Saturday, July 25, 2015

200 Character Backgrounds

For use with any Medieval Fantasy or Swords and Sorcery Roleplaying Game.

This single page supplement contains a numbered list of 200 possible backgrounds, allowing it to be used randomly or simply as a quick source of inspiration about a character's past. Stuck trying to figure out what your heroic warrior used to do before he picked up a sword? Need a quick job description for an NPC? From dangerous smugglers and branded criminals to simple farmers and craftsmen, you're sure to find something in this list to spark your imagination.

200 Character Backgrounds is available now as a pay-what-you-want pdf download.

You can get it here.

EMP Missiles for White Star

EMP Missiles

EMP Missiles are physical projectiles that create a very powerful electromagnetic pulse upon contact with the target. This does no actual damage, but the EMP causes all of the target starship's systems to completely shut down for 1d6 rounds. The target starship cannot attack, use any ship modifications, or pilot the ship in any way other than continue moving at the current speed without changing course. While disabled by the EMP, the target starship's shields are offline, temporarily reduced to zero, but will return to their previous strength once the duration of the EMP has ended. This modification may be purchased once per each weapon on a starship,

Range: 8

Cost: ???

Plasma Missiles for White Star

Plasma Missiles for White Star

These physical projectiles explode in a ball of ionized gas. If the target's shields are at zero, a plasma missile does 4d6 points of damage the first round, and 1d6 damage per round that completely bypasses the target's shields for the next four rounds, even if the target manages to repair their shields. Against a target with a shield strength of 1 or more, a Plasma Missile does 1d6 points of damage per round for four rounds that can be mitigated by shields in the same manner as norm damage. This modification may be purchased once per each weapon on a starship.
  • Range: 8
  • Cost: ???

Friday, July 17, 2015

Plasma Cannons for White Star

I've been working on a supplement for White Star that focuses on starship weapons and modifications.  My current working draft contains forty different items in various stages of completion, and I thought it might be fun to share some of them with the rest of the world as I work on them (especially those items that I could use some feedback on).

Presenting the first in my "White Star Ship Modifications" series of posts:

Plasma Cannons

Plasma cannons fire bursts of ionized gas. Upon a successful hit, the target takes 2d6 points of damage. If the initial damage is not completely negated by the target's shields, the plasma will continue to damage the target, bypassing the target's shields completely and doing an additional 1d6 damage per round directly to the target's hit points for the next 2 rounds.

    • Range: 12 8
    • Cost: ???
It's a pretty simple writeup, which is what I am aiming for. Feedback is greatly appreciated. In particular:

  • Is the damage - particularly the part that bypasses shields - too much? The final supplement will contain a few different starship modifications that will help to heal starship HP during battle, if that makes any difference.
  • The range is the same as standard laser cannons. Does that seem like a good range? It was suggested that I drop the range a bit, to reflect the fact that the wepoan fires bursts of gas as opposed to laser.
  • How much should these cost?
Thanks in advcance for any tips and advice.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Domesticated Mutant Animals in the Wasteland

A set of guidelines for handling domesticated mutant animals in Mutant Future, including two new mutations and four new mutant animals.

Animals in Combat

Domesticated animals, unless specifically trained for fighting, will not generally assist in combat encounters. Even wild versions of these animals, with the exception of waste dogs, will not normally attack unless threatened or cornered. Training an animal to fight effectively and follow commands is a long and labor intensive task, and many breeds and species will never be suited to such work.

Panicked Animals

In stressful situations domesticated animals may be required to make morale checks. This may often occur in combat, or as a result of loud noises or other startling events. Animals failing a morale check will typically attempt to flee the area and may wander a great distance away, but more tame and loyal beasts may react more favorably to stress and confusion. It is up to the GM to decide when to make morale checks for domesticated animals, and what the exact results will be. Cautious characters will remember to keep their animals securely tethered and would be well advised to keep them away from combat situations.


