Custom Powers

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See also House Rules.

Creature Features

Hive Mind (-2)

  • Description: Rather than a lone entity, your consciousness is spread throughout a number of separate bodies. This allows you to perceive through their senses, but depending on just how divided you are, it can be hard to keep track.
  • Skills Affected: Alertness and Investigation.
  • Effects:
    • Many Bodies. Your singular, physical stress track is less usable in forms like this. Instead, each member of the swarm has its own physical stress track. For swarms of small entities - bees, ants, tiny snakes, and the like - the individuals likely have Diminutive Size, or their Endurance is otherwise treated as Mediocre for purposes of Physical Fortitude.
    • Senses of the Swarm. You can perceive through the senses of any member of your swarm, limited by how thinly you can spread your consciousness. You can only roll Investigation examinations from one perspective at a time. Further, dividing yourself broadly - such as by stationing split-off swarms at a number of different locations - can make it harder to pay passive attention. Each 'distribution' beyond the first grants a -1 penalty to the 'Passive Awareness' trapping of Alertness. (For example, if you station parts of yourself at four different clubs throughout the city, then you must roll Passive Awareness at -3 until you consolidate yourself more.)
    • All One Mind. A mental attack against any member of your swarm affects you. In addition, if parts of your swarm are taken out, you must defend (usually with Discipline) against a mental stress attack equal to the overflow of the taking-out attack.

Undying (-4)

  • Description: Though you can die, your body puts itself back together.
  • Musts: When taking this power, you must define and describe (as a power note) the means which can be used to kill you permanently.
  • Note: Use of this power by PCs is limited and subject to staff scrutiny.
  • Effects:
    • Death is a Nuisance. No "death" result is ever permanent unless special means are used (usually as determined by your creature type). When you die, you are unsconscious until the next sunrise or sunset, whichever happens first. After that, you begin to recover. All consequences recover at their normal rate; you need to take Recovery powers separately.
    • Suspended Animation. You can't recover from death if there's something keeping you dead. For example, it's impossible for your heart to heal if there's still a knife buried in it.
    • Okay, Maybe More Than a Nuisance (+1). Though you don't stay dead, you do suffer lasting effects from having been dead. When you recover from death, you suffer a consequence of Moderate or above severity. Regardless of Recovery powers, this consequence still takes at least one full session (week) to recover. The form of consequence depends on the character. Sometimes it's lingering, physical harm, as your body needs more time to be fully repaired. Often, it's a psychological problem: death is still a traumatic experience, even if you come back from it.
    • Not Very Special Means (+1). As well as more esoteric 'special means', there are more run-of-the-mill ways to permanently kill you. To qualify for this refund, these means must be theoretically available to everyone, and intuitive to use. Being vulnerable to being stabbed with oak wood would not qualify, as it's not intuitive. Common options for 'Not Very Special Means' include decapitation, and/or the body being thoroughly destroyed (by incineration, acid, a wood chipper, and so on).

Minor powers

Animal Speaker (-1)

  • Description: Can talk to animals. Must be able to see and hear those animals, and must speak aloud.
  • Skills Affected: Rapport. Intimidation.
  • Effects: Ability to speak with animals.

Hex Buffer (-1 or more)

  • Description: Something about you protects the technology you own, or technology you've personally handled.
  • Musts: If you ever take a spellcraft ability or Mana Static, you lose this power.
  • Skills Affected: Craftsmanship, Discipline.
  • Effects:
    • Personal Property Preservation. Technological items which you carry with you are resistant to hexing. When there is a chance of accidental or deliberate hexing, you may roll defence for your items. The bonus on this defence roll is the greater of your Craftsmanship or Discipline, -2. For accidental hexing, the difficulty is the hexing magician's Conviction -2. For deliberate hexing, the difficulty is equal to the spell's power. This only functions for items currently in your possession, though this includes such things as a laptop in a bag slung over your shoulder.
  • Potent Protection (-1 or more). Each refresh point put into this option grants you four 'protection' slots, much like a magician's 'enchanted item' slots. Spending one protection slot on an item shields it against hexing: even outside your presence, it gains the defence roll described in 'Personal Property Preservation', except without the -2 penalty. Putting additional protection slots into an item increases the defence bonus on a 1-for-1 basis. 'Protecting' an item requires personally handling, using, and perhaps tinkering with it. You can spend protection slots on an item after so handling it for a period of one week, or with a significant milestone. Removing protection from an item and shuffling those slots into other uses requires a significant milestone.

