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30

No, this isn't novel (although that does not mean that it isn't clever design in Numenera). There are two separate things married in that mechanic as you've described it. Both have been done before, and I can think of at least one game that has married them in the same way before. First there is the concept of a pull mechanic. Most GM-initiated events are ...


22

Numenera is not more strongly tied to party size than any other trad style RPG. Like any trad style RPG, however, it's going to have trouble, or at least require special techniques, when dealing with, in this case, less than three or more than six characters. Why Less Than Three? There are three character classes - glaives, jacks, and nanos. In class ...


21

Edge (p. 20) doesn't give you free levels and let you spend it to reduce the Effort spent. When the book says "Once a stat’s Edge reaches 3, you can apply one level of Effort for free," it just means that 3 Effort - 3 Edge = 0. That's what it means by "free". So, the reason your math isn't working is because you're applying Edge twice instead of once. For ...


13

The rules on page 94 specifically say "The first time you rest each day...", "The second time you rest each day..." and so on. This means you have to take the rests in that order.


12

The cypher system is extremely simple, which is one of it's great strengths, and I think the system by itself can stand up just fine without cyphers. After all, ultimately they are just items, and there is an upper limit on how many you can carry anyway, so they aren't required to be able to play a normal game. However, virtually any of the existing written ...


11

I had asked this directly to Monte Cook and Shanna Germain, and, straight from Shanna's keyboard: Not at all. It likely depends on how many people the GM is comfortable having around the table more than anything. All adventures can be scaled up or down by adding additional challenges and creatures, or by raising or lowering the levels of creatures ...


10

I'm going to answer this question in a system-agnostic manner, as the question posed is one I've had to address a great deal in my own games despite never actually running Numenera specifically. (I tend to run superhero games, so it's quite a regular occurrence that I have to balance combats for a diverse group of character abilities.) Your first priority ...


10

Before you make the roll. It's very easy to miss the rule, as it is on page 21, and rarely spoken again through the book. You don’t have to apply Effort if you don’t want to. If you choose to apply Effort to a task, you must do it before you attempt the roll—you can’t roll first and then decide to apply Effort if you rolled poorly.


9

If you become trained in a skill, it exactly cancels out any inability in that same skill. This is effectively the long-term gain you call out - though you should note that becomming trained in this way counts as one of the four improvements you can take per tier.


9

From the margin notes of p26 of the Cypher System Rulebook: Might defense: Used for resisting poison, disease, and anything else that can be overcome with strength and health. Speed defense: Used for dodging attacks and escaping danger. This is by far the most commonly used defense task. Intellect defense: Used for fending off mental ...


9

The answer to the title question is a simple "No." Not according to the rules, as written. You need to refer to the section on Actions (p198): Anything that your character does in a round is an action. It’s easiest to think of an action as a single thing that you can do in five to ten seconds... Putting away your bow and pushing a heavy bookcase ...


8

Numenera is a game that is fairly resistant to the effects of party imbalance, so it isn't too much of a problem once your players realize that experience spent on short-term benefits can mean the difference between life and death (or at least unconsciousness), and you realize that setting difficult encounters can sometimes be a good thing. You will learn ...


8

You do not have a problem, you just think you do... In my not so humble opinion, party balance is a myth, and power gamers will game any system no matter what house rules you use. So, my advise is do not even try. In Numeneria, the recommended way is to split the XP pool but that is just that: a guideline. Any player should be free to use the XP in ...


8

I've been in this situation. Or rather, I've been in a situation similar enough: One of the PCs had started flying ("Who manipulates gravity"), and all the thugs attacking them were bound to the ground. I hadn't prepared for that situation, as that character had only just joined the group. Fortunately, Numenera has a convenient mechanic that works perfectly ...


8

Your girlfriend's birthday has almost certainly passed, but this seems to fit your requirements so well, I'll answer for future Googlers. Monte Cook games recently released Weird Discoveries: Ten Instant Adventures for Numenera. They are self-contained short adventures, specifically set up for minimal prep and pressure on the GM, and have pregenerated ...


8

This is from page 84 of the corebook: The GM doesn’t have to tell the player what the target number is, but he can give her a hint, especially if her character would reasonably know if the action was easy, average, difficult, or impossible. This is from the Numenera GM Screen: It’s okay to tell players—particularly starting players—the ...


