Welp, having been directed to this thread, I thought I'd immediately start bringing something new to it. Who's up for
style roleplaying? Are you? I'm not, but let's do it anyway!
Chi-Chian: The Roleplaying Game, an Introduction to Insanity
Chi-Chian is one of those RPGs based on obscure franchises that makes your brain ache simply by looking at the introduction and plot summary. The comic, the series, and indeed the game were created (at least in part) by Aurelio " Voltaire " Hernandez, and the entire thing is distinctly mindbending to read. Let's take a look at some choice quotes from the book, shall we?
Strange as it sounds, I have come to feel that Chi-Chian is a very real person and that my purpose is to be a conduit for her and her world; to see that it is allowed to exist and to thrive.
+ A reclusive albino from Titan in a bunny shaped exxo.
+ An experimental worm train prototype.
+ A sex toy robot with its head grafted onto a tentacle unit.
+ A 6-foot tall cockroach that likes to waltz.
+ The daughter of a great scientist with an experimental exxo
*tries to make sense of setting enough to explain*
D'ahh, soddit, let's get our post on!
Chi-Chian: The Roleplaying Game - Setting, or Where's My LSD?
I'd originally planned to show you the artwork in this game, but it comes in precisely two categories: Stills from the webisodes (which are awful), and stills from the comic (which are similarly awful, but pencil sketches).
Y'know what, let's just show you ye liveliest awfulness anyway. From the comic.
Now imagine that, with the occasional webisode screencap, on a black page with black and white skulls as the page markers, and white text. That is your average page of the RPG book. But enough of that, let's talk about the setting.
I've already mentioned the basic plot, and I'm linking you to the webisodes each time I post to give you some idea, but the book helpfully (or not so helpfully) spends the first 13 or 14 pages out of 145 or so giving you the following:
+ A summary of the comic's plot. It is not very sane.
+ A summary of the webisodes' plot. It, also, is not very sane.
+ One of those narrative type intros with inserts, because such things are apparently quite popular with roleplayers. If you guessed that it is not very sane, well done, you win an imaginary cookie.
So, why don't I give you an encapsulated summary, beyond what we already know?
In the "modern" day of the setting, japan owns Manhattan. Every human in Manhattan has transcended reality, then got forced back to the mortal world by one douchebag who happens to be Chi-Chian's cousin. The way to the afterlife is supposedly forever closed, because the big samurai robot made by Chi-Chian's father that made it happen so the insect races could live happily ever after was destroyed. With Chi.
Robots of all kinds are fairly common. Sexbots, although quite common, aren't really used anymore, and have become sort of an underclass. Chi-Chian is friends with one, natch. All the bad guys from the series are pretty much dead, so good luck making them adversaries.
As you can tell, even from these little pieces of setting information, the writers (Voltaire, Chris Adams, and David Fooden... no really, that's his name) didn't think this one through a lot. But even this doesn't encapsulate how sodding hard it would be to run this game (I tried. Once. Nobody understood a damn thing). For that, we're going to have to go to the encyclopedia portion later in the book.
That's right. This doubles as a guide for fans of Chi-Chian. Considering I found this in the "free" bin of the very last UK GenCon, along with Cyberpunk v3.0 and a couple of shitty DnD supplements, I think you can take an educated guess as to the size of said fanbase.
So, let's recap: We have a summary of the series and some terrible fiction in the first 13 or so pages of actual content (pages 5-18). Then, we have the actual game rules, which go from pages 19-45 (36 pages, including gear, abilities, combat, and skills).
Then we get the encyclopedia of all things Chi-Chian. It starts at p. 47, and goes on for 59 pages. It's not like the WoD thing of "Let's hurl our setting in your face before you make a character", it's, literally, an alphabetic encyclopedia of anything you might not understand about the world. Let's take a look at one of these, shall we? [My interjections will be in square brackets]
Wormtrains (Gamma, Delta) (fig 3:69 [a shitty pencil drawing])
Massive, organic worms that serve as New York's form of public mass transit.
