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> Possessed foes, My group keep out! You know who you are...
FuelDrop
post Feb 27 2013, 03:36 AM
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Ok, here we go again!
It looks like I've finally got the chance to do some GMing (you know all those other threads that I've started about this? Every time something has come up and I've ended up a player. I'm kind of like an inverted CanRay!). The run is investigation (the group is keeping a low profile and trying for some semi-legal work after some flashy recent antics), tracking down a stolen holy book kept hidden by a local church (They've recently had a security shake-up, and their boss isn't sure who to trust any more). This book was taken by a cult who believe themselves to be the knights templar reborn, and who intend to seal the book away from the world. shortly after the PCs track them down another cult will attack and steal the book, intending to read it and summon some horrors for a lovecraftian apocalypse (AKA summoning Cthulhu.)

Now by the time the PCs track down this final cult they have already cracked open the book and, as a result, everything in the immediate area had been possessed by low-powered (force 2-3) spirits of assorted types. Tentacle mutations abound, though mostly hidden beneath lined cloaks... though seeing possessed dogs with many-eyed tentacles where their heads should be is going to call for composure checks.

Now as far as I know there are no official stats for the horrors, so I was going to use toxic spirits EG Abomination spirits, with most of the cult rocking a force 3 possession while the cult leader (The guy who opened the book) rocks out with a force 7. I was going to give the cult's guard dogs force 1-2 possessions as well, then use them as cannon fodder to slow the PCs down.

Thoughts or suggestions?

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BishopMcQ
post Feb 27 2013, 03:47 AM
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Read up on Inhabitation spirits (Flesh forms, true merges etc.) and Possession. The threshold to identify a Possessed creature is different than one which went through the Inhabitation merge.

Beyond that, I'd also look at the Strange Spirits chapter of Running Wild. Give them powers that feel appropriate and bump the physical stats to the level of threat that you want.
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FuelDrop
post Feb 27 2013, 03:48 AM
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QUOTE (BishopMcQ @ Feb 27 2013, 11:47 AM) *
Read up on Inhabitation spirits (Flesh forms, true merges etc.) and Possession. The threshold to identify a Possessed creature is different than one which went through the Inhabitation merge.

Thanks for the tip, will try to do that ASAP
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ShadowDragon8685
post Feb 27 2013, 04:14 AM
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My main thought is that I hope to hell the PCs are like, either all magicians, or otherwise loaded to go heavy - like, with steel lnyxes packing FA Panther ACs and shit. That much possession getting thrown around is going to be nuts, especially since that leader is going to have hardened armor 14.
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SpellBinder
post Feb 27 2013, 04:38 AM
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Don't know for sure, so why I ask. What about a Force Of Will attack on a possessed person?
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BishopMcQ
post Feb 27 2013, 04:48 AM
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As ShadowDragon points out, the leader is going to be hellaciously difficult to hurt with mundane weapons. Giving the Lovecraftian horrors an Allergy or Vulnerability will curtail that a bit due to the increased damage or the ability to bypass the Immunity. If this feels like too easy of a solution, you can just hide the knowledge in a mystery of sorts--basically it provides a Plan B for the team in case they don't have the mojo to go head on. Weapon foci, Killing Hands, and Combat spells also can bypass the Immunity to Normal Weapons.

Spellbinder -- Yeah, the Attack of Will (SM, p 94) says it works on spirits, to bypass ItNW, so it should work on possession, inhabitation, or materialization types.
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Dakka Dakka
post Feb 27 2013, 07:09 AM
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QUOTE (BishopMcQ @ Feb 27 2013, 05:48 AM) *
Spellbinder -- Yeah, the Attack of Will (SM, p 94) says it works on spirits, to bypass ItNW, so it should work on possession, inhabitation, or materialization types.
Yes, it bypasses ItNW, but it still is a melee attack, meaning that the spirit can roll his inflated reaction and Unarmed Combat against it. The damage is based on CHA and most combat oriented characters wn't have high CHA. MOst maneuvers and other melee goodies won't work. Don't bother.


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SpellBinder
post Feb 27 2013, 07:24 AM
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Yeah, I figured there'd be all the usual combat stuff involved. Was just making sure I was on the same track as others that it'd work on a spirit's possessed person instead of spirit's materialized form.
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Dakka Dakka
post Feb 27 2013, 07:37 AM
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QUOTE (SpellBinder @ Feb 27 2013, 08:24 AM) *
Yeah, I figured there'd be all the usual combat stuff involved. Was just making sure I was on the same track as others that it'd work on a spirit's possessed person instead of spirit's materialized form.
Whether possessed or inhabited there are no two entities. Vessel/host and spirit merge into a single entity.
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FuelDrop
post Feb 27 2013, 07:41 AM
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The group tends to go in heavy, particularly if they know they're going into a fight (It won't be hard to figure out with even basic recon). The cult leader is going to take an insane amount of damage to kill (Troll with rating 7 possession and lined cloak [lined coat] is throwing around 36 soak dice) but most of the cult are going to be a lot less problematic to deal with. (average humans with rating 3 spirits... even heavy pistols are powerful enough to punch through ITNW 6.)

