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.

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