Rebel Scum rules...   Posted by The GM.Group: 0
The GM
 GM, 17 posts
Wed 22 Jan 2020
at 14:27
Rebel Scum rules...
Each Player Chooses a Calling:
❖ Barbarian - Powerful & Intimidating Brawlers
❖ Conniver - Manipulative & Controlling Masterminds
❖ Crafter - Clever & Curious Tinkerers
❖ Fighter - Cunning & Impressive Warriors
❖ Shadow - Sneaky & Elusive Rogues
❖ Shaman - Intimidating & Righteous Spiritualists
❖ Guerilla - Ruthless & Tenacious Trackers
❖ Mages - Clever & Dedicated Magicians
❖ Clerics - Fervent & Mystical Believers

You play as a rebel in a fantasy world, working with other rebels to build a base of operations and achieve your master plan.

The game alternates between time spent within the base and outside of it.

The master plan develops over time, only needing to know the next step in the plan. Following through on these steps generates xp for your group.

You choose a calling which gives you a list of abilities to choose from as you gain in power. Each character has a set of nine actions rated from 0 to 4 dots (but you start with a max of 2 in a given action) which are used when you want your character to do something.

Before you make a roll, the GM will determine the position and effect of the roll.

Position is a measure of how bad the consequences will be if you fail, while effect is a measure of how large of an impact you will have if you succeed. When you want to do something, you declare your intent and what action you’d like to use. The GM gives you the position and effect and you then decide whether to roll or not.

You roll a number of d6s equal to the action rating you chose, then you take the
highest result from the roll.

If that highest result is a 1, 2, or 3, it’s a failure, and you suffer a consequence determined by how bad your position was.

A 4 or 5 is a mixed result, meaning you manage to accomplish your goal but suffer a consequence as well.

If your highest result is a 6, it’s a success and you accomplish it without any consequences.

Two 6s give you a critical and you get some awesome extra benefit along with your success.

Consequences come in many forms, such as wounds, the situation worsening, a weapon breaking, or enemy reinforcements arriving.

Taking a second heavy wound before recovering kills your character.

When you suffer a consequence, you can resist it with your actions, which negates or reduces its impact, but you might take stress. Stress is a resource every character has that allows them to keep their nature in check. Characters can also spend it to empower abilities that they have, like casting powerful spells or performing a feat of strength.

Your nature is the character flaw resting within your rebellious heart. It
beckons you away from the tasks at hand. Following through when it beckons grants you a Heart, a bankable die that you can spend later when rolling actions.

However, when you take too much stress, you Lose It, giving in to your Stress completely. You fill your bank of Hearts, but can’t resist consequences.

When you spend all of your Hearts, you regain control. Until your next recovery, you’re at risk of pushing your character over the edge, having them permanently give in to their nature and become unplayable.

The game progresses in two phases, the lurking phase and the roaming phase.

During the lurking phase, each character has two downtime activities that they can
spend to make rooms and tunnels in their base, build traps and locks, craft inventions and potions, and so on.

The Allies you control also have a downtime activity to use.

You clear all of your stress and heal all of your wounds during recovery at the beginning of this Lurking phase. You can engage in revelry by spending gold, which rewards you with Hearts. At the end of the lurking phase, the GM rolls to see if any calamity happened within your base, such as helpers revolting or tunnels collapsing.

During the roaming phase, you head out of your dungeon, interacting with factions,
recruiting helpers, and launching raids.

You can jump directly into a raid by selecting a target, choosing a plan, and providing a detail. The GM then rolls engagement and you skip directly to the first steps of the plan unfolding. Raids are where the bulk of the action in the game happens as you hit targets for the gold and resources your base needs to grow. After the raid winds down, the GM rolls to see if your actions caused any blowback, such as an ambush waiting for you or targets along a prosperous trade route drying up.

Calamity and blowback sometimes result in invasions, leading to a group of powerful soldiers or mercenaries showing up at your dungeon. They might also show up as the result of events in the story. The PCs, when danger comes, wait with gritted teeth and bated breath to see if their helpers, creatures (because if you live in a fantasy world, why not make a trap room with a giant spider in it to waylay the mercenaries sent to kill you?), tricks, locks, and traps attempt to fend them off. If the fascists manage to make their way to level two, the PCs face off against them. After cleaning up the bodies, you jump right back into the phase cycle and continue raiding and robbing from the rich...

This message was last edited by the GM at 17:06, Sun 26 Jan.

The GM
 GM, 18 posts
Thu 23 Jan 2020
at 14:46
Rebel Scum rules...
Player Best Practices:

Root for your base, not your character. Your resistance movement will outlive any character you’re playing - it is the center of the story here. Don’t worry about losing a character, just promote a helper to a fully-fledged rebel, or bring in a new rebel to join the cause.

Don’t run from danger, embrace it. The excitement in the game happens when the biggest stakes are on the line.

When in doubt, follow your nature. If you don’t know how your rebel would act,
just lean heavily on your nature (plus a hatred of fascism) and see where it takes you.

Describe what’s going on. When you roll, take the reins and tell everyone what’s
happening. Even if a consequence is coming your way, narrate up to the point where
the GM cuts in to tell you how everything went horribly wrong. The more you describe
your actions, the better the story blends together for everyone.

Tell a cool story. It’s not just on the GM to make the story awesome-- it’s on all of you. Every person at the table is there to enjoy the same game and you all have the same level of responsibility. It’s easy to shuffle this over to the GM, but they’ll have enough on their plate. Come to the session prepared, know the rules, step up and drive action, and help suggest courses of action for fellow players when they’re stuck.
The GM
 GM, 19 posts
Thu 23 Jan 2020
at 14:55
Rebel Scum rules...
For the most part, players are the ones who roll the dice. Below is an overview of every type of roll made in this game, which will all be explained further as you work your way through the rules.

Players will be making these rolls:
❖ Action rolls are made when characters do something challenging. You
choose an action and roll it to find out what happens. The roll has position
and effect, which determine how risky it is and the impact it might have.

❖ Resistance rolls are made to resist consequences. You choose an action and
roll it to see how much stress you take to resist it.

❖ Downtime rolls are made to dig out rooms and tunnels, build locks and traps, craft potions and contraptions, cast spells using elaborate rituals, and so on during the lurking phase. You roll an action to see how much progress you make.

❖ Revelry rolls are made at the beginning of the lurking phase to engage in revelry and gain Hearts. You spend gold and roll dice equal to how much gold you spend.

❖ Loot rolls are made after a raid to see how much gold you came away with. You also make them after a successful base defense or any time you have a chance to gain some extra loot.

The GM will be making these rolls:
❖ Engagement rolls are made to determine how a raid starts off or what position the PCs are in when some action starts but it’s unclear how ready they were for it.

❖ Calamity rolls are made to determine if anything bad happened within your base while lurking.

❖ Blowback rolls are made to determine how the world responded to your actions out in the world while roaming.

❖ Fortune rolls are made to figure out how something goes or questions about the world when the GM isn’t quite sure or doesn’t want to decide on their own.

Actions are different methods and approaches that you use to get things done. They
represent a character’s natural ability or training. They show what you’re good at and
what you’re terrible at. They define how your character goes about solving problems.
They often overlap with each other in the tasks they can apply to, as there’s usually
more than one to do something. They don’t cover every possible thing you could be
doing - they’re just the most common ways that rebels deal with their problems.
Tied to each action and listed with it on your character sheet is a descriptive adverb
which expands on how it is typically used. When you can’t quite find an action that
fits what you want to do, you can always fall back on that adverb to figure out your

Actions and Attributes
Actions are broken up into three categories called attributes. The attributes are a
good indication of how the actions are typically used. They are also sometimes hit
with a consequence called shock, weakening that set of actions temporarily.
❖ Brains covers the actions Scan, Tinker, and Trick.
❖ Muscles covers the actions Finesse, Sneak, and Smash.
❖ Guts covers the actions Banter, Command, and Invoke.

Actions in Detail
When you Scan, you perceptively read situations or search for information.
You might roll Scan to scope out good targets on a road, read fear in your enemies’
hearts, or pour over an archaic tome looking for details for a ritual.

When you Tinker, you cleverly fiddle with a device, mechanism, or potion.
You might roll Tinker to rig a cart axle to fail, place a trap along a forest path, or
jimmy a lock in your way.

When you Trick, you slyly deceive, confuse, or manipulate someone.
You might roll Trick to make someone believe you’re harmless, to distract some guards while your buddies get into the armory, or lose some hounds running you down.

When you Finesse, you precisely take aim, maneuver, or use tools.
You might roll Finesse to stick an arrow between someone’s ribs, jump from tree limb
to limb, or trip someone walking by you.

When you Sneak, you sneakily move unnoticed or launch a surprise attack.
You might roll Sneak to slip out of the shadows and knock out a guard, sneak up and
pocket some unattended gold pouches, or go unnoticed in a crowd.

When you Smash, you powerfully assault something or someone.
You might roll Smash to whack a mercenary's skull with a warhammer, bend some prison cell bars, or toss an exploding alchemical against a wall.

When you Command, you forcefully compel someone to obey.
You might roll Command to scare townsfolk into running away, keep your helpers in line, or demand some travelers surrender their bags.

When you Banter, you affably get people to help you out because they like you.
You might roll Banter to get a group of workers to join your base as helpers, convince some satyrs that you’re not looking for trouble, or calm a giant spider down.

When you Invoke, you magically interact with dark, mystical forces.
You might roll Invoke to cast an enormous fireball at the doors of the jail, to dispel a ward spell on a door, or to make a hippogriff back down with a display of magic.

Choosing Which Action to Roll
Think about what your character is doing and work backwards from that to choose an action. Describe it, then find the action that matches your description most appropriately. If you can’t quite find one that fits, reference the associated adverb to see if you can get close. Matching description with actions is key, as it informs the shape success will take or the consequences that will stem from failure. Are you trying to powerfully Smash a stink bomb against a wall, or are you trying to precisely Finesse it into the perfect spot?

Overlap among actions when trying to accomplish a task is normal - there are many ways to go about most things and some approaches may be more effective than others. It’s up to the player to tell the GM how they want to approach doing something, and it’s up to the GM to determine how effective or dangerous that might be.

