Remmick, Dexter Blain

by Pete Betts

STR 29
REF 67
INT 78
WIL 53
CON 55
MOV 48
DEX 73

Sex: Male
Race: White
Nationality: American
Native Language: English
Age: 39
Agent Number: 691M
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – Some, Loyalty – Some, Passion – High, Piety – None, Sanity – High, Selfishness – None
Advantages: Acting Ability (2), Double Jointed (2), Obscure Knowledge (3), Toughness (4)
Disadvantages: Drug Addiction (1), Disavowed (3), Ego Signature (2), Enemy – KGB (2), Vindictiveness – Russians (2)
Skills: Acting (2), Basic Firearms (0), Basic Liberal Arts (0), Basic Melee (0), Basic Science (0), Basic Tool Use (0), Carpentry (0), Climbing (0), Concealment (0), Disguise (2), Driving/Automobile (0), Escape Artist (0), First Aid (0), Lip Reading (0), Lockpicking (0), Photography (0), Pickpocketing (0), Pistol (2), Radio Operator (0), Shotgun (0), Sleight of Hand (0), Social Chameleon (0), Stage Magic (0), Sub-machine Gun (0), Surveillance (2), Swimming (0), Throwing (0), Language – Polish (1), Language – Russian (3)

Background: Born in 1961, Dexter is 6’ tall with brown/blonde hair and blue eyes. He is from a circus entertaining family with his father being a famous magician. His father, a Polish national, met his wife whilst in the US where they married and had Dexter. Due to this, Dexter is very proud of his Polish-American heritage. Whilst on a European tour both parents were killed in an aeroplane accident, when a Russian MiG 27 shot down the airliner they were in over disputed airspace. Dexter, aged 15, was at boarding school at the time and has hated Russians with a passion ever since. Orion recruited Dexter when he was at university in Colorado. His natural acting ability and flair for disguise made him a prime candidate for surveillance training – his cover being that of a stage magician. More recently he had helped in the establishment of the Orion San Francisco office. At one stage Dexter had a fear of flying. His Orion team-mates have managed to cure him of his problem, but in the process have addicted him to tranquillisers. Additionally, Dexter’s ego signature is a playing card with the Magic Circle symbol on the reverse. Whilst on an infiltration mission, Dexter made some poor choices where white supremacists were concerned. This resulted in several deaths and the destruction of property. Dexter is now on the disavowed list and very much alone.

Phoenix, Jason

by William Althaus

STR 50
REF 65
INT 70
WIL 45
CON 45
MOV 58
DEX 68

Sex: Male
Race: White
Nationality: American
Native Language: English
Age: 24
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – Some, Sanity – Total, Passion – Some, Loyalty – High, Selfishness – Low, Piety – Low
Advantages: Contacts Everywhere (2), Eye-Hand Co-ordination (3), Sixth Sense (1)
Disadvantages: Ego Signature – Phoenix Pins (2), Code of Honor – Always defend your loved ones no matter what (Moral Qualms), never get mad, get even (Vengeful), the mission comes first (void when it is in conflict with #1) (1), Dependant – Amanda Dana Logan, wife (2), Enemy – Penny Scargo (1), Secret – assigned to find a Web mole, must maintain cover) (1)
Skills: Acting (0), Basic Firearm (0), Basic Melee (0), Basic Tool Use (0), Bureaucratics (0), Climbing (0), Disguise (0), Driving/Motorcycle (1), Fine Arts – Jewellery Appraising (0), Knife (0), Lockpicking (0), Music – Saxophone (0), Oriental Martial Arts – Arnis (Attack/Defend, Surprise Action, Vital Area) (3), Photography (0), Pistol (1), Safecracking (0), Security Systems (0), Social Chameleon (0), Stealth (0), Surveillance (1), Sword (1), Throwing (0)

