Black Marty is another role for Marty Tabard, a wanderer of the infinite dimensions of the Manifold.
While it often passes unnoticed in these days of flits, spaceships, and convenient dimensional gates, there is one realm that touches more world-borders than any other, that has a thousand sub-realms that fade into each other so smoothly that only subtle shifts in the local technological rules reveal the change, and which quietly carries a greater share of the Manifold’s trade and adventurers than any other.
The High Seas. A realm where reed boats, wooden boats, fiberglass yachts, iron ships, and seahorse-drawn chariots meet and mix, where a perilous voyage may bring you to shores of legend, and where it is always best to hang onto your purse and keep your sword and pistol handy.
Oddly enough, Marty, Corporate Raider, fits in WONDERFULLY well on the High Seas. Whether you find him captaining a free trader, leading of a swarm of Vikings, or commanding a pirate ship, Black Marty is ready to loot and pillage the High Seas of International Finance!
Unusually, the High Seas tends to overlap a bit with other realms: you don’t stop being a pirate captain just because you’ve gone ashore; you stop being a pirate captain when you get beyond the influence of the sea – or intentionally move on into another local role.
As a note, anyone with a High Seas Identity gets +3 SP worth of Shiphandling (waterborne ships only, a narrow (+5 training) intelligence-based skill) while in that role.
Black Marty is a level four role, and therefore provides 32 CP worth of special abilities – plus the bit of Shiphandling noted above. In Marty’s case, these include:
Privilege/Ship Captain (3 CP).
Executive with CEO and Tactician. Specialized for half cost and Corrupted for 1.5x the usual effect: only works on vikings, pirates, and other freebooters who acknowledge his formal leadership (9 CP). Since Marty is currently level six, this will provide up to (Charisma x 7) followers with bonuses of +4 to their skill checks and +2 to hit and damage.
Reputation: a great (and rather ruthless) Captain/Leader. Corrupted: Marty must actively identify himself and display his black-and-crimson corporate logo for this to work. This makes any attempt to deny his identity somewhat useless (4 CP).
Favors from the Sea and Weather Spirits (3 CP)
Berserker and Enduring: +4 to Str and +4 to Dex for (3+Con Mod) rounds (1+L/3) times per day with no fatigue afterwards. Corrupted: this can only be used during flashy action scenes, not to help with picking locks, climbing walls, or similar convenient but non-actiony times (6 CP).
Improved and Superior Presence: Corrupted and Specialized: Only works while actively brandishing a weapon, being conspicuous, and being an obvious target to attack. Followers get a +2 Morale Bonus to Attack, Damage, Saves, and Checks. Marty gains a +4 to any relevant social skill roll. Attackers must make a Will save at (DC 13 + Cha Mod) or be unable to attack. (6 CP).
+1 SP worth of Watercraft Navigation. That’s a narrow (+5 training) intelligence-based skill (+2x Int Mod, for a net +8), resulting in a base skill of +14 (1 CP).
He also gets a free Shiphandling skill of +16 (0 CP).
Marty is considering picking up the Mystic Artist ability – allowing him to even further inspire his men with his oratory – but hasn’t done so yet. It remains to be seen whether he’ll add that ability to his base character or experiment with it in an identity first.
“Surrender, ye scallywags, or I’ll make ye walk the plank!”
Within the overall Manifold setting, characters may drop into various roles as they move from world to world. Their basic talents remain the same, although individual realms may restrict magic, psionics, technology, or other abilities – but they may also adopt Identities in particular worlds, each granting a particular package of abilities for use within that world – and it’s always nice to be able to keep your basic character while exploring the possibilities of new powers and abilities.