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"Incorporating Possibile Mind-Altered Characters In Games?" Topic

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1,127 hits since 17 Apr 2017
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Comments or corrections?

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP17 Apr 2017 10:28 p.m. PST

What if your characters are bitten with a rabies-like virus? Or perhaps something that makes them more docile? Or maybe it's from spores from Triffids? Or suddenly afflicted by programming from brainwashing years earlier?Or reacting to an implant from Martians or Greys?

Or perhaps a chemical or biological agent that acts the way toxoplasmosis works on rats, making them walk right up to the predator to be eaten.


Or the way the same organism works on humans, making them less inhibited, less rational and more unpredictable, erratic and prone to risky behavior. And to become blind servants of cats:



How do you incorporate the gradual change(s) in your characters?
What if contamination takes place unnoticed by the character or those nearby?

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Agent Smith Inactive Member17 Apr 2017 11:50 p.m. PST

The blind servants of cats thing happened centuries ago!


Personal logo Coyotepunc and Hatshepsuut Supporting Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 1:51 a.m. PST

I think that in the context of a wargame, your question really has multiple answers deoending on how you are playing. It probably only becomes relevant in a small-scale skirmish campaign like Necromunda, where every model is a character and shows progress from one game to the next.

Or in a RPG.

rvandusen Supporting Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 3:00 a.m. PST

You could do all kinds of interesting things with a rage virus or similar mind-altering illness.

Maybe at first the infected character will start to feel "not him/her self." This might mean the character can no longer fast move.

After a while cognitive ability and senses will start to go. The character might have a problem hitting targets or making spotting checks. This can be gradual, say a small but increasing negative modifier per turn (or day if in a campaign).

The final stage might see the infected player having to roll a rage test any time there is human interaction. Once this threshold is reached the character is now an NPC and will attack anyone.

Grelber18 Apr 2017 5:01 a.m. PST

Roll to see who gets to control the figure: you or your opponent. To show progression, change the odds each turn, making it less likely for the owning player to control the figure.


haywire Supporting Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 7:15 a.m. PST

Roll to see who gets to control the figure: you or your opponent. To show progression, change the odds each turn, making it less likely for the owning player to control the figure.

I would add a "random" table as well.

1-2 owner controls
2-4 opponent controls
3-6 random

Character moves in a scatter direction 2D6", shoots nearest miniature no matter what side. If its a game with a "one use attack power" roll a d6, on a 1 the miniature uses its power.

haywire Supporting Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 7:20 a.m. PST

Actually, I was thinking of something similar after watching 30 days of night if someone fails a "scare" check.

run away in random direction
run away in direction from that causing fear
shoot wildly
fall to the ground weeping
scream loudly attracting all zombies/vampires

just need to make a table

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 10:47 a.m. PST


But you would have to make it gradual in some way, right? At least until the character falls completely under the influence of the enemy.


Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 12:52 p.m. PST
Zephyr118 Apr 2017 2:42 p.m. PST

Chart of random effects/behavior (going from less to more), roll each turn but use cumulative +X modifiers to each new roll (to represent increasing effects/infection.) That way you go from initially mild effects to horrifically terminal.

Example (using a 3D6 chart): from 1 to 3 = lose actions, 4-7 = modifiers to actions, 8-17 = various actions figure must perform, 18 = explode into bloody chunks of flesh

So, you might stave off the infection for a while with (lucky) low rolls, but with the modifier it could turn instantly boom-splat (or whatever behavior you are modelling… ;-)

Lion in the Stars19 Apr 2017 3:22 a.m. PST

The Sepsitor weapon in Infinity is kinda like that, except it affects the victim instantly. Yeah, the vic gets a save against it, but that's it. Fail the save and you become part of the Combined Army immediately. The model is limited to being in a separate combat group, so you can't spend but the one order that model generates on it. Even if you Sepsitorize multiple models, each one stays in a separate combat group.

zoneofcontrol19 Apr 2017 5:45 a.m. PST

The first minis wargame rules I ever bought and played was Beer & Pretzels Skirmish (BAPS). The turn sequence includes using a leader's command points to issue tasks for each turn. When a leader runs out of leader points, his remaining men roll for random actions off of a chart. One result is Heroic Actions and includes a Berserk Action result.

You could incorporate something like this for your "infected" figure. Just increase the odds of obtaining a "berserk" result as time moves along.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP19 Apr 2017 9:58 a.m. PST


Hmm. Now that's definitely interesting. Though, as a corollary, if you were to use that premise, then as the mission progresses successfully, there should be some mechanism for gaining leadership points along the way.


zoneofcontrol19 Apr 2017 2:16 p.m. PST

A little more detail: In BAPS, a leader has a set number for his leader points/rating. Each turn you roll a d4 and add the result to his leader rating for his total number of points for that turn. To answer your question above, you could change the die as the game or campaign moves along. Go from d4 to d6 to d8, etc. (Or, say d4 +1, d4 +2, etc.) If those numbers are too drastic of a change, you could have the leader gain or lose dice steps as a result of good or bad morale, changes in momentum or achieved goals.

I really like BAPS because of this type of thinking that went into the game. Buck Surdu does a really good job with his rules development. He posts here often so you could try reaching out to him if so inclined.

Elenderil20 Apr 2017 5:45 a.m. PST

The other point in an RPG game is that the effect shouldn't be known to the other players. The umpire might give the effected character a different set of victory conditions known only to that player. Those could keep changing after a random number of turns to reflect the altering mental state of the character.

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP21 Apr 2017 9:21 a.m. PST

Slowly alter the minds of your players as you go ^,^

warren bruhn Inactive Member23 Apr 2017 10:54 a.m. PST

Pulp Alley has a Horror deck that includes mind altering effects.

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