Progressive Folk Magic for Mythras

Folk magic is described as petty magic available usually to most folk. This has led to design decisions that folk magic spells in RAW are ‘fixed’ in strength and placed low in the ladder of magical strength. It can also be stronger like it was in history of the game. If you want variable folk magic spells from AiG you could use these  rules.  To keep the relative strength of the magic systems aligned the spells variability is controlled by the Folk Magic skill level required and INT required.

Bear in mind that this makes the folk magic spells significantly more powerful (and also weaker in the lower end of intensity) and take this into account on your campaign’s magic levels. 

You might also want to constrain the intensity attainable per spell to certain cults and/or cult levels. So for example Healing intensity 1-3 are available to everybody and Healing 4 to shamans of any cult.  Healing intensity 5 or higher is only available to Healing cult or Healing Cult’s Priest level. If you use progressive version of the spell it replaces in its technical effect the RAW version.

Caster does not have to use full intensity available.

The spell table shows how each of the spells are modified by intensity. Those spells not on the list stay fixed as they are.

With this system for example:

Bladesharp adds dice bonus to blade weapon damage. Only dice bonus is magical. For example intensity 4 would give +1d4 added damage and cost 4 MP. It would require 61% in Folk Magic skill and at least 10 INT

These rules distilled from AiG are used with permission and are slight modification in presentation from the original.

The spell table and skill/int table is in here

Other useful charts would be in here

Cthulhu creatures slither into MeG from Weird of Hali

Mythras Encounter Generator strives to help the busy GM in creating creatures for Mythras campaigns easily.

Weird of Hali – a gateway supplement to Mythras is full of Cthulhu creatures and other goodness (mad scientists, cultists, poisons etc). Here is a first set of Cthulhoid creatures in MeG format.

What if your PC’s benefactor turned out to be Valusian Serpent People Infiltrator whose carpet turned out to be Shoggoth,Household and whose trusted servants were actually a tribe of blood thirsty Voormis Warriors. If you wait too long to escape the Flying Polyp could find its way in. In the outskirts of the mountains the mining operation was actually a Mi-Go enterprise – protected by Mi-Go Warrior and the reason for the odd dwindling of the fisheries is that a colony of Deep Ones has appeared.

There are other shoggoths as well – the normal Shoggoth,Adult and the mighty Shoggoth,Antarctic. There is also a Cthulhoid Ghoul. Other Cthulhu creatures in the MeG (with stats from other sources) _ Nightgaunt and Shoggoth

The MeG contains currently 3966 published templates for NPCs and monsters for various campaigns – the content is crowdsourced and it is easy to find creatures or add new ones. There exists also tools to get the info in json format and insert that into roll20 or Foundry

Encumbrance Calculator V2.1 is out for Mythras

The encumbrance calculator makes it easy to calculate the effect of encumbrance. This can be especially important when the players want to use heavy armor but their character or drag along multitude of equipment.

The following changes are in the new version:

Sheet has new look and feel.

  • it shows the selected worn armor, its ENC and APs
  • it shows the selected carried armor
  • it shows the selected weapons
  • it shows the selected equipment
  • and finally it shows the amount of loot ENC carried

The ENC limits are shown in a different way.

The effect on skills is shown and highlighted in more compact way.

With the CON added it shows how often to roll for endurance outside the fights.

Same, more importantly, shows how often you need to roll for endurance within the fight.

All the armor / material combinations from the standard book are included. The name informs the material.

If you select more from the worn armor than human has locations – it will give a warning message at the top. Same goes if you forgot to select all.

The armor rows show selectors for Milieu eras (prehistoric, ancient and so on) – so you can select the appropriate armor.

Material examples for each armor piece show various materials and there is a link or explanation for armor kind.

It should be now quite effortless to calculate the encumbrance.

The link is here Unfortunately it requires now Excel 2019…

Mythras Combat Style Traits Encyclopaedia 2022 Weird of Hali and Stupor Mundi Release

The directory based combat style cards have been replaced by Combat Style Card Encyclopaedia

I updated the Encyclopedia of Mythras Combat Style Traits to include the styles from Weird of Hali (from Aeon Games), Diadochi Warlords and Stupor Mundi (from Alephtar Games)  Now it contains altogether 103 Combat Style Traits for fantasy campaigns

These are the new combat style traits incorporated. You can find it here

Diadochi Pike* (Diadochi Warlords)
Claymore (Stupor Mundi)
Cloak Defense (Stupor Mundi)
Dagger Prowess (Stupor Mundi)
Improved Surrender (Stupor Mundi)
Street Fighter (Sofia of the Ironlands)
Horse Archery (Stupor Mundi)
Longbow (Stupor Mundi)
Joint Locks (Weird of Hali)
Blind Fighting (Weird of Hali)
Pressure Points (Weird of Hali)
Sucker Punch (Weird of Hali)

Mythic Rome Goes to War. Combat Style Cards for all Combat Styles in Mythic Rome

The directory based combat style cards have been replaced by Combat Style Card Encyclopaedia

Here are Combat Style Cards for playing Mythras in Mythic Rome.

