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Blood and Vigilance
Blood and Vigilance is the evolution of the Vigilance superhero RPG and RPGObject’s Blood and … series. You can find out more about RPGObjects and Vigilance Press at end of this page.
Welcome to the Blood and Vigilance GameWyrd preview! As we’ve done many times for past products in our “Blood” line, we here at RPGObjects have taken the time to provide readers of the Wyrd with an exclusive look into one of our upcoming games. This time it’s a return to the past, in a whole new way, as RPGO takes the first game I ever designed, Vigilance, adds a lot of Blood, and updates it to work with all the exciting d20 Modern products, especially other books with the word Blood at the front of their titles.
One thing Blood and Vigilance does to make your life easy is to provide you with numerous campaign models. One of my favorites in playtesting, and my players too, was the “Dark Future” model, where the players are mutants in the far future confined to ghettos by a fearful public. Left to fend for themselves, mutant neighborhoods, called “Containment Zones”, are ruled by ruthless mutant gangleaders, while among the “normals”, Hounds, mutants trained from birth, hunt down their fellows, depositing them in the ghettos.
One such gangleader is Roughshod, a villain who has the potential to be a hero. How the heroes deal with him will make all the difference.
Roughshod 5th Level (Tough 3/Gangster 2): CR 5; HD: 3d10, 2d8+33 (+30 Con, +3 Toughness); HP 63; Massive Damage 22; AP 7; Init +1; Spd 30 ft.; Defense 16, Touch 16, Flat-Footed 15 (+2 Armor, +3 Class, +1 Dexterity); BAB +3 (+4 melee +4 ranged); Attack; SA Electricity Resistance, Damage Resistance 1, Reciprocity +1; AL Whisper, The Wraiths; Occupation Criminal: Move Silently, Gamble; Origin Mutant: Invisibility; Wealth +9; SV Fort +11 Ref +6 Will +1; Str 13 Dex 12 Con 22 Int 11 Wis 10 Cha 18.
Skills: Knowledge (streetwise) +6, Intimidate +12, Move Silently +7, Diplomacy +8
Feats: Simple Weapon proficiency (from class), Brawl (from occupation), Personal Firearms Proficiency, Stealthy, Toughness (from class), Henchmen (the Wraiths), Lair (from class)
Superhuman Constitution +6
Absorption- energy +6
General Stunts: +4 to Reflex saving throws
Superhuman Charisma +4
Disadvantages: Prejudice (DSR 2), Enemy: Mutant Containment Authority (DSR 2), Obsession: Protect mutants/Wipe out humanity/Rule mutants
Background: Roughshod was born Reginald Stamp to human parents, and his mutation of invisibility manifested almost at birth. Horrified parents, trying desperately to find a son gone from his crib, were even more horrified when they realized he had been there all along. A frantic call to the police brought the Hounds, and a forcible relocation of the boy to the Atlanta Containment Zone.
In the Atlanta Containment Zone, the boy was a constant target for bullying and teasing, as his power would come and go, leaving an empty classroom seat, and snickers and whispers. When Reginald reached puberty, however, things began to change for the boy. At a time when most mutants were just struggling with first manifestations of powers, Reginald learned to fully master a wide range of abilities, including the ability to absorb energy (his invisibility works on the same principle, draining the ambient light energy away). He also became very difficult to wound, and filled with a boundless energy brought about by a metabolism that was literally solar powered. Suddenly the bullied became the bully.
Around this time Reginald caught the attention of the Wraiths, one of the largest mutant gangs in the ACZ, which recruited mutants with stealth abilities for petty crime and drug running (ever tried to track down an invisible drug smuggler?). The leader of the gang had been the worst of the bullies who beat Reginald only a year ago, but who now sought to use the boy’s talents. When the gang’s leader fell in front of a passing train, no one asked any questions. Reginald was hailed (after a brief power struggle) the new head of the Wraiths.
