Oco Campaign: Birth of the Necropolis Character Creation Guide
Section 1: History
Section 2: Character Creation RULES
Section 3: Initial Character Creation Background Mileus
Section 4: Mysticism on Oco
Section 5: Crystal Wizard Power listing
Section 1: History
Oco is my classical fantasy world based on various short stories and an old manuscript I wrote (The Unwilling God, found on this site). The foundational roots of the world are directly derived from earth’s western culture through the originating gods of Oco (see below). The Necropolis is an exploration of the largest city on Oco post Outworlder banishment. Unlike other Oco games, Birth of the Necropolis will focus inside the city of New Candide after an initial journey to the city.
o What has gone before you?
First there was the manuscript the Unwilling God, where the Outworlders and the dragon Erador and the god-splinter Nef-Shivrael-e warred for control of Oco. Their struggles ended in the banishment of all three and an era of peace and beneficent magic which flooded the world.
Then came the river barony campaign as humans warred with each other in and on the river. The blasted area of Jezric, a city that was destroyed in a nuclear firestorm launched by the Outworlders, was explored and necromancy was found to still be on the world.
Then another campaign in 2004 as heroes came to stop great evils infesting the Darkenkell Hunym-sidhe as well as Lower Saracea. Strange and apocalyptic prophecies abounded, a monstrous evil from the pits of the underworld. The 2004 campaign ended with the return of Erador, dragon Emperor of Glered-nigh, the Lord Predator of the World. From the underworld stirred entities that were never thought to exist; nameless formless despairs yawned at the edge of consciousness. The birth of a new race of Sidhe influenced by the spoor of Erador, the saurian Hunym-sidhe, now live outside the river in a dank swamp just outside the Darkenkell forest.
Now 60 years have passed. The Mountain of Dreams, home of the imperial dragons, sleeps quietly. The saurian Hunym-sidhe have grown, yet neither numerous nor visibly political. They are prone to madness, swift and deadly warriors but whose bones are fragile and whose magic is unknown. They are an obscure tribe, though they are occasionally seen as hired guards by other civilizations. The lands of the Darkenkell once again enjoy peace and trade with the city-states as does Lower Saracea. The small villages and the river baronies still engage in petty squabbles and trade but the river does not route to the city states. Therein are mostly tales of pirates and lost princesses save for the coffin caravans that bear the dead for the peacing. The city-states where you live are in an uneasy alliance. The far away lands such as the Koradesh Jungle and Upper Saracea you know of them only myth and rumor.
o Current Events, General Knowledge, Starting Point
Should you survive the journey from Sanctuary, where you are currently living, you will find yourself in the most magical city in the world, a city of riotous free trade, a city that attracts travelers from all over, and a guiding star to fetishists for the magical omens bubbling across the city streets. Originally ruled by an oligarchy, then the capitol of the Outworlder invasion, then ruled by one man, one power, one wizard who survived and stayed in the city through the depredations of Outworlder enslavement and led the city into the new dawn. That man was and is the great Thaumaturge Tobin. The city he rules sprawls out across the hills and boasts the greatest sophistication by his blood sorcery that turns the city gears and grants to all who die a peaceful rest, for no human in the city-state region who dies fails to have his family bring him to New Candide, which has recently come to be called in whispers the great Necropolis. Such sojourners seek a “resting preservative” to lay his body to rest so that he does not become a Jezrite, the walking dead. Not only such wonderful spells, but in New Candide a nexus of necromantic—ahem, I mean thaumaturgic energies spill over to the other fates and such drippings can be collected by all manner of seekers of power and sophistication.
o Basic Information you have about New Candide:
o Tobin is known as the Great Thaumaturge
o Thaumaturgy is blatant Necromancy, which is uncommon knowledge to norms, but evident plainly to wizards and necromancers.
o There have been no military threats to New Candide for the past 60 years. The same is not true for other city-states
o New Candide boasts the most advanced “civil engineering” in the world.
o There is some mighty spell called the blood tax that causes wounds to admit a wispy visible to normal sight puff of aether (?) that goes to the funerary tower (?)
o At night the streets are lit by Outworlder lamps in a blood red sheen
o The Funerary Tower at the heart of New Candide (–of Oco?) is crafted after the fall of the Outworlders but with Outworlder metals and by Nym from Mount Koral who now live as residents in the funerary aegis.
o New Candide is one of the few cities that welcome all races including Saurian Nym who are often seen on the city streets and often employed by some Aegis.
o Nona Cloaks are popular in many sections of New Candide—these are cloaks of a full length with a deep hood which tend to obfuscate appearance and even race. Some may be minorly thaumaturgically magical, e.g. – to per rolls for identification purposes and weaves and quality vary greatly. Most reduce movement by -1 or -3 depending on quality. Comparison: Popular as Cowboy hats and special holsters are for wild west cowboys; they obfuscate but advertise a certain badass welcoming trouble.
o The city is divided into 6 Aegis, which are also the months in the New Candide Calendar. Each governed in a loose confederation.