Be the Rebel, Then Choose an Action That Fits
We all have a tendency to want to roll our highest-rated actions, but the fun in the game is failing and dealing with that failure. Just because you're a rebel doesn't automatically mean you have time (or maybe not even the brains) to think things through, after all. So if your crafter wants to tell a big, bad knight that he’ll rip his tongue out even though you have 0 dots in Command, say screw it and roll the dice anyway! If you really want it to work, go hard and toss a Heart at it!

Action Rolls
When a PC attempts to do something challenging in a situation with risk and tension,
you make an action roll to see how it turns out. If there’s no risk or tension, there’s no
reason to make the roll - the PC can just narrate what happens.

Action Rolls
You roll the chosen action, with the GM providing the position and effect for the roll.
Critical: You do it without consequences and get something extra.
Success: You do it without any consequences.
Mixed : You do it, but it’s costly - you suffer a consequence.
Failure: You don’t do it and suffer a consequence.

First, describe what you want to accomplish and the action you’d like to use to do so.
The GM then considers many factors (detailed later) and gives you a position and effect for the roll. The player then decides if they’d like to go ahead with the roll, hold off, or consider another approach.

The action roll itself resolves several things happening within the fiction. As the GM
doesn’t roll for NPC actions, their actions are covered by PC action rolls. Each roll sets
up a small scene with many things happening at once. The scope of what you can accomplish is determined by your goal, the chosen actions, and the difficulty of anything in your way. One Smash roll might cover a quick break through a cornfield running away from some mercenaries, but throw some dogs in there and it’s going to be much harder to get away.

Players Should Decide Their Actions
It’s best if the player chooses the action roll themselves. The GM choosing the actions is an easy habit to fall into, but they should try to make sure the players maintain control over their character’s actions. If someone is struggling, maybe the GM can prompt them with, “How do you go about it?”

After the roll, if the player doesn’t pick up the narration, the GM can cue them in by asking, “Okay, tell us what that looks like.” This is the most powerful line in a GM’s arsenal. Give the players a ton of narrative control and they’ll respond with awesome scenes from which NPC reactions and consequences flow seamlessly.

Position and Effect
Once the player announces what they would like to do and the action they’d like to
use to do it, the GM needs to run through a quick simulation in their brain. This is the
GM’s primary job - making the world feel real. To do this, every roll has a position and
effect assigned by the GM with many factors playing into it. This is how the world
pushes back against PC actions. They want to do stuff, but there’s consequences for
their actions and things might not quite work out as well as they would hope.

Action rolls are the only rolls that have position and effect.

Position is a measure of how severe the consequences will be if you fail a roll.

There are three positions that you’ll find yourself in.
❖ Dominant position means you’re in control of the situation. You risk
suffering a light consequence.
You have the perfect opportunity. You’re at a strong advantage. You’re in a
situation where you can recover from failure.

❖ Risky position means there’s definitely a chance of danger involved. You
risk suffering a medium consequence.
You don’t have time to think things through. You’re taking a chance. You’re
in a situation where failure is going to hurt.

❖ Dangerous position means it’s incredibly perilous. You risk suffering a
heavy consequence.
Your back is against the wall. You’re putting it all on the line. You’re in a
situation where failure is going to be a disaster.

Effect is the measure of how much impact you will have if you succeed on a roll.
There are three levels of effect:

❖ Strong effect means you can expect things to go very well.
You’re set up for success. You have the perfect plan. Your target is weak.
There’s someone helping you out.

❖ Normal effect means you can expect average results if you do well.
You have the tools you need. You’re on equal footing. It’s all up to you.

❖ Weak effect means you expect less than the results you’d prefer.
You’ve chosen the wrong tool for the job. You’re at a clear disadvantage.
There’s something hindering you.

The default position for action rolls is risky and the default effect is normal. If you’re trying something, you can generally expect to have chosen the right tool for the job
with a decent chance of it working, but in a rebel's life, there’s almost always
some chance things will go horribly wrong.

If something has no cost for failure and you have ample chances at accomplishing it,
you don’t need to roll for it-- you can just do it. If it’s important to know how well you
did, make a fortune roll to see how it goes. Dominant position is used for a momentary advantage within a high pressure situation or in situations where failure will only lead to lost opportunity, such as downtime activities.

Action rolls made for downtime activities default to dominant position.
The GM
 GM, 20 posts
Fri 24 Jan 2020
at 21:28
Rebel Scum rules...
Setting Position and Effect
To set the position and effect, the GM takes a look at all of the circumstances
surrounding a roll. The easiest way to frame this in your mind is trying to figure out
whether a PC is at an advantage or a disadvantage. If not, then just go with the
default above. But if they have something working for or against them, it’s probably
going to modify position and effect.

There are a lot of circumstances that affect position and effect, however they’re not
all weighed against each other equally. Some might be considered a dominant
circumstance, meaning it heavily outweighs others. It’s the GM’s job to weigh all of
these against each other, then decide the appropriate level of position and effect.
Here’s a list of things that might be considered as a circumstance:

❖ The action being used, whether it’s an effective or dangerous way to go
about the task or not.
Smashing a bottle against the side of a moving carriage is going to be easier than trying to Finesse it through a window.

❖ The scale of both sides, whether one side has substantially larger size or
greater numbers.
A lone rebel will struggle against a few guards, but can compete on equal footing if he brought a few friends along.

❖ The quality of the equipment being used, with higher-tier factions generally using higher quality items than lower tiers.
Fighting townsfolk in a barroom brawl is one thing, but fighting a well-equipped squad of the baron’s soldiers is quite another.

❖ The skill of the opponent, with an extreme gap in skill placing a character
into a better or worse position. This can usually be judged by action ratings
- rolling 0d against a trained opponent is likely to fail, but also may give
reduced position.
A rebel with a handaxe and no experience using it is going to struggle against a seasoned guard.

❖ Defenses and resistances, with armor and shields being obvious, but also
other things like keen ears, an acute mind, or being fearless factoring in.
An anti-magic field is going to severely dampen or negate the effect of magic.

❖ The strength of the magic in use, as more powerful magical effects have
an advantage over weaker ones.
Dispelling a simple illusion is much easier than dispelling an illusion hiding a hidden entrance that has stood for hundreds of years.

❖ Environmental factors which could affect one side or the other. Sneaking through a well-lit room full of people isn’t going to go as well as an empty, darkened hallway.

❖ More specific advantages like having the exact perfect tool for the job or knowing a secret that comes into play. Having wrong information would put you at a disadvantage, though.

Your informant told you he heard that the bandit queen loves to be flattered - a fact that couldn’t be further from the truth.

In rare cases, circumstances can push position and effect to extreme levels. When failure means there’s no chance of survival, the position becomes deadly. This means that the consequence for the roll is death or a fate worse than death, such as diving into lava or lying to a divine being. Deadly consequences cannot be resisted, though a mixed success on such a roll gives a heavy consequence instead.

On the other hand, effect can be reduced to zero. This means there’s absolutely no way you can have an effect, such as trying to Smash a dragon by throwing a rock at it or trying to Banter a guard whose son you just killed. (--No. Don't gimmee that. It's not gonna work.)

Engagement Rolls
Any time the initial position of a scene is unclear, the GM rolls engagement to set the
position the PCs start in. This could be the beginning of a raid, a fight starting, hiding
from a griffon circling overhead, or starting a conversation with a bandit queen.
Engagement bridges the gap between the zoomed out overall narration and a zoomed
in action scene. It helps you establish just what exactly was going on when the action
starts up if it’s not clear. This works better than the GM arbitrarily making the call.
Engagement tells you how well prepared you are for what’s to come - do you begin in
a strong position with a lot of opportunities or is your back against the wall from the

Engagement Rolls
Roll 1d, 2d, or 3d depending on the likelihood of starting in a strong position.

Critical: You couldn’t be more ready. Every PC can take either +position or +effect on their first action.

Success: Things begin smoothly, going according to plan. The first person to act can take either +position or +effect.

Mixed : You face some minor complications as things get started, beginning in a risky position, possibly with minor consequences inflicted.

Failure: You didn’t see this coming! Things go awry from the outset. You may have not even made it to your target. You begin in a dangerous position, probably with consequences already being inflicted.

The amount of dice is determined by a rough estimate of how well the PCs are prepared for what’s to come. If they have some factors on their side that might help put them in a better position, the likelihood of things beginning well increases. If things are working against them, it decreases. You can set the dice for this as follows:

What are the chances things start in the PCs favor?
1d   Unlikely
2d   Toss-up
3d   Likely

In some cases, a player’s action can be used to set the amount of dice to roll. If they
are about to get ambushed, it might make more sense to roll a PC’s Scan.

Engagement Examples

❖ Something goes awry while you’re making an alchemical and the dungeon laboratory is engulfed in flames. Do you notice early and manage to duck out of the lab or do you start the scene already on fire?

❖ You’re walking down a forest path and a heavily armored man steps into the road, drawing his sword. Oh shit, mercenaries! Run! But is there a way out, or are there more mercs already behind you?

❖ You decide to raid a river boat. A plan is laid out (Smash & Grab) and you have a detail (We jump on the boat from the trees). Do you land on the boat no problem or were the boat’s guards watching the trees?

❖ You’re in your base working on projects when a giant worm burrows into your laboratory. Do you hear the walls starting to crack, or were you asleep?

Beyond setting the initial scene, the purpose of engagement is to cut to the exciting parts and zoom in on the action. You skip lengthy discussions of plans and preparation, things that often burn through a lot of time at the table. When you roll engagement, time is no longer fluid - you zoom in and every action counts and moves to push the story forward.

Once you have accomplished your task or the tension dies down, you zoom back out and time is fluid again.

When the world moves against you, you suffer a consequence determined by the GM-- an archer hits you with an arrow, a horse kicks you off a cliff, or a bandit chief narrows his eyes and signals that they’re pulling out of your alliance. This happens when powerful enemies or tough circumstances inflict consequences or as the outcome of a roll. Consequences represent the movement of NPCs and the situation in the game. This most commonly comes in the form of a failure or mixed action roll. Consequences can hit hard, but PCs have the ability to resist them as well.

