Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Looking at GURPS Streetwise

 Streetwise is one of the influence skills, meaning it can be used to replace a reaction roll in the appropriate circumstances. It is an Average skill, typical of them, though Carousing is Easy and Diplomacy is Hard, the rest are all Average skills.

What do the rules say its used for?

GURPS Basic, p. 223 says its the skill to get along in rough company and "You may substitute an Influence roll against Streetwise for any reaction roll made in an underworld or “bad neighborhood”  situation; see Influence Rolls (p. 359)."

GURPS Social Engineering, p. 30 says "Streetwise isn’t the same as Intimidation; the latter makes you seem dangerous and hostile, while the former conveys that you know your way around. "

This can be a bit risky as a failed Influence roll (p. B359) can get you a worse reaction than not using an influence skill, and the roll is resisted by Will. So if you are going to rely on it its a good idea to be very good at it.

Additionally the skill lets you ask for information among criminals and seeming like you belong there rather than are an undercover enforcement officer or perhaps a criminal rival. Specifically it helps you find the criminal element, or those catering to it (such as corrupt police), know a good bribe price, and perhaps find the local "action".

It is not used to buy things (use Merchant) but at least it can help you seem like a legitimate customer and perhaps find venders of illegal wares. Also Streetwise at 12+ cancels the normal -3 to Merchant for buying illegal goods.

Overall a decent skill, but can be risky to use and perhaps lacks flavor and oomph for that cinematic expert. So here are some additional suggestions.

1) Allow Optional Specialization (p. B169) for certain types of criminal elements. Examples Docks/Ports; Gangs; Neighborhoods; etc.

2) Add techniques such as...

Fits In (H) Streetwise-3, purchased up to Streetwise (at 4 points) to offset the penalty for obviously being a stranger in the area.

Cutting Out (H) Streetwise-4 to pick an individual out of a group to use your skill on. Social Engineering, p. 81)

Hinting (H) Streetwise+0 (up to Streetwise +6) for being subtle enough in your questions that observers might not pick up on it. (Social Engineering, p. 81).

I really like this one as its often a good idea to be discreet when asking about illegal activities!

3) Certain perks and other advantages can of course also help. "In the Know" (Social Engineering, p. 79) grants +2 to finding an illegal connection, such as a fence.



Monday, June 10, 2024

Star Heist: End of Mission 1

 After six game session the team completed their first mission. It was loosely based on an old and frankly not very good movie called "Deadlier than the Male".

After the game we did a post session summary and the two players left (one had to go to work) seemed happy. Two NPCs Dr. Kirkpatrick (Ugler healer) and Captain Slater (Human analyst) did a lot of work in the background that helped out. However, no one seemed to feel they were overwhelming or too important to the game. They contributed information that the players were able to use but it was mostly behind the scenes and they were not involved in decision making.

I think that they filled roles the players had not really focused on and did not make any big decisions for the group was a big contributor to them seeming useful and fun to interact with but not taking any of the spotlight away from the player characters.

Notable NPCs..

Dr. Kirkpatrick is the ships doctor and was useful in saving one PC's life as well as providing opinions and detail on autopsies and medical reports. Also helped the team diplomat with psych profiling.

Captain Slater is the ships captain and mission lead but his specialty is statistical analysis, this was intended to help me give the players guidance if they got stuck and to spend the required hours of research and slogging through paperwork that many cases would require but would be rather boring to the players. With him going through the paperwork and videotapes they could focus on more active tasks.

Sam and Snick are the ships engineers, mostly intended to keep the ship running and repair things. They had some interaction with the players but were very much background characters.

Bear the security specialist was intended to protect the ship so the players don't have to and to act as reinforcements if they got into a fight. Mostly background, some interaction but he stayed out of things this mission.

JJ the ships pilot (PC) did some Streetwise, that did not directly help but got them a taste of the bad guys when one of them tried to assainate him with a poisoned cigar. Other than that he mostly played chauffer. That is the job of the teams driver/pilot but I want him to be able to get more directly involved, this is the area I feel the most disappointed in so far. If the player remains only the chauffeur I feel he will get bored and so I am hoping he comes up with some directions to grow in that we can work with.