Created by Soma Mitsui [Chi-Chian's Dad] and implemented on June 17, 3020 to serve as a form of clean public transportation, the wormtrains are sentient subway trains that shuttle the occupants of Manhattan (mostly Gamma and Beta citizens) from one place to another, much like their non-living ancestors, the New York subway system
K-Seg (Kind Segregation) (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) [presumably this means everyone is affected by it]
Kind Segregation, a unique form of mind reading and social control developed by the late Soma Mitsui [Fuck me, he got around! Anyone getting a Megaman Battle Network vibe yet?], which separates Manhattan into four Planes. Each Plane is reserved for a different kind of person based on their degree of spiritual developement. A central computer scans commuters minds for access thoughts to determine what Plane they belong to.
See Siam, Serene Theocracy of.
World War III
See Great War, The.
Heh, no problem, TombsGrave, it is, despite its many Tragic Flaws (tm), an amusing little game, although I find myself groaning at some of the things in this. Funnily enough, let's generate our first character!
Chi-Chian: The Roleplaying Game - The Hooker With A Heart of Gold (?)
So, as we've already noted, the setting is incredibly bizarre, filled with elements that make little to no rational sense. And we didn't even look at Siamese robots. Oh well, we can still look at bits of the world while making a character!
There is, quite frankly, a lot of stuff going on in the 36 pages we have, although it's interesting to note that the actual "rules" section of this chapter (the only rules section, in fact) is 8 pages, the whole shebang. This is, in fact, one of the good points of this game, but we'll get to that later. For now, making a person!
The Sensei (that's me, your friendly GM/DM/Packet of Wotsits) points out to the player (also me, but players don't have a unique term, sadly), that he has 120 "Chi Points" (that's Character points to anyone who has two brain cells to bang together) to make their whole character. At first, the player is overjoyed! Then he actually looks a bit closer.
Want to be a woman? Woman control X-Y Relax Machines with their thoughts, so it actually costs points. Want to be the Master Race (IE - The Japanese, who don't actually have any abilities, but hey, institutionalised racism!)? That's more points. Also remember that we have to buy our starting gear with this, via the roundabout route of buying money, then buying gear with it. A lot of points can be sunk, and any GM wanting to enforce in-world character rules is going to have some problems.
With all this in mind, let's just get right into it. We're actually going to spend our status and money needs before our character's stats, because that way, we actually know what we'll have to spend.
So, our concept is "Hooker with a Heart of Gold". I'll explain why when I come to it, but there's more than one reason. We will, for reasons of tradition (and extra rules abuse) make her a woman. 2 out of 120 points. We won't be going into the quagmire that is racial status yet, so she's a Taino (a term created for this game which basically means "What humanity homogenised into: They look vaguely caribbean"). She's going to be filthy rich, but also spiritually pure (Heh), so she's going to live on the Alpha Plane (2 points).
Let's take a quick breather here and look up K-Seg, to see what you need to get to the Alpha Plane as a character:
Selflessness; putting others' interests before your own; great acts of charity, bravery, or humility; self-sacrifice; innocence; tremendous empathy, compassion, and/or ability to organise for the common good
The character is a master of seduction and an expert in all things sexual [GO US!]. They know how to take a person to the heights of sexual ecstasy and make them beg for more. This is more than mere physical technique, she can interpret someone's desires from their physical and verbale cues, getting into their head to know what really gets them off. This isn't always pretty [no para breaks within skills. Never any para breaks] and characters with this ability (unless it's part of their nature to accept depravity with aplomb, like Sex Toy Robots) tend to become jaded ( But not you, you hooker with a heart of gold ). NPCs you've used your astounding sexual prowess on will tend to view you favourably, and will often bend over backwards to help you, sometimes even to the detriment of their own well-being. This is a double-edged benefit however, for if you aren't willing to bend over forwards for them (or bend them over forwards, as the case may be) in the future, they may become frustrated and cross with you, not to mention jealous if they see you favouring another.