But a restless feeling drew a newly successful Reginald out of the ACZ, and back into the human quarter, where his power allowed him to go undetected, evading the Hounds, the constant police patrols, and the curfews. Looking in on his parents, he was stunned to see they had another child. And like him, she was a mutant, with similar powers. Only this time there had been no call to the authorities. The girl had been taught never to reveal her abilities, and was beaten any time she “slipped” and winked out. Reginald slit their throats, and took his new ward back with him to the ACZ, to live in the protective arms of his growing power and influence.
Reginald already had ambitions to rule the ACZ. But now he had a new agenda as well. The humans needed to go. They had proven themselves to be the Neanderthals of the 21st century.
Quote: “Don’t get on my bad side. You never know when I might be listening, or standing right behind you, so watch what you say. People are so vulnerable when they’re asleep, and you never know when I might be standing right by your bed watching you nod off.”
Role: Roughshod is the sympathetic villain. For heroes in the ACZ, he would be regarded as a peer, perhaps even a friend, helping on missions against the Hounds, and often doing good deeds to make life easier on the mutants. However, he has plans for a bloody takeover of the ACZ, and then a full-scale war with humanity. His younger sister, Whisper, does not share these feelings, despite her bad experiences at the hands of humanity, and seeks to turn Reginald away from his darker tendencies. PCs might help in this, might become his enemies, or might even seek to help him in his plans. Having qualified, Reginald’s next level will be in the Mastermind advanced class. GMs should keep this in mind, and allow the PCs to witness his rise to power, or perhaps his reformation (he could just as easily end up in the Mentor class- although it will take him an extra level to get there).
Adventure Hooks: “Machiavellian Methods”: A mutant hero has set up a “summit” with the governor of Georgia to attempt to earn more rights for mutants and ease tensions between the two groups. Roughshod has allied with the White Knights (an anti-mutant group) and together they will kill the leaders, keeping tensions between the two groups high. Enough evidence will be left to convince humans that mutants were responsible, and to convince mutants that the Knights are to blame.
And Roughshod’s sister, the young heroine, and all around vivacious ball of fire Whisper.
Whisper 2nd Level Mutant (Fast Hero 2): CR 2; HD 2d8 -2; HP 12; Massive Damage 8; AP 6; Init; Spd 30 ft.; Defense 16, Touch 16, Flat-Footed 14 (+4 Class, +2 Dexterity); BAB +1 (-1 melee +3 ranged); Attack 2d6 Blast ranged; SA Evasion; AL Roughshod, Mutant Harmony; Occupation Criminal: Sleight of Hand, Disable Device; Origin Mutant: Invisibility; Wealth +1; SV Fort -1 Ref +4 Will +0; Str 7 Dex 15 Con 8 Int 12 Wis 10 Cha 11.
Skills: Balance +5, Move Silently +5, Sleight of Hand +6, Disable Device +5, Escape Artist +5, Knowledge (streetwise) +5
Feats: Simple Weapon proficiency (from class), Dodge, Mobility, Point Blank Shot (from class)
Control Light +5
Energy Blast +4
Enhanced Senses +5
Disadvantages: Prejudice (DSR 2), Age: 14 (DSR 3)
Background: In one way or another Whisper, born Rachel Stamp, has been hiding her whole life. As a child she was always nosing into places, sneaking out to enjoy the night. Her seemingly loving parents tolerated her precociousness, though she noticed each time they found her, they seemed exceedingly relieved. When she began disappearing, she was beaten, and told to hide what she was or go to the worst place imaginable: the Containment Zone.
Then her brother rescued her, and she found that life in the ACZ wasn’t so bad. She enjoyed being with the Wraiths, going places she’s not supposed to, the excitement of using her powers. However, she sees the growing darkness in her brother, and seeks to turn him toward a less violent path.
Quote: “Hey, look what I found! Pretty, huh?”
Role: Rachel is the budding hero. Still a teenager first and foremost, she is already accomplished with her powers, and enjoys using them to help others, especially mutants. As a child, however, she is also prone to mischief. She and her brother are engaged in a personality struggle of sorts, and it remains to be seen (and influenced by the actions of the PCs) whether he draws her into the darkness, as a lieutenant in his war on humanity, or whether she turns him into the hero he has the potential to be.
