Read Me, For I Am The... Introduction to the game.   Posted by Chronicler.Group: 0
 GM, 1 post
 ...and Don't! Blink!
Mon 25 Aug 2008
at 19:22
Read Me, For I Am The... Introduction to the game
Welcome to "By a Shotgun and a Prayer", an All Flesh Must Be Eaten RPG.

First things first: Check out the Game Info (first link at the top right corner of this page) for... Well, you know. Info on the game.

Second, how to apply: PM me a *character concept* and a *writing sample*. You can combine them, if that's your style (that is, write a short story to introduce your character), or you can describe your character and send an unrelated writing sample.

After that, if you are not familiar with the rules, we'll start talking numbers, and I'll guide you through the character creation process.

Players with absolutely no knowledge of Unisystem may want to browse the intro pack here:

For those who like to know the details of how stuff works, a full rule book (different setting but same rules, with a couple of minor exceptions) can be downloaded for free here:

That may be especially in that it has a nice list of Qualities, Drawbacks, and Skills you may like your character to have.

OTOH, if you are familiar with the rules, and you want to send in a full character sheet, be my guest.

All characters are Survivors or Inspired; you are entitled to build a handful of extra characters out of the Norm template, if you think they'll make your main character's story more interesting (e.g., the character's younger brother/sister/fiancee/old grandma), but you'll be required to play them with reasonable effort, and they will probably die horribly anyway :P

Inspired must worship a deity with the following characteristics:

- Creator of the universe (and, in general, Creator, rather than Destroyer)
- Possesses absolute power (but does not interfere with Free Will)
- Does not share this power with other beings

For purposes of this latter point, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit of Christian theology are considered as a single being.

Other than that, it need not be any of the known versions of God.

If, for instance, you want an Inspired of the True Goddess Ishtar, Mother of the Universe, and your character's vision of her fits the above requirements, that is good enough (originally misspelled "god enough").

Finally, how to start playing: For your first IC thread, put your character(s) in a normal, everyday situation: I'll make the world goes to Hell for him (or her, or them).

All posts SHALL BE in past tense (or else); dialogues are "colored and between quotes"; thoughts are colored and in italics.

If possible, pick for your character a color that hasn't already been used by another PC.

A personal pet peeve of yours truly is spelling, meaning players are STRONGLY invited to pay attention to the differences between, say, there, their and they're.

Transgressors will be hung by their toes...

Also, never forget: values of beta will give rise to dom!

So watch out.

There is one exception: I never barred dyslexic players from entering one of my games. The issue is usually handled by careful use of spell-checkers; in the odd instance where the spellchecker actually makes things worse, I will usually intervene and fix the offending post.

Aside from medical conditions, however, you are expected to pay due attention to what you write: it's a matter of respect for the other players, the occasional readers, and in the end for yourself.

Back to playing rules: to simplify everybody's life, here's the list of special dispensations to players (that is, the list of things you can do in this game that you wouldn't normally be allowed to in a tabletop environment).

- Description in standard/owned environments
You are free to describe character's possessions (including rooms and lockers) as you see fit, in any of your posts where they appear (but please make them consistent); that also applies to standard rooms: if you are in a chem lab, for instance, you don't need to wait for me to assure you that there are indeed bunsen burners, beakers, and the like: just go ahead and describe whatever you need; as long as it's reasonable, I'd most likely allow it anyway

- Domain over relatives and NPC friends (to a fault)
You don't need to wait for me to describe the reactions of NPC's whom your character has a close relation with; that way you can create a more lively scene than waiting for a one-line post from me that would only say "hi, how are you?" anyway... that also applies to said NPCs' interactions with other players - as long as you don't abuse that privilege :)

- Joint posts
You can - in fact, should - work out joint posts with other players in private threads, when you are planning to have a scene that only involves PC's and/or player-controllable NPC's, so that the final post reads better (again, having one-liners scattered across the thread looks kinda ugly and it's also less enjoyable to read); all the efforts made in building a better story will be considered when distributing XP...

This message was last edited by the GM at 12:19, Wed 27 Aug 2008.

 GM, 6 posts
 ...and Don't! Blink!
Fri 29 Aug 2008
at 12:02
Re: Read Me, For I Am The... Introduction to the game
New Quality for PC's...

