d20 and Post-Apocalyptic Mecha-Style Games

Having now got the Eclipse Compiled book and the Practical Enchanter book, and Legends of High Fantasy is on the way to me, I need some guidance.

It’s easy to see how this works with a D20 type campaign. But what I want to use these on is Palladium – most notably Rifts. Any ideas on how the conversion might work?

-Bruce Gray

This varies somewhat depending on if you want to run a Rifts-style game using the Eclipse d20 rules or if you want to translate d20 characters into Rifts or vice-versa – so this initial look is going to be awfully generic.

When you come down to actual play most of the differences between Rifts and the d20 rules set are actually pretty straightforward. That’s really not too surprising given that the Palladium system is ultimately quite derivative of early-edition AD&D and Runequest and has never really been revised or upgraded.

Rifts characters and monsters are essentially invulnerable to minor attacks – to non-magical weapons in d20 terms. d20 characters are, however, far more resistant to major attacks since the d20 damage scale is exponential instead of linear.

  • When you’re considering Rifts and d20 it’s important to remember that the d20 scale starts off with fairly ordinary people (like the Rifts City Rat) and ends up with the power to create and destroy universes – far beyond he upper limits for Rifts characters (or gods).

d20 damage is not linear. For example, as explored HERE, a medium size Mace in d20 hits for 1d8 damage plus strength modifiers – often enough (with either a critical hit or a good strength modifier) to instantly kill a normal (1d4 hit points) person. A Colossal Mace is 12 times as large in any dimension (and so masses almost seven tons) and hits at the same rate – meaning it’s swung 12 times as fast. This comes out to 248,832 times as much kinetic energy to inflict damage. That’s 248,832d8 damage in Rifts linear damage system or 248d8 Megadamage.

Yet a Colossal Mace only does 6d6+Str Mod damage in d20 (the same base damage as a sixth level wizard throwing a Fireball). If we simply consider d20 attacks to be megadamage… we are actually cheating the high-end d20 types out of most of their damage. For example, according to Rifts official FAQ’s, the Tsar Bomba would have a total destruction radius of 10 KM, causes 3d6 x 1000 MD out to 16 KM, and causes 2d6 x 100 MD out to 22.5 KM. In d20… a direct hit with it causes 25d6 damage and some saving throws. A d20 future “Singularity Grenade” sucks all matter and energy within it’s radius into a black hole – tearing matter apart at the subatomic level with infinite forces. It does 15d6 damage.

Similarly, d20 characters are not soft, squishy, mortals to begin with. As covered over HERE, one d20 hit point is roughly equal to a Battlemech (or Megadamage) Hit Point – and the same logic applies given that a City Rat starts off with an average of about forty (27 + PE) SDC and HP while an equivalent d20 character will start with an average of 2-3 HP.

  • Rifts armor protection is ablative rather than constant – which means that repairing and replacing armor is a constant preoccupation for combat-based characters.
  • Rifts has more technical skills, and starts with higher skill bases, but skills develop more slowly and never achieve the kind of inhuman levels that d20 characters can develop – partially because d20 has sliding difficulty levels, while most Rifts skill rolls have fixed targets and few modifiers. What level of the Rifts Acrobatics skill will let you walk on clouds? d20 skills can do things like that.
  • Rifts power-items are usually technologically styled (and lean very heavily towards “bang” as opposed to more subtle abilities). Of course d20 covers this too; both in d20 future and in publications like Dragonstar.
  • Starting Rifts characters are more powerful compared to basic NPC’s than most d20 characters are mostly thanks to that invulnerability to minor attacks – but high-end Rifts characters are far less powerful than high-end d20 characters.
  • Rifts skills can boost attributes and provide special abilities. In d20 you get similar boosts from Feats and Martial Arts Skills. The overall effect is pretty similar.
  • Rifts usually defaults to limiting magic by a characters magical reserves rather than by spell slots, but it’s not like d20 mages can’t be built that way.
  • All d20 characters are automatically trained in combat, often with a very wide variety of weapons. Rifts characters need hand-to-hand combat skills and specific weapon proficiencies.
  • d20 combat is more abstracted than Rifts (parries and such are presumed as a part of AC), but the end result is similar enough; you trade attacks and maneuvers until someone goes down.
  • d20 Saves are considerably better organized, but function in much the same way. The primary difference is, once again, the scaling target numbers.

