Basic mechanics

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In MazeWorld, you are in control of your Player Character (PC) from the moment you begin your adventure until the very end; whatever that end may be. As a game focused on combat, fighting, and survival, you are responsible for every action necessary to keep your PC alive; fighting, using items, doing jobs, but also eating and drinking, resting, training, and if you have any, healing injuries and fixing problems.

This means that at any given moment, you have a certain range of actions and abilities at your disposal. Unless the story demands it or your character is no longer conscious, control of your character should never be taken away from you.

Often, you will need to roll the dice to resolve certain actions and determine whether you succeed or fail. As explained in the Basic concepts page, you will usually make use of d6s, d8s, and d100s, with the expectation that you might have to roll any and all kinds of dice at any moment.

In and out of combat

When playing MazeWorld, there are two major 'modes' of play; being out of combat (what is referred to as Normal mode) and being in combat (known as Combat mode). The actions available to you differ depending on whether or not you are in combat, though it is possible to shift in and out of combat in an instant.

Normal mode (out of combat) is the default mode of play. In this mode, the situation is assumed to be relatively safe and more relaxed, and there is generally no need to keep track of character positioning, time or turns passing, unless specific situations or conditions warrant the need to do so. Normal is the closest there is to freeform roleplaying, and greater leeway and flexibility should be granted to Game Masters (GMs) and players.

When in combat,certain actions become important: character and item positioning, turns passing, and who does what in which order. Each of these may have an influence on the outcome of the fight. All of the specifics to fighting can be found on the Combat mode page.


Declaring actions

Talking can be useful from time to time, but in order to make things happen, characters must take clearly declared actions.

Every action you wish your character to make must be declared. That means clearly telling the GM what you intend to do, with as many details as required. It is not strictly necessary to be always in-character when declaring actions, but it is considered good form to weave your intentions into your roleplaying, even if it's just a few words.

Depending on what actions you are declaring, the GM may ask you to roll dice, make choices, or confirm decisions; as necessary and when appropriate.

There are three kinds of actions in MazeWorld: Combat actions, Non-combat actions, and Free actions. Combat and Non-combat actions generally cost at least one turn to perform, whereas Free actions cost nothing to perform.

  • Combat actions are every type of action related to using a weapon or an offensive ability of some sort.
  • Non-combat actions are every type of action related to using any items or abilities that do not fall into the category of combat actions.
  • Free actions are relatively non-consequential actions which can be done freely and at no cost.

Examples:

  • Combat action example: Attacking an enemy ; Private Bowens intends to attack the giant ant by shooting it three times, in semi-auto, with her AK-101.
  • Non-combat action example: Using an item ; Johnny pulls out a syringe of morphine from his leg rig, and injecting it into his arm.
  • Free-action example: Talking ; Noriko screaming "I'm going to rip your eyeballs out and make you eat them!" at her opponents on the other side of the room.

When outside of combat, most of what your character will do are non-combat and free actions. Combat actions can, in certain circumstances, be performed outside of combat, but generally speaking, if you need to use a weapon of some sort, you're probably fighting or about to fight.

Time

"Time" redirects here. For an in-universe explanation on the way people in the Mazes keep track of periods of time, see: Calendar.

A typical MazeWorld session focuses on one or more player characters, living moment to moment, room to room, throughout their adventures. It is customary, but not strictly necessary, to keep track of the in-game clock, and give an idea of how many days the characters have survived. The exact time of the day is generally unimportant, as most shops and businesses in the Mazes are open 24/7. At the minimum, the GM should tell the players what the current time period of the day is, but it is generally not necessary (though possible, see advanced tip below) to keep track of exact hours and minutes.

Just like in the real world, one day is made up of 24 hours, one hour is 60 minutes, and one minute is 60 seconds. But since it is a world that is for the most part 'inside', inhabitants of the Mazes regard terms like "sunrise" and "sunset" as unusual and archaic.

