Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Twas the Night Before Glowburn

To tide you all over while the latest episode cooks a holiday poem...

Twas the night before Mutagenesis and all through the landRadiation was flowing through every organ and glandWeapons were stacked by the door with careFor fear that tibbar and yvox would soon be there
The Pure Strains were nestled all snug in their bedsWhile visions of artifacts danced in their headsAnd plantients in their pots, and Manimals in their nestsHad quieted their powers for a long night’s rest 
When out in the jungle, there arose such a clatter,That the mutants all rushed to see what was the matterUp to the watchposts they flew in a flashArmed with spear, and blades, and liquids that splash
The sky-arc on the leaves of the jungle belowgave the lustre of great radioactive glow,when, what to my wondering eyes should appear,but a miniature sleigh and eight mutant reindeer.
With a little old driver, green like a slug,I knew in a moment it must be St. Doug.More rapid than devils, the creatures they came,and he burbled and hooted and called them by name:
"Now Masher! Now Lancer!Now, Smasher and Boxen!On, Comet! On, Pupid!On, Donna and Ritzen!Over the vllage!Over the wall!Now dash away! Dash away!Dash away all!"
As dry leaves that before the wild Glowstorm fly,when they meet with an obstacle, mount to the skyso into the village the coursers they flew,with the sleigh full of artifacts, and St. Douglas too.
And then, all a twinkling, and with a strange woofthe prancing and pawing of each glowing hoof.As I drew in my head and was turning around,Into my hut St. Douglas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,and his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.A bundle of artifacts he had flung on his back,and he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
Cyber eyes--how they twinkled! His dimples, how merry!Upon His cheeks grew roses, from his nose a cherry!His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,and his beard illuminated from within with a nuclear glow.
An artifact he held tight in his teeth,From it a forcefield encircled his head like a wreath.He had a broad face and a big round belly,that shook when he moved, like a captured ooze or jelly.
Part mutant, part plantient, and maybe part elf,I saw that he was just a seeker like myself.A flash in his eye and I was filled with such dreadBut I soon realized he wasn’t here for my head.
He spoke without words, and went straight to his work,He filled the armory, then turned with a jerk.And laying his finger aside of his nose,and pressing a button, into the sky he rose.
He flew to his craft, to his team gave a shout,And away they all flew before any knew they were about.But I heard him exclaim, as he flew from my sight,"Happy Mutagenesis to all, and to all a good night!"

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Episode 25 Mutagenesis

Episode 25 GenCon 2019 - Mutagenesis

Spiders & slugs, and Con-crud bugs...

James - Mucousitron Rex

  • Pretty lazy right now, so here’s the deal
  • Mucousitron Rex, Slime Sorcerer of the Seven Circles and Slug God of Sagittarius A
    • 10th Level Chaotic Wizard
    • Pretty much all the spells
    • Stats are all 18’s
  • Wait, you want some mechanics? Okay how about this:
    • Mucousitron Rex can enter into any campaign in any game system. D&D 5e, Pathfinder, Savage Worlds, Cypher System. 
    • Due to his power of time and slime:
      • A) The game mechanics of that campaign automatically turn into DCCRPG
      • B) anyone who tries to face him immediately gains all of the abilities of a random zero-level character. 
    • So if Mucousitron Rex were to go into a D&D 5e campaign, and there was some super powered, min-maxed to hell 20th level ranger that tried to attack Mucousitron Rex… BOOM, now that character has the stats of a 0-level gongfarmer. 

Marc -  Fire Spiders

  • So this is a weird intersection between science and human nature. I was watching the Indy 500 earlier this year and after a crash one of the drivers jumped out and got hosed down by the fire crew. I don’t know if he was on fire or if it was preventative because as it turns out the high alcohol content Indy-car fuel burns almost invisibly in daylight.
  • This also reminded me of the seemingly natural reaction of all people to flip out when they walk into an unseen spider web (especially if its right across your face).
  • Enter the intersection of these two phenomenon: Fire Spiders!
  • Fire spiders weave near invisible webs of silk that is doped with certain chemicals. When the spiders prey touches the web it both sticks to them AND ignites with an intense by night unseeable flame.
  • The spiders themselves are large, about the size of a small cat or dog, and eat voraciously from their immolated and entrapped prey.
  • Fire Spider
    • Init: +6 Atk +3 Bite (1d8 damage, plus paralytic poison on DC 14 Fortitude), SP Fire Web (trap, 1d8 damage per round, plus entangle DC 10+ Reflex save, increase up to DC 18 depending on size of web and how much touched), HP 3d4, AC: 16, Saves Fort +3, Reflex +5, Will +2, 