If you don't mind having a character who is most definitely not going to make it, here's the Quality for you:

0-points Supernatural Quality
Prerequisite: any 2-point or higher Mental Drawback
Your destiny has already been decided, and there is nothing you can do about it - or so the nightmares say, and you take those nightmares quite seriously, because, since the world has gone to hell, you've learned that there are more things in heaven and earth. Still, it's not all bad: apparently you will get something nice in return for your troubles - or so the nightmares say, and you take those nightmares quite seriously, because, since the world has gone to hell, you've learned that there are more things in heaven and earth. You haven't learned yet what your "reward" is going to be, but apparently you will, in time - or so the nightmare say, and you take those nightmares quite seriously, because, since the world has gone to hell, you've learned that there are more things in heaven and earth...

As I hope I have conveyed in the description of the Quality, characters who possess it are not exactly in possession of all their marbles anymore, so player discretion is advised...
 GM, 232 posts
 ...and Don't! Blink!
Sat 11 Jul 2009
at 07:39
Re: Read Me, For I Am The... Introduction to the game
Through the skilled handiwork of one of your fellow players, behold, a compiled list of new Qualities, Skills, and Miracles from various sourcebooks.

Not all of the new Qualities and Drawbacks are available at this time. If you wish to acquire a certain Quality, let me know.

Similarly, not all new Miracles are available at this time, but eventually they may become necessary to the group's survival.

From One of the Living

The basic skills a character needs to grow and harvest crops and raise animals. Required Success Levels may be based on types of crops being grown, poor soil, etc. Note that Veterinary Medicine should be considered separate from this skill.

The Camerawork skill allows a character to use all sorts of film and video cameras, including professional grade TV and movie cameras. The character knows how to move smoothly to avoid the “Shaky-Cam” (or knows how to get this effect but present a viewable image if that’s your thing), and how to position himself to get the best shot. The character can also troubleshoot basic camera problems and operate remote cameras. Smooth photography while moving rapidly or irregularly uses Dexterity and Camerawork, troubleshooting requires Intelligence and Camerawork, and positioning requires Perception and Camerawork. Still photography uses the Fine Art (Photography) skill.

While Intimidation uses the threat of violence to motivate someone, and Smooth Talk uses guile and deception to convince others, both skills apply to individuals. Use Persuade to influence groups of people (from one to thousands) using either emotional arguments or cold logic. When trying to persuade the town of survivors to convert the high school gym into a greenhouse when they want an armory, this is the skill to use.

Multiple success or failure levels may influence the degree of apathy or enthusiasm with which your plans are met by the target audience.

Repair (Type)
Eventually items and equipment the Cast Members own will start to break down into disrepair. Found objects that have lain unused for many months or years may need some work to get them running again.

The Repair skill allows a character to make simple repairs to a number of different items—television sets, refrigerators, ripped jeans; it is the skill used by repairmen. Typical subtypes for this skill could include Electronics, Textiles, Carpentry, Masonry, and so on. Electronics skill applies to all kinds of electronics, while Mechanic most often applies to large pieces of heavy machinery. The Repair skill may be appropriate for TV repairmen, the furnace guy, plumbers, and tailors. The player and ZM should discuss the desired effect of the skill before committing skill points to it.

Required Success Levels for this skill are based on how damaged the item is. Fixing a simple tear in a pair of jeans or hotwiring an average car might require only one Success Level. Effecting repairs on a cracked engine block could need multiple Success Levels. This might require the use of special equipment as well.

The ability to find useful materials may become paramount to the survival of your Cast Members after the fall of civilization. The Survival skill most often applies to finding edible nuts and berries or constructing a lean-to, while Scavenging deals with scrounging up D-cell batteries or a ‘67 cabernet. The character with the ability to find things in the most unlikely of places could become important to the group in the long run.

Scavenging skill allows a Cast Member to locate items of a general or specific nature—anyone can find bandages in a hospital or supermarket, but a scavenger could turn them up by looking in car glove boxes. The more specific the item being searched for, the more difficult it is to find. You could use Scavenging to search an abandoned city for "car batteries", but trying to find "car battery for '67 Volkswagen" would be much harder. If the Cast Member must find specific items (a type of food, or a specific mechanical part), the Zombie Master should bump up the required Success Levels. Finding a specific item is a Scavenging and Perception Task, modified by the area being searched. Intelligence and Scavenging could be used to figure out the best places to scavenge for a specific thing, decided upon by the ZM, or to identify objects that could do in a pinch.