Adventure Hooks: In a variation of “Family Affair”, Whisper could be the kidnapped mutant, and Roughshod could come to the PCs for assistance. This is especially effective if Roughshod is established as an adversary of the PCs.
Having gotten a look at two characters, let’s take a brief look at what makes them tick. Here’s the mutant origin, the source of any heroes’ power.
Mutants. The children of the atom they call you. The racists call you a “jinx” and the jinxes call you an Uncle Tom. For whatever reason you have been blessed (cursed?) with powers that appeared before you were old enough to handle them, and have marked you as different for the rest of your life. What you do with those powers is up to you.
Enhanced Abilities: +2 to one ability of your choice
Power Points: 16 at first level, 3 per level thereafter.
Power Stunts: When your powers first appear, they seem wild and hard to control. As a result, you do not get a power stunt at first level. However, at 3rd level and beyond you gain a power stunt normally.
Point of Origin: Mutants come in all shapes and sizes. Indeed, if the scientific experiment is the defining origin of the silver age of comics, it could be argued that the mutant is the defining origin of the modern age of comics. You may select one power and add it to your permanent class powers list.
Disadvantages: You must take the Prejudice disadvantage (DSR 2) at first level. Your prejudice disadvantage may never be removed or reduced below DSR 2.
You are (or were) a street-level member of a criminal organization. You don’t understand big deals in quiet casino back rooms, but you do understand the simple, brutal laws of the street: if they bring a knife you bring a gun; if they put one of your boys in the hospital you put one of theirs in the morgue. And above all else: keep your mouth shut. Handle things by the law of the street. Don’t get the authorities involved. Don’t squeal. Handle your own business.
And you no doubt noticed a new class in Roughshod’s statblock, so let’s have a look at the Gangster advanced class, one of nine new advanced classes you’ll find in Blood and Vigilance.
To qualify to become a Gangster, a character must fulfill the following criteria.
Skills: Intimidate 6 Ranks, Knowledge (streetwise) 6 Ranks.
The following information pertains to the Gangster advanced class.
Hit Die: 1d8.
Action Points: 6+ ½ character level, rounded down every time the character attains a new level in this class.
Class Skills: Bluff, Diplomacy, Disable Device, Drive, Forgery, Gamble, Gather Information, Intimidate, Knowledge (current events, popular culture, streetwise, tactics), Listen, Sense Motive, Spot.
Skill Points per Level: 3 + Int Modifier.
Class Powers: Armor, Claws, Danger Sense, Ensnaring Attack, Invisibility, Mimic, Stunning Attack, Superhuman Charisma, Superhuman Constitution.
|Fort Save||Ref Save||Will Save||Special||Defense Bonus||Reputation Bonus|
The following features pertain to the Gangster advanced class.
The Gangster has three talent trees: Reciprocity, Undue Influence, and Omerta. Reciprocity focuses on getting even, Undue Influence focuses on gaining control over others through illicit means, and Omerta focuses on the fine art of gang protocol. You may select a talent at 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 9th levels. Some trees have a set order that must be followed, while others provide a list to choose from. As long as you qualify, you may freely select from any and all talent trees. No talent can be selected more than once unless expressly indicated.
Reciprocity Talent Tree
One of the core philosophies of gang culture, the ultimate Darwinian expression of quid pro quo is revenge. Anyone who wrongs you is to be dealt with accordingly. To do otherwise makes you look weak and invites others to take advantage of that weakness. This ability is not about getting ahead; it’s about compensation in kind. In other words, if someone owes you money, you don’t get this bonus until you kill him. You get the bonus until he pays you back. If someone kills your brother, you get the bonus until you kill his brother (or another similar relative). The bonuses in this talent tree are cumulative, so that with Reciprocity 4, you have a +4 bonus to the attack and skill rolls, in addition to any other feats, or abilities that add to the rolls.
