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[Let's Read] Rifts: A Wide Wide World of Weirdness

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Posts

  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Spd x 20 is the number of yards you can run in a minute. The English competition mile is 1600 yards. Divide by 4, that's 400 yards. 400 divided by 20 is 20. 20 Spd gives you a 4 minute mile, and is an average roll on 3d6+4d4.

    Juicers add 2d4x10 to that, so assuming they take running and roll the average all around, they've got 70 speed. That's 1400 yards a minute, or almost 60 miles an hour. Borgs top out (and bottom out, actually) at 50 Spd, meaning they can run a mile in a little over two minutes.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • ForarForar #432 Already prepping for Toronto Fan Expo!Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Show me a psychic character with access to ANY sensitive abilities, and I'lll show you someone who either has 6th sense, or is a dead wo/man walking.

    Oh yeah, my group went hard on the power level/gaming, but seriously, there were times where it was fairly common for more of the group to have that ability than not.

    Hell, I eventually took it as a way of indicating that the threats we faced were below our considerable character's abilities.

    GM: "The mercenary growls something unkind in a foreign language and his trigger finger twitches. Your sixth sense goes off". Which would mean that life threatening danger would ensue in the next 60 seconds.

    Me: "No, I really don't think it does."

    While a playful jab at the DM, we also eventually adapted it to instead of being a given addition to the start of every combat, it'd instead kick in if/when our character's life was actually on the line. Until then it was just another encounter.

  • OctoparrotOctoparrot Registered User
    edited January 2011
    Oh man the first thing I thought is that we should start a pbp game. But it would be really fast and loose with the rules. And we'll only humor probably 10% of the wordbooks. And free up how MDC and SDC affect each other.

    the GOP shouldn't give a rats ass about them since they won't vote for them. If someone won't vote for you they might as well not exist.
  • RaveBombRaveBomb Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Oh man, the memories. Never really played Rifts, but damn did I read the fluff.

    I tried DMing an one off Heroes Unlimited game once. One of the players rolled invulnerability for her power. That wasn't game breaking AT ALL. :?

    Keep posting. I'll keep reading, and laughing. <3

    I'm off to pirate more music, steal software, and knock down little old ladies, then later I'm going to cover my self in Yak's blood, and lay in a pentagram, while reading some Marxist literature and praying to a heathen god.

    tata
  • ForarForar #432 Already prepping for Toronto Fan Expo!Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Okay, to show the flip side of the insanity of the rules, here are some reasons why SDC/HP can actually be important:

    - Being Rifts and all, you can just as easily end up on another plane where your MDC gear becomes SDC, or you have to abandon it eventually, or any number of reasons (contrived or otherwise). End result is that sometimes you simply need to know how many fireballs it'll take to kill a Rifts character in PFRPG, or just how long it'll take for a Nightbane to wear you down in hand to hand, etc.

    - More contrivedness! Cities that don't allow people to walk around in armour! Bar fights! Getting caught in a fierce melee at night (sleeping in your armour caused penalties, as I recall, but I think that was introduced in a later book), or any other number of reasons (often at the GM's fiat) to scrap with something that won't (or at least isn't likely to pulp you in one hit!

    - Though to be fair, most Rifts characters were walking arsenals who probably had two pistols, a vibro knife and a mini missile launcher at hand, which leads us to something to be pondered/discovered down the road; who actually put to use the rare combination of MDC creatures that only dealt SDC damage? An odd answer to challenge characters who die if a supernatural creature so much as glances at them funny, but who deliver punishment like they have an M1 tank in each hand.

    - House rules! Damage that bleeds through MDC armour to deal ensuing SDC damage! My group had some house rules written up wherein 10-50% or so of MDC damage would bleed through as SDC damage as well, giving the possibility (unlikely as it was) for enough punishment to a suit of armour or power armour to incapacitate the pilot without having to scrap the armour entirely. That said, most Rifts characters with a few physical skills were probably packing 50-100+ sdc/hp by early/mid levels, and most body armour only had 50-100 mdc, so unless you went with a 1 to 1 conversion, most armour would still fail far before the wearers did anyway.

  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    MDC is just a dumb, broken system. The 'arguments' put forth by the designer(s) for including it ('IF YOU SHOOT A TANK WITH A PISTOL THE PISTOL WILL NOT DO ANY DAMAGE!!!') had been/have been dealt with much more elegantly & creatively.

    The 'solutions' to the problem of MDC power creep provided in the Compendiums is a joke.

    "Oh, well maybe just via GM fiat have people be unable to use their gear!"

    Yeah, that'd be real awesome - punish my players just because the game has bipolar disorder. Imagine if that were posed by WotC as a 'solution' to broken magic user classes in D&D 3.5 - just have them constantly lose their ability to use any spells and force them to whack things with their wooden sticks! Because that's totally the experience those players wanted to get out of their characters!