Minor Veils (-1)

  • Description: You are able to create small, personal veils. This power may be available to changelings who haven't attained the fullness of Glamours, or to descendants of an illusionist god like Loki, or any others who can justify such an ability.
  • Note: This ability is replaced by any deeper illusory ability, such as the Glamours power.
  • Skills Affected: Discipline, Deceit.
  • Effects:
    • Minor Veils. With a moment of concentration, you may draw a veil over something (not particularly large - maybe the size of a small, tight group of people), hiding it from sight and other means of detection. Use your Discipline or Deceit to oppose efforts to discover the veil. If the veil is discovered, it isn't necessarily pierced - but the discoverer can tell that it's there and that it's wrong.

Plant Empathy (-1)

  • Description: Creatures with a bond with nature can take it to the level of communication with plants. Such communication is not quite true speech, but impressions of the world around them.
  • Skills Affected: Craftsmanship
  • Effects:
    • Plant Speech: You can perform an assessment action on the history of a given plant, given time to 'converse'. This is much like Psychometry's 'Echoes of the Past' trapping (Your Story, p1723), but limited to plant life, and rolled using Craftsmanship.
    • Green Thumb: Being able to communicate with plants gives you a better idea of their condition, needs, and any problems. As such, you get +2 to Craftsmanship rolls involving plants and gardening.

Sleepless (-1)

  • Description: You don't need to sleep.
  • Skills Affected: Endurance.
  • Effects:
    • Sleepless. You don't need to sleep, at all. You take no penalty for lack of rest. However, you still can sleep (perchance to dream) if you choose to.
    • Truly Sleepless (-1). For one extra refresh point, you cannot sleep. Not only don't you take penalties, but nothing can make you lose consciousness. Any 'knocked out' or 'asleep' result instead becomes something like 'beaten into paralysis'.
    • Function of Recovery (+varies). If you have Inhuman Recovery, this power is contained within the Catch. (For example: Inhuman Recovery (-2) and Sleepless (-1), with a +2 Catch, will only cost you one refresh point total.) If you have Supernatural or better Recovery, this power is one refresh point cheaper (and thus, free without the Truly Sleepless extra).

Snap Conjuration (-2)

  • Description: You can call up constructs of ectoplasm. Though they're fast, they're also temporary.
  • Skills Affected: Discipline.
  • Effects:
    • Creating an Item. With a thought (and an action), you can create a simple item - one with no moving parts. To determine the item's quality, roll Discipline. This action is effectively a maneuver, creating an aspect related to the item you make. This aspect is good for one tag, plus one for every three full shifts. When appropriate, one tag can be an 'invoke for effect' which gives you the item's effect for the duration of the scene, or until it's nullified or otherwise lost. (For example, you could spend a tag to turn your maneuver 'Ectoplasmic Sword' into a Weapon:2 benefit.)
    • You may only have 1 object summoned at a time, the moment a new object is summoned the previous object dissipates into ectoplasm and fades to nothing.
    • Each time you summon an object it costs 1 mental stress, much like casting a rote.

Superhuman Housekeeper (-2)

  • Description: Like a brownie, you have beyond-human ability to tidy and repair.
  • Skills Affected: Craftsmanship.
  • Effects:
    • World's Best Cleaning Service. Provided nobody observes you, the first time you tidy a location in a scene is completed in an instant. If you're observed, or if you've already insta-tidied once in the scene, instead reduce the time required by four increments.
    • Faerepairman. When repairing an object using Craftsmanship, the repairs are completed two time increments faster, and you get a +1 bonus. Also, you never take penalties for lacking an appropriate workshop.

Psychic powers

Death Sight (-0)

  • Description:If someone is fated to die within the next 24 hours, their face will be perceived as having a skull superimposed over it. This cannot be turned off. Sometimes fate can be changed, but more often than not the seer can't do a damned thing about it.
  • Musts: The character must have suitable thematic connection with death.

Prophetic Dreams (-0)

  • Description: You occasionally have dreams or nightmares which contain aspects of the future in them, but which require deciphering.
  • Skills Affected: Lore, Investigation
  • Effects:
    • Prophetic Dreams. GMs may elect to send you a cryptic dream and let you roll to unravel it for a small heads up about a plot.
    • Induced Dreaming. You may offer the GM a fate point and ask to have a dream. The fate point represents how you as a player are taking more control over the story by asking for a vision when the GM isn't actively giving one. If the GM accepts the fate point, they give you information (whether an aspect or just a detail); if they refuse, you keep the fate point.

Neuro-Feedback (-1)

  • Description: Attacking your mind is like punching a brick wall: people could hurt themselves.
  • Skills Affected: Discipline (Or others, if relevant stunt in use).
  • Effects:
    • Psychic Backlash. On a successful mental defense, you may sacrifice your next action for an immediate and automatically successful mental attack against your attacker, inverting the previous attack and defense rolls.