Background: To ask Jason about his family you’ll get the same answer: “Don’t know, don’t care.” Found abandoned as a newborn at Our Lady of Mercy Orphenage in Des Moines, Iowa; he has made no attempt to discover his origins. At an early age he discovered a nack for picking locks and managed to break into the pantry for the assorted goodies that he shared with his friends. At the age of 11 he ran away from the Orphnage and hit the road and never looked back. For at least a year he lived off the spoils of his exploits, pawned watchs and walets. He made his way across the midwest, from Chicago and finally ending up in Ontario, Canada. He took up residence in an abandoned hotel and started to make a living as a thief. In his spair hours Jason read book upon book at the Ontario Libary (he sweet talked is way for a libary card). Here he chose his last name: Phoenix, after the mythical bird. He managed not to get caught until his path ran across a retired 50 year old English catburgler named James Connor. Connor was living in Canada after escaping US Federal Marshals on a false posession charge. He met up with the young rogue after Phoenix burglerized his hotel and stole his portable TV. He tracked Phoenix back to his make-shift hide-out. He was impressed with the amount of loot that Jason had aquired and was impressed when the youth gave back the stolen TV. Connor took the young rogue under his wing and began training him to be one of the best catbruglers of all time. At the tender age of 14 Phoenix began his 8-year carrier as a catburgler. Connor was his control, keeping the impetious youth under control (Phoenix loves to annoy his advacaries). Interpol began the infamous ‘Phoenix File’, called by the youths ability to shed his idenity and get away scott free and for the little bird-shaped pins found at the loaction of the robberies. Top invetigator Elliot Scargo was assigned to lead the investigation. Phoenix reveled in annoying Scargo by playing tricks, much against Connor’s wishes. An example: he would send notes to Scargo about his latest job and then rob the place across the street, all under Scargo’s nose. When Connor died of Colon Cancer when Phoenix was 17, the boy went all out and plunged into downward spiral of high-risk jobs. From robbing the German Embassy of important documents in Paris to hitting the local crimelords in Hong Kong for the proceeds of a Kickboxing tourney. Worst his little feud with Scargo took off to new hights when Phoenix totally destroyed his credit raiting. The taunts from Phoenix and his actions also took it’s toll on the frenchmans’ sanity. During a simple musuem robbery, a tip made it’s way to Scargo and he was waiting there to arrest Phoenix. After Phoenix resisited, Scargo began to open fire on the rogue and a fellow Interpol agent. Irishman Sean McCoy was wounded by Scargo. He would have been killed if not for the quick actions of Phoenix whom risked his own life to pull McCoy to safety. This was the straw that broke 2 donkeys backs. For Scargo, it almost led to his unemployment. Interpol re-evaluated the status of the ‘Phoenix File’ and downgraded it’s priority. They believed that it could not be one person whom was doing the crimes, but a large group of copycats. For Phoenix, the near death of an innocent by his actions forced him ot re-evaluate his life. He became best friends with Sean McCoy and started to slow down his activities. Interpol almost closed the case several times but Scargo had some dwindling influance to keep it open. For the last 4 years, he would only accept high-prices jobs where the risks of his exposure were a minimum. At this time both Orion and WEB had an interest in Phoenix (WEB had actually employed Phoenix for a few robberies, but Phoenix was unaware of it). It wasn’t until an assignment in Russia that he learned of the secret war between WEB and Orion from a cashe of Orion files he stole from a deep-cover operative. He turned the tables on his WEB employers and turned over a treasure trove of WEB documents that shut down a elaborate drug smuggling scheme. Director Cameron Smith took a great liking to the polite young man and offered him a deal. “Join Orion and we’ll get Interpol off your back.” Jason lept at the chance to finally do something good. While WEB offered a consideralbe amount of money, Orion offered a new life. He accepted a assignement by Director Smith to help track down the source of the leak in Orion, the files that Phoenix had recovered were highly classifed. Phoenix only answers to Smith while on this assignment. He chose to have his duboius reputation be his key, by making the mole believe that Phoenix was a selfish, unrepentant, self-serving SOB that WEB would leap to aquire. So far he has narrowed the selection of the mole to a few choice canidates in Orion HQ. While on assignment he met and fell in love with actress Amanda Logan. Amanda was the goddaughter to a fellow Orion agent Bill Klinger and was not aware of Phoenix’s affiliation to the orginzation until much later. To Amanda, Jason was just a handsome young man that was treating her like the most important person in his life. Their relationship nearly ended when he confided in her that he was a secret agent, but Amanda’s own familarity with the war between Orion and Web made her just love him more. Amanda gave Jason and her Uncle Bill an ultimatim: “Y’all behave and come back alive or I’ll kill ya.” Needless to say, both Bill and Jason agreed. After a year-long courtship, the two married in a private ceremony with their close friends and family. But after the kiss a manical madman with a affinity for martal arts kidnapped Amanda and challenged Phoenix to come and get her at his lethal martal arts trournment (Phoenix had dishonored him in a Kendo duel… the guy wasn’t very stable) and also the Orion field team that he was assigned to. The Orion agents managed to escape and eliminate the oppostion (Phoenix killed the ring-leader in a solo sword duel). Amanda was freed and Phoenix lost his long-time advacary Scargo. Scargo had collected enough circemstatal evidence on a old burgerly job that Phoenix had done while a youth and had a short time before the statue of limitation was going to expire. He watched the wedding being torn apart and Amanda kidnapped which made Scargo see the youth in a new light. Scargo destroyed the warrant and helped Phoenix, until he was murdered in the barbaric martal arts ring and nobody was able to stop it. The death of Scargo has been another turning point in Phoenix’s life. He feels greatly responsible and has tried to make amends to Scargo’s daughter, Penny. But she was just as obsessed as her father and has become a tolerable thorn in his side on occasion. He has opened a Security Consultating Firm with the help of his long time friend Sean McCoy, Oracle Securities. It has been a sucessful venture for the burgler and retired Interpol agent/Orion operatives (Sean is a Orion agent).

