Tuesday, January 7, 2014

GURPS Magic Notes 14: Familiar Templates

This is for my preparation for the next arc for War Beneath Heaven, a Modern Fantasy Setting set in rapidly Urbanizing African 3rd World. The really High Magery is not for all settings.

Note that Familiar is interchangeable with Ally/Minion/Companion/Avatar etc...  I tend to use it when i refer to Magical/Supernatural Ally that has some kind of special bond.

Plot Protection and Gadgets-Magical Artifacts.  Some expectations should be set regarding this, I think it helps that players are aware of the risks of their strategies but you don't need to detail it. Gadgets is a great way to cheapen Advantages, but they are intrinsically to be targeted by the NPCs (the GM) who are aware of the dependence. GMs can target it, especially if the PC is taking great risks. Combat with random hit locations can spell destruction of an artifact on the PC's person. An Artifact that is in a durable casing, despite the added bulk, is fine for this GM (it has its trade offs).

Rules for Review

  • Ally Advantage B36 particularly Accessibility: Granted by Familiar -40%
  • Frequency of Appearance B36
  • Dependents Disadvantage B131
  • Mana Enhancer B68
  • Duty B133

Non legal human Entity meta Trait [-50] - Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15*]; Dead Broke [-25]; Status -2 [-10].
* Social Stigma (Monster) [-20] is diffferent from Valuable Property only that there is no consequences in Destroying it.

This is a common disadvantage for any non-human being, especially if they are sapient (IQ6 and above).

Mana-Enhancer 1 or 2
(SM-6, -10%; DR5, -15%; Can be Stolen with an opposed Roll, -30%; Very Common Trigger: fresh blood, one-minute of use, -10%; Extra Time to Trigger, 4 seconds concentrate, -20%) [10 or 20]

Note that mages can SEE mana-enhancers Objects. Since Heroic/Villainous Mages are at Magery 15, they can easily spot mana enhancers (IQ+Magery - Range and Size). Special and Powerful Familiars afflict Mana Enhancer on their Mage. Conceal Magic is pretty expensive at 500 power to use to conceal such.

Familiars

These Familiars can talk, and are as smart as people (they have the mage's cultural familarity and preferred language). They can learn fairly technical skills, but more often they will be studying along with their Mage Thaumatology to aid them in their casting as another mage (granting as much as 3FP in ceremonial magic).

Familiars are very fragile because of their Low HP. Note that HP advantage (B16) does not translate into wound levels. Having an HP of 20 does not translate of 20/-0/-20/-40 etc. A 20HP ST4 raven is 20/-0/-4/-8/-12 etc...  Hard to Kill, for an effective HT roll of 16 is the best for the familiar.



Minor Familiar
Familiar of up to 37 points
(37 point ally 1 points; Summon-able +100%; Sympathy, death of ally brings Character to 0HP -25%; Constant Frequency x4; Dependent Freq-6 -5cp, ) 2 points

Special Familiar 
Familiar up to 75 points
(75 point ally 2 points; Summon-able +100%; Sympathy, death of ally brings Character to 0HP -25%; Constant Frequency x4; Dependent Freq-6 -2cp, ) 12 points. Typically these familiars grant mana Enhancer 1.

Powerful Familiar 
Familiar up to 112 points
(112 point Ally 3 points; Summon-able +100%; Sympathy, death of ally brings Character to 0HP -25%; Constant Frequency x4; Dependent Freq-6 -1cp) 20 points.  Typically these Familiars grant Mana Enhancer 2 .

Very Powerful Familiar 
Familiar up to 150 points
(150 point ally 5cp; Summon-able +100%; Sympathy, death of ally brings Character to 0HP -25%; Constant Frequency x4) 35 points.  Typically these Familiars grant Mana Enhancer 2 and has an Mage Novice's Template.  If anything happens to this familiar, because of how powerful it is, it can kill its mage.

Legendary Powerful Familiar 
Familiar up to 225 points
(225 point ally 10 points; Special Ability +50%; Sympathy, death of familiar kills the Character-50%; Constant Frequency x4) 70 points.  Typically these Familiars grant Mana Enhancer 2 and has an Mage Adept's Template.  If anything happens to this familiar, because of how powerful it is, it can kill its mage.


