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epos

a Fantasy-Roleplaying Game

Introduction

This is the english translation of the rules for my Fantasy-Roleplaying Game EPOS. Since my english is not very good i hope you forgive any mistakes i make. I will be glad about any suggestions about improvements concerning the syntax, words and even the contents. (jens@gacel.de)
I have tried to keep the rules as simple as possible to encourage a fast and easy gaming. Rules should suport roleplaying, not prevent it.
There is a world called EPOS, too. But i don't think that i will translate it into english, since EPOS works with any world this should be not a problem.

I think that the unpredictability of dices is an essential part of roleplaying how i like it. So i have choosen a simple dice system in favor of a pure "Storytelling" approach. Every dice throw is made with a D10. If the throw is "open" then the calculation starts in positive direction (add). If the result is a 10 a second throw must be made and the result is depending on direction added or subtracted. A throw of 1 changes the direction and a further throw must be made.
For Example:
1. Throw: 8
result: 8

1. Throw: 10
2. Throw: 6
resukt: 10+6=16

1. Throw: 10
2. Throw: 10
3. Throw : 2
result:10+10+2= 22

1. Throw: 1
2. Throw: 7
result: 0 - 7 =-7
( the one only changes direction and is not counted)

1. Throw: 1
2. Throw: 10
3. Throw: 5
result: 0-10-5=-15

1. Throw: 10
2. Throw: 1
3. Throw: 8
result: 10-8=2

High results are good, low bad.

All rules are a 'can' and not 'must'. I encourage any GM and Player to change them as they like it.

Character

I think you know what a Charakter in a RPG is.
 

Races

The available races depend on the world you use. You should make a table with  modifications of the Attributes.

Basic Data

 Every Character has some basic data:

 

Attributes

There are 5 different Attributes:

Strength (ST) Force, physique
Dexterity (DE) precision, Body control
Willpower (WI) Concentration,self-confidence
Intuition (IN) empathy, spontaneousy
Presence (PR) apearence

This values can change during the life of a charakter. The range for a human is 1 to 10. All values are absolute, not relative to a race.
 

Endurence

Willpower+Strength
 

Reflexes

Dexterity+Intuition

Skills

Skills are all the things a Charakter learns during his life. How good a charcter has learned the skill is shown on a scale from 0 to 10 (and more). Every skill belongs to a attribute. The value of the skill can't grow over the value of the atribute.
A (incomplete) list of skills:
 

Skill Attribute
Weapon
One handed fence weapon (1 fence) GE
One handed swing weapon (1 swing) ST
One handed stab weapon (1 stab) GE
Two handed fence weapon (2 fence) GE
Two handed swing weapon (2 swing) ST
One handed stab weapon ( 2 stab) GE
Martial arts (martial) GE
Throw weapen (throw) GE
Bow (bow) GE
Crossbow (crossb) GE
Sling (sling) GE
Bodycontrol
Climbing GE
Riding IT
Sneak GE
Swiming GE
Meditation WI
Society
Dancing GE
Poetry IT
Etiquette WI
Drinking ST
Playing (e.g. cards ) IT
Craft
Smith GE
Instrument IT
falsify GE
wood carving GE
traps GE
Pickpocket GE
disarm traps GE
read trace WI
open lock GE
Healing
First help WI
Second WI
Herb lore WI
Knowledge
Read/Write WI
Language WI
Trade WI
estimate Value WI
History WI
Animal lore WI
Plant lore WI
Myth WI
Geography WI
Society WI
Religion WI
Magician
Light IT
Darkness WI
Life IT
Death WI
Psyche IT
Matter WI
Sorcerer
Understand White language WI
Speak White language WI
Understand Black language WI
Speak Black language WI
Understand Old language WI
Speak Old language WI
Magiical gestures GE
Mentat
Meditation IT
aktive Mentalism WI
passiv Mentalism IT

Equipment

The Equipment of the Chakter must be clearly noted somewhere. Especially where the item is stored is importend.

