Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Tumbleson County Glossary Part 2

 All the different monsters I've made list various keywords as Powers.  Here's the context and mechanics for Tumbleson County's haints and monsters. 

Tumbleson County is a God-fearing patch of Earth on the eastern bank of the Mississippi River, too bad God forgot all about them.  The hunters are townsfolk, young and old, fighting to keep their town together.  Ghosts of a damnable past, and a bloodier future, rise up beneath the boughs and rotten plantation roofs sending it all tumbling down. 
Necromancer- Derived from the Etruscan tradition of communing with the dead, necromancy was once a sacred art.  True masters can do more than interrogate bones, they can command and control the mortal remains. Since the coming of Christianity the Black Art has become taboo.  Once a necromancer puts out the call, the dead rise for the next 2d6 moves.

Norn- To the layman the future is an open field of possibilities, to the fortune teller it’s a get rich scheme, to the oracle a nebulous cloud of events but, to the norn, the future is as straight forward as a railroad track.  If the hunters have earned a norn's ire then Doom is shortly at hand.  When a norn is the source of Keeper moves, then hunters have to spend an additional point of Luck to gain any benefits.

Oracle- Participating in an ecstatic tradition of seeing the future, oracular visions are a hurley-burley of conflicting images and actions.  Disorganized and conflicting from the onset, an experienced oracle massages the barrage into a rough sequence.  

Otherside- The Otherworld, Hell, the Umbra, or the Upside Down; whatever you call it the Otherside is a rough place where everything is backwards and more literal.  Left is right and right is wrong. Home to carnivorous entities such as Eidolons, 
Invert the stats rolled for moves, ex: roll +weird instead of +charm and vice versa.

Ourside- To describe Ourside as the physical world is short-selling the wondrous reality surrounding human minnows.  So much of the human mind's daily processes revolve around locking the doors of perception and staying mercifully disorganized. When you look to closely at the world, the world look back.  Attracting unwelcome attention is a soft move in Tumbleson County.

Shapeshifter-  Supernatural entities rarely hold fidelity to form, their flesh changes on a whim.  This makes corporal destruction a daunting task, especially out in the woods.  Sometimes the only way to be sure is setting a forest fire. But that comes with its own complications.

Silver Tongue- Some, like the Biblical Aaron, can sell ice to Eskimos and charm the Sun from the sky.  These golden calves are dangerous to themselves and others.  Like the Boy Who Cried Wolf they wear their veracity thin.  Any creature with this quality is a font of unvarnished truth and sincerity, until provided contradictory information hunters do not doubt them.

Sin-Eater- What's become an Appalachian tradition has its roots in the English hinter country.  Through the consumption of a ritual meal, a single person takes on the sins of a household.  In Tumbleson County, only the most trusted are allowed to perform the practice as it peels back the mask of gentility and reveals the family's myriad sins.  Sin-Eaters are a trove of discrete evils and possible blackmail.

Skin Thief- The dead don't need their covering and evil men desire to mask their sins.  With a prepared ungent, human skin, and the light of the full moon; a man may become a monster.  While wrapped in the stolen form, their conscience is suppressed and their ill thoughts spill forth.  Grotesque tableaus and violent crimes spring in the wake of skin thievery, graverobbing is just the first sign.

Spirits- Tormented echoes, whether once a dream or a living thing.  A torturous death produces a more powerful haint.  There isn’t any set form, the only thing they share is permeability.  Spirits gain power by kludging together but they then lose focus and threaten their long term existence as unfinished business becomes a poison of mass distraction. The monster moves through solid objects without hindrance and can drag hunters with them as a soft move, leaving them partly in as a hard move (5-harm)

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Tumbleson County Glossary Part 1

 All the different monsters I've made list various keywords as Powers.  Here's the context and mechanics for Tumbleson County's haints and monsters.

Tumbleson County is a God-fearing patch of Earth on the eastern bank of the Mississippi River, too bad God forgot all about them.  The hunters are townsfolk, young and old, fighting to keep their town together.  Ghosts of a damnable past, and a bloodier future, rise up beneath the boughs and rotten ceiling beams sending it all tumbling down.

Eidolon- The Greek word for apparitions, describes immaterial entities of the Otherside too great to exist on Ourside without flesh to anchor them.  Unembodied, the best they can do is leer from mirrors and other reflective surfaces. The monster always deals at least 2 points of harm, regardless of spending Luck.

Emanation- Supernaturally potent beings composing Ourside, often clothed in religious symbolism and described as gods or angels.  They command a particular portfolio of earthly properties but overlapping identities.  They will bend an ear to human supplication, but are otherwise uninterested in our mayfly existence. Confronting an Emanation causes it to passively assault your bits that fall under its sway (mark unstable, cannot be reduced.) Ie, Mother Mud causes your fertility to literally rot out of your body.