Days are divided into four periods, as follows:

Hours Time period name
8 AM to 11:59 AM Morning
12:00 PM to 7:59 PM Day
8 PM to 11:59 PM Evening
12:00 AM to 7:59 AM Night

The start of the morning (8 AM) is called the daybreak, and the start of the evening (8 PM) is called the eventide. Certain places and businesses in the Mazes with concepts of a "day shift" and a "night shift" use these hours as points of reference for when these shifts begin and end; for example, if you're visiting the local diner at 2:30 in the afternoon, you're going to see the employees work the day shift, but if you come back later at 1 AM, you will see the night shift employees instead.

Advanced tip
Game Masters: If you really want to, and if your players have no issue with it, you can keep track of the clock in the game at a more accurate level than simply tracking the current time period, right down to the exact hours and minutes, using these pointers:

+5 minutes when entering a new UA room
+6 minutes per turn spent Waiting
+6 minutes per turn spent Resting


Daily Reset

The only important part of time is the amount of days that have passed in the game, and more specifically the moment at which the character enters into a new day. This point is known as the Daily Reset. Two important statistics, Nutrition and Hydration, rely on the Daily Reset for their significance. Every day, your character will lose a certain amount of nutrition and hydration, roughly corresponding to a day's worth of food and water. The exact amount of Nutrition and Hydration lost depends on two factors: your character's Base Limb Health value and constitution.

The daily reset occurs at midnight, at the start of the Night period.

The exact amount of nutrition and hydration lost every day is calculated as follows:

  • Nutrition lost on daily reset = 30 x Base Limb Health value
  • Hydration lost on daily reset = 10 x Base Limb Health value
    • If your character's constitution is Athletic, multiply both values by 1.25. If Muscular, multiply both values by 1.5.

Turns

"Turn" and "Turns" redirect here.

The turn is the smallest individual unit of time. Although it corresponds to roughly five or six seconds, turns are intended to be abstract short moments. It is highly recommended not to consider turns to have any relevance to the clock, even if you're choosing to track time down to the individual minutes.

Most actions cost one or several turns to complete, and are very important to Combat mode, but a little less important outside of combat.

Generally speaking, unless the player characters are in combat, or there is some other situation during which the counting of turns would become important, it's not strictly necessary to count down the exact amount of turns that would pass for completing an action. The significance of turns depends on how much changes over each turn, particularly if any effects that work over time are active; virtually all such effects work on a per-turn basis, and all temporary effects last an amount of time expressed in turns.

  • Example: After having successfully eliminated a nasty creature, Sarah notices she sustained a few Wounds during the fight, and is now bleeding. In order to access the bandages inside of her backpack, Sarah needs to spend a turn to drop her backpack on the ground and make the items accessible. Normally, this would be trivial, but every turn Sarah spends with at least one wound, means she is losing Blood. It will require one turn to drop the backpack, and one turn for every bandage required (one per Wound) in order for her to stop bleeding. Hopefully she is able to patch herself up before all of her red fluids are on the floor...


Movement and traveling

The importance of your character's position in the world (and in turn, what you are allowed to do to move your character) depends on whether or not you are in combat, and on whether you are inside the Uncivilized Area or a Civilized Area. This section will discuss what you can do outside of combat. For movement when in combat, see Combat mode.

Civilized Areas

When outside of combat and in a Civilized area such as a town, or an intersection, you can travel to nearly any specific room, street, shop, business, or point of interest, simply by declaring an intent to travel to that location, so long as you have access to it. Towns and intersections generally have maps listing the places of interest available, and the preferred method of declaring movement is to simply say something along the lines of, "I'm going to the gun shop" or "Next, I'm going to visit the hospital".

You can specify a particular room or area if you know exactly where you're going. You can also request to the GM your precise location, or the current town or intersection map, whenever you desire.

In order to leave a Civilized Area, your character must be at a location where it is possible to transition into the UA.

  • Towns have a room called the Gap corridor, which represents the very edge of the town. This is where you can choose your next destination. You can only travel to a town or an intersection that is linked to the current town, though you can plot a specific itinerary if you so desire.
  • Intersections do not have gap corridors. Instead, as intersections are plus sign-shaped (+), 2 to 4 of its outermost rooms may be connected to the UA, each corresponding to a single destination.

Uncivilized Area

When in the UA, your character will be traveling through a series of randomly generated rooms, going from a starting point to a destination of your choosing, and reaching the next destination only after a set amount of UA rooms have been passed.