He with the long name that I cannot pronounce and hence cant remember is the groups decker and rigger. Still concerned with the robot allies and being good enough at driving to make the JJ feel redundant but so far it hasn't come up much. He was frustrated at not being able to use his computer hacking abilities but the players opted for a mostly law abiding team and role which hampers the effectiveness of one who is mostly designed to break into other peoples computers. However, the player is smart enough to know this was going to be an issue so its more of a challenge to work around than a serious obstacle, so far anyway. He did get to hack one persons computer which got them the really big clue they needed to decide the case so we both felt good about that.

Duri the diplomat (final PC) did the bulk of the front and center work as this was mostly a working the people kind of mission. I think everything went well there and he was not greedy about the center stage, just that is the way the cards fell. I suspect his character will be the most useful most of the time as talking to people is rarely illegal and tends to come up a lot.

I explained the roles of the ships crew in more detail at the end of the last game. Paying for a ship and its crew is a bit extravagant so they have other duties. Captain Slater, Dr. Kirkpatrick, and the engineers can review various cases by going through paperwork and making recommendations. So they can cover a lot of rather routine cases as background and earn their keep that way. The full team is only needed for major cases and the field team is mostly the PCs with occasional help and support from the NPCs.



General GM Thoughts

NPCs provide a lot of the flavor in a campaign, which is great but they come with a big risk. For example a spacefaring or seagoing campaign often needs NPCs to flesh out the crew. They need to be competent but not overwhelmingly so or at least not prone to taking over the campaign from the players. In this case I assigned them important roles but ones that are more backup or background. So far its working out and I think will continue to do so.


Saturday, June 8, 2024

The Research Skill in GURPS

 For my Star Heist campaign I expect the Research skill to see a lot of use and wanted to add some detail. Obviously you can apply task difficulty modifiers for more difficult questions, but some research should take more or less time - especially in a world with computers and a version of the internet readily available!

So here is a version I came up with, thought I would share.

Research

see p. B217

Research is a common task in the Star Heist setting, and computers greatly speed it up. The default time for a Research roll is based on the complexity of the question.

Trivial: Summed up in a short sentence and something commonly asked. Search databases are used to these questions, making for fast and accurate answers. Time 1 turn, +4 to skill. Examples: Nearest place to eat or shop for common item.

Simple: Typically, one or two sentence questions with one or two simple qualifiers. Time, up to a minute, no task modifier. Examples: The best place in town for a good steak.

Average: A question with several parameters but not a complicated subject matter and one with plenty of data available. Time, 5 minutes, no task modifier.

Complex: Typically, on a specialized subject, often a scientific or legal question that requires precision and detail. Time 1 hour, -2 to -5 skill, complementary skill bonus.

Amazing: This is something on the level of research for an academic paper, involving multiple refinements to the search after reviewing results. Another skill is typically required to properly refine the questions. Time, 1 day, -5 to -10 skill.

Comprehensive: Sometimes more than a single answer is needed, even the top few answers might not provide enough data. For example trying to research a world to prepare for an expedition. In this case multiple people can assist. Let each researcher make a skill roll suited to their own capability and skill mix and compile everything into one neat package. Alternatively researchers may assist the overall project by taking on some of the workload, in which case each competent assistant (Skill 12+) can offer a complementary roll to the overall project. This is only applicable on large data as with small projects multiple researchers tread too much of the same ground and may even confuse things with conflicting bias.

Computer Software can be a great help here. Most computers will have search programs available; this is considered basic tools. However, a search routine and database optimized for the subject gets a quality bonus (+1 or +2) and reduces the time spent by one step.


As one might note, it is inspired by the Invention rules, with the time and penalties lowered and the addition of the Trivial category. For a cinematic campaign, or one where the person making the skill check might be an AI additional traits might apply. For example why not a variant of Gadgettering to further reduce time and penalties?

As a friend remarked, this setup can be applied to other skills, I intend to use it for science skills for example.


Monday, April 1, 2024

Game Session: Star Heist, Session 0

 We had our first session, which was an introduction. We talked over some things and dealt with some questions. A few rules questions, the players all have an older version of GURPS Ultra-Tech than I which has a few errata and other differences. Notably TL11 for Rainbow Lasers and the setting is TL10.

