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Old 01-08-2021, 11:16 AM   #1
maximara
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Default Strange Undead

Rebuilding some of the undead templates using Intact Corpse (Zombies) as the baseline produced some really weird results.

Mummified Undead (Fantasy and Horror) for example becomes this:

Advantages: Intact Corpse [40]; Injury Tolerance (No Brain, No Vitals) [10]; No Supernatural Features (No Body Heat, No Pulse, Pallor) [20]; No Fragile (Unnatural) [50]; No Unhealing (Total) [30] [150]

Disadvantages: Disadvantages Appearance (Monstrous; Universal, +25%) [-25]; Fragile (Combustible) [-5]; No Doesn't Sleep [-20]; Social Stigma (Dead) [-20]; [-70]

Features Affected as Dead; No Fatigue; Sterile; Will become Rotting Undead

This show the somewhat bizarre situation that the official version of Mummified Undead has body heat, a pulse, and is able to heal "naturally".

I suspect this is a case of 'forgot about that' but Mummified Corpse (also in Zombies) also has No Supernatural Features (No Body Heat, No Pulse, Pallor) [20] if you use Intact Corpse as the baseline so is this something mummies are supposed to have or is it an 'oops'?
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Old 01-08-2021, 11:24 AM   #2
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Default Re: Strange Undead

You can't claim Supernatural Features if you're obviously supernatural, like a walking withered corpse. Undead like that replace Supernatural Features (No Body Heat, No Pulse, Pallor) [-20] with Appearance (Monstrous; Universal, +25%) [-25]. This is spelled out under Supernatural Features (Zombies, p. 64).

It isn't a disadvantage in itself to be cold, pale, and have no pulse. It's a disadvantage to look like you should be warm, flushed with blood, and have a pulse . . . and not to have those features. That is, it's the contrast between "looks like a human, not a monster" and "is a monster" that's worth points. Appearance (Monstrous) means you look like a monster anyway, so nobody is going to expect you to have normal human traits in the first place.

It's the same reason why skin-covered androids with weird fixed grins often have worse disadvantages than metal death-bots. The former is "What the heck is that?"; the latter is, "Huh, a machine."
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Old 01-08-2021, 12:31 PM   #3
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Default Re: Strange Undead

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
You can't claim Supernatural Features if you're obviously supernatural, like a walking withered corpse. Undead like that replace Supernatural Features (No Body Heat, No Pulse, Pallor) [-20] with Appearance (Monstrous; Universal, +25%) [-25]. This is spelled out under Supernatural Features (Zombies, p. 64).

It isn't a disadvantage in itself to be cold, pale, and have no pulse. It's a disadvantage to look like you should be warm, flushed with blood, and have a pulse . . . and not to have those features. That is, it's the contrast between "looks like a human, not a monster" and "is a monster" that's worth points. Appearance (Monstrous) means you look like a monster anyway, so nobody is going to expect you to have normal human traits in the first place.

It's the same reason why skin-covered androids with weird fixed grins often have worse disadvantages than metal death-bots. The former is "What the heck is that?"; the latter is, "Huh, a machine."
Perhaps it is because I keep thinking of Boris Karloff in the 1932 Mummy where he "passed" for a normal person for most of the picture, or the Boris Karloff comic book story where where a character intends to scare someone to death by pretending to be the mummy they just discovered but the real mummy shows up and is shot to "death" and it isn't until they remove the bandages that find that out.

Then there is the handful of Scooby Doo cartoons where the mummy is really some guy in a mask (that in a later one it was "real" though in one Shaggy is so clueless that he says their "waiter" just got back from a bad accident). Heck, in "Scooby Doo, Where Are You! - Scooby-Doo and a Mummy, Too" it isn't what the mummy looks like that has everyone frighted it is that he supposedly can turn people to stone.

Even in the movies where the mummy is a tomb guardian under the control of the main bad guy it doesn't exactly have Appearance (Monstrous; Universal, +25%) [-25] perhaps Hideous, Universal or Ugly, Universal. Perhaps it is just me but I think Pinhead and company when I read Appearance (Monstrous; Universal).
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Old 01-08-2021, 12:37 PM   #4
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Default Re: Strange Undead

Honestly, Supernatural Features should not exist as a separate disadvantage, it should just be a modifier on Secret, because most of its value comes from 'makes it easier to detect that you are something supernatural', which is only important if being supernatural is a secret.
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Old 01-08-2021, 01:42 PM   #5
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Default Re: Strange Undead

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Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
Honestly, Supernatural Features should not exist as a separate disadvantage, it should just be a modifier on Secret, because most of its value comes from 'makes it easier to detect that you are something supernatural', which is only important if being supernatural is a secret.
They are basically two things bundled together

1) Reputation -1 (Only people who notice <trait>, -?%)
2) My-Secret-is-Hard-to-Hide.

Since a Secret when revealed functions as twice its value in disadvantages the Supernatural Features are essentially an increased chance to (temporarily, unless it goes "public") suffer revealed (2x value of secret in points) secret disadvantage.

F.ex. I figure a vampire with...
Supernatural Features (No Body Heat; No Pulse; Pallor, temporary) [-15]
Secret (Vampire) [-30] // Turns into Social Stigma: Monster [-20], and other relevant traits such as Enemy Hunter (Vampire Hunters, other vampires, etc.), Enemy Watcher (Press, etc.) total of up to -60 points based on how the secret got out.

If someone notices all the vampire's traits they get -4 to Reactions. If they identify the vampire they get another -4 to Reaction from Social Stigma Monster, and might either "become" an enemy of the vampire (more relevant on a bad reaction), or turn someone else into an enemy of the vampire when the information reaches them.

Until the vampire manages to persuade, pay off, or murder witnesses the vampire will suffer up to 60 points of disadvantages (depending on how severely the secret got exposed).

For obvious reasons I would not let someone pick those traits without a Secret-aspect to them, nor have way more Supernatural Feature-traits than the Secret is worth.

If someone just looks like an undead human and make no effort to hide it I'd just slap a Social Stigma, lowered appearance, or other reaction -1 [-5/level] until people react as negatively as they should. An obviously undead femme-fatale vampire might just have "Appearance: Ugly" since people overall react negatively to her appearance. If you feel this ruins your idea of a 'sexy, but openly undead vampire' you could split the reaction: Appearance basically costs 4 points per level, or 2 points if only one gender, so if you want her to still be sexually attractive to men* you could slap +4 Reaction from men [8 points] to that, for a grand total appearance cost of [0 points]. -2 Reaction from women. +2 from men. Then just give her a high skill in Sex Appeal.

*Read men/woman as short form of: 'people attracted/not attracted to that gender'.

Edit: Supernatural Features IS a strange disadvantage though, and I too think it should be split up. It also tends to mislead (especially new) GMs and players into making characters with fifty dozen Supernatural Features for huge amount of (free?) character points. Supernatural Feature (All of them), Social Stigma (Dead), Appearance (Ugly), Reputation (Troublemaker) 2 [-10], ... for some total penalty of -20 or whatever. About 100 points for disadvantages though buy stuff for, and the people at the table probably don't even remember that the stacking Reaction Modifiers for the supernatural features are a thing.
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