Thursday, June 30, 2011

Entry: 00-023: Playable Classes: Geno-Perfect Human Javelin Pilot & the Grimkin Swarm

Geno Perfect Human Javelin Pilot and the Grimkin Swarm
by Wedge, Co-Creator

This is the second post in a regular update series which will reveal all 10 playable Iconic Character Templates (or classes) that will be available in Chronicles of the Void. Each one includes a bit of CotV fiction to set the stage for the origins of the class, a Game Play Overview section to get an idea of how each might be played, and finally a short blurb about our Iconic CotV Character which the class is based off of.

Today we feature our two classes which have the ability to pilot heavily armed mechanized suits into battle, I gave you the Geno-Perfect Human Javelin Pilot and the Grimkin Swarm.

3) Geno-Perfect Human Javelin Pilot

Geno-Perfect are a new generation of children born into the custody of a corporation. Conceived in a fertility laboratory from the combination of 647 unique genes sampled from some of the most exceptional individuals in history. Raised by a staff of expert caretakers and are given the highest level of education and serve as representations of the pinnacle of human evolution exalting the feats which science has allowed us to ascend.

Geno-Perfect humans have a staggering genetic resume including ambidexterity, short sleeper, an eidetic memory, supertaster, and absolute pitch among many others. In addition, they are the first humans which are able to physiologically compete in Migrathon.

Officially Migrathon is described as a 5 day, non-stop 5,000 mile run across some of the most dangerous and savage terrain in the universe, players (or Javelin as they are popularly called) are ranked in the order that they finish the course. Each course is meticulously chosen and plotted ahead of time to take the Javelins through inhospitable environments, deadly local fauna, and unpredictable weather. Each Javelin wears a fusion powered mechanical suit that prescribes to MORA (Migrathon Offical Ruling Authority) guidelines and is additionally allowed one projectile rifle with 3 cartridges, one plasma handgun with a 5 Megawatt charge, and one retractable uni-gauntlet oscillating nano-blade. Each Javelin begins the course 1 mile apart but they ultimately converge on a finish line is a 100 foot arch at the end of the course. Along the way each Javelin has 4 waypoints that they must reach that are plotted by satellite and transmitted to each Javelin's topographical interface, in order to mathematically ensure that each Javelin must cross the same total distance to reach the finish line. Direct contact between Javelins is forbidden on the course (no touching or firing upon opponents), but indirect action that effects other players is permitted.

Unofficially a Migrathon is one of the most unpredictable, cutthroat, and deadly games in the civilized universe. Last season, there was a fatality rate of 14.4% among Javelin players, with causes ranging from cardiac failure to sabotage to decapitation by the Greater Ibaquin of Malcor who has claimed the lives of no less than 4 Javelin players while crossing through their traditional mating grounds when the course was first introduced during last year's quarter final elimination tournament. Javelin players are tested mentally, physically, morally, and tactically at all times when on the course and quite literally only the strongest survive.

You are a Geno-Perfect Human Javelin Pilot.

Game Play Overview: As a Geno-Perfect Human you have access to a wide array of specilized skills representing the best of what Humanity has to offer including ambidexterity, short sleeper, an eidetic memory, supertaster, absolute pitch and many more. As a Javelin Pilot you will oversee the battlefield in your highly armored and heavily armed mechanized Javelin suit. You are the most sturdy character in the game with massive weapons only weldable by mechanized suits, but your size and power comes at a penalty to coordination forcing you to act less frequently then all other characters.

Iconic Character: Kinaso Life (female Human) Confident, determined, and resourceful Kinaso is a human Geno-Perfect child raised by the Life Corporation famous across the Universe as the top Migrathon athlete piloting the heavily armored mechanized javelin suit Silver Needle before she became a Marshal of Ash.

4) Grimkin Swarm

The Grimkin are originally from the planet Renoyl where the top of the food chain is dominated by massive predators on the scale of the dinosaurs from ancient Earth. On such a competitive world the evolutionary strategy the Grimkin took for survival was to stay small and unnoticed by the bigger animals. Measuring only 4'' to 6’’ tall at full height they flutter about on insect like wings. The Grimkin go unnoticed by the massive predators on their home world and they live in tight family swarms which typically range from 15 to 50 individuals. A Grimkin swarm is always together as they are inherently social animals that despise solitude.