Yeesh! What a month!
While most of my fellow flatfoots spend their 30 day of rest and relaxation doing what their hearts desire, I have to work. First, Lawyers! Man do I hate those guys. There I was in my nice office at Orcale when my partners in crime (Sean and Han) burst in saying that the insurance company that hired us to track down some stolen jewels won’t pay us! You have no idea how much red tape I had to go through just to see a frickin’ secratary! Thank gawd that I had a keen mind and realized that I didn’t need to fill out Form J-21 since our contract with the company clearly said that all we needed to do was send in Form R-33 to the Accounts department and we got our reward. Now, after that near miss we had to check on the security preperations at the San Christobal Musieum of Art. They finally got the that wing rebuilt (how was I suposed to know that White Phosperhous and FlashBang genenades were packaged in the similar looking containers! Thank gawd Zim wasn’t assigned to that detail or I’d never hear the end of it). Three days of tests and we finally got the prelimarny system up and running then it DIED! Sean was royally toked and Han blamed a short in the newly installed wirering. It took two weeks to sort out that one. Well, during all of this Amanda wanted to go do some rock climbing. Well… that was fun. After the security system in the musium was fixed we spent a few days just climbing over the rocks near the beach at Lookout Point (ya know, that spot ya said that I shoud propose to her at). She then proceeded to tell me that she gonna try for a part in some HBO TV movie and needed to fly back to LA for the final interview. Well, I was needing to look up some old friends in that area anyway and I tagged along. Long story short Amanda got the part and we hit hte clubs for a night on the town. I wasn’t really in the mood but Amanda wanted to dance away some of the extra calories she had eaten since I was away (I trip over a stack of pizza boxes and chinese take-out containters when I got home!). Basicly after the first 2 clubs I was tired and I didn’t try to stand out in the crowd and let Amanda have her fun. Then we got an unexpected visitor, Penny Scargo. Man, I thought she was dead! Apparently somebody tried to run her down and she kept murmering my name… was a nut! She said some rather negative items to Amanda while I was getting my V-Rod out of the clutches of the valley parking attendent and Amanda decked her! Now she have a nice restraining order of about 100 feet to keep her away form Miss Scargo. Well Bill, my plane leaves in about 4 hours and Amanda wants to get there early. We’ll meet ya in the Shady Pine bar around 5-ish.
-Jay
ps- my back is still hurting form that last throw ya did to me. Did ya finally get your advancement for your black belt or am I gonna be your test dummy again? Oh, and hows the hand. ;p

Petal, Clarissa

by Dave McAlister

STR 44
REF 77
INT 52
WIL 50
CON 52
MOV 61
DEX 65

Sex: Female
Race: White
Nationality: American
Native Language: English
Age: 21
Agent Number: 685M
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – Low, Sanity – High, Passion – High, Loyalty – High, Selfishness – None, Piety – Low
Advantages: Attractive Appearance (3)
Disadvantages: Moral Qualms – never shoots if children are in the way
Skills: Basic Firearms, Basic Melee, Concealment, Disguise, Knife, Pick Pocket, Pistol (3), Rifle – Assault (2), Shadowing (2), Submachine Gun, Survival – Streets (2), Throwing

Background: Born 21 years ago, Clarissa was an orphan by the time she was 2 years old (her parent’s died in a car crash). Consequently she had an unhappy childhood, continually moving from one foster family and city to another. At the age of 10 she ran away to New York. Living on the streets for the next 6 years, she learnt how to handle herself and managed to stay away from the drugs and gang scene. A couple of months after her 18th birthday she started working for Mentex Technologies. At first she was unaware of their connection to Orion but, after an intensive background check, was slowly allowed to see more and more information regarding the Foundation. Once she was aware of the full story, Clarissa applied to become a field agent. Her final week of training took her to the Chicago Field Training Centre were she was part of a team of 6 would-be field agents. Their task was to put their newly learnt skills into practice. The target’s for this exercise were the heads of the various teams of the San Francisco Regional Office. It was during this exercise that Clarissa decided to practice her seduction techniques on Zak McClusky. However, Zak was also the target of a real-life assassination attempt at the time and, believing that Clarissa was involved in this attempt punched her and knocked her out – unfortunately he also broke her jaw! Despite this injury, Clarissa decided that she would like to work with Zak and, after her recovery, requested to be assigned to the San Francisco office. This request was accepted and upon her arrival was made deputy head of the team. Due to Zak’s sudden “resignation” Clarissa has been promoted to Head of the Rapid Reaction Team pending a decision on what happens next.

Osc, Chensor Exantra Erron

by Winter Heart

STR 38
REF 63
INT 74
WIL 55
CON 45
MOV 50
DEX 68

Sex: Male
Race: White
Nationality: American
Native Language: English
Age: 24
Psychological Profile: Unknown
Advantages: Acute Touch (1), Language Ability (2), Musical Ability (1), Sensuality (2)
Disadvantages: Dependent (3), Lost Dependents (3)
Skills: Basic Firearms (0), Basic Melee (0), Basic Science (0), Basic Tool Use (0), Chemistry (0), Cryptography (0), Driving/Off-Road (0), Electronics (0), Fine Arts (0), First Aid (0), French (0), Music – Saxaphone (0), Music – Singing (0), Navigation (0), Occult Knowledge (0), Oriental Martial Arts – Hapkido (0), Photo Analysis (0), Pilot – 1-Engine (0), Pistol (0), SCUBA Diving (0), Small Craft Handling (0), Social Chameleon (0), STANO (0)

Background: Ens’s life was simple, nights at the clubs playing his music and weekends with the parents. He had long ago given up any hopes at schooling himself further, he just couldn’t seem to settle on any one topic, hence he held a wide and varyed field of knowledge but no one specialty. That is until he got the call midmorning of a Monday. His mood was tense to say the least, he had slept only a few hours before being woke by the shrilling noise. Grabbing up the phone he spat out his hello only to be informed of the death of his parents and disappearance of his young sister. That was the last normal instance his life was to know…

Appearance: Square jawed with a high set forehead which is crowned with a widows peak. His hair is dark mahognay shot through with sun scorched highlights of a deep red. It just skims the top of his shoulders and is always worn loose. His skin is pale as death, which causes his eye to stand out on his clean shaven face. Of medium build he is fit and well formed, attesting to many hours spent caring for his body.