Mettle 1 Brains 2 Health 2 (3 because extra arms) Guile 2 Virtue 1 Charm 3 (plus the bonuses from pheromones and sexings) Tech 1 Willpower 2
Female, Taino, lives on Alpha Plane, Important Career, Mildly Influential, Impressive Reputation, Beautiful (10 Status, overall)
Money: 5 Million M-Yen to spend on random shit.
Profession (Courtesan) 3 [Brains make this 5 for rolling purposes]
Pheromones (Male humans) 2 [Charm or Guile for 4 and 5]
Sexpert 2 [Charm or Guile, 4 and 5 again]
Control (X-Y Relax Tech) 1 [Willpower for a whopping 3]
Okay, sod it, I can't keep this under my hat anymore... This is gonna take a lot quicker than a month, because I am literally finding stuff by just perusing the damn main rules. And the index.
Chi-Chian: The Roleplaying Game - Rules, or Why Some Stats Are Useless.
Have another pic from the comic, because I want to give you "incentive"
So, last time, I babbled my way through the oh-so interesting means of making a character. You've seen it before, but there's something you haven't seen before: Exactly why I made such a "useless" character build for the first example.
Why? It's not as useless as it first appears, because of the system. So, let's begin by talking about what the main stats actually do , and how you roll for things in this game.
How To Roll Shit In Chi-Chian
First off, the Sensei assigns a difficulty. There is no guidance for what is difficult and what is not, by the way, and two of the four references in the index refer to... the difficulty chart at the end of the book, and the character sheet. For no reason . Expect this to become a theme.
The player then rolls 2d10. No, this isn't based on stats as such (although it will become apparent why it really is later), but, regardless of the stats or whatnot, they roll just 2d10.
Now here's where it gets slightly complicated:-
1) If there's no doubles, just add them up and compare to the difficulty. If it's over the difficulty, that's 1 success.
For every 2 over the difficulty, that's another one
Divide the roll by the difficulty, that's how many successes you get. There are degress of success, but only two degrees of failure as far as I can tell. 0 = you fail. -X = you fail
2) However, if you roll a double, you note down the total, and roll again, adding this to the first number. This carries on until you stop rolling doubles, adding each time. So, with just one crit, you can change a roll from 2-20, to 2-40, 4-60. Considering that most tests seem to be against a 6 or 7 difficulty, you can see the problem here. The maximum listed difficulty on the table is 12, but there are examples that break that over its knee later on.
3) Now here's where it gets interesting. For every point of whatever the hell stat/skill/bang bang gun you're rolling (see, it does matter!) is above the difficulty, you get a reroll. Every point . You can accept whichever damn reroll you like. For every point below the difficulty, you get a success automatically knocked off. So the difficulty number is always higher per point below. Except they say it in a slightly obtuse way.
EDIT: So obtuse, in fact, I misunderstood. See 1.
4) Finally, you can spend a point of Chi (that's your experience) to force a reroll.
So, as you may have noticed, the distribution of results is a little cackhanded, to say the least. Any degree of failure more than one is described as "remarkable, embarassing, and possibly injurious".
EDIT: I misread, and thus hadn't realised HOW cackhanded. 1 against 3 difficulty means that you will need a MINIMUM of 9 to succeed. Versus 4, this leaps to 16, versus 5, 25, versus 6, 36. Whereas, 3 vs 1, you get two rerolls, keep the best result (including doubles, which you then keep for a "reroll and add"), 4 vs 1, 3, and so on, and so forth.
Doubles then fuck this shit up, because odds are if you get a double (1/10 chance on 2d10), you're going to get a 4, a 5, or a 6 as your most likely candidates. Even hilariously bad jackholes can succeed with doubles, definitely up to 1v4, and potentially up to 1v6 or above if you're stupidly lucky.
As you might have guessed, opposed rolls use the opposed stat. So in melee, it's Mettle v Mettle, whereas in a seduction contest, it's Charm vs Willpower. Again, no guidance here, just a short paragraph, and an example of two women fighting with their minds over who gets to be served drinks first by the female-controlled robot. No, really, that's their dramatic example of an opposed contest.
So, having explained how to roll shit, let's see what we'd actually roll for what, shall we?
