Friday, September 30, 2016

Kragor the Merc: Blood & Reunion

I was backing away from the fight, arms held high but a grenade at the ready. Ed was running back to lend a helping hand to Lucas. Ok, it could be worse. Back off now, drive away to give ourselves a hundred meters distance or so and we could end this in our favor.

It was a good plan until the sound of automated fire broke the silence. It was still a long way to cover behind the jeep, but didn't seem to be any other options, so I threw the grenade and ran for it. Judging from the screams I hit something. Unfortunately something also hit me as I felt a staggering pain in the knee. Not the fucking knee! Memories from that old mercenary camp immediately came back but I supressed them and threw myself to the ground. The heavy fire from the assault gun ended and only a few stray shots crossed over the battlefield. I popped a mort and with the pain dying away asked who was alive and who wasn't. Everyone but Juron called in. Angeline asked what we should do. Fuck it if I knew. Instead of a plan we now had a mess... at least it seemed as if most of the surviving settlers had retreated into the power plant, with the exception of someone firing fromt he nearby woods. Lucas took care of that. I dragged myself into the jeep where I found Juron collapsed next to the assault gun.

Checking in it seemed Angeline was the only one unharmed. Lucas seemed to be ok while Juron was definitely out of it. Ed turned up and healed us, though it seemed to drain him a little too much. Juron remained unconscious. I shouted towards the power plant that they had 1 hour to pack up and leave. I wouldn't go through this ordeal without getting paid.

Within the hour we saw the settlers get out and ditch. Yeah, they had a hard winter coming. More so because of stupid leadership. But with them gone we would be able to get to work, at least after some rest. We took turns keeping watch as we rested and tended our wounds throughout the night. As morning came it didn't feel good but it did seem as if we were going to live. Juron was in a pretty rough shape but there was nothing else we could do and he was a stubborn fellow so I thought the odds were on his side. We started doing what we could with placing the perimeter bots and rolling out the fence. As the day past it was clear we couldn't finish the latter but we did what we could.

At last the corps showed up. I should probably have been expecting them to be smug about the fences not being done but I had been shot several times - including the fucking knee - and was in no such mood. For a moment I thought about burying the bastard out in the fields but hey, money first. Erza had come with the column so it was a relief to hand over command. It had felt good for a while but with this kind of shit going on I'd rather take a break.

Soon the jeep was heading back to town.

It felt like another life, arriving back at the city and getting patched up by Rosina. A few hours later I found myself back at base, at the firing range emptying the clip in my auto shotgun. I took my time as I needed to clear my head. What had gone wrong? I couldn't put my finger on it. We should have cut through those farmers like a hot knife through butter. The brain switched to thinking about food for awhile. Well, we had survived what would have killed most others. That counted for something; enough for me to find reason to leave the firing range and join the others for some beer and food. Well, some of the others. Ed where still at medbay for observation and Juron was undergoing surgery. As Erza was back we made another round sharing our stories. It felt even more ridiculous this time, but at least it was done.

Our day off was spent job hunting. Discussing the matter Juron - now back from surgery - let pop that he somehow had learned about the mysterious assailant who claimed Lucas' arm a few weeks back. While the issue of revenge was raised at least me and Erza agreed we also wanted some money out of it. It was something to think - not act - upon for now. Despite some reluctance from Angeline me and Erza decided to head out to talk to the clans to see if there was any well-paid work to be had. This took us far into the blocks.

We met our contact "Joline" at a top floor apartment hidden away from spying eyes. We were offered a mission to blow up a bridge in the tech district, but at 7k it seemed both dangerous and complicated so it was back to the office. After scanning the board we finally settled for a perimeter patrol for Terra Petrolium.

For all my sins it turned out we'd have to do the whole job on foot. Curses didn't carry my pack so in the end it was Juron who did. I swore an oath on that spot that I'd be chasing Lucas on his stupid morning jog until this would never happen again. We had some wildlife encounters but nothing serious. There were some sensors which we were to check on; Juron did most of that job. In the end we got back, got paid and it felt like being back on track.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Damage Calculator

For your convenience the generator app has been enhanced with a Damage Calculator. You'll find it along with other links in the resource bar on this page!

For the basic math, simply select damage type and enter the amount of damage. Click "calculate" (or press enter) and you get the resulting trauma and pain as well as a short description containing hit location.

Now if you want to muck about you can also specify a hit location and, if wanted, a precise location as well. Further, select the armor the target is wearing (selecting the right Age first, of course) to have damage reduction calculated in one go.

Well that's about it. Oh, and you should also check out the persona option on the random names page! Sure, the results can be improved - but they also will be, especially if there is some feedback!

