Saturday, November 30, 2019
What the characters do.
In Welcome to the City the players take on the roles of people who have signed up on the City Works Division (CWD). This is the section of city works that take on the more dangerous an unwanted tasks throughout the megalopolis that is known as The City. Their applications are chosen because they have special qualifications for this type of work and because they have few, if any, family ties. The later is because the city administrators don't want lawsuits from surviving family members to come about.
Because the CWD has a rather high casualty rate.
They are given a basic pay per month and are given assignments by their higher ups. There is no 'pay for completion' except for the rare bonus that may be attached to more delicate operations. You get a weekly paycheck, health insurance, your work clothing consisting of overalls and whatever gear you are deemed to need for a given assignment. Welcome to the blue collar world.
Assignments may be something as mundane as directing traffic and clearing storm drains. However you could also be sent out to quell a mob that has turned violent or hunting down an unknown creature that has started killing off civilians. You have have to direct traffic while another group is in a gun fight with that mob in the same street.
Base level CWD workers are all given the same colored blue coveralls. Local slang has even gotten around to calling the entry level folks “Basic Blues” as a result. As you progress up the ladder and get promotions your coverall colors will be changed to reflect this.
All workers are assigned to an Assigned Task Crew with a letter and number designation. The overturn in basic blue crews is pretty high. But if enough survive then they may put in a request for a Task Crew name change of their choice.
Friday, November 29, 2019
The supernatural and the occult.
I want to make this some really nasty stuff. Not the kind of the thing the players will all be using. It's mainly employed by the Corporate higher ups, ultra corrupt politicians and a few cults thriving in the underbelly of the city. Some of them may use it a little bit but the cost will be great and in the end they are being manipulated into becoming something less than human.
The corporate powers are almost completely under the control of a group of beings called the Nepenthean Council. They are very close to being what most religions would call demons or devils. Exchanging power and control to their loyal subjects in exchange for making the world a more terrible place filled with suffering. It's pain of the masses that the Nepentheans feed off of, the more the people suffer the more powerful and gluttonous they become.
The politicians and downtown cults are also gaining power from the same place as the corporate powers but not from the main Council. They are serving the lesser creatures of the Nepenthean realm who hope to eventually rise in power among their own. It is a constant battle for survival and more control with constant infighting and backstabbing.
Characters who decide to trade their own humanity to the Nepentheans for personal gain will receive a special attribute called 'Corruption'. The more they give into doing whatever they are told or urged to do the higher their Corruption will go up. Eventually losing touch with humanity and even reality itself and being handed over to become NPCs in the City.
Thursday, November 28, 2019
I'm a fan of skills and skill lists in games. So I'm going to be using them in Welcome to the City. Instead of going insanely detailed with hundreds of possible skills for every different type of weapon, martial art, etc I'm going to apply a broad definition. Like 'firearms' by itself instead of having to buy 'shotgun', 'pistol', 'long arms' and all of that separately.
The extra layer of detail that I will be adding is specialization. For example a player may give the characters firearm skill an extra notation giving them a bonus for using that particular weapon. Such as 'Firearms: Pistols'. They still can use all firearms under the base skill level but when they are using a pistol they get a bonus.
Something I'm stealing from Unknown Armies is the 'under duress'. Where your level of ability in a skill is represented as how well you do it in a stressful situation. Naturally if you're picking a lock at home for practice then your chances of succeeding are going to be much higher than if you are doing it while being shot at. Now in most games you aren't going to be rolling dice when your character is just at home or when they have all the time in the world. So it's much less time consuming to add in a bonus in those rare peaceful situations rather than tossing on negatives a lot more often.
Sunday, November 10, 2019
On this installment of Cash Strapped I'll be directing you all over to Archive dot org where you can find some interesting magazine collections. A nice little look back at what has quickly become a dying breed among the gaming hobby.
Ares Magazine. Published between 80 and 84 by SPI and then TSR.
The Space Gamer Magazine. Published by Metagaming Concepts and then Steve Jackson Games. Later adding Fantasy Gamer to the title off and on. Not every issue is up but it is a nice little selection.
Different Worlds Magazine. While it's not collected as nicely and there are only a handful of issues it is a nice step back to the older days of gaming.
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