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[Rebel Script ⍺] Midnight Hunt - The Hand of Oblivion

Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
Welcome friend, to the Midnight Hunt.

I’m in the process of creating a simplistic system to roleplay in, and I invite you to discuss it with me awhile, then listen to my pitch for our next game.

The current system reference wiki: This will be updated and expanded daily.

The current character playbook: I will be creating a much more artist version as soon as I can.

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Posts

  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    edited February 14
    So what’s the deal with this?
    Basically, this system is all the stuff I’ve grown to love over my decades of collaborative story telling. Only roll if it matters. Roll as many dice as you can convince me is right. Take big risks for big rewards. Rebel Script is a game of conversation, permissions, and ultimately word play. If you can convincingly roll a certain aspect, do it.

    I must make character now!
    No, don’t. We build them as we play, rather than defining them from the start. Come up with an idea and roll with it, what they end up as will depend on how they organically grow, not by their class. They don’t have a class.

    When we start, you’ll have a name, description and an aspect. That’s it.

    Why is it any good to play?
    Up front, this is just one game of many. It’s not the world’s greatest roleplaying game tee em. What is has is a snowball effect of trouble, danger and consequence that you the player have a huge say in. You’ll often get yourself into and out of problems by taking ever increasing risks. I’m also trying to emulate the feeling of a cool if silly series or movie you love, with high action because there are less rules, not in spite of it. If you think you can reasonably do it within the established fiction, do it. I want it to feel like how a scene from an action movie looks like, rather than pushing pieces around a largely 2D board.

    What exactly is the setting?
    I’ll get to my pitch once we’ve worked out who’s in, but in basic terms: At midnight the world stands still in a frozen moment, and only you and the nightmares out to kill and worse sneak into the world. You are the first, last and only line of defence against them. You’re hunters.

    Where is my HP?
    You don’t have any. What you get instead is conditions, which you act out, as it forces you to tackle challenges with new limitations. You have condition clocks next to each condition. Once filled, you gain a permanent debility. Each clock has a different number of segments, and it’s your choice which one you put your condition next to. Obviously, you can cure any condition before it goes too far, too.

    So I can’t die?
    Yeah, when it makes sense. When you’ve too many scars, and can’t go on, perhaps. Instead you might retire, become lost, even return later to save the day. It might seem softer than HP, but you’ll feel each harm done to you far more in this system than losing numbers, which is more dramatic to me. Trust me, a character can still die.

    Endless_Serpents on
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    edited February 14
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    Endless_Serpents on
  • AustinP0027AustinP0027 Registered User regular
    Looked at the aspects and as usual I have multiple that I could play.

    I have Oak over in Paku's game, so want to avoid Strong/Tough. I'm thinking maybe Quick or Empathetic as options, but I'm curious what others are thinking. I haven't built a character idea in my head for this yet so I kind of want to play off of what others are pulling together.

  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    @AustinP0027
    For now, I’m glad you’re choosing from that list. As your character gains advancements, be aware all they are is a word we’re using to give you permission to add a die to a roll. Bern might be Superstitious and Old, for example.
    As Bern fights a ghost, Superstitious might get him a die. When he convinces someone he’s harmless, he’d leverage being old.

    It’s absolutely part of the game that I pitch you the idea, and then you all create a band of character by riffing off each other. It’s a good thing you’ve nothing set in stone.

    Once everyone has signed on the line I will get into the pitch.

  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    edited February 14
    I'm thinking someone named "Lynch" (male or female), who dresses like an Old Thyme Highwayman, and is "Meticulous"

    My natural inclination is to give them a Grandmother and tragic backstory at this point, but I am stopping myself
    hz0yxly707ip.png

    mrpaku on
    joshgotroAustinP0027
  • joshgotrojoshgotro Almost Indiana Registered User regular
    edited February 14
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    Tomos
    Aspects wise I'm thinking academic/tough

    joshgotro on
    does it?
    mrpakuAustinP0027
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Here we go, I see we’re revving up.

    Glad to have you all so far.

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  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    The Pitch
    The year is 1810. The war ended one year ago today, and Ördeal lost. The country is currently under occupation by the Langleich forces, with no end in sight. Tracks are being cut through the land, bringing with them the first steam trains from beyond the border. Ördeal’s own breakthrough, the wireless transmitter, brings news and song across a once isolated land.

    You are hunters, even now, perhaps especially now. Each night, at midnight, time as others know it ceases, and the midnight hours begin. Only you can perceive it, exist in it, only you can stand against the nightmares that prowl through the cracks in time and into your world.

    It is time to join the hunt.

