Sunday, May 26, 2013

AFF monster - alien

Here is another AFF monster - an alien.
From here by +Ekud.



LOCATION:  Anywhere.

REACTION:  Hostile.





LUCK:  7



SKILLS:  Awareness (6), Sneaking (6), Strength (6), Dodge (6), Acrobatics (6), Jump (6), Climb (6).

TALENTS:  Dark seeing, Combat Reactions, Fast Healer, Fleet Footed, Hawkeye, Light Sleeper, Strongarm, Magical Resistance, Clearsight, Lightning Strike

WEAPON:  Large claw.

ARMOUR:  Chitinous layer (as monster heavy armour).


Acid blood:  If an alien is killed, it will explode acid all over the place.  If it was killed in melee combat, then the character who landed the killing blow will take 2-12 stamina points of damage from the acid.  All other characters fighting it take 1-6 damage.

Capture:  Aliens will try not to kill all opponents.  If it renders anyone unconscious, it will drag them back to its lair where it will begin a process that will turn them into alien eggs over the course of 1-6 days.

Life cycle:  An alien will start out as an egg that will not hatch until someone is nearby.  Then a facehugger will shoot out of the egg and try to attach itself to a character at lightning speed (the facehugger has a skill of 5, a stamina of 2 and can move very fast.  It requires a dodge roll at -4 to dodge it).  If it attaches to someone then it will stay on their face for 2-12 hours before falling off dead.  The host seems to have made a full recovery.  After 1-6 hours, however, a baby alien (skill 5 stamina 2, super fast movement) will shoot out of the hot's chest, killing them and run off.  In 1-6 hours, it will have grown into a fully grown alien.


  1. Stuart, in your games of AFF do you stat out all the monsters/NPCs as full characters, Luck, Skills and all? I figure that would be one way to deal with the fact that SKILL 8, Sword 6 (effective SKILL 14) is only 340 experience points (and a minimum of four adventures) out of the reach of a starting character.

    We're due to start playing The Crown of Kings campaign next week (hopefully) - well, there will be a prologue adventure or two - and I think I'll keep the monsters/NPCs simple - SKILL/STAMINA + Special Abilities, but will tweak the advancement system (probably by making it more expensive to advance skills to higher 'levels'.

  2. I see what you're saying - a power gamer would certainly be the world's best warrior very soon. I like giving my NPCs full stats just for flavour but I also agree with not giving NPCs everyhitn if they are just going to be there for combat for 1 scene. It is more interesting for them to have some talent or other tactic beyond just skill + combat skill too.

    Looking at the advancement system again, it does look a bit broken. As you say, although you can only increase each skill or characteristic once per adventure, a character can start with skill 7, sword 2 and have skill 8 sword 6 with 4 adventures. Even with only the recommended 50 XP per adventure, they will be skill 7 sword 5 after 3 adventures.

    I think the skill increase cost is quite cheap considering it is effectively +1 to all your skills too.

    Maybe the cost of skills can be changed - how about just 10 xp to learn a new skill, but then 30 for 2 points, 60 for 3, 100 for 4, 150 for 5 and 210 for 6. That might sound a lot, but 3 points is generally considered fully trained and 4 is considered master (AFF core rules pg 25) so getting 4 or more points in a special skill should be hard.

  3. I like your thinking.

    I had been thinking of 'interpreting' the rules as written that advancing a special skill required XP to the value of 10x the new 'effective' skill score. So someone with SKILL 5 who wanted to get to go from City Lore 2 to 3 would need 80XP, but someone with SKILL 12 who wanted to make the same increase in City Lore would need 150XP.

    This might look like it punishes the high SKILL characters, but then the SKILL 12 guy already has an effective City Lore skill of 14, while the SKILL 5 scholar has only an effective City Lore skill of 7, 8 after his 'cheap' increase.

    I must say that I've only run one-offs with AFF2e so far, and we'll see where we go with the PCs we create for Crown of Kings.

    But I will say, I'm not the person who should complain about too rapid advancement. When we've been playing classic D&D (or their clones and simulacra) I have halved the XP cost per level in order to give the players some sense of advancement - 'when I were a lad' we'd play all day at the weekend, now we're adults we play for a couple of hours once a week at best!

    1. I like that method too. The cost to raise skill should also be comparable as then people would just wait until they had 160 xp to go to skill from 7 to 8 (and therefore raise all their special skills) rather than spend 180xp to raise 2 skills from effectively being 8 to effectively being 9. I had the wacky idea of the cost of raising skill being the cost of raising all special skills by 1 point + new skill x 10 but that might make it obscenely expensive.

  4. That's why I had the idea of Special Skill points increasing the likelihood of Crtical Rolls. One Skill point and you Critical on double six, two points and you critical on double five as well, etc. Six skill points and you don't fumble on a Double One.

    This does mean that Skill 7 plus Swords 2 should be beat Skill 8 plus Swords 1, which is fine by me.

    This could easily be extended to all Skills, although the numbers would need to be reversed when Testing Skills.

    1. That's a good idea. It gives the idea that specialised training actually allows you to do something better than someone who isn't trained, no matter how naturally dextrous, intelligent and skillful they are. It reminds me of Wrath of Khan. Even though Khan is a genetically engineered superhuman, he isn't well trained enough in ship to ship combat to win his battle with Kirk.

    2. Oooh, I could do AFF stats for Khan.