And that’s about it. There are some game-mechanical differences, such as the difference in characteristic scales – but as long as those remain consistent within the game, the actual numbers only matter when converting characters.

So to run a Post-Apocalypse or “Rifts”-Styled d20 Game:

  • Characters with Adventurer Classes and Monsters with CR 4+ all get DR 8/Magic for free.
  • Player Characters start at Level Four.
  • Magical Weapons, Armor, and Physical Attribute Boosters are all generally technological and are available for one-fifth the normal price. Alternatively, if you wish to go for the “big guns and mecha” feel, use the Federation-Apocalypse gear (Common Gadgets, Small Arms, Effectors and Remotes, Medical Care, Mecha and Power Armor, Core PsitechWeapon Benchmarks, Battlemech Conversions (and a few more d20 Battlemech Conversions), Flit, Orb, and Starship Shields) or the Shadowed Galaxy equipment skills (General Gear and Weapons).
  • When a Character takes damage, their armor or shield is also hit for one-half that damage. It’s hardness, however, applies. Mostly from the SRD…
    • Effective Armor Hardness: 5 (Leather, etc), 10 (Steel), 15 (Special Metals), 20 (Adamant), +2 per +1 bonus
    • Armor Hit Points: 5 x AC Bonus + 10 per +1 bonus or equivalent.
  • There are no magic marts. You’ve got to find stuff – whether by seeking out someone who makes it or by theft or salvage. Low-end stuff is fairly common, high end stuff is rare. Most items are technologically styled; instead of a “wand of healing” you have a healers kit. (Most characters should take the ability to use such things as “technological aptitude” (Item Use).
  • Experience point gains are halved after reaching level six, reduced to one-fourth after reaching level nine, and reduced to one-eighth at levels twelve to fifteen, and so on.

And now your d20 game will play a lot like Rifts (or Deadlands, or a dozen similar settings). Only adventurers with special gear will be able to handle monsters, their armor will need constant maintenance, and it will be extremely slow and difficult to achieve the heights of cosmic power normally available in d20.

Do you want to bring d20 characters into your Rifts game?

  • Double the d20 characters hit points to get their MDC. D20 Armor boosts it’s wearer’s ability to withstand damage rather than having it’s own hits (after all, there is always the classic chainmail bikini, which works just fine in d20). Add standard d20 Armor HP to the user’s MDC. As a magical booster, d20 armor is only destroyed if specifically targeted after the wearer is dead. Alternatively, simply translate things into technologically-styled armor.
  • All d20 magical weapons, magically enhanced attacks, spells, psionic powers, and other special abilities inflict their usual damage as megadamage.
  • Use the d20 characters Fortitude Bonus against Diseases, Poisons, and Drugs, their Will Bonus against Curses, Insanity, Magic, and Psionics, and their Reflex Bonus to Parry, Dodge, and Roll with the Punch. In all cases, normal Rifts target numbers apply.
  • 4) All d20 characters get (BAB/5, rounded up, +2) Attacks at their full BAB since Rifts rounds are fifteen seconds long instead of six.
  • Rifts Speed = (2 x d20 Movement / 3).
  • Take the d20 skills, multiply the bonuses by 10%, and put it into something roughly equivalent Rifts skills. If anything goes over 120%, put the extra into related skills.
  • 7) Forget physical skills. Forget weapon proficiencies. d20 buys that stuff directly, and folds it into generic proficiency sets and BAB. Use BAB as the bonus to attacks.
  • 8) If, for some reason, you want to compare attributes, multiply the d20 attributes by 1.6

Really, everything else is quite compatible enough; sure, there will be some strange mechanics by Rifts standards – but Rifts is full of strange mechanics particular to specific items, creatures, and OCCs.

