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Sean Winslow
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Hey, I need to run a score tonight and want to introduce some elements that I have not really played with before. How do people run clockworks in their games?

Some thoughts on Scum & Villany rules / mechanics.

(Note that I am playing The Mystic, so this first set of thoughts are largely about that playbook and Attune. The others have a lot more in common with the more thoroughly tested base game, I think, whereas The Way and Way spirits are as yet completely mysterious.)

ATTUNE

1. What possible value is there talking with plants? How often does one encounter non-sentient animals in this genre? What does it mean to communicate with a non-sentient robot? If the pilot cannot do this, how does he communicate with his ur-bot?
2. Danger prediction is hard for the GM to deal with, and if the GM does not give the character advance warning, how do they know to Attune to detect danger? (unless they are Greyhawking constantly Attuning). Prediction of danger is dealt with better by the Muscle ability Ready for Anything, which has more benefit (potency!), always works, and is free and immediate.
3. You can’t even get more information about a remote danger unless you also took the Visions move, which does not even use Attune.
4. Sense killing intent sounds like something that most groups are more likely to use Sway or Study for. Why so specific? The speaker has an ability that detects whether someone is lying 100%, which probably covers whether they are lying about wanting to kill you?
5. Safely handle precursor artifacts is so vague and seems like something that Study should be used for. In fact, Study is used for this exact purpose in the Stich’s Dr. Strange move, which guarantees safe handling and replaces an Attune clock to understand a Precursor artifact with a straight-up question, making that move hands-down better than taking Attune, and the Stitch a better playbook for dealing with precursor artifacts.
6. Despite being mainly useful for being rolled on signature jedi abilities (kinetics and Sundering) Attune is only used by two of the Mystic abilities, and zero other playbook abilities. It is not even used for all of the signature jedi abilities for the Mystic (Psy-Dancing uses Sway, and the rest do not require a roll).

MYSTIC ITEMS

1. A Melee Weapon that has no mechanical or other game advantages over a blaster, yet is as conspicuous/encumbering as powered armour. “Acts as an extension of your body,” despite there being no game-mechanical or other reason why this might be suggested to be desirable. The description describes it using similar language to a lightsaber, but mechanically, it has none of the benefits (you can take a move to get one) and the drawback of being bulky. It is not even a fine quality bulky useless old weapon… and the Mystic starts untrained in its use anyways… better to take a small, concealable blaster and get behind some cover at a distance.
2. Offerings, Trappings of Religion: These items might as well be “Trash,” for all the interest of bringing them on a heist. They are the kinds of items that no GM would keep you from having for colour reasons, especially if your colour was related to your religion.
3. Which brings us to Outdated Religious Outfit: this is a look, not an item, and since there appear to be no social benefits to being a Mystic in the setting (unlike, say, Jedi, whose robes mark them as being in a position of authority), it is unclear why this item would be desirable as anything other than a look.
4. Precursor Artifact. Unless this is something that I can declare to be a fine, deployable, potent laser sword, what is it? It is not a fine object, has no built-in value except possibly that it “may power Precursor tech.” In which case, it is a battery, and Precursor tech does not power itself?
5. Memento: this (or “personal item) should be a standard item (probably replacing the second blaster pistol—why is anyone other than a scoundrel using two? At least, you could put it on the same line.). What purpose does it serve, except colour, anyways? Does one even need it on the sheet?
6. Missing Mystic Ammunition. Somehow, the Mystic is the only class with a weapon not to have Mystic Ammunition? Instead of being better-equipped to deal with Way creatures, they are worse than either the Muscle (which is way better in this respect) or the Scoundrel.

CREW/SHIP UPGRADES

A lot of choice here that add little other than flavour, but take up slots that could be better used on Crew and Systems.

1. Entertainment. Either this is a vice or just something that one would expect is already available.
2. Power Reserves. So short that ships should probably have this much capacity anyways. Who designs a large mission-critical system with no reserve power? Definitely something that could be broken in play by damage or a devil’s bargain, but so limited utility that there is little to no reason to take it. Should probably be built into ship systems.
3. Landing Bay / Shuttle. Somehow these are separate systems? Where does one put the shuttle if there is no landing bay or docking mechanism? Why not just allow a dual-purpose hold? Or say the shuttle is mated, like a ship’s gig?
4. Armoury. Secure from who? The crew? They all have the weapons on their sheets and can choose them anytime.
5. Brig / Vault. A really low utility choice unless your crew are mainly kidnappers (or lawmen, I suppose), isn’t it? Smuggling Compartments with a 3+ hold would have more utility for kidnappers, anyways. They would also better protect a boarded ship from being pillaged than a vault. Would be better served by a compartmentalization rating for a ship (part of hold?) or rolling into security systems (along with armory).
6. Galley / Crew Quarters. Standard parts of a ship that it is highly unclear why you would leave out or what the mechanical benefit is to having them.
7. Medical Bay / Science Bay. I assume these make appropriate rolls less risky / count as an advantage? If so, perhaps mention that. Do either have any automation capacity or count as fine tools or grant potency?
8. Nexus Link. So, space Internet? Is there any good play reason for this not default, and perhaps only unavailable if broken or the ship is blocked from the network?
9. Alien Pet. If they are more trouble than they are worth, why are they worth forgoing a crew upgrade over?
10. Welding Gear. How is this not just part of basic tools on a ship for maintenance or needed for rig?
11. Rebreather / Survival Gear. The first should be part of the second. I am not sure it makes for interesting play to say that this is something that is unavailable anyways. All characters by default have access to powered armour and spacesuits, so why is a rebreather and a heavy coat special?


