D20 style Bloodlines in SW

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Blogotron
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D20 style Bloodlines in SW

#1 Postby Blogotron » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:24 am

Alright, for those of you who have not read my posts over the past two weeks... We are playing a converted D20 campaign called Midnight published by Fantasy Flight Games (which recently canceled the Midnight line, even from PDF downloads).

It is a grim setting where magic is rare, though not weak. Rarity has more to do with Spell Casters and Magical Items. Both of which are tracked down and consumed by the Dark God. Add to this that Magical items are rare for PCs to possess or make while the bad guys have an unlimited supply and you might run into a problem.

Midnight rectifies this problem by awarding all PCs (Heroic Wild Cards in this case) Heroic Paths/Bloodlines. In typical D20 fashion there are 20 powers, some just advances on the powers given at earlier levels, that follow a theme.

I would think that I would treat the "per use" abilities as Super Powers but I was wondering how to handle Attribute and Skill boosts.
I am going to limit one power per Rank though with an Edge you can buy more powers/more power points.

So any ideas how to model this? Is it kosher to give a straight +1 modifier to an Attribute or Skill? followed by plus two then a Die type bump?

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#2 Postby Emiricol » Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:49 am

Have you reviewed the Savage Midnight thread at Against The Shadow? I don't know if it will answer your question, but it might.

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#3 Postby jscifert » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:38 pm

Hey! I did a lengthy conversion of Midnight to SW over at the Against the Shadow website. Certainly, it is likely fraught with errors, but I enjoyed putting it together. Still have been tweaking it on my own every now and then, so some things have changed slightly, but I tried to make the rules fit the SW setting and capture the feel of the Midnight World within the SW game setting.

Feel free to beg, borrow, and steal all you like from it!

Link is here and files can be downloaded at the bottom of the page:

http://www.againsttheshadow.net/index.php?topic=340.45

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#4 Postby quigs » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:48 pm

I would probably just add some flavor the a character, stating what bloodline he is from. Then create or use some existing edges and powers that the character with that specific bloodline can purchase at each rank.

Kinda like the racial edges in the Wizards and Warriors SW pdf download, but tied to bloodlines instead of races.

I tend to shy away from adding new rules or mechanics to my savage worlds games, as most of what I am trying to portray to my players can be explained with fluff easier than it can with new rules.

When I convert any campaign to SW, usually my only additions are races, a few pieces of new gear, some new edges (less than 10 usually), and some flavor additions to arcane backgrounds and maybe some skill uses.

I don't like to add new rules to the game as it can throw the game off balance, and may make a lot of existing stuff obsolete.

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#5 Postby Strickland5 » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:58 pm

jscifert wrote:Hey! I did a lengthy conversion of Midnight to SW over at the Against the Shadow website. Certainly, it is likely fraught with errors, but I enjoyed putting it together. Still have been tweaking it on my own every now and then, so some things have changed slightly, but I tried to make the rules fit the SW setting and capture the feel of the Midnight World within the SW game setting.

Feel free to beg, borrow, and steal all you like from it!

Link is here and files can be downloaded at the bottom of the page:

http://www.againsttheshadow.net/index.php?topic=340.45
And someone over there stole my stolen skulls icon.. grrrr
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#6 Postby Blogotron » Fri Jan 23, 2009 12:49 am

jscifert, I did not see anywhere that you might have converted any of the Heroic Paths. And I am using your convesion, in fact it was your post on ATS that made me consider Savage Worlds as a possible rules set since D20 was an Anti-inspiration to me. Thank you.

As for balance. Spellcasting and magical item use are severly curtailed for heroes in this setting and so these "heroic paths" were added to even up the score.

For example:
Ironborn: The Ironborn can withstand the blows of the mightiest creatures, fight on, even while punctured by many black-fletched arrows, and resist the harshest conditions and most potent venoms.
1: HD increased by one step (i.e from 1d4 to 1d6)
2: +1 to all Fortitude saves
3: +1 Natural armor
4: Quick healing equal to 1/2 character level per hour
5: Damage Reduction 1/-
6: Resistance to Cold, fire, electricity and acid; 3
7: +2 Fort Save
8: +2 Natural Armor
9: Indefatigable; immune to fatigue, but not exhaustion
10: Damage reduction 2/-

...so on and so forth to 20th level

For Savage Worlds I was thinking it might go something like this...

Novice:+1 to to all Vigor rolls
Seasoned: +1 to Toughness (counts as Armor)
Veteran:Never suffers penalties from the "Fatigued" condition (p. 102 SW:ex)
Heroic: +2 to Incapacitation Rolls
Legendary: May spend as many bennies as they like to Soak the wounds suffered from one attack.

That particular Heroic Path was simple, others might require Super Powers-like rules.

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#7 Postby jscifert » Fri Jan 23, 2009 8:41 am

Hey! OK, I posted my latest file with all information on the Against the Shadow site, including all of the Heroic Paths I have had time to make, to date! Hope you find it useful!

Link is here:

http://www.againsttheshadow.net/index.p ... 40.new#new

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#8 Postby SlasherEpoch » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:21 am

Blogotron wrote:For example:
Ironborn: The Ironborn can withstand the blows of the mightiest creatures, fight on, even while punctured by many black-fletched arrows, and resist the harshest conditions and most potent venoms.


