Friday, February 12, 2021

Martian Nerve Dart-Guns

A long time ago (apparently 19:47 15 October 2018 according to my notes) I started working on something for Moment of Truth RPG (MoT RPG). The idea for the campaign was a Martian planetary romance pulp action/adventure campaign. Primary inspiration came from the Dying Mars setting in the lovely GURPS Mars supplement (though, pretty much all GURPS supplements are lovely) and S.M. Stirling's novel In the Courts of the Crimson Kings, which is itself an homage to previous Martian planetary romances. I grabbed that book off the shelf when I was in high school and read it primarily because I'm a fan of King Crimson.

There's a weapon out of In the Courts of the Crimson Kings which helps to emulate a swashbuckling mode of combat with divergent bio-tech. On Stirling's Mars the guns are alive. If properly nourished, they produce gases and darts filled with a deadly neurotoxin. Getting shot with this neurotoxin-dart gun makes death a near certainty. The gun can only produce one dart at a time and needs time to do so, however. Thus a piratey swashbuckling vibe is established. Shoot your musket living dart gun once and then resort to blades in a combat because it simply takes too long to reload regrow.

In my notes I wrote that the physical damage of a dart gun would resemble a cross between a sling and a thrown knife (according to the MoT RPG weapon tables, p.56).

WeaponDamageCloseOptimalLongNotes
Dart PistolSkill + 5 (4, 5)C12m10m (2)Ammo: 1, Living, Neurotoxin
Dart RifleSkill + 8 (4, 5)C-1m25m35m (2)Ammo: 1, Living, Neurotoxin

Living: This weapon is Martian bio-tech. It is alive. It requires nourishment (a special food paste for Martian tech and water) and is susceptible to disease. If properly cared for, it replenishes its ammo within four to six hours after shooting.

Neurotoxin: If any damage penetrates the target, the neurotoxin is delivered. The target is racked with pain and spasms. While under the effects of the neurotoxin, the target's throat clenches shut, are in terrible pain, and lose motor function. The target has the conditions Incapacitated and Suffocating. The suffocation counts as a surprise. To end the suffocation the target must succeed an Endurance stat roll with a -1d6 penalty. Once the character has ended their suffocating condition, they may attempt to end their Incapacitated condition at no further penalty.


Initially I had the Damage at Skill + 3 for the pistol and Skill + 5 for the Rifle. Transcribing it, I figured that I would bump it up. In my notes I initially have the conditions of the neurotoxin as Suffocation and Stunning and then switched it in the next paragraph to Incapacitation.

In retrospect, I honestly think that this could use some work. The Endurance rolls to overcome suffocation might become tedious. It could be better to just need someone to administer an antidote and then roll Endurance to overcome the incapacitation.

Friday, January 1, 2021

GURPS Animal: Dire Boar

This probably shouldn't be a post all on its own. But here we are.
I used the rules  for dire animals according to the Natural Encyclopedia, which is a fantastic resource for high fantasy GURPS referees, and used the large boar in the Basic Set as a base. I did switch things around a little: changing the striker to impaling from piercing, since I wanted their tusks to be spear-like and frightening.

Friday, December 25, 2020

D&D/Pathfinder Poisons in GURPS

As someone who reads my blog may gather, I've been running the Pathfinder adventure path Carrion Crown for quite a few months now in GURPS. I've had to convert a number of poisons and diseases as a result, though fortunately there are a number of conversions available elsewhere. While I am going to release all of my conversion notes for running Carrion Crown in GURPS (for that strange soul who also wants to practice this folly), I figured that I would compile the poisons that I've converted here for your leisure, and also so they would all be in one place for a change.

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

GURPS Monster: Weaverworm

This monster was very fun to convert and very fun to run. Had some trouble with the drag ability it's supposed to have in Pathfinder, but I decided that I would just have an alternate Web (an engulfing binding which pins rather than grapples) which some or most Weaverworms have.

