Jump to content
quozaxx

Twisted Fairy Tales

Recommended Posts

I am considering making a heroic game based in the fairy tale world.   Players can choose almost any literary character before the 1940s

 

So, the could play anything from Frankenstein's monster to Jack, from Jack and the beanstalk. 

 

But that means that there will be magic.  I will use the adage that all magic comes with a price.

 

For example,  Merlin ages every time he does a spell.  He's really in his 20s, but looks like he's in his 80s.

 

Question 1.  Who would you like your character to meet?

 

Question 2.  What are some common archetypes (besides pirate, knight, princess, or thief)?

 

Question 3.  How else can I make this balanced between magical beings and heroic characters?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1 - Snow White

2 - bard/jester, herald, woodsman, beggar...

3 - I am not sure where your balance concerns come from. If you reckon the magic will overwhelm the heroes, provide them with ways to nullify the magic, story clues which, if they find them mitigate the effects of the magic.

 

Doc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You might think about providing items that boost either the application of or resistance to magic.  I like to give players things with limited numbers of charges, things that wear out.  You can do that in the usual way but I have found using dice pools much more interesting. 


You have a wand of healing 4D6 with a pool [6].  When you use the wand you do the 4d6 healing then throw the pool.  If the player rolled two 6's then the pool would reduce to [4].  The interesting thing about it is that you do not know when the wand will run out.  You might throw four 6's in the next roll, you might get to a pool of 1 and then not roll a six in the next 20 uses.  That little element of randomness raises the stakes in very interesting ways.  I would reduce any charge limitation by +1/2 if you use a pool instead of straight charges and strictly limit the use to odd items otherwise you introduce too much dice rolling.

 

 

Doc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Doc Democracy said:

You might think about providing items that boost either the application of or resistance to magic.  I like to give players things with limited numbers of charges, things that wear out.  You can do that in the usual way but I have found using dice pools much more interesting. 


You have a wand of healing 4D6 with a pool [6].  When you use the wand you do the 4d6 healing then throw the pool.  If the player rolled two 6's then the pool would reduce to [4].  The interesting thing about it is that you do not know when the wand will run out.  You might throw four 6's in the next roll, you might get to a pool of 1 and then not roll a six in the next 20 uses.  That little element of randomness raises the stakes in very interesting ways.  I would reduce any charge limitation by +1/2 if you use a pool instead of straight charges and strictly limit the use to odd items otherwise you introduce too much dice rolling.

 

 

Doc

I like that idea

 

1 hour ago, Dkap said:

The comic Fable might help you with this

A comic fable?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, quozaxx said:

I like that idea

 

A comic fable?

 

15 minutes ago, quozaxx said:

I like that idea

 

A comic fable?

It is a collection from Vertigo comics

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Dkap said:

 

It is a collection from Vertigo comics

 

There's even a reasonably good video game based on The Big Bad Wolf that I *believe* is from that comic series.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fable is a great inspiration for this sort of thing. The first 2 story arcs are very solid and are both included in the premium hard cover graphic novel.

The video game mentioned above is a Telltale Game called The Wolf Among Us and is a prequel to the comic series focused on Bigby (the Big Bad) Wolf, Fabletown's current sheriff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/18/2019 at 1:46 AM, quozaxx said:

Question 1.  Who would you like your character to meet?

 

Question 2.  What are some common archetypes (besides pirate, knight, princess, or thief)?

 

Question 3.  How else can I make this balanced between magical beings and heroic characters?

 

1. One of the freaks: Rumpelstiltskin, the Beast, Tom Thumb.

 

2. Kids.  Resourceful peasants.  Cursed/blessed people.

 

3. The best way I can think of is to make it a relative low point total campaign so that even non-combat normals can compete using skills, talents, a freakishly high characteristic, a magic item, or even a power.  Examples of the latter might be prehensile hair or multiform.

 

Tropes that distinguish fairy tales from heroic fantasy:

 

- Curses.

- Talking animals.

- Noncombat protagonists. 

- An emphasis on wit and moral character rather than combat proficiency.

- Weak magic (as wielded by protagonists).

- Antagonists with strong magic and a specific weakness.

- Magic items and magic terrain features.

 

Magic deserves particular attention.  Fairy tale magic can be powerful but is rarely spectacular or direct.  I'd seriously consider banning direct attacks like RKAs and Blast.  Fairy tale spellcasters are far more likely to use subtler effects like Transform, Aid, Mind Control, or Shapeshift.  In direct combat you might see Flash, Entangle, or TK*.  What you won't see is fireball and lightning bolt.  Plot-driving curses and geases might not even need statting out.

 

* There's a fairy tale specific version of TK called "animate", which turns inanimate objects into automatons.  IIRC it was a +1/2 advantage in the 1st ed. FH Spell Book supplement, which also had guidance for statting out various objects based on shape, size, and articulation.  Now that I think about it, though, Summon might be more appropriate...

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...