Feel free to comment (and like) at our Facebook page

Direct link to the generator:

Kragor the Merc: Water and Electricity

My last mission had got me thinking about serious shit. Making a name for myself... well it sounded silly in one way, but in another I felt it was the right thing. Its not too difficult to get famous - or infamous - in this wrecked city, but that's not what I'm thinking about. Making a name... its all about who you're making a name for, isn't it? I don't know that yet, but I'm working on it.

What I do know is that I won't get anywhere without the Predators. We're bundled together, so I'd just better turn it the right way with Erza still being out of town. But dammit, I don't know how to make these folks walk in the same direction; it seems everyone has secrets. I guess I'd have to share my story... it's what they do on the virex anyway and hopefully it works. Particularly I need to wrap my pretty head around that medic of ours - there is clearly something fishy going on there.

I got back a bit earlier than the others, so I started working on this plan. The Demon's Head were also back, but thankfully a bit fatigued from their Dukkha mission so didn't transform into their usual waste of breath. The only place I could think of to have a heart-to-heart talk with the others were the Mint. Standard place for some peace and quiet and they did have decent beer...

As the others got back they looked tired - but not too tired. I managed to get them all accompanying me for "a drink". Then I spilled my story. It was a funny feeling actually; can't recon that I recollected it all at once like that before. Oh, sure, Keria would have heard one too many of my stories but I was, well, about 20 when I met her. Things have happened since, believe it or not. But the point is it didn't feel so strange as I though it would. It was an interesting life, not a bad story at all. And it also got the others talking, which was the point of it.
Lucas was out first and, frankly, it was military-this, military-that. Nothing unexpected, though I think he said something about the Academy and magic parents? Regardless I put my money on watching Ed and Juron to see if they were listening in or preparing their own little speeches. Juron seemed a bit annoyed at the whole situation - would have to be careful there, as I don't want him against me. Ed did exactly what I expected and seemed to be planning something in his head. Well, as Lucas finished it was his turn.
Surprisingly I found Ed didn't come from the bottom ladder of society, but rather had thrown himself in that direction. Also his questionable medical accomplishments got explained as he declared himself a self-taught streetmage, with a hint of field medic expertise picked up during his last years in the Fringe. I don't trust magic so got Ed to explain what he actually could do with it, so hopefully I have some damn insight into how to use his skills in the field.
Juron was up next and as expected he was a bit off in his talk. Didn't really learn much apart from that the guy had apparently walked half-way across the Fringe by now in search of... well fuck me if I knew. Sounded like some ritual for reaching adulthood or the like. Time will tell I wager.
Last out was Angeline. Seems she had a tough upbringing and only a band of mercs prevented her from being raped by gangers at age 13. The damn girl had stuck to the trade every since, which is damn impressive. Behind that whimsy huggie talk there is a brain that gets things done. She's earned my respect.

Well, bonding time was over so we headed back to base. We did another practice run with Siri on the following day and ran some errands. Those damn drugs seems to keep disappearing...
One thing we didn't have to do was to find ourselves a new job - apparently GERO wanted our services again. Not sure if that means we're doing well or are simply viewed as expendables, but they do pay good.

The mission turned out to be to recover an old hydro power plant far out into the bush. It was a very long drive to pick up some components and then we had orders to fence in and secure the area. We got ensured that no other corps would be contesting the area so primary concerns were bandits. We headed out in a jeep and a truck.

As it was getting colder the roads weren't as wet as they've been recent weeks so the driving was ok. I felt strangely alert all the way without getting fatigued - I guess it was the effects of that biomod. That shit was good.
We reached the first base and picked up our cargo with no incidents and then continued forth. It was a long, uneventful drive until suddenly we spotted a large tree across the road - accompanied by a camouflaged vehicle stationed at the side of the road. Bandit ambush.
As it usually turns out, us spotting their position turned the tables completely. Lucas had started putting bandits down before they knew what was happening and with our vehicles parked a bit further back me and Juron headed out to face them. They where trying to charge in with their jeep so I lobbed a fire grenade into the driver seat. That unfortunately got them steering towards us; Juron got shot and was about to get run over as I managed to throw him to the side. The bandits crashed in the woodland behind us and the others took down the survivors. For my part I felt alive - so fucking alive. Stand in our way and you'd find your corpse burning by the side of the road. It was like a confirmation that my thoughts on life and everything was right - things would go my way.