Reciprocity 1: +1 bonus to Attack, Gather Information, Intimidate, and Knowledge (streetwise).
Reciprocity 2: +1 bonus to Attack, Gather Information, Intimidate, and Knowledge (streetwise). Prerequisite: Reciprocity.
Reciprocity 3: +1 bonus to Attack, Gather Information, Intimidate, and Knowledge (streetwise). Prerequisite: Reciprocity 2.
Reciprocity 4: +1 bonus to Attack, Gather Information, Intimidate, and Knowledge (streetwise). Prerequisite: Reciprocity 3.
Undue Influence Talent Tree
Humans are flawed, filled with weaknesses that can be exploited by those with the will to take advantage of them. In the words of a famous mobster, “sadness accrues”, and here in the imperfect world of man it’s all about taking advantage of that sadness and turning it to your benefit. Undue Influence provides you with a contact, but one gained under duress. To gain a contact you must make a Diplomacy check coupled with a Wealth check (for a bribe), a Gather Information check (to discover something potentially damaging or embarrassing about the contact), an Intimidate check (to threaten the contact or the contact’s loved ones), or a Wealth check (for criminal or street contacts only- to simply put a target on the payroll). The DC of each check is listed below.
Exerting undue influence on a target always makes that target regard you with hostility, and the target will take steps to harm you, or see that harm comes to you. A law-abiding target will contact the authorities, raising any law-enforcement Enemy disadvantage by one each time this is attempted and fails (characters without the Enemy disadvantage will gain one for the FBI or other suitable organization). Street and criminal characters will seek more direct means of revenge.
You may have a maximum number of contacts (of any level) equal to your Charisma modifier with this ability. You must release a contact before you may attempt to gain a new one if you are at your limit. Your talent simply determines the highest level contact you are allowed, not how many.
Low Level Contact: DC 15, or wealth check of 10 for a street contact.
Medium Level Contact: DC 20, or wealth check of 15 for a street contact. Prerequisite: Low Level Contact.
High Level Contact: DC 25, or wealth check of 20 for a street contact. Prerequisite: Medium Level Contact.
Omerta Talent Tree
Omerta is the Sicilian code of silence used by the Mafia. It is a form of “honor among thieves”. Don’t go outside the family, especially not to the police. Let the family solve its own problems. And don’t ever “squeal” under any circumstances. For the purposes of this profession, Omerta represents the character rising through the ranks of a criminal organization.
Family Business: If you have the Henchmen feat, you add your Gangster level to your leadership twice to determine your leadership score. These followers are members of your gang or “family”, and followers and sidekicks above 4th level may be members of the gangster advanced class if you so desire.
Big Time: You either gain the Renown or Windfall feat each time you select this ability.
Vendetta: By pronouncing vendetta, you name someone as an enemy of your entire criminal organization. Anyone with the Reciprocity talent who is a part of the criminal organization you serve will gain an additional +2 to attack and skill checks against the target of this vendetta until the talent itself is satisfied (see the Reciprocity talent for more information). Prerequisite: Family Business
At the levels indicated you may select a bonus feat from the following list: Combat Martial Arts, Conviction, Deceptive, Drive-By Attack, Enemy, Frightful Presence, Henchmen, Heroic Surge, Home Turf, Improved Brawl, Improved Feint, Information Network, Lair, Low Profile, Sidekick, Streetfighting, Tactician, Teamwork. You must meet the prerequisites for any feat selected as a bonus feat.
And finally, some of the key powers to those characters. Notice the new way powers work in Vigilance, with stunts, feats, and power points.
Rather than take damage from ranged attacks, your body’s superhuman metabolism simply absorbs some of it and allows it to harmlessly dissipate over time.
Energy Absorption (Permanent; Free; Personal; Exclusive): When you are struck by a ranged energy attack, if you succeed at your normal Reflex saving throw, you reduce the base damage by one die per 2 Power Points in absorption. You then take ½ of the damage from the remaining dice. If you fail your normal saving throw, you reduce the damage by one die per 4 Power Points in absorption, then take full damage of the dice that remain as per normal. Absorbed damage dice are dissipated harmlessly.
