same, it's a tough call, particularly in an RPG. I'd personally want the process of charging your powers to be more symbolic than just a quick skill roll, but I'm an Unknown Armies player and we're crazy like that. Offhand I'd say that they both have the same trouble - without some kind of limitation on targets, you can benefit your friends and trade that to harm your enemies, which just doesn't work narratively or mechanically.

    Heh, there's a thought - Charging is opposite, but has to be applied to the same subject. So to harm your enemies, you have to seek out someone else who hates you and actively help them. And to assist people on your side, you have to hurt them first. that'll teach em to hang out with an Odyssean.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)04:57 No.10108933
    >>10108253 They looked at the Surgeon. He looked at them. Nobody moved

    I like what you stumbled onto here. The Travelers/Wanderers have titles instead of names. Somewhat a cliche`ed Doctor Who call back, but still could be bad-ass if played right. Player character gen requires them to come up with a title instead of a character name.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:00 No.10108964
    Give up your home, give up your name. Works for me.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)05:03 No.10108990
    >Titles instead of names
    Very yes.
    I prefer modern fantasy characters to take on names that are almost like urban legends in their own rights. Things like The Hookman.

    Actually, it might even be that part of the curse is to not have a name anymore. I know that the concept of a True Name giving power over you will be in it, just because I like that kind of occultism.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:06 No.10109041
    Nice. Before you start your Wander, you destroy as much evidence of your name as possible. Relatives, spouses, even children, they won't be able to give you away, they can only refer to you as "the boy", "that man", "daddy". But a driver's license does what the heart can't, and stays unchanged.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:11 No.10109105
    I'd keep the exchange, but make it permenant. Just add some sort of extra expenditure to hand over the equivalent exchange. Power stat, if you want.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:14 No.10109135
    As an old homebrewfag, ancient on this board, you have my sword. Just save this thread's (promising) results to sup/tg/, as I need sleep tonight.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:22 No.10109252
    Oh that's a cool idea. They lose some of the human part of themselves to become something greater.

    So in return for the power of becoming a Wanderer they have to give up their name and memories. Everyone who knew them in their old life would be unable to recognize them or even remember them. Basically they'd be erased from existence to fulfill their archetypal role, Part of the quest could be to figure out why they made the trade in the first place and if it was worth it. Maybe even try to figure out a way to reverse it.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:26 No.10109301
    World names and Soul Names. World names given to them by whatever entity starts their quest, and determines their powers. Soul Names are found somewhere in the world, written down in some ancient godawful hellhole (like Sydney) and are necessary to finish their quest.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)05:30 No.10109350
    Could be interesting too to have them be able to switch names or have multiple ones. Kind of like hercules/heracles.
    >> Oracle !Z8CM53dU66 05/28/10(Fri)05:43 No.10109503
    The Wandering Jew, Jack o' th' Lantern, and the Flying Dutchman are all examples of Wanderers.

    And with that, I'm going to sleep.
    >> Anonymous 05/28/10(Fri)07:36 No.10110664

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