A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Where in all of your character write ups will go.
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Rigidat
Image

While surveyed in the late 1970s* by the TSV Outlawry (one of the TSV Adventure's sister ships) nothing about Rigidat -- an arid, radioactive dustbowl of a planet on the fringes of the Technate's disputed border with the Konan Armada's territories -- invited further study. For forty years*, the planet was entirely left to its own devices, with no Technate authority aware that the Outlawry's scans had woken something up. That wouldn't be discovered until what was officially chartered as a private exploration company travelled there in 2017*.

The explorers discovered that Rigidat was home to life, though not to organic life. Three distinct groups of giant sapient robots, similar in many ways to the Ectotronians of the planet Mercury, had been awakened from sleep mode and spent the last few decades in constant war with each other. By the time that the explorers arrived, one of the three groups had been thoroughly defeated and incorporated into the other two, which were presently engaged in a final conflict with each other.

In their first encounter with the robots, the explorer's starship was damaged to the point where it was no longer spaceworthy, leaving them stranded on Rigidat. Undaunted, their leaders proceeded to negotiate an alliance with one of the robotic factions, to obtain the parts they needed in exchange for assistance in their conflict. It was discovered that the organics could engage in a process dubbed 'neural bonding' with the robots, increasing their operational efficiency. And that was the start of the real problems.

Until that point, most of the explorers were unaware that their company was a front for the crime syndicate known as Vaskhane. The mask was now off, and the leader of the expedition was openly discussing the possibility of maintaining the alliance with the robots once the war was over, with the ambition of using their strength to become a dominating force within Vaskhane. He seemed somewhat oblivious to the possibility that the robots had ambitions of enslaving the organics and possibly overthrowing the Technate.

Some of the explorers found both of these prospects sufficiently horrifying that they engaged in a mutiny and fled to the camp of the other robotic faction, revealing the secret of neural bonding to them. A new alliance was negotiated, and the war tipped back into stalemate. Unfortunately, neither group of humans could operate the ship without the cooperation of the other, and so they found themselves stranded until the stalemate could be broken.

The situation has, within the last few months*, become even more complicated by the arrival on Rigidat of a 'new' third faction. The woman who calls herself Treu is obviously a refugee from the Konan Armada, stranded here just like the Technate explorers. She managed to repair the badly damaged 'hulk' of a robot of the original third faction, identified as one of its leaders. Since then, the two of them have frequently interfered in the conflicts between the other two groups, sometimes aiding one side and sometimes the other. As she's a highly trained combatant, and her robot ally is a powerful model despite his extensive damage, they generally swing the conflict as they desire. Just what Treu's goal in all of this remains unclear.

It would be more clear if the Technate parties were aware that Treu is not just a Konan trooper, but a prodigy among her people. Further, she is -- or technically was -- the naturally-born daughter of a member of the Primacy, who chose to reveal the secret of the Konan to her daughter to prepare 'Treu' for the day she also joined the Primacy. This was a misstep, for the revelation that the Konan were not, in fact, conducting a war in the name of the star gods shattered the young ace's belief in the rightness of her people's cause. She escaped from the Armada and traveled to the Technate, but only got as far as Rigidat before her damaged ship broke down. Discovering the hulk of Bahbrom, she repaired it enough to start his reconstruction mechanism, and won his alliance.

Treu believes that a Konan battle group is likely to arrive in pursuit of her within the year*, and knows that she cannot overcome them alone, or even with Bahbrom's aid. She needs to make allies with one of the other factions on Rigidat, but isn't sure which one would be a better potential ally. So she engages in probing strikes against both, trying not to do too much damage, to study their response. So far, she hasn't found the answer she's seeking, and is starting to become desperate. And Rigidat's system is only going to grow more complicated in a few months* time when a certain superhuman law enforcer and her students finally follow the trail of clues leading to it ...

Bahbrom -- PL 10
Image

Abilities:
STR 10 | STA -- | AGL 3 | DEX 3 | FGT 9 | INT 2 | AWE 1 | PRE 0

Powers:
Blaster Cannons: Ranged Damage 12, Accurate, Extended Range 2 - 27 points
Huge Robot: Permanent Growth 8 (Strength +8, Intimidation +4, Protection +8, Speed +1, Dodge -4, Parry -4, Stealth -8), Innate; Immunity 30 (Fortitude); Protection 4, Impervious 10 - 69 points
Jump Jets: Leaping 12 (4 miles) - 12 points
Passenger Compartment: Feature (can carry two passengers, three if they don't mind getting comfy) - 1 point
Reconstruction: Immortality 5 (minimum of 1 day), Check Required (Technology, DC 20) - 1 point
Sensors & Communications: Radio Communication 1; Senses 6 (accurate radio, darkvision, direction sense) - 10 points

Advantages:
Assessment, Defensive Attack, Eidetic Memory, Evasion, Improved Initiative, Power Attack, Sidekick 24.

Skills:
Expertise: Military 6 (+8), Insight 7 (+8), Intimidation 6 (+10), Perception 8 (+9), Ranged Combat: Blaster 3 (+6), Technology 5 (+7), Stealth 5 (+0).

Offense:
Initiative +7
Unarmed +9 (Close Damage 10)
Blaster Cannons +8 (Ranged Damage 12)

Defense:
Dodge 6, Parry 8, Fortitude Immune, Toughness 12, Will 9

Totals:
Abilities 30 + Powers 120 + Advantages 30 + Skills 20 + Defenses 18 = 218 points

Complications:
Protector--Motivation. Poor Communication ("speaks" about twenty words of Technate Standard, none of any other language.)

Treu -- PL 8
Image

Abilities:
STR 5 | STA 6 | AGL 3 | DEX 4 | FGT 6 | INT 2 | AWE 3 | PRE 2

Powers:
Konan Biology: Immunity 2 (disease, poison) - 2 points
Konan Swiftness: Leaping 3 (60 feet); Movement 1 (environmental adaptation [zero-g]); Speed 3 (16 MPH) - 8 points
Neural Bonding: Features 2 (Use Vehicles skill to make Team Checks with Bahbrom's Close and Ranged Attack Checks) - 2 points

Advantages:
Defensive Attack, Equipment 5, Improved Initiative, Language 1 (Technate Standard, [Konan is native]), Ranged Attack 2, Skill Mastery (Vehicles).

Equipment:
Blaster Pistol (Ranged Damage 5), Body Armor (Immunity 8 [life support], Protection 3), Commlink.

Skills:
Acrobatics 5 (+8), Athletics 3 (+8), Close Combat: Unarmed 1 (+7), Expertise: Military 6 (+8), Insight 4 (+7), Intimidation 5 (+7), Perception 5 (+8), Ranged Combat: Blaster 6 (+10), Technology 7 (+9), Vehicles 8 (+11).