Additionally, if the Cast Member has the Survival skill, and is Scavenging in a relevant area, they may add half their Survival skill to their Scavenging skill while in that area.

From The Book of Archetypes

Martial Art (Kendo)
This skill covers the use of the shinai, bokken, and katana. The benefit is the same as the Martial Arts Skill (+1 damage per level), but with kendo weapons. This skill counts as a Special Skill (double cost).

Science (Cryptography)
This is the study of making, breaking, and coding messages.

From One of the Living

Bag of Tricks: 3-point Physical Quality
This guy always seems to have the right tool for the job. Whenever the Cast members are out in the field or away from their home base, the ZM can assume this character has any simple mechanical device, tool, or necessary item with him. Back at his base of operations, the character may have access to someone who has just about anything the Cast could conceivably need. Zombie Master discretion is called for in the adjudication of this Quality.

Bilingual: 2-point Mental Quality
The Cast Member was raised in a bilingual household, and can choose two native languages at skill level five for each.

Black Thumb: 1-point Physical Drawback
The character and plants are like pickles and whipped cream—they just don’t mix. Anything the Cast Member tries to grow is a disaster, which can be problematic when he needs to keep his last tomato plant alive, or gets assigned to farming detail. When attempting to make any sort of roll for the growing or maintaining of crops or plants, the character does not gain the benefit of any Attribute. He must make the roll just using his skill levels.

Cloistered: 3- or 5-point Mental Quality
The character has lived a sheltered life, concentrating on a few favored subjects to the exclusion of more useful things. Protected from the harsh realities of life, he is the typical absent-minded professor who knows everything there is to know about 12th Century Hispano-Arabic Strophic Poetry, but can’t program a VCR. He can tear a computer down and rebuild it better than before, but can’t carry on a simple conversation. These people are called geeks and nerds, but they’re who everyone runs to when they need a battery made out of coconuts and chewing gum wrappers.

At the time of character creation the player may choose a number of skills equal to either his character’s Intelligence or Perception (whichever is higher). He may lower each of these skills by an amount up to the cost of this Quality. The character may go into negative values this way. Use these new points to purchase levels in any other skills (typically academic or technical skills). Normal skill-purchasing rules apply to these points, as in the All Flesh Must Be Eaten corebook.

Note that these negative levels count as “unskilled” and combine with the normal unskilled attempt penalties (see AFMBE, p. 92).

Green Thumb: 1-point Physical Quality
The Cast Member is exceptionally adept at tending plants and plant life, which is great when all the survivor community has is a packet of seeds. In any instance where the character must make a Task roll to influence the growth or health of plants or crops, the player may roll the Task twice, and choose which result to apply.

Hallucinations: 3-point Mental Quality or Drawback
The Cast Member imagines seeing or hearing things that are not really there. In times of stress, the character has a 2-in-10 chance of experiencing a hallucination. These hallucinations seem real to the character, but he may make a Difficult Willpower Test each Turn to snap back to reality. The Zombie Master should secretly make this roll; it’s quite possible the Cast Member does not even know he’s hallucinating.

This can either be a Drawback or a Quality, depending on the nature of the hallucinations. They are often a symptom of a psychiatric disorder, and usually impair the character. Examples include hearing voices telling the character to do something potentially fatal, or seeing an old school teacher who tormented the character (“See, Timmy? If you’d paid attention in math class, these zombies wouldn’t be after you.”). Detrimental hallucinations are a threepoint Drawback. If the hallucinations represent the character’s subconscious trying to help Cast Member, such as providing advice or leading them to safety, this is a three-point Quality.

Insomnia: 3-point Mental Drawback
For some reason the Cast Member cannot sleep. He either can’t fall asleep right away, he wakes up in the middle of the night, or he wakes up early. Each night (or whenever he tries to sleep), the character has a 2-in-10 chance of suffering one of these effects. He gets used to it, but still loses D6(3) Endurance Points each night it happens. If awakened by Recurring Nightmares, the Cast Member cannot go back to sleep and suffers from both Endurance losses.

