Friday, April 11, 2014

An A1V type star....

An A1V type star orbited by a stellar remnant walks into a bar.
Bartender asks, "Why so sirius, eh ?"

Thank you, thank you !  I'm here all week, tip your waitresses, they're great

Friday, March 7, 2014

Now that I am, how do I have? (or, Stuff) <- More rules.

Now that I am, how do I have? (or, Stuff)

Oh Yeah.  Throw in a mask, and I'll drive it off the lot !

If you need something that isn’t permanently linked to your character, you need to roll enough successes, which vary by the value & scarcity.  The career you use is citizen, unless your adventuring career would be more appropriate. As a guide, your social class is defined by your CITIZEN career.

Night Train Rockafeller,
Millionaire Hobo
(rejected player character)

Class                                         CITIZEN
·        RICH                                   5
·        UPPER                                 4
·        WORKING                             3
·        POOR                                   2
·        BUM                                     1
·        DESTITUTE                         0


Forobtaining  stuff, determine how many successes it costs from the table below:
·        If your CITIZEN is greater, you have it (until it gets blown up) !
·        If your CITIZEN is equal, you can be assumed to be renting it, but have to make a single success citizen roll each adventure to keep it.  If it is blown up, you now have a new hobby –paying it off !
Ha !  Thought you were safe up here !
Luckily I have

·        Otherwise, roll the above number of dice, adding the citizen rating to each.  Yes, the rich can have it all.   As ever, each 7+ is a success.  If you have enough successes, you have it till you don’t

You can only roll if it is possible to succeed.  However,  if the item requires more successes than possible, a player can gain one free success before rolling by reducing your Citizen by one . Two successes requires lowering it by  TWO levels. OUCH ! If you get it, you lose it between adventures, but regain your CITIZEN points.  

While lots of common stuff is bought using your CITIZEN skill, career specific stuff can be different.  Any time you need to roll for an item, instead of your CITIZEN, you can use an appropriate CAREER . The adds are still the citizen rating, but the number of dice rolled is determined by the career.  Thus, a BUM (1) would normally  be unable to obtain a pistol (cost 2) as he can only roll one dice at +1 (CITIZEN dice +CITIZEN) ; however, an ex Army (3) BUM rolls three dice for +1 (ARMY dice +CITIZEN).  Two successes and hes a Hobo with a pistol !

NOTE that in a major pinch, you can reduce the career you substitute as if it was CITIZEN.

If you have NATURE instead of CITIZEN, your effective CITIZEN is BUM.  Use careers where you can, Tarzan.   In his case “RICH BASTARD HEIR” turned out to be his career.

Cost of stuff with some examples, or, everything has its price, sweetheart !

NOTE: that Items rated at 6+ require either being WEALTHY, or reducing you CITIZEN or CAREER, or being an NPC villan or patron, who can have a citizen higher than 5. Characters, never.
Free/dumpster divings      0             Rags. Old butts.  Ketchup and chickenbone soup. Squirrel.  Shank. Club. Beano.
Cheap/Ubiquitous               1            Old clothing, gum, shiv, smokes, Poison Liquor. flop
Inexpensive/common           2            Zip gun, , Cheap Booze, Old Car. hardscrabble, apartment
Affordable/uncommon         3            Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun Sm House, Car,  good stuff Booze, farm    
costly/Unusual                    4            Lg House, fancier car, sm airplane,country estate Military arms (BAR, Grenade) top                                                               shelf Booze:
Luxury/uncommon               5            Mansion,Yacht, fighter, race car, lab, big/new plane, tank, plantation,  best Booze
Ruinous/Rare                      6            Secret base, rocket, flying yacht/HQ
Priceless/Unique               7+           Hope Diamond, The Mona Lisa, Battle cruiser, Spy army

Examples of transport:  match with value (hints: one is 0, one is 6)


Monday, March 3, 2014

Some FAQqy stuff for BAGS I left out, or possibly have been written since

Daring dudes doing stuff doingly !
What all this should look like.
The Century Goose destroys the KMS Death Sun with a lucky shot (tm)
The earlier post jumped right into character generation.  here are the two semi-mandatory "how to roleplay" and quickstart parts.
How do I play this?  What do I do ? Where is My Butt?  I’ve used both hands and I can’t find it !!  
 Okay, here is the topline: You pretend to be a someone else having a bad day, otherwise called a HERO having an ADVENTURE. 