    Did you serve in the war, or were you too young? (Or too smart, you might say)

    What do you do by day?

    Why must you hunt the nightmares?

    Think about, but don’t tell us right now, what went down the first time you entered the midnight hours and saw a nightmare.



    Now I’ve told you what I want to run, tell me what you want to see, what you’re not into, and if you’d like your character to know another, or start their hunt alone.



    Character Creation in Midnight Hunt
    First, get a blank playbook.

    Choose a name. It doesn’t need to be your given name, or your full name. It’s what you go by.

    Describe in broad strokes what you look like, and what you tend to wear. You can say a little about yourself, but don’t reveal anything you can’t alter later. Leave gaps to be filled as they come into play.

    Choose an aspect. Just one.

    At any point during play, flashback to the first nightmare you ever saw (you needn’t have pursued it) and say how it affected you.

    Discuss and make notes on the character during the pitch, and play to find out more about them during the 1st episode.

    When you meet the requirements, take an advancement. In this way you’ll build out the character to fit your growing view of them and the story everyone begins to tell.



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    mrpakujoshgotroAustinP0027Cheeseliker
  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    Lynch lied about her age to join up with the war effort on behalf of Ordeal. She found the war a welcome respite from the Orphanage she’d grown up in.

    Lynch deserted and went into roving crime just before it all turned bad. Her days now consist of the following: Rob the Rich; Steal Supplies from Lanleich forces; Entrap Carriages; Run Cons; Flip Merchandise; Keep Your Head Down (Typical Highwaywoman-stuff).

    As to the Nightmares…first and foremost, Lynch seeks to protect those who aren’t able to protect themselves. As a very close second, she seeks to hurt and punish those who would harm innocents or the downtrodden

    Endless_SerpentsAustinP0027
  • joshgotrojoshgotro Almost Indiana Registered User regular
    43rd Ordealian Infantry.

    Tomos returned to university postwar to figure out what he saw/experienced that fateful night in the trenches. He no longer studies arts history.

    does it?
    mrpakuEndless_SerpentsAustinP0027
  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    I'm thinking Lynch may have been keeping a low profile, working as a Logistics Troop as part of Ordeal's Supply Train (until she disappeared one night). It's possible Tomos might recognize her from there, were they deployed to the same part of the fighting

  • joshgotrojoshgotro Almost Indiana Registered User regular
    I'm totally down for having a bond from the war front.

    does it?
    mrpaku
  • AustinP0027AustinP0027 Registered User regular
    Leopold was too young to join the war, no matter how often he tried to sneak away and join up. They always turned the skinny blonde haired youth away, often with a meaningless threat about him stopping his attempts, as well as an aside of wondering how he kept getting back.

    Leo, now on the doorstep of adulthood, works for the local businesses a a courier, dropping off parcels and product.

    Nightmares are new to his world but much like the soldiers he grew up idolizing, he wants to finally do his part.

    Going with Quick. Leo’s going to be the “kid” who couldn’t fight so thinks this is the next fight. Time will tell if that’s for glory or duty or something else

    mrpakujoshgotro
  • fadingathedgesfadingathedges Registered User regular
    edited February 15
    The writing was on the wall-if thinly scratched-when Emmett turned his coat and started taking coin from Langleich. But that's not why he did it.

    He had seen something . . . something that made horror and grit of the war fade to a pale grey, and rendered meaningless the simple differences of the color of a coat, or lay of a line on a map. Something was hunting us.

    Worse than seeing, he could almost smell them. Their wrongness. The warp of the world left in their wake. Through the dark woods across the countryside, and down the crooked alleys between the streets, they stalk. What could he do, but follow?


    Emmett is a bloodhound of sorts - a tracker, a bounty hunter, a mercenary. His empathy lets him sense and track Nightmares, to a degree. I think that They might not know that he / some folks can do this, but if one figured it out, It might suppress or counter this somehow. This is all just a flexible idea that I'm good with handling however you think is good.

    Emmett abandoned his country in its hour of need to answer the call of a darker threat. He's killed on both sides, and certainly has enemies on both sides: friends betrayed, occupiers who see him as a bootlicker, etc. But the decision gave him the freedom to move and do what he was driven to do, and he may have helped some folks along the way.

    It seems logical that Emmett could have found others who know about what he knows, and he sure as shit would take the help.

    Emmett is middle-aged and grizzled, with short cropped hair and beard. He dresses practically for his work: a long coat, a satchel of tools and supplies, a knife, a hatchet, a length of chain, and a heavy, single-shot pistol.

    fadingathedges on
    mrpakuEndless_SerpentsjoshgotroAustinP0027
  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    Fantastic choice, I am very much here for the "uneasy Post-War-Alliances in service to a Greater Good" subplot!

    joshgotro
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Evocative stuff one and all. If you’re happy to begin, we’ll start tonight. There’s always room for a late joiner, don’t worry.

