Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Experiments Part 1 (of 2) - Doppelgangers

In the past, before the current truce between the major races of the galaxy, some experimentation was carried out that is nowadays considered to be unethical. In the current times if it is found out you are participating in these experiments it generally leads to execution. The races still secretly carry out these experiments, but when they begin to come to the attention of the rest of the galaxy it is quickly shut down, usually with the execution of the members involved directly (a lot of scientists find it worthwhile, but it is not without it is consequences).

Probably the two most significant and noticeable introductions into the galaxy because of this experimentation are two unique races; Doppelgangers and Giants.
  This post is part 1 about the Doppelgangers, and the next will be about the Giants.

Doppelgangers are an extremely small group of beings in the Silver Divinity galaxy. During the galaxies past when the major races were fighting amongst themselves, some of them tried their hands at making their soldiers better. Probably the most successful of these experiments was the Doppelganger. The Doppelgangers came about from an attempt to create a stealth soldier that could withstand various environments and blend in with whatever creature they were sent to watch.

At first the results turned out favorably but the Doppelgangers intelligence started to quickly outpace their creators. There were a few attempts at escape by the Doppelgangers, but none were successful at first. Once the leaders of the organizations working on these experiments noticed the Doppelgangers growing defiance and intelligence they moved to shut down the experiments and dispose of the Doppelgangers already created.

When the first small groups of Doppelgangers were killed the rest rose up in a more concentrated attempt to escape. In the chaos created by the destruction orders and the Doppelgangers natural abilities their attempts at escape were successful. Not all of them made it out, but roughly one hundred escaped. With their natural abilities to change their bodies making their way off the planet was simple enough for them. After getting away the majority of the Doppelgangers found a fairly isolated planet to create a home for themselves. A small group of Doppelgangers however did not like the idea of isolating themselves, especially while staying within close proximity to each other. They thought, correctly, that they would be hunted down and staying together in one place just made them easy targets. Although a few have been found and killed since their escape, the home that the others created has not been found.

Doppelgangers are unique in many ways. They are not a natural creation of the galaxy, and except for the deity in the Galaxy they are the only immortal race. They can still be killed like most anything, but old age will never be a problem for them. Their ability to take on the shape of the other races makes it easy for them to stay hidden, and although the physical transformation is flawless the mannerisms are something they have to learn. The Doppelgangers that are among the other races usually study the race they hope to copy for a few years before they have the mannerisms down perfectly. Languages are easy for them to learn, usually taking a day or two to get a language down flawlessly.

They ability to change form is unique in the sense that they can take any creatures form. Normally this is done within a minute or two depending on the changes having to be made; but when changing form from a humanoid to an Insectoid the transformation takes up to an hour or more. This is mainly to do with the bone structure differences between the two.

In general intelligence Doppelgangers are more intelligent than the majority of the other races, although there are a few individuals around the galaxy who can match their intellect. Doppelgangers are perfectly capable of having children, but this happening is rare. Since their escape there have been only two true Doppelganger children born, with others bearing children that belong to whatever race they are emulating, or whatever race their partner belongs to.

Although Doppelgangers can be extremely powerful compared to the other races of the galaxy due to their abilities and life span, they typically stay in the shadows, preferring to avoid taking part in galactic events. The few Doppelgangers that have been killed is mostly due to their attempts at taking part in grand events that eventually reveled their true identities, even if not to the galaxy as a whole, but to the organizations wishing to exterminate them.

Example Doppelganger

Miller (among his own people, various other names among other races)

HP: 24
Initiative: 17           

STR: 2
DEX: 3
CON: 2
INT: 8
WIS: 6
CHA: 8

Base Movement: 50 ft.
Run: 100 ft.
Sneak: 25 ft.

Athletics (STR/DEX): 8 ranks
Bluff (CHA): 8 ranks
Charm (CHA): 8 ranks
Dodge (DEX): 8 ranks
Empathy/Sense Motive (WIS): 4 ranks
Perception (INT/WIS): 8 ranks
Weapons (all ranged) (DEX): 8 ranks

Specialty Skills:
Computers (INT): 8 ranks
Disguise (WIS): 8 ranks
Disarm Mechanical Device (DEX/INT): 8 ranks
Pick Pockets (INT): 8 ranks

Immortal: Doppelgangers never age, and cannot die from old age.

Adaptability: Doppelgangers can survive extreme environmental conditions such as extreme hot or cold. This does not render them immune to cold or fire damage from spells or weapons.

Change form: Doppelgangers can take on the physical form of any creature they have taken the time to study. This transformation usually takes a minute or more depending on the changes involved. If changing form from a flesh and blood creature to an Insect creature the transformation takes an hour or more.

Black Sheep: Miller is a black sheep amongst his family, they are not hostile towards him, but he must work with them in order to get them to help him in any way.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Father's Day and Pokemon

So for Father's day this year I wanted to do something different with my children, well mostly with the oldest as the other two aren't quite old enough to sit down and try to play a game with yet.

My oldest daughter really enjoys Pokemon, and a while back I found a Pokemon Tabletop game that a group of people have put together. I thought she would enjoy it if we tried it out this weekend.

I cut out a few of the more complicated parts of it, while leaving the major portions of the game intact. We just got done playing it a little while ago, and although I now know that I need to do more prep work before we play again, she enjoyed it immensely. My wife enjoyed it also which is great!

Now that we have figured the basics of it out I think we are going to try to turn playing this with our oldest daughter a more frequent thing.

We didn't get super far, although technically we weren't really shooting for anything specifically besides leveling up and catching new Pokemon.

Barbara (my oldest daughter) started out with a lvl 5 Meowth, and when we stopped she had captured/befriended a lvl 2 Weedle, a lvl 3 Krabby (which has already jumped to level 6), and a level 5 Scyther.

