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Messages - Diskhotep

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2
General Discussion / Re: Contract: Still Crazy After All These Years
« on: July 19, 2019, 12:58:11 AM »
If I were running this as part of a campaign I would definitely make the negotiation a bit more difficult.

I’d also make sure Crypt Kicker was a known brand long before the Takers get this job - something most communities have around but no one is sure where it comes from. Possibly from traders with Detoxxin connections. Good note about Sixpack handing them a jug of it.

Scary Nation is not quite a LALA, not quite a Crusader, but somewhere in between. If you want to add more people I’d have a few other Latent Detoxxin cultists in and around the mine with her - possibly a mini-enclave depending on how entrenched you want them to be. Instead of a couple of stills it could be a huge production center, ready to save the Loss single-handed with their homeopathic products.

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General Discussion / Contract: Still Crazy After All These Years
« on: July 18, 2019, 02:48:10 AM »
I've been trying to post this job for a couple of days now - for some reason the forum thinks it's spam or a duplicate and won't let me put it up. Feel free to check it out and let me know what you think!

https://drive.google.com/file/d/18OODPKI2-xUCFrc-Aqkyyuxqcs7pGgGE/view?usp=sharing

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General Discussion / Re: Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 13, 2019, 07:21:39 PM »
I've made some revisions based on various suggestions and updated the original post. Please feel free to comment.

5
General Discussion / Re: Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 12, 2019, 01:11:25 AM »
So if the Takers use the gift spot - which they can't refuse accepting and costs them Bounty during negotiations - then they will get two negative rep spots and the Client's animosity for a potential job line? Doesn't that seem a bit much? My group would rather take a gift spot that involves a bullet to the chest rather than one that damages their ability to earn decent contracts on *at least* three occasions.

How did you come up with that?

Sorry, that was poor phrasing on my part. What I meant by "take advantage of" was if they grab a bunch of supplies and gear on credit and then ditch the job and take off with their loot, they will get the negative rep spots and very likely a contract out on them. I should make that more clear.

6
General Discussion / Re: Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 09, 2019, 06:22:14 PM »
In this case the three legs are the contract for purposes of Hazard Pay. The overpass is considered the job site, and is designed to take several days to complete.

For a campaign I would definitely stretch the time out longer and add a bigger complication. In my original draft there was a competition between another enclave as to which highway would be chosen, and the destroyed overpass was part of the other enclave's attempt to sabotage their rivals. The toll booth from leg one was actually manned by a group of takers from the rival enclave.

Since I'm offering this one as a possible job for a convention slot, I stripped the extra complexity out of it. I've only got 4 hours to run the whole thing. I always plan on 30 minutes for players to arrive at the table and a very quick overview of rules and setting, 30 minutes for prep and negotiations (I don't do vignettes for a one-shot), and 3 hours for the job. In this case the second leg is a quick resolve which gives a little more time for the running back and forth for the third leg. I'll admit the non-casualty combat portion is a bit front-loaded though as it is more of a logistics-heavy job. What if I combined the job site with the toll booth encounter and replaced the first leg with another quick resolution encounter?

I'm considering bumping the starting negotiations up to At Value. The general idea is the payout should be huge if they play smart, but they will have to use a hefty chunk of it up front to finish the job, but they can control how much based on how quickly and quietly they want to play it. Since they won't have a lot of opportunities for side cash other than scavenging vehicles and mobs, I want them to sweat over the idea that they are losing money with every "buy the win" encounter resolution, while still coming out in the end with at least an average payoff.

I'm assuming an average table of 5 for a convention game, and negotiations getting to at least Hazard Pay if not 100% Mark-Up as I don't intend to push very hard (Large Marge really wants the job done and knows the odds are she will be recouping a lot of the payout). Unless nobody tries to raise the price and they botch every round of negotiations and come out at Labor, I'm expecting them to get around 60 bounty for the job, spend half of it on the overpass, plus scavenge options on at least 5 mobs and 3 vehicles (should net at least 20 more bounty), plus a free bicycle and 2 doses of Suppressin, not counting whatever they pull off the toll booth and possibly a working bulldozer and scavenge from the quarry's motor pool if they check it out. Nobody is going to retire on this job, but they ought to at least get 15-20 bounty apiece once it is all totaled.