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    edited January 2011
    In all honesty, that was one of the solutions TSR suggested in the 90s. (See DM's Option: High-Level Campaigns.)

    huntresssig.jpg
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Dead Magic Zones!

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • ForarForar #432 Already prepping for Toronto Fan Expo!Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    The Ender wrote: »
    "Oh, well maybe just via GM fiat have people be unable to use their gear!"

    Yeah, that'd be real awesome - punish my players just because the game has bipolar disorder. Imagine if that were posed by WotC as a 'solution' to broken magic user classes in D&D 3.5 - just have them constantly lose their ability to use any spells and force them to whack things with their wooden sticks! Because that's totally the experience those players wanted to get out of their characters!

    Just so we're clear, that was written with tongue planted firmly in cheek.

    I can't recall more than a handful of actual sdc combat encounters that took place over half a decade of Rifts campaigns because it basically involved massive amounts of handwaving.

    I was simply trying to further highlight the absurdity of the system. Believe me, I agree that MDC was a mistake overall, and they just kept making it worse as the books went on. Damage reduction or a more reasonable ratio would've provided the same "high tech vs low tech" disparity while giving "regular" creatures a survival scale larger than "Alive and Fighting" and "a puff of vapour".

  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    edited January 2011
    so what are sdc and mdc?

    huntresssig.jpg
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Arivia wrote: »
    so what are sdc and mdc?
    A quick primer is probably due, huh?

    Ok, so here are how the various damage types break down in Palladium games;

    Hit Points represent physical damage to the body. This is what you lose when you get stabbed, shot with something that fires conventional ammunition, punched, etc. Your number of hit points is based on your Physical Endurance attribute, and increases at a rate of 1d6 per level. For reference, a typical gun does 2d6 (avg 7) hit point damage per shot. Only living beings have hit points, because everything else has;

    S.D.C., or Structural Damage Capacity, is a direct analog to hit points for objects, robots, etc, as well as especially tough humans (like player characters). S.D.C. functions on the same scale as hit points, meaning that something that deals a given number of hit point damage would deal the same damage in S.D.C. to a character or object that measured damage in that way instead. Most player characters will have some degree of S.D.C. protection, representing bruises and scrapes before the damage gets to their vitals (hit points), and this S.D.C. is subtracted first outside of special cases (like the abilities in Ninjas and Superspies that let you kick an opponents straight in the hit points). There's really no functional difference between S.D.C and Hit Points outside of corner cases like those mentioned. It's the same damage scale.

    M.D.C., or Mega Damage Capacity, is the realm that Rifts spends most of its time in. As evidenced by the superlative terminology, it operates on a much higher scale than S.D.C./Hit Points. One point of Mega Damage is equivalent to 100 points of Structural or Hit Point damage. Obviously, any interaction that involves Mega Damage weaponry against S.D.C./Hit Points structures, creatures or items is going to be a fairly short one involving an unhealthy amount of vaporized flesh. Most characters will wear armor, power armor, etc that provides M.D.C. level protection, or will take steps to give themselves "natural" M.D.C protection like a bionic body or telekinetic force field. If they don't they're basically just asking to be rerolled.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • HorseshoeHorseshoe Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    alright so to get an idea of the ballpark here...

    what would be the S.D.C. and/or M.D.C of, say:

    1) a car

    2) a large building

    3) a mountain

    4) a player character

    because i'm starting to get the idea that the player character is going to be able to take the most damage of those four

    dmsigsmallek3.jpg
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    A car will have like 200 S.D.C., or 2 M.D.C. A futuristic car made to withstand M.D.C. combat stresses would probably have 50 M.D.C.

    A large building would probably have anywhere from 2000 to 20000 S.D.C., or 20 to 200 M.D.C.

    A mountain would have as much as the GM was willing to give it to make it a bitch to cut through with freebie vehicle laser weapons.

    A PC will have anywhere from ~20 hit points and a handful of S.D.C. to hundreds of each. On top of which will be layered various protective gear that can run anywhere from about 15 M.D.C. (Brannaghan Armored Jacket) to 770 M.D.C. (Glitter Boy Power Armor). They can then put themselves inside a combat vehicle or robot, for another 300 to 2000 M.D.C.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • HorseshoeHorseshoe Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    glitter

    boy

    power

    armor

    ...

    fuck yes

    dmsigsmallek3.jpg
    chrishallett83
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    A conventional, modern car would have something in the ballpark of 250-300 S.D.C:

    rifts-example.png

    It's hard to know what the author meant by 'souped-up'; presumably kitted out with some improvised armor plating & guns.