Favourites: Colour – wine red. Music – the classics, but mostly the Blues/Jazz. Food – anything with a bite, zest, or rush of flavour. Books – Galec Poetry, Biren, Ann Rice, Stephen King… to name a few. Expressions – “Ah but that ruins most the fun.”

Habits: Drinks – Brandy warm flavored with cinnimon (only socially or one an evening). Hobbies – Chess, Sculpture, Sketch, Saxaphone, Composing, Singing.

Background
Hometown: New Orleans.
Education: Attended 2 years of University before setting out.
Religion: Athiest

Family
Mother: Kendle Anne Osc nee Prichard, Passed on.
Father: Alexander Christoph Osc, Passed on.
Siblings: Victoria Elisabeth Osc, sister, 6 years of age. Been missing for a year and a half. Her body was never recovered from the sight of the car accident that left both parents dead. Though several other sets of unidentifable treads where seen both arriving at and leaving the scene.

General
Favorite clothing: Jeans, leather jacket, he strives for elegance but often falls short.
Least favorite clothing: Stuffy monkey suits.
Jewelry: A silver celtic cross on a silver chain looped round his neck (was his mothers).
Other accessories: Basic wardrobe.
Drives: 1967 StingRay (grey/silver in colour) Plates Saxyone.

Neida, Hiroshi

by Raymond Benson

This character originally appeared in the James Bond 007 Game Scenario “You Only Live Twice II – Back of Beyond” and has been converted by Dave McAlister

STR 55
REF 70
INT 60
WIL 65
CON 65
MOV 63
DEX 65

Sex: Female
Race: Oriental
Nationality: Japanese
Native Language: Japanese
Age: 26
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – Total, Sanity – High, Passion – Total, Loyalty – High, Selfishness – High, Piety – None
Advantages: Attractive Appearance (3), Sixth Sense (3)
Disadvantages: Enemy – Zak McClusky (4), Enemy – John Walker (4)
Skills: Basic Firearms (0), Basic Melee (0), Basic Science (0), Biology/Botany/Zoology (2), Cryptography (1), Disguise (2), Demolitions (1), Driving/Automobile (3), Driving/Motorcycle (3), Electronics (1), Fine Arts (0), Interrogation (2), Lock Picking (2), Martial Arts (5), Medicine (2), Oriental Martial Arts – Jujitsu (Blindfighting, Instant Stand, Throw, Multiple Attacks, Vital Areas) (5), Pilot/1-Engine (1), Pistol (2), Safecracking (2), Social Chameleon (4), Stealth (5), Throwing (0), Language – English (5)

Background: To all appearances, Hiroshi Neida is just a lovely Japanese woman who works as a receptionist and secretary. This unassuming façade hides a very deadly killing machine. Hiroshi is a ninja, as was her father. He worked for the Yakuza, a Japanese crime syndicate. Tradition dictates that the training should be given to the first son, but there were only daughters, of which, Hiroshi was the oldest. Hiroshi was an apt pupil and, by the time she was eighteen, was her father’s equal. Hiroshi’s father, tired of his association with criminals, attempted to break away, but no one breaks away from the Yakuza. Realising how difficult it would be to kill a ninja, the Yakuza bombed the house, killing all the family except Hiroshi. Hiroshi, fearing for her life, fled to Australia where she worked whilst going to university. At the university, she was approached by Web who, aware of her background, offered her protection. Accepting their offer, Hiroshi began work as a laboratory assistant with the Australian Environmental Research Laboratory (AERL). However, the job was merely a cover and Hiroshi was soon acting as an assassin for Web in Australia. Some months ago, Hiroshi was seconded to another Web operation in Australia to act as a bodyguard. Unfortunately, Orion had already sent some agents to investigate. These agents were Zak McClusky and John Walker. In a daring night-time assault, they were able to infiltrate the Web operation and shut it down. In the process they accidentally killed the person Hiroshi was protecting, thus losing her honour. If order to regain her honour Hiroshi tracked both them back to America and attempted, unsuccessfully, to kill them. It was during this attempt that Zak McClusky shot her, at point-blank range, and believed her to be dead. However her body was never recovered and her current whereabouts are unknown. To protect her identity, Hiroshi carries out her assassinations in the traditional ninja outfit. Even Web will not use her real name when speaking of her; they refer to her as “Hiroshima”.

