Monday, 14 January 2019

Adapting three SCPs to a traditional OSR game.



S.D. Locke's 001 Proposal- "When Day Breaks"
In this article, the sun itself has undergone some terrifying anomaly where any life that comes into contact with its rays mutate into horrible gelatinous creatures. These creatures can merge to form stronger versions of themselves. Some of them will try to maintain the shape they had in life, with mixed success. Almost the entirety of humanity is extinct, and only a skeleton crew from the foundation and a few other survivors exist in this nightmarish apocalypse.

For those out of the loop, the SCP wiki doesn't have a set 001, like it does with every other SCP number. Instead, users can submit their "001 Proposals", and it is up to the reader to decide which 001 Proposal is "canon" in their own interpretation of the Foundation's universe.

The entities can use stats like this:
  • Armour: As Leather
  • Hit Dice: 1 (base)
  • Hit Points: 5 per HD
  • Move: slower than human- see below
  • Damage: 1d6+X, X being the total of HD the creature has.
  • Size: Variable
  • Combining: Two instances of these creatures can combine, mixing their hit die total and current hit points. This raises their chances to hit something in combat and raises the damage of their slam attack. However, each time it combines with another creature the resulting bulk can mean it slows down. I'd rule this as its speed is 30ft - 5ft for every creature making it up. 12" - 2" per creature works in AD&D rules.
  • Anti-magic Properties: Someone converted into one of these creatures loses any magical or anomalous properties they had in life. In the article, a bunch of Keter-class anomalies escape in a containment breach, only to be destroyed upon contact with the sun's rays.
  • Undead: While it's not clarified on the page, I'd rule these creatures as undead, with all the bonuses and penalties that applies.
  • Gibbering: The gibbering from these entities is really unsettling.
  • Gelatinous Form: The gelatinous entities are immune to practically everything. The page only clarifies that "Conductive electrical weapons have proven partially effective at immobilizing instances, and may be used for self-defence. Incendiary weapons work as well. Cryonic munitions are the most effective thus far." In game terms, they are immune to all damage except Fire, Shock and Cold. They are vulnerable to cold, and take double damage from cold attacks.

This is a very bleak scenario, but a short campaign or one-shot with this as the main premise could be extremely interesting. Especially if the characters are part of a group that is trying to leave the plane (or planet, in a sci-fi game) to start over anew, in a world where the sun isn't actively trying to kill them. The entire campaign would include leaving only in the safety of darkness, and some weapons would be discarded for their uselessness against these entities.



SCP - 096 "The Shy Guy"
Fairly standard creepypasta monster, 096 is a long lanky humanoid that will hunt someone who sees its face to the ends of the earth before killing them. During this time, 096 shrieks uncontrollably as it chases the target.

SCP - 096
  • Armour: As Leather
  • Hit Dice: 8+8
  • Hit Points: 48
  • Move: 35ft (14", if a human's movement speed is 12")
  • Damage: 2 claws- 1d12+2 each
  • Size: L- SCP 096 is approximately 2.38m tall.
  • Lower Cognitive Functions: SCP 096 is specifically mentioned to be barely sapient. It has disadvantage on saving throws vs mind-affecting spells and powers.
  • Immune to suffocation: SCP-096 is contained in an airtight cell. It doesn't need to breathe.
  • Seeing its face: Anyone who passes 096 will see it quivering on its own. Any time someone approaches it, each round they must make a perception check at disadvantage to see its face. As long as they fail the perception check, 096 is docile. Whenever 096 sees someone's face, it immediately becomes extremely hostile to them and will charge forward intending to kill them.
  • Marked for Death: If 096 attacks someone who has seen its face, its attacks have advantage (roll twice for each attack and take the higher result) against that target.
  • Sanity: In the Eithlos campaign I use Call of Cthulhu-style sanity rules. For 096, I'd have two checks made. A 0/1d3 sanity check when first seen, and a 1d3/1d10 sanity check made if someone triggers 096's aggression.

Optional Alternative Rule: 
In the SCP article, 096 will chase its victims constantly, inevitably, and will eventually strike, killing them practically instantly. For some games, this will work just fine- particularly meat-grinder games, or an SCP themed Paranoia/ Call of Cthulhu game. For others however, this might be a bit of a buzzkill, to have their character doomed as soon as they pass a perception check. Below are some possible "escape methods" I propose for a character who's seen 096s face, but isn't ready to die yet:
  • Evading it for over a year. This is probably the least likely to ever actually happen, but if you go to another plane or something for a year that could work. 096 is extremely stupid, so it could be pretty easy to outrun him if you have some kind of plan.
  • Killing it. It's why I gave it stats, after all. It's got a lot of hit points and does a lot of damage, but a co-ordinated group can take it down.
  • Magically making it forget. The wiki mentions outright that "It shows no signs of any higher brain functions, and is not considered to be sapient.", which means it'll be easy to control. That in itself means it'd probably be easy to use Forget or Modify Memory on it to make it forget it saw a face.
  • Remove Curse, cast by a strong enough cleric. If you agree that 096 could be a cursed creature, this one could work very well.
  • Actually getting killed by it, and being resurrected. This possibility is not explored in SCP even though there's probably at least one anomalous object that could make this happen. Again, this one's up to the GM's discretion.


SCP - 914 "The Clockworks"
Extended 914 Testing log: (http://www.scp-wiki.net/experiment-log-914)
This SCP is a huge device made from countless gears, belts, springs and pulleys that has an input and an output chamber, and five knobs. When an item is put into 914 and one of the knobs pressed, the item will be changed by 914.

