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An Aberrant fan upgrades to Continuum. (A Lets Read).

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  • #16
    Chapter Two: Character Creation Part 3: Skills and attributes.

    My favorite thing about the word „obvious” is the sheer variety of what one person considers to be so, yet utterly baffles another.
    Specialties not adding to the Skill you have them in sound both counterintuitive and more time consuming than the Storyteller model.
    Miclenaous note: The text seems to change between „X Enhancement” and „X-point Enhancement” with a to me not obvious Pattern.

    Skill Tricks:
    It stays that the characters start with 1, yet under „Step Three: Skills, Skill Tricks, and Specialties” it says that they do not start with skill tricks.

    Actual skills: Mostly as bullet points that catch my eye,
    • When all you have is a gun…
    • Shoot to Injure sounds op. What is stopping the player ending a boss fight on round 1 with a lucky roll?
    • Kool-aid Man: Athletics 5
    • Close combat doesn't get analog to Aim’s instant takeout.
    • Grain of truth: As the honorable judge can see, it was the chupacabra all along.
    • Elite Hacker: This one is strangely Talent focused. I thought Skill tricks were supposed to be template agnostic
    • Some dice adders are once per scene some are not. It took me this far to notice.
    • That Was Already Mine: Now we just have to wait for Aberrant to walk away with the statue of liberty.
    • I will have to come back to this section when I have read the actual rules they reference. I think it would have been better to cover Chapter Three before Chapter Two.

    The overall impression on Skill Tricks: I am not sure „Remove an enemy as a treat” or „Automatically escape from a binding (and bind another character)” has the same value as „-1 TN”. I mean all of these are situational, but some just seem flat out better than others.

    Worse consequences down the line seem like something caused by taking the wrong approach than something specific to finesse.
    Being able to ignore the pain for minutes might as well be high Stamina (or even resolve) than low Cunning. Actually, some of the one-dot disabilities could make a pretty useful power in the right circumstances.

    Next Time: Edges


    • #17
      I really like the halo effect from specialties instead of just making you better at the thing you're already really good at. It's let characters in my game do things they don't have a lot of dice in but still be successful thanks to the Enhancement.


      • #18
        Chapter Two: Character Creation Part 4: Edges

        So Backgrounds/Merits make their comeback in The Form of edges. In the system’s predecessors, these generally fall into three categories. Those that enable you to do something you otherwise couldn’t, those representing external resources such as social connections and real estate, and numbers go up. My usual preference towards them is in this order. Even if numbers go up are often the workhorses. So let's see how Storipath fares.

        Mental Edges:
        - That I cover this before the actual rules strike again, but this sounds like a penalty negator. And as such, falls under numbers go up.
        - Huh. Performance returns not as a Skill but as an Edge. About half the wordcount of it is examples + reminder that you can use any dice-pool you can justify.
        - Danger sense: I don’t know about people, but roll to notice half the things on this list seems like they should be inherent to the characters.
        - Will save goes up. Also unless I missed it, this is the first actual use of the word Inspired in the book. Looking back, it is missing from the lexicon. The generic world for a powered individual seems more relevant than „proxy”, but that may just be me.
        - I could use speed reading. The pace is more time-management issue, but it's just good real-life utility.

        Physical Edges:
        - Wonder if penalty negated by the edge is mentioned anywhere else.
        - Various numbers go up.
        - Numbers go up done flavorfully in Ms. Fix It.
        -Also, making things seems to be under physical.

        Social Edges:
        - Alternate identity: The essential cornerstone for everybody with a double life.
        - Wonder if Aeon introduces interstellar level of fame?
        - Path Challange sounds specific, but Ctrl+F throws no result outside this Edge.
        -Generic +2 Complication shows its face again.
        - The problem that the order of purchases influence how much wealth remains is inherited. Also „In most cases, financial Complications can substitute successes for cost dots.” I assume this means, either that I can ignore a +2 complication for a wealth 2 purchase instead of 2 success, or failing to buy it down reduces wealth by 2. Not really clear wording.