Some questions about the laws and legal systems among various worlds. Who knew that adventurers might want o play fast and loose with the law?

We introduced the characters to each other and they got their mission brief so they have two weeks to make plans and ask questions which will represent their 4 week trip.

Adam (JoeJim): Psychically linked twins and the starship pilot.

Geoff (Sigretto Leiter al-Biq): Decker, Rigger, part cyborg, and wannebe combat monster with a bionic arm. Not sure how all the allies are going to work and I have serious reservations about the arm but we shall see.

Bo (Tickle): Diplomat and trained martial artist. Uses Escrima with some high tech sticks (neurolash) so should be pretty effective.

NPC's-------------------

Exeter (Starship): SM+9 research vessel, 4g Reactionless, Jump 4.

Ben Slater: Mission Lead, Analyst, ships captain.

Bear: Bloodkatt, 6 legged cat that looks like a small panther (SM-1), old Sargent type (not a Drill Instructor). Knight! making him a combat monster and also ships Tactical Officer/Gunner.

Dr. KIrkpatrick: Healer!, ships medic and a Ugler (small bird like alien's). 

Sam: Asst. Engineer, a leathery starfish shaped individual, very curious and loves taking things apart just to put hem back together.

Snick: Chief Engineer, a reptile man, much more serious than his assistant.

So one of the player characters is crew, the other two are passengers but everyone works for the insurance company. as the Pc pilot is effectively two characters this lets the players do the field work with a solid crew to watch the ship and provide occasional backup. the ship has room for a few more people, especially if they will take bunk rooms. This gives me mission flexibility.



Saturday, March 30, 2024

Star Heist: Campaign Notes 3/30/2024

 Three players, a Decker, Diplomat, and Pilot in the campaign starting this Sunday. The Decker has been a pain, due to wanting lots of Allies and some odd choices. I had hoped to have listed a good amount of programs to help everyone do their jobs, and the ships crew fully fleshed out.

However, the work on Allies should be useful for the rest of the campaign and might even make a writing project down the line.

GURPS Template Toolkit: 3 Starship Crew helped me flesh out some of the crew, though wildcard skills covered the Medic and Engineer already.

What was the deal with Allies you ask? The player wants to be what was in Shadowrun a Decker and a Rigger and wants allies to control various drones, robots, an arm, and to help with hacking. The idea being that a TL10 computer can be small or tiny and still handle a decent Complexity level which determines IQ. He feels its better to have multiple AI on a drone, each assigned to one task rather than one smarter AI with more points in skills. Given how Ally and Ally Group works, its a fair idea. Though Allies are one of the most abuseable advantages in GURPS.

This resulted in a lot of the last two weeks being spent on robot and AI templates and rules. We shall see how it works, anticipate some changes needed.

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Star Heist, a Campaign Setting

 The Magic Vegas campaign I was playing in is on a break and the group discussed options and we went with one of my older campaign settings.  It needs some update and revisions but is bascially a TL10 Space Opera setting.

This group is playing a Decker, Pilot, and Diplomat as insurance investigators.

Inspiration

Ghost Ship by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller for the Pilots and revisions to how I was handling psionics. Basically aside from racial psi people can get it from travel trough subspace and the core mechanics is Wildcards. Each psi trait is built with a wildcard skill as the power talent and abilities are primarily versions of ESP and Probability Alteration.
Lensman by EE Doc Smith for some background and overall concepts.
The Ship Who Searched and other novels by Anne McCaffrey and Mercedes Lackey for an overall sense of the setting.
Harrington novels by David Webber for some of the FTL, though highly adjusted so ships travel far slower in real space.
Traveler for idea of Jump Drives.
Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein
Assorted other scifi

GURPS Materials

GURPS Ultra-Tech and Transhuman Space for the tech.
A blend of GURPS Cyberpunk, Action 2: Exploits, Telepathy powers, and some Pyramid articles by W.A. Frick for hacking and netrunning as well as possessing vehicles.
GURPS Spaceships

Setting Conceits

The campaign takes place in the Commonwealth, a human centric space government.
It uses three primary FTL types. 
Jump Drive (Called a Dive Drive) that uses contrgav to punch a hole into subspace for hopping between stars.
Star Gates for wormhole travel between known locations. It is fast but limited by gate size.
Sling Drive (alucabrd drive idea) with hyperspace highways. Very fast, built by precursers but travel is outside the heliosphere. Ships can use this method inside a solar system but only for short skips and they may get destroyed by space debris.


