Chambers & Chimaeras* – Lester Smith

Warrior HeadIn the year 1984, a rogue asteroid slammed into the moon, spraying the earth with alien spores and moon dust. The earth’s magnetic poles shifted, continents and oceans changed, and chaos reigned for a thousand years. Some civilizations fell into a magical sleep. Others were overgrown by alien jungles. Ancient technologies and alien magics struggled for supremacy.

Now, to this broken land have come the evil Skele-Mat and his champion chimaera* Tia-Tor, determined to enslave the world. Opposing them are the heroic He-darr the Barbellian, carrying the legendary Sunday Sword, and his companions the Aerial Princess and Uckla the Mook.

But Skele-Mat has many servants, and He-darr can’t be everywhere. So the mysterious Chamber Master has summoned you and your friends from an ancient amusement park to come join the fray!

“Chambers and Chimaeras*”TM is a setting of tongue-in-cheek adventure in a world of 80’s Saturday morning fantasy cartoons.

Character Occupations

  • Archer: You have a slingshot that fires lightning balls.
  • Burglar: You have an invisible ring.
  • Chevalier: You have a sword that deflects every attack.
  • Gymnast: You have a ten-foot pole, and you know how to use it.
  • Savage: You have a stone hammer that shakes the earth.
  • Sidekick: You are a child chimaera*.
  • Sorcerer: You have a magic book with a mind of its own.

Character Races

The magic used by the Chamber Master to summon heroes to this age sometimes changes their racial makeup. Choose one of the following races for your character:

  • Human: Your character arrived unchanged. You may choose any one of the four attributes as Focused. (See Chapter 4: “Character Creation.”)
  • Mook: No one knows where the tall, hair-covered mooks came from, though it is commonly believed they originated a long time ago in a galaxy far away. Mook characters must Focus the Brawn attribute.
  • Rawk: Winged creatures of stone, rawks are capable of flight. They cannot swim, though they can skip across water. Rawk characters must Focus the Will attribute.
  • S’elfie: The s’elves are divided into two camps—the spiritual, woods-dwelling hymn s’elves and the sinister undergound hearse s’elves. S’elfie heroes are always hymn s’elves. All s’elves must Focus the Grace attribute.
  • Snerpent: No one knows what snerpents look like, as the creatures refuse to learn the armor skill (see below). Snerpent characters must Focus the Wits attribute.

Character Skills

Characters summoned to this setting can forget about what they knew in their own time. The following skills apply instead:

  • Armor: This skill is as much about looking good as about avoiding damage. See the “Armor Rules” section below for details.
  • Athletics: The term “athletics” includes running, jumping, and feats of balance by a physically fit person.
  • Combat: In the “Chambers and Chimaeras*”TM setting, all types of attacks—from archery to wrestling—fall under this single skill.
  • Haggling: Characters with this skill are able to get the best of a deal.
  • Healing: This skill can be interpreted as either applying bandages or sharing life energy, depending on the character.
  • Hunting: Whether foraging for food or tracking down an enemy, the hunting skill comes in handy.
  • Lockpicking: When you don’t have a key and can’t resort to magic, lockpicking is the next best thing.
  • Navigation: When you don’t have a map, and you don’t want to wander around, navigation is essential. Even when you do have a map, navigation can help for putting it to best use.
  • Persuasion: More than natural wits, this is the ability to either lie or reason convincingly.
  • Pickpocketing: Picking pockets is a part of every street thief’s repertoire.
  • Prestidigitation: When real magic fails, stage magic can be nearly as impressive.
  • Ride Animal: To ride an animal effectively means knowing how to get along with it and care for it. A riding animal also makes a good companion when nobody else wants to talk to you.
  • Second Language: Everyone in the “Chambers and Chimaeras*”TM setting understands “trade tongue.” Every race in the setting also has its own tongue, however, and understanding what’s being spoken in it can be an advantage when adventuring. The “Second Language” skill represents knowledge of any single one of those racial languages. It can be purchased multiple times to indicate separate languages (e.g. “Second Language: Hymn S’elfie” and “Second Language: Rawk.”) Note: While mooks can learn to understand other languages, they cannot actually speak anything but mook.
  • Sneaking: Using cover to move and avoiding noise can be useful in many situations.
  • Swimming: At its most basic, this is a skill of how not to drown in water, and maybe even move across it.