It lets you hit stuff. No, really, that's all that stat is, how to hit things in melee. Doesn't actually cover how much damage you do, only how well you throw punches. Melee weapons don't have an actual damage value, they add to your
Health, and then, for each degree of success rolled, you do a point of damage.
However, it does serve other purposes. It's also your "passive" dodge stat, for one (Dodging itself is a completely different thing). For another, it's one of the two stats used for your OOMF (OOH, OOH, ME FIRST! known to us plebian types as "Initiative". Don't get me wrong though, I appreciate both the bad acronym pun and the enthusiasm behind it). We'll get to OOMF and other fun mechanics in a bit though.
Finally, it's used in ranged weaponry as a to-hit. The damage, however, is generally a straight number, unless it's strength based like a bow, in which case it's Mettle + Attack Strength modifier. This will sound slightly odd in a moment.
Some skills use this, but, beyond a certain level, it's always cheaper to get the skill itself than another level in Brains. Keep remembering those opposed contests though, because, since they're the main conflict resolution mechanic, you're probably going to be asked to do something with Brains at some point. Woo.
Brains is also the other half of your OOMF base. OOMF comes from adding your Mettle and Brains for the base, and then, every time you need an initiative number, you roll 1d10 and add this.
Health is actually a measure of your general physical fitness, both in strength and constitution. You could be crap at fighting, yet still be a muscular powerhouse with this stat. I kind of like that. However, this does make for some slight awkwardness. Because Health is the Damage Resistance stat and the carrying stat.
So, let's imagine Jenny is hit by a dude with a katana (the book's example uses a knife, but I want to emphasise damage here). The dude has strength 3, the katana adds 4. To reduce the damage she takes, Jenny now has to roll against 7 difficulty. Not with her 3 Health from having multiple arms, but her 2 base Health. She needs a minimum of 5 successes to stop taking one of the minimum of 6 damage points she's going to have gotten by being hit with a katana. Just for emphasis, that's 6 damage points... out of 10.
I'll come back to that little point later. For now, let's also mention that, since Health is a measure of our physical strength, why not use it for things like clubs and bows? Because "talent in combat" is a bigger factor than how hard the damn thing hits, apparently.
EDIT: For Hand to hand/melee combat, Health is the Attack Strength (wot does the damage).
Your standard "I lie to your face!" skill. There are maybe 5 Capabilities (read: skills/feats/mutations/gewgaws) that I can find that use it. Out of 50 or 60 (Bang on 60, not counting mods). And two of them involve seduction or sex in some way.
Wondered how I can live on the ever-so-enlightened Alpha Plane as a hooker with 1 Virtue ("Spiritual energy, balance, and compassion")? Because of two things. Firstly, there's no crunch to stop you. No, really, there isn't.
"But what of the GM", I hear you say! "Surely he will put a stop to your shenanigans!"
The GM will have looked at the same rulebook I have. The rulebook where the index mentions Virtue a total of four times in the book. The index where one of these references is a page talking about why Chi-Chian might be the heir to the Mitsuru family, despite not fulfilling the strict requirements. And he will say "Fuck yeah, dumpstat that bitch".
Because Virtue has one function. It's to mark when it's time for your players to retire. When you reach Virtue 10, with all stats at 8, you start to Transcend. This effectively kills your PC when it happens. When all stats are 10, it just happens, right there and then. This is apparently one goal characters can aspire to, although not the only goal. Nice to know, thanks! Except if you actually look at the Chi entry of the encyclopedia, it also mentions having 120 chi on hand, which is mentioned nowhere else .
No, wait, I lied. It's also used for Precognition...
...Yeah, I don't think I need to say how pointless this stat is. And anyone who uses Virtue as an opposed roll in this setting is a big hairy douche, let nobody tell you otherwise.
Like Guile, only it also covers savoir-faire and style. Since "beauty" is a status thing, I genuinely don't understand why this is a stat. But there it is. Like Guile, it's used in very few Capabilities.