Psychic Empathy (-2)

  • Description: You have a semi-magical ("psychic") understanding of others' emotional states. This sensitivity is shallow enough to avoid violating the sanctity of their minds (and thus break the Second Law).
  • Skills Affected: Empathy.
  • Effects:
    • I Hear the Lie in Your Heart. +1 to defence against lies.
    • Emotion Intuition. You can make assessments and declarations related to a person's emotional state using your Empathy skill. Such rolls are made at +1. Others defend against these with Deceit or Rapport.
    • Psychic-Assisted Read. Your first attempt to assess someone's aspects (with the Reading People trapping) takes less than a minute of interaction, followed by 'a few minutes', '15 minutes', and so on for further attempts.
    • Mind-Dar. You sense where people are feeling. You can use Empathy instead of Alertness/Investigation to detect the presence and location of thinking beings.

Shapeshifting powers

Gaseous Form (-3) (amendment)

In the light of a power we houseruled, this power has an extra effect.

  • Effects:
    • Liquid Transformation. In lieu of transforming into your full gaseous form, you can instead transform into a liquid form. This uses the same rules as Liquid Form (-2). Transforming from solid to liquid, liquid to gas, gas to liquid, or gas to solid, is a supplemental action.

Liquid Form (-2)

  • Description: Some creatures, such as naiad faeries or Alex Mack, are able to take on a liquid form, allowing them to flow through spaces that a solid body could not.
  • Note: This ability is replaced by Gaseous Form.
  • Effects:
    • Liquid Transformation. You may transform into a liquid pool. In liquid form, you set aside all ability to physically act in exchange for the Physical Immunity ability with a Catch of any of your normal weaknesses, if you have any, plus the vulnerabilities that a pool of water might have; the ability to crawl along surfaces similarly to the Spider Walk power; and a limited form of the Insubstantial effect of Spirit Form. The only real actions available to you are movement and maneuvers: you cannot attack or block while in this form. It takes a whole exchange to make the transformation.
      While in this form, you're potentially vulnerable to things that can affect a liquid, such as being captured in a bottle or soaked in a sponge or disrupted by mixing with other liquids. You may be able to ignore some border values entirely by seeping through cracks under doors or windows, and so on, but you'll be stopped by something that's watertight.

Clothing-Shifter (-1)

  • Description: You are able to conjure and manipulate ectoplasmic clothing.
  • Note: This ability comes standard with the True Shapeshifting power.
  • SKills Affected: Deceit.
  • Effects:
    • Ecto-Clothing. You can create clothing out of ectoplasm and shape it to your will. Any roll which has to do with these clothes (e.g. a maneuver for 'Impeccably Dressed', or defending against a Lore or Investigation roll to recognise the clothing's fakeness) is done with Deceit.
    • Never Caught With Your Pants Down. When you change form using other shapeshifting powers, you can meld your clothing into your new form, and then bring it back when you return to humanoid form.

Shapeshifter's Mystique (-2)

  • Description: You can shapeshift into a number of humanoid forms.
  • Musts: If you ever take Fluid Shapeshifting or True Shapeshifting, it replaces this power.
  • Effects:
    • Skill Shuffle: As with the skill-shuffling effect of the same name under the Beast Change power (Your Story page 174), only with multiple different configurations to suit the form you take.
    • Thousand Faces: You can take on different humanoid forms, most often ones which still look convincingly human. Deceit rolls to support the disguise are done with no bonus.
  • Users of this power should be familiar with Dark Spire's Shapeshifting Rules.

Animorphism (-2)

  • Description: You can shapeshift into different beasts.
  • Musts: If you ever take Fluid Shapeshifting or True Shapeshifting, it replaces this power.
  • Effects:
    • Skill Shuffle: As with the skill-shuffling effect of the same name under the Beast Change power (Your Story page 174), only with multiple different configurations to suit the form you take.
    • Beast Forms: You can take on different animal forms, as long as the animal exists in nature: you can't mimic a mythical beast like a unicorn, but you can mimic a regular horse. Deceit rolls to support the disguise are done with no bonus.
  • Users of this power should be familiar with Dark Spire's Shapeshifting Rules.

Fluid Shapeshifting (-3)

  • Description: You can shapeshift into a multitude of animate beings.
  • Musts: If you ever take True Shapeshifting, it replaces this power.
  • Effects:
    • Skill Shuffle: As with the skill-shuffling effect of the same name under the Beast Change power (Your Story page 174), only with multiple different configurations to suit the form you take.
    • Multi-Form: You may take on nearly any humanoid or beastly form, including beastly forms mimicking the mythological and those you invent for yourself. Deceit rolls to support the disguise are done at +2.
  • Users of this power should be familiar with Dark Spire's Shapeshifting Rules.