Do you want to convert Rifts characters to d20? That’s more awkward simply because Rifts has little consistency. There aren’t any simple rules that will cover all the odd cases given that a whale wizard, a cosmo-knight, a demigodling, a cloud-tentacle monster, a doctor, and a dryad will have compatibility problems even in Rifts, much less in translation. The simplest way is to just give the mundane characters big guns and advanced armor (probably using d20 Future or the Federation-Apocalypse gear) and turn the magic-users and psychics into appropriate types – but when the weird stuff comes up it will probably just be easier to use Eclipse to build something equivalent – or just reverse the “convert to d20” quick rules above.

Professor Challenger, the Artificial Intelligence

And with the Challenger up, it’s time to put up Ameobro’s new friend – the Artificial Intelligence / Autopilot that comes with it. “Professor Challenger”, as empowered by the Sephirot Incident, is a formidable, mostly science-oriented, AI, capable of piloting the Challenger at near its full potential – although it can still only use one of the ships (rather minor) guns at any one time.  The Professor sees “his” purpose as the exploration and mapping of the Imaginal Planes and mineral resources of the Earth with a special focus on “subterranean” realms. Secondarily, of course, “he” assists and advises his current owner(s) and driver. The fact that his driver is a giant alien amoeba with the mind of a small child has no bearing on his job…

Value Characteristic Points
17 DEX 21
27 INT 17
15 EGO 10
4 SPD 13
Total 61
Points Powers END
23 Mental Defense (Psi-shielded Casing) (26 pts); Add to Total
15 Mind Link with Stone User; Minds: One Specific Mind, +5; Number of Minds: 1, +0; Distance: Any, +5; Dimension: Any, +5; Link with: Anyone, +0
1 Computer Powers Elemental Control (1-pt reserve)
a-2 Internet Access / Radio Listen and Transmit; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; IIF: -¼; Generic Limitation (Wireless Internet Only.): -½
b-2 Absolute Time Sense
c-2 Lightning Calculator
d-4 Eidetic Memory; Generic Limitation (Only for computer data and programs.): -1
e-1 Speed Reading; Generic Limitation (Only for computer data and programs.): -1
f-2 Cramming; Generic Limitation (Only for computer data and programs.): -1
4 Multiscanner Multipower (20-pt reserve); Extra Time: 5 min., -2; OAF: -1; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; Focus Type: Vehicular, -½. This is an internal piece of equipment for examining relics, genetic samples, and other oddities.
u-1 Psionic Analysis / Detect Psionic Energies (+6 to PER); Time Required: Half Phase, +0; Range: Touch, +0; Addition (Discriminatory): +5
u-1 Genetic Analysis / Detect Genetic Structures (+6 to PER); Time Required: Half Phase, +0; Range: Touch, +0; Addition (Discriminatory): +5
u-1 Biochemical Analysis / Detect Biochemicals (+6 to PER); Time Required: Half Phase, +0; Range: Touch, +0; Addition (Discriminatory): +5
u-1 Physical Analysis / Detect Physical Structure (+6 to PER); Time Required: Half Phase, +0; Range: Touch, +0; Addition (Discriminatory): +5
u-1 Electron Microscope / Microscopic Vision (×1,000,000)
u-1 N-Ray Vision / X-Ray Scanner
4 Biosynthesis System Multipower (20-pt reserve); Extra Time: 1 hour, -2½; OAF: -1; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; Focus Type: Vehicular, -½; The system does need to be plugged into a serious power supply to make this multipower work; simply being on the power grid will not do.
u-1 1d6 Biochemical Synthesis / Transform: Stock Chemicals to Biochemicals (Major, Limited Class); Range: 95 2
u-1 1d6 Genetic Manipulator and Genesis Vat / Transform Cell Sample to Desired Organism (Major, Limited Class). This is a small facility, and normally produces eggs, infants, and so on. 2
u-1 1d6 Genesplicing / Transform for minor “tweaks” to living organisms (Minor, Limited Class). 2
u-1 Regeneration Induction (1 BODY/5 min.); Usable By Others: Power Lost, +¼; Usable by Others Number: 8, +¾; Regenerate: Standard, +0.
70 Total Powers  
Points Skills, Talents, Perks Roll
3 Combat Driving 12-
3 Navigation 11-
3 Systems Operation 14-
20 +2 level w/Overall Level
3 Scholar
Knowledge Skills
(2) Creatures of the Imaginal Realms 14-
(2) The Imaginal Realms 14-
(2) Geological Maps 14-
(2) Creatures of Elemental Earth 14-
(2) Earth Magic 14-
3 Scientist
Science Skills
(2) Anthropology 14-
(2) Archaeology 14-
(2) Biochemistry 14-
(2) Biology 14-
(2) Biophysics 14-
(2) Ecology 14-
(2) Geology 14-
(2) Genetics 14-
(2) History 14-
(2) Hydrology 14-
(2) Inorganic Chemistry 14-
(2) Medicine 14-
(2) Metallurgy 14-
(2) Microbiology 14-
(2) Minerology 14-
(2) Mining Engineer 14-
(2) Nuclear Physics 14-
(2) Parapsychology 14-
(2) Paleontology 14-
(2) Pharmacology 14-
(2) Prospecting 14-
(2) Vehicle Engineer 14-
89 Total Skills, Talents, Perks  
100+ Disadvantages
10 Overconfidence (Common, Moderate)
10 Overcurious (Common, Moderate)
20 Total Disadvantages
COSTS: Char. Powers Total Total Disadv. Base
61 + 159 = 220 120 = 20 + 100
OCV DCV ECV Mental Def. PD/rPD ED/rED Phases
6 6 5 26 0/0 0/0 3, 6, 9, 12