    All big structures in Rifts are pretty much on the MDC scale; mountain rock would be S.D.C. (1 ton of rock would probably be about 300 S.D.C. or so); player characters are extremely variable. Some of the tougher Dee Bees (Dimensional Beings) have a few hundred S.D.C., humans have a laughable amount (though, hilariously, S.D.C. weapons deal so little damage that even most human player characters can sustain multiple gunshot wounds & grenade explosions without worry).

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    It's also important to note that S.D.C. to M.D.C. is not a straight-up conversion; if you shoot someone wearing even 1 M.D.C. worth of protection with an old WWII machine gun for perhaps thousands of points of S.D.C. damage, guess what? You inflict zero damage.

    The only exception to this is when using stuff like old S.D.C. missiles.

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    edited January 2011
    So MDC is an extra damage scale for the sake of having an extra damage scale. Why am I not surprised.

    huntresssig.jpg
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Yes, tons of S.D.C. might still not inflict a single M.D. point of damage.

    It has to be one projectile/explosion/effect. So burst weapons that deal more than 100 S.D.C. still wouldn't deal mega damage.

    It's not a matter of gameplay efficiency in damage calculation, it's two completely different scales of combat.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Horseshoe wrote: »
    glitter

    boy

    power

    armor

    ...

    fuck yes
    It is everything you've ever hoped it would be, too.

    I'm really looking forward to the entry on glitter boys.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
    Elvenshae
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    OptimusZed wrote: »
    Horseshoe wrote: »
    glitter

    boy

    power

    armor

    ...

    fuck yes
    It is everything you've ever hoped it would be, too.

    I'm really looking forward to the entry on glitter boys.
    Spoiler:

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
    Elvenshae
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Arivia wrote: »
    So MDC is an extra damage scale for the sake of having an extra damage scale. Why am I not surprised.

    To be fair, it's not quite that arbitrary; Siembieda makes it pretty clear through his little editorial notes that he'd put a lot of thought into the entire M.D.C. scale, and that he had a lucid design goal in mind (create a huge, fundamental difference between Rifts era stuff and Pre-Rifts era stuff). Arguably, he even met that goal - he just met it in sloppy way.

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • HorseshoeHorseshoe Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    i like how in the entries there are words that sound like they just made them up on the fly that are actual things in the game

    probably not in the book you are reading at the time, but still

    dmsigsmallek3.jpg
  • AegofAegof Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    This thread makes me pretty glad I stayed away from tabletop RPGs until 4e.

    I'm providing ambience.
  • XagarathXagarath Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    GoodOmens wrote: »
    Ah, the foolishness of youth. I remember thinking that Rifts was the coolest fucking game EVAR!

    Of course, I also had, and enjoyed, a copy of World of Synnibar. Also Kult. And even, God help me, HOL. Look it up some time.

    Never actually played any of these, mind you.

    Hang on, hang on.

    HOL did exactly what it set out to do. You can't criticise it for that.

    Aegof wrote: »
    This thread makes me pretty glad I stayed away from tabletop RPGs until 4e.
    There were much more streamlined, flexible common-sense systems than D&D 4E (not that there's anything wrong with 4E per se, but it's not the be and end all of roleplaying) available from the late 70s onwards, once Runequest and its descendants came along (Call of Cthulhu et al). Don't assume Rifts/Rolemaster to be representative of the history of the hobby.

  • RingoRingo Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Aegof wrote: »
    This thread makes me pretty glad I stayed away from tabletop RPGs until 4e.

    GURPS took everything you hated about RPG manuals and killed it with a shovel

    at least, that was how I remember it

    I haven't seen a GURPS book in a decade at least

    ceres wrote: »
    I'm just going to go ahead and lock this thread before I feel any worse about humanity.
    AUGMENTOS - Edcrab's Exigency RPG
  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    edited January 2011
    Horseshoe wrote: »
    i like how in the entries there are words that sound like they just made them up on the fly that are actual things in the game

    probably not in the book you are reading at the time, but still

    it's not hard to do that

    I slipped into full out dictionary mode when I was writing stuff for Mage recently

    huntresssig.jpg
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Hm. So, with the terribly convoluted Character Creation chapter out of the way, I wonder what section is next...?

    rifts-skills.png

    Oh

    Oh God


    Zed, why are you coating the end of that revolver in peanut butter?

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Aegof wrote: »
    This thread makes me pretty glad I stayed away from tabletop RPGs until 4e.

    As much venom as I'll spew at Rifts, there's one quality to it that I think very, very few people could deny: these damn books absolutely demand to be played with. I don't think the same could be said for 4th Edition - certainly not in the same way. Rifts makes you wish so hard that it's mechanics weren't so shitty, because you want to play it so damn bad.

    It's like Siembieda went into a Toys R Us, stole all of the coolest action figures he could find, and crammed them all into an RPG. He knew exactly what got kids like me revved-up.