8

Page 88 of the core rule book lists Knock Down as a possible major effect (it's listed again in optional rules on Page 113). About that, it says: The foe is knocked prone (see Position, page 95). It can get up on its turn if it wishes. So getting up takes an action. In the spirit of the sort of cinematic adventure I like, I'd call it "Moving a ...


7

In games other than Numenera and The Strange, cyphers may not even be physical things. They might be moments of inspiration or surges of unusual potential, glitches in super abilities, stim patches, cybernetics, supernatural intervention, and so forth. However they manifest, cyphers provide the Cypher System with a unique way to make the game constantly ...


7

In Numenera practically everything has a level, but there is no such thing as an item level as opposed to a cypher level - a cypher, like a door, like a lock, like an NPC, just has a single level associated with it which is a measure of its power, ability, resilience, what it takes to craft with it, and just about anything else that would require a roll or ...


6

Several good suggestions have been made, but they're all from later than West End Games' classic Torg, which is the earliest game I can think of to make fate points and XP the same thing. Torg's "possibilities" represented the ability to manipulate fate both in- and out-of-character. Possibilities were earned where other games have xp. They could be spent ...


6

Cyphers require an attack, usually Int-based (with a few exceptions). From the Numenera Corebook, p84: Each character gets one turn each round. On a character’s turn, she can do one thing—an action. All actions fall into one of three categories: Might, Speed, or Intellect (just like the three stats). Many actions require die rolls—rolling a d20. ...


6

Don't have the book where I can reach it at the moment, so I'll try to update this when I'm at home, but: Yes, you have to take your rests in sequence. This is spelled out (at least in the Cypher System Core Rules book, which I have) where it talks about taking multiple rests in immediate sequence (for instance, rolling all your recoveries in an overnight ...


6

Regarding duration Duration depends on the descriptive text of the attack or cypher. Some will say X rounds, others will say Y minutes per cypher level, others might not specify one at all. In Numenera, 1 minute = approximately 10 rounds of combat (see page 85 of the Numenera corebook), so units of time can be converted to rounds using that metric. For ...


5

When using the artifact against an NPC, the player would only roll to hit (since it's an aimed long-range weapon), which would be a Speed roll for the purposes of knowing what pool to spend from for effort, et al. The NPC would then either pass or fail defending against the stun intellect-based effect based on whether its level was equal-to-or-higher or ...


5

The GM always sets the difficulties that need to be beaten, as such, when players interact with an NPC that requires the NPC to do something (such as asking him to pick a lock for them) you decide the difficulty of the lock and if the NPC isn't high enough level to meet or beat that DC, they fail. An NPC who is Level 5 at Lockpicking always succeeds (unless ...


5

Well, to me it looks like a mix between Hero Points as found in Hero Quest and Fate points from FATE games. HeroQuest's Hero Points : Though they're only awarded at the end of an adventure, they too can be used as much to advance the character as to bump up one's results in a skill contest. Fate Points, on the other hand, are a "story currency" that goes ...


5

Note in advance that there is no published reference to exactly how this should be treated (that I can find) - this is based purely on the otherwise published intent of the experience system of the game (and how I interpret it). Also note that the Numenera core rulebook as written does feature many ambiguous and seemingly unpolished rules, so are often open ...


5

When teaching Numenera to new players, my usual bullet points are: Effort - use as many times per action as the amount you have, reduces difficulty by 1 level. Costs 3 points from the relevant pool for first use in an action, 2 points for subsequent uses for the same action. Edge - discounts the total pool cost spent by the player that action, including ...


5

In every campaign I have played as a player we were allowed to recover some of the arrows after a fight. No rules or reason were explained. As DM I would rule the following and adjust that according to the circumstances Some ammunition is simply lost. Bolts which missed and are burried in the ground of a grassy plain, arrows which landed in a river and ...


5

"Wields two weapons at once" is a focus, not a descriptor -- and there's another one, "Needs no weapon" (Cypher System p. 128). Under the Cypher system rules (of which Numenera is a subset), you can't use "two weapons at once" simultaneous with "no weapon", because a character can have only a single focus. Further, unarmed fighting in general, regardless ...



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