Thursday, December 24, 2015

Designer's Notes: Vehicle Imbuements

GURPS Power-Ups 1: Imbuments is one of those books that is so simple and yet so ridiculously complex. It lends itself quite well to just about any campaign frame as it can be easily explained as belonging to whatever supernatural or cinematic abilities are available in the setting. What's more Imbuements are extremely easy to expand (look at what Kelly Pederson, Antoni Ten Monros, or W. A. Frick did). With those things in mind I remember getting the seed idea for the article after watching the horrible Ghostrider movie with Nicolas Cage. How could I do that in GURPS? I thought. Maybe some form of Burning Innate Attack with Affects Others? That seemed so ludicrously complicated that I almost instantly gave up on it. Then after a conversation with my other half over some pho she asked "Why don't you just use imbuements?" ...It was so simple I could have smacked myself. After a night of feverish and driven work I had my first draft of "Vehicle Imbuements." Given my extremely critical (and sometimes negative view) of my own work I was very surprised at how well it turned out. It only took me about 14 hours to write, another 50 to revise (making the skills work with all Size Modifier vehicles was annoying), and about 40 to edit.

I had relatively few outtakes (though there are a few - see below) and the final document was far more than I expected. I'm probably going to be dipping my feet in the Imbuements pool again fairly soon after toying around with an idea to use them for creating things.

Outtakes: Ride-related Perks
I'm not going to leave you without some crunch! What sort of designer's notes would these be without that?! Both perks require specialization by advantage, piece of equipment, rule, skill, task, technique, etc.

Iron Hooves†
This perk can only be taken by creatures who have the Claws (Hooves) advantage. It comes in levels. The first level gives you the same benefits as if you were wearing a pair of horseshoes or the equivalent for your species (i.e., +2 to HT-based rolls to resist FP loss and preventing crippling while on hard surfaces). See Low-Tech (p. 134) for more details. Level two and three are effectively DR 1 or 2 (Partial, Hooves, -40%; Tough Skin, -40%) [1/level].

Natural Mount†
This perk is only useful to riding animals (or other beasts of burden). It comes in three levels. The first lets a rider treat you as if you were wearing a saddle; the second lets a rider treat you as if you were wearing a saddle and stirrups or as if you wearing a war saddle, the third let’s your rider treat you as if you were wearing a war saddle and stirrups. If you are wearing a war saddle and stirrups, your rider gets a +1 bonus to all Riding and Animal Handling rolls with you.

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