·        Since adults argue even more than five year olds playing cowboy (got ya !  Nuh UH!) we have numbers and rules to make decisions easy and (sorta) impartial. 

·        To do stuff you roll dice to see if what you want to do works, and how well.  The better you are at stuff, the more dice and higher numbers you generate –which is good, because harder stuff needs bigger results.

·        When you screw up, bad things can happen, like when you fail to jump a chasm (you fall to your doom), or fail to not be punched (you get ouched).  In which case, since no one here is very creative, usually this means you get hurt or lose cool stuff. Sometimes you die.  Again, we have numbers and rolls to determine when or if this happens (see: playing cowboys).

·        Players work together , dealing with a scenario designed and run by a referee.  Everyone says it isn’t player vs GM, but we all know the truth after our first game.

·        If you make a point of doing well, you can get better at what you do, or learn new things. Plus, you get to keep cool stuff, especially when the bad guys “don’t need it any more”.

·        Got all that ?

How do I know what to roll ?
Here is the quickstart version for those too excited to actually read the rulebook before play; nowadays, this is invariably described as the universal resolution mechanic, which, as far as I’m concerned, illustrates much that is wrong with RPG design these days (future rants on this topic will include the terms “engine”, edition versioning, rules “patches”, GNS (?) theory, “standard modifier”, “immersive fiction”, fiction as example”, "cultural models", "quickstart" and probably more….)

·        So, to do stuff, you roll some six-sided dice, add modifiers to each dice, and determine how many get a 7+. These are successes. Then add automatic successes for the final total.

·        The number of dice you roll is 1 + the career relevant to what you are doing.  Basically each career is rated from 0-5 indicating how long you have been doing that, or how good you are. 

If you have no relevant career, and you cannot whine beg and rationalize a way to use one that you do have, you roll only the one dice. Plus, you should be ashamed to call yourself a gamer.

·        The modifiers to each dice are whatever stat is relevant to the task.  Again, they are rated from 0-5, strictly indicating how good you are at that kind of task.  Note that having a stat at 0 = kinda screwed

·        Roll your career dice, add your stat to each one.  All rolls that get a 7+ are a success.
·        Harder things need more successes, extra successes mean you succeed elegantly.
·        Finally, if you have a relevant advantage, and an advantage is anything from a prop to an amazing physical ability, you get a free success.  Multiple advantages can give you multiple extra successes. Yay team !

So, easy tasks should either only require one success, or be a gimmie. A skilled task (one an unskilled character couldn’t be able to do) should require 2, 3 or 4. Note that with a six dice max roll, hitting a 4+ for successes pretty much requires having some free successes from advantages. Plus, there are mechanisms to burn GRIT to get better results. Read on. Or play. 


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

On random character generation

On random character generation

I like it random*.  I like being surprised by what the numbers mean –or finding out how to make sense of them. 
* shut up.

I also like point buy systems – I like being able to hit the ground with the character I feel like playing.

At one end we have the roll 3d6 in order & suck it up (OD&D)
On the other we have complete customization down to the last .1%; nothing is randomized (Champions/TFT, GURPS).