§ The Funerary, ruled by Tobin directly. The center of the cult that performs the peacing, the center of New Candide and a significant draw of capital and thaumaturgic energies
§ Ein- (also a person. The second most powerful Thaumaturge in New Candide, or so reputed) The region is known for the annual festival of Ein, city wide which takes place in the Coliseum. In the Month of Ein, there are no coliseum games. The Ein Aegis becomes like a Saturnalia during this time with frequent outbreaks famed for both their group mania, licentiousness and “fainting ecstasies”.
§ Free Legion-grants asylum to any who sign up. (or is it an asylum?) Famous for their slum region, known as the “rotgut hells”
§ Six Servants of New Candide: An area ruled by 6 servants owing Fealty directly to Tobin, even though they are not known to be thaumaturgic or related. Laerya, the Northrenrir, being the most unusual and renowned.
o Prism Village-a free-state under the protectorate of Fiero just outside of New Candide which allows free display of all magic and customs. Normal penal laws still enforced.
o Villages and Farms ring New Candide like a hazy un-designed cloud
Section 2: Character Creation RULES
- POINTS: 300pts, 250 power points + 50 Disadvantage points.
- RULE VARIANTS
- I will use basic hit location and allow placed shots
- I will use bleeding. (You will keep track of your PCs)
- Healing will be per dice maxima and may be applied per wound. Whether it is additive is dependent on special effect:
- A healing of a different special effect will be additive, e.g. a shaman heals your head wound repeatedly for 1d6 body then a white magic based wizard heals your head wound repeatedly for 1d6 body for an eventual total of 12 body.
- Healing of same special effects will not be additive. Two wizards in the same scenario channeling crystal magic using the white magic healing effect often denoted by lighter blue fires will only net a max of 6 body.
- Healing is very difficult to get approved and handled on a case by case basis.
- There are unguents and potions which may exist and rites and all manner of hocus pocus that would be independent
- As a final alternative, you may have other PCs purchase the peacing for you in the Funerary in advance of your demise.
- Maxima are entirely dependent on special effect (you may add advantages so long as they do not increase damage): 60 points worth of damage dice, 15 resistant defenses, 15 ego defense, 15 power defense. Some special effects such as wizardry may mean you get NO latent resistant defense beyond physical armor. Most special effect will not allow ego defense. Wizards specialize in ego defense; Necromancers in power defense. Most people who can wield a form of magic may opt to have 5 pts of power defense to represent their grounding in their magic; wizards and necromancers may have more. These are maxima; you should expect to have 15 power def turned down on a wizard because power defense is not their specialty, unless your wizard variant has some object or special effect that would be resistant to thaumaturgy.
- Char. maxima=20. Justify above 18 and double cost above 20
- Ego/5=base mental defense free for all players
- Ego x 5= initial sanity. Your sanity drops to zero if you become undead. You lose sanity when you fail an Ice role. Effects include, but are not limited to, temporary rages, withdrawal tendencies, enhanced senses, hallucinations, cognitive abilities. These abilities/disads have no impact on Character point values. They are just added to the sheet. Mild effects tend to be temporary.
- Expect minor deleterious effects at each -10% value
- Expect a major deleterious effect at -50%
- When you’re a zombie everything will be fine
- (Int X 2 + Con X 1 = Pre X1 + Ego X 2)/6 == Your Ice characteristic value. ICE roll is “9 + ICE/5“
- Ice figured Characteristic/5 = power defense for free
- 1 Slow people like your GM
- 2-3 Norms
- 3-4 Guards, professional bouncers fighters
- 5 elite martial warriors (I mean like 300 point physical warriors) This is an allowable max speed which requires justification.
- 6+ Extraordinary Supernatural Creatures. Allowable 6 if "Speed" is your characters Fortissimo! Other stats are below maxima significantly
- Wizard +1 limitation Speed points: Speed points only allowed for Crystal Wizardry only. A player could be speed 2-3 +3(+1 only with wizardry) or 3-4 +2. ((+1 only with wizardry) You could even do a speed 1 +5 This is Tex Avery’s Droopy. Don’t mess with Droopy.
- Knowledge skills and Professional skills are the same. Just use, ks and scholar for skill purchases. This will save you points if you want skill enhancer as scholar now covers both PS and KS. Still need to justify it in the character. Wizards are not smiths unless they want to augment smithing with magic and those are not PCs (task leaves no time for adventuring)
- All Special effect Magic must be rooted in an accompanying skill roll. Knowledge is Power. The Shaman’s Journey.
- Martial arts are allowed but should be integral to the character. Thoth have them, Gladiators too. Must purchase at least 10 points to have them.
- Area, Professional and Knowledge Skills increase in efficacy in direct proportion to their specificity, e.g. the city will be large. AK: New Candide will not buy you much. You may be very specific, e.g. AK: New Candide, Divyune Aegis, Bars, Taverns, and Inns
- FRAMEWORK NOTES
- Frameworks for fetishists must have a tight special effect to be approved, e.g. a the totem aspects of your fetish. I do not want VPNs or Gadgetpools, but I encourage/allow talent/.
- Wizards may have a loosely based Magic multipower as their effects are generated by crystal wizardry, even shamanic effects if their history includes shamanic training..
- Wizards may not take an elemental command.