While anything 914 outputs will be related to what was put in in some way, shape or form, it isn't always very obvious and GMs should interpret things however they want. It's theorised in the extended testing log that 914 is semi-sapient and is inconsistent in what it gives on purpose, but it generally seems to follow these rules for each of the buttons:
  • Rough: On this setting, the item or creature is usually viciously disassembled. For example, it will break an ingot down into chunks of metal, or a wooden holy symbol into a fragment of wood.
  • Coarse: On this setting, the item or creature is usually very carefully disassembled. For example, putting banknotes in resulted in blank paper and a puddle of ink.
  • 1:1 : On this setting, 914 will usually give something it perceives to be equivalent. Putting one currency in gives the same amount in a different currency, putting one person in gets another completely different person out.
  • Fine: On this setting, things are improved over the base version. This is usually a non-magical (or should I say, non-anomalous) change, but on occasion things have been magical. Putting a corpse through 914 on Fine resulted in a corpse carrying SCP - 008, which is the SCP universe's zombie virus, and putting a pill of SCP-500 through resulted in a new SCP.
  • Very Fine:  On this setting, things will be drastically and magically changed, although whether it's for the better or for worse is pretty random. One time, a perfect duplicate of the Mona Lisa was produced. In another test, a tuna sandwich turned into a piece of bread shaped like tuna, which promptly swam through the air and was lost by the foundation. Once a player puts something through on Very Fine, the weird stuff starts happening.

Making this work in the game: 
914 is a very powerful SCP, and in the Containment Breach video game it is invaluable in helping you survive. There are a few things that a GM should consider before letting players run everything they own through this object on Very Fine and creating a million Vorpal Swords:
  • First of all, this thing is HUGE. It's roughly 18 square meters in size and it weighs several tons. Moving it will be near impossible.
  • Second, while some exceptionally useful objects can be made from this device, lots of harmful ones have been made in the experiments too. The GM should either use the first idea that comes through their mind, or toss a coin on whether a result will be helpful, especially for Very Fine.
  • Third, biological matter results in extremely dangerous tests. In one test, it produced another corpse with the (entirely contained) zombie virus, and in another it created goo that should never come into contact with corpses under any circumstances. The Foundation prohibit running organic matter through 914 and for good reason- don't be afraid to punish the PCs for running one of their henchmen through it.
  • Fourth, some of the logs imply it is a sapient creature. If any of the PCs do anything to annoy it, make sure it interprets what the PCs are trying to get in a way that is as inconvenient as possible.
  • Finally- it never does the same thing twice. This is clarified in the very first test in the extended test logs.


ATOMIC TARRASQUES, OH NO

The Tarrasque is a staple D&D monster. It's D&D fantasy Godzilla, that can withstand horrendous punishment and keep regenerating. It's a common choice of monster for an epic-level D&D campaign. It has also been the subject of that Clay Golem meme, when it was found that the 5e Tarrasque's attacks aren't magical, and therefore it can't harm creatures only hit by magical weapons- as Clay Golems are immune to non-magical attacks. Most GMs for 5e alter the Tarrasque to give it justice for its legendary reputation, as the 5e version lacks any kind of regeneration, ranged attack or attacks that can hurt a Clay Golem.


That being said, some enterprising GMs realise that the Tarrasque's lack of ranged attacks
 aren't really the issue they first seem to be.

It makes sense then, that the dominant race at the time would use the best weapons they could find to take the thing down, and some settings go above and beyond just swinging swords and firing 90kg weights at it when it's 300 meters away.

In AD&D, the Tarrasque regenerates 1hp a round, but depending on your game, that might not be enough. In 5e, several other monsters can regenerate as many as 10hp a round, which works much better if you're playing a system that deals more damage.

Now in GURPS Black Ops, there are stats for nuclear weapons. I'm not really sure why you would need to give damage to something as powerful as a nuclear weapon, but it did give me an idea.

Tarrasques regenerate as long as they live in most editions, and most of the time only a Wish spell can keep it dead. This means that even though a 1 Megaton nuclear bomb does 12d6 x 2,000,000,000 (for a minimum of 24 billion damage), a Tarrasque would survive unless it was wished dead, regenerating 10 lost hit points every six seconds, or 100 hit points every minute.

Assuming a 3.5 average damage total per die on the bomb, it inflicts 84,000,000,000 damage, or 84 billion points of atomic damage provided the Tarrasque was in the 9-mile blast radius. This would easily reduce it to a very low negative HP number, and knock it unconscious.

As it regenerates 10hp a round in our example, it would recover 84 billion damage in 8.4 billion rounds. Which is 840,000,000 minutes. 1.4 million hours. 583,333.3 days.

All in all, a 1 Megaton nuclear bomb knocks a Tarrasque that regenerates 10hp/round for almost 1,600 years. 16,000 if the Tarrasque only regains one hit point a round.

So, my proposed campaign setting for a super-heroic fantasy game: a fantasy post-apocalypse where every 16,000 years, the Tarrasque finally arises from its slumber. Every time, nuclear weapons and/or other extremely destructive weapons are employed against the monster, causing an apocalypse and having everything be destroyed. The Tarrasque then slumbers for another 16,000+ years. For your campaign's endgame, the PCs have to do their best to break the cycle, and save the world.

It's like the Reapers from Mass Effect + Godzilla, actually.