I've seen it argued that Random vs allocation systems are at the heart of what makes one a true roleplayer, and worthwhile and self assured person; It works both ways, too: random players are innumerate boobs role who play to play a loser, allocation players are "compensationg for personal powerlessness".
For me, the problem is thatwhile I like playing what i am handed,  I cannot help but be a munchkin, given the chance. , while I love getting to play exactly the character I want, I know myself.  I can’t help but look at allocating numbers as an optimization problem.
All the supervised generation characters tend to revert to the basic type I like to play –all combat guys end up as Thrudd bigaxemann , the VERY strong of the strong hills of strongaria  ; all wizards are Bored-Flak the pyromaniac genius, living platoon support weapon; all thieves as Batman.  Period.
Also, it doesn’t have to be numerical optimization per se: I had to have a GM limit my character choices in a 3.5 game to only base classes and feats because I kept locking up with options, and I could never quite finish the damn character. 

So, I tend to want to design games with random generation; but, with rules lite gaming (which I prefer) there is a stats problem I’ve never seen mentioned:
 if you only have two or three stats, it is very easy to get screwed by one low probability roll;
and the likelihood of getting a low and a high to balance out are not excellent with three possibilities.  And yes, I know one can get gifted by a single outlier roll which is good –or even two.  But, one, no one complains about that, and two, it can screw the other players in terms of fun or participation  if one guy can handle all the mental tasks.  But the real problem that messes with both is the character who cannot function.  So that’s what we worry about, essentially falling off the left side of the bell curve, which for only a few rolls is surprisingly steep.

Less stats is always at the heart of Lite RPG design, but more stats at least means more hope of an acceptable distribution.  So rules lite typically are point buy/allocation systems, with or without numbers. Let’s call them Supervised.  And, to even things out, we could call the random ones Stochastic, but that is pretentiousness of a level barely tolerable after using “Supervised” so let’s stick to calling it  Random.

The first version of BAGS used a pair of D6 to generate 0-5, skewed ((roll 2 d6, subtract the high from the low.  Most frequent roll is a 1 with 5 being least frequent (1/36).  Good, right ?  Nope.  At least one character could not roll above a 1, and indeed had a 0,1,0 character.  With the original BAGS rules, that meant that for any action or interaction test, he needed a 6 to succeed. Hes a good roleplayer, so he sucked it up and played thru until I changed to 7+ for success –then he complained.  At which point, the party (and me) realized that despite his best efforts, he couldn’t do jack , so any situation which was complicated by more of the players failing a roll pretty much was always the case. 

But crap.  If I give players 5 points, some dork invariably goes for 0,0,5.  If I require at least a 1, the number of different characters is vastly reduced.  More than 5 means you need to limit the max, so basically all you get is Mr average, and miss onestat wonder.  If I change the value of a 0, whatever number it becomes is going to be the most frequent one, and there is no granularity for low stats. 

IIRC, I wussed by allowing players to pick a profile instead of rolling.  Which is okay, but balance in small numbers of permutations equals (for me) boredom.

Okay, here is my new thought.

Mongoose traveller (see, a motion to discuss traveller is always in order) originally included ironman rules.  This harked back to the old “you can die in chargen” rules for Traveller classic/original.  Normally,  in MGT, a failed survival roll left your character alive, but physically messed up –missing an arm, one stat massively reduced, permanent high tech tattoo of LOSER or THE THIRD IMPERIUM SUCKS or ALL SPACE MARINES ARE FILTHY COWARDS on your forehead kind of thing. In the draft of MGT, you could opt to have survival rolls kill your character, and in exchange you got some kind of a reward.

I think it was essentially a level of Ironman per term you rolled for, and in play, you could always use your ironman skill instead of any other skill. Or maybe it was a number of rerolls.  Whatever, it got left out of the final version (boo hiss) because I think the stodgyest members hated it worse than death because it made no sense.  Or was unrealistic, scientifically.  (As decreed by a which  qualified him to have authoritative say on social issues, probability and trade economics, as well as play balance.  )

Anyway, rant over, the point is that it allowed you to be more random and get rewarded, just like one gets a reward for supervised chargen.  Which I like.

So, guess what is next up on BAGS revision planning ?  This:  for each stat you roll randomly, you get a free point of GRIT.  

Wasn’t that a lot to say to justify a simple design choice ?

Yep.  It was.

