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vincentVV

ToC homerules

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Tony Williams

Tony, can you give some examples of "describing why the pillar means nothing to a character anymore"?

 

The thing to remember in cases ( b ) and ( c ) is that the character has recently lost Sanity, so they have gone a bit mad and that is now affecting how they relate to their Pillars.

 

As a Keeper I'd actually give the responsibility to the player to explain why they no longer relate to their Pillar but here's some examples I can think of:

 

The photo - in the water in the background...there's...there's...a Deep One! How did I not notice that before ?! Oh God, I can't look at it anymore.

 

A saved voice message from a loved one on your phone - Hang on, is that some sort of chanting in the background ?! What the hell is that sound ? It makes me feel nauseous now. DELETE MESSAGE.

 

A letter from a loved one - wait a minute, if I take every 3rd letter from every 4th word and write it backwards and then move it forward 13 letters of the alphabet it says "I HATE YOU". Why did she hide that message in there ? Why ? RIPS IT UP.

 

The Pillar itself has not changed - the mind of the player character has changed ( through Sanity loss ) and starts to see corruption ( which isn't actually there ) in things they used to trust.

 

If the Sanity loss was by using a Pillar to back up a failed Cthulhu Mythos revelation roll - case ( b ) - then the best result would be to somehow link the Mythos revelation they just learned to why they now distrust the lost Pillar. e.g. If the revelation had just given them the knowledge that there are things called "Deep Ones", that are aquatic, then that ties in perfectly with them rejecting the photo of a river. Not every case will be that obvious but if you and your player put your heads together I would think you might be able to come up with something. Remember that the player character has just gone more mad so it doesn't even have to make great sense - it's madness.

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vincentVV

Hm... I mean - players can just ignore it if it is too complicated and vague to explain and undertand even to the Keeper. After all, this explanaion doesn't mean anything to players. Why waste time on inventing a useless explanation? Throw it away and on to the game!

 

What saves a day, i think, is the fact that it can be a rare event - loosing a pillar - so the players won't get too tired of it. Am I right?

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Tony Williams

Hm... I mean - players can just ignore it if it is too complicated and vague to explain and undertand even to the Keeper. After all, this explanaion doesn't mean anything to players. Why waste time on inventing a useless explanation? Throw it away and on to the game!

 

Sure, that is certainly one way to play. I think my players might like the opportunity to work in some madness into their roleplaying. But each to their own. At the end of the day the Pillar is gone so don't stress too much over it.

What saves a day, i think, is the fact that it can be a rare event - loosing a pillar - so the players won't get too tired of it. Am I right?

 

I don't think it would be much rarer under these rules than the "normal" rules.

 

Generally in one-shot or short adventures it doesn't happen unless someone has a bad Mythos revelation ( case b ).

 

In a campaign then Sanity rating is eroded over many sessions ( through failed Mythos-tainted Stability tests, spellcasting or gaining Cthulhu Mythos rating points ) and it would happen more often ( case c ).

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vincentVV

Thanks a lot! I think I dig it now.

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rylehNC

The Fall of Delta Green rules use Bonds (taken from the new edition of DG itself), which are like armor for Stability. You could adapt these to Symbols, Stances, and Solaces as easily as Sources. Although for inanimate objects I would make them cost less and not replaceable.

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Tony Williams

I've made a crib sheet for the revised Pillars of Sanity rules which can be downloaded from:

https://1drv.ms/b/s!Ai8pO1rZaQtEi3CLwTq-C9LhZgkX
 

The Fall of Delta Green rules use Bonds (taken from the new edition of DG itself), which are like armor for Stability. You could adapt these to Symbols, Stances, and Solaces as easily as Sources. Although for inanimate objects I would make them cost less and not replaceable.


I wouldn't consider any of the "new" Pillar types as replaceable except possibly a Stance. The Stance could be replaced with a new one through the standard ongoing Psychoanalysis rules (like replacing a traditional lost Pillar of Sanity).

I'm keen to get my hands on The Fall of Delta Green ( and Fearful Symmetries - I'm a Blake fan ).

