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Midas

Looking for landmines in teleportation

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I'm developing a new campaign/magic system based very loosely on Zelazney's Trumps. (It is actually closer to the Porte magic from 7th Sea, but the mechanism is based on foci - a card, a painting, even a stucco wall painting will work).

 

The idea is that there are two kinds of trumps, people and places. You can activate the trump and travel to the place seen, and you can talk and travel to the location of the person.

 

There are some details I'm leaving out right now, because I really want to talk about t-port as a mechanism. I'll get to other ideas, soonly.

 

What I'm looking for are munchkiny uses of teleport, so that I can have a ruling ready before somebody tries it.

 

Like "Can I send a bomb to such and such a place?" Yes, in theory. I suspect that it will change the target enough that the trump will now be worthless (it will be of a scene that no longer exists).

 

"Can I send a bomb to a person?" In theory, but any body who's sat for a portrait should be savvy enough to be leery of accepting gifts from such a source.

 

"Can I teleport someone to me by using their person trump?" Yes, sort of - they can be teleported by you in a "use on another way" not a "use as attack" way.

 

"Can I send someone else to a place?" Yes, and that is the main function. One character is a t-port mage, and he can send the entire party to the Place of Mystery. Again it has to be voluntary though. In this case, blackmail etc counts as "voluntary".

 

"Can I step halfway through, stab somebody, and step back?" Your name wouldn't be Brand, would it? No, specifically it is more like Porte than trump magic. You are either here or there, not in between. Yes, you can work around by having a trump of your escape place with you. Go to a person, stab him, then go to another place using the second card.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Unfamiliar with the Zelazny story, but I am a HUGE 7th Sea fan. Here goes.

 

What size / weight limits exist for this?

 

What happens when I try to teleport PART of something (like a section of a building or vehicle)?

 

What happens when I try to teleport myself or somebody else - while tied/chained to something that is fixed or simply too big to teleport as well?

 

Can a trump be teleported via another trump to somewhere else?

 

Is there any limit on how many trumps can be usable at once in a given area?

 

What happens if two or more people in different locales try to use the same trump more or less simultaneously?

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Here's how I built Trumps 5 years ago from a similar thread:

 

Here is a list of Trump abilities built without any framework:

 

List: Zelazny's Trumps, all slots OAF (-1), Requires An EGO Roll (RSR Skill is subject to Skill vs. Skill contests; current value based on EGO 15; -1), Concentration, Must Concentrate throughout use of Constant Power (1/2 DCV; -1/2), Requires Light To Use (-1/4) - END=

19 1) Trump View of Person or Place: Clairsentience (Sight, Mystic And Hearing Groups), Analyze, Discriminatory, Perceive into a single other dimension, Costs END Only To Activate (+1/4), Usable Simultaneously (up to 2 people at once; +1/2) (96 Active Points); Fixed Perception Point (The specific person or place drawn; -1), Sense Affected As More Than One Sense [any other Sense] (-1/4) - END=7

10 2) Trump Contact: Polite: Mind Link , One Specific Mind, Any dimension, No LOS Needed, Usable Simultaneously (up to 2 people at once; +1/2) (37 Active Points) - END=0

25 3) Trump Contact: Forced: Mind Scan 10d6 (standard effect: 30 points) (Human class of minds), +5 ECV, Transdimensional (Any Dimension; +1) (120 Active Points); Limited Power Power loses about half of its effectiveness (Only vs. targets drawn on trump; -1) - END=12

27 4) Trump Attack: Ego Attack 4d6, Reduced Endurance (1/2 END; +1/4), Transdimensional (Any Dimension; +1), Continuous (+1) (130 Active Points); Eye Contact Required (Constant Power requires eye contact throughout use; via Trump Contact (Polite or Forced); -1) - END=6

13 5) Trump Travel: Teleportation 1", No Relative Velocity, Safe Blind Teleport (+1/4), Usable Simultaneously (up to 2 people at once; +1/2), Transdimensional (Any Dimension; +1), Continuous (Gate; +1), MegaScale (1" = 10,000 km; +1 1/4), Can Be Scaled Down 1" = 1km (+1/4) (63 Active Points); Can Only Teleport To (or willing target from) Floating or Fixed Locations (-1/2), Linked (Trump View of Person or Place; -1/2) - END=6

16 6) Trumps of various people: Teleportation: Floating Fixed Location (12 Locations) (60 Active Points) - END=0

13 7) Trumps of various places: Teleportation: Fixed Location (50 Locations) (50 Active Points) - END=0

1 8) Trump Sketch: Teleportation: Floating Fixed Location (1 Locations) (5 Active Points); Extra Time (5 Minutes, -2), Independent (The sketch is not permanent and not necessarily on a card; -2) - END=0

 

Almost forgot:

 