Friday, February 21, 2014

design factoid: humans do not intuit probabilities or statistics very well at all ; no math version

We see and choose based on perceived and thus not quantified extremes, not the highest probability; in other words, what we want, or what we fear has a BIG influence on how we think about chance.  Thus, State lotteries, thus, too, much superstitious behavior; also, much criticism of game design (see, actual relevance !).

Normally this works well enough, since the universe of avoiding cave bears and such is far from perfectly random and probabilistic, and there is a big bias represented by getting it wrong(eaten) simply based on choosing the average return. So we maximize the best outcomes, and avoid the worst, regardless of likelihood.  But, when it is highly probabilistic, and we don’t crunch the actual numbers, this don't work so good.  

The left side of the probability distribution for most of Human history
 Thus, looking at a probability tree (such as  in Traveller chargen), and deciding “Yuck, chances are I’ll get a one skill wonder or die before I play” Is usually waaaaay wrong.  *
Bottom line: it isn’t rocket science, but it isn’t as easy as speaking. It’s more like reading.   Barring accident or mutation, everybody learns to speak eventually, just by virtue of hardwiring; reading takes work.  But almost anyone can get there.  Rocket science, apparently not so easy, given how often Rocket scientists incinerate themselves and the local area code.

So, let’s look at Traveller more (any excuse will do):  original traveller handled Random/allocated chargen on a direct and a meta level.  Mostly random, but with a big dollop of allocation at a leverage point. Your stats were random, and your character history was dice ruled after you pick the career you are going to play.   And that choice was absolutely critical – most stat profiles could find a good fit in a couple of careers, so you have some choice –however, a bad fit made it very unlikely that you would have a successful resolution before you started play. 
Originally, this meant that you either “mustered out” (were fired) early, with few skills and benefits, or Died.  After the first edition, the vast beeping and squeeking about dying before play became so loud that even without the internet opinion amplipolarizer, that got changed to “fired with consequences” .  But still.   
If you’ve actually sat down and generated tons of Classic style characters (LBB1-3 + COTI for those who know) you find out that, yes indeed, choosing a good match for career and stats does give you a fairly good range of options, and boosts your survival (or non-termination with prejudice) significantly.  And, well, Scouts always die.  But that is on the label.
So, while it looks insanely stochastic (see! real technical jargon) it isn’t even close to as random as the armchair Pseudotravellers (those who only read or skim  the rules before posting and/ or making up their mind)  would have you believe.
This relates to the next topic: random vs purchase chargen design in rules lite systems (like, say, BAGS)
*For instance, did you know that by fiddling with the reenlistment roll typically to make it easier, one can actually increase your likelihood of dying ? You can, trust me –and there is a sweet spot that optimizes the two positive outcomes (survival and retention) . Interestingly, the tables are often already there.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Rules development interlude

Some thoughts on combat:

Thought one:  It’s been done to death at almost every level of granularity possible.
Thought Two: It’s the place where RPGs often dive into complexity of the most baroque kinds imaginable
Thought Three:  Rock paper scissors, while the simplest and most lite resolution possible lacks a certain amount of flavor.

So, the koan for RPG combat is this: what is not a shameless ripoff, has the same  level of granularity, complexity and crunch as the rest of the system, and is fun and flavorful.  Answer:  Very little.

So, rather than just plug in a simple Roll initiative, To hit , Damage by Weapon, Save As Needed, Next round -  type system  (which you’ll probably do anyway), I hoped to do something that addressed each of the points; and not test it.  I mean, come on, this is a gaming blog, right ?

Keep in mind that part of the motivation for this system is good old “lets try something different for a change ” .  So, that’s the answer when the inevitable question “why did you do this differently than usual ? ”  is asked.

So, thusly.

First up, does the combat system have to use the same mechanic as the task system ? 

  In fact, no it doesn’t, and in fact probably shouldn’t.  Tasks are about skills, and knowledge or athletic training and planning.  Combat is and trying not to get killed whilst doing the same.   Most skill use involves concentration, thought and planning; combat is about reacting in “panic hindbrain adrenaline reflex mode” and wetting yourself.  