When you are in a Civilized Area and ready to transition into the UA, your GM will give you the available destinations, and ask you to choose where you intend to go (unless there is only one available destination, of course).

Once you have selected your destination, you will be asked to pick a traveling style. There are four traveling styles: Fast, Safe, Deep, and Skip. Your chosen style will influence the amount of UA rooms you need to go through to reach the next destination, and the chances of finding loot, monsters, and special areas. Skip is special - it is essentially fast travel. When Skip traveling, your character will travel an amount of rooms equivalent to a Safe travel, but will encounter zero enemies and zero items, essentially trading dangers and loot for saving time and convenience.

  • NOTE: Skip traveling may not always be possible, particularly during certain jobs. The GM can also disallow Skip traveling for any reason they deem necessary.

When traveling in the UA, the three important counters are the amount of UA rooms passed, the amount of UA rooms required to reach the next destination, and what your current destination is. You can also choose to reverse course and begin traveling back to your original starting point; at which point the amount of UA rooms already passed becomes your amount of rooms to pass to reach the next destination. Note that if you have begun reversing course, you shouldn't reverse back again; instead, return to your original starting point, and select a new destination.

Whenever you are ready to move into a new UA room, such as when you are finished visiting, looting, or fighting in the current room, you may "request the next rooms" or "the next doors" to the GM, who will proceed to randomly generate three rooms, and if applicable, extra possibilities. The description of each room follows the same nomenclature:

  • (Left, Front or Right), (If applicable: Shortcut or Detour value) (Roomstyle), (Decay level), (Code)
    • Left, Front or Right is flavor, and simply represents your first, second, and third choice.
    • Shortcut or Detour value indicates the amount of UA rooms you will lose or gain if you take this door. Usually written Shortcut -x or Detour +x, where x represents the amount of rooms skipped (Shortcuts) or gained (Detours).
      • Shortcuts decrease the amount of UA rooms needed to reach the next destination, and should be used to shorten the trip.
      • Detours increase the amount of UA rooms needed to reach the next destination, and should be used if you want to look for more loot (or creatures to fight).
    • Roomstyle is simply the type and style of room that is ahead. The roomstyle determines the presence and type of furniture inside.
    • Decay level indicates the age, level of decay, and damage that the room has sustained over time. Low decay levels generally increase the chances of finding extra loot. High decay levels generally increase the chances of finding mushrooms.
    • The Code is either a letter or a number written between parentheses:
      • If the code is a number, it is a number representing the room's decay level. Decay level numbers range from 0 to 5.
      • If the code is a letter, it may either be (S) for Shortcut, or (D) for Detour. In both cases, the shortcut or detour will be available in the next room, at the front door.
Decay level Code Chances of finding extra loot Chances of finding mushrooms
Deserted (0) 75% 0%
Abandoned (1) 25% 0%
Dark (2) 50% 50%
Disaffected (3) 10% 0%
Forsaken (4) 5% 15%
Overgrown (5) 5% 35%
  • In a room with a decay level of Dark, the lights are broken, plunging the room in total darkness.
  • In rooms with a decay level of at least 2, all electrically-powered furniture (televisions, radios...) will be non-functional.

Example: [Next rooms] Left: Empty bar, abandoned (1) // Front: (Shortcut -2) Empty workshop, disaffected (3) // Right: Featureless room (D)

  • The left door leads to an abandoned empty bar, the front door leads to a disaffected empty workshop, and the right door leads to a featureless room with a detour inside.
  • Taking the front door would make the player character go through a shortcut, and remove 2 rooms on the amount needed to reach the next destination.
  • Taking the right door would not make the player go through a detour, but it would lead to a room where the front door is a detour.

In short

When transitioning from CA to UA, the process is as follows:

  • Select destination
  • Select traveling style
  • Pick your first door
  • Enter your first UA room

When traveling in the UA:

  • Enter UA room
  • Deal with any items, furniture, creatures, or happenstances as you need
  • Request the next doors
  • Pick your next door
  • Enter next room

Rinse and repeat until you reach the last UA room, in which case, all of the next doors will lead to your destination.