        Style Edges
        - Detonations Training: Make things blow up, blowing things up better, not getting blown up. The order of these may or may not have any effect on the population of demolition experts.
        - Forceful Martial arts: Knocking people down, making people stay down, not getting knocked down. Is the third one being defensive going to be a pattern?
        - Free running: This does what it says on the tin, and does it well.
        - Precise Martial Arts: More focused on staying alive than the Above. I am going to assume that you can’t combine the two.
        - Sniper: Snipe more reliably, snipe better, your awesomeness inspires your gun to snipe better. Fairly straightforward. Almost expected not getting sniped to show up.

        Advanced Combat Maneuvers:
        - Being though helps to toughen up your armor.
        - Not getting shot when moving between covers. On every X-COM trooper’s wish list.
        - Combine this with the one-shot takeout skill trick for quick room clearing. Wait does having close combat as a prerequisite means that you cannot use it with Aim?
        - Shot the gun, not the shooter!

        Powered Edges:
        - Get cool stuff, get more Hp, get higher trait cap. Not much to say here.

        Enhanced edges:
        - Get more untrackable, get more cool stuff. So far, keeping with the promise of being edge+.
        - Is the cost of Point of inspiration means that this is Talent only or just the developers not generalizing before the other splats come out?
        - Get richer, get some damn respect (And thus you no longer need to Show Them All), get better cool stuff


        • #19
          Chapter Three: Storypath System
          Also Known as the chapter I should have covered out of order.

          Art: It has been some time since the last one. I think the camera caught the smug profile of the woman being interrogated.
          Churchill quote: I think some of the Duttontech security might disagree.
          Some facts and claims about the system. Also, I appreciate that they make their assumptions about the default way it is assumed to be run clear. It didn’t work for a Vampire (Capes with fangs anyone?), but I appreciate it.

          The Core Mechanics:
          Huh, Dramatic failure is „back” to 0 success + 1 comes up instead of voluntary.
          A lot of this is covered in the first post, or familiar to Storyteller/ing system veterans. Don’t roll for rutin stuff, The dice-pool is an Attribute + Skill pairing you can justify, bonus successes are called Enhancements and only added if at least one success is rolled.
          Art: Conservation of Energy would like to have a few words with the lady. Also, I am not sure legs can bend that way. The dude’s face is priceless though.
          I like the idea of mixed actions, but what does this line mean:
          „She can choose to assign dice to a single action in order to succeed at that action if she does not net enough successes to succeed at both.”
          I mean, if she already rolled for successes then what dice are we talking about?

          Target number depending on Tier. There is a table with what I so far assumed would be templates but it seems they are also Tiers. Also didn’t we establish like in the Introduction that Aberrants and novas are the same things? Why the redundancy?

          Complication examples do not bring up +2 example. Everything ads +2 complication, except the examples.
          Any reason why not just spend the leftover successes on the variable stunts?
          Momentum can be spent either before or after the roll, but only once per roll. It might be the source of the mysterious after roll dice in the mixed action section. If I am correct then you can only spend momentum to succeed on one failed action in the mix, even in case of multiple failures.
          Tilts got renamed to Fields.

          It’s about representing that things are on a different level when it comes to some quality.
          The Narrative Scale is for trivial stuff and carving thought mooks. Dramatic scale for stuff people care about.

          Is it just me, or the scale start losing granularity as it goes up.
          Just looking at size:
          The difference between Scale 1 average human and scale 4 blue whales: 25m/1.6m= 15.625 times(Using either weight or Volume would produce a bigger numbers).
          The difference between Scale 5 Statue of liberty and Scale 6 Mt Everest 8 848/93= 17.118 times as big. (Ditto)
          So if a nova grows 100m tall, is there 1 or 3 Scale difference between him and the mountain?
          Scale and tier: If I remember correctly, in the System’s previews there was a table with Tier 1-4 and the Tiers’ effects. It doesn’t seem to be replicated in this book.

