Monday, May 2, 2011

New Character Race: Geologian

Hit Dice: 1d8 per point of CON
Mutations: 1d3 Geologian, 1d2 mental

Geologians are a mysterious and seldom-encountered race of mineral-based creatures who seem to be constructed of living rock. Geologians are usually found in a roughly humanoid shape (two arms/legs, stands upright, etc.) although they are a bit taller, averaging 6-7 feet in height, as well as being much heavier than normal humanoids, nearing a half-ton for some specimens. Geologians may have some metallic isotopes and minerals within their structure, but not enough to be considered made of metal. Geologians gain +2 when rolling for both Strength and Constitution. Because of their rocky structure, Geologians roll 1d8 per point of Constitution for their hit point totals.

It is unknown how (or if) Geologians are actually "alive," as organic materials are not found in their chemical makeup. Some theorize that Geologians are comprised of some sort of silicon-based DNA, rather than the carbon-based life usually found in the Mutant Future. Others assume that Geologians are actually made up of billions of microscopic robotic nanites who have bound themselves to sand and stone and then to each other to form a colony-like sentient being. And others just shrug and don't bother asking such questions in a world of bizarre things such as spidergoats. Regardless, Geologians require air, food, and water just like any other living creature.

Geologians are usually encountered in large barren rock-strewn locations -- large blast craters, Ancient abandoned quarries, deep underground caverns, anyplace with massive amounts of exposed stone and little animal/plant life. Geologians do not seem to have a social structure or settlements, as each one encountered is alone and on its own. Geologians do not have parents and, if asked, will simply say that it has always been the way it is now for as long as it can recall. Many Geologians have no formal name, as they have no need for self-monikers due to their solitude. They will, however, give themselves a name for others to call them, usually using whatever stone makes up a majority of their composition. Names such as "Flint," "Granite," and Gypsum" have been encountered.

Geologians are never found wearing clothes (nothing to hide, really) and rarely wear armor, feeling that their own body structure is armor enough. However one drawback to its physical structure is that a Geologian cannot be healed through artificial means, as most normal healing supplies are for carbon-based creatures. (It is left to the Mutant Lord's discretion if he wishes to allow concrete or other stone-based compounds as a Geologian healing agent.)

A player bases his Geologian's physical make-up and structure based on Mohs Scale of Mineral Hardness. The scale runs from 1 to 10, with 1 being the softest naturally-found minerals such as talc and graphite, and 10 being boron and diamond. If desired, have the player roll 1d10. The result is his "hardness" as found on the scale. He can then determine a matching stone to describe his Geologian's primary mineral makeup. His starting AC will be found on a reverse sliding scale of Mohs 1 = AC 10; Mohs 2 = AC 9; through Mohs 10 = AC 1.

Geologian Mutations Table

Beneficial :

1-5. Geothermal Emissions - The PC's "blood" is actually molten magma. Due to this increased internal core temperature, the PC can generate a ray of heat every three rounds that does 4d6 hit points of damage to those within 50 feet.

6-9. Gigantism - Treat as per the Gigantism mutation on page 24 of the MF rulebook.

10-15. Diamond Hardness - The PC's rock-like outer surface is denser than typical stone giving the PC an additional -3 AC modifier.

16-19. Hyperburrowing - The PC can move through dirt and earth as easily as others swim through water. When hyperburrowing, the PC can move through the ground at one-third his above-ground movement rate. The mutation cannot be used for excavation purposes, as the ground closes up behind the hyperburrowing PC.

20-25. Fossilizing Touch - The PC can mineralize flesh and plant material with his touch. Unless the target makes a save versus death, his cellular structure will crystallize into stone, killing the target instantly. A successful save means the target takes 1d8 hit points of damage from the cellular disruption. Regardless of outcome, this attack drains the PC's fortitude, and he will be unable to attack again for 2d10 rounds.

26-29. Spiked Projectiles - The PC can fire off sharp, stony bits of himself as deadly projectiles. The distance is that of a dagger and each skike does 1d4 hit points of damage. A PC can throw 6 spikes a day and must "regenerate" fired spikes during a night's rest.

30-34. Environmental Immunity - The PC's metabolism does not require air to function. He can stay underground, underwater, or in an airless vacuum forever without harmful effects. The PC is also immune to airborne hazards such as poisons, parasites, and disease.

35-38. Seismic Tremor - A powerful localized earthquake occurs in a 50-foot radius from the PC's location. All standing within the area of effect must make a DEX check or topple to the ground, taking 1d4 hit points of damage. Fragile or unsafe structures could collapse in the area. If in a cave or cavern, a cave-in could occur. It is left to the Mutant Lord to determine the effect to surrounding structures and landmarks.

39-43. Lodestone - The PC's structure contains a strong magnetic field under his control. Using this field, he can attract and repel metallic objects with a maximum weight manipulated up to his normal carrying capacity. This ability has a range of 50 feet.