45 9) Trump Telepathy: (Total: 190 Active Cost, 45 Real Cost) Costs END Only To Activate (+1/4), Invisible to Mental Group, Hide effects of Power (+1/2) for up to 120 Active Points of Trump Contact: Forced (90 Active Points); Concentration (0 DCV; Character is totally unaware of nearby events; -3/4) (Real Cost: 51) plus Telepathy 10d6 (Human class of minds), Invisible Power Effects, Hide effects of Power (Fully Invisible; +1) (100 Active Points); Concentration (0 DCV; Character is totally unaware of nearby events; -3/4), Linked (Trump Contact: Forced; Lesser Instant Power can be used in any Phase in which greater Constant Power is in use; -1/4) (Real Cost: 23) - END=19

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

I'm developing a new campaign/magic system based very loosely on Zelazney's Trumps. (It is actually closer to the Porte magic from 7th Sea, but the mechanism is based on foci - a card, a painting, even a stucco wall painting will work).

 

The idea is that there are two kinds of trumps, people and places. You can activate the trump and travel to the place seen, and you can talk and travel to the location of the person.

 

There are some details I'm leaving out right now, because I really want to talk about t-port as a mechanism. I'll get to other ideas, soonly.

 

What I'm looking for are munchkiny uses of teleport, so that I can have a ruling ready before somebody tries it.

 

Like "Can I send a bomb to such and such a place?" Yes, in theory. I suspect that it will change the target enough that the trump will now be worthless (it will be of a scene that no longer exists).

 

"Can I send a bomb to a person?" In theory, but any body who's sat for a portrait should be savvy enough to be leery of accepting gifts from such a source.

 

"Can I teleport someone to me by using their person trump?" Yes, sort of - they can be teleported by you in a "use on another way" not a "use as attack" way.

 

"Can I send someone else to a place?" Yes, and that is the main function. One character is a t-port mage, and he can send the entire party to the Place of Mystery. Again it has to be voluntary though. In this case, blackmail etc counts as "voluntary".

 

"Can I step halfway through, stab somebody, and step back?" Your name wouldn't be Brand, would it? No, specifically it is more like Porte than trump magic. You are either here or there, not in between. Yes, you can work around by having a trump of your escape place with you. Go to a person, stab him, then go to another place using the second card.

 

I highly recommend Erich Wojic's Amber Diceless RPG and it's supplement. While you may not want to use his system. He does a great job explaining the powers that an Amberite (or someone from Chaos) has and what they can and cannot do. There are also great resources on the web that add on some great systems that further break down what you can and cannot do. One thing is clear. Not all Amberites are good at every power. ie the Redheads (Fiona, Brand, Bleys) are all VERY good at doing cool things with the Trumps and all are mentalists. Random is a wizard at moving through shadow and can pull tricks that no one else can. etc.

 

I would have a package of very basic abilities that come from having a set of trumps (ie Trump 101). Then expand what can be done from there either by requiring that additional powers be purchased and or requiring a Power skill roll be done to do the special thing. I would recommend the same for traveling through shadow, using Magic, and Chaos powers.

 

I would go into greater depth, but I am on my way out of the door. Good Luck with your research.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Here's how I built Trumps 5 years ago from a similar thread:

Quote Originally Posted by Hyper-Man

Here is a list of Trump abilities built without any framework:

 

Thank you, this is a very good list. I've gone over it, and marked how I would change it for not Amber!trumps. I'll point out that my trumps can't be used for attacks, only for contact and teleportation - and surveillance, thank you for adding that to my list.

 

List: Zelazny's Trumps, all slots OAF (-1), Requires An EGO Roll (RSR Skill is subject to Skill vs. Skill contests; current value based on EGO 15; -1), Concentration, Must Concentrate throughout use of Constant Power (1/2 DCV; -1/2), Requires Light To Use (-1/4)

 

I'll keep the OAF, and add fragile as a default. I could argue that a stucco painting is an OIF - or even an IIF (if the viewer didn't know why the mage was staring so intently at it)- but will probably let that be covered by the immoble modifier: A viewer could still tackle the mage and thus "separate" him from the painting. I'll also say I like 6e, but intend to re-introduce Independent for these. A trump is truly an independent magic item after all.

 

I'd replace the EGO roll with a RSR, because it depends on the skill of the user, not the power. Also, I would use a -10, or even a -5 (I'll explain why below) rather than a -15.

 

Keeping the rest.

 

19 1) Trump View of Person or Place: Clairsentience (Sight, Mystic And Hearing Groups), Analyze, Discriminatory, Perceive into a single other dimension, Costs END Only To Activate (+1/4), Usable Simultaneously (up to 2 people at once; +1/2) (96 Active Points); Fixed Perception Point (The specific person or place drawn; -1), Sense Affected As More Than One Sense [any other Sense] (-1/4) - END=7

 

Pretty much.

 

10 2) Trump Contact: Polite: Mind Link , One Specific Mind, Any dimension, No LOS Needed, Usable Simultaneously (up to 2 people at once; +1/2) (37 Active Points) - END=0

 

I'm not quite a stickler for every little detail, so I'd just assume this into the above power.