That said, they should be expected to overlap, some… but the main point is this:  use of a rifle at a range, or a foil in a contest, or a punch in a boxing match is different than what you do when there is somebody firing back and trying to kill or maim you for real, and probably should use a different skill at the very least.

So, as a broad generalization, I’d like a combat system to use two different resolution systems to reflect this.  However, I’m not in love with different dice rolling procedures or tables just for the sake of adding flavor.  So I’ll start off with the following base mechanics:
·        All actions are either combat or normal.  Normal resolution emphasizes what you know and are capable of when no one is trying to kill you ; , and combat resolution is when someone is.    
·        You use different skills when in combat, even if you are using the same tools to do the same things.
·        For BAGS, use very broad categories wherever possible.

So:  Combat skills are used to resolve an attack when in combat.  Combat skills are mostly a measure of how well you keep it cool in a given type of combat; weapons limit range and modify damage, but do not modify the chance to hit when in combat. 

Combat skills are based around four basic types of combat, which consider range, and type of action required.
Typical weapon
Wrasslin and rolling
Forehead, teeth
Fist City
 Arms reach
(Hand to hand)
Fist, fungo bat
  Horseshoes and Handgrenades
  As far as you can throw
T (Throwing)
Rock, football
  Sling Lead
  About 100 yds
S (shooting)
  Shooting in a firefight
Any firearm
  Country mile.
  Anything more 
  Shooting at range
  Mortar, machine gun
* Mandatory Obsessive Range Abbreviation

So, in combat at range T, your H&H skill is used, regardless of what you are trying to throw (rock, empty pistol, Native Javelin).
Similarly, when you are holding a rifle, but are in combat at H range (hand to hand) you don’t use your rifle skill but rather your Fist City skill.  If it isn’t a combat situation, such as an assassination at close range (a rifle ?  come on…but still) use your rifle skill.  But…the moment someone is tryoing to kill you back you use the combat skill.

So, some weapons have ammo –when used at various ranges they use up ammo.  These are a function of the weapon.  If a weapon is at a range it cannot use its ammo, or does not have ammo, it, itself may be used as ammo –once.

Weapon effects:
Weapons modify two things: damage, and what ranges can they be used.
·        Damage: The number of hits that a weapon does when you succeed in a combat skill roll (or, a weapon skill roll when not in combat). Some do more, some do less.
·        Range: At what ranges it is effective, limited or not allowed
More to come, especially as it becomes obvious that BAGS has a VERY rudimentry combat system, thus far.





Sunday, February 16, 2014

more pulpy goodness; now with actual RULES !