When it’s unclear, the GM determines the severity of a consequence, which also determines how much stress it make take should you resist it. This works as follows:

❖ Light consequences are annoying. They’re mostly ignorable.
The guard knicks your shoulder with an arrow. The captain of the guard ducks into his tent and you miss your opportunity to take a shot. The loot you were carrying gets knocked out of your hands. You smack your head against a tree branch, stunning you.

❖ Medium consequences are frustrating. You’ll notice them.
You stumble back, dropping your bow in the river. The dogs catch your scent and are at your heels. Your greedy helpers run off to find some loot. You connect with your axe, but the mercenary’s armor blocks most of the damage.

❖ Heavy consequences are devastating. They demand your attention.
The knight plunges his lance deep into your chest. Your fireball misses, hitting your allies. You are completely surrounded by guards with swords drawn.

The Consequences flow from the fiction, so determining whether what’s happening is
annoying, frustrating, or devastating and apply the matching severity works quite
well. Let the mechanics match the fiction. When in doubt, you can also roll fortune to
see how things go.

While a consequence can really be anything, they’re mostly something the PCs don’t want to happen and tend to fall into some basic categories:

❖ Reduced effect: On a mixed, sometimes the impact of your success is reduced. You take -effect.

Your weapon doesn’t penetrate their armor. You only make it halfway up the cliff. The bandit king isn’t quite convinced to lend you his aid yet.

❖ Complication: Things get a bit hairy and the situation becomes more complicated. The consequence doesn’t always need to be directly connected to what’s happening, but it complicates things for sure.

Your weapon breaks. A thunderstorm starts. You hear a dog growling.

❖ Lose gold/item: You lose some gold or an item - perhaps you spend it, use it in trade, drop it, or it breaks.

The dogs wrestle your bow out of your hands. The hulking mercenary snaps your staff in half. Your coin pouch slips off your belt while you’re swimming.

❖ Lose opportunity: You miss your chance at accomplishing your goal.

The giant worm burrows back underground before you can lasso it. The prince slips into the carriage before you can take a shot. The lock breaks and is jammed.

❖ Lose position : Your position becomes worse - you’re in far greater danger
than you were before.

You slip and fall, hanging from a tree branch. Several guards arrive with swords drawn. Your shield goes flying out of your hands.

❖ Shock: One or more of your attributes is hit with shock and you take -1d on your next roll with one of its actions. The GM chooses the attribute that makes the most sense, though giving the PC the choice also works.

The potion makes you incredibly lightheaded (brains). A horse kicks you in the chest, knocking you back a-ways (muscles).

❖ Wound: You, an ally near you, or a few different characters take a wound. You take a wound equal to the severity.

You get a dagger stuck in your side. A horse kicks you in the head. A griffon drops you from up in the air.

❖ Backfire: When you fail to properly wield powerful magic, it may backfire on you, making yourself the target of the spell you were trying to cast or bring down some freaky arcane effects on you or your allies.
Your eyes turn red. Your staff turns to slime. The fireball explodes with you in the center.

❖ Lose morale: Your helpers lose morale due to taking wounds, being overwhelmed with pressure, or losing loyalty in your leadership. A light consequence deals 1 morale damage, a medium deals 2, and a heavy deals 3.

If they take too much morale damage, they might break or get crushed.
Farmers pincushion your raiders with pitchforks. Your scouts encounter a mercenary and run instead of fighting. You can’t convince the bandit chief to follow you, and many of your helpers decide to join him instead of sticking with you any longer.

❖ Helper Nature: Your minions are compelled to follow through with their nature, perhaps disobeying orders or just operating to satisfy their own needs.

The greedy cutthroat bandit allies grab what they can before you can. Your disloyal allies let the ambush plans slip. The impatient scouts pepper the first horse they see with arrows.

❖ Death: In some extreme situations, the only consequence that makes sense is death, bypassing the wound system. This is different from dying from wounds. This should be made explicitly clear that death is on the line before making a roll by declaring the position deadly.

You fall off a cliff. A dragon eats you. Your head is chopped off by the executioner.

With action rolls, setting position and effect often makes it quite clear what will
happen should the player roll a mixed or failure. However, consequences don’t need
to stem directly from the action on-screen-- they also represent forces moving against
players off-screen as the PCs waste time trying to accomplish something.

When you have dominant position, the consequences stemming from that roll are almost always lost opportunity, lost position, or reduced effect.

A consequence might be a mix of different consequences as well. If you take a
medium consequence, that could be a bit of shock and a light wound instead of a
medium wound. Each of these is considered a light consequence and must be resisted
separately. As a rule of thumb, a heavy consequence is equal to two medium
consequences and a medium consequence is equal to two light consequences.
The GM
 GM, 21 posts
Sat 25 Jan 2020
at 16:56
Rebel Scum rules...
Every character has one light wound box, one medium wound box, and one heavy
wound box. Each box represents different amounts of damage to your character.
❖ Light wounds are minor cuts and bruises. You might get a slash across your
forearm or a punch in your ribs.
❖ Medium wounds are serious, but non-life-threatening. They leave you
bleeding, deeply bruised, or a minor fracture. You might get your nose
broken by a shield to the face or an arrow stuck in a non-vital area.
❖ Heavy wounds are debilitating and put you close to death. You might get a
sword run through your gut or a horse kicks you in the head.

When you take a wound, you mark off a wound box equal to the severity of the consequence. If you have no wound boxes at that level remaining, you mark a box a level higher.

When you take a heavy wound, you are injured, which means you take shock to all three of your attributes.

Death from Wounds
If you take another heavy wound while injured, you die. However, you perform your death knell, an immediate final act before you kick the bucket. You ignore any shock you have on this roll and if you play into your nature, any ally who sees your death can take a Heart.

Nature & Stress
Nature is your character flaw(s). It’s indicative of what trouble you love getting up to, something that prevents you from functioning well, or stems from your character's personality or events in their lives. Each rebel's nature has two faces - when you make a
character, choose two from the list below (or make up your own with the GM).

addicted - bigmouth - craven - curious - deranged - fickle - greedy - gullible - haunted - impatient - jealous - obsessed - paranoid - proud - rude - reckless - stubborn - vindictive

Your nature will lead you astray. It’ll push you to act unwisely and ruin the best-laid plans. It’ll put you and your allies into danger - but satisfying your nature can also empower you, fueling your heart.

A rebel's nature constantly beckons them into heinous, cowardly, and selfish acts. When acting on your nature threatens to derail your current goals, you earn a Heart, a bankable die that you can spend later.

You can bank a max of 3 of these.

You can spend a Heart and take +1d to any roll. You can only spend one Heart on any given roll.

While players can weave their nature into their roleplaying, they only earn Hearts when their nature puts their current goals at risk.
❖ The GM can suggest a course of action that plays into a character’s nature,
especially in response to a player declaring an action.
“Sure, You could go help your ally, but you’re vindictive, right? Maybe spend time here twisting the knife on this guy you just downed instead?”
❖ Other players can suggest a course of action as well.
“Aren’t you reckless? Why not just try jumping over the chasm?”
❖ You can play into your nature yourself.
“I’m way too impatient for this. Can I have a Heart here if I push past the guard and enter the bandit chief’s hut?”

The GM makes the final call on whether something is deserving of a Heart. It’s important to remember that the suggestions are just that - you don’t have to follow through on them. It’s always the player’s choice. While it’s not required, getting a Heart usually requires an action roll to put things at risk or a sacrifice of some sort, like sending allies to their deaths or giving up some loot you’re carrying. The key is that you earn a Heart when you step away from what you’re supposed to be doing and instead do the things that fill your flawed heart with glee.

What They Did to My Friend
Darrin, a tracker, is trying to Sneak up to a mercenary camp. He notices a sleeping guard next to a tree and decides to move past him towards the camp. The GM glances at Darrin's nature, sees “haunted,” and says, “Darrin, you glance at the sleeping guard and notice the dagger at his side. Instantly, you flashback to your buddy Gary getting that dagger buried into his back. Your hair almost stands on end. You sure you want to let this guy keep sleeping?”

“Yeah, that guy’s going to get that dagger buried into his chest. I’m going to Sneak over there and take care of him,” Darrin says, grabbing dice and marking down his Heart.

Rebels have a resource called stress that they use to keep their nature at bay and stay focused. They can take stress to resist consequences or power abilities. Each character can take two light stress, two medium stress, and two heavy stress. Each box represents different amounts of assault on your ability to keep your nature in check.

When you spend stress on abilities or spells, you mark one box of the lowest level of stress you have open. When you roll a mixed or failure to resist a consequence, you spend a stress box equal to the consequence.

When you go to mark a level of stress but all the boxes at that level are full, you instead mark a box a level higher.

Stress allows you to suppress your nature, the urges lurking in your heart, and focus on your goals. Taking too much stress, though, pushes them over the edge and they Lose It,
succumbing to their nature. They become wild and dangerous... for anyone to be around, be they foe or ally.

Losing It
When you mark off your last heavy stress, you immediately Lose It, becoming a slave to your nature, which has the following effects:
❖ However many Hearts you did or didn't have already, you now have three.
Any action you take must play towards your nature, and you do not get
new Hearts for doing so.
❖ You can’t spend stress, though you can spend a Heart in its place to activate abilities. You take +1d if you make an action roll with the ability.
❖ You cannot resist, though you can still use a defense.
❖ Anything that would normally clear stress instead gives you a Heart.

Once you've spent your final Heart, down to zero, your mind clears, and you can focus on the
task at hand once again. You can spend stress and resist consequences as normal, and are no longer beholden to your nature.

Burnt Out
When you take a heavy stress but have no more to spend, you Burn Out. Your nature takes over permanently, and you lose your character. You must immediately take one final action playing towards your nature, and then exit the scene. The character is gone - time to make a new one.

When a rebel Burns Out, it means they’re too emotionally used up to have around anymore, and the player describes how they make a hasty exit, usually using their final action to do so. The character might run away, betray their comrades, steal something important, or the other PCs might even be forced to kill them.
However it goes down, that character is gone from the game, and that player has to make a new rebel.

