Arcane Background: Artificing

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robert4818
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Arcane Background: Artificing

#1 Postby robert4818 » Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:42 pm

The following is inspired by eberron, but could potentially fit in any magical setting. Feedback is appreciated.

Arcane Background: Artificing
Arcane Skill: Artificing (Smarts)
Starting Power Points: 20*
Starting Powers: 5

Artificers are arcanists who temporarily imbue magical properties onto normal items. An artificer may choose to imbue any power he knows into an object. When he does so, he allocates a certain number of his PP into the object for use with that power. The power will remained imbued into the object for 24 hours. The object chosen to hold the power must make some sort of logical connection to the power itself (i.e. a shield or amulet for the Armor spell). The GM has final say on this.

To imbue an object with a power an artificer must have a quiet place to concentrate, and must maintain contact with the item for a number of minutes equal to the number of PP invested into the power. The player then rolls an artificing check. If the check succeeds then the power is imbued for 24 hours. If he succeeds with a raise, then the power (if it has a raise effect) can be activated with its listed raise effect. A failure means the time was wasted and the artificer can try again.

A player who has an imbued object can activate the object at will. Spells such as bolt/blast may require a shooting/throwing/fighting roll as necessary. However an item like an "invisibility imbued cloak" does not need to be rolled for, it is just activated at will.

Imbued objects use up their PP when used (as per spell description) these PP regain over time as normal, using any regeneration feats the artificer has.

Backlash: When an artificer rolls a 1 on the artificing die, he loses the PP he was going to invest into the object for a full 24 hours. In the case of a critical glitch, the object suffers 2d6 points of damage that MAY explode. If the object is incapable of taking damage then that damage reflects back onto the artificer. Armor does not help against this damage.

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#2 Postby islan » Thu Apr 22, 2010 5:27 pm

Sounds cool, but I think your Starting Powers seems too high. Think about it: at chargen you can make one item and sink 20 PP into it, this is like the AB(Superpowers) except that it can be passed around for anyone to use (ie, AB(Weird Science)). Or, you can make two objects, each with 10 PP, making it on par with AB(Miracles) but still with the AB(Weird Science) bonus of sharing. For this reason I feel like you should just have a Starting Powers of 1.

I also feel a bit unwary to be able to "save" a Raised spell effect for a later use; you then pretty much know it's going to be a Raise before you actually use the spell, thus making it a lot more powerful. From what I've read, it also sounds like the power can be used over and over again so long as the object has more PP.

Instead I might recommend having a spell require a Fighting/Shooting/Throwing roll for all attack-based spells (Bolt, Blast), and use Smarts to activate non-attack-based spells (Boost/Lower Trait, Zombie). This puts the effect right back next to when you actually use it.

With these changes, I still feel like this is just a little bit more powerful than AB(Weird Science), but more in-tune with the idea for the setting, so it's probably fine.

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#3 Postby robert4818 » Thu Apr 22, 2010 5:41 pm

The difference between artificing and weird science is this:

With weird science, you get X number of powers, each with the same number of power points that the character has.

So if a Weird Scientist has 4 powers and 10 power points he has (effectively) 40 power points worth of powers.

On the other hand an artificer with 4 powers and 10 power points, he has only 10 power points. Also, if he creates that one item, and puts all of his PP into it, then he's stuck in that configuration for 24 hours.

On the other hand if he uses all 4 powers (and say he has 20 pp) then he 4 powers that he has 5pp invested in (average).

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#4 Postby GamerDude » Thu Apr 22, 2010 6:07 pm

Sounds interestingly like the Eberron Artificer in some ways.

Now, I remember reading in the DLR main book about one character type being able to do just what you said... imbue an object with a power. Was it the Shaman? I'd check that to see how it was handled as guidance for your Artificer's abilities.
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#5 Postby VonDan » Thu Apr 22, 2010 7:51 pm

I had in mind to just use Artificer as the name for Weird Science set in a medeveil or frantacy game

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#6 Postby CAM » Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:37 am

Weird Science does the trick, its just trappings really. Your write-up is quite good however.
The Fantasy Toolkits had an Artificer Edge that you may wish to check out

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#7 Postby robert4818 » Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:54 am

CAM wrote:Weird Science does the trick, its just trappings really. Your write-up is quite good however.
The Fantasy Toolkits had an Artificer Edge that you may wish to check out


Weird science didn't really work for what I wanted. This AB is similar to, but still different from WS.

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#8 Postby islan » Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:59 am

robert4818 wrote:Weird science didn't really work for what I wanted. This AB is similar to, but still different from WS.


Yeah, it definitely stands out on its own. One thing I think I do like about it over Weird Science is that you don't have the silly metagame rule of "if you lose it, you can declared it destroyed so you can build another one." Not that there's anything wrong with that :wink:

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#9 Postby robert4818 » Fri Sep 10, 2010 1:59 am

Necro powers ACTIVATE

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#10 Postby astralplaydoh » Fri Sep 10, 2010 7:00 am

I like the concept of it and most of the mechanics.

Except, it's a little too powerful when compared to every other Arcane Background.

Example:

I spend 20 minutes in the morning and load up all my spells into items. Bolts into rods, Armor into armor, Boost/Lower Trait into a rabbit's foot, whatever.

Because you don't lose the points unless you roll a 1, you can sit there for as long as it takes and ensure those powers go in. The artificer is going to AVERAGE 16.8 power points with no downside what so ever, except a little prep time. And he can choose from 5 powers.

A wizard only has 10 power points and 2 powers. But during combat they have an increased risk of rolling a 1 and becoming shaken.


I would probably reduce the number of powers that an artificer has access to, make it 2. Same as a wizard. I would also add in magical backlash. The item could overload or something when you go to use it on a roll of 1. Even with these changes you are still more powerful than the basic wizard background.

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#11 Postby astralplaydoh » Fri Sep 10, 2010 7:09 am

After thinking about it some more, instead of rolling a 1 during the actual use of the item causing a shaken state. It would be pretty cool to make up a trapping for each power upon rolling a 1.

If your artificer enchanted his boots to increase his agility (Boost/Lower Trait) and he rolls a 1, then the magic inside of the boots reverses and absorbs some of his agility for the duration of the power, reducing his Trait by one die type.

If you enchant a rod to fire off a bolt and roll a 1, it instead blows up causing the damage to the artificer instead.

Etc etc.

This could actually be used on just about any magical background as well.


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