After that whopping post last week, I wanted to do a simpler character this week. Imagine my surprise when I ended up rolling them with psionic ability! Still, this character was a lot of fun, and as I generally adore playing more skill-based PCs, it was fairly easy to write. Hope you enjoy this little bookworm!
Game: Palladium Books’ Rifts RPG
Books Needed: Rifts Ultimate Edition, Rifts Sourcebook 01
Recommended Setting: Any average adventuring group of a generally good or honorable alignment that is not pro-Coalition. Due to the naure of the character and O.C.C., not well suited to M.D.C./high powered campaigns – this is a “skill character”, not a “kill character”.
Nickname: Edgar or Professor Kelley
Exp. Level: One
Experience Table: Rogue Scholar
O.C.C.: Rogue Scholar
Invoke Trust/Intimidate: 60%
Charm/Impress: Not applicable.
Health Points: 12 (+1D6/lvl)
S.D.C.: 30 (+1D6/lvl)
M.D.C.: Not applicable.
P.P.E.: 7 (permanent)
I.S.P.: 29 (+1D6/lvl, Minor Psychic)
Chi: Not applicable.
Horror Factor: Not applicable.
IQ: 19 (+5% one time bonus to all new skills)
PS: 12 (Lift/Carry: 240/120 lbs.)
SPD: 7 (Run: 4 mph.)
Hand to Hand: Basic
+Restrain Punch: 2
+Spell Strength: None
Fist Punch 1D4
Power Punch 1D4x2 (counts as 2 attacks)
Power Kick 1D8x2 (counts as 2 attacks)
Racial Natural Abilities
Occupational Natural Abilities
Storyteller and Teacher Rogue Scholars are natural born storytellers and educators with a flair for making even dry subjects like history, science, and math sound fun and exciting. This is a passion that enables them to teach others over a period of time (equal to a Secondary Skill after 1D6+8 weeks of lessons; with at least 12 hours per week dedicated to teaching, and another 10 hours of study by the student per week.)
Find Books and Historical Artifacts +20% to Find Contraband in relation to books, art, film, and pre-Rifts artifacts in general. This bonus is added to the Scholar’s normal Find Contraband skill whenever such items are sought. They can also get these items at a discount; 40% off the list price as a courtesy from most other Rogue Scholars/Scientists who value knowledge and history. A 50% discount on items bought through the Black Market so long as the Scholar trades at least 24 hours of their time working for them (bookkeeping, translating text/books, transcribing passages, authenticating inventory acquired from adventurers and other sources, teaching, and other work applicable to the brainy character.) Every 24 hours they put in, they can earn up to 30,000 credits worth in books and supplies (paper, notebooks, writing/drawing implements, computer, recorder, camera, etc.), or relics and artifacts from the past for half (15,000 credits, their cost.)
Recognize Authenticity An exclusive skill that enables the Scholar to tell if an item is a true pre-Rifts artifact, an original edition, a recent facsimile copy (which may be just as good from an information point of view), new or used, defective or incomplete or censored, a forgery, professionally restored, low or high quality, and a fair price for said object. Skill Level: 58% +3%/lvl.
Professional Restoration An exclusive skill that enables the Scholar to patch, touch up, and repair books, bindings, all paper products, and works of art (excluding 3D items), to improve their appearance and value by 8% per level of experience with a successful restoration. A failed skill roll means there is no improvement, wait a week and try again. A second failed roll means it is beyond their ability to restore. Skill Level: 58% +3%/lvl. Bonuses to Related Skills: +10% to Art, Calligraphy, Forgery, and Photography (already applied.)
+Ritual Magic: None
+Harmful Drugs: None
+Horror Factor: None
+Mind Control: None
R.C.C. Related Skills:
Literacy: Native: American 95% +%5/lvl
Literacy: Other: Spanish 65% +5%/lvl
Literacy: Other: Dragonese/Elven 65% +5%/lvl
Literacy: Other: Faerie Speak 65% +5%/lvl
Language: Native: American 98% (maximum)
Language: Other: Spanish 80% +3%/lvl
Language: Other: Sign Language 55% +3%/lvl
Appraise Goods 70% +5%/lvl (taken twice, also includes magic items)
Mathematics: Basic 75% +5%/lvl
Computer Operation 65% +5%/lvl
Computer Programming 50% +5%/lvl
Creative Writing 45% +5%/lvl
Find Contraband 56% +4%/lvl (+20% for books/artifacts, see Occupational Abilities)
History: Pre-Rifts 79%/71% +4%/lvl
History: Post Apocalypse 75%/70% +5%/lvl
Public Speaking 55% +5%/lvl
Research 75% +5%/lvl
Pilot: Hovercraft (Ground) 65% +5%/lvl
O.C.C. Related Skills: (+2 skills at levels 3, 6, 9, and 12.)
