Author Topic: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary  (Read 38221 times)

Offline Baron Hazard

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #120 on: August 03, 2010, 11:33:07 PM »
Bump for awesomeness staying on the front page. in fact, anyway we could get this thread of pure raw awesomeness stickied? lol.

Offline Deadmanwalking

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #121 on: August 03, 2010, 11:47:19 PM »
Sorry for the delay, folks. I haven't abandoned this thread, my last week has just been a bit hectic.

Offline Jeckel

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #122 on: August 09, 2010, 12:31:46 AM »
I finally got to throw a Giant Squid at my group. The were on a small magically-indestructible boat in the middle of an ocean and the squid attacked. All three players failed their alertness horribly and were surprised. A hectic battle ensued, a bunch of bruises, many cuts, and several broken bones were inflicted on the party. It was only ended when the Gunslinger maneuvered the Blinded aspect on the squid with a spray from his repeater. He handed the tag to our Clockwork Crafter who tossed a small bomb right done the squid's beak and blew the crap clean out of it. Later on, the tentacles that were still stuck to the boat came in handy as food after their meager supplies had run out.

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On a different note. I've been working on a small session to do in Africa while my group is on their way to Austraila and I noticed that Silverback Gorilla doesn't have any aspects other then the High Concept.

I was thinking that these aspects might work, though they might need a little rewording.

Defender of the Troop
Almost Human
User of Simple Tools

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A few other ideas for neat animals.

Sloth. I had no idea that these things can swim and actually prefer to travel distance in the water rather then on the ground or in trees.

Manatee. The mild mannered cows of the sea and cute in a weird way.

Zebra. I have an idea of a guy on a zebra challenging one of my group to a joust-y kind of contest. Not sure if this warrants a new animal sheet or if one of the horse sheets would work with a change or two.
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Offline Belial666

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #123 on: August 11, 2010, 07:53:34 PM »
How do those animal builds compare to modern weaponry though?

An AK-47 is weapon 3. A group of 4 troopers with fair to good guns and AK-47s will need more than 2 exchanges to take out the elephant.
Someone with an elephant gun (Weapon 4? Maybe weapon 4 and armor piercing?) would almost never be able to kill the elephant in one shot, which is what the gun was designed to do.

Offline Deadmanwalking

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #124 on: August 12, 2010, 03:49:55 AM »
How do those animal builds compare to modern weaponry though?

An AK-47 is weapon 3. A group of 4 troopers with fair to good guns and AK-47s will need more than 2 exchanges to take out the elephant.

And this is unrealistic how? Elephants take quite a lot of killing.

Someone with an elephant gun (Weapon 4? Maybe weapon 4 and armor piercing?) would almost never be able to kill the elephant in one shot, which is what the gun was designed to do.

As an unaimed shot? No, they can't. Shooting an elephant somewhere non-vital is extremely unlikely to kill it, though. They're huge. If you take a few round to aim (applying multiple Aspects to the creature) and get a good bead on it, then you can kill it.

And bear in mind the Elephant's Mediocre dodging skills, so a really good shot could take it down even without that. I mean, an 8 to hit (very doable with a couple of FP) and a single point of armor piercing (which I very much would give to an elephant gun) is enough to take it out on average.

Also, an experienced hunter might well know an Elephant's Catch (ie: it's precise vulnerable spots and the ways to target them) and be able to manage it much more easily.

Offline Belial666

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #125 on: August 12, 2010, 04:17:51 AM »
Well, a shot with a .600 Overkill bullet penetrates 6 feet into solid oak. The game hunters would shoot more or less center-mass on the elephant and it would go out the other side. Just about any non-supernatural creature will drop after that.
(those kind of guns and rounds were made as emergency backup to stop charging attacks where you didn't have time to aim so 1-hit-kill was essential)

The reason I am contesting Supernatural and Mythic toughness for animals is that this kind of ability is for creatures that can lose up major parts of their own mass or otherwise suffer tremendous harm and keep going.
The way I'd do the big animals would be Inhuman Toughness at most and a stunt to reduce stress from low-weapon-rating attacks (the reverse of lethal weapon that gives bonus damage to unarmored targets). That way they'd be resistant to harm from what animals normally resist but any big weapon would drop them. As is, an elephant could eat a blast from a weapon 7 rocket launcher and survive. It could even take 2-3 hits to take him out if the attacker's skill was only great or so.