McGyver, Angus

by John Barber

STR 60
REF 51
INT 51
WIL 58
CON 55
MOV 56
DEX 51

Sex: Male
Race: White
Nationality: Scottish
Native Language: English
Age: 27
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – Some, Sanity – High, Passion – Some, Loyalty – High, Selfishness – Low, Piety – Low
Advantages: Mechanical/Technical Aptitude
Disadvantages: Unmistakable Appearance
Skills: Basic Firearms (0), Basic Mechanic (0), Basic Melee (0), Basic Tool Use (0), Computer Technician (0), Driving/Automobile (2), Driving/Boat (0), Driving/Truck (0), Electronics (1), First Aid (0), Pistol (1), SCUBA Diving (0), Swimming (0)

Background: Born in Dunfermline, Scotland in 1973. Graduated from high school and worked for father’s engineering company. Left after 6 years to follow a career in computing, but got bored and went back to Dad’s company after 1 year. Has an unmistakable scar from below left eye to bottom of left ear following a minor disagreement about the virtues of Glasgow Rangers. Drives a BMW 316 which was a 21st birthday present. Picked up his military type background from 5 years in the Black Watch TA. The time between missions was a time to rest and heal for Angus, or at least it should have been. He decided to fly down to meet up with some old ex-army friends who now ran a tourist venture in Belize. Having served there with the British Army they had seen a opportunity for them to fill. They ran a fairly successful scuba diving school, taking the tourists out to the keys to swim round the coral. Angus thought this too good an opportunity to miss and learned the basics of scuba diving, speed boat driving and a bit of first aid, figuring he should know this after the damage he took in Ottawa. At the quieter moments, he and his mates would practice shooting tin cans. This and the shooting practice he had on the last mission, his pistol skill improves. After 3 weeks, Angus returned to Orion and books himself on a driving course, improving his car driving skills.

DM Props

by Dru Pagliassotti

In the corner of my living room is an innocuous-looking cedar chest that I snagged from my parents when I moved out of the house. During the week it sits there quietly gathering dust, holding up a snarling gargoyle and a vase of dead roses. But during the weekend the gargoyle and roses are banished to the corner, and the lid comes up to reveal my array of gaming props.

The chest is crammed to the top with six brown plastic cases of painted miniatures (some are my own, some belong to a friend who’s taken to storing his miniatures at “gaming central”—my house) and two small grey plastic cases of miniatures (belonging to yet a third friend); three large rolled-up battle mats (two hex, one square) and one smaller mat (square); several handmade balsa-wood houses; a stack of six “dice boxes”; a basket filled with water-soluble markers and a variety of dice bags; a shoe box filled with painted plaster “boulders,” several pewter monsters, and an oversized lead dragon; a straw basket filled with small square plastic chits, a bag of cut-out green paper “trees,” an egg timer, and two oversized six-sided dice; and a third straw basket filled with little rubber animals. There’s no room in the chest for our small dry-erase whiteboard and pens, which are crammed in the den closet, or my sack of children’s wooden blocks, which is under my bed….

I was taught to play AD&D as a paper-and-pencil game. In high school I never used miniatures, never used battlemats, never used anything but occasionally a picture cut from a magazine to illustrate my characters. Not until college was I indoctrinated into the idea of using DM props. Since then, my collection of props has grown. Now I don’t know how I ever played without battlemats and miniatures, at least. The ability to draw the room, to place the characters and NPCs, seems indispensible to the game. Not only does it provide a center for players’ attention, but it brings a trace of objectivity to the game—no longer do I, as DM, arbitrate whether a person is in range of a spell or not. Now the players can count the squares and decide for themselves. This never mattered in my high-school games, but since then I’ve met plenty of “games lawyers” who will challenge my every ruling. I’ve come to love using props and items that make the scene easier to visualize, but the plastic “room sets” sold at some gaming stores are just too expensive! As a result, my players and I have cobbled together quite an array of handmade odds and ends….

A balsa-wood house with a removable roof often works well as our party’s Leomund’s Secure Shelter when it comes under attack, or as a house when the group is laying siege to a place. I’ve also created balsa-wood tombstones for graveyard adventures and use big wooden buttons as tables for bar fights. Wooden blocks work well as makeshift houses for fights in city streets, providing both an outline of the streets and something to put the miniatures on when the characters are lurking on the roofs. Gauze rags wrapped with quick-drying plaster bandages, and then painted with stone-colored fleck spraypaint, make great boulders for outdoor terrain. Cut-out green paper circles in varying sizes work well as trees or bushes—because they’re flat, it’s easy to place a miniature on top of one to indicate that the character is hiding within the tree branches. Using these paper trees also makes it easy to show the existence of cover … or of what’s going to start burning when the mage starts throwing fireballs around. Little rubber animals are much cheaper than lead miniatures, and I often pull out the rubber snakes, ants, or crocodiles for monsters in my Al Qadim game.

Educational stores provide a wealth of useful knicknacks for gamers. My favorite are the clear plastic squares used to illustrate counting problems on overhead projectors. I found a great set of clear squares numbered 1 to 99 that I use for mass combat situations (watch my players wince when I empty the plastic bag of these chits over the battlefield!). We use the colored squares to indicate the presence of spells, placing them beneath the miniature. A red square under a miniature means the character has a Stoneskin spell up. Clear means Invisibility, blue means Fly, green means Polymorph … and as the spells come down, we pull the squares out and toss them back into the basket. Some of my friends use poker chips for this, which stack nicely but come in a more limited selection of colors and are considerably thicker. For our high-level campaign, we’ve discarded the use of chips and resorted to using a whiteboard to write our defensive spell array on … a couple of thirteenth-level mages can have quite a bit of magic up before entering battle. One player is typically in charge of erasing spells as their durations end or they’re lost in combat.