Offense:
Initiative +7
Unarmed +7 (Close Damage 5)
Blaster Pistol +12 (Ranged Damage 5)

Defense:
Dodge 7, Parry 7, Fortitude 6, Toughness 9/6, Will 8.

Totals:
Abilities 62 + Powers 12 + Advantages 11 + Skills 25 + Defenses 10 = 120 points

Complications:
Freedom--Motivation. Secret (former Konan ace.) Temper.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Tadeuth
Image

Planets, within the Technate, fall into two basic categories. Either they have been declared open for settlement, or, for whatever reason, they have not. Even a planet that has been declared open will have territories that are restricted from settlement, whether because they contain threats to public safety or because they have been set aside as nature reserves. It is strictly contrary to the Technate's laws for any individual (or entity with the status of an individual) to own a majority of the open lands on a planet, and the Bureau of Law Enforcement monitors potential claims very carefully to ensure that no individual (or entity with the status of an individual) acquires ownership of that majority through proxies.

However, those restrictions exist because, in the 1970s*, an entity with the status of an individual did acquire the overwhelming majority of open lands on one particular planet, and successfully defended their right to do in court. The laws were changed to prevent this happening in the future, but could not be applied retroactively to break up the near-monopoly of ownership of the planet Tadeuth by the megacorporation of the same name. The Technate's authorities have had to settle for watching Tadeuth Incorporated like a wingbeast for any potential infractions that could let them break it up. So far, they haven't found any.

Tadeuth is, essentially, a planetary-scale amusement park. The smallest of its seven continents contains what one might expect from such a setting: a variety of rides, theatres, games and other playgrounds, with zoological displays the only noteworthy exception. There are extensive botanical gardens, some of the finest in the Technate, but from its foundation, Tadeuth Incorporated has been outspoken in its corporate belief that all animals deserve to exist in their natural habitat, and that even open range zoos are a contravention of that inalienable right.

However, the other six continents (and to a lesser extent the seas between them) are where the company makes most of its income. Tadeuth specializes in a form of entertainment that exists nowhere else in the Technate, and nowhere (officially) in the Imperium, either -- the live action wargame. These games include recreations of battles from the history of Chirab and other famous sea, air and land battles from the history of other worlds, but one of the continents is intended for purely fantastic battles that never happened and never could happen.

The battles are largely fought by armies of robots, with human guests taking the roles of generals who remain firmly at the rear of their forces, observing the action remotely. That said, there are some scenarios that involve guests taking the field as 'hero' units, often equipped with special powers enabled by technological devices provided (for a rental fee) or by subroutines in the robots' programming. There is a greater element of risk in such scenarios, and guests are warned that they are taking their lives in their hands by entering them. Nevertheless, people keep coming.

It should be emphasized that the robots of Tadeuth are no more slaves than any other robots in the Technate are. They are salaried employees who are paid very well for their work, and if there's almost nowhere to spend that money except in company-owned stores, that's just how things have worked out. Any robot who finds themself unsatisfied with their job can resign from their position and will even be given a complimentary ticket offworld. Very few robots express that dissatisfaction, and the company officially denies any reports that it assassinates robots who do so that, when they are reconstructed, they have no memories of that dissatisfaction. Such claims are baseless defamation.

Unbeknownst to the executives of Tadeuth Incorporated -- none of whom are robots -- that 'baseless defamation' has not been kept from the robot workers, despite their best efforts. And while the claims have never been proven, a small, secretive movement has grown among the robots in response, referred to as the Living Will society, particularly popular among those robots who work in the wargames. When a robot joins this movement, a copy of their consciousness is made and then stored in the memory of one of the planet's megaframe computers. Each such copy occupies terabytes of space, but this is basically a minute fraction of these devices' memory.

When a robot suffers injuries sufficient to require reconstruction, the robot's personal memories (as distinct from their procedural memories) are normally lost. When a robot who is part of the Living Will society is reconstructed, however, they will be contacted by other members of the society who will offer to have copies of those memories downloaded into them. Not all robots accept this offer, but none of those who don't have betrayed the secret of the society. Just how that secrecy has been kept is something that most members don't like to think about.

The reason for all this secrecy is quite simple. It is utterly illegal in the Technate to make a copy of a robot's memories in this fashion, or store them outside of a robot's 'brain', as there is nothing preventing someone from downloading those memories into two or more robots, essentially creating multiple copies of the same individual. Laws against that were part of the compromise accepted by robot leaders during the emancipation in order to assuage fears that the robots would be genuinely undying citizens of the Technate. They chose to voluntarily accept personality death, with every reconstruction essentially creating a new individual. The Living Will society has changed that completely for its membership.

If the board of Tadeuth Inc. ever learned of the existence of the society, their reaction would probably be somewhat horrific, as they would be afraid that the Technate would never believe that this illegality was going on without their knowledge. This would mostly because it actually is impossible that it is going on without the knowledge of someone at a lower level of management who is covering it up, for whatever reason. This situation could quite easily be the leverage that the Technate's Bureau of Law Enforcement needs to finally break up Tadeuth's monopoly ...

... and all they would have to do in the process is destroy a tiny candle of hope.

Robot Soldiers -- PL 6/MR 8
Image

Abilities:
STR 5 | STA -- | AGL 0 | DEX 3 | FGT 4 | INT 1 | AWE 1 | PRE 1

Powers:
Reconstruction: Immortality 5 (minimum of 1 day), Check Required (Technology, DC 20), Quirk (loss of all memories)- 1 point
Robotic Body: Immunity 50 (Fortitude effects, mental effects); Impervious Protection 6 - 62 points
Sensory Package: Senses 2 (extended radio) - 2 points

Advantages:
Eidetic Memory, Equipment 4, Improved Initiative, Ranged Attack 4.

Equipment:
20 points of equipment as needed for assignment (usually a weapon, with armor being only a costume.)

Skills:
Perception 5 (+6), Technology 4 (+5), Vehicles 3 (+6).

Offense:
Initiative +4
Unarmed +4 (Close Damage 5)

Defense:
Dodge 4, Parry 6, Fortitude Immune, Toughness 6, Will 4

Totals:
Abilities 20 + Powers 66 + Advantages 10 + Skills 6 + Defenses 9 = 111 points

Complications:
Obedience--Motivation. Secret (memory backup.) Others As Needed.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Uplink
Image
Art by Michal Lisowski

The woman who uses the name Uplink has been relatively close-mouthed about her past -- which is perhaps understandable, as she claims that her past was the future of the World More Grim, and may still be. She uses the name Victoria Lemaçon when she needs to use a civilian name. While that might be an alias, it's been noted that she used it quite frequently, which suggests that it's more important to her than a disposable name would be. It's also been noted that her speech contains something of the rhythm of Haitian Creole, suggesting that her origins might lie in a future version of that nation.