  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Your eyelids flick back sharply. You rise, your body accustomed to the wrenching of time. It’s so tangible to you now, a sense as common to you as sight. The seconds are slowing on the clock. A bells ring out from a distant church, and then, nothing. Every breath in all the world but yours is silent.

    These are the midnight hours. Time outside time, where predators hunt their prey. Nightmares pull their false forms through the cracks of this world, and prowl the strange dark that hangs heavy over this city. Their alien hearts breed terrible fates. Those they choose to toy with are rarely to be seen again, and it is no blessing when their lives are spared.

    So you hunt nightmares, for it must be done.



    This is the city. It’ll grow as we define it.

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    It’s pitch dark out tonight as clouds pregnant with rain conceal the stars. The moon is nought but a faded glow. Wind whips across the cobbled streets, strong enough lift a hat from your head. This is a blessing, pushing the clouds along at such a pace occasional beams of twinkling light dance across the roofs before they are once again engulfed.

    Lynch and Tomos, you are in your shared hovel on Rosewater Lane, a partially ruined slum built out of a once wealthy ward. People would gossip about you, if there was anyone else living on the lane. A single white moth is held frozen in flight out on the landing, surreal, fragile, unknowing. You’re to meet Emmett, a veteran of the hunt even by your standards.

    Emmett and Leopold, you’re already out on foot, at the bank of the river Yearn that cuts through the city. Earlier today a murder was in the papers, only reported on due to the high profile nature of the crime. He was a famous actor from Langleich, visiting to entertain the occupying troops. You can see the thin rope circle held up by stakes used to block of the crime scene. The smell of earth and water fills the air, heavy and unyielding.

    Only Emmett knows Leopold.

    Emmett has a hunch the murder was unnatural.

    Will you mark 1 equipment to pull out a lantern you certainly have on you... or will you face the dark without it?

    What do you do?

    mrpaku
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Rules worth considering now.
    Weapons are just props. Just have whatever you want. When you describe how you use it to your advantage, it might get you a situational bonus. There’s no hard rule for them though.

    You’ve got 6 potential items. Mark a use to pull out anything story appropriate.

    Only roll if it challenges you, and would have consequences if things went awry. You’re competitive people, so for the most part you simply do it to the best of your ability. If you have an aspect that would help, you do it well.

    Always ask a question about the situation. I’ll always be honest, but I’ll be more tense the else you could rightly perceive. My answers are your eyes and ears, they cost you no time.

  • AustinP0027AustinP0027 Registered User regular
    How do you want questions? Just toss them in a spoiler after the post or ask them and mark somehow in the post itself?

    Also, just as a note to everyone, I'll mark a use to have Leo holding a lantern.

  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    edited February 15
    Toss ‘em in a spoiler if you want to, but I’ve realised a couple days ago that out-of-character stuff could be done by putting the sentence in italics.

    The wind whips by Leopold.

    In this way you can cut in and out of character without having to put it all at the bottom! Might be fun.

    Endless_Serpents on
    AustinP0027mrpaku
  • AustinP0027AustinP0027 Registered User regular
    Leo walks silently a few steps behind Emmett, holding the lantern high to shine light on their surroundings. Every few steps he would subconsciously pause to keep from catching up with the older man, a habit he had been able to pick up over time as he had adjusted to the fact that he walked faster than most everyone else. A minor thing, but it avoided uncomfortable situations, the young man had found.

    He had heard of the murder as he was on his delivery route, and had gone to find Emmett after his job was done to see if it was something they were going to need to take a look at. Which, of course, led them here, overlooking the river. Leo squinted his eyes, taking in their surroundings.

    What do I see here?
    What does the general area look like?

    mrpaku
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    edited February 15
    Leo

    There’s still a stain of blood on the earth, but it’s not some terrible artery splatter. It would have been a slow pooling of blood, now just a mark. There’s two smoothed off dips in the earth, maybe the actor was on his knees. There a bunch of boot prints all around. Some are from the police, other’s are from soldiers. They’re probably ruined a lot of what you could have took in.

    The river keeps flowing. Water is a fascinating thing, you wish you knew how all this worked. The river bank is covered in short grass and tall reeds, though the scene of the crime breaks this. It’s just a patch rich dark dirt. Across the river there’s rows of pretty houses and a few larger buildings. That’s Foxglove Ward, an old but well off part of the city.