Familiar Options

Here are some familiar options, to help customize your familiar. Lesser familiar is usually taken to allow the purchase of a familiar that can grant mana-enhancer, unfortunately it deprives the familiar of Initiative to survive in the complicated machinations of other mages.You A Familiar that can read, speak, and think on its own has a better chance of surviving since mages will typically target the familar to weaken the mage (bring him down to 0HP or kill the mage).   
  • Lesser Familiar [-51] less sapient, IQ-2 but not affecting Per and Will [-20]; Cannot Speak [-15] (B125); Innumerate [-5] (B140); Illiterate [-3] (B24); No Language [-3] (B24); Hide Bound [-5]. Consider this a modified Domestic Animal Trait (B263)  
    • Modified Domestic Animal [-61]:  Cannot Speak [-15] (B125); Innumerate [-5] (B140); Illiterate [-3] (B24); No Language [-3] (B24); Hide Bound [-5]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15*]; Dead Broke [-25]; Status -2 [-10]. 
  • Vessel [-80% to the cost of Ally]. The most common example is Aladin's Lamp of an Ally bound to physical item. Your relationship with your Familiar is represented with the possession of an Item (applying gadget limitations to the advantage). Because of the pact, to gain control of the Familiar may require learning about the Duties and Codes of the Familiar. Losing Possession of this vessel means loosing control of the Ally. Example: (Can be Broken - wood, bone, ivory, ceramic etc..., DR 2, -20%; SM-6 -10%; Can be Stolen with a Quick Contest, -30%; Pact: Hazardous Duty, Freq-9, -10%; Pact: Code of Honor or Vow -10%). 
    • As you can guess, this makes cheaper allies. A Legendary Ally can cost at around 8cp from 40cp. It has its consequences, as well as Mages who want to permanently bind these allies (investing in the Magic and financial equivalent of gaining the advantage as 40cp).  
  • Afflict: Mana-Enhancer 1 [49] Affliction (B35) Granting Mana Enhancer 1 to its Mage for One Minute  (Contact Agent -30%; Accessibility: Ally -40%; Melee Attack, cannot parry -35%; Accessibility: Granted by Familiar -40%; Mana-Enhancer level 1 +500%; Optional Rule Limited Enhancements B111 applied on the Mana Enahancer) 49 points.
    • An Option is typical for Powerful Familiars with humble appearance. 
  • Afflict: Mana-Enhancer 2 [99] Affliction (B35) Granting Mana Enhancer 2 to its Mage for One minute (Mana-Enhancer level 1 +1000%; Contact Agent -30%; Accessibility: Ally -40%; Melee Attack, cannot parry -35%; Accessibility: Granted by Familiar -40%) 99 points. 
    • An Option is typical for Very Power Familiars with humble appearances. 
  • Extra Fatigue+25 [15+1+1]. (Limitations: Granted by Familiar -40%; Under Hypnotic Trance -30%; Only Usable for Spellcasting -10% in M15 - in the box) [15]; Perk Autotrance (B101;) [1]; Autohypnosis (Will/H) [1] (B179) 
    • Note you cannot Talk or Move in a Trance-like State (see B179), making this power usable in spells of skill-20+. 
    • Another Option is the following (Limitations: Granted by Familiar -40%; Only in Emergencies -30%; Only Usable for Spellcasting -10% in M15 - in the box)
    • Another is (Limitations: Granted by Familiar -40%; Half Power while under stress -30% B110; Only Usable for Spellcasting -10% in M15 - in the box) 
    • The GM may want to limit how to exploit this, if this is bundled with the Familiar Vessel means CP invested into something that can  
  • Mind Link (B70) [5+]. A mage with just mindlink advantage an use Comm/Empathy Spells like Communication spell (M48) as long as he has access to the college/path because the wording on mind link automatic success. If you want some limitations, a Thaumatology of 19 would have a Communication Spell-3.  Both the mage and the familiar have to get this advantage. If the familiar does not make the requirements or does not take the advantage, it will not be able to Initiate a Communication and its the mage who will have to keep checking up on it.  
    • Other Spells that may be usedul: Telepathy M47, Dream Projection M46, Dream Viewing M45, Dream Sending M45, Message M175, Mind Sending M47, 
    • [GM Ruling] Spells the GM should consider if it counts as Special Rapport: Body Reading M88, Seeker (M105), Trace (M106), Soul Rider M49, Possession M49...  
      • If a Mage is able to Possess his familiar to do recon, this would be interesting (especially if the mage wants to give away his presence with mana-enhancer self afflicted) and start casting spells. I'm on the fence about this. 
    • Telesend (Accessibility: Granted by Familiar -40% Magical -10%) [15] is an option for non-mages magical characters.
      • Cheaper Telesend (Accessibility: Granted by Familiar -40%; Magical -10%; 2FP/1FP to maintain -10%; Limited Uses 10/day -10%; Extra-Time 8 seconds to activate -30%) [3]

Dog Familiar

-16 points template
Abilities and Characteristics [32]:
ST9 [-10] HP9 SPD5.75
DX11 [12, -40% no fine manipulators] Will10 Move 9 [20] (~39kph or ~24mph)
IQ8 [-40] Per12 [20]
HT12[20] FP10 SM-0
Dodge 8 Parry- DR-