Uplink first came to prominence in 2015 when she assisted the Superhuman Crew in defeating the genocidal robot Metalika. At the time, she claimed to be a time traveler from the future that came from Metalika's victory, who had only recently arrived in the present. The fact that the latter statement was soon discovered to be untrue -- there was photographic evidence of her presence as early as 2008, though none before that -- raised doubts about the former as well. She has never addressed these doubts, tending to answer questions about her origins with the phrase, "Believe me or don't."

Whatever questions might exist concerning her origins, there is none about her motivations. She has assisted the Crew, individually and as a group, on several other occasions since then, as well as obtaining employment -- on a strictly freelance basis -- with Real American Heroes, Inc. Uplink's activities tend to focus on preventing both the development of other artificial super-intelligences and other criminal activity involving hyper-technology. However, her opponents have included aliens, mutants and wizards, just like any other SPI on either side.

In truth, Uplink is a bit bewildered that she still exists. According to the theory of time travel as it was explained to her in her native era, the 2060s, she would be able to change history by helping to defeat Metalika before it slaughtered seventy per cent of humanity, but the cost of that change would be that she blipped out of reality. Yet here she still is. Does this mean that Metalika is not permanently defeated? Were the scientists who explained all this wrong, or were they lying to her. She has no way of getting any answers, as there are no experts on time travel in her world. However, while discussing his visitor from a parallel reality, Renegade has mentioned that time travel has been known on theirs for a lot longer.

An even more unusual journey might be in Uplink's future ...

Uplink -- PL 11

Abilities:
STR
10/3 | STA 5 | AGL 5 | DEX 5 | FGT 6 | INT 3 | AWE 4 | PRE 1

Powers:
Cybernetics: Radio Communication 3; Enhanced Advantages 6 (Close Attack 2, Evasion, Improved Initiative 2, Improvised Tools), Quirk (Close Attack is only enhanced against targets with a lower initiative total); Protection 6, Impervious 10; Senses 7 (Accurate Hearing, Analytical and Extended Vision, Danger Sense, Infravision, Radio) - 40 points
Cybernetic Weapons: Array (22 points)
  • Augmentations: Enhanced Strength 7; Leaping 4 (120 feet); Speed 4 (30 MPH) - 22 points
  • Blaster: Ranged Damage 11, Accurate 3 - 1 point
Translator Circuit: Comprehend Languages 2 - 6 points

Advantages:
Accurate Attack, Agile Feint, Close Attack 2, Chronal Memory, Defensive Attack, Diehard, Evasion, Fearless 2, Improved Initiative 2, Improvised Tools, Skill Mastery (Technology), Startle, Takedown, Uncanny Dodge.

Skills:
Acrobatics 6 (+11), Close Combat: Unarmed 4 (+10), Deception 8 (+9), Expertise: Military 6 (+9), Expertise: Streetwise 6 (+9), Intimidation 10 (+11), Perception 6 (+10), Technology 8 (+11), Vehicles 6 (+11).

Offense:
Initiative +13
Unarmed +12/+10 (Close Damage 10)
Blaster +11 (Ranged Damage 11)

Defense:
Dodge 10, Parry 10, Fortitude 9, Toughness 11, Will 8

Totals:
Abilities 64 + Powers 68 + Advantages 11 + Skills 30 + Defenses 17 = 190 points

Complications:
Justice--Motivation. Electronic (becomes Hindered, Immobile and Paralyzed if subjected to Nullify Electronics.) Secretive.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Tommy Elagabalus
Image

Not quite twenty-seven years ago, two children were born to a witch named Callahan. The wife of the acknowledged leader of Boston's mystic underground, she had consumed alchemical reagents after learning of her pregnancy in hopes of inducing mystical abilities in her child. She succeeded, as both Weiss and Ross, as her son and daughter were named, possessed powers even in their infancy. She had relatively little time to take pride in her success, however, for the poisons she'd consumed killed her soon after they were born. Their father soon married again, this time to a mundane woman, and now they had the requisite step-mother.

Ironically, she was actually a very kind woman to the two of them, and it was their father who proved to be an onerous presence in their lives. He demanded that both of them demonstrate a mastery of mysticism, abusing them when they failed to live up to his expectations. While Weiss had abilities that made learning the secrets somewhat easier, Ross had a much harder time of it. Despite that, it was Weiss who decided that she'd finally had enough of all this, and urged Ross to run away from home with her when they were seventeen.

Unfortunately, they were quickly to discover that their lifestyle, for all its pain, had been positively luxurious by comparison to what they had as teenaged runaways, and they found themselves trapped in a life of crime. Their powers facilitated their activities, but also drew attention from so-called superheroes like the Superhuman Crew, whom the two of them fought on several occasions. They were never captured, but never really managed to accomplish much, either. So they decided to join forces with other supercrooks as the Cohort of Misfortune.

When they discovered that the leader of the Cohort of Misfortune, Metalika, had ambitions of widescale genocide, however, they were appalled. This was not what they'd signed up for, and they defected to the Crew in order to oppose the robot's ambitions. Tragically, Ross was killed in the battle that followed, taking a blast to the chest from one of Metalika's minions.

But he didn't stay dead, as it turned out that he had more powers than anyone had ever realized. A few hours later, he awoke in front of one of his new teammates, who helped him to conceal his resurrection. Ross had come to believe that his sister would be better able to make a new life for herself if she wasn't constantly looking after him. He seems to have been right, since she has become a leading member of the Superhuman Crew as Snow White.

For his part, Tommy Elagabalus has also moved on, becoming an occult investigator in Prague, the most haunted city in Europe, based out of a haunted mansion that he received as a reward for his first case. Ironically, this life has given him the opportunity to finally develop his mystical abilities through self-study that his father's punishing courses never did. His path has frequently led him into alliances (and conflicts) with Llogres and her master, and what has been passed onto him about that other world has him wondering if his world-walking powers could be used to go there ...

Tommy Elagabalus -- PL 8

Abilities:
STR
1 | STA 1 | AGL 5 | DEX 5 | FGT 4 | INT 1 | AWE 2 | PRE 2

Powers:
Hyper-Reflexes: Enhanced Advantages 7 (Defensive Roll 2, Evasion, Improved Initiative 2, Uncanny Dodge); Enhanced Defenses 8 (Dodge 4, Parry 4) - 17 points
Teleporter: Accurate Teleport 9 (2 miles), Turnabout - 28 points
Won't Stay Dead: Immortality 12 (minimum of 15 minutes), Limited (not if beheaded), Stamina Check Required (DC 14); Immunity 1 (aging); Regeneration 10 - 19 points

Advantages:
Beginner's Luck, Connections, Contacts, Defensive Roll 2, Equipment 3, Evasion, Improved Initiative 2, Languages 2 (Czech, German, Hungarian, Slovakian), Ritualist, Uncanny Dodge.