In addition—and I can’t recommend this for AD&D players under 18—I once found a set of “adult” dice in a shop. I purchased them and now hand them to players who declare that their characters are going to go visit a brothel. “Roll them until you’re happy,” I tell them, and let them amuse themselves while I turn to deal with the other players’ after-adventure intentions. Hey—it’s that or let them have a copy of the Netbook of Sex to read, and dice are a staple of the game….

Props can be used for metagaming purposes, as well. After losing too many dice under the couch or behind shelves, a friend and I decided to create “dice boxes” to roll our dice in. We went to a crafts supply store and bought flat, stackable plastic plant pots and covered the bottom with a layer of felt to quiet the clatter a bit. The boxes work extremely well, and now I pass them to each player before every game. I also use an egg timer when I feel the players are slowing down too much in a situation where time matters; they have three minutes to act or they lose their turn. (Having the other players all hum the “Jeopardy” tune also works.)

The two last props I’ll mention here are music and weapons. My husband and I have slowly collected an array of classical and ethnic CDs that we use as background music for our games—Arabian music for Al Qadim, Japanese for my husband’s Oriental campaign, and so forth. One of my friends collects movie soundtracks, and when he runs Birthright we’re in for a day of Conan, Xena, and Hercules. Music works well if it’s primarily instrumental and played low enough to provide background but not drown out the players. I also collect weapons—daggers, swords, tomahawks, crossbows, etc.—and every once in a while I’ll tell a player to grab one and show me what she’s talking about. Pick a lock with a dagger? Okay, grab that one over there and show me how the tip’s going to fit into a keyhole. Open a door with your sword while you stand back? Here’s a rapier—go over to the front door and show me where you’re going to be standing. More often than not, actually hoisting a real sword or dagger will make the player consider how difficult a manuever would really be, and the idea is abandoned for something more realistic.

McGregor, Scott

by Dave McAlister

STR 73
REF 60
INT 71
WIL 52
CON 70
MOV 67
DEX 66

Sex: Male
Race: White
Nationality: British
Native Language: English
Age: 34
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – Total, Sanity – High, Passion – High, Loyalty – Some, Selfishness – High, Piety – Low
Advantages: Blandness, Light Sleeper, Peripheral Vision
Disadvantages: Enemy – Web (4), Uncouth, Allergy – Cats (1)
Skills: Basic Firearms (0), Pistol – Specialisation (9mm Walther PPK) (2), Rifle – Specialisation (.300 magnum Walther 2000) (2), Basic Melee (0), Knife (0), Disguise (0), Lockpicking (0), Driving/Automobile (2), Driving/Off Road (0), Basic Heavy Weapons (0), Machine Gun (0), Piloting – One Engine (0)

Background: Scott McGregor was born Steve Robinson in Ninewells Hospital, Dundee (Scotland) on 1 March 1966. Although brought up in the rough suburb of Whitfield his parents tried to instil come discipline into him and his brother (Sean, 24). Whilst this worked on his brother (who is now a member of Dundee’s CID) Scott soon found his way into many policeman’s notebooks, and at the age of 12 appeared before the local Children’s Panel for theft. He was let off with a warning, but this proved to be of no avail and at the age of 16 was in front of the local Sheriff’s Court for joy riding and the subsequent death of an 80 year old woman. Taking his disruptive background into consideration the Court gave him the choice of spending 4 years in Perth Prison or joining the British Army for a minimum of 6 years. Not being overly fond of the idea of prison, Scott decided to join the Army and so found himself heading to Perbright Barracks to become a Guardsman in the Scots Guards. During his training, the instructors noted that Scott had a remarkable aptitude for weapons, gaining marksmanship awards constantly. Although charged with minor offences Scott was soon promoted to Lance Corporal. As the end of his 6 years service came to a close, Scott noticed the distinct lack of employment outside the Army and decided to sign up for a further 3 years. It wasn’t long before he was promoted to Corporal. However, events conspired against him and after a particularly heavy night out drinking he was broke his sergeant’s nose in a fight. Charged with Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm his Court Martial punishment was simple: 6 months detention and discharged from the Army. After his 6 months “inside” Scott emerged into civilian life to find that his criminal record and lack of a formal education made finding a job impossible. He soon resorted to his criminal lifestyle and began stealing cars. He quickly came to the attention of the local organised crime syndicate (which unknown to him was run by a Web agent). He was offered a choice, work for them or be killed! Rather than die, Scott went to work for them and was soon, once again, proving his aptitude with weapons. After a couple of years Scott began to feel restricted and decided that it was time to move on. In order to improve his future, Scott stole £50,000 of Web money. Using the money he purchased a whole new identity and left Steve Robinson behind. Just to ensure that no-one knew of his new identity he killed the forger and burnt the building. Scott moved to New York and set up shop as a mercenary. At first work was hard to come by, but eventually he has managed to build up a reasonable reputation, mainly as an assassin.

Quick Car Chase Rules

by Chris Johnson

Introduction

These rules allow quick, efficient, and accurate means to incorporate car chase scenarios into gaming sessions. The rules lean more toward simplicity than technicality. They are designed specifically to be used without the need for miniatures or counters on a map, although such items can easily be used if desired. The entire chase can be kept up with on paper, and can most likely be done without any paper and writing if need be. The level of realism by use of miniatures and other game-aids is entirely up to the GM and players. Since such events often occur unplanned in gaming session (i.e. the character suddenly jumps in his car and has to run down a escaping villain) the system was designed to be quickly accessible requiring no prior set-up.