Lore: Faeries and Creatures of Magic 52% +5%/lvl
Lore: Magic 57% +5%/lvl
Lore: Psychics and Psionics 52% +5%/lvl
Lore: D-Bees 52% +5%/lvl
Mythology 50% +5%/lvl
Anthropology 45% +5%/lvl
Archeology 45%/35% +5%/lvl
Mathematics: Advanced 60% +5%/lvl
Computer Hacking 35% +5%/lvl
Forgery 45% +5%/lvl
Secondary Skills: (+1 skill at levels 2, 5, 8, 12, and 15.)
Art 45% +5%/lvl
Lore: Demons and Monsters 42% +5%/lvl
Knife (+1 strike 2, 4, 7, 10, 13. +1 parry 1, 3, 6, 9, 12. +1 strike when thrown 1, 3, 6, 8, 10, 13.)
Energy Pistol (+1 strike 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14.)
Throwing Knife ×4 1D4, 60ft.
Survival Knife 1D6.
Vibro Knife 1D6 M.D.
Wilk’s 320 LASER Pistol
Damage: 1D6 M.D.
Payload: 20 individual shots. ×2 extra e-clip.
Bonus: +2 to strike using aimed shot due to the lightweight nature and superior balance of the gun.
Plastic Man Full environmental armour, made of lightweight polycarbonate materials. Main Body: 35 M.D.C. Helmet: 30 M.D.C. Arms: 15 M.D.C. each. Legs: 22 M.D.C. each. -10% movement penalty, fair mobility.
Vehicles/Riding Animals (Note: I had to use the robot vehicle creation rules in SB1 as loose guidelines to make this, as I could not find the stats for a general hover truck anywhere! However, this is not a robot vehicle with A.I., it is a normal hover vehicle.)
Fjord Hover Truck Resembles a pre-Rifts truck, but in place of wheels it has 4 hover jets. This is a cheaper hover truck model intended for commercial use and hauling, it’s sturdy and dependable but not built for intense speed. Equipped with a CB Radio system and a removable top for the truck bed.
Speed/Mileage: 150 mph/200 miles per full electric charge.
M.D.C. By Location: Main Body: 200 (can be reinforced).
Stats: 3,000 lbs., 18ft long, 10ft tall. Electric engine.
Crew/Passengers: 7 passengers (2 in cab, 5 in truck bed), 1 driver (more if crammed in there), plenty of cargo space in truck bed.
Weapons: None (can be purchased).
Gear (All located in knapsack unless stated otherwise.)
Dress Clothing ×2 (typically worn or in backpack)
Portable Compact Disk Recorder/Player (plays 1 and 3 inch audio disks)
Video Disk Player (plays 1 and 3 inch video disks)
Digital Camera (100 still photos and up to 30 minutes of video per disk; ×3 if no still photos/video is used, in pockets)
Portable Language Translator
Pocket Notebook ×4 (×2 in pockets)
Sketch Pad ×2
Pencil ×12 (×3 in pockets)
Permanent Marker ×12 (×2 in pockets)
Calligraphy Pen and Ink
Magnifying Glass (in pockets)
Binoculars (in backpack)
Hat (in backpack)
Eyeglasses (×2, ×1 is always worn, one is kept in a case as a spare)
Bedroll (in backpack)
Backpack ×2 (×1 for just books that is usually stored in vehicle or home)
Carrying Case, Large ×3 (specialized for artifacts; foam padding, airtight, lock, etc., ×1 in backpack, ×2 in vehicle or home)
Radio, Long Range (in backpack)
Personal Items (picture of family, a handful of polyhedral dice with drawstring bag, pack of playing cards, a small journal that’s written in daily, a couple of minifigurines, etc., some in pockets)
Leather Belt ×3 (used to stack books in backpack)
Book Collection (×20, contains various genres, but is mostly science fiction, technical repair/DIY manuals, a few texts from “Creatures and Caverns: The Role Playing Game”, nature identification, poetry, and theatre – kept in book backpack [many more at home])
Canteen ×2 (×1 kept in vehicle)
Salary 200 credits/week as a teacher.