          Units of Time: Mostly inherited from Storyteller, but with less direct mapping of narrative time units to real-time.

          Next Time: Action Types and Sequences
          Last edited by Zsarnok; 04-08-2020, 12:50 PM.


          • #20
            Originally posted by Zsarnok View Post
            „She can choose to assign dice to a single action in order to succeed at that action if she does not net enough successes to succeed at both.”
            I mean, if she already rolled for successes then what dice are we talking about?
            The dice showing successes. Whoever wrote that thinks physically.

            So if a nova grows 100m tall, is there 1 or 3 Scale difference between him and the mountain?
            Spoilers: The way the original Kickstarter manuscript for Aberrant handled Growth was by having it give you Size scale instead of making you grow to X height. So, if Mount Everest is Size scale 6, then a Nova who grows to Size scale 5 would have one level of difference.


            • #21
              Originally posted by Florin View Post

              The dice showing successes. Whoever wrote that thinks physically.
              Originally posted by Florin View Post
              Spoilers: The way the original Kickstarter manuscript for Aberrant handled Growth was by having it give you Size scale instead of making you grow to X height. So, if Mount Everest is Size scale 6, then a Nova who grows to Size scale 5 would have one level of difference.
              Hmm. I get that Scale is supposed to be a „soft” measure, its still strange to see basically the same ratio between 1-4 and 5-6

              If anyone is interested here are the ratios if using volume instead of Height/length. (I am not doing by Weight, because the SoL is mostly hollow.)

              Volumes: (according to a quick Google search)
              Human(H): 0.0711 m^3
              Blue Whale (BW): 84.35 m^3
              BW/H: 1186.35724332 times

              Statue of Liberty (SoL): 2500 m^3
              SoL/H: 35161 times
              SoL/Bw: 29.6 times

              Mt Everest (Mt.E): 5.12e11 m^3
              M6.E / SoL: 204800000 times

              Square/Cube law decissively in action


              • #22
                You're allowed to set scale however you want in your game. Those were just illustrative. If you want Mount Everest to be size 15, you're welcome to do that.


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Florin View Post
                  You're allowed to set scale however you want in your game. Those were just illustrative. If you want Mount Everest to be size 15, you're welcome to do that.
                  Wile true, "You can houserule it" is rather irrevelant in context of a review. Also, I would probably put it either 7 or 8 under the assumption that by 10 it arrives at planetary scale.


                  • #24
                    According to Aberrant, 10 is solar system scale. 9 is planetary. 8 is continents, and 7 is metroplexes like the BosWash metroplex which covers from Boston down to Washington, DC.


                    • #25
                      That sounds like the same granularity „problem” except the relative difference between 9-10 is bigger than 1-9.


                      • #26
                        The scale on range 1 to 6 is roughly 5 times (not on weight, but on one direction), so one person being 1,8m (6’) on scale 1, to be scale 2 would be about 9m (30’) tall, a group of 5 people is scale 2, a car running at speed about 100km/h (60+mph) is scale 2 too. Scale 3 is about 45m, 25 people group, 500km/h, etc, multiplying the previous by 5. If you follow this rule, a scale 5 is over 1km tal and 6 is almost as tall as Mount Everest.

                        After 6 it gets a bit crazy, as it is far too big to play with from human perception, but the 5 times rule a good standard. So scale 8 is about as tall as ISS orbit and 9 is as tall as 1/5 of the moon diameter.

                        the problem is Scale 10, it’s just out of scale, a nova that reach scale 10 on anything won the game for that scale, no matter who is competing. just ignore scale 10 and be happy...

                        House Rules - The Basics - House Rules for Trinity Continuum
                        Fists of Flux - Inspired and Powered Martial Arts for Talents
                        Tomes of Inspiration - Rituals and Dark Magic in Fists of Flux


                        • #27
                          Chapter three: Storypath System part 2: Action types and sequences

                          Due to the mechanic heavy nature of this chapter, this post may be somewhat dry.
                          Action categorized as Round-by-round and Complex.