 

25 3) Trump Contact: Forced: Mind Scan 10d6 (standard effect: 30 points) (Human class of minds), +5 ECV, Transdimensional (Any Dimension; +1) (120 Active Points); Limited Power Power loses about half of its effectiveness (Only vs. targets drawn on trump; -1) - END=12

 

*My* trumps don't work this way. ;)

 

27 4) Trump Attack: Ego Attack 4d6, Reduced Endurance (1/2 END; +1/4), Transdimensional (Any Dimension; +1), Continuous (+1) (130 Active Points); Eye Contact Required (Constant Power requires eye contact throughout use; via Trump Contact (Polite or Forced); -1) - END=6

 

Again my trumps don't work this way.

 

13 5) Trump Travel: Teleportation 1", No Relative Velocity, Safe Blind Teleport (+1/4), Usable Simultaneously (up to 2 people at once; +1/2), Transdimensional (Any Dimension; +1), Continuous (Gate; +1), MegaScale (1" = 10,000 km; +1 1/4), Can Be Scaled Down 1" = 1km (+1/4) (63 Active Points); Can Only Teleport To (or willing target from) Floating or Fixed Locations (-1/2), Linked (Trump View of Person or Place; -1/2) - END=6

 

I don't think I need the simultaneous. A user could push someone else through, and then go after, and conversely, if the person "on the other end" wanted to send someone else through first, that would still be a single file.

 

I'll have to look at the written Gate rules again, but I don't think they work quite right for what we are talking about.

 

Quick aside: I intend to handwave the minimum distance requirement for MegaScale. In my mind this gives the trump a weird kind of locate effect: "OK, the card doesn't work. We must be within one kilometer of the site."

 

16 6) Trumps of various people: Teleportation: Floating Fixed Location (12 Locations) (60 Active Points) - END=0

 

I take it you are buying the deck as a set? I'd just go with buying each card separately.

 

13 7) Trumps of various places: Teleportation: Fixed Location (50 Locations) (50 Active Points) - END=0

 

As above.

 

1 8) Trump Sketch: Teleportation: Floating Fixed Location (1 Locations) (5 Active Points); Extra Time (5 Minutes, -2), Independent (The sketch is not permanent and not necessarily on a card; -2) - END=0

 

That's how Dworkin sprung Corwin, isn't it? The only thing I'd change is that it is permanent, and requires the rarer PS: Trumps (where the character can actual create the things) as opposed to the KS: (how to use one that is available).

 

45 9) Trump Telepathy: (Total: 190 Active Cost, 45 Real Cost) Costs END Only To Activate (+1/4), Invisible to Mental Group, Hide effects of Power (+1/2) for up to 120 Active Points of Trump Contact: Forced (90 Active Points); Concentration (0 DCV; Character is totally unaware of nearby events; -3/4) (Real Cost: 51) plus Telepathy 10d6 (Human class of minds), Invisible Power Effects, Hide effects of Power (Fully Invisible; +1) (100 Active Points); Concentration (0 DCV; Character is totally unaware of nearby events; -3/4), Linked (Trump Contact: Forced; Lesser Instant Power can be used in any Phase in which greater Constant Power is in use; -1/4) (Real Cost: 23) - END=19

 

I don't think I need this one. I'm guessing this is some skill Brand or Fiona had?

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Like "Can I send a bomb to such and such a place?" Yes, in theory. I suspect that it will change the target enough that the trump will now be worthless (it will be of a scene that no longer exists).

 

"Can I send a bomb to a person?" In theory, but any body who's sat for a portrait should be savvy enough to be leery of accepting gifts from such a source.

 

If sending a bomb in changes a scene enough the "trump" doesn't work, how about painting the walls? Rearranging the furniture?

 

So - you can't send something to a person unless they accept it. Can you Teleport to a person if they don't want to see you? If yes, why the difference?

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary wants to build a large number of rooms in widely different locations that are only accessible via Teleportation, and pass out the pictures that access them like keys to those who rent the rooms. We'll call it the Trump Hotel....

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Unfamiliar with the Zelazny story' date=' but I am a HUGE 7th Sea fan. Here goes.[/quote']

 

To make a very long story very short: Carl Corey, a twenty century amnesiac, discovers a box of hand painted tarot cards. He finds out that he is really Prince Corwin of Amber, and that the court of Amber is facing a dynastic crisis. It turns out that Grand Dad had all the family sit for a series of portraits that behaved something like telephones (actually visiphones), and could also be used to teleport between people "on the phone." He gave each grandkid a deck, and threw in a few landscapes as well. Grandson Brand figured out how to use the cards for assassination. He'd call a relative and say "Can I come over?" Then stick his head and one arm through and say "TAG! You're a corpse!"

 

While interesting in a narrative sense, I don't like the skill for gaming, which is why I mentioned Porte magic.