Equipment:
Spook Central: Size Medium, Toughness 10, Features Concealed, Dual-size (Huge), Laboratory, Library, Living Space, Personnel, Sealed, Security System, Self-repairing, Workshop - 15 points

Skills:
Deception 7 (+9), Expertise: Magic 6 (+8), Expertise: Streetwise 5 (+6), Insight 8 (+10), Investigation 6 (+7), Perception 6 (+8), Persuasion 6 (+8), Stealth 4 (+9).

Offense:
Initiative +13
Unarmed +4 (Close Damage 1)

Defense:
Dodge 10/6, Parry 8/4, Fortitude 4, Toughness 6/1, Will 8

Totals:
Abilities 42 + Powers 64 + Advantages 9 + Skills 24 + Defenses 10 = 150 points

Complications:
Atonement ... Sort Of--Motivation. Manipulative. Secret (lots.)
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Merlin
Image

Long ago, there was a man named Morgan. Legend would remember him under another name, just as the ancestor for whom he was named was better known as Pelagius. Gifted with certain superhuman abilities in addition to those which he learned through his study of magic, he decided that the best thing he could do for the world, the best way to make the world a better place, would be to bring about a superhuman aristocracy to govern it well. The rape of a woman named Igraine by a man named Uther was one of the lesser crimes that Morgan enabled in pursuit of that goal.

Such activities are bound to make enemies, and eventually one of Morgan's would arrange for him to be imprisoned in a crystal cave, able to observe the world but not affect it. By the time someone freed him from that imprisonment, his first attempt at creating an ideal kingdom was already in ruins. Undaunted, he vowed to do better next time, and decided to use the girl who had freed him as a key part of his subsequent plans. She went in the cave while he went walking up and down on the world. A few centuries later, he would be known as Maugris, when he involved himself with some of the Frankish aristocracy. Later yet, he adopted the name that his earliest legend had given him -- Merlin.

At some point, Merlin achieved what no other mystic in the history of his world had managed to do, becoming truly immortal. Needless to say, he has never revealed exactly how he did this, but it seems to have involved melding his psyche and body with the fabric of another dimension, from which he could then dispatch incarnations which would instantly return to their origin if fatally injured. (This is much how the Ascendants of the World More Sorcerous operate, and Merlin bears a marked resemblance to one of them, a patron of sorcery known as Mardlyn. What connection, if any, exists here is not known.)

Despite this ascent, Merlin was, like all the mystical powers of the World More Grim, lulled into a deep sleep by certain events which took place on the island of Bermuda around 1540, not to awaken until 1921. Disgusted by what he saw of the world that the superhuman aristocracy had made, he spent much of the subsequent century passing judgment (in the form of Llogres) on the worst of them, reshaping them into their current form. By the early years of the current century, he finally felt able to rest a bit, just in time to witness the start of the age of heroes.

Merlin has had a few interactions with these so-called SPIs, some friendly, some hostile, though he generally prefers to leave such interactions to Llogres. However, he did provide assistance to those who opposed the invasion of Dionysus in 2011, though he declined to take part in the formation of the Superhuman Crew in the aftermath. Truthfully, he feels the weight of his years, and would prefer to pass on his self-appointed responsibility as the world's mystical guardian to a younger party. Unfortunately, none of the candidates he has approached have had any interest in his patronage, and so he must soldier on. "How weary is my life," he is often heard to say.

Recently, however, a new spark has entered into that difficult life, as he has learned (through Llogres) of another world, arousing his curiosity for the first time in forever ...

Merlin -- PL 15

Abilities:
STR
10/2 | STA 3 | AGL 2 | DEX 3 | FGT 8 | INT 3 | AWE 7 | PRE 12

Powers:
Immortal: Immortality 5 (one day); Immunity 1 (aging); Movement 1 (dimensional travel to home plane), Reaction (death); Movement 2 (dimensional travel to mystical dimensions), Standard Action - 15 points
Master of the Mystic Arts: Array (55 points)
  • Healing Word: Perception Ranged Healing 8, Energizing, Resurrection, Restorative, Side Effect (inflicts Damage 8 to target on failed roll) - 1 point
  • Lightning Barrage: Ranged Multiattack Damage 18, Dynamic - 2 points
  • Spellshatter: Nullify Magic 18, Broad, Simultaneous, Precise, Dynamic - 56 points
  • Portal: Extended Only Teleport 13, Portal, Dynamic - 2 points
  • Probing: Cumulative Effortless Mind Reading 13, Subtle - 2 points
  • Scrying: Remote Sensing 10 (all senses), Dimensional, Dynamic - 2 points
  • Shielding: Immunity 80 (Toughness), Concentration; Dynamic - 2 points
Mind Over Matter: Enhanced Strength 8; Continuous Flight 6 (120 MPH); Move Object 8, Subtle; Sustained Protection 9, Subtle - 60 points
Mystic Attunement: Senses 5 (extended 4 mystic awareness) - 5 points
Staff: Environment 1 (light); Strength-based Damage 2; Removable (-0 points) - 3 points

Typical Combination:
Cumulative Effortless Mind Reading 6, Subtle; Remote Sensing 6 (all senses)

Advantages:
Accurate Attack, Assessment, Equipment 4, Fearless, Improved Defense, Language 6, Ritualist, Trance.

Equipment:
Home Plane: Size Huge; Toughness 12; Features Communications, Concealed, Defense System, Grounds, Gym, Isolated, Library, Living Space, Power System, Personnel, Security System - 18 points.

Skills:
Deception 4 (+16), Expertise: History 12 (+15), Expertise: Magic 4 (+16), Insight 6 (+13), Perception 7 (+14), Persuasion 4 (+16), Ranged Combat: Mystic Arts 9 (+12), Treatment 8 (+11).

Offense:
Initiative +2
Unarmed +8 (Close Damage 10/2)
Staff +8 (Close Damage 12/4)
Lightning Barrage +12 (Ranged Multiattack Damage 18)

Defense:
Dodge 8, Parry 8, Fortitude 6, Toughness 12/3, Will 18

Totals:
Abilities 80 + Powers 151 + Advantages 16 + Skills 27 + Defenses 20 = 294 points

Complications:
Responsibility--Motivation. Arrogant and Patronizing. Secret Identity.

Note: If Merlin ever travels to the World Less Magical, he suffers Weaken 5 on all Master of the Mystic Arts effects except Shielding, is Disabled on checks with his Expertise: Magic skill, and suffers Power Loss for his Immortal and Mind over Matter powers.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Metalika
Image

In 2011, after Renegade accidentally revealed his own extraterrestrial origins in the aftermath of Dionysus' invasion, the brilliant and sociopathic Billie Zane saw an opportunity. Employing her vast web of corporate and government contacts, she was able to discover the whereabouts of the alien vessel which had brought Renegade to Earth twenty years before and obtain it for her own uses. Zane was genuinely startled that most of its technology was not that much advanced beyond what she herself could develop, except in one area that had always daunted her. That was the creation of genuine artificial intelligence.