Like many another artificial intelligence, Professor Challenger has an immense list of scientific and knowledge skills, access to a few built in systems to help with “his” job (the exploration, mapping, and analysis of new realms), a few bits of relevant gear, the ability to operate the vehicle he’s “occupying” competently – and not a lot else. Still, within “his” fields he’s quite an expert, and can use the Challenger’s sensors to keep an “eye out” for odd goings-on in the vicinity.

The Challenger

Ameobro has recently attuned a gemstone that summons a partially-transparent “Mole Drill” constructed of red-tinted planes of force. As such, he needs it’s statistics…

The Challenger Stone is fairly straightforward: Summon: The Challenger (200 Point Vehicle) and Professor Challenger (200 Point AI) (2 225-point creatures; 25 points remains available for upgrades); Range: 0; Summon: Limited Group, +¼; Generic Limitation (Only one set of summons can exist at a time.): -1; Generic Limitation (If the Challenger or Professor is destroyed, it must regenerate before it can be resummoned): -½; Focus: Obvious Accessible, -1; Extra Time: full phase, -½; Concentrate: 0 DCV, -½; Charges: +7. (20 CP).

The Challenger:

Vehicle Characteristics

  • STR 20/70 (10 CP).
  • DEX 17 (21 CP).
  • BODY 22/32 (12 CP)
  • SPD 4 (13 CP)

Size Increase-4: 3.1 hexes (133 sq ft), 1.55 inside, 3 passengers, 3″ long x 1″ wide, 1,600 kg, KB -4, DCV 4 (Mod -2) (20 CP).

Elemental Control: Force Construct Mole Drill (15-pt reserve); Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; Focus Type: Vehicular, -½; Focus: Obvious Inaccessible, -½ (6 CP).