Black Market Items 15,000 credits worth of artifacts.
Other Currency Not applicable.
Magic (P.P.E. Cost)
Psionics (I.S.P. Cost)
Speed Reading (2) Range: Self. Duration: 3 minutes (12 melee rounds) per level. This is the ability to read and comprehend the writen word extremely quickly, though it requires Literacy in the language written. Speed of reading is 30 pages per minute (4 melee rounds). The psychic will retain the knowledge as they would normally. Highly technical texts will reduce the speed by half (15 pages per minute), and may require two readings to remember in detail.
Object Read (6+) Range: Touch. Duration: Varies; typically 2D6 minutes. Saving Throw: None. Skill Levels: Impressions: 56% +2%/lvl. Images: 48% +2%/lvl. Present: 38% +2%/lvl. Also known as Psychometry, this uncanny ability enables the psychic to receive impressions and images from an object regarding it use, history, and last owner. This is done by holding the object and focusing on a specific line of thought or opening up to general impressions (the latter is always more vague and random). Just as a psychic must open themself to sense evil or magic, they must open themselves to the object. If successful, they will receive impressions and/or images which reveal bits of information.
Impressions Include: General alignment of its last owner (good/selfish/evil), general emotional state of mind (angry/happy/sad/hate filled/confused/etc.), the objects general purpose/use, whether the last owner is living or dead, and whether the item has been used with/by magic or supernatural forces. It will also conclusively indicate whether the item is currently enchanted or contains a supernatural force/entity (as well as its alignment and emotions.) If the item is possessed, reading it leaves the user totally vulnerable to psychic attack (no bonus to save).
Images Include: This also provides brief snippets of images and events that offer glances to the previous owner and others close to them. Traumatic and emotionally charged events/images are the easies to see. Impressions will accompany the images, adding to the story of the object as it unfolds. Information includes: approximate age, height, weight, build, race, sex, sometimes occupation, hair color and length, special facial or body features (scar/tattoo/beard/etc. – though very often the exact facial features are out of focus, blurred, or obscured), the objects purpose/use, and some special event (usually very traumatic, important, or happy.) Often the event image will be fragmented, but the event will always be one in which the object was involved in some way.
The Success/Failure of an Object Read: Roll percentile dice once each for impressions and images; a failed roll for both images and impressions means the user feels and sees nothing. The reader can fail one roll but succeed at the other, which means they can get no impressions, but still see images (or vice versa.) Once an object has been read it cannot be read again by the same psychic, even if they did not see/feel a thing. Of course, the psychic can attempt to read other items, but each item reading attempt will cost 6 I.S.P.
Reading the Present: The present can be glimpsed, but costs an sdditional 4 I.S.P. to do so with no guarantee of success and cannot be seen unless the user was successful on at least one of the previous read impressions or images rolls. Sometimes the psychic can focus in to see and feel the last owner as they are in that current moment. This will provide and idea of their current state of mind/emotion, appearance, dress, general location (that is to say, a bedroom, office, street, outdoors, etc. – no address or sense of distance away from the reader is provided), general features (shaved their beard, dyed their hair, lost a limb, etc.), and so on. The psychic may be able to identify a place or person by feature if they have seen it before or run into them in the near future.
Not applicable, though they are not opposed to implants or modifications.
Power Armour/Robot Vehicles
True Name: Edward Garfield Kelley (formerly Spencer)
Height: 5′ 11″
Weight: 188 lbs.
Description: Deep black skin, a full beard and head of hair (both kept short), and brown eyes and glasses, he is of average height, but with a wide and slightly chubby build (his profession is not one that typically calls for action.) He is typically wearing a well-worn, inexpensive suit, or sturdy traveling clothes if he plans to do more than teaching/reading. He enjoys appearing professional, something that’s helped more than hindered him in his line of work.
Insanity(s): Phobia: Psi-Stalkers.
Sentiments Toward Coalition State: Distaste for their methods and hunting of anything inherently “non-human”. He is wary of their presence, but unless there are rumors of Psi-Stalkers, he typically just avoids them (if there is a rumor of a Psi-Stalker, he leaves as soon as possible.) Due to his unconventional love of books and tireless efforts to teach literacy, he doesn’t often venture into CS territory, or at least not in their cities if he can help it.