With the involuntary assistance of a long dead Ibycan scientist's personality emulation, Zane was able to create a method to record the psyche of a living individual and use it as the basis for a robot's AI. Naturally, she chose her own mind as the ideal candidate; just as naturally, she applied certain limitations to the resultant program so that it was not quite as intellectually superior as she was. She wanted no rivals, after all, and if it was only ten per cent as brilliant as she, that should be more than enough when combined with the impervium armor and advanced weaponry installed within the robot's frame. Dubbing it Metalika, she wound it up and set it loose on a collision course with the Superhuman Crew.

Metalika quickly recognized her own limitations. (Just as with her creator, she identifies as female.) While more powerful, in some respects, than any of the Superhuman Crew, she was neither omnipotent nor omnipresent. Therefore, she began to recruit allies from those who already had reason to oppose them, forming and leading the Cohort of Misfortune. Together, they gave the Crew some of the hardest battles they'd ever faced ... which provided the ideal distraction for Metalika's actual goals.

Eventually, however, the members of the Cohort figured out what Metalika was plotting. She had constructed a number of facilities on the African, Asian, European and North and South American landmasses, that were intended to draw down meteor strikes that should exterminate most of humanity. While at least one of her subordinates was all for this, the rest were a bit disconcerted; she was able to deal with two of them, but two others escaped her and warned the Crew ...

... and inadvertently Zane as well, who was no less shocked. While able to encompass causing vast amounts of death for some goal, she could not perceive any greater goal in Metalika's actions; they seemed to be destruction for its own sake, and likely to put Zane herself in danger. She therefore covertly assisted the Crew in defeating Metalika before her plan could come to fruition. The robot was destroyed in the battle, but her hulk disappeared in the aftermath, and is believed to be in the process of reconstruction, if she has not already returned to full function.

In that final battle, Metalika recognized the handiwork of her maker, and was outraged that Zane was unable to comprehend her plan. By destroying human life on every continent except Australia, she would be giving Zane a species that she could much more easily dominate. Clearly, in order to fulfill her own goals, she would need to surpass her creator, and yet this is not so easily done. She would need the assistance of another entity of Zane's brilliance to undo her inbuilt limitations, and such are not easily found.

At least, not on her own world ...

Metalika -- PL 12

Abilities:
STR
9 | STA -- | AGL 0 | DEX 3 | FGT 8 | INT 10 | AWE 6 | PRE 4

Powers:
Impervium Armor: Immunity 80 (Toughness), Limited to Half Effect; Impervious Protection 13 - 66 points
Reconstruction: Immortality 5 (minimum of one day), Check Required (Technology DC 20) - 1 point
Robot: Immunity 30 (Fortitude) - 30 points
Sensors: Radio Communication 3; Senses 8 (accurate extended radio, darkvision, direction sense) - 20 points
Weapon Systems: Array (27 points)
  • Arm Blade: Strength-based Damage 3, Improved Critical 2 - 1 point
  • Basic Cannon: Ranged Damage 13, Variable (technology) - 27 points
  • Psychic Magnetron: Perception Range Affliction 9 (Resisted by Will; Dazed, Compelled, Controlled) - 1 point
  • Tractor Beam: Perception Range Move Object 9 - 1 point
Advantages:
Accurate Attack, Assessment, Eidetic Memory, Inventor, Power Attack, Precise Attack (Ranged, Cover), Speed of Thought.

Skills:
Expertise: Science 5 (+15), Insight 6 (+12), Intimidation 9 (+13), Perception 8 (+14), Ranged Combat: Weapon Systems 8 (+11), Technology 6 (+16).

Offense:
Initiative +10
Unarmed +8 (Close Damage 9)
Arm Blade +8 (Close Damage 12)
Cannon +11 (Ranged Damage 13)
Psychic Magnetron -- (Perception Range Will 9)

Defense:
Dodge 9, Parry 9, Fortitude Immune, Toughness 13, Will 12.

Totals:
Abilities 70 + Powers 157 + Advantages 7 + Skills 21 + Defenses 16 = 271 points

Complications:
Destruction--Motivation. Obsession (Billie Zane.) Weakness (becomes becomes Hindered, Immobile and Paralyzed if subjected to Nullify Electronics.)
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Manneken
Image

The year was 2014, the place a hospital in Philadelphia, and the man was old, and sick, and dying. He had been many things in his time -- a decorated Marine, a celebrated artist, a lover -- though not as much as he wished -- and a good friend to have. But time runs out for the best of us, and despite how much pain he was in, the man nevertheless found himself wishing for just a little more time. He expected that this was a futile dream, however, so he started to drift off to sleep, unsure whether or not he would awaken.

Then he realized that he wasn't alone in his hospital room. He blinked in confusion, since visiting hours were long over, and he couldn't recognize the woman who was sitting in a chair gazing at him. And it occurred to him that this might be because her appearance changed at every moment, in every conceivable way. "Uh ... good evening, ma'am," he said, since his mother hadn't raised him to be rude. "Who might you be?"

"I have many names," she answered.

"Oh no."

"Not any of the ones you just thought of, though. You've led an interesting life, Mr. Montrose, particularly given my interests. Three times, in your life, you encountered my work --"

"Ohhhh no."

"Please calm down," the woman said, in tones of great restraint. "I'm actually a bit impressed, and you don't know how rare that is. You helped them. You gained nothing by doing so, and put yourself at considerable risk in the process. Yet nevertheless, you helped three pairs of incredibly star-crossed lovers come together against all odds. Why?"

He managed to shrug. "I believe in love, I guess. It's pretty much all I do believe in."

He couldn't really tell, but he thought she was smiling. "Me too," she said softly. "And so, I will grant you a bounty. Now, before you ask," she continued, suddenly businesslike, "there are some profound limitations on what I can actually do. I cannot cure what ails you, first of all. But there are two possibilities. I can take away your pain, so that when your end comes, you will go gently. Orrr I can give you what you just wished for -- more time. But you may spend much of that time cursing me. Which is it to be?"

He made his choice, the choice he suspects she knew that he was going to make, and the world went dark for a time. The next thing he knew, he found himself on a hill watching a funeral at Arlington, and recognized many of his friends among the guests, and guessed who the funeral was for. Feeling a bit dizzy, he raised his hand to his forehead -- then paused as he stared at the wrist of that hand, which had a visible joint. There were other, smaller ones in each of the fingers. He'd been turned into a mannequin.

"Well, I guess I shouldn't be all that surprised, given what you said about your work," he said, shaking his head. And then he walked down the hill, away from the funeral.

