Posts Tagged ‘ Stars Without Number ’

P Is for Pithikosophobic

pithikosophobic: (adj.) abnormally or persistently afraid of monkeys

Mugatos are large, intimidating animals that can reach a height of six and one-half feet (not counting the cranial horn). Covered by a thick pelt of white fur all over their bodies with the exception of their faces and hands, they are similar to the great apes of Earth in their physical proportions and prehensile hands and feet. All of their teeth are sharp and serrated, and their fangs contained a strong venom that can be fatal within a matter of hours. Mugatos have large, thick horns projecting from the tops of their craniums as well as smaller spikes running down the spine.

Mugatos’ natural habitats cover tropical or subtropical forests covering a wide range of elevations from montane cloud forests (7,200–14,100 feet above sea level) to dense forests and lowland swamps and marshes as low as sea level. These creatures live in groups called troops. Troops tend to be made of one adult male and multiple adult females and their offspring. Mugato lifespan is normally between 35 and 40 years.

Mugato
Armor Class: 4
Hit Dice: 8
Attack Bonus: +10
Damage: 1d8 bite
No. Appearing: 1d4
Saving Throw: 11+
Movement: 30 ft.
Morale: 11

Mugato Venom: Toxicity 10, Interval 30 minutes, Virulence 3, Damage 1d6

April 18th, 2014  in RPG No Comments »

N Is for Nascent

nascent: (adj.) just coming into existence and beginning to display signs of future potential

Spacers first encountered nyotagomas during the early decades of interstellar travel as humanity slowly recovered from the Scream’s devastation. The total absence of nyotagomas from surviving pre-Scream records led many to conclude that this species is either a mutation of a previously benign creature, or else nyotagomas entered human-inhabited space as a result of the Scream. Whatever the truth, nyotagomas proved too dangerous to be left alone, and a genocidal program was launched against them. The program seemed successful after several hard-fought years. Attacks on spacers and orbital installations by nyotagomas dwindled to nearly none at all.

Stellae Zaibatsu, an industrial conglomerate focused on planetary mining and metallurgy, took a keen interest in nyotagoma physiology and reproduction. The organism’s ability to survive in the hard vacuum intrigued corporate researchers, who sought better ways for miners to live and work in environments often deadly to humans. As a result, Stellae Zaibatsu xenogengineers made a remarkable discovery.

Nyotagoma reproduce asexually via budding. The adult organism submerges itself in a marine environment and produces several immature organisms, which bud from the parent’s body near the base of its tentacles. After a brief period of growth, these buds separate from the parent, becoming independent marine creatures. If these buds are harvested and subjected to the proper combination of chemicals and genetic manipulation, they cease maturing and enter a symbiotic stage which enables the organism to be grafted onto a human host.

The nyotagoma symbiote, or Nyosym (available in many tech level 4 markets for 10,000 credits), integrates itself with its host’s body and helps regulate the host’s metabolism. A Nyosym host’s gains a +2 bonus to saving throws against toxins and biological hazards. He also gains +1 hit point per Hit Die. These hit points are lost before the host’s own hit points, at a rate of 1 hit point per die of damage inflicted. For example, a host suffering 7 points of damage from 2d6 points of damage would suffer 5 hit points of damage while the Nyosym’s bonus hit points are depleted by 2 points.

Any time a host fails a saving throw versus a toxin or biological host or suffers sufficient damage to deplete the Nyosym’s bonus hit points, the Nyosym has a 25% chance of dying. Should this happen, emergency surgery is necessary to remove the dead organism before infection sets in. Otherwise, a Nyosym with no bonus hit points remaining becomes dormant, recovering 1 hit point per day. The host receives no benefits from a dormant Nyosym.

Adult nyotagomas remain rare in inhabited space, which is a good thing for spacers since adult nyotagomas are highly intelligent and extremely dangerous. In addition to the impressive stats below, a nyotagoma has an effective 16 Intelligence. It can survive in a hard vacuum with ease. It is immune to the hazards of outer space, such as the vacuum, cosmic radiation, et cetera. Extreme conditions, such as flying too close to a star, still prove disastrous. A nyotagoma can fly through outer space as if it were a drive-1 rated starship. These creatures always succeed at Navigation checks. It has extremely acute vision, able to see emissions throughout the entire electromagnetic spectrum. If a nyotagoma forgoes its normal attacks, it can make a single devastating attack 2d12 points of damage that affects inanimate objects like a gunnery weapon.

Nyotagoma
Armor Class: 2
Hit Dice: 10
Attack Bonus: +18/+18
Damage: 1d12/1d12 hooked tentacle
No. Appearing: 1d4
Saving Throw: 10+
Movement: 40 ft. fly
Morale: 12

April 16th, 2014  in RPG No Comments »

J Is for Jaded

jaded: (adj.) tired, bored, or lacking enthusiasm, typically after having had too much of something

Yeşim Taşı hails from Glædwine, where she grew up in modest circumstances for the first couple of decades of her life. When Yeşim was in her late teens, she scored “moderate potential” on psychic aptitude tests, but was later rejected from academy studies due to a “lack of discipline and moral seriousness”.

Yeşim’s psychic aptitude was not one of “moderate potential”, but instead represents a shift in psychic norms that no test at the time was constructed to properly evaluate. In truth, Yeşim possesses hyper-precognitive abilities, which she has developed and sharpened on her own through trial and error since being rejected by the academy. Yeşim now continuously “sees” several seconds into the future at all times.

