Friday, 21 November 2014

Five Kung-Fu Styles

I have been slowly (and I mean very slowly) working on a wuxia-inspired setting and OSR compatible rules. Below I present to you five kung-fu styles, one for each of the five different colours of chi. Also, some notes on the rules.

I think the game will make good use of the damage mechanics introduced in Scarlet Heroes. To put it simply, damage dice are read a bit differently (1 is 0, 2-5 is 1, 6-9 is 2, 10+ is 4), monsters and NPCs have hit points equal to their hit dice, and player characters have a Fray dice that deals damage to every enemy with hit dice lower than or equal to theirs.

Also, I borrow the concept of zones from FATE. A zone is a loosely defined area within which everyone is considered to be in melee reach of everyone else. Also, unless someone or something blocks the way, characters may freely move one zone on their turn, which nicely fits the genre.

I don't think spectacular movement like running on water or the wind are going to be separate abilities, because I imagine every character doing stunts like that. However, I intend to somehow tie it to the level of kung-fu the characters know.

Some of the techniques provided by the kung-fu styles may overlap with generally available manoeuvres. The difference would be that without a refined technique, a contest roll is needed (attack roll against each other), and one needs to win by a margin of 5 to succeed (as in Kard és Mágia and Helvéczia). Also, if the opponent succeeds, the manouevre backfires.

I'm not yet sure how I would like to implement the different colours of chi. I have thought about plenty of solutions, from a sort of colour-based resource system where a given number of chi is needed for different manoeuvres (similar to Magic: the Gathering) to an improved rock-paper-scissors system.

So, here are the five styles:

Dragon Wind Style (Wood)
  • requires Fists
  • Level 1 - On a successful hit, you may - instead of rolling for damage - push your enemy to an adjacent zone.
  • Level 2 - You may burst through your enemies just like a strong wind. On a successful attack roll, you knock down all of your enemies in the same zone as you.
  • Level 3 - With the power of the wind you may push an enemy right into another. It requires two separate attack rolls and that you do not roll your Fray die this round; on a success, they get knocked down and take damage as normal.
Fierce Sword Style (Fire)
  • requires Sword
  • Level 1 - Instead of a normal attack, you may initiate a flurry of slashes, increasing your Fray die by 2 steps.
  • Level 2 - You have a strong bond with your weapon, which allows you to draw it to your hand from a short distance (effectively negating the effects of a disarming attack).
  • Level 3 - Your sword is faster than anybody else's; you may act first in every combat round, if you so wish (you still need to beat those who possess a similar ability).
Frozen Fist Style (Water)
  • requires Fists
  • Level 1 - If you hit an enemy, they lose their free movement on their next turn.
  • Level 2 - You are immune to cold-based attacks and magic; furthermore, your attacks extinguish natural and magical fires.
  • Level 3 - By channeling your inner cold through your attacks your fists cause cold damage. Furthermore, you may roll an additional damage die and take the better result.
Guardian Spear Style (Earth)
  • requires Staff or Spear
  • Level 1 - You have learnt that sometimes a guardian needs to sacrifice himself. If an ally of yours in the same zone as you is hit, you may choose to take the damage in their stead.
  • Level 2 - Your movements distract your opponents; enemies in the same zone as you receive -2 penalty to attacks that do not target you.
  • Level 3 - Ignoring your presence is a grave mistake for your enemy, and a great opportunity for you. If an enemy in the same zone as you makes an attack against one of your allies, you may immediately make an attack against that opponent.
Heavenly Bow Style (Metal)
  • requires Bow
  • Level 1 - Your shots are so accurate that you never risk accidently hitting any of your allies.
  • Level 2 - You fire dozens of missiles in seconds which hit your foes as a rain of arrows straight from the heavens. If you forgo your normal attack, you may roll an additional Fray die.
  • Level 3 - Your missiles are imbued with the power of the heavens and it damages even supernatural creatures immune to mundane weaponry.

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