--You have Wounds, and Stress.
--You get rid of all Wounds and all Stress at the start of the Lurking phase.
--BUT... If you get too many Wounds before the Lurking phase, you die.
--AND... If you get too much Stress before the Lurking phase, you Lose It.
--When you Lose It, you must start trying to do stuff, and spending all the Hearts you can, before you take more Stress.
--If you take more stress while you've still Lost It, you've lost your ability to work and play even with your own allies, and you leave the game. Time to make a new rebel PC.

Got it??
The GM
 GM, 22 posts
Sat 25 Jan 2020
at 18:53
Rebel Scum rules...
Resistance Rolls & Defenses
Consequences are what happens when the world moves against the players in response to their actions - but players can step in and choose to resist them. Any time a PC is hit with a consequence, they can resist it. When you resist a consequence that the GM makes clear is about to happen, it might be reduced or even completely avoided depending on how the roll goes. When you take stress when resisting, the amount is equal to the consequence - a light consequence costs a light stress box, and so on.

Resistance Rolls
Roll an action that you use to resist the consequence.

Critical: Avoid the consequence and clear one stress box.

Success: Avoid the consequence.

Mixed : Take stress equal to the consequence to avoid it.

Failure: Take stress equal to the consequence to reduce it one step in severity.

When you resist, describe how you go about stopping it and choose the action that best matches the description. Resistances always work to some extent - the roll just determines how well you resist and how much stress you take to do so. On a failure, the GM determines in what way the consequence is reduced. You manage to stem some of the damage, but not all of it.

You cannot resist a consequence with an action that triggered the consequence. So when you make an action roll, you must choose a different action to resist with.

The chosen action must make sense within the fiction - if the GM judges that the action would have a weak or less effect under the circumstances, you can’t use it to roll to resist with.

Resisting does not do away with the outcome of the action roll - the consequence still
happens. Resisting it is your reaction to it happening, to avoid or lessen its impact. If
you knock over a vase while sneaking through a hallway, you still knocked it over - but
resisting with Finesse allows you to try to react in time to grab it before it falls.

Examples of Resistance Rolls with Consequences Avoided
❖ A man jumps off his horse and runs for the forest. You roll Finesse to resist and cut him off before he gets there.
❖ A cavalier levels his lance at you and charges. You roll Smash to resist and the lance rolls off your shield instead of piercing your chest.
❖ Your allies lie to you, swearing they don’t know where the gold went. You roll Scan to resist and pick up on their lies.
❖ Your staff gets knocked out of your hands. You roll Invoke to use magical mastery to bring it back to you.

Examples of Resistance Rolls with Consequences Reduced
❖ Another PC makes too much noise sneaking through a field and a farmer notices you. You use Trick to resist and make some animal noises to make them think it’s just an animal.
❖ You fall off the edge of a building. You roll Smash to grab the edge, leaving you dangling from the edge.
❖ The master swordsman knocks your cutlass out of your hands. You roll Finesse to hold onto it, but your counterattack takes -effect as you fumble around with the hilt.

Resisting is How PCs Control the Story
It’s worth repeating - PCs can resist any consequence that comes their way! If you don’t like something bad that's clearly about to happen, just try to resist it. This means you can even resist the consequences about to affect other players. GMs, make sure they know this, and players, make sure you don’t forget it!

Along the same lines, PCs have to call out resists quickly. After the first session or two and the players have gotten used to the system, the GM shouldn’t give them a breather or remind them it’s possible-- just move on and keep the story flowing. It’s the PC’s job to interject to resist something.

Defenses allow you to completely resist a specific type of consequence. When you use
one, you mark it off on your sheet and can’t use it again until it refreshes during the
next recovery. When you use a defense, it acts as if you had rolled a success on a
resistance roll. You spend no stress and the consequence is completely avoided.
Describe what happens and how the defense applies to the situation. If there’s any
question about whether it can apply or not, the GM makes the final call.

Every PC has one defense derived from their trappings, the equipment they always carry. Other defenses can be gained through calling abilities, magic items, potions, or alchemicals.
The GM
 GM, 23 posts
Sat 25 Jan 2020
at 19:39
Rebel Scum rules...
Fortune Rolls
When the GM needs to make a judgement call about the world and either doesn’t want to decide or isn’t really sure what the answer is, they can make a fortune roll to decide. Fortune rolls fill in the gaps when there isn’t a specific rule or some information within the story is missing.

Fortune Rolls
You roll a number of dice based on the likelihood of something good happening in the situation. The results determine how well things go.

Critical: Not only do you get the desired result, but you get something else good to go along with it!

Success: A great result.

Mixed : Not bad, but not great. There’s a tinge of disappointment.

Failure: Things go about as poorly as they could.

If a PC is involved, the GM might choose to base the roll off of one of their actions, how much gold they spend, or some other factor. For example, if they want to know if they spotted anyone with horses on the road yesterday, maybe roll their Scan to see how well they remember.

It needs to be made very clear who the roll is being made for. Good results affect the
target positively. So if two sides are competing, make sure to choose which one you’re
rolling for - or you could even make competing fortune rolls, then compare the
results and judge what happened! Generally speaking, if PCs are involved, then a high
result should be beneficial for them.

Gathering Information
When you need to know some information or something about the world isn’t clear, you can gather information to learn more. As the GM is generally responsible for telling the players what their characters know and other truths about the setting, there’s no way they can tell them everything.

When a player wants to know something, they can ask the GM questions - but whether they get the chance to ask those questions may be determined by an action roll. Gathering information is about having a source of information, being in a position to access that source, and applying an action to extract the information. Not all of these steps may be necessary, though.

The player answers the following questions:
❖ What do you want to know? Ask the GM a question.

Where can I find an iron shipment? What’s been happening in this area
lately? Who is the lord of that town and does he have any hidden secrets?

❖ What is your source of information? Tell the GM where you will get the information.

I’m going to camp along the road and watch passing caravans. (or) I’m going to go talk to my friend, the retired ranger living by the lake. (or) I’m going to ask the prisoner we snagged in our last raid.

❖ What method do you use to get the information? Tell the GM how you will go about getting the information.

I’ll spend most of the day Sneaking there. (or) I’ll bring along a few bottles of beer and Banter with her.

The GM answers the following questions:
❖ Does the PC have immediate access to the source or do they need to maneuver into position?

❖ Does the source contain the information the player is seeking? If you’re unsure, make a fortune roll to see.

If the information you want to know is common knowledge or there’s no risk or challenge to obtaining it, there’s no need for a roll. The GM just tells you what your character already knows or can learn easily.

If it’s up in the air, you make an action roll to see how well you can get the information. The GM might make a fortune roll as well to determine how much information there is available. The amount of detail gained depends on the result and effect of the roll and how much information the source knew. A success on an action roll with normal effect against a source that contains the information gives good information.

❖ Great Information : The information is very complete and follow-up questions may expand into related areas or reveal secret information.

❖ Good Information : You get the answer to your question and can ask several follow-up questions to clarify details.

❖ Sketchy Information : You get the answer to your question, but the details are scant. The information is true, but may be misleading.

❖ No Information : Either the source didn’t contain the information or you were unsuccessful at extracting it.

Sometimes, you don’t have immediate access to the information. You may need to Smash some bandit heads before you get to Command their chief to tell you what they know. In this case, you must make action rolls to even get into a position to make the gather information roll.

Each attempt takes time and if you’re making an action roll, failure brings along consequences. Sometimes retrying is possible, but often it’s not - the chance is fleeting or the consequences make it impossible to continue trying to gather information. Remember that if there’s no risk or challenge, the GM should just give the information to the player and move on.

Gather Information Examples
❖ You Scan through some old tomes in your library. They’re archaic and difficult to decipher, requiring an action roll. You might ask:
What is the source of the archmage’s power? Is he related to the baron? Why is the baron trying to protect him?

❖ You Command a prisoner to talk.

When will the baron’s troops arrive? Do they know the location of our base? When will the convoy be at its most vulnerable?

❖ You look over the maps gained from your last raid. The GM makes a fortune roll to see how much information they contain.

When are the patrols active on the roads? How many are there in the patrols? Why are they so concentrated north of the forest?

❖ You Banter with a few workers, then head to the village’s leader and Trick them into spilling the beans.

Why did we see your men talking to that half-orc? What do you have to gain? What do the Baron's men want in this area?

❖ You Scan all of those present at the negotiating table.

Who seems the most uneasy? Who is the biggest threat if a fight breaks out? Why won’t the bandit chief sit down?

❖ You Sneak around a large house on a private estate.

What’s the easiest way inside? How many are living here? Which room of that big mansion seems like it might be the rich man's bedroom?

When you have to maneuver to get into position, an action roll may be required - but you might also be able to pay some cost. Maybe you spend some gold to gain access or bring along a nice present.

One thing to keep in mind is that rebels have to be careful about asking a lot of questions-- could be suspicious. To get the answer to exceptional questions, you may need an exceptionally safe and trustworthy source of information.

Rolling Less is Better
If possible, you should try to make these a single roll. You don’t want to bog these little scenes down with mechanics unless you have to - and multiple rolls might bring on multiple consequences.

For example, you could Sneak into the scout patrol’s camp and Scan for their maps - though you probably could have also rolled all of that into a single Sneak roll. However, if you have to Sneak into the camp and Banter with a prisoner they have there, that would definitely be two separate rolls.

This message was last edited by the GM at 16:35, Sun 26 Jan.

The GM
 GM, 24 posts
Sun 26 Jan 2020
at 16:42
Rebel Scum rules...
Gold & Buying Stuff

Gold within the base's coffers is tracked separately and far more abstractly than PC gold. But for PCs, gold is a resource they can use to directly influence the story.

Every PC should keep track of gold on their character sheet.

Throughout your misadventures, you’re going to have ample opportunity to pick up some loot. When you do, you make a loot roll to see what you find.

Loot Rolls
Roll a number of dice determined by the source of the loot.

Critical: You gain 4 gold and a powerful item.

Success: You gain 3 gold and a useful item.

Mixed : You gain 2 gold.

Failure: You gain 1 gold.

The number of dice rolled is variable, depending on the source:

❖ A successful raid gives you a loot roll of 1d and you take +1d for each extra piece of loot you went out of your way to secure during the raid.