Jack of All Trades: 3-point Mental Quality
Characters with this Quality have a little knowledge about almost everything. This could result from being worldly and well traveled, or having spent his life watching reruns of Jeopardy. The Cast Member can perform any Task for which he does not have the actual skill, as if he possessed the skill at rank zero. Unskilled attempt penalties do not affect skills used in this way (though at least one Success Level is needed to succeed). The "Rule of Ten" is inapplicable; the character simply doesn’t know enough about the subject to make brilliant leaps of logic to get those amazing results. However, the “Rule of One” does apply. At such times, the character thinks he knows what he’s talking about, but he got the information completely wrong.

Jury-Rigging: 3-point Mental Quality
Some people go past a junkyard and see memories of another time, or nothing but, well, junk. Others see opportunity. Characters with the Jury-Rigging Quality are the "mechanical optimists" of the world, and are good at cobbling together whatever is needed from objects at hand. When you need a flamethrower, this guy makes one out of two fire extinguishers and the parts from a vacuum. Whenever the Cast Member makes a Task roll while attempting to cannibalize or jury-rig an item, he can roll for the Task twice, and choose which total to accept. Unskilled Task penalties still apply (see AFMBE, p. 92). See Chapter Three: Making it Up As You Go for specifics on jury-rigging and the skills that apply.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: 1- to 4-point Mental Drawback
Characters with this Drawback display some sort of obsessive behavior. This could be anything from constant hand washing, to kleptomania, to the need to arrange all the chopped-up zombie parts into neat rows. At the time of purchase, select the nature of the character’s obsessive-compulsive behavior. The level of the disorder reflects the number of Success Levels the character must achieve on a Difficult Willpower Test to resist the obsession when it comes about.

Physical Disability (One Eye): 2-point Physical Drawback
Unlike the other Physical Disability Drawbacks, which affect the character’s limbs, or Impaired Senses, which affect senses as a whole, a character with this Drawback is missing one eye. This affects depth perception, and results in a –2 penalty to melee combat-related Tasks and skills requiring hand-to-eye coordination (acrobatics, painting, driving, and so on). During ranged combat, the penalty is increased to –3.

Phobia: 1- to 5-point Mental Drawback
This Drawback replaces the Delusion (Phobia) Drawback as an optional system for handling phobias. The Cast Member is mortally terrified of something. The Drawback level purchased represents the difficulty to overcome terror when in sight of the source of the phobia. The higher the points value, the more debilitating the fear. Whenever the character faces the object or situation of his fear, he must make a Fear Test (see AFMBE, p. 96) with a penalty equal to the Drawback value. If the situation is normally frightening, add the value of the Phobia to the regular Fear Test penalty.

Phobias include but are not limited to: animals, blood, confined spaces, crowds, darkness, failure, heights, insects, needles, night, noise, the number 13, open spaces, the opposite sex, planes, love, sharp objects, trees, undead, and water.

Strong Stomach: 2-point Physical Quality
The character has a cast iron stomach and can tolerate spoiled or slightly poisonous food. This can be useful when he scavenges a can of beans slightly past its “use by” date, or eats berries he’s not supposed to. It has no effect on poisons, such as a cobra’s bite or strychnine in the Kool-Aid (which would be Resistance (Poison))—the former because it is injected, the latter because the toxicity is too high. Whenever a character with this Quality eats food that is mildly toxic or slightly “off,” he can make a Simple Constitution Test to resist the effects, instead of the Difficult version other characters would be required to make.

Suicidal Tendencies: 5-point Mental Drawback
The character has mentally crossed a line and can’t hack it any more. He thinks about harming himself frequently. At stressful and difficult times, the Cast Member attempts to injure himself, perhaps fatally. When failing a Fear Test or skill Task, the character makes a Simple Willpower Test with a penalty equal to the amount he failed the previous attempt by. Success means the character does not attempt to hurt or kill himself. Failed “suicide rolls” result in an selfinflicted attack. Since this is something done to themselves, a +10 modifier is applied.

Slit the wrists: Dexterity + Hand Weapon (Knife) + 10
Gunshot to the head: Dexterity + Handgun + 10 (head shot damage multipliers apply)
Jumping in front of car: Roll damage (see AFMBE, p. 116)
Jumping off building: Roll damage (see AFMBE, p. 108)
Drowning: Dexterity + Swimming + 10
Hanging self: Strength x D6(3) damage plus asphyxiation
Poison self: Damage based on poison (see AFMBE, pp. 106-107)

Threat Detection: 3-point Supernatural or Physical Quality
Sometimes, a person can sense impending danger. Whether it’s some kind of sixth sense, extreme paranoia, or an exceptionally fine sense of self-preservation, it’s harder than heck to sneak up on characters with this Quality.