7
General Discussion / Re: Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 09, 2019, 12:48:49 AM »
I never even considered demolitions as an option since I wasn't going to give the skill to any of the pre-generated characters for the convention, but I definitely do need to know how to handle it in case somebody wants to tap a reference to go that route. I'd probably rule that each charge of plastic explosives/tnt destroys 2 rations worth of rubble per point of damage on the black die, and attracts one mob of casualties per charge used.

I don't want it to be solvable with just a couple of charges, since it is really just reducing the larger chunks to smaller bits of rubble that still need to be moved. But if they are willing to spend the bounty they should get some benefit from it. Do you think 2/damage enough or should I go a little higher? I might go as high as 5.

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General Discussion / Re: Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 06, 2019, 03:35:28 PM »
What do you think about the payout? The idea is that the takers are subcontracting the job for a huge fee, but are expected to dump a large portion back into the job itself. Large Marge is willing to extend credit since the job is for the community, as it is very likely she is going to get a big chunk of it back since they are most likely buying supplies from the company store. They don't have a lot of opportunities for side cash on this job, so I wanted the total payout to be big enough to cover everything and still leave the takers with some bounty left over.

I originally had her offer a 30-bounty gift spot instead of the credit line for fuel, labor, and ammo/ration refreshes, but since this is primarily designed for a convention slot I didn't want the table devolving into a pre-job shopping spree that leaves the group without the resources to finish the job. I want it to look like there is no way the can pull this off without hustling while actually handing them the ability to buy the win from the start.

The bulldozer can get the whole thing done in 4 days for 20 bounty, at the cost of attracting twice as many mobs of casualties each day.

Ten laborers can do the job more quietly in the same amount of time, but it will cost twice as much. 

My plan is for this job to be a "freebie" no-bid job the takers know about before they do their prep work, so they have a fallback in case prep goes incredibly poorly.


9
General Discussion / Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 05, 2019, 01:42:54 AM »
SPOILER: If you are planning on playing Red Markets at KantCon 2019 in a couple of weeks, you might want to skip this one (or at least tell me about it before the crew chooses a job).

Quote
REVISED VERSION!!!  Any comments/suggestions are appreciated.

ROAD CREW

Goods/Service
In two weeks a trucking convoy from back east will be heading past the Takers’ enclave. There are two possible routes they could take – one that passes near enough to establish a trade route, and one that takes a different stretch of road miles away. Large Marge needs a group of Takers to survey and clear the nearby highway before she calls to convince the convoy to take the route closer to this enclave.

Equilibrium
B10/R3 – 13 bounty. Scarce. Local opinion is the enclave is doing pretty well without outside assistance, so not many Taker groups are looking to jump on this contract. Talk up the benefits of trade, or remind the community that if they don’t establish a trade route their rivals will.

Economy
The job starts at Pitstop, a former truck plaza near a midwestern state highway. Pitstop did well gathering resources just after the Crash when many well-stocked long-haul truckers settled there rather than continue onward, but has become isolated and insular over the years.

Client
Large Marge was once a long-haul trucker before the Crash, but is now one of the most influential traders in the enclave. She is an ironically petite woman with a well-crafted prosthetic left leg. She firmly believes the enclave needs to shake itself out of its isolationism and make a bigger mark on the region.

Weak Spot: The End Justifies The Means. Large Marge will drag the community out of its isolation kicking and screaming if she has to, even if it means setting up a regular trade route without asking first. Takers need to show her they are willing to do what it takes to accomplish a task and damn the consequences.
Soft Spot: On The Road To A Brighter Tomorrow. Large Marge firmly believes the future of mankind is on the rise, and is anxious to be a part of it. She prefers Takers who talk up retaking the Loss or building a stronger and better network of communities.
Tough Spot: Race Against Time. There are only two weeks to go before the convoy arrives.
Gift: Large Marge will allow the Takers to purchase fuel and equipment from her on credit. Taking the money and running will earn the Takers two negative rep spots and earn her wrath.

Competition
There is a rival enclave near the alternate route that wants the convoy to take their route, and they are willing to play dirty to make sure their road is the only choice.

