What is Tortured Earth?
Tortured Earth is a class-less, level-less role playing game set in an apocalyptic future. The system is designed to allow the transition of characters among science fiction, fantasy and horror settings in a seamless manner without loss of skills, assigned points, or equipment. Without the restriction of class, players are free to create unique custom characters without overpowering or undermining the established story board.
What is a Tabletop RPG?
A tabletop role-playing game (or pen-and-paper role-playing game) is a game where players play a character in a story and 1 person is the Game Master that runs the world the player’s characters act in. Players determine the actions of their characters based on their characterization and the actions succeed or fail according to a set formal system of rules and guidelines with dice rolls. Within these rules, players have the freedom to improvise; their choices shape the direction and outcome of the game.
About Your Characters
In Tortured Earth, the system of creating your character is simple, flexible and most of all completely customizable. Normally players would be able to construct every aspect of their character, but for this convention demonstration you will be playing with pre built characters. The main core characteristics of your character are base off 7 Attributes (PM, PA, PE, PC, IQ, WP, PR). These numbers are used to define what your character is natural talents at as well as where their faults are.
Physical Might (PM)
This attribute describes the character’s ability to complete feats of physical strength. A character built to hit hard, lift heavy objects, or demonstrate quick bursts of strength (i.e., jumping) will have a high physical might. Most heavy weaponry uses PM to determine attack (ATK) value. PM can also assist DEF rolls versus certain types of magic attacks.
Physical Agility (PA)
This attribute portrays the nimbleness and deftness a character possesses with regards to fine motor control. A character built to be a quick aim, adept at picking a lock, or dodging an attack will have a high physical agility. Most firearms and some light melee weapons use PA to determine attack (ATK) value. PA is very important as a DEF attribute versus physical types of damage.
Physical Endurance (PE)
This attribute represents the physical toughness of a character. A character having a high physical endurance has higher hit points, a higher carrying capacity, and is able to use less widely weaponry. *For each point in PE, a character gains an additional 5 HP.
Perceptive Comprehension (PC)
This attribute represents how wel la character views their surroundings. It is the primary attribute in almost all Ranged and Targeted attack and many Guile skills
Intelligence Quotient (IQ)
This attribute represents how quickly the character can learn new concepts. This directly affects many magic and some psychic abilities. A few physical weapons and most magic spells rely on IQ to do increased damage.
This attribute represents how a character can adapt to change. This directly affects most psychic abilities along with some magic abilities. Psychics use WP in determining ATK and DMG. Those with high WP find it easier to resist telepathic attacks as well.
This attribute represents the strength of a character's personality or physical beauty. This directly affects communication as well as some psychic abilities. Many spells from the Spirit school of magic are directly impacted by the caster’s PR.
Each speed value represent the number of inches a NPC or PC may move utilizing 1 CP. Characters wishing to sprint may utilize 3 CP to move three times during their turn. They may choose to move only a fraction of their total move speed during 1 CP, attack using the next CP, and move again with the third CP.
Life Points (LP) refer to the character’s ability to withstand physical damage. Life points are derived from the physical attributes of the character: Physical Might, Physical Agility, and Physical Endurance.
(PM x 3) + (PA x 3) + (PE x 5) + Race Base = Total Life Points
Mental Points (MP) refers to the character’s ability to withstand mind altering damage. Mental points are derived from the mental attributes of the character: IQ, Will Power, and Presence.
(IQ x 3) + (WP x 5) + (PR x 3) + Race Base = Total Life Points
All Character and Creature can have a resistance to various types of damage. This reduction is applied after Damage is determined but before Status Effects are applied. A Status Effect cannot take effect unless enough Damage is applied to the Target.
Crushing - Hammers, Clubs, Anything hard and flat
Piercing - Swords, Arrows, Spears, Sharp pointy thingys
Slashing - Axes, Chainsaws, Things that rip and tear for $200 Alex.
Kinetic - Grenades, Psychic Blast, BOOM!
Acid - Corroding batteries, Nasty stuff
Electric - Shocking
Fire - Burning
Cold - Freezing
Vital - Healing Living, Hurting Undead
Necrotic - Healing Undead, Hurting Living
What your Character can do.
Placement of points is essential to character development. In Tortured Earth, weapons, magic, psychic, abhorrent traits, and character skills are treated equally in terms of advancement. Due to the level-less nature of the system, it is possible for a character to have advanced training in one skill and be deficient in another skill.
Tortured Earth uses a ranking system in which skill points determine the number of uses per day a character may draw upon a particular ability. As soon as a player places a skill point in a particular ability, that skill becomes Rank 1. Status effects are directly affected by the Rank multiplier. Damage is not directly increased through Rank advancement.
Should a character have an excessive number of skill points assigned to a particular ability, the player may ‘cash in’ or remove 5 skill points. This removal equates to an increase in the skill Rank by 1. Ex. Should a character have 12 skill points allocated to Guile: Converse. Five of the 12 may be removed, reducing the number of uses from 12 times per day to 7 times per day. However, each use now occurs at Rank 2. Now the player receives +2 when activating a Character Skill Check. This system of cashing points in to increase Rank is unique to Tortured Earth and is applied to all skills: Magic, Non-combative Skills, Psychic, and Weapons. The ranking process enables players to customize characters by advancing only those traits the player deems essential.
Freedom of Choice
In having the freedom to design characters in any manner possible, a trade must occur: incredibly high numbers of uses per day vs greater potency per use. As the solution is situational, the answer falls entirely to the player and how they wish to see their character develop.
In addition to Attacking, the following actions are available during combat encounters:
This occurs when two or more opponents position around a Target. The Opponent the Target last engaged in becomes the Primary Target and is considered facing this foe. All other Opponents gain a +1 to their attack roll. This is a static bonus and does not increase with Rank or Ability.
When an opponent deliberately moves within 1” of a character during a Retreat, a Free Attack is enabled. This attack consists of a basic attack and is viewed as reactionary to the opponent’s positioning.
During a character’s turn, a single, non-combative action may be completed without a CP expenditure. These include simple, quick actions: Opening an unstuck/unlocked door, shouting a command, non-combative or non-skill check ability, etc.
Players may use CP to move ½ speed from a point of combat without provoking a free attack from an adjacent enemy. This bonus is applied to each move action used to Withdraw.