Whenever a situation arises in which the Cast Member is in imminent danger, the Zombie Master should make a secret Simple Perception Test for the character. If successful, the character thinks, “something doesn’t feel right about this.” Higher Success Levels may give more specific information (“I think something’s behind that dumpster over there . . .”)

Weak Stomach: 2-point Physical Drawback
The character has a delicate digestive system and can’t tolerate jalapeno peppers much less spoiled or mildly toxic food. This can be a problem when all he has to eat is a can of beans slightly past its “use by” date. Whenever a character with this Drawback eats food that might be tainted, or is outside his normal diet (such as eating bugs and leaves), he suffers a –3 penalty on a Difficult Constitution Test. Failure means his stomach rejects the “nourishment,” often violently. As with the Strong Stomach Quality, this
has no effect on poisons.

From The Book of Archetypes

Absent Minded: 1-point Mental Drawback
Some people are a bit forgetful, especially in their old age. They periodically forget everything from appointments to names to daily rituals. At the Zombie Master’s discretion, a character with this Drawback must pass a Simple Intelligence Test to remember the information he needs to complete a skilled Task (“Now do I have to cut the red wire or the blue wire?”). If he fails the Intelligence roll, he fails the skill check, as well. The character can attempt another Intelligence Test every two Turns. If he succeeds, he has recovered the information from the depths of his mind, and is free to try to make an unimpeded skill Task.

Flashbacks: 3-point Mental Drawback
In situations of great stress, or prompted by appropriate stimuli, the character has a 2-in-10 chance of experiencing flashbacks, reliving a past traumatic event in his mind for D10 Turns. While experiencing these flashbacks, the character is generally incapable of action, but may make a Simple Willpower Test each Turn to snap back to reality. Additionally, strong stimuli, such as violent shaking, pain, loud noises, a friend’s yelling, etc. may bring the character out of his flashback, at the Zombie Master’s discretion. Of course, such stimuli may be exactly what caused the flashback in the first place.

Gamer: Variable Physical Quality or Drawback
Characters may only have one of the three aspects of this Quality/Drawback. The Zombie Master may make the character switch to a worse version of the aspect when appropriate (e.g., Godlike Endurance to Razor’s Edge or Razor’s Edge to Burned Out)

Burned Out: This gamer is an old-timer. The caffeine and the lack of sleep have finally caught up to him. Anyone with this level must sleep a full eight hours a day or else have a cumulative penalty of D4(2) to his Endurance Points per successive day without a full night’s sleep. These penalties are negated after eight solid hours of uninterrupted sleep. This is a one point Drawback.

Razor’s Edge: This gamer is beginning to feel the effects of the addiction to his hobby. At this level, the gamer can stay up for extended amounts of time. He will and can crash hard if he pushes himself too much. The Zombie Master keeps track of the hours of sleep the character misses. Each block of three hours missed translates into one hour of sleep needed in order to feel rested. The character does not lose Endurance Points for the hours of sleep missed or for staying up longer than 24 hours unless he pushes himself. When the character finally goes to sleep, he must make a Willpower and Constitution Test with a penalty of -1 per hour missed to see if he can resist the siren song of sleep. If he is successful, he gets up at the original time, with a D6(3) penalty to his Endurance Points. If he fails, he sleeps the full time required unless awakened by an outside force. In addition, if he awakens before he has slept the full amount of time, he receives a -1 to all physical stats for his first waking hour. This is a one-point Quality.

Godlike Endurance: Either a relative newbie to the hobby or someone with an almost supernatural Constitution, this gamer can keep playing for days on end. This character does not lose Endurance Points for not sleeping or for staying up longer than 24 hours. Regular Endurance Point loss and penalties apply after being awake for 48 hours. This is a two-point Quality.

Narcolepsy: 2-point Mental Drawback
This medical condition decreases a person’s ability to resist the Sandman, even at inconvenient times. Every thirty minutes, a character with this Drawback must make a successful Simple Constitution Test (with modifiers as the Zombie Master desires) to stay awake when he is involved in a situation which does not require him to be particularly active or attentive, such as listening to a boring lecture, driving for a long period of time, or guard duty.