The various animals and beasts of burden that the players come across may vary widely from the species listed here. The listed statistics for each of these domesticated animals are based upon their original and unaltered form. It is ultimately up to the GM to decide what sorts of animals are commonly domesticated in the campaign, and various mutations can occur which present strange twists on the conventional breeds of these animals.
When assigning mutations to domesticated animals it is important to keep in mind that these animals are not the same thing as a Mutant Animal character, and even with mutations they will not be intelligent in the capacity that a Mutant Animal character would be. The GM is encouraged to assign mutations to domesticated animals carefully or else they may become too dangerous for their keepers.
Domesticated animals with visible or otherwise noticeable mutations may sell for a higher or lower price, depending on the circumstances, and unfit animals are often passed off as prime stock by unscrupulous traders in the wastelands. Some Pure Humans settlements may abstain from keeping mutated animals entirely, regardless of the nature of their mutations.
The table below lists some of the more common mutations which may exist within different species, breeds, and individual specimens of domesticated animals. The GM may roll randomly, choose from the list presented, or substitute any other mutations he feels are appropriate.

Domesticated Animal Mutations Table

Roll 1d20
  • 1-4 : Aberrant Form
  • 5 : Accumulated Resistance
  • 6 : Albinism
  • 7-9 : Bizarre Appearance
  • 10 : Chameleon Epidermis
  • 11 : Digestive Fortitude (New Mutation)
  • 12 : Dual Headed
  • 13 : Epidermal Photosynthesis
  • 14 : Frailty
  • 15 : Hemophilia
  • 16 : Increased Balance
  • 17 : Iridescent (New Mutation)
  • 18 : Natural Armor
  • 19 : Reduced Immune System
  • 20 : Sensory Deficiency

New Mutations 

Digestive Fortitude: The mutant is immune to the effects of most food borne illness, being able to derive nutritional value from spoiled foods. Common water contaminants such as bacteria or natural waste products are generally safe for the mutant to drink, and he receives a +4 to any saving throws versus ingested poisons.
Iridescent: The mutant can cause his skin to glow, giving off light in a radius up to 30'. The amount of light produced is controllable by the mutant, and there is no limit to the duration or number of uses as long as the mutant is conscious and capable of normal thought. The skin of an iridescent mutant will always give off a faint glow.

New Mutant Animals


  • No. Enc.: 0 (3d10)
  • Alignment: Neutral
  • Movement: 120' (40')
  • Armor Class: 8
  • Hit Dice: 1+1
  • Attacks: 1 bite or 1 kick
  • Damage: 1d2 or 1d2
  • Save: L0
  • Morale: 7
  • Hoard Class: None

Donkers are small domesticated pack animals capable of limited flight. A donker can carry up to 175 lbs. at normal speed, and up to 350 lbs. at half its movement rate. When a morale check is failed, the donker flees danger, or it falls from a dangerous height, the animal is able to leap using its near-atrophied wings. The leathery wings have a relatively small wingspan and end in tiny hooves. Although they are able to negotiate very rocky and hilly terrain, they are notably stubborn and occasionally hard to deal with.
Mutations: Complete wing development.


  • No. Enc.: 1d6 (3d10)
  • Alignment: Neutral
  • Movement: 90’ (30’)
  • Armor Class: 5
  • Hit Dice: 3
  • Attacks: 1 (bite)
  • Damage: 1d8
  • Save: L2
  • Morale: 7
  • Hoard Class: None

Krawlers are large, herbivorous reptiles who are occasionally used as mounts and beasts of burden. They have large, muscular bodies with four stubby legs, and their skin comes in a variety of patterns and earth tones. Although easy to train, Krawlers have incredibly strong jaws and can inflict a serious bite if agitated or provoked. They are usually kept securely muzzled when possible. In the wild, they travel across plains and deserts in slow moving herds, with males competing for dominance. Rogue males and small family groups without a herd may establish lairs and nests in caves, ruins, and other such places. A krawler may carry up to 500 lbs., and up to 1000 lbs. at half its movement rate.
Mutations: None.


