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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 ...


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 ...


19

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 ...


10

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 ...


9

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 ...


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'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 ...


8

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.


7

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 ...


6

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

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 ...


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

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

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

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. ...


4

This is not an easy question to answer in terms of scope, but I'll give it a try. Spycraft and Exalted both offer players devil deals regarding XP. Either take this in game benefit, or you can take extra XP. In Spycraft this was based on Action Point/Hero Point style narrative currency tokens that you could spend in game for various effects or keep for ...


4

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 ...


4

Page 22 states Instead of applying Effort to reduce the difficulty of your attack, you can apply Effort to increase the amount of damage you inflict with an attack. For each level of Effort you apply in this way, you inflict 3 additional points of damage. This works for any kind of attack that inflicts damage... and page 53 states, for "Shroud ...


4

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 ...


3

The free Character Creation Walkthrough gives them a quick step-by-step guide to character creation. But it doesn't go into how to play, or what all the descriptor, type & focus choices mean. The Player's Guide covers all the rules information the players will need, but it is 64 pages. Other than summarizing the rules yourself, or getting the players to ...


3

When the player initiates it, it definitely costs XP as according to p112; it's like gaining a new esotery or skill, but follows the rules for crafting on p107-108. The group does not gain XP in this way. For instance, p108 says, If the tinkering results in a long-term benefit for the character - such as creating an artifact that she can use - the GM ...


3

I came up with an idea for a house rule regarding XP. I remember reading a bit in the core book about how it would be acceptable for a GM to limited the amount of XP that could be spent on Advancement at higher Tiers. Also, I like the idea that when you get higher in ability, advancement becomes slower. So here's my idea: At low Tiers, you can spend your XP ...


3

It would apply - think about it this way; a task is impossible to achieve whether it is difficulty 10 or 11 so the question is purely academic at that point. But if a character applies 5 levels of effort and is also dazed, the net modifeir to the difficulty is -5 + 1 = -4 i.e. difficulty 6.


3

Numenera is designed for a party of any size It’s important to note that creature toughness or any other kind of difficulty in the game is a matter of the GM giving meaning to the fictional reality of the setting, not performing game mechanical mathematic surgery. There is no concept in Numenera of “a challenge of N level is appropriate to a party of N+X ...


3

From a purely mechanical point of view the two effects would stack, as they do not conflict in any way. Howls at the Moon gives +8 to your Might Pool, +1 to your Might Edge, +2 to your Speed Pool, and +1 to your Speed Edge while Sculpt Flesh states The damage dealt by the target’s unarmed strikes increases to 4 points From a more ...


3

In general I do not permit ammunition recovery. It's heading downrange at a great velocity. There are two basic fates: It's stopped by something or it continues until gravity brings it down. Most things capable of stopping an arrow will cause a wooden shaft to shatter, they will blunt any tip even if the shaft survives. While a blunted tip might be used ...


3

I'll start with whether attack and damage are different "Tasks". No. The damage is a result of the attack task. Page 22 of the corebook states: When you apply Effort, subtract your relevant Edge from the total cost of applying Effort. And just later, Multiple Uses of Effort and Edge If your Effort is 2 or higher, you can apply Effort to ...


2

The earliest example I've encountered of XP doing double duty as drama points is first edition Shadowrun (released in 1989, which beats Torg by a year, according to Wikipedia). Players are awarded Karma at the end of each session, which can then be used as either Good Karma (spending it on permanent improvements to the character, such as skill increases) or ...



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