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Travis Stout
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Travis Stout

Rules Arguments  - 
 
The Darkest Cosmos whispers, and my soul is moved to expound upon fuliginous secrets.

The Levining
Perma-death is not the only thing Immortals fear when they duel their kindred in rain-slicked alleys and shadown rooftops. The taking of another Immortal's head is an act fraught with power, at once holy communion and darkest blasphemy. To the victor go the spoils, it is said, and among Immortals the spoils are known as the Levining. In a storm of lightning, explosions, and shrieking, phantasmal mists, the victor absorbs a part of the vanquished Immortal's essence and, if the dark lore of House Corvus is to be believed, a part of their soul.

When an Immortal perma-kills another Immortal, she has the chance to steal some of her victim's power. At the moment of decapitation, the victor rolls her Grandeur Rank, while the vanquished rolls a dicepool equal to the difference between the duelists' Grandeur Ranks. It doesn't matter whether the vanquished's Grandeur Rank is larger or smaller; weakling Immortals who manage to slay their betters find it an experience not unlike trying to dam a river with a bedsheet: the great flow simply overwhelms the effort to arrest it and flows on, heedless. Similarly, mighty ancients who pick off newly-born Immortals find the experience akin to pouring a thimbulful of brandy into a vast ocean of older, more refined brandy. Only between equals does the ancient Lex Duello find its truest expression. Also, because Immortals are dark, brooding souls with rich emotional ties, this only works with someone you truly love or truly hate. Otherwise, no juice.

But if you do, you can guzzle their Levining down like pop.

Critical hit: Gain a Mark in a Trait the vanquished had more Marks in than you.
Normal hit: Gain a Mark in a Skill the vanquished had more Marks in than you.
Weak hit/tie: Gain one of the vanquished's Edges.
Big failure: A Black Levining occurs!

As part of the Levining, the victor learns all of the vanquished's Trait and Skill ratings and Edges. If the victor outranks the Vanquished in every applicable Trait or Skill, she instead steals an Edge. If the vanquished has no Edges the victor lacks, she loses one Grandeur Rank for wasting everybody's time.

The Black Levining
Spoken of in fearful whispers among Immortals, the Black Levining is when something goes catastrophically, supernaturally wrong with the Levining. When a Black Levining occurs, roll on the following table to determine the effect:

1 - Secret Holy Ground: The site of the duel was consecrated once, and Holy Ground is forever. Lose 3 Grandeur Ranks for dishonoring the Lex Duello.
2 - Humiliating Levining: Good news: You get the results of a weak hit/tie on the Levining. Bad news: You poop your pants or otherwise humiliate yourself. Lose 1 Grandeur Rank.
3 - Reverse Levining: Lose one Mark in a Trait or Skill the vanquished had fewer Marks in than you. If the vanquished totally outclasses you, you got lucky.
4 - Reincarnation: The vanquished's soul escapes and is immediately reborn. Fate will ensure that the reincarnation not only hates you, but will become a supernatural being capable of standing against you. Roll 2d10: that's how many years it will be before your reincarnated foe returns to vex you. (Improbably low numbers indicate magical aging spells, alternate dimensions, or similar fuckery.)
5 - De-Throned: Replace your Throne of Comfort with the vanquished's.
6 - Total Protonic Reversal: Your personality completely inverts: villains become heroes, heroes become villains, and so forth. Rewrite your Inner Deal to reflect this change. If you're good now, replace your Kickass Wardrobe with "Kickass Wardrobe in White." If you've gone evil, replace it with "Leather Pants and Eyeliner."
7 - Harvey: A shard of the vanquished's personality takes up residence in your mind. Only you can see or hear it, and it can't really interact with the world, but it sure is annoying. Any time you'd roll an unopposed action, the SM resists with the vanquished's relevant dice pool instead of a difficulty, if it's higher.
8 - Insolatis Dies Veneris: You're still you, but holy shit, you look just like the guy you killed! Good luck convincing anybody you're really you.
9 - Possession!: The vanquished soul overwhelms yours and your identity is wholly replaced. Keep your Traits but replace your Saga and Skills with those of your vanquished foe. You're him now. Have fun.
10 - Exploding Dice: Something in the scene explodes. Spoiler alert: It's you. Good thing you're Immortal.

Other Supernaturals
Immortals aren't the only ones who can steal power from their kind. Other supernaturals have ways of doing the same. In all cases, you have to perma-kill the victim first, and roll as described above. The SM should use good roleplaying to rename and adjust the Black Levining table as appropriate.

Oh, and one final note: While you're under no obligation to keep it in your pants, in this case you do have to keep it in the family. Only supernaturals of like kind can steal each others' power.

Vampires: A vampire must drink every last drop of blood in her victim's body, in a foul practice their undead kind term "Daimonerie."