Actions

In order to take any action, a character must also speak a line of dialog. The “Chambers & Chimaeras*”TM setting is chatty that way.

Combat Ranges

In the “Chambers & Chimaeras*”TM setting, everything within sight is considered within attack range. Characters can move any distance to attack an enemy within view, unless the Game Host declares that they are somehow blocked (usually by minions or a force field).

Damage Rules

Attacks in the “Chambers & Chimaeras*”TM setting do no physical damage to living creatures—only to inanimate objects such as ropes, furniture, and walls. Against living targets, attacks instead cause “Awe” on the following scale.

  • Shaken: This is the most basic level of “Awe.” A shaken character suffers a 1-point penalty to all dice rolls. (E.g. for Focused rolls, a result of 8 becomes 7; for Unfocused or Unfamiliar rolls, an 8 becomes a 9.)
  • Muddled: This is a more serious level of “Awe.” A muddled character suffers a 2-point penalty to all dice rolls.
  • Dazed: A dazed character suffers a 3-point penalty to all dice rolls.
  • Dumbfounded: A dumfounded character suffers a 4-point penalty to all dice rolls.
  • Petrified: This level of “Awe” renders a character incapable of acting.
  • Floored: A character who suffers this level of “Awe” is rendered unconscious.

Weapon Ratings: Unarmed attacks have a base rating of “Shaken.” Every other type of attack has a base rating of “Muddled.” As per the basic rules, each added level of success on an attack roll increases this damage by one rating.

Note: Characters with a Brawn Focus add an additional level of damage on successful attacks.

Armor Rules

As noted above, armor in the “Chambers & Chimaeras*”TM setting is a skill. Choice of “Focused,” “Unfocused,” and “Unfamiliar” determines its type and effectiveness.

  • Unfamiliar: Characters with no armor skill wear full armor, from head to foot. When attacked, this armor rating protects against one level of “Awe” damage if the attack roll number is less than the target’s Focus number. Otherwise the armor provides no protection.
  • Unfocused: Characters with Unfocused armor skill wear half armor, leaving arms and legs exposed. When attacked, this armor rating protects against two levels of “Awe” damage if the attack roll is equal to or less than the target’s Focus number. Otherwise the armor provides one level of protection.
  • Focused: Characters with Focused armor skill wear no armor, leaving head, midriff, arms, and legs exposed. When attacked, this armor rating protects against three levels of “Awe” damage if the attack roll is equal to or above the target’s Focus number. Otherwise the armor provides two levels of protection.

The exact material of armor worn—metal, leather, or cloth—is left to each player to decide.

Magic Rules

Two types of magic exist in the “Chambers & Chimaeras*”TM setting: Binding and loosing.

Binding is used for tying ropes, gluing things together, blocking doors, rendering creatures speechless, casting nets of energy, and so on.

Loosing is used to free things, open locks, unbuckle straps, and release energy in the form of fire or light.

Neither type of magic is easily controlled. In each case, the player of a magic user states in general terms what the character hopes to accomplish, and the game host interprets the results. The more successes scored on a magic skill roll, the closer the spell will be to the user’s intent, and the more effective.

Magic Defense: When magic directly targets a living creature, the roll is also compared against the creature’s Will attribute. Each level of success with Will reduces the spell’s success by one level.

>>> More info to come. <<< * Yes, we know.

2 thoughts on “Chambers & Chimaeras* – Lester Smith

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

− 3 = 3