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One of my players has asked for a Phobia Quality for his character. I used the Allergy Quality as a template.

This is what I came up with as a first draft:

Uncommon – Conditions for the Phobia are rare – 2 points

Common – Stimulus shows up in everyday life – 7 points

Mild – 3 points – You are distracted by the stimulus and can’t rest easy until you are away from it. -2 penalty to all tests until removed from the stimulus.

Moderate – 8 points – You are extremely agitated by the presence of your fear-inducing condition. Make a Willpower + Logic (3) test to avoid freezing. If not frozen, you suffer a -3 dice penalty to all tests while in the area.

Severe – 13 points – You are totally petrified. Make a Willpower + Logic (4) test to avoid fleeing in a mad panic. You will do ANYTHING to escape the area. If the test is passed, you reluctantly remain and suffer a -4 penalty to all tests until the stimulus is removed.

Thoughts? Too nasty, or too easy? Thanks for any input.

We had a friend who had a phobia of grapefruits. Therefore, all of the enemies in our game had a grapefruit launcher. That ended his character pretty fast. The moral of the story is that sometimes phobias equal more build points. Usually when a character of mine has a fear of something, it was from a previous game. No points added.
In some of my SR 3 games Phobia was up there with Allergy, and Day Job for most abused flaws. You have to be really careful what you allow points for, and how many. The other side of the phobia flaw is that if you allow a severe phobia to a common item (say severe phobia of drones) so as the character becomes so dysfunctional as to severely inhibit game play, you have a problem too. Basically my advice is before you even allow phobias for points think about how it's going to affect the flow of your game for the whole group. I eventually outlawed edges and flaws all together because my players overabused them (either by never living up to there flaws or overplaying them at pointless times and disrupting the game)
stevebugge - Absolutely. Everything is pending my approval. We're ironing out the fine print on this particular character's phobia (a troll with a severe case of claustrophobia). We're aiming for a middle ground between "trolls being bigger than most everything and feeling cramped" to him "being used to being human sized cars and the like"...

When we come to a mutual agreement, the character can be approved.

That being said, how do the mechanics of the flaw look? Fair? Too easy?

Lord Ben
Too many points for it. Severe responce to something rare gives too many points. Very easy to twink.

Then again phobias always have potential. I ran for a Troll character once who was modeled after Mr T from the A-Team, with a severe phobia to airplane and helicoptors.
Seems good to me. I never had too much problem with the Phobia flaw...take it Uncommon, and you get a problem once in awhile. On the other side, of course the character doesn't get as many points to suck out of it. Take it severe, and they will be paying dearly for wanting those extra points. Hence, take a phobia if it FITS, NOT for the points...I, as a GM, am usually a bit more lean on a PC if i see that their flaws are taken for the character, and not just for the points. If someone tried to spring 'Severe Phobia to Ocular Drones' on me, i would have a gang whose main form of attack be Ocular Drones terrorizing their part of the sprawl. wink.gif

In real life, I have a Moderate phobia to anything in the Centipede family. Should I be in the SR world and an Awakened form of one came up to me, it would probably jump to 'Severe' and i would run screaming. (Not kidding. One time i was reading a monster manual that had a big picture of one, when i turned the page i nearly jumped off my bed and threw the book after trying to slam the book shut on it to kill it.)

A good point was made however about how sometimes edges and flaws are either so trivial they don't come up, or SO damn severe they disrupt the game(if a character had Severe Fear of Vehicles for instance....).

Funny thing about Allergies. They can get a bit munchy at times...but almost because they are also incredibly realistic. In real life, about 95% of people I know(including myself) are allergic to SOMETHING...sometimes rare and mild, sometimes common and severe, and everything in between. And sometimes more than one thing. I guess the realistic ones can in a way be the worst for abuse.
For Personality flaws, I never hand out bonus Build points. These flaws have to be roleplayed in order to be effective, and I don't intend to pay anyone for work they haven't done yet. I allow them, but in order to receive any benifit from them, you must roleplay them to my satisfaction. If you do, then I, as gamemaster, give you extra Karma for good roleplay.

So I suggest letting a player who wants to have a phobia just role play it, and you reward tehm with Karma for it. If they just want more build points, then they should look into different flaws, or bribing you wiht cash.

(Around here, 10 bucks will buy you a karma point.)
I like the idea of using the Allergy table for phobias as well.

In RL, I have a moderate phobia of crowds(not people, just large groups of them) which bleeds into mild claustrophobia.

If you took that sort of thing into the game, it could make for some interesting roleplaying.

Since you as GM get final okay on the character/flaw anyway, so the PC can't munchkin it more than you will allow, I say go for it!
For the sake of consistency with existing game mechanics, I'd use a Composure Test (which I believe is Willpower + Charisma) instead of a Willpower + Logic test.
emo samurai
In the Sixth World, wouldn't grapefruits be pretty expensive? It kinda is post-apocalyptic and everything.
QUOTE (emo samurai)
In the Sixth World, wouldn't grapefruits be pretty expensive? It kinda is post-apocalyptic and everything.

Are you talking about real grapefruits or lab created ones?
It's not a full post-apoc, it's sorta of an "apoc light."
I agree with elbows, all in all, your phobia mechanics look fine.

The abuse thingy is a GM approval issue. mainly.


I had always felt that the rules for allergy and phobia should be one and the same, a phobia being a mentally induced allergy to a object/subject/stimuli. That looks like what you did here also, glad to see I'm not totally crazy.
Yep, mechanics look like what I've basically ruled. Since most phobias are irrational things I like the use of logic to resist it.

On phobia's of common things back in SR3 I had a pc in a game I ran with phobia spirits, after a run in with the mojave desert. Oh how I laughed when the pc surged and became dual natured...
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