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Barnum

Department 32: The Mysterium (OOC)

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Cato: HP - 0, Fatigued


Department 32: The Mysterium is the little-known and much reviled "mystical investigation" department of the FCPD. Department 32 only has 3 full-time employees: The elderly Captain Spiros Soukis who serves as the department's liaison, CO, and archivist and two investigators (the players). Ginny Warner, a volunteer who only holds the rank of "Cadet," also works for Department 32.

Character Creation Guidelines:

1. PL 4 (60 PPs)

2. Max Ability Scores: 18

3. Trade-offs: +/-1 is the trade-off cap for agent characters.

4. Max Save DC Modifier: +6

(Note: This only applies to equipment bonuses; otherwise normal PL limits apply)

5. Niche Protection: Players may select one trait (ability score, save, combat score, or skill) and increase the PL cap on that trait by +1 (+2 for a skill) for their character. No other player can take that ability or skill as the niche for their character, and this niche cap bonus is in addition to trade-offs.

6. Equipment: Characters should only have the Equipment feat for their personal gear. Weapons, armor, and vehicles will be dispensed by the FCPD to the characters.

7. Skills: We will be allowing the following additional skills from the MaMa (and other standard D20 sources): Appraise, Demolitions, Forgery, Gamble, Navigate, Repair, and Research.

8. Feats: We will be allowing many of the feats from the MaMa (on a case-by-case basis).

9. Benefit (Rank): Characters may have 1 rank of the Benefit (Rank) feat to start, essentially making them Officers in the FCPD. One character may take 2 or 3 ranks of Benefit (Rank), making them a Sergeant (+1 Agency Bonus), or a Lieutenant (+2 Agency Bonus).

10. Luck: Characters may have up to their PL (4) in ranks of Luck (instead of the usual 1/2 PL).

11. Mystical Stuff: Characters may have up to 4 PPs worth of mystical devices that must be "paid for" with mystical-relevant drawbacks. These powers must be genre appropriate (subtle, gritty mystical stuff). Mystical bonuses are capped at +6 (same as Equipment).

You can post your characters here, and we'll work out the details as quickly as possible.

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Any word on when you guys are going to be ready?

*pokes*

Sorry, been very busy at work plus coming home late, my creative energies have been at an ebb; look for a character submission in the newxt two days :)

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Sorry, been very busy at work plus coming home late, my creative energies have been at an ebb; look for a character submission in the newxt two days :)

Awesome. I'll send Seren a reminder PM. I hope to start this weekend.

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Sorry about taking so long, just been an off week...

I have been building, just need to work it into a sheet. I could probably have a sheet up today or (very) early tomorrow...

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Here's the first draft of the sheet. If there's anything you need to know/add/have me add, let me know.

Player's Name: Seren

Power Level: 4 (60 PPs)

Unspent PPs: 0

Trade-offs:

+1 Attack / -1 Save

+0 Defense / -0 Toughness

Character's Name: Herbert Russell

Alternate Identity:

Height: 5’ 10â€Â

Weight: 185 lbs.

Hair: Black

Eyes: Blue

Description:

If he were more active, Herb would be an imposing figure. However, while it’s not exactly easy to explain what it is, something about how he carries himself lets people know that he is a computer geek. He’s a bit unfit, although since joining Department 32 he has begun to get better fit – it’s just tough to keep up an active exercise when you’re not used to it.

Those that pay attention to such things will likely note that he rarely stares at anything. His eyes are often darting somewhat quickly, taking in whatever area he finds himself in.

History:

As a kid, Herb was always the little nerd that spent all his time in the library and excelled in most of his classes. As he grew up, he had a few growth spurts and started becoming more well-rounded. Yet, he remained in libraries, bookstores and online nearly constantly.

For quite a while, he made a living buying and selling various things online. Being a natural at knowing what to look for, he could find information on some of the hardest to find items as well as where and how to sell the same.