Increasing Values

Skills

Skills are increased with "experience dices" (ED). A ED is either "free" and can be used as the player likes or "linked" to a group (or single) of Skills.
Free ED are distributed after solved tasks or adventures, linked ED after using special skills very often. (E.g.: a Charakter has spend some time in the woods, so he gets a ED linked to wood skills). ED must be spend at once, it is not possible to "store" them. The GM should only distribute ED  if the gameflow is not disturbed (e.g. after a Session, or in a break)
When the Player has chosen a skill he throws a open D10. If the result is higher or equal than the actual value +2 the skill rises by one. Instead of throwing the dice the Charakter can learn a new Skill on 0. The circumstances should be so that it is possible to learn the skill (Book/Teacher...).
A skill can't rise above the attribute it belongs to. ED with bonus are possible (e.g. +1 for a good teacher)

Attribute

Attributes are increased with the same ED, but one more point is neaded for success (actual value +3). Additionally must be potential available.
 

  Potential
Strength
Dexterity
Willpower
Intuitio
Presence

It is up to the GM to decide if potential is avialable.

Tests

The GM decides how difficult the intended action is ( 0 to 20 or more) (don't tell the player). Then the player throws a open D10 and adds the value of his skill. If the value is greater or equal than the difficulty it is a success. If the value is lower the GM decides what happens.

Charakter Creation

How to create the player charakters is up to the GM (there are a lot of possiblities)
One way is the following sequence:
 

1. Race
2. Birth place and background
3. Player throws 5 D10. If the sum is lower than 25 than the player may throw again. Then he distributes the values on the 5 attributes. Then modifying the values according to race.
4. Childhood (distribution of ED)
5. Education (distribution od ED)
6. Life of the character until "now" (distribution of ED)

The amount of ED depends on the kind of campain the GM will play. I suggest 1 or 2 per "Year"
 

Combat

Fixing the actions

Combat is divided into rounds. At the start of every round all players decide what the charakters try to do. It is a general declaration of intent which can be devided into 5 categories:
 

Categorie declaration of player
Attack targer  (e.g. I attack the Dragon)
Defending -
Magic depends of system (e.g.: Spell/Target)
Movement Target  (Person/Location/Item etc.) and/or the Way
other actions What

Performing the actions

The sequence of the actions is declared by the GM (or with a Reflex check if preffered)

Close combat

All attacks are simultanesly. Every character who attacks or is attacked in the round calculates his combatpower (CP)
If the Character

There may be modifications of the CP (injuries etc)

The CP can be distributed freely on the attacking opponents.
Example:
If a charakter has a CP of 6 he can attack one opponent with 6 or two opponents with 3 or one with 2 and one with 4 or one with 3 and three with 1 or any other combination.
Against all opponents he allocates no point he defends with CP=0. To cause damage the character must attack and at least allocate 1 CP against the opponent.

When the distribution of CP is decided every player throws one open D10. This throw counts for all attacks/defenses in this round. A character who is completly unmoveable (e.g. sleeping) is not allowed to throw the dice  ( Value 0)!

CP+ Dice result = Attack Power (AP)

For every pair of combatants the AP is compared. The one with the greater value has hit his opponent (of course only if he attacks). The strength of the hit is the difference of the values minus armor (of the looser). The result is devided into four damage classes. (in brackets the number of hitpoints)  

Type of Weapon light (1) middle (2) heavy (4) very heavy (all)
A 1-2 3-6 7-15 16+
B 1-3 4-7 8-16 17+
C 1-4 5-9 10-20 21+
D 1-5 6-10 11-22 23+
E 1-6 7-12 13-25 26+
F 1-10 11-18 19-30 31+

Depending on strength of the charcter the different body parts can endure the following amount of damage:

Body part 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 after reaching 0
Head 2 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 unconscious
Torso 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 nearly dead
each Shoulder  4 4 4 5 5 5 6 6 6 7 7 7 8 not usable
each Arm 3 4 4 5 5 6 6 7 7 8 8 9 9 not usable
each leg 5 5 6 6 7 7 8 8 9 9 10 10 11 not usable

Which body part is hit decides the GM with a table (or as he likes)

Distant combat

It is not possible to defend against distant weapons with a weapon.
The CP of the attacker is reduced 1 per X meter (depending on weapon)

Movement

The character moves to the target. He can move around obstacles  and stop the movement before reaching the target.
 

Magic

see Magic

other actions

The charkter performs the action (mybe with a test on a skill)
 

Armor

  Movement (Meter/Round)  
Typ without Attack with Attack protection
light clothes 30 6 0
firm clothes 27 5 1
Lether 24 4 2
Ringmail 18 3 3
Platemail 12 2 4
Full armor 6 1 5
Shield -3 -1 +1
large Shield -6 -2 +2

A normal shield don't protects the legs.
It is possible to have different armor on different body parts.
The values are for a average unencumbered human.
 