Saturday, October 31, 2020

The Webbers

I had started these guys nearly a year ago after I first saw Tristan's Random Humanoid Generator. I meant to finish this a lot sooner, and I think it's pretty much been finished. The result I got really got my mind spinning. I can't recommend this generator enough. It's really an excellent resource for making some new monsters.
I had initially written these monsters back when I was running LotFP. Since then I've started looking at S&W as something of a more default system, so I've tried to adjust them to this. That said, I believe morale is essential, so I've added that as well. I also have the stats for these friendly web-spinners as generic as possible OSR stats.
I figure that Webbers are most often preying on other monsters, so it might be profitable for PCs to attempt to make some kind of deal with their Queens (or the Low Mothers at an outpost). I envision Webbers as having a Neutral alignment, or perhaps Lawful given their propensity for strict hierarchies (I suppose it depends on how you want to define alignments). It is very easy, nonetheless, to picture a colony of Webbers as a Chaotic incursion, and power-hungry Queens no doubt would seek deals with demons or other Chaotic entities. I picture these guys mostly in wooded areas, generally attempting to expand caverns or create extensive burrows in the soil.

Friday, August 21, 2020

GURPS Monster: Shrieking Medusa Head

This might have some spoilers for Carrion Crown. Read on at your own peril. It's probably not too much of a big spoiler, though... especially if you're not even playing Carrion Crown in GURPS...

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Goblin Racial Template

When I was running an orc-based campaign where all the PCs played orcs, there was a great chance that they'd run into goblins, either as enemies or allies (or slaves, more likely), so I made this racial template. I wanted to make goblins a little different from what they were in D&D, but I enjoyed some of the cliches that they had. I mostly wanted the goblins to be more intelligent than they normally are represented, but have some bizarre compulsions. They're actually smarter than the orc template that I had made (although I might revise that in the future).

Friday, June 19, 2020

Alchemical Elixirs: Sight

Infravision Elixir
Gives the target the Infravision advantage.
Duration: 3d×5 minutes.
Form: Ointment only; must be applied directly to the eyes.
Cost: $600/$840
Recipe: $375, 1 week.
Dark Vision Elixir
Gives the target Dark Vision.
Duration: 3d×5 minutes.
Form: Ointment only; must be applied directly to the eyes.
Cost: $990/$1,450
Recipe: $525, 2 weeks.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Animated Object GURPS Metatrait

I've been required to make a few different animated objects since I've been converting the Pathfinder 1e adventure path Carrion Crown to GURPS. In my first conversions (which were mostly, "it'll attack like this and die from this" without too much definition of its actual traits) I began each one independently, so they tended to vary quite a bit. Later into the campaign I realized that I would need a metatrait to handle animated objects. So that's what this post is...

Thursday, May 21, 2020

GURPS Monster: Trollhound

As I'd mentioned, I'd been converting the trollhound that was listed in Trial of the Beast. I did as I'd said in that post: used the Enraged Eggplant's Worg and applied some of the troll's essential aspects. Similar to the troll, I think that the trollhound should have variation as one of its essential qualities, so there should be many different kinds of trollhounds -- especially the troll chieftain's pet.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Troll Racial Template/Monster

When it came to converting the trollhound to GURPS (since my search didn't yield any results), I had the idea that I would just take a formidable canine and apply a troll template on it (and spruce it up with it's fun disease). The first problem was finding which troll template I was going to use. My default as of late is to use the Monster Index of the fabulous Generic Universal Eggplant (sounds delicious), but out of curiosity I checked the Natural Encyclopedia. I had a slight worry about how I wanted to replicate or express the troll's relation to acid and fire in D&D and their regeneration powers. So I looked at quite a few of them and wound up making my own troll. I'm going to space this troll post and the post about the Trollhound fairly close.
The inspiration I got is fairly apparent, since it's mostly a synthesis of the templates I had available to me. The templates that I looked at are: the Enraged Eggplant's Troll, of course; GURPS Dungeon Fantasy's Troll, which was excellent (GURPS Dungeon Fantasy Monsters 1, p.31); the Natural Encyclopedia's Troll (p.73); and finally I glanced at the GURPS Wiki's Troll to help me realize that trolls really are all about wrenching and crushing limbs, necks, and spines.
Something worth mentioning is that trolls can take nearly any shape. They have several essentials, but beyond them trolls have endless variation. In fact, variation should be one of the troll's essential qualities. Most of the trolls that I use, especially those that have names or are plot significant, will be pretty different from this generic template, which should be the starting point. It's also worth noting that trolls could be much weaker than they are depicted here.

Martian Nerve Dart-Guns

A long time ago (apparently 19:47 15 October 2018 according to my notes) I started working on something for Moment of Truth RPG (MoT RPG). ...