I'm expecting several heavy weapons on the field, so unless my guess about player tactics is horribly out then the only way this will be a TPK is if the dice gods turn on them. However, the point is well taken and I'm going to limit the possessed beings by confining them to stay within 50 m of the book so that if the group is overwhelmed then they can bail without pursuit.

Edit: Most of the party is operating at 3 IPs, with the rigger packing 5! since the enemy only has 2 each that should be enough of an edge for the runners to hold their own.
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phlapjack77
post Feb 27 2013, 08:24 AM
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I think this NPC with super-high soak dice is a good test for your PCs. Rather than just dishing out raw physical damage, can they think outside the box? There could be multiple ways to take him down, from capsule rounds (narcojet/neurostun) to spells (manipulation/health/illusion) to melee techniques (nerve strike). This is assuming they get into combat with the big bad in the first place, and don't try other, more creative routes, like FAB or mana static or diplomancy or something.
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FuelDrop
post Feb 27 2013, 08:44 AM
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QUOTE (phlapjack77 @ Feb 27 2013, 04:24 PM) *
I think this NPC with super-high soak dice is a good test for your PCs. Rather than just dishing out raw physical damage, can they think outside the box? There could be multiple ways to take him down, from capsule rounds (narcojet/neurostun) to spells (manipulation/health/illusion) to melee techniques (nerve strike). This is assuming they get into combat with the big bad in the first place, and don't try other, more creative routes, like FAB or mana static or diplomancy or something.

Bingo. if they steal the book and get it more than 50 meters away from him then he'll be weakened for several rounds, then keel over. the book is key to all of it.
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phlapjack77
post Feb 27 2013, 08:54 AM
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QUOTE (FuelDrop @ Feb 27 2013, 04:44 PM) *
Bingo. if they steal the book and get it more than 50 meters away from him then he'll be weakened for several rounds, then keel over. the book is key to all of it.

Cool (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

I do want to say that I hope this isn't the only way to defeat him though. Puzzle-challenges can be really frustrating, as what's obvious to you might not be at all obvious to the players. Even so-called "obvious" clues can be overlooked and shouldn't doom the PCs to failure (imo)
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FuelDrop
post Feb 27 2013, 09:27 AM
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QUOTE (phlapjack77 @ Feb 27 2013, 04:54 PM) *
Cool (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

I do want to say that I hope this isn't the only way to defeat him though. Puzzle-challenges can be really frustrating, as what's obvious to you might not be at all obvious to the players. Even so-called "obvious" clues can be overlooked and shouldn't doom the PCs to failure (imo)

Well, outside of stealing or destroying the book there's excessive firepower (I know for a fact that the rigger has a HMG with 200 rounds of anti-tank ammo in her concealed base out of town, and heavy weapons troll... is a heavy weapons troll. Both of our mid-range gunfighters favor shotguns [With APDS loaded a shotgun doesn't need to get too lucky to punch through the cult leader's ITNW], and most of the group with close combat expertise should be able to either damage him [Heavy weapons troll with combat axe] or keep him locked in combat [Physical adept]), explosives, social engineering (IE gathering allies who're better equipped to deal with spirits), the book is just an extra weakness they can exploit. though if they destroy it they won't get paid...
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phlapjack77
post Feb 27 2013, 10:35 AM
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That sounds great! Disregard my previous comment then please (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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FuelDrop
post Feb 27 2013, 11:13 AM
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QUOTE (phlapjack77 @ Feb 27 2013, 06:35 PM) *
That sounds great! Disregard my previous comment then please (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

<Hal 9000 voice> I'm sorry, Jack, I'm afraid I can't do that </voice> Mainly because you inspired the idea in the first place. Throw stuff like that at me any time, it helps me make the game better!
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Summerstorm
post Feb 27 2013, 11:15 AM
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PC's are always stronger than you think. Yours already seem VERY powerful. Maybe ramp it up a notch *g*

I know that my group seriously murdered a Force 10 Yama King in like 2 seconds. (Not really - he is just playing with them) The Spirits can use their powers which cannot be resistet at those levels... but in brute Force they aren't that bad. (Except of course you load the vessels up with worn armour and such)

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Lionhearted
post Feb 27 2013, 03:22 PM
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I read the title as possessed toes, colour me disappointed (IMG:style_emoticons/default/frown.gif)
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