Can you use a toaster? Jenny can't! This is your general proficiency with technology. On the one hand, I can understand why this is here, especially with Technicians and Scientists being workable characters, and cockroaches who don't generally need all this "technology" bullshit. But considering the main villains of the Webisodes think a mousetrap is the epitome of clever and deadly death machines, with 4 story tall "Taximechs" and 250 foot Sandworms from Dune as regular modes of transport, I seriously wouldn't blame you for being a luddite in this game.
More on the 4 storey taxis in a later chapter of this review.
Ah, the vaguely useful one! This one powers most of your Control abilities (IE- the X-Y Relax Magic Feminism [Honest!] devices that apparently populate this godforsaken place), is used to resist Guile and Charm (I would hope so!), and resisting psychic attacks. Namely Telepathy, which is a Willpower skill. Telekinesis rounds it out, being one of the few ranged mutant abilities requiring it.
In any case, it's a generic "I resist social/mental stuff", and doesn't deserve in depth coverage.
Now we come to secondary stats. There are thankfully not many of these.
This, obviously, affects your social rolls. But there's one quirk of this which I will actually compliment Voltaire on. Very very mildly. Essentially, if you're using your Status in a social opposed roll (probably the only kind you can ), positive status isn't necessarily a good thing. With people of positive status, if yours is bigger, you get those magic umpteen rerolls. With people of negative status, only a... lower status gives you rerolls.
So somebody with -2 Status will be decidedly unimpressed with someone of 10 status who flaunts it, whereas he will be [i[distinctly[/i] impressed with the guy who somehow managed to accrue -17 status.
Just to make this clear (and also why it's only a mild compliment), the -2 status dude (who might just be a Good Rep Albino), will be more impressed by the New Jersey Cockroach who is utterly hideous even by cockroach standards, and is well known worldwide for blowing up Old Albino's Homes, than Jenny, the gold-hearted hooker of your dreams.
Oh, did I forget to mention that, because of a war between New Jersey and New York, people from New Jersey are automatically considered douches as far as Place of Residence Status goes?
Strength, Damage Resistance Roll, Damage
Strength is your Health, as modded by things like extra arms. Damage resistance is your Health without those gubbins. Damage is the amount of damage you can take (default 10, can be added to with Capabilities). They are boring, yet necessary things.
Have no purpose other than "Oh, My Tortured Soul!" school roleplaying. They don't even affect difficulty unless the DM says so. And since the entire difficulty thing is "What the DM assigns", with no guidelines... hope you have a nice GM!
The "Obvious" Focus
So, so far, we have a few problems cropping up already. We have a stat that's virtually useless outside of roleplaying purposes. We have three others that only affect small parts of the rules (but, as we'll see, one of them is an important part of the rules), two resistance stats, one generic stat that will turn out to be incredibly useful, and Mettle.
Combined with the 10 damage levels you can sustain before dying, and some interesting mechanics we're going to cover later, it's pretty damn obvious from a cursory examination: Mettle is really important. What makes it even more important is that most of the mutations are to do with combat in some form.
But there's one small problem. Wasn't Transfiguration mentioned as one of those "goal" thingumajiggers? Yeah, the fluff is again a bit indecisive, as it stresses how utterly dangerous the world is with the sheer amount of mutations, doesn't actually give us that many social/fluff skills, and gives us a nice big table of big stompy mechs.
That's right, the obvious focus is spectacle.
You really thought i was going to say "combat", didn't you? Find out why not... very soon.
In the meantime, have another episode:
Episode 4 - How The Hell Did I Get To Siam?
Welp, since the thread has a lot of posts with chaotic-stupid going on, I think it's a good time for...
Chi-Chian: The Roleplaying Game - Combat, And How To Break It
Some more "art" from the comic to fit the subject
Welcome back to the trainwreck that is Chi-Chian, and today, we're going to look at the combat system! Apart from a few quirks, the combat system is completely unremarkable. One standard action, one move per turn, roll initiative, go through initiative, do shit, resolve damage, rinse, repeat.
But there's always a 'But' in systems within this thread. And this is no exception. You see, combat can be broken in a number of hilarious ways.
