Author Archives: BrianLiberge

About BrianLiberge

Brian Liberge is a father of one, living in Boston, MA. Introduced to AD&D at an early age, he’s continued to update with the editions, and regularly DM’s two concurrent 4E campaigns. He loves home-brewed ideas, is honest to a fault, and thought that the idea that converting 3.5 to 4e is impossible, is just plain silly. With a B.S. Degree in Theatre Arts, a job in Information Technology, and a love of strategy gaming, he tries to bring the best of each into his new creations for the D&D World. You can find my work in Kobold Quarterly 19, available now. You can track all his work on http://brianliberge.wordpress.com/

The Gamer Assembly to speak at PAXEast 2013

PAXEast is storming the Boston Convention and Exposition Center, March 22-24. We’ll be there and we’re running two panels for your listening and question asking enjoyment.

Worldbuilding 101 

Tentative: Friday, March 22nd at 3:00pm in our Tabletop theatre

Our panel of experienced designers, editors, artists, and trained nerds talk about their experiences working on both personal and company-owned settings including the Midgard, Experiment073, and 3 Generations After the End. Topics include finding where to start, working with other creators, reinterpreting existing work, and knowing when to stop creating.

Panelists include: Brian Liberge [Game Designer, Freelance], Jim White [Editor/Writer/Designer, Freelance], Kaitlynn Peavler [Artist, Freelance], Casey Peavler [Nerd], Art Vaccarino [Nerd]
Tabletop System Wars 
Tentative: Saturday, March 23rd at 4:30pm in our Tabletop theatre
You’re thinking about your next RPG. How will you decide which system is Fated to carry your next campaign idea into the Marvelous realm of Godlike gaming experiences? Will your Travellers be HEROs or ride Lady Blackbird to Apocalypse World? Will your Shadowrunners survive their Fiasco and become Role Masters, or will your Pathfinders scatter into a Diaspora among the Stars Without Number? Does your Dungeon need Dragons, Crawling Classics, or Worlds to explore? That’s where we come in. Our team of designers, editors, and nerds will brainstorm, suggest, and debate until you’ve got the system that fits for you. Bring your ideas, we’ll bring the nerd rage.
Panelists include: Brian Liberge [Game Designer, Freelance], Jim White [RPG Editor/Writer/Designer, Freelance], Casey Peavler [Nerd], Tresi Arvizo [Nerd], Bob Smith [Nerd], Art Vaccarino [Nerd]

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Filed under Conventions

Another Doctor for Marvel Heroic Roleplaying

So when recently reading an Excalibur Graphic Novel I came across a biography for Marvel’s version of the famed Wizard Merlin. Multiple times it mentioned his experience with “the time travelling Doctor”. This immediately got my interest and I found his file on the official Marvel wiki. In the GA Chat we began speculating about how he might be stated up for the Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Game, though in only a half serious manner.

As the conversation turned to other topics both Brent and I kept thinking about the concept of a Doctor Datafile and each created our own file. Both owe credit to our conversation, with others, in the chat room, which accounts for some similarities.

So without further ado, here is yet another Datafile for The Doctor. Click the image for a full printable version.

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Science Skill – Modern Assembly

Fields of Science by Image Editor on Flickr

Science (Intelligence)

The Science skill encompasses modern analysis and knowledge gained from it, including the chemical analysis of materials, experimentation to draw new conclusions about a particular object, creature or behavior and the use of computers for research and analysis.

Training in this skill represents either formal study or extensive experience at an University or with a Research facility. Those with training are more likely to know esoteric information or gain new knowledge through active experimentation.


Science Knowledge

Make a Science check to recall a relevant piece of information from modern studies, such as chemistry, computer science, or physics. You may also make a Science check to recognize a Science related clue.

Examples of Science knowledge checks include identifying a common substance in the field (Easy), identifying a potentially dangerous chemical (Medium), and predicting the course of a new mutation (Difficult).

Monster Knowledge

Make a Science check to identify a creature created or altered by Science.

Computer Hacking/Programming (Trained Only)

Creatures that have training in Science can use the skill to break into a computer, write their own programs, identify foreign and malicious elements in computer software and trace their origin. The following checks may often be part of a greater skill challenge.