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Episode 24 Mutagenesis

Episode 24 Hex Crawls - Mutagenesis

Party bugs, chugs, and food stuffs!

Guest Judge Reid - A.N.D.: Alien Nurishment Device

  • A 6” cube with an asymmetrical, unlabeled touchpad on one side and an extrusion port with button on the opposite side. 
  • Activating the device is quite simple: just point the extrusion port downward and press the button next to it. Then it will produce 1d3+1 meals worth of foamy nutrient porridge. 
  • The touch pad controls all of the settings, including flavor selection and the base source for the cube to draw raw materials for its food production (originally, nutrient vats located aboard a spacecraft). If the settings are not tuned correctly, it will produce flavors at random (including unpalatable, extraterrestrial flavors) and have a 66% of drawing the necessary raw materials from a random organic source within 100’ (causing 1 point of Stamina damage per serving generated).
  • The A.N.D. will function up to six times within any 24 hour period. If over use is attempted, the cube will become unresponsive until the proper amount of time has passed. 

James - Crystal Pepsi

  • A very special beverage after receiving high doses of radiation from the great disaster
  • Upon drinking at least 12 oz of Crystal Pepsi, the user can “Crystal Burn” their stat pools
  • For an hour, each point of Crystal Burn to Strength, Stamina, or Agility allows a +1d3 bonus to any stealth related tasks as the user becomes more invisible…hence the crystal effect 

Marc - Time Flies

  • Giant mutant insects are already a thing in the book (look up devils)
  • But what about NON-giant mutant insects?
  • I mean, like, other than mouse-quitos…
  • Like what happens when a fly gains the ability to bite somebody and send them forward in time?
  • Time Flies! HA!
    • AC 20 (seriously, swatting temporally actives flies is HARD), 1 HP
    • Attack +5, Deal 1 point of damage and send target 1 minute into the future...

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Episode 23 Mutagenesis

Episode 22 Dark Trails - Mutagenesis

Party reaction time, orange demons, and history buff mutants!

Guest Judge David - Pooled Initiative
  • Have a single player roll a d20 and then each player modifies that roll with their Agility & Initiative bonuses
  • Makes things quicker & keeps the party’s initiative more tightly clustered.
  • Find David at...
    • Facebook DarkTrailsRPG
    • Darktrailsrpg@gmail.com
James - GRITTY
  • Some call him the fun, orange new mascot of the Philadelphia Flyers. Others call him pure nightmare fuel.
  • I call him the perfect mutagenesis creation 
  • Init: +3; Atk Belly Bump +5 melee (2d7+4) or Googly Eye Laser Beams 2d16 (1d10); AC 15; HD 10d6; MV 2d4x10’/rnd as he bumbles about; Act 1d20 or 2d16 Googly Eyes; SP “Gritty’s Return”; SV Fort: +5, Ref -2, Will +2 
  • Special Rule: Gritty’s Return 
    • Whoever kills Gritty becomes the next Gritty. The player temporarily loses control of their character, and the PC forms a giant orange cocoon. This happens right then and there, almost instantly. The cocoon is impervious to all damage or energy sources. The cocoon hatches the next time the Flyers play in real life. Based on the time of year, this could be a long time. Better have a backup character. 
    • The PC gains the Belly Bump attack (with 2d7 + Str mod damage), and the Googly Eye Laser Beams. AC gains +2 but can’t wear armor. Also the weird, bumbling movement.
    • Gritty can stay in the party, but to use D&D terminology, he is Chaotic Evil. Keep that in mind 
    • If someone kills the PC, a new Gritty returns. If it isn’t another PC, use the stats above 
Marc - Invisigoths
  • What happens when a stable subgroup of mutants who all possess Holographic Skin find historical texts about the sacking of Rome?
  • Well obviously you get a rampaging horde of “barbaric” mutants who can blend into their environment which is both fun and dangerous!
  • These guys love to stage ambushes and or reconnoiter enemy camps before attacking. Either way a fiendish judge should be able to get a lot of fun use from these folks.
  • Stats
    • Init +7; Atk Sword/spear +4 melee (1d6+3), Short Bow +3 ranged (1d6+2); AC 13; HD 4d10; MV 30’; Act 1d20; SP Holographic Skin (+4); SV Fort +3, Ref +4, Will +3; AL C.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Episode 22 Mutagenesis