 

What size / weight limits exist for this?

 

I'm going with the standard hero rules here. Unless paid for or pushed, 100kg, two meters height, etc.

 

What happens when I try to teleport PART of something (like a section of a building or vehicle)?

 

Nothing. Your oversize target just sits there.

 

What happens when I try to teleport myself or somebody else - while tied/chained to something that is fixed or simply too big to teleport as well?

 

The easy answer is again nothing. I'd have to think about it a bit for any reason why someone could do otherwise.

 

This does help with one problem I've encountered with tport: Tissue paper jails. Yes, a decent jailor will know enough to take a trump away from a detainee, but that doesn't do much for the simple expedient of having an ally with your trump checking in on you.

 

I don't want to do a whole subgenre of "Forcefield vs Teleport" "Suppress Teleport area effect" etc.

 

But I like the simple expedient of shackling someone to a bar in the jail to cancell the teleport appeals.

 

Can a trump be teleported via another trump to somewhere else?

 

Two questions.

1) Unlike in Mordant's Need, yes trumps can travel with you when you go somewhere else via trump.

2) And yes, if you really want to, you can give a trump you possess to someone "on the other end," or just toss it into an open landscape.

 

Is there any limit on how many trumps can be usable at once in a given area?

 

Only one per user, but I guess in a stadium this would be a tremendous number of people.

 

What happens if two or more people in different locales try to use the same trump more or less simultaneously?

 

For a place with more than one trump? Both arrive next to each other. I'll handwave the "But my trump should have me a foot to my right" argument.

 

For a person? The easy answer is again the telephone analogy. Somebody gets a busy signal. It might be more interesting to have it set up as a conference call situation though. What do you think?

 

For the very rare Item trump? It would be astonishing if more than one trump existed for an item, but if it did...

 

Hmnnn... Somebody could grab the item, somebody else could take it from the first person immediately or whenever they felt like it, the first could snatch it back...

 

Sooner or later, someone would try to use the trump to hold onto the item, and then you might have some kind of contest...

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Something else to consider - conservation of motion, or lack thereof.

 

In simplest terms, if the t-port is falling at terminal velocity and uses this ability, does s/he retain that same velocity upon arrival?

 

OR (for argument's sake), if the t-porter is moving between, say, a jet airliner and the ground?

 

My assumption is that the character's vectors all sort of disappear upon t-port, But, this should be thoroughly addressed early on. Particularly for extreme cases - we KNOW the PCs will find ways to ramp things up.

 

*****

 

As an aside, one "teleporter" book I think pretty good is 'Jumper' by Steven Gould, which does have interesting stuff as regards the main character trying to explore his new-found ability and finding ways to use it. The movie and movie-related material is so-so, by comparison. I am quite certain, however, THAT style of t-port is probably too high-powered for your liking.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Something else to consider - conservation of motion, or lack thereof.

 

In simplest terms, if the t-port is falling at terminal velocity and uses this ability, does s/he retain that same velocity upon arrival?

 

OR (for argument's sake), if the t-porter is moving between, say, a jet airliner and the ground?

 

My assumption is that the character's vectors all sort of disappear upon t-port, But, this should be thoroughly addressed early on. Particularly for extreme cases - we KNOW the PCs will find ways to ramp things up.

 

*****

 

As an aside, one "teleporter" book I think pretty good is 'Jumper' by Steven Gould, which does have interesting stuff as regards the main character trying to explore his new-found ability and finding ways to use it. The movie and movie-related material is so-so, by comparison. I am quite certain, however, THAT style of t-port is probably too high-powered for your liking.

 

One thing about this is that Trumps are mostly used for extra dimensional Movement. Corwin does use a trump to travel while he was on shadow Earth, but that was more rare. Remember that when you use a trump that you open yourself up to psychic attack. It's considered rude to do so, and it can be quite dangerous to do it esp if you don't have the mental wattage that your target does.

 

One reason that noone tries to send bombs using trumps is that you have no idea if the "Shadow" (AKA Dimension) that your target is in allows the substances in your bomb to actually explode. Technology doesn't work everywhere in the multiverse. Guns that work here on Earth don't work near the dimension that is the Prime Dimension of Amber. This is due to the fact that what we make gunpowder out of doesn't burn quite as energetically in the dimension of Amber.

 

Moving via Trump does remove all velocity or at least sync's the destination trumps velocity with the person coming through it. So you could use a trump to get your cousin into your car that you are using to shadowwalk. They can see what they are stepping into, so you can't really use it to ambush someone.

 

I admit it's been years since I read the Amber series. The last time I did so was when I played in a Amber Diceless RPG game. It is really a great source of information on the Amber multiverse. After reading both books, I recommend rereading the series (both Corwin's story and Merlin's). You will notice more of the background mechanics of things. No matter what system you use, it is a fun universe to play in.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

One thing about this is that Trumps are mostly used for extra dimensional Movement. Corwin does use a trump to travel while he was on shadow Earth, but that was more rare. Remember that when you use a trump that you open yourself up to psychic attack. It's considered rude to do so, and it can be quite dangerous to do it esp if you don't have the mental wattage that your target does.