    Even as we're writing these criticisms of the game, I can't hep but think, "Hey, y'know... maybe we could give it one more go. We could make it work this time,"

    I'm just lucky that that voice is not nearly as loud anymore as the one that says, "Hey, moron - remember the last time you tried to run a Rifts campaign?"

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
    Elvenshae
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    The Ender wrote: »
    Even as we're writing these criticisms of the game, I can't hep but think, "Hey, y'know... maybe we could give it one more go. We could make it work this time,"

    I'm just lucky that that voice is not nearly as loud anymore as the one that says, "Hey, moron - remember the last time you tried to run a Rifts campaign?"
    This feeling is the genesis of the psychotic ex metaphor I used in the first post.

    It really is like that old girlfriend who was completely insane and yet undeniably alluring.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    OptimusZed wrote: »
    The Ender wrote: »
    Even as we're writing these criticisms of the game, I can't hep but think, "Hey, y'know... maybe we could give it one more go. We could make it work this time,"

    I'm just lucky that that voice is not nearly as loud anymore as the one that says, "Hey, moron - remember the last time you tried to run a Rifts campaign?"
    This feeling is the genesis of the psychotic ex metaphor I used in the first post.

    It really is like that old girlfriend who was completely insane and yet undeniably alluring.

    I had such a great idea:

    It was going to be a high tech game of piracy. The players would start the game by assaulting & taking over command of a modified Death's Head transport, then go around engaging in pillage, hijinks and perhaps even some heroism. It would give the group a chance to go romp around in whatever world book settings they wanted, snatch-up all kinds of cool gear, dink around with iconic Rifts NPCs, etc.


    It last 4 encounters. We wrapped-up the session, lied to each other that we'd get back to it sometime later, and conveniently 'forgot' about it.

    I've still got the wrinkled character sheets & campaign hooks tucked into Compendium II.

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
    Elvenshae
  • ForarForar #432 Already prepping for Toronto Fan Expo!Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    ... Zed, when we get to Power Armour, I'm afraid I may just have to pull out an article of my own.

    Maybe Psionics too, but I'll probably just save that for some lengthy ranting when we get to the powers and PCCs.

    Glitterboys were quaint, highly armoured and hit like trucks, but they were one trick ponys.

    If you want a walking arsenal, you had to go out of the Americas...

    Okay, America. South America had batshit crazy power creep. Fucking Carella.

  • HorseshoeHorseshoe Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    when you combine the word "glitterboys" with "ponies"

    well my brian can only conjure the image of a dude in power armor

    riding a flourescent unicorn/pegasus with a picture of a nuclear warhead on its butt

    and i have a feeling

    that this would work in rifts just fine

    dmsigsmallek3.jpg
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Horseshoe wrote: »
    when you combine the word "glitterboys" with "ponies"

    well my brian can only conjure the image of a dude in power armor

    riding a flourescent unicorn/pegasus with a picture of a nuclear warhead on its butt

    and i have a feeling

    that this would work in rifts just fine

    That's... a kinda-sorta accurate mental image to have of the Five Horsemen's gestalt form, from the Africa world book.

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • HorseshoeHorseshoe Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    does the extra horseman make it MORE apocalyptic?

    dmsigsmallek3.jpg
    psolms
  • chiasaur11chiasaur11 Never doubt a raccoon. Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Is he KAOS or Grievous Bodily Harm?

    Inquiring minds want to know!

    2MyOx.png
  • The EnderThe Ender Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Well, there's the standard four (Pestilence, War, Famine, Death) and then they can all merge into a 'fifth' horseman that shares the abilities of each of the four.

    TOG Solid wrote:
    If that guy wasn't white he would have gotten popped by so many tasers simultaneously that Marvel could use that as the new origin for Electro.
  • GoodOmensGoodOmens Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    So Voltron WAS in the Bible! My Sunday school teacher lied to me.

    steam_sig.png
    IOS Game Center ID: Isotope-X
    Erich ZahnElvenshae
  • RaveBombRaveBomb Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    chiasaur11 wrote: »
    Is he KAOS or Grievous Bodily Harm?

    Inquiring minds want to know!

    TP & NG FTW! You owe me a new monitor. :rotate: <3

    I'm off to pirate more music, steal software, and knock down little old ladies, then later I'm going to cover my self in Yak's blood, and lay in a pentagram, while reading some Marxist literature and praying to a heathen god.

    tata
  • RiusRius Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    RaveBomb wrote: »
    chiasaur11 wrote: »
    Is he KAOS or Grievous Bodily Harm?

    Inquiring minds want to know!

    TP & NG FTW! You owe me a new monitor. :rotate: <3

    I caught this too, lol.

    chrishallett83
  • RiusRius Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Horseshoe wrote: »
    does the extra horseman make it MORE apocalyptic?

    The End of Days; Now with 25% more Apocalypse!

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