  • a-6 Life Support (total)
  • b-32 Armor (32 PD/32 ED)
  • c-10 Growth-6 (×64 mass, ×4 height); Mass: 64 kg/141 lbs; Height: 0 cm/0″; Extra STR: 30; Knockback Reduction: -6; Extra BODY: 6; Extra STUN: 6; DCV Penalty: -4; PER Penalty: +4; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Generic Limitation (Size fixed once summoned)
  • d-15 Shrinking-4 (DCV +8, Height 0 cm/0″); Mass: 0 kg/0.00 lbs; Knockback Increase: 12; PER Bonus: -8; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Generic Limitation (Size fixed once summoned): -½
  • General Sensor Enhancements 12; 360-Degree Sensing (Unusual Senses) (10 CP), Enhanced Perception (Detect, +10 to PER, 20 CP).
  • f-6 Detect: Metals, Minerals, and Geological Structures and Oddities (+8 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5; Addition (Discriminatory Sense): +5
  • g-6 Detect Dimensional Pathways (+8 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5; Addition (Discriminatory Sense): +5
  • h-6 Detect Life Forms (+8 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5; Addition (Discriminatory Sense): +5
  • i-6 Detect Energy (+8 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5; Addition (Discriminatory Sense): +5;
  • j-6 Detect Matter (“See Map”) (+8 to PER); Time Required: Instant, +2; Range: Ranged, +5; Addition (Discriminatory Sense): +5
  • k-17 1d6 Killing Attack (RKA); Range: 375; Penetrating: +1; Reduced END: Zero, +½; Addition (Vehicular Item, x8): +15; Generic Limitation (Divided between forward, two side, and rear arcs,): -½; Extra Time: full phase, -½
  • l-9 Change Environment (Lights) (16″ rad.); Effect: Fixed, +0; Reduced END: Zero, +½

23 Drive Multipower (75-pt reserve); Extra Time: full phase, -½; Extra Time Required: Only At Startup, ½; Focus: Obvious Inaccessible, -½; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; Focus Type: Vehicular, -½; Generic Limitation (Movement Powers Only): -½

  • u-2 Tunneling (10″ through DEF 15); Tunnels: Not Left Behind, +10. 2 Endurance.
  • u-1 Swimming (+30″, 32″, NC: 256″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×8, +10; Non-Combat (MPH): 357. 6 Endurance.
  • u-1 Running (+10″, 16″, NC: 256″); Non-Combat Multiplier: ×16, +15; Non-Combat (MPH): 238. 3 Endurance.
  • u-1 Extra-Dimensional Movement/Imaginal Realms; Dimensions: Group, +10. 3 Endurance.

Main Engines / END Reserve (120 END, 30 REC/turn); Focus: Obvious Inaccessible, -½; Focus Mobility: Bulky, -½; Focus Type: Vehicular, -½; Usable By Others: Simultaneous Use, +½ (23 CP).

Self-Repair / Regeneration (1 BODY/hour); Regenerate: From Death, +20 (17 CP).

Basic Vehicle Cost: 265 CP – 65 CP Disadvantages = 200 CP Net Cost.

Disadvantages:

  • Distinctive Features: Glowing, semi-transparent, force-construct vehicle.; Concealability: Not Concealable, 15; Reaction: Noticed and Recognizable, +0 (15 CP).
  • Vulnerability: Electrical Attacks (1½× BODY); Attack: Common, +10 (10 CP).
  • Vulnerability: Radiation (1½× BODY); Attack: Common, +10 (10 CP).
  • Hunted: Captain Massacre and Rivals (8-); Capabilities: As Powerful, 10; Non-combat Influence: None, +0; Geographical Area: Unlimited, -0; Actions: Hunting, ×1; Punishment: Harsh, 0 (10 CP).
  • Physical Limitation: Mysteriously breaks down on an 8- on arrival in a new realm, and will take days to repair (Frequently, Fully) (20 CP).

The Challenger is – normally – about the size of a large recreational vehicle, but can be summoned in a variety of other sizes – including small enough that Ameobro, even at his base size, can basically “wear” it. This has relatively little effect on it’s characteristics, although shrinking it will reduce its Body rating somewhat. Its weapons are not especially potent and have limited arcs of fire although they can wear most targets down eventually – but its armor is quite formidable against basic attacks. The included artificial intelligence can operate both the vehicle and one of it’s weapon systems at any one time and is always available for consultation.