    You’re almost exactly between the cities bridges, you couldn’t be further from them. This isn’t what people think of as the middle of the city (that’d be the clock tower), but distance wise, now you think about it, this is the heart of the city.

    Endless_Serpents on
  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    Lynch watches the White Moth fail to beat their small wings outside the window and she feels that familiar sadness…but she quickly buries the feeling, and puts on her Face. Tonight was *just business* …and with a Veteran of the Hunt, no less! Hardly a time for sentiment!, she chided herself

    She insisted to Tomos they leave early, this time, as they headed into the Heart of the City.

    Lynch knew exactly what the high-profile murder of the Propaganda Actor would bring, and was on high alert for the slightest signs of unusual activity. She was afraid of lingering police patrols, looking to shake down the usual suspects for answers they didn’t have. She was afraid of improper arrests, for anyone who happened to be nearby, or looked to be undesirable. She was afraid of Langleich troops, looking for Locals to *punish* for the transgression they hadn’t been responsible for…

    Lynch followed a block and a half behind Tomos whenever possible, head down and hugging the shadows. She watched her partner walk in front of her from under her hood, and she smiled to herself. Brute can blend in finally, though he’s still the size of a damn Steam Engine, the young woman laughs silently to herself.

    That first year alone, she’d managed fine, absolutely…but a part of her knew that without Tomas, she wouldn’t have made it this far, living on the edge, after what the country had finally become underneath them. And (she flatters herself) that he seems to have learned from her as well…he walks up along the docks now slowly, pointedly; trying to keep from being noticed. The pair make their way through the dark, a block apart together, headed towards the meeting place on the river…

    Lynch watches the patrols along the streets, and the mood of the Lanleich invaders…what does she Perceive?

    AustinP0027joshgotro
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    edited February 15
    Lynch

    As you look at the moth, it wings slowly fall, then it becomes still again.

    When a hunter or a nightmare touches a living thing they are dragged into the midnight hours too, but this will destroy them in short order unless the offender leaves them be straight away.

    However, right now the streets are silent. The city is dead silent. There will be no one else active tonight but you and the nightmares.

    There’s a lone woman frozen in time under an unlit street lamp. Electricity is still out over this way. She’s stood as if waiting for a bus, but nothing would be coming at night. You see only her silhouette.

    Endless_Serpents on
    mrpaku
  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    edited February 15
    Lynch maintains her Paranoia among the frozen-Midnight population, despite logic and experience telling her they are harmless by now, should such a situation arise

    mrpaku on
    Endless_Serpents
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Lynch

    Do you inspect the woman any closer, or will you keep moving with your ally?

  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    Lynch moves along through the shadows, without giving more than a solitary thought to the woman frozen in time she walks past...Tomos had told her that tonight, this person, was incredibly important...and so, she won't let Tomos leave her eyes for a single second, lest his need for her aid become crucial, or his "important person" turns out to be a mole, or possibly something worse

  • fadingathedgesfadingathedges Registered User regular
    edited February 16
    Emmett crouched next to Leopold, quietly taking in the mud, the crushed stem, the depth of the indentations. The blood.

    Standing, he scans the buildings behind them as unnatural quiet falls over the city, and continues to turn until he faces the river below.

    Softly, "All of it stops, when the Hush comes. But not the river. What do you suppose happens to the fish?"

    "It's time."

    fadingathedges on
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Emmet

    Your allies will be arriving shortly. The world is so quiet you can hear their steps on the street.

    Lynch and Tomas arrive without incident, take in your surroundings if you like, or otherwise you’re simply there now.

    What is your current thoughts on the murder?

    That actor should not have had a reason for being out this way. He was performing for the occupation at the garrison. That’s across the river and further north.

  • AustinP0027AustinP0027 Registered User regular
    Leopold hears steps approaching, and his hand slides to his side where the knife sheathed on his belt lies. He doesn't dare draw it, the things they were after likely weren't going to be quiet as they approached, and any random passerby might question a little more than they should if he was standing there holding a knife.

    He keeps his eyes on those who approach, however, unwilling to be caught off guard by basic assumptions.

  • fadingathedgesfadingathedges Registered User regular
    How far is the water from where are? What is the river's edge like around this area (docks, a dropoff to the water, etc), and can we see the shore?

    Emmett nods to the newcomers. "Lynch. Tomas. This is Leopold." Nothing else had to be explained. They were all still moving, for the same purpose. He gave them a moment to greet.

    Emmett doesn't know enough about the dead to say that it's all too strange for him to be here. It could be nothing noteworthy. Or it could tell them everything they needed to know. "Men walk odd roads for all sorts of reason. A drink, a lover, a game. Any idea what could have brought him to mid-city?"