Actual rules: Creating a character
Characters have GRIT plus three stats; some Careers (loosely defined) and Advantages.
·       GRIT is about not getting kill-hammered. Grit keeps you alive and in the fight. Try GRIT today !  Keep some GRIT at hand for whatever !
·       The three stats are Action, Wit, and Interaction. They define how well a player does stuff, not physical ratings. 
·       Careers define what a player’s skillsets are.  Note that while these are freeform, they should be fairly broad; specific skills should be treated as advantages.
o    Everyone has the career of CITIZEN.  This covers all the normal stuff you need to do to get by in civilized society: drive cars, cook, dress yourselves, have a mundane job.  The higher, the more you are integrated and advantaged in society. Which brings us to point 2:
o    Citizen determines your access to resources. Plus, in theory, whether you come in the front or back door, and if you need to use the third bathroom. 
·       ADVANTAGES are unique attributes of a character that aren’t career based –such as great strength, lighting fast, dead shot. These come into play if the action is appropriate to that advantage. If so, the roll is resolved with one additional success per advantage (explained later).  Note that advantages are cumulative, and stack.  Having an advantage multiple times gets the bonus for each.
Dude, where’s my Dex ?
Don’t have it. For physical ratings (such as the classics STR, DEX, INT)  the assumption is that the player is at least average, and only extraordinary levels need to be noted,  and are represented as advantages.  So stop whining that this is a statless story game.  It isn’t.
You have three stats: ACTION, WIT AND INTERACTION. 
·       Stats are rated from 0 to 5.
·       Average is 2, impaired is 1, and 0 means you are unable to use that stat; this is usually bad.
o    For those who care, a two covers 1 Standard Deviation (SD) on each side of the mean, or about 68% of the population. A one is anything more than 1 SD below the mean; the bottom 16% of the population (about 1 In 6). A three is from 1 to 2 SD greater than the mean, which suggests that you are better than about 2.3% of the population for that stat. A four is from 2 to 3 SD which means you are in the top 0.14%.  A  five is > 4 SD, or  the top 0.003 %.
·       Generate the stats by either
o    Rolling Hd-Ld, and making any zero a two.
o    Choose a basic hero profile:  3-3-2, 4-2-2, 5-2-1 ; assign numbers to the stats as you wish.
o    Most grown adults are at best 3-2-2 (one stat well above average).  Many will be a 2-2-2 or 2-2-1, Some will be 2-1-1 (teenagers or aged) or 1-1-1 (child, very old).  Don’t worry too much about them, pay attention to that medium Dinosaur right there, man ! (A7, W0, I1, G3).

You also have GRIT:  Grit starts at 5 but can be reduced to buy extra stat points, career points  or advantages. Note to Minimaxers: Grit keeps you alive, so be careful about spending it.
Using GRIT. 
If you must absolutely must succeed, you can trade a GRIT off for a free success after you roll.  This GRIT cannot be recovered during the current adventure. 
·       Also, you can push any successful task roll (not resource rolls, though) beforehand by declaring your intention and then making a GRIT roll – if you succeed, you gain an extra success, if you fail, you lose a success from your final total. Sure, you can mix and match these, as long as you always note the before and after roll state.
·       You can always trade a GRIT in before an adventure to gain an advantage for that adventure.  At the end of the adventure, lose the skill and regain the GRIT.
Recovering GRIT. 
All GRIT points lost are recovered at the end of the adventure or serial. 
·       During an adventure, Grit lost as damage recovers 1 point any time you heal a level. 
·       Note: you cannot recover to a GRIT higher than you started the adventure with.
Increasing GRIT:
After the adventure, all should get one point of GRIT.  Success may justify more. Excellent play can get a specific player a point.  Epic level play can get an immediate point.  
·       GRIT cannot exceed 5 when play starts.
·       Excess GRIT points above 5 must be spent before play starts or saved in the GRIT bank 401k (and are unusable during the adventure) .
·       GRIT points may be spent between adventures or serials to gain an advantage or a career dice. One GRIT adds one dice to a career,except for CITIZEN (or NATURE) Existing careers of advantages may only be increased by one between adventures. No more than one dice can be added to careers, or one increase to an advantage.  Any number of new advantages or careers may be added at value 1, but not increased until after the next adventure. 
·       Between Adventures, one designate a resource with value no more than one higher than CITIZEN, and spend a GRIT to receive it.  This stays until lost due to game activity, but does not count as  being linked like a GIZMO.
·       GRIT points may be spent to increase a stat other than GRIT, or CITIZEN or NATURE: the cost is the new value.

Hit Points ?
·       None.  Just health in one of five states: FINE, HURT, INJURED, WOUNDED, OUT
·       Start at FINE.  Try not to get hurt. See the Punches and Perils section for details