The Highway
The road to be cleared is a section of two-lane state highway not incredibly clogged with vehicles, as this stretch of road is far enough away from any city to have not suffered a major traffic jam. There are still some cars which will have to be moved, requiring 2 successful Resistance or Mechanics rolls each day in addition to dealing with any encounters that leg. Failure on one of these rolls still results in the cars being moved, but will attract a mob of casualties. One Scavenging roll may be made per day to pull something of value out of the abandoned vehicles, in addition to any bounty found on casualties.

Day One: Easy Money

A courier van lies on its side just off side of the road. It appears to have been sideswiped by another vehicle and rolled down the embankment. Two casualties are pinned waist down beneath the back of the vehicle, but the rear doors are still closed. The van is actually a trap by a local Meek cult, and a charge of plastic explosive has been rigged to go off if the doors are opened. The Takers may find the
explosive on a successful Awareness check, and may disarm it from inside the van with Mechanics or Profession: Demolitions if they go in through the broken front windshield and crawl through the vehicle into the back (Self-Control: Trauma to do so). Setting off the explosive causes 1d10 Killing damage to each location, and may require an infection check from pieces of the pinned casualties flying everywhere. The van is otherwise empty, as the Meeks took everything of value when they set their trap.

Day Two: Heat Advisory

It is a baking hot day. The temperature just keeps rising and there’s no wind. A First Aid, Foresight, or Research check warns the Takers that they need to find shelter and get out of the sun before they suffer from heat exhaustion. If they are in a vehicle, it will overheat and require a Mechanics check to get started again if they do not wait out the worst heat in shelter. If the Takers continue through the heat,
everyone makes a Health check. On a critical success, the Taker consumes an extra ration to deal with the heat. On a success, one extra ration plus 1d10/2 Stun to the head. On a failure, the Taker is suffering from heat exhaustion: extra ration, 1d10 Stun to the head, and 1d10/2 Stun to the torso. On a critical failure, the Taker is suffering from heat stroke: two extra rations, 1d10/2 Killing to the head, and 1d10 Stun to the torso. At the end of the day, the Takers stumble across the body of a messenger Taker, killed by heat stroke, and can take the messenger’s bicycle and his messenger bag containing two doses of Suppressin K-7864.

Day Three: Toll Booth
The Cereal Killers, a Taker group hired by the rival enclave, has created a road block out of abandoned cars in front of an overpass and demands a fee to pass (two bounty per person, 4 per vehicle). There are three with shotguns hiding behind the cars, plus one with a handgun who will hail the Takers and request their toll while the others cover him. Behind them two other Takers armed with rifles seem to
be hiding behind the nearest central pillar of the overpass (an Awareness check will show that they are not actually covering the speaker but are instead working on something at the base of the pillar). The Cereal Killers are not actually intending on collecting a toll (though they will happily accept any bounty they are given) – the speaker is stalling for time while the two riflemen finish planting the last charge of
explosives. If the Takers pay them off, they will happily move suspiciously far to the side and let them pass, and then detonate the overpass as they are going under it (1d10 Kill to each location – if a successful Awareness check is made or if they noticed the charges being planted an Athletics roll can be made to dive out of the way to instead 1d10 Stun to each location or 1d10 Kill to one location, player’s choice). If the Takers begin a combat, the riflemen will leave off setting the explosives and ready their guns (missing the first round of combat), then join in. As soon as one rival falls the others will attempt to run, setting off the charges once they are clear. If both riflemen are killed the second one will set off the charges regardless, either with a defiant shout or (if killed instantly) by falling on the detonator switch.

Roadblock
Five years of infrastructure neglect (plus strategically placed explosives) has caused part of the overpass to collapse across the highway. It will require about 200 man-hours (200 rations) to clear if the riflemen were able to plant their last charge without being noticed. If they were stopped midway only the far overpass section was destroyed, requiring 120 man-hours (120 rations) to clear. The Takers have ten days left to clear the rubble before the convoy’s scout drones arrive and they make their choice of which highway to take. If the rubble is not cleared by that time, they will go the other way and the Takers will only get half pay for the job less whatever they purchased on credit. The Takers can try and find construction equipment to move the rubble, hire laborers to move it, or use a combination of the two