Created all weapons for Mythic Rome and combat style cards for all of the combat styles in Mythic Rome

There now exist combat style cards for the following Mythic Rome styles

Mythic Rome overall

  • Samnite Gladiator
  • Gaul Gladiator
  • Thracian Gladiator
  • Retiarius Gladiator
  • Horseman Gladiator

Mythic Rome Pre 4th Century

  • Roman Cavalry – Pre 4th Century
  • Roman First Class Infantry – Pre 4th Century
  • Roman Second or Third Class Infantry – Pre 4th Century
  • Roman Fourth Class Infantry – Pre 4th Century
  • Roman Fifth Class Infantry – Pre 4th Century
  • Aequi or Volsci Warrior
  • Gallic Warrior
  • Gallic Fanatic
  • Gallic Charioteer
  • Gallic Cavalry

Mythic Rome 4th Century

  • Hastati and Principes 4th Century
  • Triarii 4th Century
  • Rorarii and Accensi 4th Century
  • Leves 4th Century
  • Samnite Heavy Infantry
  • Samnite Light Infantry
  • Samnite Cavalry
  • Heavy Gallic Infantry
  • Light Gallic Infantry
  • Gallic Charioteer 3rd-1st Century
  • Gallic Cavalry 3rd-1st Century
  • Heavy Macedonian Phalangite
  • Light Macedonian Phalangite
  • Macedonian Cavalry

Mythic Rome 3rd Century

  • Hastati and Principes 3rd Century
  • Triarii 3rd Century
  • Velites 3rd Century
  • Roman Cavalry 3rd Century

Mythic Rome Carthage 3rd Century

  • Libyan Phalangite
  • Iberian Swordsmen (Scutarii)
  • Iberian Skirmishers (Caetrati)
  • Iberian Cavalry
  • Numidian Cavalry
  • Elephant Cavalry

Mythic Rome Late Republic

  • Legionary
  • Legionary Officer
  • Auxilia Gallic or German Cavalry
  • Auxilia Mercenary Archer
  • Auxilia Balearic Mercenary Slinger

You can find the description for combat style cards here and the combat style cards themselves are here (see folders with names starting Mythic Rome). Altogether there should now be almost 450 Combat Style Cards for various periods. If you find that something important is missing that has been published, please inform.

Stupor Mundi – Combat Style Cards for 13th Century Mythras with additions for Korantia / Thennla and Meeros

The directory based combat style cards have been replaced by Combat Style Card Encyclopaedia

Here are Combat Style Cards for playing Mythras in the 13th Century Europe and Middle East.

Created all weapons for Stupor Mundi and combat style cards for all of the combat styles in Stupor Mundi and Korantia

There now exist combat style cards for the following Stupor Mundi styles

  • Pilgrim
  • City Folk
  • Street Thug
  • Seaman
  • Knight
  • Muslim Knight
  • Soldato di Ventura
  • Archer
  • Highlander
  • Yeomanry
  • Horse Archer

There are also now more Combat Style Cards for Korantia gathered from several Thennla scenarios.

  • Thennalt Hunter
  • Thennalt Thane
  • Thennalt Skirmisher
  • Beastman Warrior
  • Taskan Swordsman
  • Taskan Citizen Infantry
  • Kismek Archer
  • Kismek Lancer

There are also some styles for Meeros

  • Frontier Rogue
  • Frontier Skullcrusher
  • Clan Warrior
  • Kirstet villager
  • Kirstet Scout

You can find the description for combat style cards here and the combat style cards themselves are here (see folder Stupor Mundi West, Meeros and Korantia). Altogether there should now be almost 400 Combat Style Cards for various periods. If you find that something important is missing that has been published, please inform.

I have also fixed and tuned the weapons database so all the weapons should now have the correct narrow space modifiers and special effects (affects mostly newly created weapons)

Guest Post: A Retrospective on Mythras Monster Island Campaign After 18 Months of Almost Weekly Gaming.

