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Friday, June 12, 2009

[RPG] Ancient Wonders Procedure-

(c) 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

Ancient Wonders, Technical Skills, and Aberrations-

What once were the commonplace tools of living and leisure for the Ancients are now considered archaeological treasures and great boons.

While both Intelligence and Wisdom must certainly play a role in determining the type of item, and diagnosing its condition, with a strong argument that high Dexterity may illuminate additional features on most purely-mechanical devices, surely experience itself is a great teacher? So far we have something like this:
  • Base Percentage Chance (BPC) based upon the item's Utility (01% -- 100+%, with higher being better). Simpler, or more 'user-friendly' items are easier to activate in their intended manner than similarly complex items with lower Utility.
  • +/- 5% per Modifier on Exp, Wis, Int, and Dex
  • Condition modifies the Threshold: Irreperable +100, Badly Damaged +75, Minor Damage -0, Superficial Damage -05, Display Item -10, New In Box -25, NIB still in Crate -50
  • Remove Traps to Disarm/Make-Safe, Diagnose Condition, and effect Repair
  • Open Locks to Diagnose and Clear Correctable Malfunctions/Reset
  • Technologians have the correct skill set to perform these procedures, and receive a flat +20% bonus in addition to their rolls
  • Certain Aberrations provide specific bonuses at various stages in the Identification/Diagnosis/Repair process
The Referee then rolls the dice and determines whether the character has discovered how to operate the item, provided it were working properly, and had whatever power needed.

Clearly, a series of steps are necessary to take an artefact and bring it back to operational level. To speed things along, I've come up with this procedure:
  1. Spend an amount of coin on diagnosis and any possible repair at a cost equal to the item's XP value. A rush job will cost at least double (1d4+1x), and subtracts 25 from the item's Utility until the first six times it is used, decreasing by 6% each time until only 1% has degraded until the minor repair is performed.
  2. Spend the XP for the Armour/Weapon Proficiency or Open Locks +%s necessary to operate the item in the field
  3. Pay 1/2 the XP value of the item (if discovered, it may be a 'free cost')
That's it. Now the figure has legally purchased full operational usage of an Ancient wonder.


  1. That is well detailed and pretty clever.

  2. bat,

    Thanks. :)

    While the original artefact-determination flow-charts are outré and cool, they aren't always so useful in-game, IME, and really break frame.

    Since this system is partially-point-buy, I thought the combination of paying coin and XP would keep the player 'involved' without forcing them to carry a useless-to-them item until the one day they made all their necessary rolls --but at the same time, wasn't a freebie.

    Always trying to cover multiple PoVs. :)