In the decade since her academy rejection, Yeşim has experienced a lifetime of adventure. She has been a mercenary, an explorer, a grifter, an entrepreneur, and a smuggler, and she has enjoyed great success in all of these ventures. Indeed, her successes have been so great and so consistent that Yeşim has grown bored with it all.

Only in her early thirties, Yeşim is fabulously wealthy, and she has a list of influential allies nearly as long as her list of sworn enemies. She is restless, eager to answer some new challenge that for at least a while can keep her thrilled, feeling alive.

Due to her hyper-precognition, Yeşim succeeds where most people of similar experience and skill would fail. She “sees” the consequences of her actions before she takes those actions. This has three game effects:

1. Yeşim always rolls twice for any attack roll, skill check, or saving throw, and she takes the better of the two rolls. She is also better able to avoid attacks, even those she may not be aware of. Yeşim has a +4 bonus to Armor Class as a result.

2. Once per hour, she may use the omen precognition psychic power with no power point cost. This permits Yeşim to experience a brief subconscious examination of future possibilities. She must have a relatively straightforward choice before her, perhaps to open a box, swallow a pill, or go into a spaceport bar. Yeşim receives a distinct sense of whether following that course of action will result in physical injury or mental distress within the next ten minutes, according to the GM’s best judgment of likely outcomes.

3. With no power point cost, Yeşim may use the foretelling psychic power. With ten minutes of focused meditation, she can activate this power for an impression of the next important event that is likely to involve her personally within the next week. Brief images and visions of place are usually obtained, usually involving those people and locations most important to the event. If no important event is likely to happen within the next week, the power returns nothing. This ability can be used only once per week or until the foreseen event comes to pass, whichever comes first.

Yesim Tasi
Armor Class: 5 (unarmored)
Hit Dice: 6+6 (21 hit points)
Attack Bonus: +3
Damage: 1d6 laser pistol
Skill Bonus: +3
Saving Throw: 12+
Movement: 30 ft.
Morale: 10

April 11th, 2014  in RPG No Comments »

H Is for Hybrid

hybrid: (adj.) of mixed character; composed of mixed parts

I can’t help but think that if I’d known John Candy I would’ve loved him. Requiescat in pace, Mr. Candy.

Mog

“I’m a mog: half man, half dog. I’m my own best friend!”

Appearance & Biology

Mogs combine canine and human traits, but they favor the latter more heavily that the former. Most mogs have dog-like ears and canine noses. Rather than hair, most have fur growing on their heads, arms, and legs. Also, most mogs have a tail. Mogs can be found on many worlds, especially those with substantial human populations. This race needs atmospheres and biospheres miscible with human life in order to thrive. Mogs tend to be carnivorous, but they seldom object to supplementing their diets with tasty fruits, vegetables, and grains.

History

Pre-Scream gengineering projects produced the first generation of mogs for use in law enforcement and disaster response. Dogs of various breeds had been used by humans since prehistory. Policy makers thought that adding human intelligence to the canine’s trainability and loyalty would produce ideal police and emergency response support assets. When humanity took to the stars, they brought their mogs with them.

When the Scream shattered human colonies, mogs were instrumental in helping many survivors live through the chaos that followed. Other mogs found themselves forced to survive on their own. In the six centuries since the Scream, mogs have expanded and become more diverse. They are a common sight on many more populous worlds.

Psychology

Most mogs are insatiably curious, constantly prying into the affairs of those around them. They still retain a strong sense of pack life, and the concept of privacy tends to mean little to them. Mogs love to explore new places and meet new sapients. Consequently, mogs love to travel, and many roam the stars, working on spike-drive ships. The mogs’ pack instinct becomes most pronounced when they form attachments to humans. A loyal mog can be counted on through thick and thin, and many believe that mog is man’s best friend.

Mogs as Player Characters

A mog player character must have at least a 14 in either Wisdom or in Constitution. They are unrestricted in terms of character class, although psychic mogs are rare. Perception is always a class skill for a mog.

April 9th, 2014  in RPG No Comments »

C Is for Causal

causal: (adj.) of, relating to, or acting as a cause

The causality virus, designed by the Highbeam Multistellar’s most skilled engineers on Bellatrix, carries on the in the same weapon-of-mass-destruction tradition as the Bellatrixian plague fungus. Despite its name, the causality virus is not an organism of any sort. Instead, it is a nanotech weapon system built to infiltrate energy systems and disrupt the causality of energy transfer within those systems.

Like almost all nanotechnologies, the causality virus is self-replicating. The initial payloads are delivered to the target areas via conventional means, such as a missile. The virus then spreads, seeking out energy systems. It “infects” these systems, disrupting energy transfer by using that energy to fuel the nanotech’s self-replication. Once the “infection” within a system reaches the point at which no further energy transfer occurs within that system, the virus seeks out a new target.

The virus devastates target areas. Obviously, it shuts down all technology more sophisticated than simple machines such as waterwheels. Organisms also have energy systems, and the causality virus attacks biological processes as well. The effects on a human, for example, produce blindness and deafness almost immediately, rapidly followed by paralysis and then the complete cessation of all biological functions. Death is swift and almost painless.

After the causality virus has done its deadly work, coded broadcasts from orbital assets signal the nanotech to self-destruct by shutting down its own energy systems. This permits invading forces to move into the previously infected areas to clean up the dead and reactivate technologies affected by the virus.

April 3rd, 2014  in RPG No Comments »