44-47. Increased Physical Attribute - One of the PC's physical attributes is increased. Roll 1d4 to
determine the specific effects: 1-3 = Increased Strength: The character receives an additional 1d10 points added to his STR score. 3-6 = Increased Constitution: The character receives an additional 1d10 points added to his CON score.

48-52. Light Refraction - Small flecks of crystallized materials coat the PC's outer surface, making him immune to all light- and laser-based attacks. If attacked, the Mutant Lord should roll to see if the reflected beam strikes another target or the attacker himself.

53-56. Ice/Fire Immunity - The PC is immune to all heat- and cold-based attacks. He is also able to withstand near absolute zero temperatures as well as heat up to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit (just below the melting point of rock).

57-61. Fissure Sense - The PC is able to "sense" the naturally occurring stress points and weaknesses in any object. This gives the PC an additional 1d6 hit point damage bonus in combat. This ability extends to being able to detect and identify any mutational drawbacks an NPC has.

62-65. Radioactive Emissions - Radioactive isotopes make up part of the PC's internal structure. The PC can generate a ray of radiation every three rounds that does 4d6 hit points of damage to those within 50 feet.

66-70. Earth Mover - Up to 60 cubic feet of loose earth can be moved per turn a the will of the PC. Neither solid stone nor large boulders can be moved in this way, however.

71-74. Stone Wall - The PC can cause loose stones and gravel to rise from the earth, creating a wall in any form the PC desires, up to 1,000 cubic feet. The wall can only be called up from bare earth and not indoors. The wall cannot appear directly where another object orn character stands, and it must rest on a solid surface.

75-79. Mineral Dissolve - The PC can cause the molecular cohesion of rock and stone to dissolve with a touch. When it dissolves, it forms a grainy, gritty mud-like substance. Up to 1,000 square feet of rock can be destroyed in this manner.

80-83. Vibrational Sense - The PC can feel vibrations in the earth from up to 200 yards away. The PC can use this sense like a radar, "feeling" the approximate position of nearby characters and objects. This sense only works when the target is moving along the ground. Still objects cannot be "felt."

Drawbacks:

84-88. Mute - The PC is completely incapable of speech and can only communicate through panomine or writing (if the PC has learned how to write).

89-92. Slow Mutant - Treat as per the Slow Mutant drawback on page 28 of the MF rulebook.

93-96. Reduced Mental Attribute - One of the PC's mental attributes is decreased. Roll 1d4 to determine the specific effects: 1-3 = Decreased Intelligence: The character loses 1d6 points from his INT score. 3-6 = Decreased Willpower: The character loses 1d6 points from his WIL score.

97-00. Pain Insensitivity - Treat as per the Pain Insensitivity drawback on page 27 of the MF rulebook.

NOTE: I'd like to thank Justin S. Davis for his help in naming this new race!

5 comments:

  1. Aw, I love the Rock Lords.

    But what would be the benefit of having players roll on the hardness scale rather than selecting it? I skimmed the mutations wondering if some of them might be enhanced by a "softer" geologian, did I miss something?

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  2. The mineral compounds of a Geologian could run the gamut from talc to granite, so it seemed fitting -- in a mutation game based on random rolls -- to have the primary mineral making up a Geologian to be randomly rolled as well. If a PC could select his general make-up, you'd have a party of AC 1 diamond-encrusted badasses. And if the race had a general "starting" AC, then all of them would be technically made up of the same rocky material. The Mohs Scale initial AC could be considered optional by the Mutant Lord if so desired though.

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  3. Yes, it's fair enough that the mutative theme of the game would apply to their hardness; but that's why I kind of expected that hardness, in turn, to provide a benefit to some powers inverse to the AC it also provides.

    In other words, a character rolling a d10 and getting a "poor" hardness might still hold out hope that he lucks into a "good" mutation: perhaps the calcification attack is easier for softer Geologians to apply because they're converting the organic matter of their targets to a less dense (and thus quicker to change) material; perhaps they fire a greater number of projectiles because their makeup is easier to break apart; etc.

    I agree with not wanting to let every player just min-max their way to having unbeatable ACs, but wonder if it might not also go a ways towards making a player more enthusiastic about a low-hardness Geo if they could see some obvious advantages to it...basically turning the hardness role from a binary decision (did I get a good hardness, or a bad one?) into a continuum that affected other considerations.

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  4. Well, there are a host of mutational drawbacks in each table of the rulebook, and I myself have rolled up characters with not one beneficial mutation. That's the nature of the game -- can you survive even if saddled with some built-in Achille's heel? After all, nobody rolls hoping for "Hemophilia." ;)

    Anyway, if a Geologian does roll a low initial AC, then he's no different than a armorless pure human just starting out. A Geologian may shy away from wearing armor (as stated in the description), but isn't adverse to the idea if he's constantly getting his ass chipped off.

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  5. Thanks for the shout-out...glad I could contribute.

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