Home > Uncategorized > Zak’s questions prompt confession. Plus – what’s missing from Carcosa

Zak’s questions prompt confession. Plus – what’s missing from Carcosa

January 19, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

So first, Zak’s 23 questions – and noisms’ responses – provoked some deep soul-searching in me. I find I can conceal the truth from you no longer. You see, I’m really not so much a gamer as an ex-gamer. Worse, this here blog is what James Maliszewski has called the most decadent activity imaginable: it’s me talking about games rather than gaming. With all the attendant implications that I really don’t know what I’m talking about, I’m just blowing hot air, and so on.

I hang my head. If you want to just go, now, I’ll understand. I actually haven’t gamed at all since, um, 2002? The last time I ran anything at all was 2000 and the last time I ran anything semi-regularly… 1995 or so.

The good news is, I should be playing again for the first time in a decade tomorrow, provided the internet gods permit. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I barely remember any rules from anything, having always been pretty much a free-forming improv queen.

Noisms wrote about gaming being his secret shame. It’s mine, too, but not gaming was also my secret shame. Phew, feels good to get that cleared up… ahem…

Still here? I appreciate it. I’ll try to do better, promise.

So. I bought Carcosa! And I was surprised and confused by what it contained and did not contain! But among all the startling do-it-yourself, slacker! omissions, one stood out for me:
why and how would you choose a colour for your character?

So here, in direct contravention of SOPA and PIPEWEED and all they stand for, is my answer: the Men and Monsters Type Matchup Table.

Our familiar 13 types of Men are joined by their not-so-good buddies, the Amphibious Ones (or “frogs” for short), Deep Ones, Space Aliens (in trad. grey) and Mi-Go (who are strangely not so smart in this iteration of their story – strap on those brain cases, guys!). The table tells you how much damage each of these types will do to the others using sorcery, psionics, contests of raw will or any other means that doesn’t come in ultratech or battleaxe form. So for instance jale men can pretty much laugh at purple men with impunity, since they’ll only suffer half damage from their attacks, but they’d better be careful around blues, greens and whites, who all inflict double damage. And thus we have a reason for some folks to team up with others, or tolerate them around the old watering hole, and maybe some basis either for genocidal colour-wars or a new era of mutual understanding… against the oranges (misspelled oranj here, because the font didn’t work any smaller).

But what happens in the black squares? Glad you asked. Any time an attack of this type hits, roll 2d6:

2 – not only the particular creature attacked but also all other creatures of the same type in 3d6 yards radius receive the same effect (good or bad)
3 – the attack rebounds upon the attacker, at double strength
4 – the attack goes through at triple strength
5 – no effect
6-8 – attack goes through as normal
9 – defender becomes preternaturally slippery – AC and dodge improved radically. Attacker moves as if in treacle. Lasts 1d3 rounds
10 – bizarre weather effect (tornado of feathers, eyeballs) sweeps attacker and defender up and deposits them 2d6 yards away, or on a 2 or 12, that many yards straight up
11 – attacker and defender exchange bodies. Nobody else notices
12 – attacker suddenly realises defender is his long-lost soul brother. Defender unaffected

  1. January 19, 2012 at 3:48 pm

    It must be bizarre to be a deep one. Presumably, you grow up around other deep ones, occasionally fighting them. And then one day it’s time to set aside your childish inter-deep-one squabbles and head out into the world to cause some trouble – and now you discover that everything in the world is extremely durable compared to your… littermates?

  2. January 19, 2012 at 9:08 pm

    You horrible, dirty liar. I hope you burn in hell.

    Just kidding. I was also an ex-gamer once, just participating in that decadent activity like you were, until about two years ago. These things can be reversed. Like alcoholism.

    • January 20, 2012 at 10:44 am

      Exactly. Just like you don’t cure alcoholism – you’re always just one drink away from going back – you can’t cure being a gamer. At least in my experience. Fortunately, there are much worse vices.

  3. January 19, 2012 at 11:40 pm

    Don’t feel so bad. I’m a semi-retired gamer.
    I haven’t played anything in a long time, but I still enjoy reading games and blogging about them.
    Some day I will pick it back up and start playing again.

  4. Charlatan
    January 21, 2012 at 5:51 am

    Good luck with G+ gaming! If you ever find yourself in NYC, the Mule Abides crew will find you a game.

  5. January 23, 2012 at 7:34 am

    It looks similar to the way Pokemon attacks apparently work.

    The Snake-Men ‘catching them all’ and training them to fight each other actually fits the setting pretty well.

  1. January 21, 2012 at 12:26 am

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