❖ A successful base defense gives you a loot roll equal to the highest
attacker's tier.

❖ When in doubt, you roll the tier of the faction you got the loot from.

A useful item is something you’d be happy to find and can put to good use. It might be a tier 1 potion, alchemical, contraption, or magic item. It could also be mundane equipment with an edge, a map with valuable information on it, or a rare musical instrument. The GM decides exactly what you find.

A powerful item is a tier 2 or 3 potion, alchemical, contraption, or magic item. This is
something quite rare and lucky to get your hands on.

Buying & Cost
When you buy something, you agree to pay its cost, a consequence you’re inflicted with. You offer up something in return for the goods or services - gold, a favor, a debt, an item, a service, status, information. Cost can be almost anything the other side wants and is set by both the player and GM, looking for something the NPC would accept and the player feels comfortable with giving up.

It’s easiest to think about cost in terms of gold. When you want to buy something, the GM determines the cost.

❖ Cheap: Less than 1 gold. Mundane items. Cantrip level potions or alchemicals. A simple job that isn’t dangerous.

❖ Light: 1 Gold. Some interesting information. A useful item, potion, or alchemical. A difficult job or one that has some danger.

❖ Medium: 2-3 Gold. Some very useful information. A powerful or complex item. A complex job or one that has substantial danger.

❖ Heavy: 4 or more gold. Secret, forbidden information. Owing a huge favor. A powerful magic item.

Reducing Cost
You might want to negotiate the cost - you can do so with action rolls, though the consequences are likely to be the cost climbing or losing the chance to purchase it. In this way, the PCs may get swindled and forced into buying something too pricey as well. The trickiest traders might begin a negotiation inflicting consequences of higher costs on the PCs.

You can also resist cost - you keep haggling, call in a favor, or take something and leave without paying. Not all of these are always possible, given the circumstances though - while you might Smash the goods out of the trader’s hands, they’re still going to remember this and stop doing business with you at best, report you to the authorities at worst.

Gold in the Dungeon
Gold has some other specific uses with minions and creatures. These will be detailed later in the relevant sections, but below is a quick overview of how it can be spent.

❖ Spend 1 gold to have a minion perform an extra downtime activity.
❖ Spend 1 gold to have a minion accompany you on a raid.
❖ Spend 1 gold to have a minion go on a mission during roaming.
❖ Spend 1 gold to give a helper 1 morale.
❖ Spend 1 or more gold to roll revelry to gain Hearts.
❖ Spend gold to satisfy the requirements for a ritual.

Trappings & Supply
These are the tools of your trade - weapons, traps, lanterns, wands, rope, bracers, shields-- you name it. While you’re always assumed to be wearing at least enough to cover yourself, your trappings and supply are all the extra or cool stuff you have that help define your character.

Trappings are the items that you always have on you and make regular use of. They
help define your character’s look and provide you with a defense based on their
utility. You can carry 4 items as trappings.

Supply are the things that you own or have access to, but might not always be
carrying on you. They’re things stowed on your belt, across your back, or in a bag.
Instead of completely gearing up and declaring exactly what you’re carrying before
roaming, supply allows you to flexibly pull items out of your inventory when you
need them. You get 2 supply boxes and when you pull something out of supply, you
mark one of the boxes, which refresh on recovery.

A supply item must be able to be carried in one hand or fit nicely into a
backpack - you can’t just suddenly be wearing armor or carrying around
something huge. There’s a logical limit to what can be pulled from
supply and the GM has the final say on it.

Items such as alchemicals, potions, or anything else that is consumable must be placed in supply.

Anytime that you go out of your way to buy, steal, make, or acquire an item by any
other means, you can add it to your supply. Several base rooms add a type of item
to each character’s supply and you can also gain supply from calling abilities.

Items can be considered as a circumstance towards effect or give permissions to
perform an action. Having the correct tools for the job is important - you’re going to
have a tough time picking a lock without a lockpick or swimming across a river in
armor. And without the right tool, some things are just impossible.

If several items serve the same purpose, you can combine them into one trapping or
supply. For example, you don’t have to separately list a helmet, hide armor, and
shield if all you want is for them to provide a defense against wounds. You can just
list them as “armor”. Writing down “tool pouch” might make more sense than
writing out hammer, screwdriver, etc. The bigger the impact a single item has,
though, the more likely it should be on its own. A tool pouch might contain several
useful items for tinkering, but a saw might best be listed on its own.

Limited Supply is when the dungeon has gained a limited resource of something and all members can access it as supply. These supplies are represented by a counter, usually with 4 segments, that you tick off 1 each time it’s used.

You make a deal with some dwarves to allow them passage for ale (4-clock supply of ale). You rob a royal caravan of fantastic silks (4-clock supply of fancy silk).

Many examples of items that each calling might have in their trappings or supply can
be found under Character Creation.

Trapping Defense
Your trappings provide you with a single defense based on the items you’ve chosen. You can change this defense during recovery.

Trapping Defense Examples
❖ Detection : You wear a dark cloak or have soft boots.
❖ Magic: You wear a spirit mask or an enchanted cloak.
❖ Lies being discovered : You wear impressive clothes or jewelry.
❖ Wounds: You have heavy armor or a shield.

You work with the GM to decide what defense your trappings provide you. The above are just examples and the defense could be anything you can connect with your trappings. When selecting a defense, making sure that it’s not too narrow or too broad is important. They should be something that could plausibly come up around once a session, but not something that always comes up.


Like other items, weapons are counted as circumstance bonuses towards effect. If
you’re fighting heavily armored enemies, you might need a bigger weapon - but
carrying around a bigger weapon is going to make movement a lot more difficult.
The most common weapons strike a good balance - a sword can be held in one hand
and easily stowed away or carried while moving, but is also deadly enough to deal
significant damage to most enemies. A dagger might struggle against armored
opponents, but can be hidden and makes movement easy. A huge battleaxe is going to
crush through enemy armor, but could make swimming across a river quite a

Weapons and Ammo with Supply
Weapons can be placed in supply like any other item. Perhaps you sometimes
happen to have a dagger or a shortbow on you, but not always. The flexibility
of supply allows you to focus your trappings on the things that really define
your character.

How ammunition is handled is to just assume you always have enough until you don’t. This makes for a great consequence to hand out to someone using a bow or throwing knives - “You
just realize-- that was your last arrow.”

Picking Stuff Up
Your trappings are what you generally carry, but you can pick stuff up along the way
as well. You can usually carry an item or two besides your trappings & supply, but
you’ll be slowed down while carrying them. Remember that the rules flow from the
fiction - if you’re trying to carry something immensely heavy or hard to carry, maybe
you’re going to have to drop some of your equipment.
The GM
 GM, 25 posts
Sun 26 Jan 2020
at 16:52
Rebel Scum rules...
Power Struggles
Sometimes, the PCs may come into conflict with each other-- shenanigans, arguments, and fights aren't all that uncommon. To allow for this without making such interaction feel mechanically punitive, PCs can engage in power struggles.

When two or more PCs are at odds, the GM can call for a power struggle.
❖ Each player chooses an action you try to use to get your way and roleplays the conflict starting.
❖ When it comes time to determine a winner, you roll at the same time.
❖ The winner then narrates how they end up winning.
❖ The loser then narrates their reaction, closing out the scene.

Power struggles are completely narrative - nobody takes wounds, nobody loses stress no matter how violent or crazy the narrative gets. Occasionally, a gold or an item may change hands, but that should be the extent of it.

With multiple participants, things can get a bit more complex and freeform. The
point here is to keep it light, though, and spread the spotlight around. Keep in mind
that players never spend resources on power struggles - they can’t spend Hearts,
they don’t mark off stress or wounds. They can activate abilities or cast spells, but
they don’t provide any extra benefit to their chances of winning. The rule keeps
things very simple - just choose action ratings and roll them as a fortune roll.

Example: Can’t Decide on a Raiding Plan
An argument breaks out about how to raid a ferry crossing and the table gets locked into a bit of deadlock. The characters are all standing around a table yelling at each other. The GM says, “Looks like a power struggle. Who’s in?”

The Barbarian says, “Yeah, I’m going to Smash things angrily until you all start listening to me.” The Shadow jumps in, “I’m definitely going to Sneak into the shadows here and wait for an opening.”

The Barbarian says, “I slam my fist down hard on the table and demand a full scale attack on the ferry crossing, eyeballing each of you.”

The GM says, “Let’s see some rolls.” The Barbarian rolls 3d for his Smash, getting a mixed. The Shadow rolls her Sneak, also 3d, getting a success. “Awesome,” says the Shadow. “Okay, I slip up behind the Barbarian and put my dagger to his neck. ‘I think a lighter touch might be in order.’”

The Barbarian player laughs, “Dammit… Okay, knowing I’ve been outdone, I turn my head a bit, then glance at the Shadow and snort, ‘Okay, thief-- but if this doesn’t work, it’s on you.”

Running a dungeon requires many decisions to be made by the players. Discussing these out a bit can be fun, but most of the time you’re going to want to land on a decision quickly. This could be deciding what creature to attract, what the next raid target and plan is, what room to build, or what to do with all those elven prisoners.

Amongst the rebels, these indecisions have a way of getting sorted out quickly. Anytime the PCs hit this kind of deadlock, the GM can call for a power struggle.

Making Even Losing a Power Struggle Fun
The back and forth pattern to power struggles is important-- handing off the narrative reins to each participate means they share the screen time and both players can feel like the scene was worth playing out. Giving the loser the last say helps shore up any hard feelings and make sure their character saves face. Nobody likes their PC to look like a fool or a loser, but determining the shape that the loss takes can be a lot of fun.

It keeps play moving, so don’t hold grudges with this stuff - let it wash off your character’s back and move on. It’s a mechanism to keep the game flowing nicely, but also
a nice chance for some rebel vs. rebel drama. You’re all a bunch of hunted fugitives, basically criminals-- it makes sense that you might not always see a situation in the exact same way.

If at some point it becomes important that the PCs are trying to actually harm each
other, such as a rebel following their nature while having Lost It, there are two options:

❖ The GM sets the consequence that the loser of the power struggle must face.