Traits [-56]: Chummy [-5]; Discrimatory Smell [15]; Sharp Teeth [1]; Night Vision 5 [5]; Discriminatory Smell [15]; Quadruped (B263) [-35]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15]; Dead Broke [-25]; Status -2 [-10]; Duty, Hazardous to Master (Freq-15) [-15]; Hard to Kill +4 [8].
Skills [8]: Tracking-13 [4]; Brawling-13 [4]
Class: Animal, Familiar
Note: Can Speak

Cat Familiar

-88 point template
Abilities and Characteristics [-32]:
ST4 [-60] HP4 SPD6
DX14 [48, -40% no fine manipulators ] Will10 Move5/10 
IQ8 [-40] Per12 [30]
HT10 FP10 SM-3
Dodge9 Parry- DR-

Traits [-37]: Combat Reflex [15]; Magery [5]; Night Vision 5 [5]; Catfall [15]; Sharp Teeth [1]; Quadruped (B263) [-35]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15]; Dead Broke [-25]; Enchanced Ground move 1 [10]; Status -2 [-10]; Duty, Hazardous to Master (Freq-15) [-15]; Hard to Kill +6 [12]
Skills [8]: Brawling-16 [4]; Stealth-15 [4]
Class: Animal, Familiar
Note: Can Speak

Raven Familiar

-21 point template
Abilities and Characteristics [-15]:
ST3 [-70] HP3 SPD6
DX14 [80] Will10 Move 2[-15]
IQ8 [-40] Per12 [30]
HT10 FP10 SM-4
Dodge10 Parry- DR-

Traits [-2]: Acute Vision 2 [4]; Telescopic Vision 2 [10] Magery 0 [5]; Night Vision 5 [5]; Sharp Beak [1]; Flight (Winged -25%; +3 move, Air Move-12) [36]; One Arms (Uses Beak) [-20]; Ham Fisted [5]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15]; Dead Broke [-25]; Status -2 [-10]; Duty, Hazardous to Master (Freq-15) [-15] Hard to Kill +6 [12]
Skills [8]: Brawl-16 [4]; Scrounging-14 [4]
Class: Animal, Familiar


Venomous Snake Familiar

-34 point template
Abilities and Characteristics [-31]:
ST 7 [-30]  HP7 SPD5.75
DX12 [24] Will10 Move 4 [-5]
IQ8 [-40] Per10 [20]
HT11 [10] FP11 SM-0
Dodge10 Parry- DR-

Traits [-18]: Cold blooded (50 degrees) [-5]; Night Vision 5 [5]; Innate Attack Toxic (Blood Agent -40%; Melee Attack, Reach-C -30%; Onset -10%; Cyclic, every 10 seconds with 10 cycles +500% ) [21];  Sharp Fangs [1]; Magery 0 [5]; Double Jointed [15]; No Legs (Slithers) [0]; One Arm [-20] Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15]; Dead Broke [-25]; Status -2 [-10]; Duty, Hazardous to Master (Freq-15) [-15] Hard to Kill +5 [10]

Skills [10]: Thaumaturgy-25 [8]; Stealth-12 [2];
Class: Animal, Familiar

War Pony Familiar

28 point template
Abilities and Characteristics [75]:
ST21 (-10% SM+1, -40% no Fine Manipulators) [55] HP21 SPD5.5
DX10 Will11 [5] Move 7/14 [5] 
IQ8 [-40] Per12 [30]
HT12 [20] FP12 SM+1
Dodge9 Parry- DR-

Traits [-59]: Combat Reflex [15]; Quadruped (B263) [-35]; Chummy [-5]; Peripheral Vision [15]; Weak Bite [-2]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15]; Dead Broke [-25]; Enhanced Ground move 1 [10]; Status -2 [-10]; Duty, Very Hazardous to Rider [-20]; Hard to Kill +4 [8] .
Skills [12]: Mount-12 [8]; Brawl-12 [4]
Class: Animal, Familiar
Note: Can Speak

War Saddle Horse Familiar

10 point template
Abilities and Characteristics [60]:
ST24 (-10% SM+1, -40% no Fine Manipulators) [70] HP24 SPD5
DX9 [-20] Will11 [5] Move 6/12 [5] 
IQ8 [-40] Per12 [30]
HT11 [10] FP12 SM+1
Dodge9 Parry- DR-
Traits [-62]: Combat Reflex [15]; Quadruped (B263) [-35]; Chummy [-5]; Peripheral Vision [15]; Weak Bite [-2]; Social Stigma (Valuable Property) [-15]; Dead Broke [-25]; Enhanced Ground move 1 [10]; Status -2 [-10]; Duty, Very Hazardous to Rider [-20]; Hard to Kill +5 [10] .
Skills [12]: Mount-11 [8]; Brawl-11 [4]
Class: Animal, Familiar
Note: Can Speak
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