While the Challengers mobility is useful, and its weapons are occasionally handy, its greatest benefit is probably the sensory suite that it makes available; its detections are broad-spectrum, analytic, difficult to evade, and extremely sensitive. All in all, that can be pretty handy.

Rifts-Style Smartclothes

   After they first appeared in our Marvel Super Heroes game, Smartclothes migrated into quite a few games – and developed considerably along the way. Most other games called for far more standardized systems than a super-hero game, as well as considerably more detail. Given that those other games rarely went in that heavily for skin-tight costumes, most of the list of gear was relegated to more-or-less ordinary pockets and pouches or worn as accessories. Ergo, a lot of the options for having systems and kits “built-in” went away.

   In any case, here’s the slightly-later version for Rifts. For those who are looking, the d20 version is over here, and here are a few possible upgrades for it.

   “Smartclothes” weren’t designed as military or even paramilitary gear. They were designed for scientists, mountaineers, firefighters, chemical handlers, orbital construction workers, zoo workers, and anyone else who worked in a hazardous environment. Unfortunately, they were still a rare innovation even in England (“Clothes that make the man”, where they were invented) when the apocalypse came. Smartclothes are made of a network of programmed, microtronic, mega-damage fibers capable of taking on various functions and configurations. While they generate a low-grade parastatic force field, it’s primarily environmental, rather than a form of “armor”. Under attack, the suit dissipates what it can in the way of damaging energies, but any remainder is transmitted to the wearer without harming the suit. Sadly, thanks to the quasi-psionic linkage of the control links, killing the user usually damages or burns out the suits control system as well. However it works, the system is marvelously helpful and responsive. Annoyingly, attempting to wear it over MD armor beyond the lightest (E.G., a vest and such – a maximum of 15 MDC) disrupts the control links, while trying to wear heavy (MD) armor over smartclothes inhibits their operation.