An interesting side-effect was that his mind seemed to naturally make connections quickly, as well as noticing things different, even in his own mind. After an encounter involving the department, Herb was part of a group of civilians that was taken out of the area temporarily and faced with something that affected the minds of most of the others. Herb was unfazed and as the group made a quick escape, learned of where it’s at.

After a few weeks, Herb found his way in to talk with the Department and was soon had a full-time job. He still works online on occasion (and, while some don’t like it, those occasions tend to be in the office).

Since joining, Herbert has decided that he wants to become a detective, and possibly eventually get out of the Mysterium and into the main FCPD. With his natural abilities, as well as his new morning exercises, he’s starting to get closer to his goal.

Stats:

Strength: 12 (+1)

Dexterity: 10 (+0)

Constitution: 14 (+2)

Intelligence: 18 (+4)

Wisdom: 16 (+3)

Charisma: 10 (+0)

Combat:

Attack +2, +3 [melee], +5 [Tonfa]

Grapple +4

Damage +1 [unarmed], +2 [Tonfa]

Defense +4, +1 [flat-footed]

Initiative +0

Saves:

Toughness +3, +2 [normal]

Fortitude +2

Reflex +1

Will +4

Skills:

Computers 5 (+9)

Gather Information 9 (+9)

Investigate 9 (+13)

Knowledge [Arcane Lore] 4 (+8)

Knowledge [behavioral Sciences] 2 (+6)

Knowledge [Civics] 2 (+6)

Knowledge [Current Events] 4 (+8)

Knowledge [streetwise] 1 (+5)

Knowledge [Tactics] 4 (+8)

Notice 6 (+9)

Profession [Detective] 1 (+3)

Profession [Online Retailer] 5 (+7)

*Research 11 (+15)

Search 4 (+8)

Sense Motive 5 (+8)

Feats:

Attack Focus [melee]

Attack Specialization [Tonfa]

Benefit [use Knowledge (Tactics) for Master Plan]

Defensive Roll 1

Dodge Focus 1

Equipment 1

Luck 1

Master Plan

Quick Draw

Ultimate Effort [Will save]

Equipment:

Camera (1ep)

Cell Phone (1ep)

Computer [Laptop] (1ep)

Tonfa [Mighty Damage 1, Crit 20] (2ep)

Cost:

Abilities (20) + Combat (10) + Saves (2) + Skills (18) + Feats (10) = 60/60 points

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I like him a lot, Seren! On the plus side, I think you don't have to pay for some of that equipment, as it will be issued by the department, and I think cellphones are considered free as long as you don't have a Wealth impairment, but Barnum will no doubt elaborate.

I was out most of yesterday, but I'm pretty much home all day today, so I will be posting Lt Colby here shortly; she was an anthropology major at Freedom College, and has the Ritualist feat, as long as B is okay with that ;)

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Upon consideration, I think I'll nix the Ritualist since it takes a little from our NPC mage B mentioned, plus it looks like it kight be hard ;) Instead I'm opting for Trance, an ability she picked up as part of her studies and as a way to relieve on-the-job stress.

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Here's the stats-only version of the character, still working out the personality and details

Name: Lt. Morena Colby

Power Level: 4

Initiative: +2

Attack: +2 (+4 Pistol)

Defense: + 3

Toughness: +4 (+2 U shirt, +1 Defensive Roll)

Fortitude: +3

Reflex: +4

Will: +3

Abilities:

Strength: 12 (+1)

Dexterity: 14/ (+2)

Constitution: 12 (+1)

Intelligence: 14 (+2)

Wisdom: 12 (+1)

Charisma: 14(+2)

Skills:

Bluff- 3/ +5

Craft: Artistic- 1/ +3

Diplomacy- 2/ +4

Drive- 2/ +4

Gather Information- 6/ +8

Intimidate- 2/ +4

Investigate- 4/ +6

Knowledge: Arcane Lore- 2/ +4

Knowledge: Art- 1/ +3

Knowledge: Current Events- 2/ +4

Knowledge: Streetwise- 2/ +4

Knowledge: Theology and Philosophy- 4/ +6

Medicine- 1/ +2

Notice- 4/ +5

Perform: Percussion Instruments- 1/ +3

Profession: Police Officer-4 / +5

Search- 4/ +6

Sense Motive- 4/ +5

Survival- 2/ +3

Swim- 1/ +2

Feats:

Attack Specialization 1 (pistol)

Benefit 3 (Lieutenant)

Contacts

Defensive Roll 1

Equipment 2*

Luck 2

Precise Shot

Quick Draw

Trance

Equipment:

Binoculars*

Cell phone

Flashlight*

Handcuffs

Laptop*

Light pistol (also owns personal sidearm*)

Multi-tool*

Undercover shirt

Abilities 18 + Skills 13 (52 ranks) + Feats 13 + Combat 10 + Saves 6 = 60

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Great, I'll look over these tonight, PM spectrevk, and hopefully we'll start soon. :)

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I like him a lot, Seren! On the plus side, I think you don't have to pay for some of that equipment, as it will be issued by the department, and I think cellphones are considered free as long as you don't have a Wealth impairment, but Barnum will no doubt elaborate.

I'm thinking it's a matter of availability.

In my specific example, I could probably get away with not purchasing any of the equipment. Being slightly above normal wealth (5 ranks of Profession adds a +1, at least generally), he'd have a cell phone and could easily get a simple camera. The tonfa could easily be supplied by the department, and for computer use - well, there's always places that I can get onto a computer.

However, lots of people forget their phones or don't charge them when they need to. So, yeah, you own one, but it's not much use if you don't have it on you (or if you can't use it). The ep is basically saying that you're one of those that always brings it with and charges it whenever you're at home for extended periods of time. Of course, after a week or two without access to electricity and it'll be out (or various other things)

A Device version (the next step up) would be a cell that can recharge itself when not in use and is probably tougher than normal phones. It's significantly more expensive, but it's almost guaranteed to work well for you.

Computer and camera are similar, in that he's gotten used to bringing them with him, so it's second nature to bring them with (rather than to leave them at home).

As for the tonfa, I was thinking more along the lines of what he'd have when not on duty. That, and he's not great with the guns. He's a decent shot, yes (a +2 bonus for a PL4 means he only misses 10% of the time when the average person of his skill level wouldn't). Then again, he's better at avoiding damage than dealing it. Even with his best weapon.

But then, the equipment that he does get from the department is still useful. Any protective gear will allow him slightly better protection if he's not expecting it, and would allow him to take more damage while having a better chance of avoiding it (if he makes a reflex save that Defensive Roll can boost the bonus for, while the armor brings him back up to his limit).

Weapons would allow him to do better damage, as his current is fairly low.

As for Ritualist, if I remember right, I could actually use a HP to attempt one. But then, that would be much more of an amazing feat that may never be repeated.

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Seren,

I only see two small things. First, you are 2 points over. I count 62 PPs. You have 18 PPs in abilities not 16. Second, you need to round your flat-footed defense bonus down to +1 (Looks like you bought +3).

Here's the first draft of the sheet. If there's anything you need to know/add/have me add, let me know.

Player's Name: Seren

Power Level: 4 (60 PPs)

Unspent PPs: 0

Trade-offs:

+1 Attack / -1 Save

+1 Defense / -1 Toughness

Character's Name: Herbert Russell

Alternate Identity:

Height: 5’ 10â€Â

Weight: 185 lbs.

Hair: Black

Eyes: Blue

--Snip--

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Heritage, as soon as we get your fluff text, we'll be ready to start.

Here's the stats-only version of the character, still working out the personality and details

Name: Lt. Morena Colby

Power Level: 4

Initiative: +2

Attack: +2 (+4 Pistol)

Defense: + 3

-Snip-

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Seren,

I only see two small things. First, you are 2 points over. I count 62 PPs. You have 18 PPs in abilities not 16. Second, you need to round your flat-footed defense bonus down to +1 (Looks like you bought +3).

