"Normal" Player Characters?

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Ghambit Ghambit's picture
"Normal" Player Characters?

I want to start a campaign wherein the players have no knowledge of anything except their home habitat/world. So they'd be AF podborns in accelerated bodies I guess, completely ignorant of the horrors outside their homes. Or perhaps futuras, AI's, or uplifts. Not sure.

Anyways, are there any tweaks out there that'll allow me to use "normal" characters? These normal PC's would then slowly grasp the game as the campaign wears on, allowing it to shape their characters a bit more dynamically through gameplay. Classic heroic farmboy approach I guess. Make everyone a basic human with essentially nothing special, then allow them to tweak as they go.

It just seems like the corebook really tries to railroad you into fully fleshed out 'sentinels.' I'd rather find a way to ease my players into that if possible. Would've been nice to see a vanilla concept in there reflecting this choice with a very simplified generation process.

Tyrnis Tyrnis's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

Only knowing about their home habitat or world? That's a highly _abnormal_ character in the Eclipse Phase world. They'd likely have to be from an isolationist, bioconservative habitat. At the very least, isolationist is a must, since access to the mesh would normally allow them to know significantly more about the outside world.

Now, if you want normal characters for EP world, that's easy enough to do: just drop the overall CP total down by a couple of hundred and limit the types of morphs and the amount of implants that are available at chargen.

Ghambit Ghambit's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

They'd only know about their own habitat because they'd be detached from the mesh initially in yes, an isolationist type colony or maybe just an overprotective enclave/family. The protagonist would need them to BECOME informed to defend their way of life previously (likely a happy one).

So the 1st few sessions would be spent integrating with the mesh, learning the 'verse, combat, and perhaps spending those remaining CP whilst they decide on a morph perhaps (after I kill them).

I just really want to ease the players into the game rather than handing them an entire transhuman civilization in the 1st sitting. It'd be no implants, the original morph (if at all), and no real skills aside from a general desire to do a particular thing.

The 1st session is then spent "taking the red pill" so to speak.
So I guess I'll just have to subtract CP to an acceptable level for a vanilla character... then figure out gamebalance. :(

OldSchoolGM OldSchoolGM's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

Have you thought about starting them as infomorphs who were in cold storage for the last decade, and have now finally been given morphs? Pop them out into a hab somewhere and make it so they're busy at first learning about their immediate surroundings. Along the way they'll pick up bits and pieces about the larger context.

I was contemplating doing this for one of the PCs in our group (controlled by the player who hadn't read any of the EP books), but never got to because the players loved the "throw away" scenario I created for them so much that we used it to kick off the full campaign.

Pyrite Pyrite's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

I really want to second the re-substantiated idea, just because it feels like it should be so common. Maybe they're brought in to a habitat built specifically for the purpose of being a home to the homeless survivors of the fall. Or maybe they're each offered indenture contracts that are actually clear-cut and advantageous, offering to let them keep the morphs they use for the period of the contract at the end of it.

I dunno, it just feels like someone who didn't grow up with access to the mesh and social networks and constant information warfare on an individual level couldn't survive for long in the Eclipse Phase universe.

'No language is justly studied merely as an aid to other purposes. It will in fact better serve other purposes, philological or historical, when it is studied for love, for itself.' --J.R.R. Tolkien

Decivre Decivre's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

Isolate background, brinker faction, perhaps reduce the total amount of points that the players get to create their characters with. Might I recommend 700 points (300 skill points, 200 knowledge points, 200 points for custom use).

Do note, if you plan to start them off like this, you might want to advance them pretty quickly. They are 300 points weaker than the average starting character for this game.

Transhumans will one day be the Luddites of the posthuman age.

Help me get my gaming fix, if you want.

Xagroth Xagroth's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

Consider the option, previously talked about in the forum, about the Pandora Gates messing with time as well as with space.
Then make the players part of a colony that has looooong stories about a time when they reached there, and they were unable to call back to home, and were forced to stay alone. They have a heavenly way of life, and most of the technology that is common in EP is limited there (you can use part of the Jovian background for this, but 99% people here would have Splicers) because its not needed. But recently the Pandora Gate has been activated again...

A clash of cultures! How will the long-lost colony react to a society that is just myth to them, and how will Transhumanity react to lost sons that are merely human?

Motive and Opportunity! Somebody has stolen something important for the colony and fled through the Pandora Gate! The intrepid group of players has to pursue... and they eventually bump into a Gatecrashing group! Never a Red Herring has been so irrelevant.

War! The TITANS have arrived to the system and threaten the colony (or at least, you think its the TITANs). Will you be able to call for help from the long-forgotten Humanity's cradle?

apizzagirl apizzagirl's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

Another idea, other than reinstantiated infomorphs in the traditional sense is that perhaps they were in cold storage before the fall. You can have them have been in cold storage for as far back as their was cold storage before the fall. They could have been recovered by Earth crashers or in some long forgotten storage on Luna.

nezumi.hebereke nezumi.hebereke's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

You can do the cold storage. You can have them from extremely neo-conservative or even a 'paleo' habitat. You can also include it as a way of raising an ego. Either the individual is raised in an artificial, 'perfect' environment (imagine the virtual pods in Fallout 3), or the egos are implanted with memories for some reason (and the first session of play is actually the implanted memories playing out).

Arenamontanus Arenamontanus's picture
Re: "Normal" Player Characters?

My current game started with the PCs waking up (after some unsettling "dreams" of what they were doing just as the Fall struck) from being resleeved in the present. They had memory problems and were confused... only to be expected when you were saved from a drifting piece of backup server in high earth orbit.

This way I got a chance to explain the setting gradually. First their benefactor gave a rough outline of things (the Fall, mankind on Mars). Then they got to see a bit more - and got killed by a missile on the way to town... which allowed me to have a second wake-up scene and introduce the reintegration/continuity mechanics. Then at the hospital they got to select enhancements, and I could explain a bit more about the tech. They got out, and I could describe a bit of typical Martian street scenery. The plot got moving, and soon I had chances to explain both muses, forking and how to use the rep system.

I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. A gradual zoom out as the PCs learned to handle the new world... and the unsettling realization that they are pawns in something very complicated.