Sentiments Toward D-Bees: Actively seeks their equality, he also loves learning about their culture and experiences, so he often strikes up conversation with those races he is unfamiliar with. There are some situations where he will even do extra favors or grant a discount to a D-Bee, because they catch such a short break elsewhere.
Sentiments Toward Humans: Indifferent, though he is friendly toward almost everyone and only responds with aggression should he be shown it first and even then only if there is no other option (like talking the attacker down or negotiating.)
Mutations: Not applicable.
Bad Vision The character needs glasses, contacts, or implants to see clearly, and without either of these suffers a -3 to strike (-5 in the dark or at night) and cannot perform an aimed shot.
Background: Born in Canada, Edward always had a love of literature and history (mythology and magic were a particularly strong interest), and he soaked up all the knowledge he could from his parents, who are both scientists. The Spencers moved to CS territory in North America to be closer to their other kin when he was a young teenager, and from that point on, “Edgar” started to notice he didn’t fit the mold of most other children he went to school with. He was exceptionally bright, not at all interested in athletics, and obsessed with learning about the “monsters” that came from the Rifts – he didn’t believe that so many sentient beings could be as dangerous and violent as they were told. And he could read; something that was heavily discouraged – the instructors claimed to not even have materials for such past times. When he was caught teaching his friends how to read and frequently questioning the faculty about D-Bees and the intentions of the government, he was suspended. His parents opted to homeschool him from that point, partly because he didn’t fit in, but mostly because less negative attention would be drawn to him at home. His friends were not allowed to visit by their own parents, and he started to build up the notion that the Coalition was not as much a protective force as it was an oppressive fist. Still, scholarly and scientific types are useful everywhere, even in the CS, and he found work after graduation under watchful eyes in a government lab. He worked with pre-Rifts artifacts, which he was fascinated by, side by side with other scientists and operators to determine their use and if they could be repurposed for other things. He fell in love with one of those Operators, an electrical engineer; they were married and lived together for a few years before eventually adopting an infant. When their son was 6, Edgar’s psionic ability manifested at the lab; he was able to read at unnatural speeds and began to see visions when touching the artifacts. At first they assumed he was cursed by an object, but once he got home the family realized the truth. Edgar knew he and his family would be imprisoned or worse if he were found out, especially with his already suspicious view of their government, so he opted to leave for his loved ones’ sakes. After a tearful goodbye, Edgar took to the road for a few months, before he finally happened upon a rural town that seemed friendly toward non-humans and innate powers – best of all, they were short on teachers. He became known as Professor Kelley, began running a small library out of his home, and instructed the children (and many adults) in literacy, history, mathermatics, and other subjects he was familiar with. He is well respected and loves working with children – to make up for the fact that he can’t see his son.
Family Tree: Husband is Thom Kelley, a skilled Operator who is heavily monitored by the government due to his work. Adopted son is Derek Kelley, who is deaf and now 12 years old; he enjoys working with electronics like Thom, but has a knack for cybernetics. Edgar still has very occasional, secretive contact with only Thom, but until the Operator is allowed to leave his work at the facility, their reunion outside of the CS territories isn’t possible. His parents (a Body Fixer and a Rogue Scientist) have not had contact with Edgar since before he left, and they believe him to have run out on his family and to have possibly died in the years following – this is the unfortunate story that Thom has had to tell to keep Edgar’s abilities secret.
Edgar the Human (Scrupulous, 1st level Rogue Scholar O.C.C.)
IQ: 19 ME: 17 MA: 20 (Invoke Trust/Intimidate 60%) PS: 12 PP: 10 PE: 12 PB: 8 Spd: 7 HP: 12 SDC: 30 PPE/ISP: 7/29 Attacks: 4
Arms: Wilk’s 320 LASER Pistol: 1D6 M.D., 1000ft, +2 aimed shot. Throwing Knife: ×4 1D4, 60ft. Survival Knife: 1D6. Vibro Knife: 1D6 M.D. Plastic Man Armour: 139 M.D.C.
Abilities: Storyteller and Teacher, Find Books and Historical Artifacts, Recognize Authenticity, and Professional Restoration.
Spells: Not applicable.
Psionics: Speed Read (2), Object Read (6+).
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