Kim (my wife) started out with a lvl 5 Evee (which is now a level 6 Leafon), and captured a lvl 2 Weedle (which she released) and befriended a lvl 5 Bulbasaur.

All in all it was an amusing game that had some interesting elements, especially the befriending Pokemon instead of battling against them. We will have to see how far we can go with it now, but regardless at least it is a fun game I can now play with my children.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Ant (Insectoid)

So I was planning on the Insectoid and Avian racial descriptions to be shorter so I could possibly put them all together in a group (well a group for Insectoid and a group for Avian), but I started writing on this one and it ended up longer that I originally intended. Regardless though, I like how it turned out. So here is the first of the Insectoid races for my game.

The Ant Insectoid race has physical similarities with most earth ants. They stand slightly taller than the average human, and they have 4 legs attached to their lower abdomen that they use for walking. Their upper abdomen has 2 arms (slightly varied legs) that can be used for walking, but are primarily used to perform manipulations much like a humans hands. Their bodies color can vary between different colors, but typically it is some shade of red, or black.

Although large parts of their society have changed from their origins, their physiology has prevents certain things from changing. Ants are social creatures, and prefer the company of people, even if it is not of their own species. The majority of the Ants encountered around the galaxy are females, males are present but it is almost impossible to tell them physically apart from the females. Each colony of Ants has a Queen, which is where all the offspring for the colony come from. The males of the colony are responsible to ensuring the Queen keeps having offspring, although of late more and more male Ants have been able to leave and explore the outside world. Some Ants prefer this method of doing things, seeing it as normal and how their race is supposed to reproduce; but there is a growing faction that is actively trying to change this. Although since it is not a life style choice, but a physiological problem it is slow going to find a way to allow more females to reproduce and change their dependency upon this system.

Although all the Insectoids are looked upon warily by the other races of the galaxy, Ants are probably the most widely accepted species. This is partially due to their social nature, and their general willingness to do what is needed for the community they are living in. A growing population of Ants has started trying to assert their individualism; this is mostly isolated to individuals living outside of the colonies among other races. The easiest way to tell these individuals apart is by their practice of dying their exoskeleton various colors, or by having designs painted onto them instead.

Because of their armor like exoskeleton, and their increased strength most Ants focus on melee fighting when they are forced to fight, although they are more than capable of wielding ranged weapons. Because their physical differences certain equipment has to be special made for them to wield, which makes some of their equipment slightly more costly to obtain.

One similarity between all of the Insectoid races is their inability to speak the other humanoid races languages. They can learn to understand it with no problem, but the differences in their bodies make it impossible for them to actually speak it. The same holds true in reverse also; the dedicated humanoid can eventually learn a rudimentary understanding of the Insectoid races various languages, but they can never speak that language. Humanoids however can have modifications done to their bodies in order to be able to pick up on the chemicals that are used and make up part of the Insectoids languages, making it at least less likely to have a misunderstanding because of communication.

Arlian                    Ant (Insectoid)                          Female

HP: 12
Initiative: 3              
Movement: 40ft.   Run: 80ft.   Sneak: 20ft.

STR: 4
DEX: 1
CON: 2
INT: 0
WIS: 3
CHA: 0

General Skills:
Athletics (STR/DEX): 4 ranks
Empathy/Sense Motive (WIS): 4 ranks
Hand to hand (STR): 8 ranks
Perception (Search, Spot & Listen) (INT/WIS): 4 ranks
Bladed Weapons (STR/DEX): 4 ranks
Bludgeoning Weapons (STR/DEX): 4 ranks
Improvised Weapons (STR/DEX): 4 ranks

Specialty Skills:
Survival (WIS): 4 ranks

Endurance: You have greater endurance than most, when performing a task that is physically taxing (involves STR or CON check) you get to add +2d to your check. (i.e. running for extended periods, holding your breath, or holding someone down for example).
Expert (Hand to Hand): You have a spark of genius in a particular skill. Starting the game you can raise that skill to 8 instead of 4, and later you can spend points to raise that skill up to 12.
Powerful Charge: When you make a charge attack you gain +6d to your damage instead of the normal +3d if you connect. Other penalties still apply.
Unarmed Attack: When fighting unarmed you can add +2d to your combat roll in order to strike an opponent, showing your training in fighting without weapons.


Racial Abilities:
Bite (Hand to hand): You can attempt to bite an opponent. It is counted as an unarmed attack with +2d to attack, and 2+STR dice in damage.
Improved Grab: If an opponent is hit with your bite you can attempt a grapple automatically.
Natural Armor +1

Monday, June 3, 2013


Dragons are something I like a lot, and I've been thinking about trying to fit them into the Silver Divinity galaxy. As of this moment I have yet to come up with any ideas that I like, or that fit with the galaxy I have in mind.

The one thing I have found that I liked so far is a small idea in that dragons are somewhere in the galaxy but they tend to keep to themselves, and only a very small handful of people know where they actually are located. I also would like them to be intelligent, and not just bestial creatures.

This is a fairly short post considering its been a little while since I posted last, which I missed posting during a couple of events I originally intended to.

Over the last week though I've had my hot water heater stop working, and although we've got it started again (its electric) it is leaking every so lightly, but enough to have to replace it sadly.

The day after that stopped working temporarily our air conditioning decided it was tired of working also. We got it working again too, but yesterday it decided to stop for good. Luckily my mothers fiancee had a window unit for us to borrow until we can get our main unit working, which hopefully won't take too long.

So between those two and having a lot of dental work done I've been fairly distracted from everything. This is the end to my short ramblings for now.