Monday, August 20, 2012

The Question of Eldumanity

Alright, so I think I figured out the whole Elduman thing. For starters, here is the original:

  • Regeneration (Very Fast) 100 points
  • Costs Fatigue Points (2 FP) -10%
  • Emergencies Only (works when I say it does, but tied to adrenaline/excitement) -30%
  • Psychic Healing ability (doesn't function in anti-psi effects) -10%
  • 50 points after limitations

That is what I initially conceived that the Elduman ability to reconstitute their crystalline flesh was. Basically, in a fight where an Elduman gets excited (making it a really poor decision to take any "combat and blood and death are boring" advantages) the ability kicks on and drains their FP. This makes it a 50 point ability, which is a fifth of the character points I would allow in a Hekinoe game, not counting bonus points for disadvantages. Its a really good ability, and charging the fatigue points sets it going for a solid minute before it turns off or drains more FP. A minute is sixty rounds of combat. It basically ensures that an Elduman or an Elduman Descended Uncout with the ability will be at full hit points following almost any battle. Assuming they survive it. The Elduman ability in Pathfinder doesn't heal, it just prevents the damage by paying power points and causes the Elduman to not be dealt any damage. Regeneration kind of misses the main point of this ability, the prevention of damage. While writing at some previous point on the blog about GURPS it popped into my head that perhaps Damage Resistance, rather than Regeneration, was the way to go with this ability. So I tweaked it. Here is what I came up with:

  • Damage Resistance 12 60 points
  • Semi-Ablative (every 10 points of damage reduces the DR by 1 point until it heals) -20%
  • Costs Fatigue Points (1 FP) -5%
  • Emergencies Only (only works when I say it does, but tied to adrenaline/excitement) -30%
  • Psychic Healing ability (doesn't function in anti-psi effects) -10%
  • 21 points after limitations

So that is the new version. It is cheaper, if a bit less flashier. It also fulfills the intent of the ability by preventing the Elduman from ever taking damage. Basically what it does is reduce all damage dealt to the Elduman by 12 points. However, because it is semi-ablative, it slowly decreases in strength. We can attribute that to mental strain from the Elduman binding every atom of its physical form together with its psychic power. To give you an idea, a GURPS version KMT Revolver does 3d -2 p+ damage. What that means is a bullet from the revolver does 3d6-2 damage, and any damage that gets through damage resistance does 1.5 times damage. On average the weapon will do 9 damage, which is completely prevented by the damage resistance of the ability and is not sufficient enough to reduce it. Elduman can take bullets from a large caliber revolver (.45, specifically) and survive. This ability does not preclude the use of armor either, so you can pile on some TL 5 armor and if that doesn't stop the damage, you have the Elduman ability beneath it as an additional layer of protection. Ablative Damage Resistance heals the same as hit points, you make a HT roll at the end of every day of rest and if you succeed, you heal one point. Various healing effects like First Aid skill use and the Healing ability can restore it much faster. 

Additionally, because the Elduman are utterly inhuman and basically a crystal lifeform animated by psychic power, I have given them the Unhealing (Partial) disadvantage. This means they can only heal naturally when a certain circumstance is met (haven't quite figured that out yet, whoops), by stealing hit points via stuff like Vampiric Bite or Leech, or through psionics and magic. This frees up more points to power up this Damage Resistance ability if you want to further improve it, or you could buy off the Semi-Ablative portion of it. Whatever. 

I'm actually really quite pleased with the Damage Resistance version of the ability. It just really fits with the intent of the ability in a way that the Regeneration version did not. Plus, I really really enjoy diving into my books and trying to tweak this system to get precisely what I am looking for from it. 

Unfortunately, talking about the partial healing and the reconstitution of crystalline flesh and whatnot has got me thinking. If Eldumans are in fact a nervous system sheathed in crystal matter that is animated and given life by their psychic power, would it perhaps be appropriate for them to have Injury Tolerance (No Blood) or (No Brain) or (No Vital) or perhaps even the mighty (Unliving)? I mean, the first three are cheap, at five points a piece. Unliving is a twenty point ability though, and if I determine that all four are appropriate, we're looking at a thirty-five point increase in the cost of the Elduman racial template, which already sits at forty-one points. Forty-one isn't that bad, especially considering Soulless rate at a mighty one hundred and thirty-one points for their template. 

Might have to think on this more for a bit. 

In other news, I've converted Gob, Eran, and Karrak to 250 point GURPS characters. I was originally working on building Bartelby from Dogma (came in at 350 points with wings and various vision powers and a flaming sword) for Jeremy, but then we got to talking and he wants to play Scrooge McDuck and I got distracted by the Damage Resistance thing. Might post those at some point. 

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