Talky Animal (-1)

  • Description: You are able to speak while in animal form.
  • Note: You may use form points (from Modular Abilities) to take this power in individual forms. For example, you could have a 'speaking cat' form, but also a non-verbal tiger form.
  • Note 2: This power requires justification. Your animal form must either natively have an appropriate vocal system, or your shapeshifting must be flexible enough to give it one. (An innate werewolf, for instance, would have trouble, as the power is usually only to shift between fully-human and fully-wolf forms.)
  • Note 3: This ability comes standard with the True Shapeshifting power.
  • Skills Affected: Most social skills.
  • Effects:
    • Doctor Do-It-Myself. Even while an animal, you can speak! This allows fully clear communication and use of social skills regardless of shape.

True Faith powers

Divine Visions (0)

  • Description: There have been many people throughout time that have claimed to receive visions from a higher power. The visions are always related to the battle between Good and Evil and, unless dealing with someone or something truly horrific such as a serial killer as monstrous as Dahmer, they are almost exclusively related to the supernatural evils of the world. Of course, this means they are often terrible and terrifying things to bear witness to. They become burned into the prophet's mind, never to be forgotten. If all of this wasn't bad enough, they also cause blinding headaches.
  • Musts: The character must already have the Guide My Hand power, which this power builds upon. The character must also take an aspect referencing the divine visions. While this may be as simple as just naming an aspect 'Divine Visions', players are free to customise in such a way as to reflect the other ways the visions can and have affected the character.
  • Effects:
    • Timmy Fell Down The Well. Sometimes, the visions are clear, distinct, and show enough to lead the players to where something evil is going to happen either right that moment, or very, very soon. This tends to come with a bit more information than the 'semi-conscious awareness' of Guide My Hand.
    • Glimpse the Future. More often, the visions are confusing, only giving the player hints about what's being planned by Team Evil. With work, it could be deciphered and thus give them an advantage in the battles to come.
    • Prayer for Wisdom. You may offer the GM a fate point and ask to have a vision. The fate point represents how you as a player are taking more control over the story by asking for a vision when the GM isn't actively giving one. If the GM accepts the fate point, they give you information (whether an aspect or just a detail); if they refuse, you keep the fate point.

Holy Touch (-1) (amendment)

  • This power, as well as the effects described on Your Story page 188, has an additional effect on Dark Spires.
    • Battle Blessings. You can bless a weapon (or a man's fists) before going into battle. Doing so is a Conviction action of Good (+3) difficulty. Blessing a weapon gives it the 'Blessed' aspect for the duration of one scene. For free, this aspect allows it to satisfy the Catch of monsters vulnerable to 'holy stuff'. It also works like a maneuver aspect in other respects: there is one free tag, and it can be invoked for fate points afterwards. This can be done for their own weapons and for others'.

When the Sheep Roars (-2)

  • Description: Typically this power takes on some sort of holy bent with an amount of bright, shimmering light or glowing cross outlines.
  • Effects: A protective shield of faith is created and used to block the attacks of enemies as they strike at your allies.
    • Save Your Friend. You can use your Conviction skill to place a block around a specific person being attacked in your zone or an adjacent zone. Conviction must be rolled every turn to keep this block up around your chosen ally.
    • Save All Your Friends. By spending a fate point, you can instead spread the protection to all allies and/or non-combatants in a single zone. Conviction must then be rolled every subsequent turn to keep this block up around your allies.
    • Applied exclusively to others.

Other powers

Energy Attack (specify) (-1)

  • Description: You are able to wield a special kind of attack in combat, dealing more damage than your own body alone.
  • Musts: You must specify what kind of attack you have. Is it a natural weapon (i.e. Claws)? Is it flame flowing from your hands? Electricity you conduct with each strike? You must also specify whether you use Fists or Weapons to attack with it.
  • Effects:
    • Energy Attack. Your attack counts as Weapon:2, rolled with either Fists or Weapons (see above), and usable within your zone. Even if you roll with Weapons, you cannot 'throw' the weapon, nor use it to parry. Your attack overcomes Catches which match its description.
    • Variable Descriptors (-1 or more). For each extra refresh point you put into this power, you can choose from two more kinds of attack each time you use this power. For instance, with one level of Variable Descriptors, you could attack with fire, ice, or lightning.

