July 12, 2013

[Let's Look At] Mutants & Machine-Guns: A Gonzo Post-Apocalyptic RPG, Part 8: Creating a Mutant Human Character

Several weeks ago, I was delighted to find a couple friends of mine in my hometown have been up to something exciting, and I thought what better way than to launch a new series of posts to revive this long-dead blog. [Let's Look At] is where I try to read through and dissect every chapter and corner of a new RPG that I have yet to play, and explore it with all of my musings about its design, some notes, and experimental plays to better understand it. I don't really intend these examinations to be a review of the game, but rants and raves may seep through the seams at times.    

In my last [Let's Look At], I started getting into the character creation process and created my first character as a Pure Human. It was a quick and easy process that didn't require much thinking since there aren't that many options available to them. So now I ready to take up the challenge of creating the more wacky characters in Mutants & Machine-Guns.

Just before I was going to distribute my 8 points for the Abilities, I came across my first bump. Since Mutant Humans and Evolved Animals can start with Mutations, should I be allowed to distribute my Ability points based on the mutations that I rolled or after? Although I think this is something that should be decided by the GM, but it's a consideration that is worth stating in the rules.

So I've decided to do it in two ways. I will roll my Mutations first for my Mutant Human character before distributing my Ability points, and then I will distribute the Ability points first then roll for Mutations when I'm creating the Evolved Animal character. I think this will demonstrate just how a small difference to the approach in character creation could have an impact to the end result.

For this post, I will start off by creating the Mutant Human character.

Mutant Humans start off with two Mutations. To see what I get for my first Mutation, I rolled 2d6 and my result was  2 & 6 which makes 26 (remember how the dice are read in my post on Mutations), that gives me Life Leech! A Psionic power! Now that would give me something to think about in how I would distribute my points to my Abilities later on.

For my second Mutation, I rolled a 15 (1,5) which gives me Detonating Pods. Again as I mentioned in my Mutations post a potentially unbalanced Mutation to have for sure, so I'm lucky to get this one.

Now that I have my Mutations, I should have a high score for my Mental ability to minimise the risk of using Life Leech, which has a TN of 9 whenever I use it. So I have distributed my points to be like this:

Physical 1 (min)
Mental 3 (max)
Combat 2
Social 2

Since I didn't get any DEF-boosting Mutations, it would remain as 9.

For my Hitpoints, Mutant Humans roll 10+1d6, which I got: 10 + (1d6=5) = 15.

Now unto my starting TU. Being a Mutant Human means I only roll 2d6 without the additional 2 from Pure Humans. So I got: (2d6=5,4=9).

With that I could only afford to get a Pistol (1d6 damage, Range 2) for 8 TU, which I intend to use as my primary weapon since there is a danger to using Psionic powers, and a dagger (1d6-2 damage) for 1 TU, just in case. However, I shouldn't be too worried because I do produce 1d3 Detonating Pods that deal 1d6+2 damage every day, so I'm going to keep a distance with this character.

Creating a Mutant Human felt a little more exciting since the Mutations that you get are random, but as I said earlier, I still think that deciding how you distribute your points to your Ability before or after rolling for them can make a difference to how I plan for the character. The difference from the lower starting TU than Pure Humans is felt and does make me feel that is character is less powerful in combat though, so it does serves up as a nice counterbalance to what they get in Mutations.

In my next [Let's Look At] post, I would be creating an Evolved Animal character with a pre-defined concept that I'm going for and see whether the Mutations would favour my build after I have distributed my Ability points.

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