You're right on the ability cost - that's a bit odd... (that I made the mistake, not that you're right)

However, the flat-footed defense is defense without the dodge bonus. Page 32 (Chapter 2, Defense Bonus, under Dodge Bonus) says that half the defense bonus (rounded down) is the dodge bonus. Unless I missed something (which I'll admit's completely possible), it does get rounded up.

I'll look at the ability tomorrow...

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ltcolbycrop.jpg

Character Name: Lt. Morena Colby

Power Level: 4 (60 pps)

Height: 5' 6"

Weight: 128 lbs.

Hair: Light Brown

Eyes: Brown

Description: An attractive young woman in her late twenties, Morena dresses fairly conservatively on the job in jacket, slacks and sensible shoes, but she does her best to look stylish within the limits of her budget. She usually wears one or two pieces of jewelry of her own design, typically a necklace and bracelet in a naturalistic design. Off duty, she indulges her passion for tie-dye t-shirts, baggy cargo pants and sandals, switching to clunky boots in cooler weather, with her hair worn up in haphazard fashion if she's working on an art project.

History: The Colbys are a police dynasty in Freedom City, a proud tradition that Morena resisted for many years; brought up in a working-class Lutheran family, she found herself yearning for a more passionate spiritual experience, and devoured books on other countries and cultures from a very young age. Against her parents' wishes, she left home to attend Freedom College, eventually earning a dual Bachelors degree in Anthropology and Comparative Religion; while in school, she also became very interested in indigenous art from around the world, as well as West African drumming. Ultimately she remained a (partially lapsed) Lutheran, but she feels her explorations of world culture have filled a hole in heart that the faith of parents was never able to do. She also experimented with transcendental mediation (and truth be told, a few hallucinogens), and has gotten quite good at self-inducing a trance.

However, tragedy soon led her life down a different path; shortly after she finished school, Morena's father, a long-serving officer on the Southside, was kidnapped and ritualistically murdered by a drug-dealing cult linked to the Mayombe. Her knowledge of the cult and its symbols allowed her to help the police find him, but not in time to save his life. Deciding to apply her passion to the family tradition of service, Morena enrolled in the police academy two weeks later, and she rose swiftly through the ranks until she finally made detective.

Morena has developed many interests to help her cope with the stresses of police work. In her off-hours, she likes to work in her studio, a converted garage behind the West End house she bought two years ago (she rents out the second floor apartment); she prefers oil painting, sculpture and pottery, and also teaches them to children at a local community center on weekends, in addition to meditation classes for their parents. She also still drums with a percussion group based on the Freedom College campus once a month, and owns several djembes. And at least twice a year, she goes with friends on a week-long backpacking trip, typically to Upstate New York or the Carolinas.

Abilities:

Strength: 12 (+1)

Dexterity: 14/ (+2)

Constitution: 12 (+1)

Intelligence: 14 (+2)

Wisdom: 12 (+1)

Charisma: 14(+2)

Attack: +2 (+4 Pistol)

Defense: + 3

Initiative: +2

Saves:

Toughness: +4 (+2 U shirt, +1 Defensive Roll)

Fortitude: +3

Reflex: +4

Will: +3

Skills:

Bluff- 3/ +5

Craft: Artistic- 1/ +3

Diplomacy- 2/ +4

Drive- 2/ +4

Gather Information- 6/ +8

Intimidate- 2/ +4

Investigate- 4/ +6

Knowledge: Arcane Lore- 2/ +4

Knowledge: Art- 1/ +3

Knowledge: Current Events- 2/ +4

Knowledge: Streetwise- 2/ +4

Knowledge: Theology and Philosophy- 4/ +6

Medicine- 1/ +2

Notice- 4/ +5

Perform: Percussion Instruments- 1/ +3

Profession: Police Officer-4 / +5

Search- 4/ +6

Sense Motive- 4/ +5

Survival- 2/ +3

Swim- 1/ +2

Feats:

Attack Specialization 1 (pistol)

Benefit 3 (Lieutenant)

Contacts

Defensive Roll 1

Equipment 2*

Luck 2

Precise Shot

Quick Draw

Trance

Equipment:

Binoculars*

Cell phone

Flashlight*

Handcuffs

Laptop*

Light pistol (also owns personal sidearm*)

Multi-tool*

Undercover shirt

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Once I started writing up her character, I realized why it was so easy to picture Morena working on art; Rachael Leigh Cook played the art nerd Laney Boggs in She's All That!