We collected some of the bandits' supplies - which included an assault gun - and moved the large tree out of the way then we continued. The rest of the drive was uneventful, but as we reached an open area surrounding the hydro plant we were heading towards we noticed fields and a collection of tents. Of course there were settlers here. A dozen or so had made their way on to the road, blocking our path. All seemed to have guns. Well, we could solve this. The last thing I wanted was some moral shit-talk but it didn't have to turn into a shoot-out either. Yes, I may be a cynical bastard but if these people were to die today I'd damn well make it their own decision. So I walked over.
The leader turned out to be an orc woman, which was bad. Like Erza they like to be in charge. I tried to explain the situation to them but they were stubborn as hell; seems as a character description of every farmer I've ever met. I went back to the others to discuss matters. Ed explained that the leader appeared to be a streetmage and were as we spoke casting the same type of protection spell he himself used. I knew nothing about mages so I readily handed negotiations over to him - hopefully he knew how such people worked and he had pleaded for a chance of negotiating for several weeks.

We walked back and resumed our talks, while we noticed half of the thugs had moved away into the nearby woods. Ed tried to push the orc into getting the situation while I tried to find a legal way to have GERO put up shop without getting into trouble with these people. However, they had resented society to such a degree we couldn't find any common ground. And Ed and the orc really didn't get along and so suddenly, after yelling at each other, she hit Ed in the chest with some sort of lightning. I let my shotgun blaze and took out two of the others while I got a scratch in return. I had expected to hear the heavy thud of the assault gun by now, but instead there were an explosion further back and we continued to exchange fire just a few meters from each other. The orc screamed in orcish about sparing those that ran while killing the rest, then she hit me with a lightning bolt which hurt like hell. I the fraction of a second someone had kicked my leg out of the way and another put a gun to my head. Things were going wrong, but I already had a new plan. We only needed a bit of breathing space and she had just provided it for us. I picked up one of my grenades as I gave the order to retreat, loud and clear. Orcs were generally hard on their principles so I hoped this would mean she let us go. Then we could regroup, manage our wounds and well, shoot these people dead from a distance. I just hoped that I would be able to stand for a few more hours. Ed turned out and gave me a pat on the back and the pain almost went away; magic is weird. Again I got the feeling that nothing would be stopping us; we might look beaten now but just wait and see...

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Kragor the Merc: Lost and Found

Damn forest. Damn sinkholes. Suddenly the ground disappeared and everything went dark... I don't know what part I landed on, but it wasn't a soft landing. All voices seemed distant; had the feeling that I've fallen into water, but it was all dry leaves around... Truth be told I don't remember much until I looked into the headlight of a jeep which winched us out.

On the way back home there was talk about ruins and spiders but I couldn't make heads or tails of it. Apparently I had a concussion. I hadn't felt so useless since Sora managed to shoot me in the leg - and that was ages ago. I healed up pretty well that time, but this time I don't know. Curse getting older!

Rosina did the best she could and I sleep off what was left the following day. We sold the poison we collected but Erza still wasn't back and it was getting time for a new job. Even the money didn't really seem to matter. I needed time to think...

Partly blaming the concussion, which in truth wasn't so bad anymore, I stated I'd do a solo job. Something nice and easy. A good thing with rarely questioning others is that they rarely question you, so I took a standard gig for Grootgrond and headed out. It was first when I was packing my stuff I found the biomod I bought from Rosina a few days ago. Was it worth it? What difference would it make? I let it stay in my stash.

The job was an escort - food and other supplies for Iron Hill. There were five other mercs on the job; had worked with two of them before prior to the Apex Predators entering the scene; they were known as Rus and Keg (yes he drinks. A lot). The other's I'd seen around. Nothing special, but at least you got what you expected. I took the rear post in our three truck caravan. One of the mercs made some comment about it was where my face belonged so I accidentally discharged my shotgun at the ground next to his foot. He shut up for the rest of the trip.

As we were moving out it dawned on me I hadn't really thought about which direction I was heading since me and Keria survived those double-crossing bitches in the forest. That was 18 years ago - hard to imagine. After that, things had just happened after each other - it had been an easy ride to just tag along. But what did I really have to show for those years? The credits are gone, that's for sure... a few more scars but it's not like anyone would notice outside of the face. A few contacts for sure, but Keria doesn't like me more than she has too, Zima doesn't bring as many jobs as he used to while Kronaug is about as useful as he's ever been. There is of course young Mr Blackbourne but haven't heard from him in a while. The more I thought about it the more it felt like the world was trying to give me a hint. "You're old, you damn fool. Sell your stuff and take a job as a guide for some new team who don't know half a thing about the Fringe. Make enough money and leave this shithole behind." It was tempting and this made me pissed off. Yeah, right, like you'd have any of that money more than a week. But what the fuck else could I do?

Eventually we reached Iron Hill, just at the break of dawn. It was a sorrow sight. Other mercs were handling security and while money seemed to go into new fences the workers didn't seem to get much of it. This is what the Fringe do to you: it gives you credits, but never enough. You work your whole damn life but still you're somehow always short on credits.