  • No. Enc.: 2d10
  • Alignment: Neutral
  • Movement: 120’ (40’)
  • Swim: 60’ (20’)
  • Armor Class: 7
  • Hit Dice: 1
  • Attacks: 1 (bite)
  • Damage: 1d4
  • Save: L1
  • Morale: 5
  • Hoard Class: None

These mutated rodents are a larger, slightly more intelligent, and far more docile strain of giant rat, typically 5'-6' long, not counting its tail. They make sure footed pack animals, and are able to climb sheer surfaces and squeeze their way into small openings. They are sometimes kept for their meat and their milk, which tend to have abnormally high amounts of protein. A pawkarat can carry up to 100 lbs. at normal speed, and up to 200 lbs. at half its movement rate.
 Mutations: Digestive fortitude.

Waste Dog

  • No. Enc.: 2d6 (3d6)
  • Alignment: Neutral
  • Movement: 150’ (50’)
  • Armor Class: 8
  • Hit Dice: 2
  • Attacks: 1 (bite)
  • Damage: 1d + hold
  • Save: L2
  • Morale: 7
  • Hoard Class: None
Waste dogs are the descendants of various breeds of domestic canines. Their bloodlines have been mixed over time, and there are no pure strains left of the original domestic breeds. The average waste dog is usually about the size of a coyote, and their coloration and distinguishing features may vary from specimen to specimen. Feral packs of waste dogs can cause trouble for lone or injured travelers, but in many places they are still domesticated by humans and mutants. If properly trained, they can make effective lookouts and loyal companions. A waste dog can carry loads up to 20 lbs. at normal speed, and loads up to 40 lbs. at half its movement rate.
After biting an opponent, a waste dog can hold on, doing 1d4 damage automatically every round. It can keep holding on until it dies, unless the victim sacrifices an attack in an attempt to break free. This requires a successful saving throw versus Death, adjusted by the victim's Strength modifier.
Mutations: Accumulated resistance (disease), accumulated resistance (poison), night vision.

Staff of the Mind Breaker

Here's a twisted little magical artifact I found buried in my old hard drive. It should be compatible with just about any OSR style rules, although you may have to do a bit of tweaking depending on your system of choice.

This ancient staff is rumored to have once belonged to an insane magic-user - a demigod in his own right, if the legends are true - bent on dominating all mankind. He toiled for decades to create a staff that would further his goals, and once his task was complete his mind finally snapped. Nobody knows for certain what became of him after that, but his staff still exists today. It may be that it has changed hands countless times throughout the centuries, or perhaps it has just been hidden away, buried in some dark tomb awaiting its first owner.

The staff itself is fashioned from an unnaturally textured and indestructible wood-like material. The shaft is a dark blue color, banded with thick sections of copper and silver. Gems adorn the metal, but they are small and dully colored. The headpiece of the staff  is composed of an unbreakable silver-like sphere which sounds hollow when struck. When used as a melee weapon, the staff functions as a +3 weapon. While holding this staff the wielder is immune to any form of illusion or mental control, and their AC is improved by 3 points.

The staff's spellcasting powers are activated by striking the sphere, either with a fist or object or upon a hard surface, which produces a distinct and unnatural ringing sound.  By doing this and expending a 1 charge, the user of this staff may create one of several different spell effects. The spells available are Antipathy/Sympathy, Charm Monster, Charm Person, Feeblemind, Geas, Hallucinatory Terrain, Irresistible Dance, Mirror Image, Phantasmal Force,  or Project Image. These spells will be cast at the level of the user. The staff has 15 charges and will recuperate 2d4 charges per day.

This staff is a sentient object, functioning in much the same manner as a sentient sword, with an INT of 18. It has no set alignment and may be used by anyone. It seeks only to control and influence the minds of as many sentient beings as possible, and if deprived of this it will attempt to assert its will on the user, calling for influence checks. If the will of the staff prevails it will not just randomly use its powers. It will seek the most advantageous path to controlling as many people as possible, often through scheming and long term plans. 

There is no known method of destroying this artifact The safest recourse is to bury it deep beneath the surface of the earth, seal it within a man-made structure, or to send it to the bottom of a large body of water. Otherwise, it will eventually seek out and call to its next owner through supernatural means such as visions, dreams, and omens.