Oh well, I still think it works well for her character :D

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However, the flat-footed defense is defense without the dodge bonus. Page 32 (Chapter 2, Defense Bonus, under Dodge Bonus) says that half the defense bonus (rounded down) is the dodge bonus. Unless I missed something (which I'll admit's completely possible), it does get rounded up.

When you are "flat-footed" you lose *all* of your Dodge Focus bonus (p.60) and 1/2 of any remaining Defense bonus (rounded down). So your flat-footed Defense bonus is 1/2 of your raw Defense score (the score you bought for 2 PPs/rank) rounded down.

Once I started writing up her character, I realized why it was so easy to picture Morena working on art; Rachael Leigh Cook played the art nerd Laney Boggs in She's All That!

:D I love that movie.

We are ready to go then. We are just waiting on spectrevk to jump in.

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When you are "flat-footed" you lose *all* of your Dodge Focus bonus (p.60) and 1/2 of any remaining Defense bonus (rounded down). So your flat-footed Defense bonus is 1/2 of your raw Defense score (the score you bought for 2 PPs/rank) rounded down.

I agree with the first sentence. The second doesn't.

We'll use my +3 bonus with 2 ranks of Dodge Focus (for +5 under normal conditions) as an example.

When you are "flat-footed" you lose *all* of your Dodge Focus bonus (p.60)

Removing the 2 ranks gives a +3.

and [you lose] 1/2 of any remaining Defense bonus (rounded down).

Half of +3 is 1.5. Round down to 1. I lose 1 rank of my Defense bonus, leaving me at +2.

So your flat-footed Defense bonus is 1/2 of your raw Defense score (the score you bought for 2 PPs/rank) rounded down.

Raw defense bonus (+3), halved (+1.5), rounded down (+1).

So, your first sentence says I get +2 but your second (which appears to be summing up the first) says I get +1.

Looking through the other heroes here, I get something odd though...

Doesn't lose any raw Defense - The Emissary

Rounds down - Velocity, Nightshyft, Markus Eldritch

Doesn't mention, but would have to round - Valkyrie, Dead-Boy, Grimalkin, The Legionnaire

The rest have bought even ranks of raw Defense, so don't have to round.

So, it does seem that it's commonly rounded down here - which is fine if it's the rule here, but your first response disagrees with it (and it's not mentioned in the game rules).

If you lose half your raw defense (rounded down), you're left with half your raw defense (rounded up) for your flat-footed Defense bonus.

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Yep, that is how we've been doing it. :)

Speck and I are getting started. I'll post here when we are ready for you guys to join us.

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I should've checked in yesterday; sorry about that. Sleepy-headed Catherine Kato is ready to go now, however.

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I'm posting now . . . or rather, I have started posting about 3 times this evening. I should get it done soon enough.

*crosses fingers*

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Hmm, are we also present at Catherine's house, like standing behind the captain and the cadet, or will we get a separate intro? Just curious.

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Yep, that is how we've been doing it. :)

Speck and I are getting started. I'll post here when we are ready for you guys to join us.

Alright then.

Herbert's all ready to go, then. :)

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Hmm, are we also present at Catherine's house, like standing behind the captain and the cadet, or will we get a separate intro? Just curious.

Speck and I are getting started. I'll post here when we are ready for you guys to join us.

Shouldn't be too long.

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Alrighty, almost there.

We need one more concluding post from spectrevk. As short or as long as you like, taking us right up until you head out to Lantern Hill just before 3:00.

Then I'll post, setting the scene, and then our two agents can jump in. And we'll be off! :D

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