❖ The game progresses using normal position and effect, alternating between who makes action rolls. The GM judges how dangerous or effective the PC making the action roll would be and if there’s a consequence, the other PC gets a hand in deciding it. It’s best to decide the consequences before rolls are made.

If everyone isn’t on board with a power struggle, especially one with consequences, the GM should just narrate a neutral conclusion and move on instead. Power struggles aren’t meant to force players into situations they don’t want their characters to be in. If everyone at the table isn’t having fun with it, it’s a better idea to find a different direction for the game to go in.

PCs start off competent, but not exactly strong. A rebel fighter PC is about on equal
footing with a normal caravan guard in a fight. A conniver might be able to match
wits with a local cleric. A warlock is about on level with a magician's apprentice. In
the beginning, failure can be regularly expected.

But as you gain xp, you grow more competent. You can rely on your actions more and
gain additional abilities, turning into something much more terrible and powerful.

If you make a roll and fail, you get 1 xp.


When the GM tells you that "This marks the end of this chapter," mark 1 xp for each trigger met, and detail how it happened:
❖ You made progress on your master plan. What did you accomplish? What lies ahead?
❖ You used a scene to bring the base to life. How did you fill the time between raids and invasions with interesting cuts of rebel life?
❖ You did something a non-rebel wouldn't do. How did your actions reflect your nature?
❖ You utilized your trappings in creative ways. How did your most prized possessions come into play?

The master plan is something the group works toward together, and if progress is made, everyone gains 1 xp for it.

When 9 xp has been gotten in this way, you gain a new ability.

XP is tallied up at the end of each session no matter where it ended in the cycle of play. Each player goes down their list of xp triggers, recounting what happened during the session. You can help each other out by reminding someone of something they forgot to do. As a good rule of thumb, if nothing comes immediately to mind, you shouldn’t take XP for it-- it should be fairly clear when the triggers are hit.

Players, make sure to track your xp during the game! It’s your responsibility, not the GM’s.

Bringing in New Characters Later in the Game
If you lose your character, the nature of the dungeon makes it easy to bring in a new one. Bases are generally open to new rebels moving in, and someone with valuable skills would quickly prove to be useful. Another option is to promote a helper, having them step up in the ranks and becoming one of the key rebels.

When you make a new character, you get 1 extra ability and 1 extra action dot per dungeon tier.

When bringing in a new character, setting up an off-screen montage works well.

❖ How do you prove your worth and gain the acceptance of the other PCs?

❖ How are you more than just another helper?

Using your friends and known enemies to link you together with the base somehow makes for an easy in-road. A power struggle also sets the tone really nicely to have a new PC work their way into the base.

Bringing New PCs into the Story
You should try not to spend too much time on the specifics of how the rebel moves into the base here - you’re rebels and they’re a powerful, useful newcomer. That’s what your base needs more of, so as long as they’ll pull their weight. Make it easy for new PCs to work themselves in. It’s up to the other PCs as much as it is the new PC to open up the story for a new character to join in.
The GM
 GM, 26 posts
Sun 26 Jan 2020
at 18:27
Rebel Scum rules...
Tiers are used to establish relative power of elements within their own categories.
You use them when you need to know how things stack up against each other. Tiers
are rated from 0 to 4, with 0 representing something that is small or weak and 4
representing something incredibly powerful. They only directly compare things
within the same category.

Each tier is basically worth double what its previous tier is. Something that is tier 3 should be twice as powerful as something that is tier 2. For example, two tier 2 factions working together could possibly take down a tier 3 faction. Four tier 1 factions could possibly do the same. It would take 8 tier 1 factions to face off against a tier 4 faction.

Tiers can sometimes be considered as a circumstance towards effect when it makes sense for the relative power of the two things to have an effect. If you are using a spell of a lower tier to attempt to counter a higher tier ritual, you would take -effect on the roll.

Throughout the game, tiers will be used as a way to compare elements of the game within their own categories. The tier system is a rating between 0 and 4. Tier 0 represents something within its category that is small or weak, just starting off or barely worth the time to notice. Tier 4 represents the highest level of quality or power, something strong and valuable, within its category.

Your base will have a tier, starting off at 0. This will compare to faction tiers and
establish how powerful of targets you can tackle. Spells and rituals, as well as alchemicals and potions, have tiers, too. Your base's creatures, if any, also have tiers, as well as the attackers that invade your base. While many elements have tiers, it’s important to remember that they’re representations of relative power within that category - a tier 3 base doesn’t “equal” a tier 3 mercenary.


Some rebels are drawn to the power found within magic and science. They learn to cast spells tinged with darkness or craft incredible contraptions. Others ply their time mixing alchemicals, noxious concoctions with bizarre effects or engaging in long rituals to harness the most powerful magic they can wield.

This chapter lays out how magic and science work, providing examples and giving the proper scope to what’s possible with it.

The examples covered on the next few pages are just that - examples. Use them along with the base guidelines when creating your own magic and science! Actual mechanical balance is far less important than the tier “feeling right,” so when in doubt, go with your gut on judging the item tiers.


Things created with magic or science are often volatile in nature. Magic items, alchemicals, potions, contraptions - all can be volatile unless perfectly crafted.

When an item has the volatile property, it comes with some drawback when using or even just carrying it. A freezing potion might also freeze the potion bottle, making it very fragile and likely to break. A bottled rage potion might cause you to become beholden to a specific condition like “ I can’t tell friends from foes”. A contraption that shoots fire might deal a light wound to yourself any time you use it. The exact nature of the volatility is up to the GM, but they should try to make it something that still makes using the item worth using, but is troublesome or annoying to do so.

Volatile tends to scale with tier, with the most powerful items having the greatest
level of volatility. Minor items might give some small annoyance, but powerful items
might be quite dangerous to wield.

If an item is volatile, it will have the nature of the volatility listed in parenthesis after the item.

Magic is broken up into three disciplines - sorcery, shamanism, and channeling. The difference between them is the source of their power and the form it takes when you Invoke it.
❖ Sorcery (for Mages) draws power from strange, arcane forces.
❖ Shamanism (for Shamans/Druids) draws power from spirits and nature.
❖ Channeling (for Clerics) draws power from mysterious beings of great power.

You Invoke spells and rituals, creating magical effects that fall within the scope of your path. Each discipline has several paths which determine what kind of magical effects you can create. To cast magic within a certain path requires you to have an implement specific to that path in your trappings or supply through which to focus your magic. To cast higher tier spells and rituals, you must have the appropriately relevant calling ability.

Crystal balls, strange powders, crooked wands, crazy spirit masks, ancient tones-- these are arcane implements, the tools magic wielders use to focus their magic. The choice of implement is up to you, but you should try to connect it strongly with the path of magic
you use.

Sorcery Paths
You reach out and seize control of primal, arcane energies, twisting them to serve your purpose. Mages/Sorcerers can learn to cast higher-level spells within this discipline.

❖ Enchantment allows you to beguile and bewitch your foes, read their minds, plant false ideas, and even compel them to obey you.

❖ Evocation allows you to summon monsters to do your bidding.

❖ Magic Mastery allows you to control primal power, lifting and moving objects or even yourself.

❖ Hexomancy allows you to manipulate the forces of luck and entropy, causing chaos and decay.

❖ Illusion allows you to control darkness and shadows, using them to craft illusions, darken or lighten areas.

❖ Necromancy allows you to wield negative energy to hasten death, sap strength, or control the dead.

❖ Pyromancy allows you to conjure and manipulate flames, lava, and heat.

Channeling Paths
You call upon a Power, a mysterious being which, in return for your calling, allows you to wield a small fraction of their power for yourself.

You can choose one of the following beings to follow, or make up your own. Whomever you choose acts as your path. Each has a title followed by two domains which help define the scope of the magic you can cast. If you make your own, work with the GM to define these well.

❖ Melawa, The Keeper of Secrets, (Power of Knowledge and Truth)
❖ Zaheen, The Dancing Swordsman, (Power of Luck and Chaos)
❖ Talza, The Relentless Stalker, (Power of Vengeance and the Hunt)
❖ Vahoona, The Moon's Keeper, (Power of Dreams and Darkness)
❖ Melkahar, The Sage of Order, (Power of Healing and Resiliance)
❖ Kabisha, The Collector of Shields, (Power of Battle and Protection)
❖ Dalgeth, The Celestial Spy, (Power of Vigilance and Secrets)
❖ Zoan, The Blessed Emperor, (Power of Boundaries and Scheming)
❖ Nezame, The Child at Play, (Power of Small Things and Promises)
❖ Irina, The Kind Mother, (Power of Peace and Music)
❖ Zashak, The Destroyer from Above, (Power of Tempests and Floods)
❖ Thars, The Bold Knight, (Power of Bravery and Leadership)
❖ Ushen, The Generous Old Man, (Power of Generosity and Fellowship)

Shaman Paths
You call upon or compel natural and ancestral spirits to assist you. You have a strong connection with the most basic forces of nature. Shamans can learn to cast higher level spells within this discipline.

❖ Bloodspeaking gives you power over the bodies of living creatures, such as controlling their movements.

❖ Divination allows you to send your sight far and wide, looking into pools of water to see distant lands, the past, or even very brief, chaotic glimpses of what will likely be the future.

❖ Druidism gives you power over plants and animals which you can summon and command.

❖ Stonespeaking allows you to affect the spirits of earth and metal.

❖ Stormcalling allows you to control the elements of weather - wind, water, and lightning.

Magic paths are not meant to be comprehensive. They represent the most common magical traditions that exist, so there are bound to be some gaps. If a style of magic isn’t covered here, a player can work with the GM to define it themselves.

Laws of Magic
Invoking magic means using a spell to do one of two things - using Invoke in place of another action to accomplish something or creating an effect not possible without magic. When you use Invoke in place of another action, focus on what you want to accomplish. For example, you could Finesse open a lock with a lockpick or you could Invoke a hexomancy spell to cause the lock mechanism to fall apart. You could Smash a knight with a warhammer or Invoke a Magic Mastery spell to pummel them with a rock. The end result is essentially the same. When you’re creating completely new effects, focus on its usefulness compared to a normal action roll.