While Grimkin swarms appear to maintain a type of shared consciousness, they are in fact still a collection of individuals all with their own personalities, needs, and desires that operate in extremely close coordination. However, the survival skills of an individual Grimkin which is separated from their swarm are drastically reduced, and a single swarm exhibits behavior which is greater than the sum of its parts. The Grimkin are particularly adept problem solvers, able to attack a puzzle with many pairs of hands and minds working together to complete a task that often results in surprisingly effective results. While they rarely ever choose the correct solution on their first try, the Grimkin are extremely persistent and will exhaust every possible option in a brute force kind of strategy to solving any complex problem.

When the first explorers came to the planet Renoyl and performed their survey of the local fauna and flora, the Grimkin were not recognized as a sentient race, but rather as a kind of vermin that found a way to infest the surveyor’s spacecraft and were unintentionally and unknowingly transported off world. Since then, the Grimkin have spread to nearly every habitable zone across the known universe showing alarming adaptability. Wherever they go, they assimilate local languages and customs leading to a high degree of variability between Grimkin swarms across various regions. Their colonization is so uniform that it is difficult to find any civilized habitat without them.

The Grimkin are garbologists and have developed a knack for fixing broken devices by cobbling together their own contraptions using the materials on hand. Unfortunately for everyone else the Grimkin enjoy fixing things so much that they often run out of broken devices to fix and start dismantling various operational systems in order to "improve" them leading to dubious results more often than not.

Perhaps one of the Grimkin most troubling adaptations to the modern society is their construction of human sized mechanized suits which are generally referred to as Techni-Behemoths. Many cite the massively popular and brutal sport Miagrathon as the culprit behind the Grimkin's obsession with building these monstrosities. Regardless, nearly every swarm ends up building their own custom Techni-Behemoth, complete with enough hatches, turrets, consoles, and even a fully functional command bridge allowing the entire swarm to ride around in a heavily armed mechanical golem wreaking havoc among the other larger creatures.

By nature Grimkin are capricious and unpredictable. They are stubborn and while they work very well with each other, they require enticement to work with other creatures. Gifts, services and IOUs are the currency of the Grimkin , although many individuals find that they come out on the raw end of any deals made with the Grimkin, which has led to the common universal slang describing a no win situation or a poor bargain as a “Grimkin Deal”.

Game Play Overview: Challenging and unique role playing opportunities as you play as a swarm of small flying aliens that act, think, and eat as one. These little guys are some of the Universe's most creative innovators and use that talent to build “human sized” mechanized suits called Techni-Behemoths that they pilot into battle. They couple high armor and powerful weaponry when piloting their Techni-Behimoth with extreme vulnerability if ever caught in dangerous situations outside of their suit where they are easily picked off.

Iconic Character: Gups (Grimkin Swarm) - Skilled inventors and engineers this family of Grimkin is composed of 20 individuals that share a collective intelligence and an affinity for practical jokes while serving as honorary Marshals of Ash ever since they made their home aboard the starship Overwatch.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Entry: 00-022: Playable Classes: Prime Arbiter & Aqasoo Latent Nova Psionic

Playable Classes: Prime Arbiter & Aqasoo Latent Nova Psionic

by: Wedge Smith, Co-Creator

This is the first post in a regular update series which will reveal all 10 playable Iconic Character Templates (or classes) that will be available in Chronicles of the Void. Each one includes a bit of CotV fiction to set the stage for the origins of the class, a Game Play Overview section to get an idea of how each might be played, and finally a short blurb about our Iconic CotV Character which the class is based off of. So without further preamble I give you the Prime Arbiter and the Aqasoo Latent Nova Psionic.

1) Prime Arbiter

Nearly 400 years ago the Trans Solar Unified Protectorate (TSUP) discovered the planet 71099-Vorenas on a routine drone scouting mission. Included in the drone's report alongside descriptions of the planet's extremely irregular orbit, violent sandstorms, and volatile tectonic activity was a geological mineral analysis that indicated planet 71099-Vorenas to have 357 million tons of raw Multonium. At this time of the discovery this amount of Multonium represented approximately 77.239% of all Multonium in the known Universe.

What followed was a gold rush fever, with mining operations as small as single freighter teams up to Multi-Galactic Corporations all scrambling to collect the fortune. Unfortunately for many, 71099-Vorenas, or M-Rock as it became called, was an uncommonly inhospitable planet that resisted all attempts to establish even rudimentary settlements. The poisonous atmosphere was so lethal that it killed any exposed living creature in seconds. The frequent sandstorms moving at supersonic velocities tore through even hardened bunkers and the highly erratic tectonic movement prevented any kind of subterranean colonies from taking root. In short M-Rock was nearly a perfect storm. The mortality rate for miners in the first year was 93%. To make matters worse, a large portion of fatalities were to non-ecological sources: booby traps set by other miners, sabotage of life support units, and outright banditry were commonplace. Most would be miners turned around and went home, or perished. Only a handful of the wealthiest miners were left 3 years after the initial discovery, but even for them, the cost of human and non-human resources lost in extraction of the Multonium was too high.