Create Program
(Standard Action. Easy DC of the creature’s level)
Make a Science check to create a program intended for a particular task, including security software, games, or malware.
Success: You create your intended program. The result of your check becomes the DC needed for creatures to counter your program.
Failure: You cannot attempt to create the program again until after a short rest.
Special: You can make an attempt, after a short, rest to increase the DC of an already created program. Make the check as normal, if your result is the same or higher than the current DC, the new DC matches the higher result. If your result is lower than the current DC, then decrease the DC by 2.

Hack Computer (Standard Action. Variable DC, determined by the security of the computer)
Make a Science check to gain access to a computer, program or network you would not normally have access to.
Success: You gain access, and can gain any information the target may hold, or allow a created program access.
Failure: You cannot attempt to gain access again until after a short rest. If you fail by 5 or more your intrusion was detected.

Detect Hacking or Malware (Standard Action. Hard DC of the creature’s level)
Make a Science check to detect the presence of foreign or invasive elements in a computer. The skill is often used in this way when no intrusion is observed but they suspect it is present.
Success: You detect each source of hacking or malware on the computer, and recognize whether each program is running locally or from a network connection.
Failure: You detect nothing. You cannot try again until after a short rest.

Identify Hacking or Malware
(Minor Action. Moderate DC of the intrusion’s level)
Make a Science check to identify the source of the malware or hack and know it’s effects.
Success: You identify the program and/or programming language used to create each piece of malware or hack and you know the effects of the intrusion.
Failure:  You cannot attempt to identify the hack or malware again until after a short rest.

Counter Hacking or Malware (Standard Action. Hard DC of the intrusion’s level)
Make a Science check to counter malware or hacking, preventing further damage to your system.
Success: Choose one effect per success. Against malware, you may disable or remove the program. Against a hacker, you may trace the hacker’s location or cut the hacker off from the computer.
Failure: You take a cumulative -2 penalty against further counter attempts until after you take a short rest.

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Filed under Modern Assembly

Mechanics Skill – Modern Assembly

We’re using two new skills in Modern Assembly, to help fill in the gaps on opportunities that just didn’t exist in medeval times. You may notice that these skills really could be multiple skills. We chose to condense modern knowledge to 2 skills, to keep the total number of new skills down.

Mechanic by slagheap on Flickr

Mechanics (Intelligence)

The Mechanics skills encompasses knowledge of engineered constructs, as well as the ability created, repair and operate them. This includes vehicles, computers and other machines such as a power generator or crane.

Training in this skill represents either formal study or extensive experience at formal institution or as an occupation. Those with training are more likely to know esoteric information or be able to solve unknown issues through active repair.

Mechanics Knowledge

Make a Mechanics check to recall a relevant piece of information about mechanical construction, operation, and applications. You may also make a Mechanics check to recognize a Mechanics related clue.

Monster Knowledge

Make a Mechanics check to identify a creature created or altered by Mechanics.

Drive (Move Action. Variable DC)
Any creature can operate a simple land based vehicle, such as a truck, car or motorcycle without being trained or making checks. In a more stressful situation, such as driving during combat or while being chased.

Pilot (Trained Only. Move Action. Variable DC)
Creatures that are trained in Mechanics can operate boats, airplanes and other advanced devices.

Repair (Trained Only)
Creatures that are trained in Mechanics can aid machines which are failing.

Heal Construct (Variable)
You use a Mechanics check to treat a mechanical creature as if using heal against a living creature. (See Heal)

Quick Fix
(Minor Action. Easy DC)
Make a Mechanics check to quickly patch a machine.
Success: You are able to temporarily stop further damage to a machine. An object immediately stops its actions, or continues properly at its slowest speed.
Failure: You are unable to affect the target.

 

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The Gamer Assembly will be at PAX East!

PAX East is this weekend in Boston, the 6th to 8th! Many members of the Gamer Assembly will be there and we’d love to see you too! If you want to stalk any of us, we’ve put together a brief schedule below of things we’re pretty darn sure we’ll be at.