 

One reason that noone tries to send bombs using trumps is that you have no idea if the "Shadow" (AKA Dimension) that your target is in allows the substances in your bomb to actually explode. Technology doesn't work everywhere in the multiverse. Guns that work here on Earth don't work near the dimension that is the Prime Dimension of Amber. This is due to the fact that what we make gunpowder out of doesn't burn quite as energetically in the dimension of Amber.

 

Moving via Trump does remove all velocity or at least sync's the destination trumps velocity with the person coming through it. So you could use a trump to get your cousin into your car that you are using to shadowwalk. They can see what they are stepping into, so you can't really use it to ambush someone.

 

I admit it's been years since I read the Amber series. The last time I did so was when I played in a Amber Diceless RPG game. It is really a great source of information on the Amber multiverse. After reading both books, I recommend rereading the series (both Corwin's story and Merlin's). You will notice more of the background mechanics of things. No matter what system you use, it is a fun universe to play in.

 

Remember? Haven't read any of those stories, so I'll take your word for it. ;)

 

*****

 

We can infer that there is something about this t-port process that kills velocities above a certain threshold. So people can "jump" through or toss objects through without problem, but a relatively high-speed projectile (arrow or bullet) either loses most of its velocity or otherwise becomes harmless/useless.

 

Does occur to me that if one can communicate through this t-port, then sound waves (faster than arrows or many bullets) must be OK for some reason.

 

Hmmm, if one can send sound waves through this t-port, what about sonic-based attacks? Or laser beams or EM signals?

 

Also, from the movie 'Jumper' there is a t-port stunt which I am sure one or other of the PCs might try to emulate at some point. If our t-porter's carry capacity is limited primarily by strength, then one trick would be to immerse in a body of water (bath tub, hot tub, pool) right before t-porting. That way, they can carry a respectable amount of water with them. Could be handy if t-porting into a room that is on fire or full of hostiles, or if the t-porter just wants to cause serious property damage (Hello? PCs?). The extremely sudden (and probably unexpected) arrival of even a mere 40-50 kilograms of water would be a pretty fair distraction AND make a hell of a mess.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Remember? Haven't read any of those stories, so I'll take your word for it. ;)

 

*****

 

We can infer that there is something about this t-port process that kills velocities above a certain threshold. So people can "jump" through or toss objects through without problem, but a relatively high-speed projectile (arrow or bullet) either loses most of its velocity or otherwise becomes harmless/useless.

 

Does occur to me that if one can communicate through this t-port, then sound waves (faster than arrows or many bullets) must be OK for some reason.

 

Hmmm, if one can send sound waves through this t-port, what about sonic-based attacks? Or laser beams or EM signals?

 

Also, from the movie 'Jumper' there is a t-port stunt which I am sure one or other of the PCs might try to emulate at some point. If our t-porter's carry capacity is limited primarily by strength, then one trick would be to immerse in a body of water (bath tub, hot tub, pool) right before t-porting. That way, they can carry a respectable amount of water with them. Could be handy if t-porting into a room that is on fire or full of hostiles, or if the t-porter just wants to cause serious property damage (Hello? PCs?). The extremely sudden (and probably unexpected) arrival of even a mere 40-50 kilograms of water would be a pretty fair distraction AND make a hell of a mess.

 

Sound does not travel through trumps. The Trumps only facilitate Mental Communication (that's why they can be dangerous to use. If you talk to someone who has stronger psychic powers than you. They could use the Trump to do things to you)

 

They do have a travel component. One could hand someone an object through a trump. I don't know/remember if that someone could stab you through a trump. I know that thrown objects are right out. I think that the act of reaching into a trump to pull someone through is probably more a mental construct than something you have to physically do.

 

Wujick's books do a great job about talking about each of the powers and how a GM could approach them. In the Amber games that I have played in, each GM has had a slightly different intrepretation of how the powers work and what you can get away with doing with them. A good rule of thumb is "If someone in the Zelazny novels did it, you should be able to as well. Given the right amount of power and expertise"

 

while I am quoting your post, I am talking as much to the OP as to you :D

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

The campaign has several literary inspirations. In no particular order: Farmer's World of Tier series, Amber, Mordant's Need, Galatia in 2d, and a book by Lawrence Watt-Evans which I have not been able to find again.

 

Game inspirations include 7th Sea's Porte magic, Lords of Creation, GURPS, and all those early dungeons that came out in the late seventies.

 

If sending a bomb in changes a scene enough the "trump" doesn't work, how about painting the walls? Rearranging the furniture?

 

So - you can't send something to a person unless they accept it. Can you Teleport to a person if they don't want to see you? If yes, why the difference?