Monday, March 4, 2024

Designer Notes, Part 3: GURPS Template Toolkit 4: Updating GURPS Classic

 

Another important goal for me with this supplement was to update 3e material that has not yet been updated and was related to spirits.

GURPS Classic has a lot of great material and most of it is easily ported to 4e. GURPS Religion and GURPS Spirits are still very useful, even if some of the mechanics have to be reworked. GURPS Cabal, GURPS In Nomine, and GURPS Voodoo are all fascinating settings that have not yet been updated. I believe this is mostly because an update does not need to do a lot to cover mechanics and other things that may need an update. The settings themselves are still very useable. With no formal update for any of these on the announced horizon I wanted to see how much I could cover to make a prospective GM's workload easier.

GURPS Cabal, GURPS In Nomine, and GURPS Voodoo received an update to their magic systems and some powers in GURPS Thaumatology, GURPS Powers, GURPS Magic, and GURPS Basic.

Some spirit powers however still needed either an example build to show how to update or new modifiers to make them work. Some of this material was in other 4e material, especially Pyramid and GURPS Horror. But its scattered and can be hard to find, especially if you do not have the supplements. Even if you do the GURPS library is extensive and sometimes things are tough to find.

GURPS Template Toolkit 4: Spirits thus has a lot of new modifiers and explains ways to use existing abilities to emulate some of these effects. I also tried to grab some of the more interesting or difficult spirits to make sure the possible builds was versatile and compatible as possible with published material. Jumper gets a lot of love here that may be useful to a GURPS Cabal spirit.

For another example the Personal Power lens is basically an attribute list that lets you combine it with a spirit template or lens type and have a ready to go foe. Secondary attributes such as Dodge already included. I benchmarked these so that the Minor lens matches the small elementals in GURPS Dungeon Fantasy and the Elite lens matched the default Angel character in GURPS In Nominee.

Speaking of GURPS In Nomine I did not intend this to take the place of an update for that setting but I really like it and some of the concepts fit a broader narrative of spirits and folklore or fiction. So I put a few things in here.  If the setting is updated they may get used or they may not, if someone wanting to run the setting using 4e rules wants to use them they can choose to use this or not. The goal was just to provide as much material to cover as large a variety as possible.

Easter Egg

Here are some thoughts on using TT:Spirits to adapt the GURPS In Nomine setting.

The Elite personal attribute Lense was benchmarked against GURPS In Nomine angels and demons, leaving rom for the archangels and princes to use the Paragon attribute level. Different racial templates could be used but my first choice would probably be Imbuing Spirit. This makes them normally insubstantial but they can either use powers or spells to affect the physical world or possess people.

Different Choirs and Bands would modify this, perhaps requiring a host be a Puppet to possess them or Alternate Form to create a Host. I wanted to add a bit to Alternate Form for such a host, including an enhancement to Alternate Identity but decided it was too specific for this supplement. Additional notes…

Awareness (Symphony) becomes Illuminated.

Each Choir or Band has their own Power and they also have Celestial or Infernal as appropriate. I didn’t set out to make powers for each Choir or Band but Traveler and Dream/Nightmare are obvious examples that could fit.

Word-Bound and Sacred Word! are obvious.

Add the desired magic system, GURPS Magic in 4e is almost the same as in 3e, though new options are available. And with that you can pretty much update your GURPS In Nomine to the current edition. Most powers are easy builds, a few require more work that I wish I could have done for this supplement.

Designer Notes, Part 2: GURPS Template Toolkit 4: Example Builds

One of the requests for this by a few people was to make affordable builds for allies. Spirit Ally can be rather expensive and I was limited to RAW but there were a few things that were done to help in at least some cases. However, even a weak spirit has a lot of advantages and is thus correspondingly expensive.

Simple Fetish

A weak spirit bound into a fetish. This can be an Ally used to maintain spells in Book/Path magic, grant powers through Granted by Familiar, and adding one or more Powers (sets of related abilities) take direct action. This is a weak spirit that is killed if the fetish it is bound to is destroyed. This can be altered by adding Unkillable or other traits. Statistics: Personal Power, Minor [-40]; Fetish [-50]. -90 points.