These rules can be used for pretty much any car chase scenario, whether they be a basic police chase in the middle of an adventure, or an elaborate Indy 500-style car race. They are also extremely portable and therefore not limited to any one gaming system.

In short, if you are looking for a quick, yet fun means to handle car chases, then this is the system for you. If you are looking for a system that allows for car design, car accessories, possibilities for any maneuver imaginable, and an elaborate counter-based mapping system, then these rules are not for you.

If you are looking for a way to do car chases on an even simpler basis, check out the One-Brain Cell Car Chase Rules.

Basics

This system is turn-based . In short, each player is allowed 1 maneuver per turn. There are nine possible maneuvers the player can choose from.

  • Maneuvers
  • Left Turn
  • Right Turn
  • Sharp Left Turn
  • Sharp Right Turn
  • Bootleg Reverse
  • Hard Accelerate
  • Hard Brake
  • Soft Side Swipe*
  • Hard Side Swipe*
  • Quick Lane Shift
  • Sideswipe Hold*

* Can only be performed when in close proximity to another car.

The Game Turn

Usually a car chase will begin with one car ahead of the other(s). Initially the GM needs to decide how far apart the cars are, in units. (A unit does not necessarily represent a given term of measurement in the real world; it is simply a means to keep up with distance between vehicles.) It is also necessary to decide initial speeds for each vehicles. Each participant must start each turn deciding whether he or she wants to accelerate, decelerate, or maintain speed. For the sake of simplicity, unless one or more cars use a maneuver Hard Accelerate or Hard Brake, this initial acceleration/deceleration is the same speed rate among all the vehicles. In other words, if a black car is chasing a red car, and the red car decides to accelerate, his rate of acceleration is the same as the other car. (This is for simplicity purposes.) Therefore, if both cars decide to accelerate on their turn, no progress is made between the cars and the distance stays the same. If one car accelerates and the other maintains, then the distance between them is bridged 1 unit per turn. If one accelerates and one decelerates, the distance is bridged 2 units per turn. Note: if one player wishes to catch up with another car, he should probably also do a Hard Accelerate for his or her maneuver that turn. i.e. if a driver puts the pedal to the floor to catch up with a car, this action would not be an initial acceleration (although he might have done that too), but the maneuver called Hard Accelerate.

Once the initial speed decision is made that turn, each driver decides on a maneuver. Any maneuver can be performed, except the Side Swipe Hold, which attempts to hold position against a side-swiping car.

Order, or initiative, is determined in one of two ways. If the chase is used in a roleplaying game scenario, then find the character trait most akin to speed or dexterity in that game system (GM’s discretion) and compare all scores. The one with the highest trait score goes first.

If the chase is being done independent of a roleplaying game, each player simply rolls a die; the highest roller goes first. Any ties are rerolled. Then the maneuvers are executed in the order of initiative.

Maneuvers

As mentioned above, maneuvers are either movement, aggressive or defensive. Movement and defensive maneuvers can be done any time, no matter what distance lies between vehicles. However, aggressive maneuvers can only be done when another car is in close proximity. Only when a car has closed the gap between it and another by accelerating or Hard Accelerating (from the Maneuver Table) can aggressive maneuvers be done.

When a maneuver is executed, a 10-sided die will be rolled. Depending on vehicle speed, the attempt may or may not be easy. Consult the table below to determine what to roll, or less, to achieve success.

Maneuver 1-20mph 31-50 51-70 71-90 91-110 111-130 131-140 151-160 161+
L/R Turn 10 10 9 9 8 8 7 7 6
Sharp L/R Turn 9 9 8 8 7 6 5 4 3
Hard Accelerate 9 9 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
Hard Brake 9 8 8 7 6 5 4 3 2
Soft Side Swipe 8 8 7 7 6 6 5 4 3
Hard Side Swipe 8 7 8 6 6 5 4 3 2
Quick Lane Shift 9 8 8 7 6 5 4 3 2
Side Swipe Block 10 9 8 8 7 7 6 6 5

If the roll is failed, then the car has, to some degree, lost control. This may or may not be something major. Roll on the table below to determine what has happened.

Roll Results
1-5 Minor skid; only insignificant loss of control
6 Car tires hit a slick area and the car has to maintain speed and direction for 1 turn
7 Minor fishtail; there is an 80% chance that control can be regained, otherwise the car will fishtail for 1-5 turns in the direction it was going until it stops
8 Car careens on two wheels. Temporary complete loss of control for 2 turns_ Car sustains light damage
9 Major fishtail; there is a 50% chance that control can be regained; otherwise the car will fishtail for 1-10 turns in the direction it was going until it stops
10* Tires catch on something and the car flips. Car sustains heavy damage. Driver may be injured (GM’s discretion)

* Cannot happen below 40mph. Under such circumstances, reroll.

Any player using Hard Accelerate increases speed by 5 mph per second. This is added to acceleration also gained by the turn’s initial accelerate decision, if that decision was made. So a player who decided to accelerate on a given turn, then chooses a Hard Accelerate that turn would get an acceleration of 10 mph. A player doing a Hard Accelerate after having decided an initial decelerate would cancel out and maintain current speed. As mentioned earlier, distance between cars is also a factor. One Hard Accelerate allows for bridging 2 units. One Hard Brake causes a loss of 2 units. This is along with (not included in) the units gained or lost from the initial speed decision at the beginning of the turn. So, if a black car, having initially decided to accelerate does a Hard Accelerate, and the red car he is chasing does a hard brake after choosing an initial decelerate, then the distance between the cars is bridged by 6 units. Remember, units are not a measurement of distance covered, but of distance between cars.