Pay special attention to Fix your Tabletop RPG with the RPG Doctor and the Gamer Assembly, on Friday Night at 7 PM. If you didn’t guess by the title, it’s our panel (Brent’s the RPG Doctor). We’ll be answering questions about trouble with your home campaign, how to make problem areas more awesome, and our experience with a vast array of RPGs. Heck, if you have a different RPG question, we’ll probably answer it. Our panelists include Freelancers, Designers, Editors and Artists.

There’s even be a give away including the first issue of Call to Assembly, The 4e Red Box, a set of chrome Dwarven Dice, a Gamer Assembly T-Shirt and more! We hope to see you there.

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Fated Theme – Modern Assembly

. . .to be fated by Khanh Hmoong

Some people are born great, some achieve greatness and some are just surrounded by the abyssal horrors! Fiction is filled examples of heroes who aren’t smarter, faster or stronger than everyone else, they’re just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Yet somehow these hapless regulars wind up on top! One way or another, they not only survive the fight but they manage to contribute significantly to the final victory, while fighting alongside super cops and powerful wizards.

These heroes rarely begin adventuring careers by choice. More often than not, adventure springs right up around them. They could be the only person who seems to notice the demons in their hometown. It could be that a group of established heroes are venturing into the local woods, and the fated is persuaded at knife point to come along as their guide.

No matter your reason for adventuring, you soon pick up other useful skills, and may even eventually gain a bit of courage and self confidence. Even when your battling against epic foes, there’s always that bit of luck or fate tat shines through.

Examples include Xander, Kagome, Katniss or Stephanie Plum.

Fated Starting Feature

You always seems to be have a little bit of extra skill just when it seems that failure is inevitable. Whether it’s fate or just a surge of willpower when all hope is bleak, the you get the job done when it’s the most critical.
Benefit: You gain the Burst of Hope power.

Burst of Hope Fated Utility 1
At the last moment you fumble with your tools as you try to disable the doomsday device. By some stroke of luck, they fall in just the right spot.
Encounter * Martial
No Action       Personal
Trigger: You make an attack roll, a saving throw, a skill check, or an ability check and dislike the result.
Effect: You add 1d4 + 1 to the triggering roll. At 11th level you add 1d4 + 2. At 21st level you add 1d4 + 4.

Fated Level 5 Feature
With all the crazy stuff happening in your life, you find yourself constantly running just out of reach of the next villainous threat.

Benefit: You gain a +1 power bonus to all defenses vs. opportunity attacks. This bonus increases to +3 vs. opportunity attacks made by aberrations or undead.

Fated Level 10 Feature
Sometimes when things seem there worst, that’s when the greatest opportunities arise. You spin a great failure into a moment of keen insight.

Benefit: Whenever you roll a natural 1, your action still fails as normal. Your next attack roll, a saving throw, a skill check, or an ability check gains a +2 power bonus.

Optional Powers

Level 2 Utility Power
Sometimes you just have to get across the room, in an impossible amount of time. You find something greater, deep inside, when the need is high.

Burst of Speed Fated Utility 2
With a great push you launch yourself desperately across the room.
Encounter
Minor Action Personal
Effect: You gain a +2 power bonus to speed until the end of your next turn.

Level 6 Utility Power
When your surrounded by soldiers in full battle gear and brutes with bulging muscles, it’s easy for enemies to forget just how tough you can be.

Tougher Than I Look Fated Hero Utility 6
When things get tough you rise to the task, shrugging off your enemies assault so that you can be the hero your destined to be.
Daily
Minor Action Personal
Effect: You gain resist 3 to all damage until the end of your next turn. At 21th level this increased to resist 6.

Level 10 Utility Power
It’s easy for others to dismiss your character in battle, but they have no idea how many times you’ve risen to the challenge. You know how to shrug off a debilitating effect and come back strong.

Sudden Revival Fated Hero Utility 10
Just when it looked like you were out of the fight for good, you stand and do what’s needed.
Daily
Free Action Personal
Trigger: You start your turn dazed, dominated or stunned (save ends).
Effect:  You make a save vs. that effect with a +2 power bonus.

*If this seems familiar it’s based on a theme written for A Night in Lonesome October. Modern characters were heavily considered for that project and it seemed folly not to include it in this project.

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Filed under D&D 4E, Modern Assembly