As a result, the TSUP launched a massive robotic drone development project that brought together the best AI scientists that money could buy. Within 3 years the mining drone project had created a series of highly adaptable robots which were designed to withstand the planet's harsh environment and who possessed complex solution matrix algorithms for problem solving since contact with the ground from orbit was unreliable in the best of times. The drones were launched to the planet from orbit, and were programmed to stockpile their mined Multonium in specific caches around the planet where transport ships would regularly rendezvous to collect the payload. The mining drones exceeded everyone's expectations within the first 6 months of their deployment, but they were not alone. A parallel drone mining project funded by the Abyss Corporation also launched a series of robotic mining drones only 4 months after the TSUP project went live, and the results were catastrophic. Details about the events that occurred on the planet M-Rock during this period are unacceptably few since the robotic mining drones were unable to communicate regularly with the orbital ships due to extreme solar radiation. But security footage from the transport ships that hauled the Multonium off planet confirm that in addition to their normal cargo, decapitated heads of rival mining robots were often found piled next to each shipment. Over the next two years a sort of arms race developed between TSUP and Abyss, as new drones were developed outfitted with military armaments and their AI was upgraded with guerrilla warfare tactics. Multonium shipments slacked, and the robotic body count reached incredible levels.

Then inexplicably one day, all contact with the mining droids on both sides suddenly ceased. The subsequent transport ships reached the Multonium rendezvous site and there were no more severed robot heads, just towering stacks of purified Multonium. From this day forward, the Multonium payload for each pickup site remained precisely the same. Any new drones sent to the planet abruptly cut off transmissions to their mother ships within minutes of making landfall, and no communication with the mining drones was re-established. While both TSUP and Abyss were curious about the change in behavior on the planet, they were both making profits hand over fist, and no further action on their part seemed necessary to maintain this profitable enterprise. The scientists and high level executives gradually shipped off to other exiting projects, and a minimal facility was left in orbit to continue to extract and ship the Multonium.

After nearly 200 years, the first report of an unregistered transport ship left the atmosphere of the planet M-Rock and disappeared in a flash as it entered a worm-hole space jump. The small orbital TSUP shipping facility logged the event but otherwise, business continued as usual. Twenty Seven days later, two additional ships emerged from the planet, one establishing a stable orbit around the planet and another which winked off into another worm-hole. The orbiting vessel's schematics matched no known model and it immediately began to release satellites around the planet. The TSUP crew watched as the unidentified ship docked with their space station, and from the airlock emerged robots the likes of which they have never seen before.

They identified themselves as the Prime Sovereign Robotic Nation, and demanded to be recognized as a free nation. These Prime robots launched Arbiters across the Universe to spread their culture and influence.

You are such an Arbiter.

Uniquely constructed your body is more a platform for a base of operations than a single unit. Prime Arbiters have a wide variety of specialized remote drones which dock on their body but are capable of performing directed independent action. Surveillance, munitions, assassination, and heavy weapons are just a few of the many drones in the arsenal of the Prime Arbiter.

Game Play Overview: Very resilient and adaptable the Prime Arbiter has the ability to use drones that dock on its body. High HP and armor make them very potent front line fighters with extensive customization by building new components directly into their chassis. The Prime Arbiter is also a skilled diplomat, with extensive knowledge of negotiation tactics.

Iconic Character: Dust (Prime Robot) Founding member of a race of highly intelligent robotic beings known as Prime he was an influential ambassador turned outlaw who has taken to the Marshals of Ash as his adopted family in exile, seeing himself as a self styled elder patriarch.

2) Aqasoo Latent Nova Psionic

The Aqasoo are an alien race which originated as amphibious humanoids but have since left the tidal pools and spend the majority of their lives on land. Physically all Aqasoo have vibrant chameleonic skin and hair that can shift colors and patterns at will. They also all share a long thin fin that runs the length of their spinal column and terminates at the buttock in a short flat tail. In addition, the Aqasoo have a unique ability to connect their highly evolved immune system with another individual, to rapidly help heal wounds or fight off infection. When healing, the Aqasoo harmonize with the patient's body by matching their skin tone and texture, and lay their hands on the point of injury or upon the patient's vital nodes. A small flat flap of skin in the hand is pushed open by increased blood pressure where a proboscis emerges. The probe has a cylindrical shape with many radiating vessels that allows them to make contact with another organism, latch on, and begin to feed defensive antibodies into the target organism and engorge the wounded site with blood to promote fast healing. This state is extremely taxing for both subjects and rest is often required after extended periods of healing.