Familiar Spirit

A classic, typically a small animal (and thus less expensive) mostly a way to get powers (including extra levels of Magery or Energy Reserve) at a discount using the Granted by Familiar limitation. Statistics: Embodied Animal [24] + animal template. 24 points plus the animal template which is often under 50 points, especially if the IQ is not bought up much.

Super Scout

This is a minor spirit that cannot materialize or affect the material world but is an effective invisible and insubstantial.  This is a basis for such a scout. Statistics: Minor [-40]; Unmanifested Spirit [149]. 109 points.

Friday, March 1, 2024

Designer Notes, Part 1: GURPS Template Toolkit 4: Spirits (Devotion PM)

This is a very crunchy work and I had a lot of goals I wanted to meet with it. One of those was to come up with a generic power modifier for spirits that fit my understanding of the nature of them. The Spirit PM (GURPS Powers, p. 28) is for people getting help from spirits, not really about being a spirit.

What I first came up with was a 0% rather generic PM but my editor wanted it to be more specifically outlined and described. In doing so I came up with the Devotion PM which is similar to the Pact limitation used for priests as part of the Divine PM. Spirits are generally very focused or passionate about the things they care for or engage in vices or have other traits GURPS would call a mental disadvantage. 

I created several new power groups, leaving a lot on the cutting room floor. The published version has 27 specific power groups, though a few are modified versions from other supplements. I also included a list of Power Modifiers I felt especially appropriate in other supplements, mostly GURPS Horror and GURPS Powers.

The Devotion PM can be applied to most of them and though it is a generic -10% the value can be adjusted based on the spirit and what disadvantages apply. The Trickster power has a specific example of this. I listed some ideas for most of the Powers, mostly the concept rather than a list though to save room. The explanation for the Devotion PM gives the structure and each power gives a guideline relevant to it.

For example the Traveler power could take Compulsive Behavior for never staying in one place too long, exploration, etc. Or perhaps a Sense of Duty to their rider for a winged steed. The Psychopomp power could take Sense of Duty to religious adherents, "Those who died in battle", or anything else appropriate to getting the recently deceased to where they need to go.




Thursday, February 29, 2024

GURPS Template Toolkit 4: Spirits

 Its published! GURPS Template Toolkit 4: Spirits is finally released.

This is my second supplement, both on the subject of spirits in GURPS. It is more crunchy than GURPS Powers  Totem and Nature Spirits.

It is a collection of templates and lenses, making it a tough edit but useful for GMS to quickly put together spirits for their campaigns. However a big part of this book is also explaining how various traits work and apply in the context of a spirit.  So it goes into explanation on many traits, hopefully clearing up some details and questions I have seen come up. Also adding quite a few new modifiers to current advantages.

Those modifiers like Preset for Jumper or Warp, Display for Clairsentience, a couple of goodies for Binding, and many more should be useful in campaigns not using spirits as well.

Some core advantages like Special Rapaport also get expanded options.

Monday, February 12, 2024

AEON B-Team Season 8 Session 13 The End is Coming

 