Physical Disability (Overweight): 1-point or 2-point Physical Drawback
This Drawback refers to the truly obese, not people with potbellies or who simply need to exercise a little more. As a one-point Drawback, the character weighs 50-pounds over his ideal weight and sees both his Endurance Points and Speed Attributes reduced by 25%. For two points, character weighs 100-pounds or more over his ideal weight and reduces both his Endurance Points and Speed Attributes by 50%.

Quick Learner: 3-point Mental Quality
Some people just have a knack for noticing how to do things. People with this Quality are the kind who beat their friend at poker the first time they play, even though the friend has played poker every Friday night for the last eight years. As a result, when the character starts learning a new regular skill he gains one level or specialty free, up to level five. For levels higher than five or for Special Skills, reduce the cost by one point for the next level.

From The Book of Archetypes 2

Curious: 2-point Mental Drawback
The Cast Member has an insatiable sense of curiosity and is drawn to investigate anything remotely interesting, mysterious, or unusual. The character must succeed at a Willpower Test in order to bypass interesting subjects. The test should be Simple or Difficult according to the Zombie Master’s discretion, depending on how “interesting” the object is. In the dangerous world of All Flesh Must Be Eaten, uncontrolled curiosity can be deadly.

Tireless: Variable Physical Quality
A Tireless character can handle a great deal less sleep than a normal person. The character is naturally resilient against sleep deprivation. Tireless gives the character a +1 per level to his Survival Test against falling unconscious (ONLY in relation to sleep deprivation), and adds 9 points per level to the character’s Endurance Pool.

From other Unisystem sources and House Rules

Military Rank: Variable Social Quality or Drawback</b>

The character belongs to the armed forces. High rank has privileges: soldiers or sailors obey the character’s orders. On the other hand, low-ranking soldiers are at a disadvantage. They get ordered around, and disobeying is not a good option. The value of Military Ranks ranges from –1 to +9, and costs 1 point per level (positive or negative). Keep in mind that high Rank also entails numerous duties that may restrict the character’s actions even more than very low Rank. The rank names in the table below are taken from the U.S. Army system; other services and other nations have different names for equivalent ranks.

Military Rank Table
-1 Private, Seaman
0 Corporal
1 Sergeant
2 Sergeant, First Class
3 Lieutenant
4 Captain
5 Major
6 Lieutenant Colonel
7 Colonel
8 Major General
9 General

The following house rules apply to Rank:

- The cost of the Quality applies to the character's social modifier in most situations. Occasionally, when confronted with people who fear or mistrust authority (due to personal belief or contingent circumstances) the full Rank value will be applied as a penalty.

- Each level of Rank grants one free military Specialty, related to the character's specific background.

Choosing a specific make and model for the Guns, Driving, or Piloting skill will grant the usual +2 bonus for all Tasks involving that gun or means of transportation, including those that use different Skills.

Rank applies to armed forces as well as any type of law enforcement, with the same rules.

From One of the Living

Bountiful Harvest
Oftentimes the blessing of a bountiful harvest can insure the survival of a community more than the woodshed stockpiled with ammunition and flamethrowers. The Inspired calls down blessings from the Deity to ensure an abundant harvest and fatted calves. This usually takes the form of a ritual to bless the crops and livestock, and ensure it receives the protection of the Lord. The Essence spent ensures the seeds sprout, the plants are protected from pests, and the crops ripen to maturity. This is a three-stage
Miracle, spread out over many weeks and months.

First, the Inspired character must bless the crops as they are planted, or the animals as they are born, by spending five Essence Points. Second, as the crops grow and the livestock matures, the character expends 10 Essence to protect them from disease and predators. Finally, before the animal is slaughtered or the crops are dug up, the character performs one final ritual, costing 15 Essence Points. If all the Essence is spent, the community has bountiful results—multiply the yield by two. For every whole multiple of the Essence spent at each stage, increase the multiplier by 0.5. So if 10/20/30 Essence were spent, the multiplier would be 2.5. If 15/30/45, the multiplier is x3, etc.

Find the Path
When all seems lost, characters with this gift may glean direction from their god, the cosmos, or other means. Omens, strange lights, or other symbols help the character find the way to safety or to his goal. This may be used to find direction to a physical location or perhaps to discover the purpose of a character’s lifepath.

To use this ability, the character expends at least 4 Essence Points, though he may add more. The ZM must decide how many points are required by factoring in how distant, difficult, or hidden the goal may be. Gleaning directions to a 7-11 somewhere in the vicinity would be fairly easy. Discovering how to motivate a group of survivors who have given up all hope would be much harder.