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary wants to build a large number of rooms in widely different locations that are only accessible via Teleportation, and pass out the pictures that access them like keys to those who rent the rooms. We'll call it the Trump Hotel....

 

In the Watt-Evans book, Our Hero enters a room with a dessicated corpse on the floor and a mural that sounds like a Villejo work; a castle suspended in space. For reasons I don't recall, he figured out that the mural was a portal, and went through. On the other side was a mural of the room he had left, which didn't work. After finding another character who had been there for decades, they figured out that the reason the return mural didn't work was that the second person who was to come through the portal died in the room. His corpse was changing the scene enough that the mural was no longer correct enough to work. The rest of the story deals with the duo trying to get in contact with old universe and get someone to move the corpse.

 

I don't like this because too much can happen to change a scene. Wasn't Dworkin's lair a light house? "Oh oh. Seagull perched on the parapet. SHOOOO! You're blocking the trump!"

 

I am thinking a bomb blast enough to actually destroy a site, make significant changes, would work, but not just, for ex, putting a paint bomb on the other side.

 

IMO, they work something like Skype, with a Trek style transporter "IM function." "You are receiving a transport attachment from USER #34321. Do you want to accept?" Except it is all intuitive rather than IM based.

 

Dear Palindromedary:

This is a formal Cease and Desist order on your use of proprietary Trump Industry Technology without use of license.

 

Sincerely,

Trump Industries Legal Department

 

Aren't there some science fiction stories like that? The rooms of a house aren't necessarily on the same planet, or even the same solar system.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

The campaign has several literary inspirations. In no particular order: Farmer's World of Tier series' date=' [i']Amber[/i], Mordant's Need, Galatia in 2d, and a book by Lawrence Watt-Evans which I have not been able to find again.

 

Game inspirations include 7th Sea's Porte magic, Lords of Creation, GURPS, and all those early dungeons that came out in the late seventies.

 

 

 

In the Watt-Evans book, Our Hero enters a room with a dessicated corpse on the floor and a mural that sounds like a Villejo work; a castle suspended in space. For reasons I don't recall, he figured out that the mural was a portal, and went through. On the other side was a mural of the room he had left, which didn't work. After finding another character who had been there for decades, they figured out that the reason the return mural didn't work was that the second person who was to come through the portal died in the room. His corpse was changing the scene enough that the mural was no longer correct enough to work. The rest of the story deals with the duo trying to get in contact with old universe and get someone to move the corpse.

 

I don't like this because too much can happen to change a scene. Wasn't Dworkin's lair a light house? "Oh oh. Seagull perched on the parapet. SHOOOO! You're blocking the trump!"

 

I am thinking a bomb blast enough to actually destroy a site, make significant changes, would work, but not just, for ex, putting a paint bomb on the other side.

 

IMO, they work something like Skype, with a Trek style transporter "IM function." "You are receiving a transport attachment from USER #34321. Do you want to accept?" Except it is all intuitive rather than IM based.

 

Dear Palindromedary:

This is a formal Cease and Desist order on your use of proprietary Trump Industry Technology without use of license.

 

Sincerely,

Trump Industries Legal Department

 

Aren't there some science fiction stories like that? The rooms of a house aren't necessarily on the same planet, or even the same solar system.

 

I always figured that trump worked from the Psychic impression of the place. Otherwise Trumps to places where time moves super fast compared to Amber would be dangerous to make (ie a Trump from Amber to the Courts of Chaos). ie A trump to a place where time moves a thousand times faster than Amber would have building disintegrate and landscapes changed almost as fast as someone left the dimension.

 

You could explain that bit in the other books with the explanation that those paintings were made by someone in shadow. Who didn't have the power of the Pattern or Logrus behind them. So the "trump" paintings were flawed by the lack of mental wattage. So those might have had to be exact copies for the portals to work.

 

Mild Spoilers ahead:

 

Also, the trumps obviously don't have to be that accurate or photorealistic. the Jailcell trump scratched into the Cell wall with a spoon couldn't be that nice. Also the Trumps of People were very stylized in that they were portrayed in clothing that matched their livery and had objects in it that the person could be known. Corwin's trump didn't work (Assuming that Fiona didn't lie) because his brain had been too damaged by the disease he had contracted on Shadow Earth. His Psychic signature had changed. When Corwin walked the Pattern again, the Pattern reset him to his "normal" psychic signature.

 

While Dworkin was the archetect of Amber's trumps, Courts of Chaos Lords also used them. So it was obviously something that Dworkin brought with him when he fled the courts and created Amber.

 

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

I have moved this at the OP's request

 

TY.

I'm pondering thoughtful replies to the thread, so it may take me a while to come up with something worth reading. Please stay tuned. :)

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Zelazny's novels are great, both the Amber series we are talking about here and his many others. Read them if you haven't.

