July 2017 RPG Blog Carnival – Post-Apocalyptic House Rules

Most creations of the apocalypse are accidental.

The end of the world happened as we expected, too many people squabbling over too many things.  And with their super weapons, a new breed of terror was unleashed.  Not only did the radiation spread, it became aware, it gained its own life.  And what followed?  I dare not say…  All that is certain is the horrors of this war spawned all of them.  Protect yourself at all costs, should you run into such a mockery of life.

The post-apocalypse, a staple of darker science fiction.  There are few greater fears than not only one’s own death, but the death of the world we live in.  Or at the very least, the death of civilization.  In most cases, we wouldn’t have roaming raiders, so much as starved out and depressed barbarians.  But, since science fiction gives some leeway, we’re able to explore the grittier side with the likes of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road to the more gonzo like Mad Max and all of the bootlegs and homages that it inspired!  (And ’70s/’80s Italian post-apocalyptic bootlegs are simply incredible.)  Or go even further with the likes of Adventure Time, especially in the more recent years as the old world was further expanded upon.  Even if settlements are rebuilding the old world and some semblance of stability comes to the wastes, there are still many hazards that roam the blasted out reaches.  Just like the dungeon crawls and treks of D&D fantasy, the world has regressed into an age of buried secrets, monstrous threats, lost knowledge and high adventure!

With that, today I’m going to focus on retooling some old ideas I’ve had for post-apocalyptic settings.  Effects of radiation, as well as enfeebled equipment and ruins of buildings are given some spit and polish.  Plus, I wanted to bring back a fair share of gruesome and ghoulish creatures I had worked on in the past.  Whether it’s an elemental power of radiation itself or the many mutants that is probably created, there are tons of familiar faces.  While I wanted to make a scrapping based craft mechanic, I couldn’t really settle on a base craft mechanic.  To be fair, neither has core D&D really.  And until we have an expanded idea, there are tons of concepts floating throughout the web.  So, I’ll likely come back to that in the future.

Author’s Note: Here’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a while!  In fact, it’s part 1 for that matter.  Expect a heaping helping of horrifying mutants within the next couple of days to next week!  Stay glowing, my radioactive muties!

Continue reading

Advertisements

FREAKS! – Aberrant Beasts, Mutants and other Abominations

When magic is involved to experiment with life, the results can be horrifying and sickening.  So-called Freaks are born from careless tinkering with supernatural forces.  These “freaks” are often driven to madness and hostility by either their inability to grasp the world around them or reacting to a harsh and judgemental society.  Those who lack sentience tend to go mad from their tormented existence. Most of the time, their creators have little care for their warped creations.  Those who do seem them as the perfect meat shield, whilst they continue their depraved and disturbed experiments.

While many are the result of mad scientist, evil alchemists and deranged wizards; some are victims of corrupting powers and incomprehensible forces.  These powers greatly vary.  Forces like abyssal underworld hexes, maddening voids of realms beyond, places of raw and untamed energies.  Creatures born from such mysterious planes and domains are often thralls to their mad overlords.  Those who break free often became chaotic and destructive forces prone to rampage, much like material plane  “freaks”.  These planar-blighted beings were often enslaved as living machines of destruction.  They serve as pawns in warfare, conquest or acts of terror.

Author’s Note:  Many of these are original with the help of some of my friends (Thanks Bobby, Centaurpede will give me nightmares!)  Also, the creepy horse mask inspired some of the flavor text…  In the case of some of the others, they are homages.  The Cosmicoid is both a nod towards Alien and the equally inspired Wanamingo from Fallout 2.  The Hulking Mutant is a more clear reference towards the Super Mutants from Fallout.  Meanwhile the Atomic Beast was my translation of Keith Thompson’s Pripyat Beast and Psi-Zombie is Zombified Stalker from S.T.A.L.K.E.R. meets the Witch from Left 4 Dead.  Also, Atomic Beast and Centaurpede are conceptually very similar…  Granted, one’s alive while another is a From Software staple.

Continue reading