When all seems lost, when the night is blackest, great men must sometimes sacrifice themselves to bring about another dawn. This Miracle is a last-ditch attempt by an Inspired character to lend aid from beyond the grave.

To activate this Miracle, the Inspired spends all remaining Essence Points but one. The Miracle goes into effect the moment of the character’s death. If the character survives the current situation, the power remains active for a number of hours equal to his Willpower, then dissipates.

If the character dies while the power is active, a total number of companions is affected equal to the Inspired’s Willpower doubled, chosen by the Inspired’s player. These characters get to add a bonus equal to the (now-dead) Inspired’s Willpower to all rolls for a number of Turns equal to the Essence the Inspired spent in activating the ability.

Example: Zombies have surrounded an old farmhouse, imprisoning Meghan (Inspired with Willpower 4 and 20 Essence Points left) and her companions. Three are lost trying to escape and bring help. Meghan realizes the situation is hopeless unless she makes the ultimate sacrifice. She activates Martyr and releases 19 Essence (keeping one only to remain conscious). Meghan walks out among the zombies and is torn apart. Upon her death, eight of her companions gain +4 on all rolls for the next 19 Turns. It’s up to the survivors to see that Meghan’s sacrifice was a meaningful one.

Pride of Lions
With this Miracle, the Inspired draws on the power of his faith to perform fiery oratory and motivate people to greatness. Whether a stirring sermon delivered from the pulpit or a simple declaration firmly put, the Inspired can cheer the disheartened, instill new resolve in the weary, and lead the directionless to great purpose.

The Inspired character spends a minimum of five Essence Points while delivering an inspirational address or sermon to his companions. Those who hear him add the Inspired’s Willpower to every roll they make for a number of Turns equal to the number of additional Essence spent divided by the number of affected companions, and rounded up.

Example: The Preacher has a Willpower 5 and 35 Essence Points. He is leading a group of Survivors through the wilderness and their bus hits a piece of debris and bursts a tire. As they get out to fix it, they are beset by a gang of bloodthirsty zombies. The Preacher invokes Pride of Lions, spends the base five Essence to activate it, and adds another 20 points for duration. The two people acting as protection for the workers get to add +5 (the Preacher’s Willpower) to their attack rolls. The two mechanics add +5 to their rolls to fix the tire. The follower who stayed on the bus to calm the children enjoys a +5 bonus on her Singing Tasks. These bonuses last four Turns (20 Essence divided by five actors).

With this Miracle, the Inspired creates a sanctuary against the forces of darkness. By displaying a symbol important to his faith and praying to the Divine, the Inspired character imbues an area with the might of the Almighty. Some zombies may be loath to enter an area of sanctuary, while other zombies may learn the hard way in the form of blinding, white flames when they cross the threshold.

To create a zone of Sanctuary, the Inspired spends 20 Essence Points and performs a ritual. This affects an area with a 10-foot radius surrounding the Inspired. For every additional point spent, add a foot to the radius. Once the Miracle has been activated, the center of the circle remains static; it does not move with the Inspired.

For a number of hours equal to the Inspired’s Willpower, undead must make a Difficult Willpower Test or they cannot cross the barrier of holy might. Alternatively, at the Zombie Master’s discretion, crossing into the sanctuary inflicts damage equal to D8(4) times the Willpower of the Inspired; this should not be combined with the barrier effect.

Once a location has been “blessed” it is easier to maintain. During the last hour of the effect, the Inspired character may recharge the Sanctuary by spending two Essence Points per hour by which he wishes to extend the effect. Theoretically, this could go on forever as long as the Inspired is able to recharge his Essence in time to extend the effect.

See Beyond the Veil
Through this Miracle, the Inspired opens himself up to the Universe to detect the precise location of evil. The best way to escape from the undead is of course to know where they are. But since most of them are so quiet, it’s often hard to tell if there’s one behind the door, or if it’s just the cat (again). Inspired with this ability have an uncanny knack for sensing where the dead guys are going to jump out of next.

The Inspired spends as many Essence Points as he wishes. The Essence spent divided by the zombie’s Willpower equals the number of zombies revealed. The range of this ability is equal to the Inspired’s current Essence Pool in yards and it extends through walls, doors, and other barriers.