 

Trumps in the Amber series are something that are very rare. Not many people could make them and it ususally involved quite a bit of time and effort. They only related to specific individuals or places and you couldn't just whip up a Trump of a particular enemey in order to kill them. As far as I can recall, all the personalities depicted were part of the extended family that the protagonist belonged to, but whether that was coincidence or some sort of rule, I do not know. I suspect the latter because even accepting a call required some sort of awareness and possibly power, so I don't thing that it would work if you just created a picture of 'Generic Enemy Leader #7', if GEL7 was not a 'family member'.

 

All family members are powerful and tricksy. You may be able to assassinate one person through a Trump, but only because no one really expected you to. After that it would be a lot harder as people were a lot more wary. Like many things in a novel though, Trumps existed as a narrative device and were never properly explained.

 

The way I see them is that they create a teleport gate, whether it be a transidmensional TP or possibly a EDM, it was a two way gate. Opening it joins the two places, allowing two way comminication and travel. And, for that matter, stabbing. IIRC either party could break the contact at will. They took some concentration to use, and you could not force one open to a person if they did not want it opened. Trumps to places were much more reliable although I think it may even have been possible to block those in certain situations.

 

I understand that your plan is to work them a bit differently, so you do not have a gate effect as such. What you are effectively doing with Trumps is creating a new map, with all points joined to the locations and people that you have Trumps for. This makes it very difficult to trap someone with a pack of Trumps unless you attack them so that they can not use them then physically take the Trumps off them. Trumps could also be used for consensual communication.

 

Family members had a lot of other abilities too, including the ability to walk through shadow - you could 'edit' the world around you and change it until it was the place you wanted to be. There were certain places in the multiverse you could not shadow walk to and you would have to use actual walking or some other form of transport - horses being popular as they always work, no matter what reality you are in - whereas most machines or even chemical processes often did not work the smae way - or at all - in different palces. Why that did not affect biochemistry was never explained. You can bring others with you on a shadow walk, sometimes a LOT of others; you can march an army through shadows, but others can manipulate shadow too, so it is not necessarily easy.

 

What I would be inclined to do, unless the PCs are supposed to be very experienced and powerful already, is introduce Trumps as a form of telephone/teleport, and then add in other powers as you go along, if you are feeling brave enough.

 

Bear in mind it should take some time and effort to 'make contact', so you can not often do it if you are highly distracted, for example, in combat, accepting contact is voluntary and either party can break the link at will. you should (generally) know the identity of anyone trying to make contact with you. Also Trumps may simply not work, and you won't know why. I'd build in a -1/4 'unreliable' limitation to cover that, then, if the PCs are overusing Trumps to deal with everything, have them stop working. You can explain why later or leave it as a mystery, but it is on the build, so they can not complain*. That will cover a lot of munchkin possibilities.

 

 

*Well, I bet they CAN complain, but that will give you the moral high ground.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

Also one limit to trumps is that you have to see them to use them. That's why when they needed to keep an Amberite imprisoned they blinded the person and locked them into a pitch black room. They suspected that the individual could eventualy grow the eyes back, so the darkened room was required to prevent escape through trump.

 

(I am trying to keep the posts plot vague so that people who haven't read the books won't gain significant spoilers from the discussion).

 

Teleportation that is unlimited has signifigant landmines. Trumps as Teleportation device have many limitations that mitigate many issues a GM might have with Teleportation.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

...I understand that your plan is to work them a bit differently' date=' so you do not have a gate effect as such. What you are effectively doing with Trumps is creating a new map, with all points joined to the locations and people that you have Trumps for. This makes it very difficult to trap someone with a pack of Trumps unless you attack them so that they can not use them then physically take the Trumps off them. Trumps could also be used for consensual communication.[/quote']

 

The idea I have is that the trumps are operated like Amber trumps, the character looks at the card (or painting, whatever) *sees* the location, and steps through. Mechanically and conceptually, they are closer to the mirrors of Mirror of Her Dreams. The Artist conceives of a location, paints it, puts a part of his soul (sacrifices EP to make an independent focus) into it, and the finished product is a three dimensional location.

 

What I would be inclined to do' date=' unless the PCs are supposed to be very experienced and powerful already, is introduce Trumps as a form of telephone/teleport, and then add in other powers as you go along, if you are feeling brave enough.[/quote']

 

The cards will be "scrolls" found in looted treasure. So when Our Heroes find the usual collection of random coins, gems, jewelry, the occasional Implement of Campaign Wrecking, they also find a couple of portraits and a card showing a ruined castle.

 

Yeah, I'm considering other powers, but the most dangerous one is the Creation skill: Giving the PC the ability to create gates to wherever/whomever he can conceive.

 

Bear in mind it should take some time and effort to 'make contact', so you can not often do it if you are highly distracted, for example, in combat, accepting contact is voluntary and either party can break the link at will. you should (generally) know the identity of anyone trying to make contact with you. Also Trumps may simply not work, and you won't know why. I'd build in a -1/4 'unreliable' limitation to cover that, then, if the PCs are overusing Trumps to deal with everything, have them stop working. You can explain why later or leave it as a mystery, but it is on the build, so they can not complain*. That will cover a lot of munchkin possibilities.