A successful Foresight, Networking, or Research roll can locate a small quarry near town one leg away that still has some construction equipment. The vehicles are stored in a garage at the base of the quarry where they have been protected from the elements, but a mob of casualties is locked in with them. It will require two Mechanics rolls to scavenge enough parts to get a bulldozer working, and then repair it.
Once repaired, the Takers will have to source diesel fuel from Large Marge’s biodiesel refinery to operate it (fuel demand: 4, one charge to get to the overpass, one charge to clear 50 rations worth of rubble in one day). It takes two days to travel from the job site to the enclave and back, and each charge of diesel requires 1 Haul to carry.

The Takers can hire laborers from Large Marge at a cost of 1 bounty per person, plus 1 per day of heavy labor. Each laborer will move 10 rations worth of rubble per day, and can be at the job site in two days.

If the Takers decide to use explosives to help clear the rubble (either by using scavenged plastic explosives from Day One or by buying some from Large Marge), they can clear 2 rations worth of rubble per point of damage inflicted on the black die for each charge.

While the job is being done, any Takers not working themselves must defend the site against casualties. One mob of casualties will appear per day of work, with an additional mob appearing any day heavy machinery is being operated, or when explosives are used.

Succeeding at clearing the overpass opens up the area for future trade as the convoy will now stop at the enclave for refueling, and earns the Takers their full pay (less anything they spent in credit), as well as a positive rep spot and a job line with Large Marge.

This is a contract I've got planned for KantCon 2019. Thoughts and opinions are welcome. If you run it yourself, let me know how it goes!

ROAD CREW

Goods/Service

In two weeks a trucking convoy from back east will be heading past the Takers’ enclave. There are two possible routes they could take – one that passes near enough to establish a trade route, and one that takes a different stretch of road miles away. Large Marge needs a group of Takers to survey and clear the nearby highway before she calls to convince the convoy to take the route closer to this enclave.

Equilibrium
B10/R3 – 13 bounty. Scarce. Local opinion is the enclave is doing pretty well without outside assistance, so not many Taker groups are looking to jump on this contract. Talk up the benefits of trade, or remind the community that if they don’t establish a trade route their rivals will.

Economy
The job starts at Pitstop, a former truck plaza near a midwestern state highway. Pitstop did well gathering resources just after the Crash when many well-stocked long-haul truckers settled there rather than continue onward, but has become isolated and insular over the years.

Client
Large Marge was once a long-haul trucker before the Crash, but is now one of the most influential traders in the enclave. She is an ironically petite woman with a well-crafted prosthetic left leg. She firmly believes the enclave needs to shake itself out of its isolationism and make a bigger mark on the region.
•   Weak Spot: The End Justifies The Means. Large Marge will drag the community out of its isolation kicking and screaming if she has to, even if it means setting up a regular trade route without asking first. Takers need to show her they are willing to do what it takes to accomplish a task and damn the consequences.
•   Soft Spot: On The Road To A Brighter Tomorrow. Large Marge firmly believes the future of mankind is on the rise, and is anxious to be a part of it. She prefers Takers who talk up retaking the Loss or building a stronger and better network of communities.
•   Tough Spot: Race Against Time. There are only two weeks to go before the convoy arrives.
•   Gift: Large Marge will allow the Takers to purchase fuel and equipment from her on credit to complete the job. Taking advantage of this will earn the Takers two negative rep spots and earn her wrath.

Competition
No Takers have been interested in taking this job so far, so this is a no bid contract. The first group to negotiate for it gets the job, with no undercut at the end of negotiations.

The Highway
The road to be cleared is a section of two-lane state highway not incredibly clogged with vehicles, as this stretch of road is far enough away from any city to have not suffered a major traffic jam. There are still some cars which will have to be moved, requiring 2 successful Resistance or Mechanics rolls each day in addition to dealing with any encounters that leg. Failure on one of these rolls still results in the cars being moved, but will attract a mob of casualties.