- No VPN; No Gadget Pool
- Special note: skills like gadgeteering, or deduction based on your branch of magic are encouraged
- NOISY +1/2: Over 60 active points on any spell with attack powers automatically has noisy.– Those who can when they are actively detecting magic will know the direction and strength of the spell that went off in a 10 hex range/point of the spell. Invisible power effects would negate this but PCs are not allowed to buy invisible with powers of 60active points or > (intentionally). This counts on astral plane attacks also, which are normally invisible, but you need some astral sensitivity to hear the noise. There is a low level “magic” street noise any wizard will hear walking new Candide. The player must inform the GM when the PC is invoking a noisy power.
- +1/2 SKILL ROLL REQUIRED for MAGIC: Mystical Powers and Magickal Powers must all have an associated skill roll: Mysticism is magic talent and belief and will directed at magic. It does not allow for replication, experimentation and controls. There is only a little speculation as to why since the scientific method itself is in its infancy outside of smithies. Unusual rolls produce unusual results; unusual environments will produce unusual additional effects. Usually 14- unless special effect is focused. (PC is an idiot savant, PC trained extraordinarily)
- +1/4 UNPREDICTABLE on all magical special effects. This means under unusual circumstances beyond your ken there may be unusual magical effects occurring in any spell unaccounted for by training or environment. This is not an activation roll. The base power still works but it may manifest differently on different occasions in different realities due to ? It will be applied whether you take the limitation or not as it is a fundamental characteristic of the interdependency of Ocoan magicks.
- INDEPENDENT: Magical foci exist, magical independent foci exist. To start with one you have to pay the points and work with me on the history of the foci. Famous forges are the Koral Mountains and Sanctuary, both very far away. Your foci will be rooted in a magic; to others within your tradition, your foci will be independent. Items like shields which also have a mundane use, you may take the full limitation. Not taking the limitation does not protect the item from the GM’s NPCs who share your abilities.
- +1/2 REDUCED END Reduced end advantage/charges not allowed/highly restricted for wizards/necro combat powers
|14||Detect Magical Fibers 14- (Sight Group), Discriminatory and Analyze, Perceive into a single other dimension (17 Active Points); Limited Power: Unpredictable (-1/4)||0|
|5||Detect Magic 14- (Sight Group), Discriminatory and Analyze (12 Active Points); Instant (-1/2), Limited Power: Unpredictable (-1/4), Extra Time (Half Phase, -1/4), Nonpersistent (-1/4)|
- ExtraDimensional Movement. By the book. See the PC map attachment. Other dimensions exist and slide through Oco even as they are a part of the Ocoan that is the circumscribed infinite. They can be traveled or just communicated with. You don’t need powers to get this info, just a purse to visit your local medium (dime a dozen in New Candide), but if you want powers in this vein, Mer, Wizardy are the strongest backgrounds, but thaumaturgy and fetishists to a lesser degree can access some planes. Alas, so can witches with a sledgehammer’s grace. I don’t have a system, but intend to have multiple systems, because different groups see mysticism in radically different ways and that alters how and what one can do mystically which alters how you buy it. Always it will have some basis in a KS of your mysticism.
- Power defense refers specifically to Mystical attacks against self, such as drains and transforms. Power defense is also limited by special effect. (this is reflected by piercing drains where the pierce is bought only against wizards for example because the type of power defense a wizard has may be no good against papa Smurf’s type of ego destruction attack.
- Teleportation is always +1/2 noisy.
- Telepathy is roleplayed/experienced, not like reading a book. It carries inherent dangers unlisted. Thaumaturges may only have telepathy by linking it to domination (mind control). It also opens a 2way “mind link” and “karma merge” between target and destination. People with psych disads may inadvertently damage the caster
- Desolidification is available as spirit travel. It functions like normal desol except it includes the spirit world/astral plane which becomes accessible to you as you use desol and you become more accessible to its non-euclidean geometry and its non-linear sentience. Some NPCs may have Desol and can also attack non-desol. If no player character takes some form of this, you will need to find NPCs (should not be hard) or buy extra running (which usually works, crazy as that sounds).
- Desolidification most commonly known as spirit travel (the spirit plane on the map) is vulnerable to magic special effects.
- Aura reading-detect mystical strength, emotional state and physical state all in one roll. This is separate from a general detect magic. This could also be bought as a skill roll (3pts) or as telepathy, limited empathy. It depends on how you came to this mystical awareness. And will vary what you get from it. Many mystics have this of many types.
- Pre/Postcognition aka Destiny Sense– that allows one to sense a confluence of events around a person or item. However, the seer is also seen. This would only be available to the most mystical of character conceptions and could allow probability travel. It carries inherent dangers unlisted.
- Keen Sense-usually a draconic ability but known to Saur nymish magi as well as some wizards: It’s the ability to sense a beings unique karma so that one can immediately recognize the being again regardless how many metaphysical planes may separate you. A power bought as a skill, gen. May not be frameworked.
- Wizards! See the wizard section in Section 3: Initial Character Creation Milieus for additional power notes.
- Wizards 2! See Section 5: Crystal Wizard Power listing for a more granular look at powers. This listing will bend to your special effect somewhat