Werebeasts: Werebeasts have to crack open the vanquished's ribs, then tear out and eat her still-beating heart. (Yeah, it's still beating even though she's been perma-killed. That's how hardcore werebeasts are.) Werebeasts call this process heart-eating, because they're really not fancy. It's said that this is why there are no wereherbivores of consequence in the Darkest Cosmos.

Technomages: They scoop out the vanquished's brain, put it in a jar, then download it into their cyberjacks. Technomages call this "Juicing," "Squeegeeing," or "Brain-O."

Ghosts: Ghosts have to inhale the plasmic, misty vapor the vanquished dissolves into on perma-death. They call this the Atramentous Breath if they're being fancy, "doing the dead" or "huffing Casper" if not.

Fey-Touched: The Fae-Touched are special little snowflakes, because they have to lay the groundwork for Recursive Bullshit (as they call it) before perma-killing their victim. The Feytouched first have to trick their victim into agreeing to a binding contract the terms of which are impossible to fulfill: to drown someone in air, maybe, or write a pop song that doesn't blow. Once the contract is agreed to, the faeTouched can then perma-kill the victim and steal her power.
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Kit La Touche's profile photoRyan Macklin's profile photoTravis Stout's profile photo
8 comments
 
Well, with Car Wizards out now, it's clearly time to update the Levining rules to include them.

Car Wizards: To take a Car Wizard's Levining, you have to totally trash his Awesome Ride (Or whatever Kickass Ride he's driving at the moment) in a race for pink slips. Then you kill him. Then you set fire to the gas tank and send him, his ride, and the pink slip to Valhalla. Huffing chrome spraypaint beforehand gives you a free Boost.
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Travis Stout

Discussion  - 
 
Apologies if this has already been asked and I just didn't see it, but does Stress "wrap around" if you end up taking Trauma before you've marked off all the Stress to avoid an Effect?

e.g. Frost is sitting at 6 Stress and flubs a resist roll to avoid being shanked (1-3 result, 4 Stress to avoid). Two Stress is enough to push him over to his first Trauma and clear his Stress track, but does he have to soak the remaining two Stress on his "new" Stress track, or does ticking Trauma absorb all Stress from the current hit?
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Adam Minnie's profile photoIvan Vaghi's profile photoJason Eley's profile photoJohn Harper's profile photo
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Yep, what Jason said. It doesn't wrap around.
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Travis Stout

Discussion  - 
 
So I've been working on a thing lately. Behold Dungeon World Dark Sun!

https://drive.google.com/?tab=mo&authuser=0#folders/0BwQBDcsLI0e-ZVVzeGRFR2pxUW8

Classes doc is the Dark-Sun-ized versions of the core DW classes. Mostly it's new blurbs, racial/alignment moves, and bonds, but there are also some new moves and stuff swapped around between classes (e.g. the bard gets the thief's poison-related moves, while the thief gets... something I haven't decided yet).

Gladiator doc is a new class. Big thanks to the folks over on the Something Awful Traditional Games forum for constructive feedback, suggestions, and sanity checks.

Misc. Stuff is currently just a junk doc, a place to put ideas that come to me so I don't forget them.
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Jeremy Friesen's profile photoTravis Stout's profile photoChristopher Grau's profile photoRobert Adducci's profile photo
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The only thing I'd do to make a traditional d&d gladiator would be change races and gear. 
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Travis Stout

Discussion  - 
 
Something just occurred to me as I reread the Action descriptions in the Quickstart: As it stands, almost every Action is a verb. Which is cool, it makes it easy to grok what they're about and helps encourage mechanical statements that flow more readily in conversation (e.g. "I Prowl past the guard" vs. "I use Stealth to sneak past the guard.")

The one exception right now is Mayhem. Which is a great term, don't get me wrong, but as the one noun in a list of verbs it sticks out to me. Now, maybe I've just been watching a little too much Archer lately, but might I humbly suggest, in lieu of "Mayhem," the Action be called "Rampage?"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cR-WiGKZtg
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Travis Stout's profile photoJohn Harper's profile photoNathan Roberts's profile photoStefan Grambart's profile photo
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If you're going to change it to a verb, I agree that "wreck" is very clear.
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Travis Stout

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If it's any consolation, I prefer the sweetbreads.
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In his circles
93 people
Have him in circles
393 people
Dallas M's profile photo
Eloy Cintron's profile photo
asha singham's profile photo
Mark Stone's profile photo
Magpie Games's profile photo
Eric Aubey's profile photo
Jeremy Kostiew's profile photo
Chris Wiegand's profile photo
Filamena Young's profile photo
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  • Undead Labs
    Writer, 2011 - present
  • Obsidian Entertainment
    Designer, 2005 - 2011
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