Spells are ranked from tier 0 (also called cantrips) to tier 3. While anyone can cast tier 0 and tier 1 spells as long as they have the appropriate implement, you must have an ability in order to cast tier 2 and tier 3 spells.

Tier 2 and Tier 3 spells are difficult and dangerous.

You must spend stress to Invoke tier 2 or 3 spells, and take a penalty on the roll as follows:

❖ Tier 2 spells take -1d on the roll.

❖ Tier 3 spells take -2d on the roll.

If the scope of a spell goes over tier 3, it is not possible to cast as a spell. It requires a ritual. PC spellcasters are powerful, but not all-mighty. Their spellcasting has certain limits which become clear in the examples later in this thread. The GM helps define the scale of magic, but it’s important to keep spellcasting balanced with other abilities.

This message was last edited by the GM at 21:18, Sun 02 Feb.

The GM
 GM, 27 posts
Sun 26 Jan 2020
at 19:08
Rebel Scum rules...

The tier of the spell is determined by the GM. The player states what they are trying to
accomplish, especially the intended result. The intended result is used by the GM to
judge the tier according to this chart:


Tier 0 (Cantrip)
No roll.
Results that anyone could easily accomplish. A nifty, stylistic, mildly useful or otherwise minor effect.
❖ Snap your fingers and light a candle.
❖ Whisper Zashak's name and the cathedral shutters blow open violently.
❖ Call the wind to make your cape blow behind you.
❖ Send a shiver down someone’s spine, forcing them to turn around and notice you standing behind them.

Tier 1
No Stress
No Penalty

Results that a trained person with the right equipment could quickly accomplish. These spells allow you to roll Invoke in place of another action.

❖ Ensorcel the horse’s mind, inflaming it with anger to buck off the rider.
(mimics Trick or Command)

❖ Beseech Zashak and send a bolt of lightning arcing towards the rider in plate
mail. (mimics Finesse or Smash)

❖ Focus intently and hear the pounding heartbeat and blood rushing through the veins of the hidden rogue. (mimics Scan)

❖ Summon two tiny elementals to trip the farmer chasing you down. (mimics Finesse or Tinker)

Tier 2
Take Stress

Results that a team of people could accomplish in a short time or a single person over a longer period. This can also be results otherwise impossible without magic, with a power level about equal to a normal action.

❖ Control the plants around you to vine their way across a gap, creating a small bridge.
❖ Listen intently as Melawa tells you when the adventurers will arrive.
❖ Conjure an illusion of a wyvern flying overhead, scaring off the pursuing cavalry.
❖ Summon a wolf to hunt down the fleeing captive.

Tier 3
Take Stress

Results that even a team of trained professionals would take quite some
time to accomplish. This can be unbelievable magical results, more
powerful than a normal action.

❖ Hit the town wall with a huge amount of force, blowing a hole in it.
❖ Leave your body behind as you enter the spirit realm and head off to possess a
caravan guard.
❖ Request that Zaheen infest the minds of the guards in the village, causing them to see images of their own demise so that they flee.
❖ Enchant the guards’ minds, causing them to forget that they even saw you kill their friend.

Expanding the scope, area, or duration of a spell adjusts its tier upwards. By default,
spells are instantaneous or short-lived effects and affect a single target or a limited
area. You might adjust the tier upwards if:
❖ You expand the scope from a single target to a few targets, or a few targets
to many targets.
❖ You expand the area from a small area to a medium area, or a medium area
to a large area.
❖ You expand the duration from a short time to a medium time, or a medium
time to a long time.

Invoke can be used to make resistance rolls as well, though you must describe the spell you are casting to resist it. The GM sets the tier and you take stress and a penalty to the roll as normal based on the tier. Generally speaking, though, resisting can almost always be done with a tier 1 spell.

Example: Causing a Scene
Arno, an shaman with bloodspeaking magic, has stowed away in a cart heading into town. His target is a charm necklace that a merchant is hawking in the town square - a charm he knows he needs to finish his ritual. As the cart pulls close to the merchant’s stand, Arno says, “Okay, I need to get that charm and get out of here, so I want to cause some distractions. Maybe I can make the merchant stiffen up and fall over suddenly, drawing attention.”

The GM says, “Yeah, that sounds like a tier 1 spell to me, kind of like a Trick. You could push it and make it also affect the 3 or 4 people standing around the stand. That’d be tier 2.”

Arno thinks, “I think I want to go big here - let’s make everyone in this square suddenly get paralyzed and fall over. Then I’ll snatch the charm and make my escape.”

The GM, “Awesome, that’s a tier 3 spell, so you take -2d on your action roll here. This is going to be dangerous / normal. If you fail, your spell’s probably going to backfire on you in this busy town square.” Arno grabs some dice.

All of these factors for spells are very subjective - how long is a medium amount of
time? How big of an area is a large area? A “large area” for a fireball will be different
than a “large area” for a storm. This is all up to the GM. You decide how powerful
magic is in your game. Over the next few pages, there are several examples that can
help form a basis for magic in your setting, but it’s really up to you to set the
limitations of magic. Think about and set some limits - what can magic not do? Using
these guidelines, you create a framework for how magic functions.

Miscellaneous Spellcasting Rules
Spellcasting is very open-ended and most rules can be judged by the GM on the fly, but this list sets some baselines for GMs to go off of to provide balance to some of the trickier aspects of magic.

❖ Dispel: Persistent magical effects can be dispelled with Invoke as well. The tier of the spell required is set by the strength of the magic in play, which is determined by the GM.

❖ Summoning: Any summoned minions are short-lived, usually lasting only a scene. Minions can be permanently summoned with rituals. A tier 1 spell might make a minion with very limited usage or no control by the caster, while a tier 3 spell could be something that
you can control like a normal helper.

Setting the Scope of Magic
The scope of magic exists within the GM’s mind - everyone is going to have a
different idea of it, but much like position and effect, the GM is in the best
place to consistently judge magical effects over time. GMs, try to be
transparent and open to questions about why you’ve judged the effects in
certain ways. This will help inform your players’ decisions as they get used to
the power level of magic. Players, be forgiving if the GM judges two identical
spells as different tiers - judging something so incredibly flexible can be
tough. We’re all human, right?

Potions are bottled magical concoctions with potent effects, usually in liquid form,
but it’s not unheard of to find these essences distilled into a dust or another form.
They are single-use items and have the effects of equivalent-tier spells. Cantrip level
potions are also possible, though incredibly minor effects and not detailed below.


Tier 1 Potions that mimic tier 1 spells:
❖ Firefly: Upon consuming this potion, you shine like a firefly.
❖ Blowfish: You float very well, making it unlikely to drown but a bit difficult to
move against the current.
❖ Sticky: Magically fuse two things together.
❖ Booming voice: Your voice is way louder than normal.
❖ Featherfall: Slow your descent on a fall.
❖ Protection: You gain a defense against something specific.

Tier 2 Potions that mimic tier 2 spells:
❖ Fishgills: You can breathe underwater.
❖ Spiderlegs: You can walk on walls.
❖ Firebreath: You can shoot an enormous blast of fire from your mouth.
❖ Terror: You become incredibly scary looking, the manifestation of the viewer’s
worst fears.
❖ Vanishing: You disappear momentarily, reappearing if you touch something with your hands or something touches you.
❖ Blink: You teleport to the location you throw the potion.

Tier 3 Potions that mimic tier 3 spells:
❖ Shapechange: You turn into a creature, determined when the potion is made.
❖ Giantsize: You double in size.
❖ Ratsize: You halve in size.
❖ Tongues: You can speak and understand any language.
❖ Invisibility: You turn completely invisible for a short time.
❖ Flying: You can fly for a short time.

Rituals push magic to its limits, allowing you to bring forth truly impressive magical
effects. Rituals allow you to apply magic in ways that have greater impact on the
overall story. To cast a ritual, you must have an appropriate calling ability giving you
access to rituals. This requirement can be bypassed if you have learned the details of
how to prepare a specific ritual from some source.

Rituals are rated from tier 1 to tier 3 and judged by the GM based on their narrative
weight - how much impact they have on the story:


Tier 1: Results that change the story in ways useful for the PCs, but with minor impact on NPCs. NPCs may struggle with the fallout, but it’s generally a minor obstacle or setback.
❖ Raise a group of skeletons to permanently serve you as a helper.
❖ Build a teleportation circle focused on two specific locations.
❖ Learn the location of the mayor’s daughter.

Tier 2: Results that give the PCs a strong advantage or force NPCs into disadvantageous situations. NPCs will likely confront the fallout, being a major obstacle or setback though not usually an existential threat.

❖ Plant the seeds of fear in the baron’s mind, causing him to betray the duke.
❖ Conjure a large wall of ice, blocking the mountain path.
❖ Bathe the forest in a lingering fog, keeping townsfolk from entering.

Tier 3: Results that alter the entire dynamic of the story. NPCs are left with no option other than to immediately deal with the fallout.

❖ Call forth a mighty avalanche to cover the road through the mountains and the regiment of soldiers marching through it at the time.
❖ Make a shaman practically a minor power in and of himself/herself.

Rituals are prepared as downtime activities during the lurking phase. You have to fulfill a number of special requirements equal to the tier of the ritual. The special requirements are determined by the GM and should be something quite challenging to accomplish, usually requiring a raid.

When you complete a ritual, immediately make a blowback roll depending on the tier of the ritual. A tier 1 ritual rolls 3d, a tier 2 ritual rolls 2d, and a tier 3 ritual rolls 1d. On a mixed or failure, outside forces attempt to intervene and the ritual cannot be completed until the blowback from it is dealt with.

Special Requirements for Rituals:

❖ Intimate materials: You need an item that the target of the ritual greatly values
or cares about deeply. Why is it important to them?

❖ Secret Knowledge: You require secret, arcane information from a specific source. What will you have to give up to acquire this knowledge?

❖ Ritual cleansing: Your body must be thoroughly cleansed with ointment, a rare potion, or other special materials. Where does this bathing occur?

❖ Blood magic: You must feed the ritual with your own blood, leaving you with a
wound. What does the scar look like?