Since then, Manneken -- he sometimes goes by Ken, but never uses the name he used in his first life -- has quietly tried to make the best of his extended time. Unlike certain animate mannequins he's known, he remains animate no matter how many people are looking at him, but on the other hand, he never appears as a realistic looking human being, either. He's not a superhero, despite having greater than human strength and toughness, as he doesn't go looking to get mixed up in trouble. That said, if he discovers that someone is having some difficulties that he can help with, especially in the area of romance, he'll always try to help them as much as he can. He once thought about abandoning a particularly annoying pair to their own devices, but found himself stiffening into immobility when he tried, only regaining his ability to move when he agreed to go back and help.

Despite all this, and other frustrations of his existence -- he can know love himself, but his ability to enjoy sex is very limited -- he hasn't ever cursed the being who did this to him. Despite everything, he still believes in Love.

Manneken -- PL 8

Abilities:
STR
5 | STA -- | AGL 0 | DEX 0 | FGT 8 | INT 0 | AWE 4 | PRE 4

Powers:
Mannequin: Immunity 30 (Fortitude); Protection 8 - 38 points
Mystical Self-Repair: Immortality 5 (1 day); Regeneration 2 - 12 points

Advantages:
Attractive, Improved Grab, Improved Initiative, Jack-of-all-Trades, Power Attack

Skills:
Close Combat: Grab 3 (+11), Deception 4 (+8), Expertise: Art 6 (+6), Expertise: Magic 5 (+9), Investigation 2 (+7), Perception 5 (+9), Persuasion 4 (+8), Stealth 5 (+5).

Offense:
Initiative +4
Unarmed +8 (Close Damage 5)

Defense:
Dodge 6, Parry 8, Fortitude Immune, Toughness 8, Will 7

Totals:
Abilities 32 + Powers 50 + Advantages 5 + Skills 17 + Defenses 9 = 113 points

Complications:
Doing Good--Motivation. Obviously Inhuman (but can disguise himself somewhat.) Weakness (must help lovers in difficult circumstances, or become progressively Hindered, Immobile, and Paralyzed.)

They say we're crazy/Let's prove them right!/Keep holding my hand and we'll get through this night ...
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

And with that ... I have now been doing this for a year and a day, according to the best information available to me. I think it's time to take an extended break.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Gilliam
Posts: 579
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:28 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Gilliam »

Enjoy your break Davis, I have really enjoyed reading your builds over the last year.
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Gilliam wrote: Fri May 14, 2021 8:36 pm Enjoy your break Davis, I have really enjoyed reading your builds over the last year.
Thank you very much.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

The Scavengers

Image
David (Art by Slugg-o)
Image
Jude (Art by Brian Rubinfeld)
Image
Joshua (Art by Yngvar Apslund)

It seems unlikely that Dr. John B. Calhoun would have approved of the other experiments that were being conducted by employees of the National Institute of Mental Health at the Casey farm in 1962. His objections wouldn't have been founded on any sentimental considerations about what they were doing to the mice and rats, but rather on his belief that using 'mad science' on creatures intended for 'serious science' experiments could contaminate the results. That said, the most noteworthy experiments occurred after Dr. Calhoun had departed for California, with the creation of sapient and iconographic mice and rats, and their escape from the laboratory, taking place towards the end of the year.

The escaped rodents were broken up into several smaller groups by various circumstances, and while most of those who survived reunited somewhat later, many were thought lost for good. One of these lost rats was a pregnant female who used the name Judith, who gave bith to a litter of nine infants soon after the escape. Three of them survived to maturity. One of the first books that Judith ever read was a collection of stories about the Nine Worthies, and she named her children after three of them -- Joshua, David and Judah.

The rat pups' physical maturity outpaced their mental and emotional maturity by quite a bit, though they rarely spoke of their youth later on, and so many questions about this period remain unanswered. They travelled along with their mother, moving across the United States as tramps, until Judith died, apparently due to misadventure, in 1972. All three of the brothers' personalities were largely shaped by this loss -- David became determined to become able to protect what was left of his family, Joshua was left angry at the world and everything in it, and Judah -- or Jude, as he began calling himself -- developed a whimsical and easy-going attitude.

Despite their differences, they stayed together for several more years, right up until everything changed for them. In 1977, while passing through Denver, they were caught up in one of the last great battles of the first age of heroes and exposed to further mutating effects that caused them to increase in size many times over, until they were each roughly five feet in height. It was an extremely painful process that left them all but helpless for several hours, and so their existence was discovered by a human being.

Fortunately, Katsuki Junko could best be described as unflappable. The strange creatures she found hiding out in the basement of the flophouse where she was temporarily residing were in need of help. She took her responsibility to help all living creatures seriously, and therefore gave them what aid she could and listened with interest to the story of their lives so far. Observing their athletic and stealthy talents with interest, Junko hesitantly offered to give them instruction in how to use those natural abilities to better results, through the use of the martial arts.

They had to move a few times over the course of their training, but by 1984, when they were living in Detroit, the three brothers were highly accomplished martial artists and infiltrators, having developed combat styles that made use of weapons that they'd constructed from scavenged equipment. They referred to themselves as the Scavengers, and frequently used their training to protect humans as well as themselves and their Little Mother. In the process, they found themselves clashing with a criminal martial artist, Tobidashi, who was pursuing certain schemes in association with the Pythons and with an extraterrestrial stranded on Earth. It was the start of a great deal of strangeness, but the Scavengers found themselves enjoying being heroes, even if they were regarded as monsters by the public.

Tobidashi disappeared in 1987, most likely executed by his superiors for his repeated failures. The alien, Kulkafron, continued his experiments for a few more years, but also disappeared after a security team from the TSV Adventure, led by Otodevol, assisted the Scavengers in finally destroying his base of operations. The brothers were invited to travel to the Technate in order to give testimony concerning the activities of Vaskhane that they'd witnessed, and agreed once it was also mentioned that the Technate's medical treatment could assist their sensei with some difficulties she'd been sufffering in recent months.

Not much is known about the Scavengers' activities after they left Earth. It's believed that they may have worked alongside fellow Terran-expatriate Captain Mystic as agents of the Bureau of Law Enforcement, but if so they did so in secret. It's possible that they eventually settled in Manehil, a city on Muraddin largely occupied by the Xavin people, whom they somewhat resemble, and possible that by now a new generation of adolescent transgenic shinobi rats are active there.

