Every so often the topic of a new edition of In Nomine gets floated on the Steve Jackson Games forum. It goes on for a little bit and then we are reminded that there is a core disagreement within the SJG team as to what direction it would take. Continue reading
There are some things that can beat smartness and foresight? Awkwardness and stupidity can. The best swordsman in the world doesn’t need to fear the second best swordsman in the world; no, the person for him to be afraid of is some ignorant antagonist who has never had a sword in his hand before; he doesn’t do the thing he ought to do, and so the expert isn’t prepared for him; he does the thing he ought not to do; and often it catches the expert out and ends him on the spot.
– Mark Twain
One of the notable characteristics of the d666 system is that outcomes are mostly divorced from skill. A neophyte really does have a chance to best an expert. Continue reading
There are two main parts to every In Nomine NPC: motivation and stats
Motivations are hard to generate randomly (and tend to involve large and mostly arbitrary charts). I don’t really advocate for that approach.
Take the time between sessions to build about a dozen personality profiles. Include likely results for Seraphim, Elohim, Habbalah, Malakite, Lilim, and Mercurian resonance. You may not be able to predict whether or not you’re going to need a “baker” or a “lawyer” but you will eventually need someone. Once you know who your PCs are approaching, pick the personality profile that fits best and start adding stats. Continue reading
While I doubt it was intentional, Kyriotates ended up being easily one of the most powerful and versatile choirs.
- They can take multiple actions in the same round
- They can be multiple places simultaneously
- They are exceptionally hard to kill
- They do not need to purchase vessels or roles
They are effectively faster than Ofanim, more capable in combat than Calabim, more tenacious than Malakim, and arguably better guardians than Cherubim. With a high Agility and enough vessels, a single Kyriotate can typically end a fight in the first round. This would be fine if combat was their intended role, but it’s not. If anything, they are supposed to be one of the choirs least inclined towards combat because any damage they leave on their vessels causes dissonance. Continue reading
Given how rich a world Steve Jackson created for In Nomine, I am consistently surprised by how few actual options there are for Resources. In this post will list out several categories of Resource I think should be part of the game, and whether or not they are.
This might (in turn) help inform whether or not there should be more Character Points awarded at character creation (but that would be an exercise for a future post). Continue reading
So I’ve been thinking about Discords again. I do like how In Nomine openly embraces the idea of doling out disadvantages as a consequence of role-playing decisions. However, it often feels like the Corporeal Discords lack any real distinction.
Most of them are just variations of “thing which makes other people not like you.”
By Em of UNIMPORTANTHERO
If ever there were evidence that fantasy worlds are often a refuge for unexamined prejudices, it is not found in the goblins and the orcs as easily as it is found in the contemporary stereotypes which are placed in these fantasy worlds without alteration. I am referring in this entry to the Vistani – the obvious and cartoonish Dungeons & Dragons insertion of Romani peoples into the Ravenloft campaign world. These gothic-genre Gypsies were first introduced in 1983 with the original Ravenloft module and embodied the most banal qualities of the stereotyped Romani person. They were written as mysterious and exotic permanent outsiders whose ability to foretell the future was dependent on remaining forever mobile, on never settling in one location for more than a week lest they suffer grave sickness and be labelled outcasts by their own people. Vistani society was matriarchal in intent if not in practice and men who possessed the the mystic abilities which defined the Vistani were treated with distrust and often outcast in order to prevent some cataclysm.
If I stop working out for three years, I won’t be in as good of shape when I start up again. Ditto if I stop playing chess, stop writing, or stop making websites. Our skills and abilities deteriorate without use and yet this is almost never modeled by role playing games.
Considering that rather meteoric growth exhibited by player characters (from novice to Master’s degree in the course of a game week is not particularly uncommon), it feels like atrophy would be a good moderating force to keep player characters from getting too far from the universe they inhabit.
Most role playing games with point-buy character generation have some form of disadvantage system. In Nomine is no exception. Throughout the manuals you will find a number of negative quirks (called Discords) that impede the character and reward the player with additional points for building their character by way of compensation. However, there are some very severe problems with how In Nomine has implemented its disadvantage system.