Cast: The Nomads

  • Amie-Belle T. W. Lee aka Whisper (Played by Curtis): Cold War era super-soldier/spy that got put in the Freezer, because she got poisoned. After getting thawed out and cured she tried to back to work, and was given an “adjustment period”. Uncle Sam called 2 years later, with work… because once you’re in, you’re in for life. Tagline: “In and out without a whisper.” Absent
  • Beauregard K. “Bo” Ratnam aka Wirerat (Played by Brice): Technopath, inventor, and hacker. He specializes in co-opting enemy systems and tech assets. Tagline: “Nice tech – I’ll borrow that.
    • Stainless Steel Rat aka “Sir” (NPC Ally): Bo’s best friend and assistant. A sentient drone in the shape of a stylized shiny metal rat mindlinked to Bo. Specialties are rapid repair construction and modifications. Imagine if K-9 and R2D2 made a baby and it looks a bit like a rodent. Tagline: “Repairs and upgrades in progress”
    • Derrick K. Ratnam aka Ledgerdemain (NPC Ally): Spin doctor and media liaison for Project VANGUARD. Twin to Bo. Tagline: “Well, actually that’s not how it happened.
    • MIA Sentient AI made from recovered tech on a prior mission.
  • Rafe Hanlon aka Nyx (played by Chris D.): An umbrakinetic petty thief still on work release several years later, on his way to becoming a true agent and hero. Tagline: “We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.”
    • Layla A. de Blackburn aka Nox (NPC): CIA-trained child assassin all grown up to be Daddy’s Little Monster. Maybe a little mad. Argues with her shadow often. Tagline: “No, we shouldn’t do that…should we?”
    • June B. O'Neill aka Prodigy (NPC): Savant with hyper-intelligence that may have cracked the universal power-dampening conundrum. Fresh out of the Meraki Institute for the advanced and gifted. Extremely intelligent, but young (she's 16).
  • Vincenzo L. dePrezzo aka Threshold (Played by Rory): Doctor, Mathematician, and Scientist (yes, capitals) and Spatial Manipulator. Threshold can bend space like a pretzel, teleport, obliterate things, and has extraordinary senses. He’d rather be in a research lab than fight. Better known for his work with Doctors Without Borders, the United Nations, and disaster relief than famous battles. Tagline: “I can be there in a snap!”
  • Eleanor C. Bulli aka "Bubbles (NPC): Manipulates bubbles of energy, short range teleportation, can fly on the bubbles, use them for shields or attack and even see through them.
  • Grant L. Wojcik aka Fridge Boy (NPC): Can control ice/cold, but mostly the ability to create ice that explodes. 16 year old emancipated orphan, Our janitor. 
  • Rudy A. Coldwater aka Gimmick (NPC): Mildly hyper-intelligent savant. Stutters. Makes very accurate guesses. Typical nerd, not yet 20. Wants to make a difference, assigned to support duties.
  • Summer Stratos aka Chain Jacket (NPC): Ferrokinetic
  • Vargas Manwell Tilium aka "Impulse" (NPC): Speedster.

Patrols and Intel

Each of the team went and managed their patrols, Threshold taking on extra night shifts to cover for Wans death. Wirerat is fully recovered from his injuries and working on several projects, including things to find and track the alien's and their portals.
Threshold goes to that store recommended to him for math materials. The guy drops hints he knows something but is not forthcoming and Threshold chooses not to press him after verifying he is not an alien. Threshold keeps closing portals but they just keep appearing and growing in number.
Lynch is convinced the end of the world is coming but we wont give up so easily.

We find out that our minds have holes in them, missing certain memories.  Wirerat thinks he can get them back but Lynch and Threshold feel its extremely unlikely.
Someone managed to remove mental and physical records of things they do not want people to know.
At the end a kaiju (not Godzilla) comes out of the bay through a portal and heads to wreck the city.  Thresholds Warp ability wont work near it, though his other powers seem ok and he uses his "long Step" ability to get to the base and let everyone know.



Monday, February 5, 2024

Template Toolkit Spirits

 Sent in notes on the last edit of my supplement which has been announced as on schedule for a Feb release.

I am not posting details yet, though expect some designers notes after its out.  However, I did want to get it out there. Its been a long road, about 4 years to get this out from pitch to publication. It was part of an earlier manuscript where I intended to do as bunch of stuff in one Powers style supplement. Looks like I pitched it June 2020 and it was awhile after that before the contract was approved and signed.

I am very happy with this supplement. Totem and Nature Spirits left a lot on the cutting room floor, the subject was simply too broad to include everything. I did the best I could to hit what I thought was the important highlights but so many totems were left out for space.  However, with TT:Spirits I managed to get pretty much everything I wanted into it.  I'll go over that in a bit more detail after publication.