If cars speeds are exactly matched on a given turn, then each player must roll a die. The player who rolls the highest gains one more unit of distance, and the other does not.

Note: if players wish not to use maps, then they can keep up with the distance between cars by keeping the number handy on paper, until the cars are in close proximity of 1 unit from each other.

Collisions

If the distance in units determined at the beginning of the chase has been bridged to where the cars are 1 unit from each other, then a collision may occur between them. At 1 unit’s distance, a Side Swipe maneuver may be attempted. If successful, refer to the collision table below. Any turn toward, accelerating into, or decelerating into another car also causes a collision.

Also, if an object (another car or anything else) is in the way of a car, a collision occurs. (There may be instances where the GM may place obstacles in the path.) In the case of any collision, the severity is determined by a die roll on the table below:

Roll Results
1-5 Light collision; minor damage to the car; there is a 10% chance the car is rendered inoperable
6-8 Moderate collision; there is a 50% chance the car is inoperable; 25% chance of some driver injury (GM’s discretion on severity); and 10% chance of fire
9-10 Heavy collision; extensive damage to car; there is a 90% chance the car is inoperable; 50% chance of driver injury; 25% chance of fire; 5% chance of explosion

Note: If the collision involves two (or more) cars colliding, then this roll must be made for both cars.

McCoy, Logan

by TheArtofMetal

STR 20
REF 58
INT 69
WIL 77
CON 51
MOV 39
DEX 64

Sex: Male
Race: White
Nationality: American
Native Language: English
Age: Unknown
Psychological Profile: Cruelty – High, Sanity – Some, Passion – Some, Loyalty – Some, Selfishness – High, Piety – Some
Advantages: Contacts Everywhere (2), Driving Ability (3)
Disadvantages: Greed (3), Enemy – Irish gangs (2)
Skills: Basic Firearms (0), Basic Melee (0), Driving/Automobile (3), Driving/Motorcycle (2), Knife (2), Lockpicking (3), Pistol (2), Sleight of Hand (0), Stealth (2), Submachine Gun (0)

Background: Logan McCoy was born in Upstate New York in 1970, and was raised in a strict Irish Catholic household. His family moved to Hell’s Kitchen when he was 6. He joined an Irish gang, the Bannion Brothers, at 16. He started out small, boosting cars and selling guns, but moved on to bigger things, like high-jacking trucks and even making certain people disappear. Logan never considered himself a murderer, since he only killed pimps and drug dealers. Skumbags. As the Bannion Brothers gang became a little more powerful, the Capriati crime family decided it would be better to make friends with the Irish than to waste time fighting with them. Logan thought the transition from small-time hoodlum to Mafia associate would be a good one. He made more money than ever, and starting wearing the best suits. The Capriatis’ many contacts let Logan travel all over the western world, buying guns and cars, and selling guns and cars. He was the top Irishman in the family, and some of his older “Brothers” didn’t like that. Soon, he became bored with the Italians’ business-like eye for money. He missed the excitement of the old days in Hell’s Kitchen. He wanted to try something different, and the family seemed to respect that. When he was 20, McCoy enrolled into NYU with a b.s. scholarship set up by the wiseguys. He did well, graduating in 4 years, with a little help from his wiseguy friends. He could get almost any job he wanted, but he was determined on a government job. Logan tried for Central Intelligence, but wasn’t accepted due to his mental evaluation. It seemed his moral standards were too low for the CIA. Angered that his one shot at going straight failed, he went back to New York, and was accepted with open arms. The rejection changed him. All he saw was green, and it wasn’t shamrocks. Ordered to steal a small garage-load of imported cars, Logan decided to bring along his Bannion buddies for old times sake. They were awaited by a small squad of the NYPD Task Force. Logan was caught in the act, and his “Bannion Brothers” were nowhere to be seen. It was obvious that they set him up out of jealousy. He spent the next 5 years in Sing Sing, not telling the cops anything about the Capriati family. He knew it would mean his life. One day, a couple of CIA agents visited Logan with a proposition; go back to work with the family while undercover, giving up all of his coast to coast customers, or spend 15 more years inside. When he asked why this was the CIA’s problem, they told him that over half of his clients were international terrorists. Feeling disgusted and betrayed, he went along with it. When the entire family was taken down by an “anonymous informant”, the Agency had no more use for Logan. They loaned him off to the Orion Foundation, where his many contacts and his skill for breaking and entering seem to be of help. Logan spent the month off resting in his Manhattan apartment. After the attacks on the towers, he didn’t feel much like going out.When he was starting to cheer up, the Yankees lost the World Series, so he was bummed out yet again. He spent time at his day job as a mechanic, where he learned more about the art of mechanical engineering. When he wasn’t goofing off, he spent his days at the shooting range with his guns, trying to perfect his shot. He refrained from killing anybody, since shooting a bunch of arabs and watching them explode messes with your head a bit, and takes the killer instinct out of ya.