1.   Day One: Toll Booth
A small band of raiders has camped out in an old toll station and demands a fee to pass (two bounty per person, 4 per vehicle).  There is one raider inside each of the three toll booths, plus one hiding in the weigh station. One will hail the Takers and request their toll, while the others cover him. The speaker is armed with a Handgun and the other two in the toll booths have Shotguns. The raider in the weigh station has a Rifle with the Silenced and Scope upgrades. Takers may either fight the raiders, or pay them 20 bounty to leave the area (a successful Persuasion roll lowers the bribe to 15 bounty, 10 on a critical success).

2.   Day Two: Heat Advisory
It is a baking hot day. The temperature just keeps rising and there’s no wind. A First Aid, Foresight, or Research check warns the Takers that they need to find shelter and get out of the sun before they suffer from heat exhaustion. If they are in a vehicle, it will overheat and require a Mechanics check to get started again if they do not wait out the worst heat in shelter. If the Takers continue through the heat, everyone makes a Health check. On a critical success, the Taker consumes an extra ration to deal with the heat. On a success, one extra ration plus 1d10/2 Stun to the head. On a failure, the Taker is suffering from heat exhaustion: extra ration, 1d10 Stun to the head, and 1d10/2 Stun to the torso. On a critical failure, the Taker is suffering from heat stroke: two extra rations, 1d10/2 Killing to the head, and 1d10 Stun to the torso. At the end of the day, the Takers stumble across the body of a messenger Taker, killed by heat stroke, and can take the messenger’s bicycle and his messenger bag containing two doses of Suppressin K-7864.

3.   Day Three: Roadblock
Five years of infrastructure neglect has caused part of the overpass to collapse across the highway. It will require about 200 man-hours (200 rations) to clear. A successful Foresight, Networking, or Research roll can locate a small quarry near town one leg away that still has some construction equipment. The vehicles are stored in a garage at the base of the quarry where they have been protected from the elements, but a mob of casualties is locked in with them. It will require two Mechanics rolls to scavenge enough parts to get a bulldozer working, and then repair it. Once repaired, the Takers will have to source diesel fuel from Large Marge’s biodiesel refinery to operate it (fuel demand: 4, one charge to get to the overpass, one charge to clear 50 rations worth of rubble in one day). It takes two days each way to travel from the job site to the enclave and back, and each charge of diesel requires 1 Haul to carry.

The Takers can also hire laborers from Large Marge at a cost of 1 bounty per person per day. Each laborer will move 10 rations worth of rubble per day, and can be at the job site in two days.

While the job is being done, any Takers not working themselves must defend the site against casualties. One mob of casualties will appear per day of work, with an additional mob appearing any day heavy machinery is being operated.

Succeeding at clearing the overpass opens up the area for future trade, and earns the Takers their pay (less anything they spent in credit), as well as a positive rep spot and a job line with Large Marge.



10
General Discussion / Re: Quick-Start Takers
« on: June 01, 2019, 04:01:14 AM »
ROLLER GIRL: Your skates may be long lost, but remembering your glory days on the derby circuit helps you keep it together.
Potentials: STR +1, SPD +1.
Skills: Athletics 1, Melee 1, Resistance 1, Unarmed 1, Unarmed: Knockdowns 1.
Gear: Backpack, Rations, Chainmail, Helmet. 5 bounty.

JOURNALIST: When you came to the Loss to write that big story on Takers, you never thought you'd have to become one to get home again.
Potentials: INT +1, CHA +1.
Skills: Foresight 1, Networking 1, Profession: journalist 1, Research 1, Sensitivity 1.
Gear: Backpack, Rations, Ubiq Specs. 8 bounty.



11
General Discussion / Re: Quick-Start Takers
« on: May 31, 2019, 03:49:51 AM »
GANG MEMBER: Growing up on the streets was hard, but the skills you learned there have helped you survive.
Potentials: SPD +1, ADP +1.
Skills: Athletics 1, Criminality 1, Drive 1, Shoot 1, Stealth 1.
Gear: Backpack, Rations, Handgun, Knife. 7 bounty.

PRIEST: While many have lost their faith after the Crash, you do your best to remind others there is always hope.
Potentials: CHA +1, WIL +1.
Skills: Leadership 1, Networking 1, Persuasion 1, Profession: priest 1, Sensitivity 1.
Gear: Backpack, Rations, 10 bounty.