That's all you need to convert.

Ironborn
Requires: Nerves of Steel, Hard to Kill
+1 Toughness, +2 to resist Fatigue from exposure and the effects of poison or disease.

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#9 Postby Clint » Fri Jan 23, 2009 11:54 am

Hmm, I don't know I could see more detail than effectively an Edge; especially as this replaces the use of "standard" magic items in the game.

I would consider some foundational issues from the source system...

1. Magic items are more integral to character capability than in SW.
2. Level increase is based on a curve instead of a flatter scale.

Then I'd consider the transitional system.

1. What the effects of "standard magic" would be.
2. How to make abilities that supplement the Edge system instead of supplanting it.
3. The effects should increase in effectiveness on a similar flatter scale.

I think the Rank increase has potential (in this specific instance), so looking at the example above by the criteria I listed...

Blogotron wrote:Novice:+1 to to all Vigor rolls
Seasoned: +1 to Toughness (counts as Armor)
Veteran:Never suffers penalties from the "Fatigued" condition (p. 102 SW:ex)
Heroic: +2 to Incapacitation Rolls
Legendary: May spend as many bennies as they like to Soak the wounds suffered from one attack.


Now, the first thing to kind of stand out is that the abilities are pretty varied in effectiveness and Rank. The Novice ability is like a Legendary Edge (a flat +1 to any use of a Trait) while the Seasoned ability is less than an Edge or Attribute increase (a more limited version of Brawny or just increasing Vigor). And if I'm understanding it correctly, the Legendary ability may be the most limited of them all. I do like the fact though that it steps more outside the usual effects of Edges.

Now, looking at the basic description ("The Ironborn can withstand the blows of the mightiest creatures, fight on, even while punctured by many black-fletched arrows, and resist the harshest conditions and most potent venoms.") and considering the SW equivalents compared to what I feel is kind of the typical level of permanent fantasy magic in SW, I might go with...

Novice: +2 to Vigor rolls to resist Fatigue loss & makes a natural healing roll every 2 days
Seasoned: Ignore 1 level of wound penalties (stacks with Nerves of Steel)
Veteran: +2 Armor (stacks with worn armor)
Heroic: Gets an immediate natural healing roll after combat ends
Legendary: Gets a free Soak roll if takes damage that would Incapacitate him.

Anyway, I'm not familiar with the source setting, so take that with a grain of salt, but hope it helps.
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#10 Postby Blogotron » Fri Jan 23, 2009 8:59 pm

Clint. Thankyou. I was beginning to lose heart. I am not a Rules lawyer nor a gearhead when it comes to gaming so anything that I throw out is an idea that certainly needs refinement. The conversion abilities were mere whims and not really well thought out. i just figured people needed an example.

I understand that in SW you don't need that +2 sword to be able to harm that Greater Demon as compared to D20. In the Source that I am using, Midnight, you typically only fight against humanoids ( Orcs primarily, though evil humans are nearly as prolific an enemy) who while similar to the PCs, are not limited, by campaign law nor system mechanics, in their access to magical armaments and spells. PC spell Users, in SW terms are Arcane users but whose direct Damage spells cost 2 extra PP to cast ( Bolt, Blast, etc). So while any weapon might hit the Orc He is far more powerful/resilient in that he wields magical axes or his Priest buddy casts damaging spells twice as often as his PC counterpart.

Thankyou very much for your input as it is exactly what I needed and was trying to ask for my my befuddled way.

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#11 Postby Emiricol » Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:05 pm

Nicely done, Clint!

Blogotron, I think you could post any Bloodline that came up on these boards and get a good Savage Conversion :) When I ran Midnight using Riddle of Steel, I only bothered to convert the Bloodlines that were in use, saved a ton of time.

Jcfert, while I like your conversion overall (a lot!), I don't really care for the Bloodlines you did. This is not because they are bad, but just because I like the gradual increase in power from the original source, rather than getting all the benefit right up front. Just my preference.
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#12 Postby jscifert » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:45 pm

Thanks for the feedback! Yeah, It was my first attempt at them, but now that I see the effects of the "scaled" versions, I may have to go back and re-do them!! I think I like the scaled versions better as well :)

If only I can find them time!

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#13 Postby Blogotron » Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:34 am

I think that I have hit upon a Solution. Sticking with the ideas of Fast, furious, fun and the way arcane powers are described I am going to go with Free-form abilities paid for by bennies. This method will, of course, require that I give more bennies per game.

You would begin with a basic ability, far stronger than any one edge, that functions the same way each time you spend a benny on activation. The power name would be tied to either an attribute or a skill whose use+ benny would activate powers that are thematically linked. These further powers would not be limited by a list but rather be freeform. This of course would be limited by GM fiat though I might let anything happen, so long as it follows the theme, for the cost of two Bennies.

My above example, Iron Born would, at it's most basic be Spend a benny to Soak wounds at a +4 bonus. Attaching the Iron Born bloodline to Vigor then allows Variation on the theme to be performed by spending a benny and rolling Vigor, Such as shouldering an extremely heavy burden for incredibly long periods of time, shaking off cyanide poisoning and so on.

I think that it seems simple enough and self limiting without causing undue power creep.


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