 

UPDATE:

 

I've put a rule tweak into the crib sheet:

 

"Pillars of Sanity can now be used to regain lost Stability pool points. Each of the investigator’s Pillars can be used once per game session to do this, but more than one Pillar of the same type can not be used in the same session."
 
The crib sheet is now document version 1.2 and can be got from the above download link.

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vincentVV

I was not able to download 'cause I'm not registered on OneDrive. Do I have to register or any alternative links are possible? ((

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Tony Williams

Pelgrane Press are going to host it on their website soon. I'll update the link when they get the file put up.

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vincentVV

Great! =)

 

Besides, I thought about one more homerule.
When a character is totally out of Stability (-12) he is not out og action!
He is still blasted, but now instead of Stability he looses Sanity in the same amounts!

 

Example: A character is at -12 Stability and has 8 Sanity. He is told to lose 4 Stability. As his Stability is already at -12 - he loses 4 Sanity instead!

 

This reflects the final stage of character's mind crumbling to pieces.

 

And one more, stolen from WoD.

 

According to ToC rules, a characters gets a mental disorder after "a significant Stability loss" yet how much is this "significant" - is not specified.

 

I don't like the idea of connecting disoders with stability loss, so I offer nther approach.

 

Any time a character loses SANITY - he rolls 2D6. If he gets a number LOWER than his new Sanity score - everything is OK (well, he still loses Sanity, but OTHERWISE - everything is OK).

 

But if he rolls HIGHER than his new Sanity score - he gets a mental disorder.

 

Simple.

 

The lower your Sanity - the higher the chances to acquire something really nasty =).

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vincentVV

I have another homrule which adds lethality to games.

 

In basic rules each character has X hp. This means, each of them can take X wounds before he gets a possibility to lose consiousness. That's ok. But after characters reach 0 hp - they are in the same conditions as to when to roll! (after crossing "0" and "-6"). And each of them dies at -12!

 

My idea is to use "half of character's negative Health Rating" istead of "-5" and "Negative Health rating" instead of "-12"!

 

Example: a character has Health Rating of 8. He is wounded when he is between 0 and -4, and he is heavily wounded when he is between -5 and -8. At -8 the chracter dies.

 

This shows the conformity between PCs Health rating and his ability to survive.

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Travern

Robin D. Laws has posted a variant rule for damage in GUMSHOE to mitigate combat situations in which a high threshold of success with hitting winds up with a low damage roll.  
 

After rolling for damage, a player may choose to substitute the margin from the successful attack for the damage die result. The margin is the difference between the test result (spend plus roll) and its Hit Threshold.[...]

Possible drawbacks of implementing this variant rule:

  • This introduces another decision point for the player on each successful hit, probably slowing combat slightly. It won’t happen every time though–just when great hit results are followed up by lousy damage rolls.
  • It gives the players power to mow through opposition quicker by upping their attack spends. If you find that this weakens creature stats too severely, increase enemy Health ratings by 20% across the board.

 

I can see this applying in particular to pulp ToC adventures, as well as more action-oriented GUMSHOE games such as Nights Black Agents.

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Tony Williams

Robin D. Laws has posted a variant rule for damage in GUMSHOE to mitigate combat situations in which a high threshold of success with hitting winds up with a low damage roll.

 

 

I can see this applying in particular to pulp ToC adventures, as well as more action-oriented GUMSHOE games such as Nights Black Agents.

This is something VincentVV has been wanting to add to his games.

 

I think it needs tweaking though:

The choice of "you can do it if you roll lousy damage" makes for yet another decision branch/rule complexity ( which Robin admits ).

It might be simpler to just allow the margin difference in the test roll/Hit Threshold to be used as a further Damage Modifier to the damage roll ALL THE TIME.

 

That way, if the player is using a lousy weapon with a terrible damage modifier (-2 hat pin ) they can choose to make up for it at the decision point of how many Weapons points to put into their test roll.

 

This way also allows for the type of weapon used to still have an effect on the damage.

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GBSteve

That's what I was thinking too. I don't mind players using either rule, but both together seems over complicated. Or you could use the rule, in whatever GUMTHEWS is now called, that the minimum damage is the number of points you spend (plus the modifier).

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