  • Armor Value; Absorbs the first 6 points of MD from any assault. “Bursts” count as a single assault but, if it should somehow matter, “Volleys” do not.
  • Life Support; Two-hour oxygen supply, indefinite where reasonable (even if normally unbreathable) external environmental sources are available, including water-extraction. Indefinite comfortable tolerance of -60 to 120 degrees Celsius, short-term tolerance of up to -100 or +250 degrees. Excellent radiation shielding and full chemical/biological seal. Normal fires do no damage, but nuclear, plasma, and magical fires do full damage – less the “armor value”. The life support systems can be loaded with a small reserve of water (augmented by recycling of sweat and exhaled moisture) and a supply of nutrient tablets (sufficient for two weeks of bare survival) – but rarely is. Most people prefer to carry food and water if they need to.
  • Power Supply; Distributed ultra-density micro-battery storage system supplemented by solar and thermoelectric sources. These normally suffice, but an extremely hostile environment can drain the reserve within 48 hours. Fortunately for the would-be volcanologist and deep-arctic explorer, the power reserves can be supplemented with standard E-Cells.
  • Sensor Systems; Computer-processing of visual input is available, permitting IR/UV/Light-Amplification visual modifications – as well 300x magnification (telescopic or microscopic). The suit also includes a basic N/B/C environmental sensor system, and can be hooked to other, external, instrument systems. Flare protection and/or polarization is automatic – as is compensation for excessive environmental noise levels.
  • Electronics; Full personal computer, pocket secretary, short-range communication, and entertainment functions – all controlled and accessed via inductive neural link. Minor systems include an inertial locator and map-display system (for sportsmen), an emergency SOS beacon, basic bio-monitoring of the user, and the usual internal monitoring and maintenance functions. Offers a +35% on computer skills if used as an access terminal. Thanks to the suits variable configuration, any disk and any kind of access port can be accommodated.
  • Variable Configuration; Possibly the most interesting, and certainly the most unique, attribute of smartclothes is their ability to shift appearance and arrangement – swiftly reweaving themselves to meet the wearers needs from moment to moment. Color and texture are variable as well, making them a true all-purpose suit. The fibers can’t exert much force, but they can render themselves superbly rigid, and are incredibly tough. Besides the obvious applications of hidden pockets and “chameleon” tricks, the system subtly braces and supports the user (granting a +3 bonus to his / her effective strength), automatically bandages wounds (and acts as a cast – if necessary), locks on to surface irregularities (giving the user excellent traction and climbing abilities), and can even be deployed as a parachute for short periods. Individual fibers and bunches can even be used as probes and lockpicks – once again, given some re-programming to override those “civilian limitations”. Underwater, the suit enables dives of up to 600 meters and effectively triples the wearer’s swimming speed.
  • Self-Repairing; As “quasi-living” nanotechnological triumphs, smartclothes are extremely difficult to damage in any case – but if they are, the fabric can incorporate new fibers, scavenge the remains of old ones, and even slowly “grow” new fibers if enough of the suit remains to direct the process – and enough power is available.
  • Auxiliary Modules; As unique and flexible as they are, there are many things the basic fiber structure of the system cannot do. Hence the auxiliary modules – small, hard-system (Cylindrical, 12 MDC casings) supplemental systems. Known modules include:
    • Automatic Medical Pack. This handy system treats diabetes, allergies, shock, and so on, using a series of diagnostic probes and systems, an internal supply of various drugs, and an effective “paramedic” skill of 45%.
    • Communications. This unit provides long-range audiovisual and data communication links, along with frequency scanning functions and basic encryption and decryption functions – enough for civilian privacy, if not up to military standards.
    • Life Support. This module is primarily a 24-hour oxygen reserve and a miniaturized plant that will restock the supply when atmospheric oxygen (and power) becomes available.
    • Shield Generator. This module was intended for extremely dangerous jobs. It augments the parastatic field to the point where it provides a MDC of 15. Lost MDC is “regenerated” at a rate of one point per hour. Sadly, this limit is due to the limits of the fiber structure – not the module. This subsystem uses standard E-Clips (and has ports for two), each of which is good for 30 MDC points before being drained. The module will drain one first, and then indicate a need for replacement while using the other.
    • Thruster. This unit can provide a modest ion thrust, which the suit can direct as needed – providing excellent maneuverability under zero-gravity conditions. Sadly, the actual thrust provided is fairly small, so this is fairly useless under planetary conditions.
    • Water Reclamation. Originally used in space exploration, now mostly used in deserts. Recycles urine and other wastes – a prospect most users prefer to avoid if at all possible.
  • Other Data; The suits weigh about six pounds, but each module weighs about half a pound. On Rifts Earth smartclothes are usually only available in the British Isles – where the price varies drastically.

Federation-Apocalypse: Jarvian Mitchell

   Well, per another request, here’s another potential character for the Federation-Apocalypse game: Jarvian Mitchell, a Mechwarrior pilot from the Battle Zone in the Space-Fantasy realms of the First Circle.

   Jarvian Continue reading

d20 Future Items

   First up for today – and possibly last, depending on other activities – we have the d20 Mecha Design System from the IronWinds campaign. Unfortunately, this is a pdf download only: I just couldn’t get the formatting to work reasonably on the blog.

   Secondarily, since the library will be closed on Wednesday, and I expect that most of the players will have family commitments anyway, the Champions campaign will probably have to take a miss this week. If anyone does want to do something leave a comment: I could always play host.

   Since there are a few minutes after all, here’s the Federation-Apocalypse Factions, from one of the old player’s take on a rewrite of the d20 Federation Campaign.

The IronWind Campaign

   The first items for today are for the d20 Ironwinds campaign – a point-buy d20 Future military setting, where the characters were Mecha pilots attempting to keep the Hegemony – a quasi-religious fascist government – from exterminating the rest of the human race. The setting was loosely anime-based, primarily drawing on Robotech, Gundam, and and similar series. First up, here’s the IronWind Timeline, the Campaign Setup Sheet, and the Psychic Pilots sheet – a cribsheet on buying superhuman mecha piloting abilties in Eclipse: The Codex Persona.