Sunday, January 28, 2024

AEON Team B Season 8 Session 12 Captured Alien

 

Cast: The Nomads

  • Amie-Belle T. W. Lee aka Whisper (Played by Curtis): Cold War era super-soldier/spy that got put in the Freezer, because she got poisoned. After getting thawed out and cured she tried to back to work, and was given an “adjustment period”. Uncle Sam called 2 years later, with work… because once you’re in, you’re in for life. Tagline: “In and out without a whisper.” Absent
  • Beauregard K. “Bo” Ratnam aka Wirerat (Played by Brice): Technopath, inventor, and hacker. He specializes in co-opting enemy systems and tech assets. Tagline: “Nice tech – I’ll borrow that.
    • Stainless Steel Rat aka “Sir” (NPC Ally): Bo’s best friend and assistant. A sentient drone in the shape of a stylized shiny metal rat mindlinked to Bo. Specialties are rapid repair construction and modifications. Imagine if K-9 and R2D2 made a baby and it looks a bit like a rodent. Tagline: “Repairs and upgrades in progress”
    • Derrick K. Ratnam aka Ledgerdemain (NPC Ally): Spin doctor and media liaison for Project VANGUARD. Twin to Bo. Tagline: “Well, actually that’s not how it happened.
    • MIA Sentient AI made from recovered tech on a prior mission.
  • Rafe Hanlon aka Nyx (played by Chris D.): An umbrakinetic petty thief still on work release several years later, on his way to becoming a true agent and hero. Tagline: “We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.”
    • Layla A. de Blackburn aka Nox (NPC): CIA-trained child assassin all grown up to be Daddy’s Little Monster. Maybe a little mad. Argues with her shadow often. Tagline: “No, we shouldn’t do that…should we?”
    • June B. O'Neill aka Prodigy (NPC): Savant with hyper-intelligence that may have cracked the universal power-dampening conundrum. Fresh out of the Meraki Institute for the advanced and gifted. Extremely intelligent, but young (she's 16).
  • Vincenzo L. dePrezzo aka Threshold (Played by Rory): Doctor, Mathematician, and Scientist (yes, capitals) and Spatial Manipulator. Threshold can bend space like a pretzel, teleport, obliterate things, and has extraordinary senses. He’d rather be in a research lab than fight. Better known for his work with Doctors Without Borders, the United Nations, and disaster relief than famous battles. Tagline: “I can be there in a snap!”
  • Eleanor C. Bulli aka "Bubbles (NPC): Manipulates bubbles of energy, short range teleportation, can fly on the bubbles, use them for shields or attack and even see through them.
  • Grant L. Wojcik aka Fridge Boy (NPC): Can control ice/cold, but mostly the ability to create ice that explodes. 16 year old emancipated orphan, Our janitor. 
  • Rudy A. Coldwater aka Gimmick (NPC): Mildly hyper-intelligent savant. Stutters. Makes very accurate guesses. Typical nerd, not yet 20. Wants to make a difference, assigned to support duties.
  • Summer Stratos aka Chain Jacket (NPC): Ferrokinetic
  • Vargas Manwell Tilium aka "Impulse" (NPC): Speedster.


Prelude

The GM had us skip the planned capture of the alien due to time constraints, we only have two more session planned after this before starting the next campaign. So were on a tight window.
We probably would have spent over an hour over planning the capture and unless he was well prepared Nyx and Nox likely could take him out in a few turns.

Interrogation

We did not get much info from the alien, though Lynch gave us some. They are not really alien's but ancient beings who travel between dimensions and left earth long ago. They are back and plan on invading, though why is unclear.
They have Khyberic powers and superior technology so our odds of victory seem slim.

Planning and Discussion

We compared some notes, but no real plans made and agreed upon as yet.
Threshold got a talking too about copying some of the notes in the old Safehouse Lynch set up. Apparently just knowing the stuff is bad as that can be detected through the collective unconscious. Lynch taught Wirerat how to build a device to keep us out of the collectives unconscious he called the Numera.
We also got a better idea on how to look for the rifts and are adding that to our patrols.
Threshold can sense them if he is close enough. People can hear music if they get big enough and things can come through. Wirerat set up MIA  (his pet AI) to scan for flash mobs or reports of people seeming to hear music and certain tunes.  We will then pop over to check them out and Threshold can close the rifts, at least if they are small enough.

OOC

We got to see the spiderness from a previous campaign. Apparently they can be disintegrated just nicely. Wasn't sure if that would work on them. Threshold has not picked up on some things yet that I thought he would by now but the character does not know to ask about. So having to play dumb for now.
Session was kind of slow, lot of exposition and it had been a long time since the previous one so I think all of us were out of sorts.  Also knowing its all over in a few games might be having an effect.