Embodied- When and Eidolon is anchored to a prepared vessel.  Could be the work of others or a supplicant.  Once embodied, our perceptions invert around the Eidolon’s true nature.  For example, Kindness is anything but sensitive to our feelings. Embodied Eidolons unleash a death curse as they're slain.
Face of Innocence- The mask of civility and normalcy remains in place because people are desperate for pacifying routine.  Some monsters prey on this weakness, blending in with the masses and obscuring their true nature to hunters.  The monster in indistinguishable from bystanders, unless a hunter exposes themselves to the true horror of reality.

Great and Terrible- Some monsters clothe themselves in atavistic fear, provoking fight or flight response in onlookers.  Hunters take -1 forward until a 10+ Acting Under Pressure breaks the fear.

ImmortalSome things are just too ornery to take the Reaper's hand, clinging to life with terrible tenacity.  This monster takes -1 harm even if the attack is armor peircing.

Juggernaut/Leviathan:  Some foes are so great that the usual tools for killing aren't up to the task.  Can only be harmed by weapons and effects with the messy tag.

Magus- Well read and learned in the dark wisdom, magi are incredibly dangerous foes to hunt. Able to bend the forces of magic and the weird to their will, the best prepared hunters are underequipped. The Keeper applies Use Magic Backlashes with soft and hard moves.

Mesmerism- Popularly known as hypnotism, meserism is concious communication with the subconcious mind.  Implanting suggestions, manipulating memory, seeding new habits or abolishing old ones; these are only the surfaceHunters start missing time, God only knows what evil they've wrought in those lost minutes.

Monday, September 12, 2016

The River Remembers

 Old Man River
The River flows through both Sides, bearing wisdom, greedy for Sky, and jealous of its past. It remembers strangling the Land for forty days and forty nights. When its grasp was broken, it took everything it could carry to the bottom.  The River longs to hold and cherish everything again, never letting go.  Its agents work to complete the River's collection one piece at a time.

The Hellion- a cursed river boat casino, "do what thou wilt" is the only rule until you're caught cheating the House.  The ship is staffed by the Union soldiers forced into the River, fleeing the Harmans' night of vicious revelry.  Passage is negotiated at the crossroads by the Burnt Up Church Place, a night on the Hellion is ephemeral and costly.
Monstrous Motivation Queen
Spirit, Juggernaut
Harm-  Bloated Boys in Blue 2-harm, messy, loud, ranged Armor- Warped wood armor-2 Health: 12 Health  
Unique Moves

The House Always Wins- When a hunter rolls 10+ the Keeper still makes a soft move. 
Stoke the Fires - When a hunter rolls +Weird, increase the harm caused by the bloated boys in blue by 1 or heal the Hellion 1 Health. 

Salome LaBeija- an agent of chaos and a seer, she uses Kindness' left eye as a crystal ball. She now dwells on the Hellion, since she was drowned in the River, offering self-fulfilling prophecies and cold reading.  Salome's upper vertebrae were harvested for gris-gris, coveted all over the region for their myriad properties.
Monstrous Motivation Trickster
Face of Innocence, Oracle, Un-Dead
Harm-  Chaos bolt 3-harm, magic, Armor- Unfeeling flesh armor-2 Health: 9 Health  
Unique Moves

Entropic Barrage - When Salome causes harm, she damages another hunter for each degree. 1 additional hunter on a full success, 2 on a partial sucess, and three on a failure.
Lightning Dance- When a storm rages overhead, Salome can appear anywhere behind a lightning strike congealing from the aftermath. 4-harm entrance. 
False Visions - Salome can actively obscure premonitions of the future, hunters take -1 forward when following her poisoned futures.

Baphomet- This great Watcher is trapped in the River's collection since the Good Granny buried its Reliquary in the riverbed.  Bound to the Hellion, s/he runs the Blackjack table and bargains for the souls of mortal folk.  The combination of opposites, its paradoxical nature allows it to slip the Keeper's leash in small ways.
Monstrous Motivation Tempter
Watcher, The Paradox, Sacred Hermaphrodite
Harm-  Gore 3-harm, messy Armor- Otherworldly flesh armor-2 Health: 13 Health  
Unique Moves
One Man's God, Another Man's Devil- When a hunter makes an offering, roll +Weird - on a 13- hold 3, 10+ - hold 2, 7-9- hold 1. Hunters may spend the hold to cause Use Magic effects in addition to Keeper moves. 
Know Thyself- When Baphomet locks eyes with a hunter, that hunter must confide their weakest moment. Afterimages haunt the hunter, -1 forward in scenes reminiscent of that moment.