This is a guest post from Antalon, the GM for a Mythras Monster Island campaign I am playing in.

Note from me as a player: The campaign has truly been loads of fun. Everything just clicks – in addition to having a great cast of main characters and really super people playing them – the antagonists that we try to survive interacting with are also worthy and the sandbox lives and reacts – everything has consequences. Much kudos is due to @Antalon for being a world class GM and keeping all this together.

I would heartily recommend the passions made and run in the style that @Antalon writes. it has given the play and characters so much…

Guest post from Antalon starts

In August 2020 I first brought together a new group to play test a scenario idea I had for Monster Island. As the year closes, I thought to share some experiences in running a weekly, near 18 month long Monster Island campaign.  I’m very lucky to have got the ‘platinum’ standard of players – respectful to each other, engaging in the setting and invested in their characters and happy to kick back and have a laugh – we need it at the moment!  I’ve posted the actual adventures to the Discord channel, if your scroll back, here: https://discord.gg/mzTEjXTVc2
 
Monster Island
For the uninitiated, Monster Island is a setting supplement and bestiary for ‘sandbox’ play that evokes the weird fantasy-science of Clark Ashton Smith, oozing a pulpy sword and sorcery theme, which also acts as a ‘demonstrator model’ of how to adjust Mythras to evoke a tone, culture and flavourful magic.  It is rich, evocative and inspiring – and for me is King Kong meets the Golden Voyage of Sinbad.
 
The players and group
The group comprised two of my long-time gaming buddies from face to face groups when I played regularly in London pubs, and two people new to me that I knew slightly from discussion boards or had met via GenCon Mythras games.  Ages ranged from mid-30s to over 50.  Experience with Mythras and/ or predecessors is strong.  The idea was for a short 5-6 session game.  We’re still playing more or less weekly…
 
My learning:  Setting a tone via passions works well, I set the following to be adopted when designing characters:
·        A drive, representing a personal goal or ambition like ‘defeat the foes of my father’ or ‘become the world’s greatest thief’;
·        A vice, such as a dependency, habit or social flaw such as vanity, greed or compulsive liar;
·        A fear or superstition, for example of sorcery, spirits, or something mundane (snakes?).
 
I also believe that a great campaign is down to 30% GM and 70% players: everyone contributes to making the game great.  The single biggest insight: players should not tell other players what their character should do.  In this campaign, I noted that no one was hectoring, badgering or complaining at another player to “move there”, “hit him”, “don’t use that special, use this”.  It makes game play relaxed and fun if everyone respects each other’s right to judge, decide and do whatever action they think best!
 
Structured adventures verses sandbox
Monster Island can be challenging for structure scenarios: only one ‘civilised’ settlement exists, and the interior of the island does not allow easy or safe travel, it is also comprised of quite ‘alien’ cultures.  Careful thought is needed to adopt many traditional adventure tropes.  Further, adventures can feel ‘claustrophobic’, with a small population in Port Grimsand, everyone is likely to know your businesses (I actually quite like this).  This also means that player characters may quickly become noticeable, or notable, very early in their careers: if you make enemies in Grimsand, there are very few places to hide!  What is essential is to develop the factions within Port Grimsand, and use these to anchor the adventure themes and the response to the player characters.  Monster Island gives enough to kick off these factions, but each GM must build this and there are many RPG tools / advice out there to help.  I used ideas from Night’s Black Agents to develop a hierarchy of antagonist response, and kept notes of each faction and its current attitude toward the player characters.  I would do more, perhaps using Kevin Crawford’s ideas.  
 
After much longer than I thought, the play test part was over: we wanted to carry on playing!  This is where I leaned on the sandbox elements of Monster Island – along with continuing to build a sense of the factions.  Monster Island is meant for sandbox and, with the right players and strong motivations for player characters, the setting really sings.  All I have done since is tried to stay one step ahead of the players every week, and reflect on how the story that has unfolded from the player’s actions should colour the next session: there is no need for a wider meta-plot!  Villains have evolved naturally, and following Mythras’ predecessors, no one is just ‘evil’, people simply have motives and varying tolerances for taking ruthless action!
 