Walk Through the Valley
Yay, though I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I shall not fear . . . Often, discretion is the better part of valor, and it is better to try and pass by the undead rather than fight them. If the zombies can’t sense you, they can’t eat you. Through this Miracle, the Inspired calls upon his faith in the Lord to cloak himself or another in a protective aura, rendering them invisible to the senses of the supernatural.

The Miracle costs 10 Essence Points, and renders the target invisible to the undead (though they remain visible to mundane) senses, including sight, sound, and smell. Touch, and of course taste, remain unaffected, so bumping into a zombie is a sure way to get bit. Zombies with preternatural or supernatural perception abilities, like Life Sense or Scent Tracking, get to resist the Inspired’s Simple Willpower Test with a Simple Perception Test. This power lasts a number of Turns equal to the Inspired character’s Willpower x D4(2).

From The Book of Archetypes

Eye of the Storm
This Miracle extends a calming aura around the wielder equal to Willpower x three feet (one meter) in diameter. The effect confers a +2 to all fear-resisting Willpower Tests for anyone within its sphere of influence. In the event of a failed Fear Test, it also confers a -1 bonus on the Fear Table (see AFMBE, p. 96). The Miracle lasts for Willpower x five minutes, unless a separate Fear-inducing incident occurs. Spending an extra five points of Essence adds an additional five minutes to the duration, and +1 to the Fear Test.

From The Book of Archetypes 2

Spiritual Ally
People with this Miracle have a guide that is not of this Earth. This guide may come in the form of a restless spirit, guardian angel, or some other sort of supernatural being. This being is always with the person, and it can converse with the person at anytime, without anyone else hearing them.

The entity depends upon the Cast Member’s Essence to perform actions on this plane of existence. As a result, the character must expend five Essence every time he wants the spirit to manifest on this plane for 5 turns. While here, the spirit can act as a normal person (pick things up, fight, open doors, etc.). However, since they are not normal people they can still do things that spirits can do while not on this plane of existence. No matter what plane of existence the spirits are on, they can pass through surfaces up to 10 feet thick, are always invisible (except to the person they are attached to), never make noise or give off a scent unless they choose to do so. A spirit might be a ferocious supernatural being or some sort of heavenly entity with a keen mind. The spirit’s abilities, background, and disposition are entirely up to the ZM.

The spiritual ally is linked to its Earthly companion, and must have an Earthly vessel. The vessel is always some sort of inanimate object that has some significance to the spirit. For example, if a Cast Member has the ghost of a little girl for a spiritual ally, the vessel could be an old doll, or a piece of jewelry that the child had owned and cared for very much. When the spirit’s vessel is destroyed, the spirit is banished forever. In addition, the person’s link has been severed so violently the person suffers D10 damage and a permanent D4 Essence loss from the severe shock of losing the link.

Sample Spiritual Ally: “Mickey” Forest Spirit; Int 6; Wil 4; Essence 50; No attack; Metaphysics: Divine Sight; Skills: Instruction 2, Myth & Legend (English) 3, Survival (Forest) 4.

“Mickey” is actually a benevolent supernatural being who lived in a small forest in England until the late 1800s. The forest was turned into lumber at that time. Since then it has wandered the countryside helping lost, stranded, or hurt people. When the dead rose, it felt a great attraction to a man living in the United States. After finding the man, it has stuck by his side giving him advice and faith in his battle against the forces of evil.

Spirit Armor
Some people learn to harness spiritual energy into a protective form. Spirit Armor gives the person a natural Armor Value equal to one quarter their total Essence, but still allows the person to supplement this protection with normal armor. Since Spirit Armor is magical in nature, it protects against both mundane and metaphysical damage.

This Miracle costs 5 Essence to activate and 2 Essence per Turn to maintain. The armor begins to afford the Cast Member protection in the same Turn as the initial Essence is expended.

Through meditation, force of will, or some other method, this Miracle allows Inspired to become invisible. While invisible, anyone trying to see the character makes sight-based Perception Tests at -6. While invisible, Inspired characters get a +2 bonus to their melee combat and Dodge Tasks (you cannot hit or defend against what you cannot see).

The Divine Sight Miracle or Infrared Goggles will show invisible Cast Members. The Inspired still make noise, can be touched or smelled as per usual.

This Miracle costs 5 Essence per 5 minutes of invisibility.

This message was last edited by the GM at 07:02, Tue 03 May 2011.