Motes in the Serpent's Eye
MitSE Setting Rules
These are the rule options we will be using in Motes.
We will not be using the Adventure Deck, at least in the beginning, for Motes. We may add them in after a couple of sessions, depending on how play goes and how the group as a whole feels about them.
This is a great rule to add to your game if you’re the kind of Game Master who’s a little stingy in awarding Bennies. It slightly ups the heroics and is a lot of fun for the group. When a player character draws a Joker during combat, he receives his normal +2 bonus to Trait and damage rolls. In addition, all player characters receive a Benny (SWD 94)! One last thing – when an opponent NPC draws a Joker, the GM gets a benny to add to his general Extra pool!
Some settings feature characters and cultures who typically speak many different languages. If this Setting Rule is in play, your hero knows his cultural or national language plus an additional number of languages equal to half his Smarts die. An elf with a d8 Smarts in a swords & sorcery campaign, for example, knows Elvish and four other languages—perhaps human, dwarven, and two others of her choosing (SWD 94). Beginning languages gained are treated as if the character had a d8 (fluent). Additional languages are purchased normally as Knowledge (Language) skills.
Characters who possess the Linguist Edge (SWD 33) not only gain a number of languages equal to their Smarts die, but all languages gained with the edge are treated as if the character had a d12 skill in them.
Lastly, because the ability to speak multiple languages is such a valuable setting skill, a new Hindrance becomes available:
Mono/Bi-lingual (Major/Minor): Your character begins the game with only one (Major) or two (Minor) languages. Additional languages can be purchased normally during an advance.
Savage Worlds skills are typically intended to be broad, allowing characters to focus primarily on Edges for customization rather than multiple iterations of something like Fighting for edged weapons, Fighting for blunt weapons, etc. However, I feel that in the Dragonstar setting, it is important to have more detail, so a character uses his normal skill for one category of device of their choice. When using any other variation he suffers a –2 penalty. Gaining an additional specialization counts as raising a skill below its linked Attribute. So a character can gain two new specializations with an Advance, or gain a specialization and increase a (non-specialized) skill below its linked Attribute. Below are skills for which we will be using specializations:
- Boating: Amphibious Vehicles, Powered, Sailed, Submersible
- Driving: APC, Civilian Transports, Drones, Hover (includes low-altitude anti-grav), Mecha, Tracked
- Fighting: Simple (includes Unarmed), Martial, Exotic
- Piloting: Anti-Grav, Atmospheric, Vacuum
- Riding: Camel, Griffon, Horse, Sandworm, etc.
- Shooting: Primitive (bows, crossbows, etc.), Projectile, Energy, Vehicle
- Survival: Arctic, Desert, Subterranean, Temperate, Tropical, etc.
- Throwing: Blades, Grenade-like missiles
Character Wealth System will be handled with I’d Buy That for a Dollar
Knowledge (Poisons) allows you to detect and identify poisons, and may be used instead of Healing when treating someone for poisoning. It can also be used to prepare poisons and antidotes, although you must still obtain the ingredients – use the lowest of Survival and Knowledge (Poison) when harvesting the ingredients in a rural area, and the lowest of Streetwise and Knowledge (Poison) to find appropriate ingredients in an urban area. You can apply poison to a weapon as a normal action with a successful Knowledge (Poison) roll, and it remains active for 10 minutes on a success or 1 hour on a raise. If you roll 1 on your skill die while applying poison or attacking with a poisoned weapon, you accidentally poison yourself.
A victim who is Shaken or wounded by a poisoned weapon receives a Poison token (if they don’t have one already). Any creature with a Poison token who draws Hearts for initiative must make a Vigor roll at the beginning of their turn: failure causes an automatic wound, success makes them Shaken (this can cause a wound), and a raise removes the Poison token. Incapacitation from poison can result in death, paralysis or unconsciousness, depending on the type of poison used.
Goal: The intent is to simulate the ability to poison weapons, without turning it into a no-brainer tactic that everyone uses automatically. This also opens the possibility for a Poisoner Edge, which, if adopted, will be described on this page.
RAW: The core rules don’t offer any explicit mechanism for applying poison to weapons. They do include rules for being poisoned, but those poisons are much more deadly than the poison presented here, and also apply Fatigue (which is annoying to track for multiple Extras).
Impact: This may still prove a no-brainer if some players are immune to poison, although it could be balanced somewhat through social risks and drawbacks (even if the poison doesn’t harm you, having it on your hands could result in tainting food or harming those you touch).
- Bodyguard (Combat) Requirements: Novice, Notice d8 – When declaring a Defend maneuver, one adjacent ally of your choice also benefits from the + 2 Parry bonus (although this doesn’t stack if they’re using the same maneuver themselves). Furthermore, you are treated as medium cover against any ranged attacks targeting the person you’re protecting.
Edge Changes and Replacements:
- The Assassin Edge (SWD39) has been replaced by the Sneak Attack Edge (SVM34).
- The Arcane Background (Magic) and Arcane Background (Divine) Edges have been replaced with the appropriate Edges from the Savage Vancian Magic book. Please review that tome for further information. Note: Psionics will still use the Arcane Background (Psionics) Edge and associated rules.
- The Mr. Fix-It Edge can be used as written, just drop all ‘weird science’ requirements.
- The Arcane Background (Super Powers) and Arcane Background (Weird Science) will not be in use for this campaign. Note: We may adopt the Weird Science rules on a case-by-case exception after a few sessions of play, once we have a better idea of the impact of its inclusion.
- The Gadgeteer Edge will not be used in this setting as it relates very heavily to the Arcane Background (Weird Science) Edge.
Atmosphere, Extreme Range, Gravity, Hacking, and Salvage & Trade (SFC 26-28)