                          Anatomy of the round:
                          Definitions, some inherited, some not. I am not sure what if the functional difference between „has the focus” and „on her turn” that requires the terms to be separate.

                          Round by round actions:
                          Mostly covered in the previous sections. The new here is the one stunt per action limit, and reflexive actions. The former answers the „why not just spend leftover successes on variable stunts” question. Reflexive actions seem mostly here to dodge mixed-action penalties if the action would be minor enough or some power allows it.

                          Complex Actions:
                          These are the Storypath’s version of Storyteller's extended actions. Instead of collecting a total number of successes, now we have several successive challenges called milestones, each with their own difficulty and complications, potentially using different dice pools. This means that now you can't just blow through the whole thing with your single rote 10d10 +5 action.
                          It is also used for teamwork, contests, and some social stuff, and everything that the Storiguide decides should be more than one roll.

                          The Three Areas Of Action:
                          So for starters we have rolling for initiative, to be explained in chapter 4. Notably, no dice-pool is listed there, so, for now, I will assume its „whatever you can justify” like all the other dice-pools.
                          Next, we have acting in the round. Reflexive actions and five-foot steps moving a single range band are free. Then there is are two paragraphs to say „In addition, the character may take one action during her turn. That action may be ordinary or mixed.” Also, the text vacillates between focus being gained and spent or passed around.

                          Range is measured in range bands, which I am personally not a fan of. Beyond that, the scale seems fine. Though it may be better elaborated in aberrant, just +1 range band for the higher scale seems little. What happens when there are several characters with different speed scale or high difference in scale.
                          The rest of this is fairly self-explanatory. Complicated terrain adds Complications, this time with actually given effect to what happens if you don't buy them down. Difficult terrain adds Difficulty.

                          Next time: Procedurals and intrigue.


                          • #28
                            Sorry for vanishing, but real life came up. Anyway:
                            Chapter three: Storypath System part 3:

                            It starts with information gathering. It works by collecting clues. There are two types of clues: core and alternative. Core clues are the rails for the main plot, and you get them without rolling. Alternate clues are the hooks for side-stories that you do roll for.
                            Gut feeling is that there should be some middle ground, but I can’t put my finger on it.
                            You can get more information about clues by rolling the appropriate dice-pool. You can spend the successes in a variety of ways, from getting more clues to giving enhancement to other actions.
                            Thinking back, under ordinary actions it said that you can only apply one stunt per roll. So I am assuming that you can only apply one of these per rolls. (unless it is an unrelated „spend success on advantage” mechanic).
                            Scratch that it says that you can combine them.

                            Next, there are several examples of actions for information gathering. Looking at Hacking, because it's close to home. Honestly, using cunning just doesn’t feel right. When not exploiting the universal weak point (more commonly known as users) its mostly consists of figuring out what software they are running and attacking that, often using prewritten specialized software. I suppose Hollywood hacking can seem like cunning, but personally, intelligence feels more appropriate. A lesser extent even resolve is applicable. (Trial and error).

                            There are two subsystems linked by a third.
                            The connecting one is Attitude. Its a 0-5 scale representing hoe strongly a character feels about another. It can be positive or negative, adding enhancements as applicable.
                            A subsystem of this is Atmosphere, that can modify the character’s Attitude based on circumstances, towards one of the extremes.

                            Bonds are exactly what it says on the tin, bonds between two characters. It works as a complex action with the number of milestones determined by a player. You tally up the successes, then you can spend them as enhancements on relevant action. Its essentially making an investment in another character, that you can later withdraw to spend elsewhere.

                            Influence is what you would expect from a Social system. Getting others to do/think/feel what you want them to. The ability to just up and ignore a successful roll seems prone to abuse, even with the consolidation. Especially since Storiguide characters explicitly don’t get consolidations, meaning they can be ignored without mechanical consequences. Perhaps toothless is a better world than abusable? On the other hand depending on build, 1 momentum = 1 one-shot K.O.
                            Also, there seems to be a built-in assumption that players will be using it against each other.

                            Next time: Super Science