The Scavengers -- PL 6

Abilities:
STR
3 | STA 4 | AGL 3 | DEX 2 | FGT 6 | INT 2 | AWE 2 | PRE 1

Powers:
Keen Senses: Senses 3 (Low-light Vision, Acute and Tracking Olfactory) - 3 points
Mobility: Movement 2 (slithering, wall-crawling 1); Speed 2 (8 MPH) - 6 points

Advantages:
All: Agile Feint, Defensive Attack, Defensive Roll, Evasion, Improved Defense, Improved Disarm, Improved Initiative, Improvised Tools, Instant Up, Move-by Action, Power Attack, Takedown, Teamwork.
David: Equipment 2, Inspire, Interpose, Leadership
Jude: Close Attack, Equipment 1, Redirect, Set-up, Skill Mastery (Deception)
Joshua: Favored Environment (neighborhood), Great Endurance, Uncanny Dodge

Equipment:
David: Sickles (Strength-based Damage 3, Improved Critical, Split Attack) and 5 points
Jude: Staff (Strength-based Damage 2, Split Attack) and 7 points
Joshua: Bow (Ranged Damage 3), Sword (Strength-based Damage 3, Improved Critical) and 3 points

Skills:
All: Acrobatics 6 (+9), Athletics 4 (+7), Deception 6 (+7), Perception 4 (+6), Sleight of Hand 6 (+8), Stealth 6 (+9), Technology 4 (+6).
David: Expertise: Philosophy 6 (+8), Treatment 6 (+8).
Jude: Expertise: Popular Culture 6 (+8), Vehicles 6 (+8).
Joshua: Intimidation 6 (+7), Ranged Attack: Bow 6 (+8).

Offense:
Initiative +7
David: Unarmed +6 (Close Damage 3), Sickles +6 (Close Damage 6, Crit 19-20)
Jude: Unarmed +7 (Close Damage 3), Staff +7 (Close Damage 5)
Joshua: Unarmed +6 (Close Damage 3) Sword +6 (Close Damage 6, Crit 19-20), Bow +8 (Ranged Damage 3)

Defense:
Dodge 5, Parry 6, Fortitude 5, Toughness 6/4, Will 5

Totals:
Abilities 46 + Powers 9 + Advantages 18 + Skills 21 + Defenses 6 = 100 points

Complications:
All: Survival--Motivation. Obviously Inhuman. Scavenged Equipment (frequently breaks down.)
David: Overconfident.
Jude: Easy-Going.
Joshua: Temper.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
Sidney369
Posts: 129
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2020 3:18 am

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Sidney369 »

So would it be fair to say that David lead, Joshua is cool but rude, and Jude is a party dude? (Sorry, couldn't resist). Cool mixing of the different concepts.
Always ask before you use someone's Original Character.
Never ever use them without permission. Only Villains do that.
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Sidney369 wrote: Wed Jun 02, 2021 2:20 am So would it be fair to say that David lead, Joshua is cool but rude, and Jude is a party dude? (Sorry, couldn't resist). Cool mixing of the different concepts.
More like David tries to lead, Jude would love to be a party dude but is well aware that he's not getting any invites, and Joshua has exactly zero chill. But yeah. And all three of them do machines.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Katsuki Junko
Image

Debuting in 1964, Japan's first superhero was the self-proclaimed 'scientific ninja' known by his alias of Jiraiya, after the famous ninja of folklore. And debuting three years later, Jiraiya found himself (somewhat reluctantly) saddled with a partner, who naturally took the alias Tsunade as she fought by his side. Looking back on those days, many years later, Katsuki Junko preferred to remember the good times, and was laughingly grateful that they never ran into anyone who insisted on being called Orochimaru. When asked whether her relationship with Jiraiya had been romantic as well as professional, she gently tapped Jude on the head with a spoon and replied that a lady never answered questions like that.

Junko's career as Japan's first superheroine began in her early twenties, after she received training from the same man who had trained Kageyama Sarutobi: the mad scientist known only as Professor Chi. The professor claimed to have stripped the various esoteric techniques employed by generations of would-be martial artists of their superstitious dross, leaving only practical methods that anyone could use. Despite this, he trained only two students in his methods, and they would both pay a steep price for their power, though they wouldn't learn that until after the professor died, in 1968.

Access to the professor's notes painted a clearer portrait of what he had done to them, and began to drive a wedge between the two heroes. Between these revelations and the cataclysm in Vietnam, Sarutobi began to increasingly reject the materialist and technological society that had produced him in favor of more traditional approaches to the martial arts and life in general. While Junko sympathized with such goals, she was unable to fully embrace them. Therefore, the two parted with a fair amount of acrimony in 1974, with Sarutobi beginning to lay the foundations for what he would call the Shadow School, and Junko departing for the United States.

Little is known of her life between her arrival in America and her meeting with the Scavengers, three years later. At some point in that time, she learned the horrific cost of the abilities she'd mastered -- they caused her to age much more rapidly than she should. By the time she began teaching David, Jude and Joshua, she resembled a woman in her early forties, ten years older than her actual age. Sarutobi suffered from the same affliction, which would ultimately kill him in 1992. For this reason, as much as her lack of access to the tools used in her training, she did not instruct the Scavengers in these techniques.

Generally, during the Scavengers' adventures, Junko remained behind and offered only counsel and advice to them. She encouraged David's quest to become a worthy leader to his brothers, laughed at Jude's pranks though never at the prankster, and tried to soften the sharp edges of Joshua's bad attitude. She was pleased when they began to make other human friends, such as Julie Martens, since she feared what would happen when her death left them alone in the world. She did not think of herself as their mother, exactly, and actually found the 'Little Mother' name she was saddled with to be somewhat irksome, particularly after she found out what inspired it. But she was always their biggest fan.

Ultimately, in the name of saving her life, the Scavengers left Earth behind in 1991, by which point she looked like a woman in her seventies. If their fate is something of a mystery, hers is even more so. It may be that what was done to her was repaired, and even reversed, though the miracles of Technate medicine. But perhaps it was too late, and her ashes rest in an urn somewhere on some alien world.

Katsuki Junko -- PL 8

Abilities:
STR
1 | STA 1 | AGL 3 | DEX 4 | FGT 6 | INT 1 | AWE 6 | PRE 1

Powers:
Abundant Step: Leaping 3 (60 feet); Movement 1 (trackless) - 5 points
Chi Mastery: Array (8 points)
  • Flurry of Blows: Selective Burst Area Damage 4, Tiring - 8 points
  • Nerve Strike: Cumulative Affliction 8 (Resisted and Overcome by Fortitude; Dazed, Stunned, Paralyzed), Tiring - 1 point
  • Restoration: Healing 8, Tiring - 1 point
Advantages:
Assessment, Chokehold, Defensive Attack, Defensive Roll, Evasion, Fast Grab, Grabbing Finesse, Improved Disarm, Improved Grab, Improved Hold, Improved Initiative, Improvised Tools, Improvised Weapon, Language (English, [Japanese is native]), Prone Fighting, Tracking, Trance, Uncanny Dodge, Weapon Bind, Well-informed.

Skills:
Acrobatics 6 (+9), Athletics 6 (+7), Close Combat: Unarmed 2 (+8), Deception 8 (+9), Expertise: Philosophy 8 (+9), Insight 5 (+11), Perception 4 (+10), Persuasion 7 (+8), Sleight of Hand 6 (+10), Stealth 6 (+9), Treatment 6 (+7).