The Power of Doubles
Thanks to the magic of doubles on two dice (1/6 on 2d6, 1/10 on 2d10, etc, etc), many rolls are easier than they appear. Yes, the enemy's always going to hit *you*, but you have a better chance than you'd think of hitting *them*. With ranged, this isn't so big a thing, because ranged weapons do fixed damage.
But melee weapons don't quite fit that rule . See, the damage they do is modded by Health, and Enhanced Strength counts toward it.
Jenny Minmaxer to the Rescue!
Jenny is helpfully going to half murder a goon for us, just to demonstrate. The goon has Mettle 3, compared to her pitiful 1. But, she gets the first go in this round, and immediately attacks with a Sword (Which has an Attack Strength of 7, thanks to Jenny having four arms and 2 Health). She needs a 9 to hit, and rolls a double 4. Then she rolls a total of 5, for 13. 2 successes. Now, this is where the rules get a bit incoherent, because there are two different interpretations of combat.
In the first, every success she has with the to-hit adds a damage level. In the second, damage levels are only caused by Attack strength, and saved against by the opponents' Health and/or Armour. The Attack Strength thing is more often referenced, so we'll use that.
This gives the poor bastard goon a chance to demonstrate doubles too. Except 3 vs 7 means he has to get 35 to succeed (28 for four levels negative discrepancy, then another 7 to succeed). He fails, with a 13, and gets negative successes.
Oh. There's no rule for negative successes on damage saves. Except, y'know, the rule at the beginning of the resolution chapter, which says something horrible happens. Let's ignore that for now. For now.
So he takes 7 damage. Y'know, out of the 10 everybody has. And then something else comes into play that's fun, and I didn't mention before. DAMAGE BONUSES. Damage bonuses are a little extra "fuck you" flavour icing on the cake, that basically adds damage on top If any damage at all gets through . In the case of a sword, that's 2. So he's taken nine damage out of the ten everyone has without Capabilities. And he's a goon, so he's a bit fucked there.
Even without that whole Negative Successes thing, he's already largely fucked, and not in the good way, by a hooker who can't fight for toffee. It even says so on her sheet.
So, what would have happened if the GM had assigned us an extra level of difficulty due to that? Well, that would have popped our necessary difficulty up to 16, and, providing she was just as jammy with her doubles the first time, would need a fairly low roll on her reroll to fuck it up.
The sword costs 250 M-Yen. That's a bit low class for us, let's fuck this one over with style!
21 CHARACTER POINT GANK (A fun game for all the family)
Use 20 Chi to get a million M-Yen per further chi. Spend just one. Use a little less than half of that million to buy a Dragon Mech (top of the line personal exxo suit). This one will fly to you from anywhere, providing you are a woman and have X-Y Relay Control. Exxos don't require Piloting to use, by the way.
This particular exo has Armour 5 (good luck hurting Jenny, meatbag), Retractable Large Claws (3 damage bonus), and Enhanced Strength 4 (replacing Jenny's four arms, or, with houserule custom mods, ADDING to it). She still can't fight for toffee, but Mettle 3 Health 3 thug is ever so slightly fucked, because this means she can do 9 damage without really trying. If Jenny decided she wanted the Mech to have a huge sword (600 M-Yen, pocket change), he would die in the first blow. The Dragon Exxo also has Armour 5. Armour 5, by the way, says "no, fuck you, I take 5 less damage regardless of what you or I roll".
Unless the goon has armour piercing, which, being a goon, he doesn't.
SEXPERT IS REALLY A BAD SKILL
Now we get to Sexpert. And Pheromones. The latter on its own would be a useful tool for calming people down or manipulating them, to be used by either gender. The former, used by either gender in anything but a mature group, is going to be CthulhuTech wrong no matter how you spin it. Using it this way is going to make you all rather ill. But god-damn, I'm going to justify this eldritch abomination, and I'm going to do it in a suitably eldritch and terrible way!