For example, if you had 6 Power Points in absorption and were struck by a 6-die blast and made your saving throw, you would remove 3 dice of damage (one for each 2 points in absorption). The attacker would then roll three dice of damage, and you would take ½ that amount of damage. If you failed your saving throw, you would remove 1 die of damage (one for each 4 full power points in absorption). The attacker would then roll 5 dice of damage, and you would subtract the full amount from your hit points normally.
Energy Absorption, Melee (Permanent; Free; Personal; Exclusive): When you are struck by an energy melee attack, you may make a Reflex saving throw (DC equal to the modified attack roll of the person attacking you) to reduce the damage by 1 point for each 2 Power Points invested in this power. If you fail this saving throw, you suffer full damage from the attack.
Physical Absorption (Permanent; Free; Personal; Exclusive): When you are struck by a ranged physical attack, if you succeed at your normal Fortitude saving throw, you reduce the base damage by one die per 2 Power Points in absorption. You then take ½ of the damage from the remaining dice. If you fail your normal saving throw, you reduce the damage by one die per 4 Power Points in absorption, then take full damage of the dice that remain as per normal. Absorbed damage dice are dissipated harmlessly. See above for an example of this power in action.
Physical Absorption, Melee (Permanent; Free; Personal; Exclusive): When you are struck by a physical melee attack, you may make a Fortitude saving throw (DC equal to the modified attack roll of the person attacking you) to reduce the damage by 1 point for each 2 Power Points invested in this power. If you fail this saving throw, you suffer full damage from the attack.
+2 to absorption saving throws
You may store absorbed energy for a short period of time and use this energy to perform a blast attack.
Prerequisite: 12 power points in Absorption, 1 Power Stunt for +2 saving throws.
Effect: Instead of absorbed dice dissipating harmlessly, they are stored, and may be used to power a blast of that number of dice. The maximum amount of dice you may store is equal to one die per 2 Power Points in absorption, and these dice may be stored for one minute (10 rounds) per 4 Power Points before they dissipate normally. However, as long as your absorption is “maxed out”, you may not use your absorption power for anything else (such as reducing damage).
For example, if you had 10 power points in absorption, you could use your absorption to reduce successive energy attacks by up to 5 dice. At which point, you would no longer be able to reduce damage from energy attacks until you had released the pent up energy stored in your internal batteries (most likely by nailing the bastard shooting at you with a 5-die attack), or by waiting two and a half minutes.
Special: If you have power points invested in both Physical and Energy Absorption (they are exclusive powers), you may take this feat twice, applying it to each type of absorption power, assuming you took power stunts in each one. Otherwise you may only select this feat once.
Whatever you absorb makes you stronger… or faster… or hardier…
Prerequisite: 12 power points Melee Absorption, 2 Power Stunts for +4 saving throws.
Effect: Instead of absorbed melee damage dissipating harmlessly, you may add it to a physical ability of your choice (chosen when this feat is taken). Damage converts to ability increases at a 4:1 ratio (so each four points of damage absorbed through melee absorption will add +1 to the stat in question. This ability increase lasts for one minute (10 rounds) per 4 Power Points before dissipating at the rate of 1 ability point per round until your ability returns to normal.
Special: You may take this feat more than once. Each time you select this feat it applies to a different ability. When you absorb damage, you must decide which ability to increase (if you have this feat more than once you don’t get double the bonus). You may not select this feat for both energy and physical melee absorption for the same ability.
You have the ability to make yourself disappear.
Invisibility (Concentration; Action; Personal; General) You become invisible to most forms of detection, and can only be seen by characters that have more power points in enhanced vision than you have power points in invisibility, or by Sonar or psychic detection. An attack ends this effect and it must be reactivated on the next round.
Improved Invisibility (Power Level; Action; Personal; General): You can remain invisible and fight, with a duration of one round per power point. This power still has no effect on characters that have more points in enhanced vision than you have points in invisibility, or Sonar, or psychic detection.
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