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Old 05-10-2021, 08:00 AM   #1
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Default Escapology Talent

I mooted this for Hexagram, but Steve was unsure whether he wanted to go there or not, so I'm sharing this through House Rules instead. I've got a decent collection of House Rules going and will probably share a collated version on Shadekeep if anyone is interested. It'll have stuff like my Demihuman guidelines as well. (Radiation rules are already available as a download.) Anyway, hope you enjoy this!

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The Escape Artist: Adding Escapology to TFT

Dragor looked at the bound human. The human smiled back. Dragor didn’t like that smile. There was mischief in it. Maybe later he’d prod the human in the guts with his mace. The human wouldn’t smile then. Dragor himself smiled as he turned his back on the human for a moment. He hardly had time to react to the clink of falling manacles before something struck him unconscious. He awoke to his captain bellowing at him for letting the human escape.

Escapology is the set of skills that allows one to extricate themself from bonds, cages, traps, and prisons. This is especially useful for adventurers who find themselves in trouble, held captive by mercenaries or slavers or evil wizards. With the Escapology talent one has an improved chance of gaining their freedom, and thence to fight or flee.

Escapology is a complex mundane talent, in essence a professional skill like astrology, masonry, or calligraphy. Like all mundane talents it is available at IQ 8. It cost 3 IQ points to purchase, and one must learn it from a seasoned escapist. These are often found in the Thieves Guild, otherwise one will need to seek such a master out. Escapology also has a minimum DX requirement of 12. It takes a year of training to obtain all the skills needed to be an escapist, though at the GM’s discretion a player starting with this skill can be presumed to have undergone the necessary training.

There are some tangible benefits to the escapology talent, all of which are related to escaping from bonds and breaking out of captivity.

When an escapist is manacled, bound, or otherwise constrained, they get a roll to escape these bonds. The difficulty of the bonds are determined by the GM, and the roll is against the escapist’s DX. Simple manacles might be 3/DX, whereas more involved constraints have a higher difficulty. An escapist whole fails a roll can try again on another turn, but critical failure means they cannot escape their current bonds. Characters without the escapology talent do not get these rolls.

Escapology also provides a benefit against magical bonds. An escapist rolls one less die when trying to escape from a Rope or Giant Rope spell.

Finally, if the escapist also has the Locksmith talent, they roll one fewer die when picking locks.

It can be useful to have an escapist in the party when everyone is taken captive or if boisterous party members tend to frequently end up in jail. Just be sure you can trust the escapist, as they are slippery characters.
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