Weapons

Close combat

If a Charcter has less than the needed ST or DE the CP is reduced by 2 .

Weapon Type min. ST min. DE Skill
Two handed Sword A 7 6 2 fence
Morningstar B 7 6 2 swing
Great Wareaxe (one blade) B 6 2 2 swing
Greate Wareaxe (two blades) A 8 2 2 swing
Warehammer B 6 0 2 swing
heavy pike B 0 0 2 stap
Halberd B 3 4 2 stap
Wareclub A/B/C/D/E  depends on size 2 swing
Longsword C 0 0 1 fence
Sword D 0 0 1 stab
Sabre C 0 0 1 fence
light Warehammer D 0 0 1 swing
Mace C 0 0 1 swing
Wareaxe D 0 0 1 swing
small Morningstar C 0 4 1 swing
Dagger E - - 1 stab
Knive F - - 1 stab
Distanst weapons
Weapon Type X Skill
Longbow C 20 Bow
Shortbow D 15 Bow
Crossbow B 25 Crossb
Sling D 15 Sling
Spear D 2 Throw
Dagger E 2 Throw
Knive F 3 Throw

for every X meter CP is reduced by 1

Magic

Magicsystems

Ther is no specific Magicsystem for Epos. The available systems depend on the Worl and the GM. To use a existing system with Epos or to create a new one it should be classified by answering the following questions. A exact answer is not always possible and there may be more then one yes to a question.

Main  category

 

Source of power/knowledge

What is the source of the power chnaging the environment? Who provides the knowledge in information spells?

 

Limitations

 

How to cast a spell

 

Example Magicsystems

This system is designed specific for the World Epos, but can be used on any other world, too.

Magician

A Magiacian uses a mixture of Scientific and Ritual magic. He opens with his Mind/Willpower a gate to one or several of the 6 planes and shapes from the in the world flowing energies the desired effect. He uses concentration, speech and gestures. The proceeding for a special effect is stored in complicated magic formulas. Every magician has its own set of  formulas, which must be explored personally. Casting spells drains the magicians endurance and there is a risk of failure.

The 6 Planes:

1. Light 
(Light, Good, Protection, Order)
2. Darkness
(Darkness, Chaos, Pain, Hate)
3. Life 
(Life, Energy, Creation, Movement)
4. Death 
(Death, End, Destruction, Silence, Peace)
5. Psyche 
(Psyche, Soul, Intellect, Feelnings, Remembrance)
6. Matter 
(Matter, Body, Power)

A spell is a combination of one or more of this plains. Every combination has for every magician a specific effect, created of the personal association of the combination of the plains (e.g. the picture in the mind the magiciand gets when thinking about Light and Matter, this could be maybe a healing spell or a protection spell). Every spell has three possible targets: Area, Organism, Item. The effect of the spell modified according to the target (a spell that heals a person repairs a item). Befor a magician can cast a spell he must explore it (which takes about  a day per plain). The formulas are written down in his peronal spellbook (this spellbook must not be physical to the Charakter, but it is necessary for the Player and GM). It contains the description of the effect on the different targets and the difficulty (set by the GM). It is possible to keep some "factors" like time or power open which are "entered" when casting the spell.  Every open factor increases the basic difficulty. When a effect for a plain combination is set the magician can't change them in his whole life. So a magician can know a maximum of 63 different spells (*3 for three targets).
The planes are learned as seperate skills. For a spell the worst learned plane is relevant.
When the spell is cast the basic difficulty is modified by situation and "size" of the entered factors. Then a test against this value is made. (Plane Skill + Open D10 must be >= difficulty)

The difficulty can be reduced with concentration/preparation:
 

Time Bonus
1 Minute (6 Rounds) 1
10 Minutes 3
1 Hour 5
8 Hours 7
1 Week 9

Casting spells cost endurence (determined by the GM) Low endurence increases the risk of failure.
If a spell fails at least some of the open factors ore the Target is changed. At worst the gates to the other plains get completly out of control.

The speed of the spell depends on the number of plains it contains.

(in the german version are some more example systems, but nothing especially intersting)


© 1999-2005 by Jens Rupp http://www.gacel.de jens@gacel.de 20. July 2005