Episode 22 Hiero's Journey - Mutagenesis

Tributes ahoy!

James - The Stick Of Smite

  • This one’s just a tribute to a nearly 3 year long campaign that just wrapped up
  • Stick of Smite
  • The Stick of Smite:  1d6 damage, +2 to hit and damage against anyone, or any creature, whose name begins with an "R."  Also against pirates... arrgh...]
  • Die Rodney
  • Making magic items fun and on the fly. 

Marc - Radiangel

  • What happens when a tribe of survivors finds a stockpile of highly radioactive rings and takes to wearing them as tiaras, crowns, headbands, etc?
  • Well they mutate all to heck and after generations they become Radiangels. 
  • Weirdly, Radiangels have bred out the most volatile genetics and have settled into a stable mutation pattern that manifests during puberty when the Radiangel child is given their “halo”. 
  • All Radiangels have Wings and Light Generation, and about 50% have another random mutation.
  • Radiangels are very inclined to follow the rules of their elders and consider Mutants to be the true innocents of Terra A.D. and will often come to the aid of mutant who are willing to 
  • Stats
    • Init +5; Atk Sword +5 melee (1d8+3), Light Generation +5 ranged; AC 15; HD 5d8; MV 30’ or 50’ by flight; Act 2d20; SP Immune to Radiation; SV Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +3; AL L.

Forrest -

  • Rogues Gallery: an old school 1st edition AD&D book containing some of the characters run in the original Greyhawk campaign and other early AD&D campaigns. Unique personalities and characters that informed a LOT of how I created NPCs when I DM’d.
  • I’d like to take the starting shot at a Rogues Gallery for Umerica and MCC. I’ve mentioned this character before on the podcast a few times. He or it has played in every playtest of Killer of Giants, and everyone has a little different twist on him, but no matter who plays him, the adventure ends up going insane with him at the center of the insanity. He will also be available as a pregen when I run The Tower of the Flower of Power at Garycon. I’m hoping someone picks him up and that crazy things ensue:  

Monday, February 4, 2019

Episode 21 Mutagenesis

Episode 21 Star Crawl with Jonathan Snodgrass - Mutagenesis

Loony toons, games of chance, quantum madness, and a "fountain" of youth...