We off-loaded and turned the trucks around, accepting a second cargo going back to the city. The drive continued. So what was it then? Well, fuck it, I thought. No one knows the future - well maybe some half-crazed mage staring into some pond somewhere. But other than that. Something my mother had said to me on a bloody night in a very different life... "We prove ourselves to the gods so they know where to place us when we return after death. Until then we fight on". Never believed in any damn gods and I'm pretty sure death is quite final for anyone but the super-rich. But you never know... There was a biomod in my stash back at base. It was a start. Well, curse all the gods and the world with them! I am Kragor and I will go down in a fury of bullets. The Fringe may take everything, but I'll give it a name to remember...

Core Rule Update: Conditions & Wards

You'll now find an updated Core Rule book available for download.

What is new:

Added conditions:
  • Altered Metabolism
  • Deep Sleep
  • Insomnia
Magical Wards:
- Added a short section on the creation (and maintenance) of magical wards.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Kragor the Merc: Apex Predators

The mission was done; the camp had been cleaned, though the odd shot from Juron could still be heard through the nightly mists of poison gas. As it was over the damn pain started to creep up on me - all I wanted to was to get back to town and get it sorted out. Unfortunately Silence let know it was 8h until our relieve would arrive. Ed took one look at the wound and said I shouldn't wait... well, he's the medic. But as always, field operations are never easy. Don't know what he actually did apart from cut me up and then put a bandage on it all so for the rest of the wait I had Angeline pile up a bunch of mattresses for a confy seat and I took guard duty. It was one of the longest waits in my damn life - and that's saying a lot.

After the relief force arrived and gave us a pat on the back (figuratively of course - I would have shot anyone who tried that on me at this point) we headed back home. Tried to ease the pain with some mort but the body said no to that, so fuck it. When we finally hit town and some better roads at last it felt like I could think again. Perfect timing for Erza to declare she had to go help her brother - who had managed to get himself into trouble. Is it something all orc women do, rush to the rescue like that? Didn't want to dwell on that thought though... and I didn't have to. In the next sentence Erza gave me command until her return. Oh, lovely day.

Silence dumped the gang off at Freelance and me at the medbay. Rosina seemed to take one look at the wound and started cursing, which can't have been good. There was also an inquiry of the sort "didn't you have a medic with you?" which started to raise an interesting question. It was sleepy time and surgery for me soon after though, so it would have to wait.

It was later that day when I crawled myself back to base. Ok, I walked but I felt like crawling. Had taken the bullet Rosina removed with me - as a souvenir for Ed to give him something to think about. He didn't get time for that though as it was off to collect our money and as it was the first big job we'd done we spent some time talking about a team name. After all, we could be earning a reputation here. It landed on Apex Predators. I can't really recall who came up with the idea, but as far as names go I can live with that one. At least it means something.

The clans wanted to do business at a construction site - a bit cliché but as long as I get my share... They seemed fairly impressed about our work at the camp so there might be more business coming our way - but then they also suggested we'd let them know if we were running escort business to avoid any trouble. I'll leave such fine nuances to Erza to decide about (and her response I dare say I can figure out on my own).

Back att Freelance it was posting the money (taking us past the Demon's Head and off the Dukkha job) and then to get some sleep. Unfortunately Demon's Head ladies Jiang-Pfeng and Sandrah appeared to be man-hunting for the night and with the rest of the Demon's Head out somewhere it was Juron and Ed who got the attention. Not that they seemed to want it, though Juron certainly tried to tell Sandrah off in the wrong way. Jiang had some smoking stuff going on - so it was rebreather on just to be on the safe side. I trust that poisonous bitch even less with a chem than I'd trust Ed in a negotiation these days. Fortunately it all calmed down eventually but yeah, its easy to remember I do this for the credits and not the social encounters.

The following day it was time for more work. The Demon's Head were less than pleased to see they got the Dukkha gig after all, which rendered some satisfaction. I however had my eyes set on Ed's personal files to try to get to the bottom of that mystery-man before we entered negotiations. Didn't have time to read much though.

We took a job for Terra Petroleum, which was a perimeter patrol. I was less than pleased to find we'd have to treck part of the route on foot - the fucking reason I hate Dukkha so much. I'd readily admit I wasn't the best country-trekker even 20 years ago and it hasn't improved over the years... Well, no pain no gain. At least it would take us into territory were we might find some lizards to make us some extra money. Off we went.

About 40h later we had covered most of the route with a slight delay, cutting into our sleep, but Juron and Lucas had still managed to slay a lizard and extract some venom and we were moving out on time. It all looked good, apart from the fact that I had probably been taking one too many wakers to stay alert on this job. But this was the last push - I only had to keep going...