The challenge, however, is to ensure that all players have spotlight time.  I’m still working on this.  And, I feel at risk of a degree of ‘sameness’, to the extent that the group stumbles from one disastrous situation and into the next, without a clear reason.  I’ve found I need to try and anchor actions back to Passions: passions are the secret weapon of Mythras GMs!  And, although no overall meta-plot is needed, what I have tried to do is consider what the story arc looks like given the player-character intentions.  In this game, so far, actions have been driven by a very early exposure to a virulent and very nasty disease: this has been the core behind the overall game direction, finding a cure whilst delaying the onset of the disease.  This core plot driver arrived entirely by chance – a nosy adventurer, a random table roll and a failed Endurance check.  What I’ve learned is that detailed planning is for the next session, but having a ‘mental map’ of how the upcoming sessions could develop is enough to give – in retrospect – a sense of ‘story arc’.  I feel that ‘story’ in RPGs is the thing we describe after we have played, it is retrospective and player-driven.
 
Mechanics
Monster Island makes a number of small tweaks to the core Mythras magic system.  These are simple, so add flavour and not complexity.  Otherwise it runs ‘out of the box’, with the core rules.  As you may expect special effects make combat both rewarding and gamble – never enter a fair fight in Port Grimsand!
 
As GM, I’ve used two mechanics to push the pulp-tone of sword and sorcery, to create a Lankhmar-like port town and a primeval jungle, with hint of the Cthonic.  First, the passion rules.  Make these flexible, and use them as both regular skills as well as augments: but I have also imposed a check against a passion to make a player character act ‘passionately’.  If players want a ‘disruptive’ passion, the least I can do is reward that by making the passion bite at a delicate time… Second, adjusting the frequency of Luck Point refreshes signals just how daring player characters should be – and how many risks players feel comfortable with.  I don’t use group Luck Points, but refresh personal Luck Points in full every session – and our sessions are usually only 2 hours long.  This means more risks are taken – more pulp action! 
 
What’s really worked well
This campaign has gone really, really ‘right’.  Nothing special from me, but the points above suggest:
·        Align player character passions with the campaign setting – and use passions actively and fluidly to mirror how the player and GM feel about the relationships between characters
·        Allow space for inter-player character interaction – let rivalry and friendship develop within the adventuring group, as this makes for rich story telling
·        React and respond to the players – make their suggestions part of the setting, even if with a perverse twist…
·        Keep the Island’s secrets, secret, but do give some clear, and tangible leads.  Monster Island is very rich in ancient lore and mysterious locations. The trouble is, if players don’t know of them, they cannot drive the action.  Getting the balance right matters (I’m working on that too)
·        Keep the players off balance.  Monster Island justifies you, as GM, to throw in pretty much anything (lost legion of Romans?  Crashed Airships or Rocketships?).  However weird, the jungle, in the end, will bury it… 
 
What’s more difficult 
Very little really, but as noted more typical adventure tropes can be tricky to use.  I feel slightly exposed to repeating similar themes: how many enigmatic Lizardfolk shaman can one really meet before it gets tired?
I also find challenging that only a single, accessible settlement, is open to humanocetric characters.  But, this is easily fixed.  I just need to place Monster Island somewhere and enable more transit back and forth: the inner sea of Thennla is very tempting.  And, Loz, if you’re listening, we need a map with grid co-ordinates and a player version of the hex map (think Isle of Dread…).
 
Conclusion
We’re nearly 18 months in.  This campaign has plenty of legs still.  The Monster Island setting is absolutely stuffed full of inspiration: every time I read it, I find something that triggers my imagination and keeps me hungry to run the setting.  And, I’m grateful to my players for rewarding my efforts with such full and fun sessions in the twisted streets of Grimsand, and now the humid jungles of interior of Monster Island!  Hoping for much more in 2022!

The thread for discussing this is in Design Mechanism forums

You will find the Monster Island supplement here and Bird in Hand – a magnificent scenario for Monster Island written by @Antalon here

Mythras Combat Example from Monster Island campaign

The following combat example was from a Monster Island campaign I am playing in. The I in the text is my character Muammar al-Abbar – a 53 year old pirate using combat style Water Dancer from the campaign.

The example does not contain all the blows, rolls and tactics used.

The Combat from the Perspective of Muammar the Pirate

The lizardman brave had something to prove. He did not have as many
tattoos and scars as the elder warriors, but he had a very thick skin
and was larger than a big, strong man.

He seemed to think I had slighted some tribal more or something and
challenged me to the ritual 1-1 combat. When inquiring about this the
tribal champion named Ku told us that ritual combat would be to the
death.

To the death? The warrior seemed to be quite confident with his ritual
weapon – patu a kind of a club that I had seen in use by the island folk
in other places as well. Not that he needed the weapon, his claws looked
like they could rip a man a part.