The main things that drive your adventurer is their career, The longer you’ve been in it, or the better you are at it, the more dice you will roll when doing stuff related to that stat. Typically they should be about this level of detail and specificity of the old childrens’ skipping rhyme: Tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor, Doctor lawyer, Indian chief (etc.)
·       For 193nazi pulp, we have: Soldier, Drifter, Pilot, Trader/ Rich man, Newsman, Daredevil  Thief/ Doctor, Lawman, Engineer, Chief
·       Notes:  for Doctor, specify MEDICINE, SCIENCE or PROFESSOR
·       Chief is exactly what it suggests.  You spent time as a native or otherwise uncivilized leader of other savages. 
·       Now divide up six points between them – max four, min one (no 0 point careers to take advantage of the always roll 1d6 roll, you frikkin’ munchkin). You can have as many (or as few as you want, as long as you allocate a point.
·       Everybody has an additional skill: CITIZEN. Some of you may have NATURE instead (chief, drifter)
·       CITIZEN is used for anything to do with normal civilization that isn’t covered by your career.  Also, for stuff. See below.  This adds to your” one dice for everything default” if it is, in fact, related to everyday life.  If you want, you can specify a mundane career which uses CITIZEN for tests.
·       NATURE is the opposite of CITIZEN.  NATURE is the equivalent of CITIZEN for situations in the wilderness (round down).  You can have both if you have two relevant careers. 
·       Initially, you roll for one; if you have a career that allows the other, it starts at half.
·       You can either assume a 2 or roll Hd-Ld – and start with 0-5

Start with 1 free advantage, each extra one costs 1 GRIT (higher level campaigns start with more for free)
Some explanations now available !
·       EXPERT () You are expert in something specific which is what you fill in the ( ) with.  It may be a specific academic discipline (Expert(Psychology), say) or a very granular subset of a career e.g. Expert(Airship pilot), (Tommy Gun), (Safecracker), (Demolitions), (Boxing) .
·       GIZMO: you have a very cool signature item; often unique, it is yours and yours alone. You have an extra success when using it to do stuff.;
o    if it is lost or destroyed, it is regained by the next episode.
o    if you intentionally decide to lose the use of it for the rest of the episode, you can
§  Add a second success to any test that includes the Gizmo.
§  Stop all damage from one source before you roll GRIT. 
§  Recover all your GRIT
§  NOTE: only one GIZMO can be lost per episode, even if you have several.
·       SIDEKICK: You have an extra loyal character that you control. Can be expended as above, but is lost for good.  You (and he) have an extra success on any task that you work together on. The SIDEKICK Starts as either
o    a 221-G5 with any mix of three advantages or one dice careers,
o    a 222-G4 with three career dice and one advantage
o    a 321-G3 with four career dice and one advantage
·       PET: as a sidekick, but an animal. The PET starts as
o    111-G5 with two advantages
o    211-G4 with three advantages;
o    311-G4 with two advantages, or
o    411-G4 with one advantage
o    In almost all cases, the only stat above 1 is action. Advantages need to be animal based.
·       WEALTHY: gives you a success when rolling to get a resource by paying cash.
·       RESOURCEFUL: The same, but only for scrounging and McGyvering, and fixing.
·       ORGANIZATION:  You are a member of a powerful or influential group and have an ADVANTAGE when dealing with them. Generally the more likely you are to encounter a member, the less power they will have. Examples: mob, police, FBI, Radar Secret Service, Comintern, NKVD, Masons, Illuminati
·       UNDERCLASS, LOWLIFE.  The former is being a member of an oppressed or disenfranchised but insular minority that looks out for each other as a result (Poor, Black, Romany, Jews) ; lowlife is being either part of, or very familiar with the underworld/criminal world (street gang thug, wiseguy, beat cop, private eye)
Choose your lifestyle: STEADFAST or CORRUPT. Avoid obvious gender preference jokes.
·       STEADFAST means you are basically a good citizen, and stay (as much as possible) on the right side of the laws, morals and ethics of the period. 
·       CORRUPT  means that you cut corners, look out for number one, possibly are on the wrong side of the law in a minor way.  Note that this isn’t necessarily criminal. 
If we had alignments, we would have Saintly and Straight above Steadfast, with Criminal and Evil below corrupt.  Those are for NPCs; generally if a player gets there, it is out of the game.
What effect does this have on the game ?
None, really.  I just included it for compatibility with Pulp board games and MYTHOS.