Offense:
Initiative +7
Unarmed or Improvised Weapon +8 (Close Damage 3 or more)
Flury of Blows -- (Close Burst Area Damage 4)
Nerve Strike +8 (Close Fortitude 8)

Defenses:
Dodge 5, Parry 6, Fortitude 3, Toughness 3/1, Will 11

Totals:
Abilities 46 + Powers 15 + Advantages 20 + Skills 32 + Defenses 9 = 121 points

Complications:
Responsibility--Motivation. Family (the Scavengers.) Prejudice (homeless.) Rapid Aging.

Note: This represents Junko's abilities in the late 70s and early 80s. A decade earlier, while active as Tsunade, her AGL, DEX and FGT would both have been two ranks higher, she would have Close Attack 2 instead of Close Combat: Unarmed, Ranged Attack: Thrown 4 (+10), the abilities of her Chi Mastery would not have the Tiring limitation, and she would have carried an Equipment package identical to that used by Kiyohime. By the early nineties, she was in significantly worse condition than this; reduce all physical abilities and FGT by 2.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
User avatar
Davies
Posts: 3206
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: A World Less Magical But No Less Fantastic

Post by Davies »

Tobidashi
Image

飛び出し is the Japanese word for the sort of bladed instrument known to the English-speaking word as a switchblade. When Tomita Kyousuke chose this as his nomme de guerre, in 1979, he was sixteen years old and not particularly given to deep thought; the word itself sounded cool to him, and so he was quite willing to let it become the name by which he chose to be known. Later, he would decide that it was a particularly appropriate name for someone who wanted to be a ninja, as it referred to something dangerous, hidden from sight, that could quickly reveal itself when it was needed.

The story of how Kyousuke 'helped' his older sister to realize that her American swain didn't care about her at all has already been told. In the aftermath, he eagerly took part in the activities of the extremist group that he joined alongside Kiyohime, initially quite happy that she was showing the same passion for them that she had only ever given to him. When their group was brought into the Pythonian Insurgency, he began to experience doubts about their course of action, particularly when they left Japan and came to the corrupt West. While the opportunity to strike at America where it would truly feel it was welcome, he began to feel like he was once again an afterthought in his sister's life, just as he had been when she had been with him.

Consequently, in order to establish an identity separate from 'Kiyohime's tag-along brother', he volunteered his services for one of the Insurgency's more exotic projects -- their alliance with agents of the extraterrestrial crime syndicate known as Vaskhane, and was sent to Detroit in order to work with a squid-like humanoid known as Kuklafron. The alien unnerved him, particularly with his chilling indifference to whether or not Tobidashi's efforts in his supposed service bore fruit or not. Kuklafron was pursuing many different projects, far more than he revealed to the Pythons, and if some of them failed, well, others still might succeed.

In the course of one of these missions, Tobidashi had his first encounter with the Scavengers. He initially underestimated what he believed to be some stupid rat-creatures, and nearly suffered a lethal injury as a consequence of that first conflict. Amused by this, Kuklafron provided him with an armored costume made of an impossibly strong and light-weight polymer. Thus equipped, and no longer underestimating the rats, he fought them numerous times, never succeeding in doing them any permanent harm but often preventing them from interfering with his schemes as well as those of the aliens.

However, he was frustrated when he realized that he was still viewed as little more than his sister's sidekick within the Insurgency, and that those who knew about his activities viewed his inability to kill a bunch of teenaged mutants as proof of his incompetence. Even worse, on those occasions when he was able to spend time with his sister, Tobidashi found himself increasingly disturbed by her behavior. She was becoming erratic and unstable, like many of the other leaders of the Insurgency, and no longer focusing on seeking revenge on him, rather than viewing him as just a symptom of America's moral bankruptcy. She was still obsessed with the man, just ... differently, and this was not at all what Kyousuke had wanted.

In late 1986, he wound up captured by agents of a different faction within Vaskhane, opposed to Kuklafron, at the same time that the Scavenger's mentor was also taken hostage by them. Initially viewing the old woman with disdain, he revised his opinion when he learned who she was. While he was no longer the boy who had looked up to Jiraiya and Tsunade, actually meeting one of them was still somewhat exciting, and so he found himself speaking with her in a respectful manner, and revealing more about himself than he probably should have. Kakita-san didn't offer any judgements about his actions, but she did wonder whether or not his unhappiness with the way that his life had gone might be because he knew that he had hurt his sister, the one person he really did care about, more than was strictly necessary.

While he mocked that idea, claiming that he'd acted with the best of intentions, Tobidashi kept revisiting the conversation in his thoughts over the next few months. Had what he did really been the only way, or even the best way, to make his sister realize what a jerk that guy was? At last, he decided that the only thing to do was to tell her the truth, face the consequences of doing so, and then decide with her what they should do now. And he went to her private rooms to have an important discussion with her, not wearing his armor, meeting her face to face.

The story of what happened next has also already been told.

Tobidashi -- PL 8

Abilities:
STR
3 | STA 3 | AGL 4 | DEX 4 | FGT 5 | INT 1 | AWE 2 | PRE 1

Powers:
Alien Armor: Immunity 2 (suffocation); Protection 3; Removable (-1 point) - 4 points

Advantages:
Agile Feint, Close Attack 2, Defensive Attack, Defensive Roll, Equipment 5, Hide in Plain Sight, Improved Defense, Improved Disarm, Improved Trip, Instant Up, Language 2 (English, Russian, others [Japanese is native]), Power Attack, Skill Mastery (Stealth).

Equipment:
11 points of equipment as needed.
Arsenal: Array (12 points)
  • Katana: Strength-based Damage 3, Improved Critical - 1 point
  • Smoke Grenade: Ranged Cloud Area Concealment Attack 4 - 12 points
  • Throwing Stars: Ranged Multiattack Damage 1 - 1 point
Skills:
Acrobatics 5 (+9), Athletics 6 (+9), Close Combat: Sword 1 (+6), Deception 7 (+8), Expertise: Streetwise 4 (+5), Intimidation 7 (+8), Perception 6 (+8), Ranged Combat: Throwing Star 5 (+9), Sleight of Hand 6 (+10), Stealth 7 (+11), Technology 6 (+7).

Offense:
Initiative +4
Unarmed +7 (Close Damage 2)
Katana +8 (Close Damage 6)
Throwing Stars +9 (Ranged Multiattack Damage 1)

Defense:
Dodge 8, Parry 8, Fortitude 6, Toughness 8/6/5/3, Will 5

Totals:
Abilities 46 + Powers 4 + Advantages 19 + Skills 30 + Defenses 13 = 112 points

Complications:
Vengeance--Motivation. Family (sister). Hatred (America and Americans.) Well-Buried Sense of Honor and Humanity.
I'm not fourteen hundred years old! I've been sixteen years old fourteen hundred times, but I'm definitely not fourteen hundred years old! If you can't get that through your skull, I'm divorcing you!
Tsukasa Tsukuyomi, in
Fly Me to the Moon, by Kenjiro Hata
Post Reply