SENIOR CITIZEN: You didn't make it through 60 years, three wars, and a zombie apocalypse to roll over and die now.
Potentials: ADP +1, INT +1.
Skills: Awareness 1, First Aid 1, Foresight 1, Scavenging 1, Self-Control 1.
Gear: Backpack, Rations, First Aid Kit. 8 bounty.

12
If a latent wants to lean into latency for a wil I'm fine with that... as long as it is bad enough to earn the WIL.  I thought there was a hard limit of 1 per roll.  But I don't have a reference for it.

True. I mostly wanted to make the point that Tough Spots are there for the Market to push on the players - the stick to go along with whatever carrot the spot provides.

As far as the one per roll goes, I've found nothing in the book to indicate such a restriction. Like I said, they used more than one point in the official playtests on a couple of occasions, so I consider it canon until something in the printed word contradicts that, or until Caleb weighs in. I don't think either way is wrong as long as it is done consistently.

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General Discussion / Re: Quick-Start Takers
« on: May 30, 2019, 06:10:19 PM »
FYI printable pregens from quickstart, main book, and a couple I put together are available with a printable variant of the gsheet charsheet are here: https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=14k5r-7fzddiPxxKtTZOKZFTYwm9vFT83

Consider making some variants from your quickstart set as printed sheets.  Speed of getting into the action > than tinkering for a 1 shot.

Thanks! My original plan was to do everything up as decks of cards for characters and gear so players could just grab a few cards for their skills, add 1 pot/5 skill points to tailor to their liking, and pick up their gear cards - should only take about 5-10 minutes tops. But with only a little over 6 weeks until convention time I may have to push that plan off until this fall. I've got a couple dozen pregen characters from last time I ran that need a little tweaking and reformatting thanks to a corrupted file, so I may just transcribe them and go full pregen again this time. I do still want to try out my quick taker plan some time though, and I feel having some professional skill packages is helpful for new players, so I plan on continuing to post new ideas as I come up with them.

14
I have not noticed that you first get the will AFTER you survive whatever trouble you stir up.

It makes sense.

Thanks for all the answers. As it is not specified in the book I will play it your way.

I haven't been able to find a specific reference in the rulebook mandating that is when you get the Will back - that's the way it was run most of the time during the official playtests, which I consider canon unless and until a printed rule contradicts it. As Market you determine when to hand out their Will for following spots into trouble - if you have a particularly nasty thing in mind you might give them their point early. My preference is to give it to them at the end of the trouble, once they have a moment to reflect on the consequences of their actions.

Note that following Spots into trouble only applies to Weak and Soft Spots. The Market determines when they get a Will for their Tough Spot by causing it to come into play. Latents having to deal with overt prejudice, Immunes being threatened with exposure of their secret, Hustlers getting a marker called in on them - all these are things the Market can use against a Taker during play, tossing them a point of Will when they do. Since I primarily run convention one-shots, I try and have one or two set up for each Tough Spot, and hit a player with one when I notice their Will is low, or when things slow down at the table. For a campaign game I may not use one for every player every session, but I'll likely use at least 1-2 per session, making sure everyone has to deal with their Tough Spot at least once every couple of jobs.

15
Will is a resource for the players to manage like any other. They may spend as many points as they like to get the benefit they desire.

Keep in mind that Will is not easy to recover though - it refreshes at the beginning of the next job, not game session, and can only be recovered in play by putting themselves in trouble using their spots. As the Market, it is your responsibility to make sure they earn that point of Will. A Black Math cultist doesn't earn a point of Will just because he covers the crew's escape from a mob of casualties - he earns it because he blows an entire refresh worth of ammo on the first leg of a job picking off casualties that are no threat to the crew just to increase his k/d ratio, leaving him with low ammo for the job itself. A Taker with the Weak Spot of "Claustrophobia" doesn't earn a Will for being chosen to guard the outside of the mine shaft while the others check out the secret DHQS file storage site - he earns it after the aberrant is released and his crew is screaming for backup while he wastes two rounds standing outside making trauma checks to try and summon up the courage to go in and help his friends knowing that there are monsters in the dark and he is running right into its lair.

And remember: the Taker gets their point of Will after following their spot into trouble, not before - they don't get to have it to spend on the problem they caused.

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