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So, here are the final versions of my character portraits for our Scum & Villany crew:

Kaboom, The Pilot. Captain. Less loveable rogue and more unhinged space gambler. +Stephen Shapiro

Hex, The Scoundrel. Biosynthetic created as a pleasure worker. Now take pleasure in the delivery of hot bursts of plasma to anyone who crosses her. +Tim Groth

Rash, The Doctor. Weirdo who wears a stillsuit all the time. Is he on a charity mission to provide free medical care around the galaxy, or on the run from the repercussions of his unorthodox and experimental treatments on the unfortunates he does charity work for? Given the company he keeps, and his loose morals with regard to funding his treatments, we're guessing it is the latter. +Michael Prescott

Owl, The Mystic. Felinoid xeno from a species that look suspiciously like uplifted gen-modified cats. Former cultist, still carries a mask with him, and is obsessed with finding and acquiring precursor artifacts and knowledge. +Sean Winslow
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Working on some other character portraits for our Scum & Villany game: here is the synth former-sexbot now-scoundrel:


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I am working on a character portrait for 'Owl,' my Xeno Mystic for Scum and Villany. He's a four-foot-tall space-cat obsessed with Precursor artifacts. I will put my play thoughts elsewhere, but I was wondering if I could get some insight into some processes that would help 'blades-up' the resulting images, to tie it a little more in wth the source material. I am doing this all in photoshop (I cannot draw), but suggestions on textures, layering strategies, or processes are very welcome.
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A quick question to the community:

Does anyone use my Torchbearer Tools? 
http://larkvi.com/misc/TorchbearerTables.html

If not, is it because you did not know about it (in which case, how should I get the message out?) or because there is something about the way that it works that you do not like (in which case, I might be able to fix it) or just because you like rolling heaps of dice when designing adventures (in which case, you are in good company).

Has anyone made alternate treasure tables that I should be aware of and perhaps incorporate? Are there any rolls that you find it disruptive to look up in the tables, such that you would like them more quickly available through a javascript roller like this (it is usable offline, and on tablets).

Your thoughts appreciated.

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Jurassic World Leaked Footage



If you have indoor cats like I do, you will probably agree that they tend to get bored rather easily and are always looking for new things to do, or should I say, "trouble" to get into! Caring owners should strive to provide a variety of toys or activities to keep them stimulated and occupied!
These are 10 of my cats' favorite toys or activities! (I thought my list might help give someone some new ideas of fun stuff their cat might like to do!)

Catnip Toys

Although we humans may have no reaction to catnip, felines usually become quite excited and playful upon being exposed to catnip! Catnip has the potential to make some cats overly excited or agitated so use caution and do a little research before deciding to introduce catnip to your cat.
Sometimes I let my cats take a whiff of the catnip to encourage healthy play. I store it in a ziploc bag up high in a cupboard where they can't reach it or tear open or eat the bag. Other times I use my catnip to refill the cat toys designed for this purpose. Many new cat toys at the pet store already have dried catnip inside of them and that makes new catnip toys irresistible! Some are "refillable" (usually through a velcro pouch) so you can discard the old catnip after a month or so and refill it with "fresher" dried catnip.

#gif #caturday #catoftheday    #catlovers    #animallovers    #funnygifs    #caturdayeveryday   #Adorable  #Amazing  #Animals #Awesome  #Awww  #CatLovers  #Cats  #Cute  #Funny  #Gifs #Hilarious  #Humor  #Kitten  #Kitty  #LOL #kitty  #animals  #funny #cat  #animals  #funny . #cat #kitty #kitten #awesome #cute #lol#funny #happy #sunday #happysunday
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So, +Michael Prescott just finished one of the pieces from his Trilemma series that is based upon an adventure location (never visited by the PCs) from the Torchbearer campaign I was running. Glad to see it get the light of day, and excited about the life and energy he has helped bring to the site:

http://blog.trilemma.com/2015/04/in-care-of-bones.html

So, Wizards in a Tower (suggested by +Michael Atlin ) is a thing that is happening now, and while trying to determine a modified skill loadout for wizard characters, I came across an interesting question that has relevance to the main game.

Specifically, to what extent do Effects flavour outcomes? Is non-lethal sparring just Murder/Finesse or Murder/Maneuver, whereas killing in a straight-up fight would be Murder/Force? I get that you can potentially kill someone in a fight with any Effect, so long as it is appropriate to what you described, but surely you cannot restrain yourself from killing with Force, even though you can with Finesse?

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This Comic Of The Spirit Rover’s Life On Mars Will Break Your Heart https://xkcd.com/695/

On this day in 2010, communication with NASA’s Mars rover Spirit was lost. Read NASA’s ‘Heartfelt Goodbye to a Spirited Mars Rover’ http://blogs.jpl.nasa.gov/2011/05/a-heartfelt-goodbye-to-a-spirited-mars-rover/

Image Credit: xkcd

#NASA #Mars #Spirit #Space #Science #XKCD
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