Culturally the Aqasoo are an ancient race, that trace their origins far back before that of Humans. Over that time, they have evolved one of the most powerful genetic lines of Psionic warriors the Universe has ever known called Nova. They were regarded across the Universe as the highest form of mental warriors, able to shape the world around them with the awesome power of their minds.

Many respected and feared their prowess, and it is widely believed that one of the principle reasons that the Aqasoo were targeted first by the Banx Crusade was to wipe them off the battlefield quickly and decisively. Indeed the SERK, who fought with the Banx, designed entire armies with the single purpose of hunting down and destroying every living Nova psionic. Unfortunately for the Aqasoo and the rest of the civilized Universe, the SERK were exceedingly efficient, and the ensuing genocide exterminated Nova to the very last member.

Every member, except you.

The Nova psionic psyche is so sophisticated that even the most advanced technology is unable to detect or explain it with complete accuracy. It seems that Nova somehow perceived its imminent defeat and began to shut down its own expression, laying dormant in certain sleeper individuals, waiting for the right time to re-emerge. While Nova lives in secret, it also jealously guards its few remaining hosts. When Latent Nova Psionics undergo periods of extreme bodily or mental stress, the Nova psyche will take over, and the effects are terrible to behold.

Game Play Overview: The Aqasoo Latent Nova Psionic has the abilities to naturally heal others and is the most fluid and graceful of all the characters thanks for their race's genetics and the anti-gravity hover boots which are commonplace among Aqasoo. Generally they are lightly armored, and skilled with the Aqasoo Razor Wire, pistols and various other advanced weapons. They also express a special berserk type mode of play. When the character reaches their last wound track they gain the full power of a Nova Psionic and become a one person wrecking crew until they finally fall unconscious.

Iconic Character: Alizara Baylen (Female / Alien) Charismatic Aqasoo woman who hopes to rebuild her species' society after it was brutally ravaged during the Banx Crusade, she is deeply invested in the grand goal of the Marshals of Ash and sees herself as its matriarch. She discovered her Latent Nova Psionic powers in adulthood when her life was threatened by raiders. Now she not only carries the burden of finding a new home for her scattered people but also holds the key to the rebuilding of their heritage with the Nova psyche hidden within her.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Entry: 00-021: Armor

by Doug, Co-Creator 

 We have had a killer first week with the Kickstarter project and just want to thank everyone that has donated so far! At the current rate we will reach our goal so please don't hesitate if you or a friend want to help out and get some cool stuff for it. We have also updated the marketing pamphlet to explain more about character creation and game mechanics so give that a read if your interested.

 Now lets talk armor. Armor is an important part of survival in any RPG and lets look at some of the things armor will do for you in CotV. One of the most important things armor does for you is that it adds to your characters natural vitality to give you your total HP. In most cases (unless you are a specialized alien)  the majority of your HP comes from your armor, however the larger suits of armor that provide more protection also effect how coordinated a character can be meaning that heavily armored characters don't act as often as lightly armored characters. Armor also provides your natural protection from status effects such as, fire, disorientation, and becoming staggered.
Each suit of armor comes with a set amount of Upgrade Slots (US). We offer a plethora of different upgrades to purchase allowing you to completely customize each suit of armor with items like kinetic shielding, indirect marking lasers, boot thrusters, hidden missiles and even bionic grapplers! This means multiple players could own the same set of armor but they all perform differently depending on each players chosen upgrades! This is just one of the many ways you can customize your character like no other in the CotV universe.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Entry: 00-020: We survived A-Kon! (barely)

By, Doug Co-Creator
 Wow. A-Kon was awesome! Lot's of nice people (sometimes wearing things they probably shouldn't) and a packed gaming room that included Chronicles of the Void! We have put a ton of work lately into the spine (mechanics) of the game and it's really paying off. Not only did we have a full table but everyone had a blast and the combat felt great! We've included a momentum dice mechanic that everyone is loving but more on that latter. For now take a look at some pics from the kon.....

As you can see the early morning train ride paid off for a fun day of gaming! A big thanks to everyone that checked out the demo today and we hope to see you all at our next stop...Gen Con!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Entry: 00-019: Kickstarter Engaged!

Visit the site, check out the rewards, and donate the amount thats right for you. Please help us reach our $9,000 goal!