A pirate at the age of 53 you have learned to pick the fights you join –
even if some would call Muammar impetuous or worse but this did not look
like a fight he would pick. If you happen to be in a fair fight you did
not prepare well enough. There was no way out – we were in the middle of
jungle in a village of savage lizard men and the only “friendly”
contacts were not keen to use their influence to stop the fight – the
shamans of the villages were divided in their opinion of what to do with
us.

Muammar entered the ring of lizard folk who had gathered to watch the
ritual combat.

Damn my eyes – the lizardman is fast. In addition to being bigger and
stronger than Muammar. I had to ask the gods some luck to be faster than
him, it has been awhile since I had to do that. My only option is to be
faster and get him handled as he surely will get better of me. My remise
worked perfectly – rapier went in fast and I followed with main gauche
and pressed him severely – his thick skin proved to be tough to pierce.
I pushed him hard and pierced his lungs with the Attabian steel of my
rapier with a close to perfect hit that would skewer any human opponent, still he stayed in the game. I could have used impale but did not dare
to leave the rapier in – the blow might have been of lesser quality and
the damage when drawing the blade out might still be too little to drop
the brute and would take my rapier out of use for a precious time that I
knew I did not have.

The sun was starting to bother me who had always
been proud of my slight frame but the warrior seemed to enjoy the heat.
Feint, blow, parry – repeat and a repeat. I am a bit faster and must stay that way –
he is just a tad slower but can match me blow for blow. My spider silks protect a bit but are soaked with sweat already.
His skin seems to protect more as even when I hit he does not seem to be bothered.

Must have used all my luck and the fight was far from over.

I managed to make him slip with a feint to
knee and he rolled to ground but he was too slippery and strong to stay
there long. Again – and same thing. He got me, oh no he got me –
Sarnai does something – brute is distracted – back in the game. Damn my
eyes and let the brute rot in hell, I could not resist his blow to my
rapier arm and my rapier flew behind him – I was left with my main
gauche to take him down.

I knew that I did not have time and opportunity
to pick the weapon up before I could slow him down. So main gauche with
my left hand, press him, main gauche again – disarm. He was really good
with his ritual club and way too strong and I could not disarm him no
matter what I did.

Damn the sun, damn the heat – sweat everywhere, thank
the gods for giving me the discipline to keep the morning regime to
endure – damn the brute – he got a hit in -lucky it was a glancing blow – this is starting to look unwinnable. Overextend – ok, disarm fail
again. Starting to run out of options – damn the sun – the brute seems
to enjoy himself. He is down. Up again.

Desperate times call for desperate measures – main gauche just does not cut it – outmaneuvre him to
get to the rapier – no – bloody no – he hit me, but got my rapier while
fending him off with main gauche. Down on the ground – Layla shrieks,
the brute is distracted – have to get up – HAVE TO GET UP.  Damn the
sun. Up – rapier in – down he goes – he is up again.

Disarm – did he finally lose the patu. Rapier, main gauche – feint – he
is down. “SURRENDER”” – he does not. He tries to get up. I see an opening –
remise – feint, rapier in, all in, now, NOW – aim for chest – hope it reaches
the vitals, push the blade hard. He is down but breathes. I look at Ku –
the tribal champion – he implies I need to finish what was started. I do
what is required. The ground gets red… It is over.

There was a feast for the victor.

Comment

This was a very long 1-1 fight with 3 crits on the lizardmen side and 2 on Muammar’s (at least). There were also fumbles.

Both sides had 3 action points.

Muammar the pirate had 4 point armor for the head (a helmet) and 3 points to chest/abdomen. Rest where 2. Lizardman was 3 points everywhere. Muammar has Do or Die as the Combat trait with the Water Dancer combat style.

I knew I was very likely to die if I did not take the lizardman out very very quickly so used my first luck point to reroll my initiative as the lizardman was faster. The part when I knew that this was probably going to be the end of the career was when my choose location max damage to the lizardman chest did not take him out. After that it started to be a bit desperate.

Will need to look at additional tactics for long fights…

Mythras Skill Success Calculator has been updated

The skill success calculator can handle the math for augmenting skills, difficulty grades and reduction for over 100% skill opponents. It calculates the success, criticals and fumble chances and takes into account also things like when it is hopeless to roll.

It will give you an easy table to reference for each of the difficulty grades. Just enter skill, possible augmenting skill and possible reduction and press calculate

Easy calculation with even numbers
Protagonist has skill over 100
Opponent has skill of 117