Energy Weapon (specify) (-2)

  • Description: You are able to conjure a weapon of some kind and use it in battle.
  • Musts: You must specify what kind of weapon it is. It could be an ectoplasmic axe, a scythe made of tangible cold, or so on and so forth.
  • Note: Some faithful types may be gifted with an Energy Weapon made of soulfire - in essence, a portion of their soul is transformed into a weapon against evil. These items are often called 'spirit swords'. Though they fulfil the Catch of any creature vulnerable to holy objects, they usually cannot take the Variable Descriptors option.
  • Effects:
    • Energy Weapon. You can conjure a weapon. It counts as Weapon:2, with attacks rolled with Weapons. It can be used to parry attacks, thrown a base of one zone, and allows the use of Weapons stunts. The first time you conjure it is free, but if you (for example) conjure it, throw it, and conjure it again in one exchange, you incur a -1 penalty on your main action. Your weapon satisfies Catches that suit its description.
    • Variable Form. For concepts that suit it, you can re-shape your Energy Weapon at will. Most of the time, this is purely cosmetic: whether it's an axe, a katana, a pair of daggers, or a bow, it still counts as a single Weapon:2 weapon which can be thrown one zone. If you want to say that the weapon change gives you some kind of advantage, then you must spend a fate point declaring that advantage as an aspect on the scene. (For instance, when outnumbered, you could spend a fate point to declare 'Two Swords, No Waiting', and then use that aspect to your advantage for the rest of the fight.)
    • Variable Descriptors (-1 or more). For each extra refresh point you put into this power, you can choose from two more kinds of attack each time you conjure the weapon. For instance, with one level of Variable Descriptors, you could attack with fire, ice, or lightning.
    • Empower Weapon (-1). When wielding a mundane object, you can power it up with your energy weapon. This allows it to bypass Catches appropriate to your weapon's descriptors. Take the higher Weapon rating of your power or the mundane object. (Example: If you empower a small knife, it comes up to Weapon:2. But if you empower a large battleaxe, it remains Weapon:3 while gaining the Catch bypass potential.) Though you can make a visible effect if you want (such as the classic 'flaming sword'), you can also prevent any visible effect. In that case, it takes a mystic perception Lore roll to notice any change to your weapon (contested by your Deceit or Discipline), but when appropriate, Alertness may notice oddities (such as a 'normal' knife leaving burn wounds).

Fortune's Gift (-2)

  • Description: You can manipulate the whimsical eddies of luck, alternately 'blessing' or 'cursing' those around you.
  • Skills Affected: Discipline
  • Effects:
    • Blessing of Fortune. You can roll Discipline to place aspects on people or objects, referring to enhanced luck. The default (but modifiable) difficulty is Mediocre, which gives you a fragile aspect. Higher results create sticky aspects, lasting for a scene, and every three shifts gives you an extra tag. Normally, these aspects last for a scene at most. If you are blessing someone or something in a certain endeavour, then the aspect is narrower, but can last longer: until the endeavour is either accomplished, abandoned, or definitively failed. You can make a blessing 'conditional', in which case the aspect will vanish if the character betrays a certain condition. (For example, a weapon might be blessed, but only if it is not turned against innocents or surrendering enemies.) A conditional blessing can last up to a week. Note that after the tags are used up, characters must use fate points to invoke this aspect.
    • Curses of Fortune. You can roll Discipline as an offensive maneuver, placing aspects on people or things, referring to damaged luck. The target defends with the better of Discipline or Conviction. A tie results in a fragile aspect, while shifts result in a sticky aspect, and every three shifts gives an extra tag. Normally, a sticky aspect lasts up to a scene. A conditional curse, such as 'you will suffer hardship unless you reconcile with your long-lost son', can last longer, depending on the roll: a week for 1 shift, and each further shift is one step up on the Time table. However, note that once tags are used up, characters must use fate points to invoke this aspect - and any time the aspect is invoked to the sufferer's detriment, they claim the fate point.

Weaver (-2)

  • Description: You are able to create webs, or similar means of restraint and battlefield control.
  • Skills Affected: Weapons.
  • Effects:
    • Web up the Block. You can use your webs (or other substance) to create blocks up to one zone away. You could put them across an escape route (blocking people from crossing that area), or web up someone's feet (keeping them from moving freely), and other such blocks. These blocks are rolled with Weapons, or Fists if you have an appropriate stunt.
    • High-Maneuverability Webs. You can also produce maneuvers, up to one zone away. You could web-yank someone's weapon to leave them Disarmed, or generally web someone to leave them Sticky in ways that don't work as a block. These maneuvers are rolled with Weapons, or Fists if you have an appropriate stunt. Defence is rolled with different skills, depending on the circumstances; Athletics and Might are common.