    Emmett thinks that here at the scene of the murder, any kind of imprint a Nightmare may have left would be significant. After folks have a chance to respond with any thoughts, if it seems like we are dead-ending on information I'd like to make a roll to try to gather more, and see if Emmett can pick up a trail.

    If I understand correctly, I roll 1 base die, plus 1 additional die if I can present a reasonable mechanic or something that gives me a benefit? So I could say: 1 base + 1 Empathy +1 scene of the murder, possibly +1 for not being rushed / having the ability to take time necessary (or is the situational +1 capped at 1?) +1 for help?

    Do I just tell Geth to roll 4d6/5d6 as normal, or is there a syntax that better serves our purposes?

    mrpakuEndless_Serpents
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Emmett
    It’s a few foot drop to the water. There’s a groove leading to the water a ways along that must be the common track of otters. This side of the river is just unkept grass and reeds.

    You can’t see it, but on the opposite side of the river is a bombed out building that used to be a kayaking club. They’ve got their own miniature dock, likely rotten now.

    Yep! You’ve got it. You always have one die, then leverage your aspects, allies and more to improve your chances! Have Geth roll 5d6, the odds are in your favour.

  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    edited February 16
    Lynch assumes the murder is an *elaborate* setup: an attempt to cause violent division, and drive sentiment against the locals under false pretenses. The body wasn’t killed here, she thinks; it was brought here to be found publicly. The simple public will assume the treacherous invaders wouldn’t *kill* one of their own…

    Lynch nods to Emmett and Leopold upon her arrival, but says nothing further. She joins the procession towards the crime scene, walking with a strong, confident stride amongst them (that belayed her sense of trepidation around the newcomers, encroaching upon her and Tomos’s secret Twilight Hour)…

    Lynch would like to take a look at those “otter” tracks a little closer (Carefully!), but she’s on the lookout for much bigger game. She’ll take a brief glance over at the Kayak club across the river as best she can, and then she will quietly Assist in Emmet’s gathering information at the Murder Site, using her innate distrustful nature and eagle eyes to take in facts of the crime scene he may have missed

    mrpaku on
  • fadingathedgesfadingathedges Registered User regular
    Emmett lets his eyes fall out of focus. He feels the shifting temperature in the air, the cool mist off the river, but reaches past it - trying to sense the dark echo of something that had been here the night before.

    Geth roll 5d6 for tracking

    tracking:
    5d6 18 [5d6=2, 6, 5, 2, 3]

    Endless_SerpentsmrpakuAustinP0027
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    edited February 16
    Success!

    Emmett
    While Lynch pokes around by the riverside, you look further. You step back, then take several long paces back. The murder might have taken place over there, or the body dumped, but something crushed the reeds over there. It leads to a high drop into the river. A man would struggle to get up the drop from the river, so if it was a man they dived into the river from here.

    myxew1vdb9i0.png

    Lynch
    The slope into the water has a spent round embedded in the mud. Pistol bullet. Can’t really say from what, it’s crushed, and both sides of the war used much the same pistols.

    Endless_Serpents on
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Some of the reeds are as tall as a man, most are waist height. Crushing a shoulder width path isn’t an easy feat, but not impossible.

    y2wpqn9igra1.png

  • mrpakumrpaku Registered User regular
    "Got a bullet, over ere' ", Lynch says (in an *unnaturally* deep voice), lighting up a cigarette, and flicking the match towards the river, to disappear into the currents...

    Can Lynch tell if the angle of the bullet suggests someone shooting from river, or into it?

  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    Lynch

    It’s a tough call. You can imagine a couple of trajectories. Maybe it ricochet off something, then landed in the mud. Maybe they were aiming into the river from here, but still, why did the round land here unless it bounced off something. If it had been shot directly into the mud it would have dug in a few feet. You don’t think it was fired from the water, the angle doesn’t really allow for it.

    mrpaku
  • Endless_SerpentsEndless_Serpents Registered User regular
    This is a document you should be able to share. Put whatever you want in it.

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/16e9rt91JDHC_c1ieU9bOJVCdbnLs_4pz0DMjuMVaFmU/edit

  • AustinP0027AustinP0027 Registered User regular
    Leopold brings the lantern closer to the reeds. Lynch had found something, a bullet she says. Holding the lantern up higher, he notes the crushed path, and walks gingerly along it, peer ahead with lantern held to shed light where he steps.

    What can I see as I walk down the crushed path? Anything to either side out of place or dropped?
    What do I see as I near the end of it?

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