Jenny meets Goon. Goon understandably wants her dead as an affront to all feminists everywhere. Goon is a liberal male. Jenny uses her first action to convince Goon that giving her one before she goes would be a good idea. Goon, being a goon, has Brains 2. Jenny, being a horrible character that I really should have thought through before using her as a demonstration, has an effective Charm of 4, or Guile of 5 for this. Even with modifiers, poor Goon has, at best, 2 rerolls on his save, unless the GM is as horrified as I would be. In which case Jenny wouldn't exist in the hands of our example player.
Predictably, he loses. This gives her one of two options. I COULD mention how she uses Sexpert to, in a very literal sense, fuck him silly enough to let her go. Or, I could use the fact that Goon is now close to Jenny to kick off another example of broken combat.
I take a stiff shot and go for the latter option.
The Joy of Grapple, The Smoosh of DEATH.
Remember I mentioned earlier that everyone gets one standard and one move? Have some hilarity.
Goon was unlucky enough to get close to Jenny, either by her third-way feminist wiles (at least, I keep telling myself that), or through the fact that he tried to hit her (probably succeeding).
Jenny decides to grab him. Grabs are resolved like any other attack, but once grabbed, the grabbed has to beat the grabee in an opposed Health (Physical Strength) test.
Now, to be fair, they are equal. But I hadn't talked about opposed tests before. Opposed tests are exactly what they say on the tin. Goon takes a test with Jenny's 3 health as difficulty, and Jenny takes a test with GOON'S 3 health as Difficulty. Whoever scores the most successes wins. Obviously, the most common result is going to be a tie, and will take up Goon's standard action regardless. Even if he wins, and moves away, Jenny can move after him and try to grab him again.
Assuming Goon doesn't break free on his turn, Jenny has two choices. Either she can make an opposed test of her own, where any successes she makes over Goon do 1 damage, or she can just start choking him. Choking is the same as Suffocation, which means, for every turn Goon can't breathe, he has to make a Health check. The difficulty starts at 1, and goes up by 1 for every turn he cannot breathe. Once he
fails, he loses consciousness. Once unconscious, they'll take 1 damage every turn until they can breathe again, in which case they recover in 1d10 minutes. Unless they've taken 8 damage levels out of 10, which leads to the next subject.
Damage, Healing, and Falling
Now, as I've mentioned quite a few times now, every PC and NPC has 10 damage levels, unless they take a Capability that extends that (Robust, 10 Chi/Level). Once all these are gone, they have their Health in minutes before they die. Other players could use their Scientist or Technician skills to heal them (Technician has to have biotech specialisation).
But here's where it gets fun. You see, if they get to 2 or less damage levels left, and they don't have Regeneration, they're going to get... a permanent injury. If they don't succeed in a Health Roll versus the damage levels they've taken (generally between 8 and 10 difficulty as a result), they will permanently lose a damage level, and get a scar/disability/other permanent disfigurement.
Isn't it lucky that you don't take damage penalties on that roll? Oh, forgot to mention damage penalties, didn't I? For every 2 damage levels they've taken, characters get 1 less success on all rolls. Once they hit 8, they lose consciousness, and can only make (penalised) damage reduction rolls, should the enemy decide to kick them when they're down.
So, for a system that appears to emphasise combat, there really isn't much endurance to it all. As I've said before, and will say again, not a lot of thought was put into this product.
Let's move onto healing and falling, then... Healing is generally bloody slow, being 1 damage level per success on a Health roll v damage still there (2 max a week) without first aid, the same but without limitations when First Aid is used (read: Another PC or the character using Scientist... still a Health roll though), and a set level for hospitals of various qualities, being quick, but costing money.
Hospital Type Rate of Healing Cost/Day Alpha Plane 1 Level/2 days 5000 M-Yen Beta Plane 1 Level/4 days 1500 M-Yen Gamma Plane 1 Level/6 days 500 M-Yen
Trell, smitten with the lovely Chi-Chian, follows her as she jumps off the 301st floor of the Mimitsu Lines Building, which is approximately 1806 metres tall. Chi-Chian uses her BioLogic armour to slow her descent, and lands safely on a nearby rooftop. Trell, not having any such luck, falls screaming all the way to the bottom, and minutes later hits the pavement below.