 

 

*Well, I bet they CAN complain, but that will give you the moral high ground.

:sneaky: Well, that is only to be expected.

 

The metagaming idea I had was to use a skill roll to let the player know what he is getting into.

Player: I want to try this new card.

GM: OK, the character finds this card to be incredibly complex. (about a -10 to your skill roll to activate).

Player: (OOC) Oh, this place is tough, maybe I should back off until I have some high powered friends with me.

 

On the subject of otherworlds; Amber is very Schrodinger. Both the characters in the series and the reader are left to ponder whether the worlds they visit exist until someone says "I wonder if a world like this exists". Mirror, OTOH, has as a plot point that the universes seen in the mirrors exist before someone creates a mirror of the place. Galatia in 2d, on a third hand, specifically states that the people and places only come into existence when conceived by the painter.

 

I'm going with both. Some places only exist because a painter brought them into existance. Later, Our Heroes discover places that seem to have an independent existence.

 

I'm going to call it a night here, and take up discussion next time I'm online. :o

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

The idea I have is that the trumps are operated like Amber trumps' date=' the character looks at the card (or painting, whatever) *sees* the location, and steps through. Mechanically and conceptually, they are closer to the mirrors of [i']Mirror of Her Dreams[/i]. The Artist conceives of a location, paints it, puts a part of his soul (sacrifices EP to make an independent focus) into it, and the finished product is a three dimensional location.

 

The cards will be "scrolls" found in looted treasure. So when Our Heroes find the usual collection of random coins, gems, jewelry, the occasional Implement of Campaign Wrecking, they also find a couple of portraits and a card showing a ruined castle.

 

Yeah, I'm considering other powers, but the most dangerous one is the Creation skill: Giving the PC the ability to create gates to wherever/whomever he can conceive.

 

:sneaky: Well, that is only to be expected.

 

The metagaming idea I had was to use a skill roll to let the player know what he is getting into.

Player: I want to try this new card.

GM: OK, the character finds this card to be incredibly complex. (about a -10 to your skill roll to activate).

Player: (OOC) Oh, this place is tough, maybe I should back off until I have some high powered friends with me.

 

On the subject of otherworlds; Amber is very Schrodinger. Both the characters in the series and the reader are left to ponder whether the worlds they visit exist until someone says "I wonder if a world like this exists". Mirror, OTOH, has as a plot point that the universes seen in the mirrors exist before someone creates a mirror of the place. Galatia in 2d, on a third hand, specifically states that the people and places only come into existence when conceived by the painter.

 

I'm going with both. Some places only exist because a painter brought them into existance. Later, Our Heroes discover places that seem to have an independent existence.

 

I'm going to call it a night here, and take up discussion next time I'm online. :o

 

In the Amberverse (Actually technically it should be called the Amber-Multiverse, but that's long and clumsy), some shadows do seem to only come into existance when an Amberite or a Chaosite conceives of the place and walks through shadow to find it. Also, any place where an Amberite spends any real amount of time tends to become more "real". To the point where said shadow tends to have shadows of their own that are slightly different (ie Our Earth, AKA Shadow Earth. Has been made very real by the many Princes and Princesses of Amber that went there to have fun and just stayed for Centuries. It is now a VERY real place in the Amberverse.

 

So it's very Amberverse like to have "real" shadows. As a point of weird Trivia, Cynosure (from the GrimJack Comic) is a real place in the Amberverse. In fact Grimjack makes a cameo in the second series(As "Old Jack"). Even if you Ignore the Pattern Users and Logrus (Chaos equiv of the Pattern). You can have a very good campaign set in the Amberverse and never have anyone from the books show up. Though it could be fun to have old Dworkin or even Oberon pulling the strings of the PC's, their Opposition or both.

 

How you describe building trumps fits into the "official" way things work in the Amberverse. Though usually the Trump user powers the trump though either the Pattern or the Logrus (unconsciously. though it can be argued that both are sides of the same power). Amber has a ton of Meta that people can argue about to their heart's content.

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Re: Looking for landmines in teleportation

 

For a party, one issue is whether several people can travel through. Long time since I read Amber, so I can not recall any specific examples of someone opening a connection and two or more people travelling through, but I may have forgotten! You take your trump with you (unless it is painted on a wall or somesuch) - I do remember that!

 

Apropros of nothing, we played a superhero game where a 'technical' party member (in fact an NPC) had a 'party teleport' power, which worked well. it was a GM narrative device, allowing us to get to places (and very occasionally out of places!) without leaving the full control with the players. It did not entirely stifle creative uses, but certainly regulated them.

 

Also apropros of nothing, I always saw the Amber stories as very much in the mould of the Greek myths, with the Courts of Chaos being the Titans, the Amberites being the Gods and the younger offspring the demigods and heroes.

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