Jonathan - Nomad
  • Alien probe desiring only to “sterilize” disorderly beings (“Non-sequitur: your thoughts are uncoordinated”)
  • Incredibly powerful foe: 
    • AC 25, HP 60, Fort +16, Ref -4, Will +16, 2d20 dmg death ray, can drain knowledge & experience on contact (level drain)
  • Extremely vulnerable to logic puzzles: with an Int check (DC 16), Nomad can be locked into a crippling logic loop 
James - Gnolams
  • Alternate Race Template for Space Crawl: Gnolams
  • From Master of Orion 2, which gives me lots of Star Crawl feels
  • I spent so much time playing MOO2 in College, it cost me some grades. And Gnolams were my favorite species. 
    • 0-g species who are master traders
    • Stat Adjustments: Strength -1, Personality +1, Luck +1
    • Starts with an additional random item roll  on page 32. +1d credit die.
    • Special Abilities: Deal Maker. Any time making a Personality roll to cement a trade deal, gets +2d to the roll (effectively rolling a d30). In addition, the Gnolam always ends up with 137.5% the value of the deal. It’s just crazy that way. 
  • Find an official Star Crawl Race Template card here!
Marc - Time Jump Belt
  • So, the Ancients were pretty smart, and they knew that time travel was possible, but the toll it takes is pretty rough. 
  • Mostly its an energy input thing. Lots of energy is needed to push through time in the wrong direction. 
  • There’s also the issue of movement. The earth spins, the earth revolve around the sun, the whole solar system moves as the galaxy spins. Travel back in time and you end up in empty space not yet occupied by the earth unless you also can travel in space at the same time.
  • Long story short time travel consumes vast amounts of energy
  • The Time Jump Belt is pretty much a miracle then.
    • Tech Level 6
    • CM 5
    • Power: must use Q-cells which are entirely drained in the process
    • Effect: The user can teleport backwards in time and space up to a maximum of 1 turn, or as little as 1 round. 
Forrest - Jingle Balls
  • As you have gathered from my previous mutagenesii, the Ancients were very smart, as Marc points out. But they were also jerks. At least my ancient ones were jerks. Want proof? Here it is:
  • Jingle Balls.
    • I know what you’re thinking, and you can pull your mind out of the gutter right now.
    • I’m referring here to jingles, you know, advertising music. Or, more broadly speaking, any music that annoys you and that you can’t get out of your head. There’s an artifact for that!
    • So simple, yet so profoundly annoying. The ancients knew advertising. They knew music and advertising have a long, hideous history with each other. And they wanted an easy way to advertise in public spaces. So they invented the Jingle Balls.
    • A jingle ball is a small, spherical metal ball with no features. One merely needs to drop the jingle ball from waist height onto any reasonably hard surface to activate it.
    • Upon hitting the hard surface, the jingle ball emits music that is especially engineered to be an “ear worm,” making its way into your brain, throwing one’s concentration, and generally unnerving any person within a 20’ radius. 
    • Anyone in that 20’ radius when the ball drops must make a DC 14 Will Save or suffer the following effects:
      • All initiative rolls are at -1
      • The ability to cast spells, use psionics, or use any mental mutation that takes any degree of concentration is lost
      • Combat to hit rolls are made at a -1 as the affected target tries to match shots and swings to the beat of the music, throwing off their natural rhythms
      • All intelligence bonuses are lost
    • Now, you might say “Judge Forrest, you didn’t provide a duration for these effects,” to which I say “Neither did the ancient ones. Didn’t I tell you they were jerks?”
    • These effects continue until, you guessed it, the player - the PLAYER, not the character - sings the jingle, with VIGOR, please!
    • You’ll notice that I am not supplying any jingles - those are up to the Judge. I suggest using songs that are really annoying to the one who must sing them. For example, Judge James would be sure to afflict me with “What’s Love Got to do, got to do with it?” Whereas, the Glowburn Judges might use “Come on Hector, finish what you started” for our Patron AI of audiovisual engineering. Whatever is most annoying to that player, that is what the judge should use.
    • Jingle Balls were geared for humans, so others gain a bonus to their save:
      • Plantients get a +3 because they don’t even know what music is
      • Manimals get a +1 unless the jingle involves animal sounds. For example, the PureDNA Cat Chow song “meow, meow, meow, meow” would negate a manimal’s bonus to their Will save.
      • Robots get a +1 save versus anything that isn’t techno, which negates their save.
    • Like any good jingle (and herpes), the jingle ball is the gift that keeps on giving. Once someone has failed a save versus a jingle ball, that person is susceptible to a return of the jingle should they take a critical hit to the head or face. In this case, the same rules apply as before, though the character’s ability to properly sing the song away may be limited due to missing teeth, tongue, etc. PLAYERS should roleplay accordingly.
    • Enterprising players will instantly recognize the jingle ball as a sort of hand grenade to annoy enemies with or to threaten the rest of the party to get what they want.
    • The jingle ball never runs out of energy or songs . . . ever. But it can be crushed by a blow that inflicts 12 points of damage at once. Entire rooms full of crushed jingle balls have been discovered, but no one dares enter such rooms, just in case . . .