Oh hey, were people talking about railroady adventures in RPGs where balance is a laughable concept?
SOUND LIKE MY CUE!
Chi-Chian: The Roleplaying Game - Realms of the WHAT?
Chi-Chian is a very strange setting. On the one hand, Voltaire was quite clearly trying for a sense of transhumanism in the world: Robots, Cockroaches, humans gene-modding themselves or mutated. But he was also going for grimdark, and the plain silly: The Patahn Pahrr are tyrannical evil monks who are mind controlled by caterpillars, wear skulls and bone-style jumpsuits, and are generally , in the Saturday AM style, while the setting's main characters include a somehow eternally naive chinese girl in the most powerful exo-suit ever made, a robot teddy bear who is an MD, and a sentient wormtrain that most likely has decidedly inappropriated thoughts about his owner.
So, we're going to wrap this up with an examination of the pre-written adventure, which showcases most of this. And then we're going to wrap it up, and move on. Thank Dog.
Welcome to "The Malodorous Seven"
Some pointless badassery to counterpoint the adventure. Not from the adventure, just the comic.
You'd think this would be a riff on something, but no, it refers to the fact that it's somehow written for seven players. You know, one more than a good 2/3 of roleplaying groups are comfortable with, if not more. There are some pre-written characters for this, but, as you'll see in my summary of them, the silliness that pervades the setting decidedly gets into the adventure...
Yuriko Nakayama - The niece of the NPC who sends us on this godawful fetch quest, she's included because "She ought to go along, her uncle sent us after all". She has a Dragon exxo, and is otherwise inconsequential.
Pavel the Cockroach - Pavel has an SMG. But weren't the cockroaches pacifist? Well, as you'll see from the remaining webisodes, that didn't last very long. This also lets us know that K-Seg doesn't affect bugs (natch, Soma the bug lover made it!)
Prahong/Pranee (Siamese Twins) - Okay, credit for at least trying to be interesting, but seriously, this "character" is a bit silly. She trained to be a paramedic, "but caused more heart attacks than they saved". They also mention that the two are arguing over a possible plot point (Mimitsu Research Initiative using untested medical drugs), which is immediately undermined by "They're so cute when they argue!". Seems not to have any links to anybody else. Great work for what is obviously the medic of the group.
Bob Dobolina, Psychic Friend - Your standard "con artist" character with a twist. He runs a psychic show that doesn't get any viewers except Bob, but he is psychic. Just not precognitive, like he claims.
Cassie O'Peagh, Pest Control - The second "unlikely buddy" pairing for Bob, Cassie is the stereotypical "I don't take shit from anybody because I'm insecure" type. Thoroughly unremarkable except for how she's tailored to the adventure (Hrm, Sewer Layout , I wonder if that's important?)
Chiri-9, Sexbot - Can best be summed up as "Hey, let's throw a lesbian relationship with a sex-toy in to highlight Cassie's 'insecurity'." She, obviously, has The Skill That Must Not Be Named.
Abdul Naseem Qafar Jamal Al-Hajeef, Taximech Pilot - No, you didn't read that wrong, he's a parody saudi. He's on speed dial as Yuriko's taximech driver, and a good excuse to mention taximechs. They're four story tall robots that you drive, with a Transport Pod for a head that can detach. They are the biggest, meanest... and most ridiculous thing in the setting. He's also notable for some obvious parody racism. Have a quote.
Abdul was raised by a strict United Arab Republican family, never to trust good fortune, and so he keeps his day job. He takes to heart the old UAR saying, "You can have liquid trees under your feet, but all it takes is one nasty army, and it all go bye-bye."
"SHUT UP! Can't you see I'm trying to think?"
"But master, I think I saw..."
"I said SHUT UP!"
The PCs see a dark figure fly into their view from around the corridor and land in the muck a few yards away. This is the hapless intern that just received the brunt of Jack's temper. A boxing glove on a spring falls to the ground on the ledge just past the turn, and then gets pulled back.