❖ Rare ingredients: You must collect these rare ingredients before you can cast the
spell - often from high, inaccessible mountain peaks or at the bottom of deep, dark lakes. What stands between you and the ingredient?

❖ Timing: You can only perform the ritual at a specific time, such as a certain lunar
phase or when the stars align. What is significant about the timing?

❖ Fasting: You are not allowed to eat while preparing this ritual. You take shock to
one of your attributes after each downtime that you rolled to prepare this ritual. Why must you go through such suffering?

❖ Place of power: You must perform the ritual at a specific place of power such as a
long forgotten battlefield or deep within a volcano. How does the place magnify your arcane might?

❖ Trial: You must undergo some trial or perform a specific action to prove yourself
worthy before the ritual can be completed, such as swimming across a dangerous river, or finding and killing a wyvern in a particular way. What makes the task even more dangerous than is immediately apparent?

Magic Items
Rebels are bound to find magic items hanging off the bodies of dead mercenaries or hidden away in a wizard’s chest. Magic items are rated from tier 1 to tier 3 and judged similarly to rituals based on their narrative weight. Basically, magic items are judged by how useful they are and how much impact they have on the story. Magic items are created by performing a ritual with a tier equal to the magic item’s tier.

Magic Items
Tier 1: Items that are fun, interesting, crazy, but with limited power and
❖ Filcher’s Monocle: When worn, any gold or silver within eyesight surrounds
itself with a faint aura that you can see even if the valuables are hidden.
❖ Skeleton Key: This lock can open any non-magical lock without needing to roll.
If it is used to open a magical lock, it can roll its tier against it.

Tier 2: Items that provide strong bonuses for the wielder or force NPCs into undesirable situations.
❖ Cheater’s Coin: When flipped, it will give whatever result the user wants.
(Demands one gold before it can be used again, placed on the coin which
devours it)
❖ Orb of Darkness: Cloaks an area around the orb in darkness, even in broad
daylight. When covered with a cloth, the darkness effect is smothered. (Substantially heavier than it looks)

Tier 3: Items that alter the entire dynamic of the story. These provide an overwhelmingly powerful bonus to the wielder or NPCs are left with no option other than to immediately deal with the item.
❖ Crystal Ball: You can see anything within miles of your location. (Take shock if
the scrying eye is noticed)
❖ Wand of Fireballs: Can create an immense fireball at the target location. (Costs
stress to use)

Generally speaking, magic items give the abilities that you didn’t previously have.
They can be considered as a circumstance towards effect when they apply, but items
tend to allow you to do something new rather than more effectively. As an example,
Filcher’s Boots don’t allow you to sneak around more quietly - they make gold and
silver give off a faint glowing aura that you can more easily see, making it easier to

Magic items are often volatile, coming with some drawback that balances out their
power. They might require you to spend stress to use it, only be possible to use under
certain circumstances, whisper paranoid thoughts to you when you’re under
pressure, or anything else that seems fitting.

Within your base, there may be many “magic” things that are covered by different mechanics - magical constructs that serve you as helpers, magical locks to keep mercenaries at bay, and so on. Magic items generally cover items that can be equipped or carried by characters.

When you make an action roll with a magic item, you roll the item’s tier or the wielder’s relevant ability, whichever is higher.

Figuring Out Tiers is Mostly Gut Feeling:
This method of judging items, much like spells, can be a bit tricky. When in doubt, go with your gut. For example, if an item with two tier 1 effects doesn’t really feel strong enough to be considered tier 2, then maybe just leave it at tier 1. If that still doesn’t feel right, maybe make it volatile and see if that feels a bit more balanced.
The GM
 GM, 28 posts
Sun 26 Jan 2020
at 20:20
Rebel Scum rules...
Some rebels prefer to put their brains to work, coming up with clever solutions within the laws of reality. Whereas magic has a wider upper end, the study of science tends to be more broadly applicable than magic paths.

Powders, polstices, poisons, oils, and bombs-- alchemicals are single-use items thrown together in (mad) science laboratories with reagents like saltpeter, magnesium, and ether. Herbal, plant, or fungus-based concoctions are also considered alchemical in nature. Alchemicals are rated from tier 1 to tier 3, based on how effective and dangerous they are.


Tier 1: Alchemicals with simple, clear, or useful effects that are generally easy to make.
❖ Sunrod: A small, flexible stick that burns brightly when you crack it and smells
strongly of sulfur.
❖ Stink bomb: Instantly fills an area with a horrid smell, likely to make anyone
with a weak stomach wretch.
❖ Sneezing powder: Causes incessant sneezing for a few seconds, sometimes
❖ Itching Powder: Instantly sends itching sensations all along skin exposed to it.
❖ Firedancers: Small fireworks that shoot into the sky.
❖ Insomnia Powder: A sour smelling powder that instantly snaps your eyes awake with lingering effects that last overnight.
❖ Blister Oil: Causes instant blistering in an area of skin.
❖ Lamp Oil: Simple, flammable, effective.

Tier 2: Alchemicals with dangerous, potent, or even deadly effects that sit firmly within the laws of nature.
❖ Snake Poison: A concoction that quickly leads to death.
❖ Tar Bomb: Showers an area with tar when it explodes.
❖ Rusting Powder: Immediately causes metal to rust and decay.
❖ Bomb: Causes an explosion, enough to level a small house or maybe blow a hole
in a town wall. Very effective, though getting to safety is the problem.
❖ Thunderstone: A bright flash and a bang, enough to temporarily daze, deafen,
and blind anyone looking at it. Knock it on something twice, then throw.
❖ Bottled Rage: You become a horrible killing machine, adrenaline pumping through your veins, eyes filled with red hate. (Volatile: Can’t tell friend from foe.)
❖ Numbing Tonic: You ignore the dice penalty from being injured.

Tier 3: Alchemicals with incredible, mysterious, or devastating effects. These twist the laws of nature and push the very limits of pseudoscience.
❖ Zombie Juice: Turns a corpse into an insane, hungry zombie for the next 5 hours.
❖ Lightbending Fluid: Cover yourself in this fluid and light will bend around you,
making you virtually invisible.
❖ Quickfreeze: Causes the temperature to drop in the area rapidly.
❖ Aging Tonic: Makes the drinker age rapidly.
❖ Bottled Paranoia: Makes someone incredibly paranoid, disbelieving everything.
❖ Essence of Night: Sucks the light straight out of a room, causing deep darkness for several seconds.
❖ Everburning Torch: A light source that never fades, burning as bright as a normal torch without any heat.

Edges are minor improvements that make items a little better. Edges do not give the ability to do new things like contraptions (next section), but improve on already existing functionality.

Edge Examples:
❖ Camouflaged : Take +effect when sneaking in a forest.
❖ Easy to Use: Always roll at least 1d when using it.
❖ Hidden : Can be hidden more easily than a normal version.
❖ Hooked : Take +effect when tripping or disarming someone.
❖ Light: Does not take up a trapping slot.
❖ Terrifying: Take +effect when using it to scare someone.
❖ Trusty: Extremely difficult to break or remove from your possession.
❖ Pulverizing: Take +effect when destroying stone or armor.

Edges sometimes give +effect to some activity, but you must be careful to limit its scope to something quite specific.

When mundane equipment can do something extra beyond its normal function, it’s best represented by an edge. For example, a six-armed demon with a sword in each hand could list those as a single trapping called “excess volume of swords” on their character sheet, with the Trusty edge to represent how they are difficult to disarm or lose. If there’s not an appropriate edge in the list above, work with the GM to make your own!

Science can push the limits of what’s possible: hot air balloons, rocket boots, portable catapults - you name it. These are called contraptions and with them, only the laws of reality are your limit.

Contraptions are things that don’t already commonly exist, with good reason - they are always volatile in some way.

Contraptions are rated from tier 1 to tier 3 and how much a contraption pushes the
laws of science determines the tier of the item. You can’t just make anything you
want, of course. A rebel isn’t going to whip up an airplane - but a dirigible might
be possible! The tech level you should aim for here is “crappy steampunk.” Rebels
are generally a bit more willing to risk injury for the sake of science, allowing them to push the fantasy technology envelope into early steampunk level contraptions.

Incredibly complex creations might actually be the culmination of several different
contraptions. A mask that lets you breathe underwater and a small propeller might
function as some sort of makeshift submarine.

Tier 1: Simple and useful contraptions that aren’t commonly available, but well
within the possibility of being made given the technology level.
❖ Lighter: A small, oil-filled device that allows you to light a fire easily. (Bursts
into flames if struck)
❖ Gas Mask: While wearing this, you ignore the effects of alchemicals that affect
you when you breathe them in. (Extremely limited vision while wearing)
❖ Spyglass: A looking glass allowing you to see quite far in the distance.
(Incredibly fragile.)

Tier 2: Complex contraptions that are quite useful, but still realistically
imaginable to create.
❖ Glider: A large, rickety contraption that gives you a high degree of control over
your descent. (Weak and fragile frame)
❖ Parachute: A big parachute stuffed into a backpack allowing you to float to
safety. (No control over descent)
❖ Sticky Gloves: With these, you can climb and stick to any surface. (Cannot hold
other items in your hands while wearing)

Tier 3: Insane, completely off-the-wall creations that push the very limits of what might be possible.
❖ Chainsaw: A raucous machine of death and woodcutting. Cuts through anything but the heaviest armor like butter. (Take two consequences when you roll a failure)
❖ Rocket Boots: Obtain insane speeds or soar to great heights. (Hair trigger)
❖ Night-Vision Goggles: Allow you to see in darkness. (Blinded for a short time if
you look at a light source while wearing)

Key Differences between Magic and Science
Magic and science are two ways to do something similar - the biggest difference in
how the tiers are judged. Magic allows you to produce any effect unbounded by the
laws of reality, but within a narrow focused path. Their effects are based around
how much impact they have on the world and the story.

On the other hand, reality is the only limit to science. If you can think it up and
make it make some kind of sense in a pseudoscientific fashion, then you’re good to
go. As you’ll see later, science tends to be much easier to craft and doesn’t require
a calling ability like magic does. It’s more accessible, flexible, and easier to make,
but has limits on it that magic doesn’t.