In contrast, a supernatural toughness black court vampire should take a weapon 4 armor piercing 2 shot to the torso that would open a fist-sized hole into it and keep going. Animals aren't supposed to do that.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2010, 04:30:24 AM by Belial666 »

Offline wyvern

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #126 on: August 12, 2010, 04:32:28 AM »
Well, a shot with a .600 Overkill bullet penetrates 6 feet into solid oak. The game hunters would shoot more or less center-mass on the elephant and it would go out the other side. Just about any non-supernatural creature will drop after that.

Eventually?  Probably; at least without serious medical care.  Right then and there?  Unless you lucked out and hit the heart or the spine, I'd really doubt that.  And then the elephant tramples you.  The end.

The thing here is that toughness powers for large animals are for things that can take grievous amounts of person-scaled damage and keep going.  Which, hey, an elephant *can*.  You can take a chunk out of it the size of a guy's arm, and that really won't do more - in the short term - than make it angry.

The one thing I would do as a GM, is say that the toughness stress boxes on things like elephants do represent actual serious injury; they won't clear between scenes, and without medical treatment can get infected and lead to death.  Other than that... a glancing hit with a rocket launcher not killing one?  Sure, I can totally see that.  A dead on hit, on the other hand - no, the elephant can't take that; and it wouldn't take anywhere near as much aim as you'd need to hit heart or brain with an elephant gun, either.  I'd probably declare that high explosives satisfy the elephant's catch, too; that sort of damage isn't something raw mass will protect against very well.

Still, if you want big animals to be more fragile - go for it.  Won't break the game either way.

Offline Belial666

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #127 on: August 12, 2010, 04:46:12 AM »
But that's the kind of situation that kind of guns were used for; stopping cold a suddenly charging big animal. And they worked...

Offline wyvern

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #128 on: August 12, 2010, 04:51:04 AM »
Hm.  Then maybe I just don't know what I'm talking about?  This is always possible, especially when I'm trying to derive game-useful information from wikipedia.

Or possibly elephant guns are rather more than weapon: 4?

I dunno.  I do know that at least early elephant guns weren't anywhere near the sort of lethality you're describing, but there doesn't seem to be much info on modern ones, at least in the places I've gone looking.

Offline Deadmanwalking

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #129 on: August 12, 2010, 08:31:44 AM »
Well, a shot with a .600 Overkill bullet penetrates 6 feet into solid oak. The game hunters would shoot more or less center-mass on the elephant and it would go out the other side. Just about any non-supernatural creature will drop after that.

Not really. Rhinos and Grizzly Bears can casually keep coming after that sort of thing (and do). Shooting a Grizzly Bear with a 30-06 is about as likely to stop it as throwing rocks at it. It might die later, but that doesn't help you in the mean time.

Debatably the Stress on such creatures shouldn't heal between scenes...but that's kind of an academic distinction most of the time with mundane critters.

The reason I am contesting Supernatural and Mythic toughness for animals is that this kind of ability is for creatures that can lose up major parts of their own mass or otherwise suffer tremendous harm and keep going.

Well, then a lot of mundane animals should totally have it. The Grizzly bear Lewis and Clark ran into got shot repeatedly, including through the eye, and still chased them off a cliff. Large animals are tougher than you're giving them credit for.

You'll also note that I don't give it out all willy-nilly. I think the only critters with higher than Inhuman on Toughness are the Elephant and the Orca. Both of whom would seem to warrant it.

The way I'd do the big animals would be Inhuman Toughness at most and a stunt to reduce stress from low-weapon-rating attacks (the reverse of lethal weapon that . That way they'd be resistant to harm from what animals normally resist but any big weapon would drop them. As is, an elephant could eat a blast from a weapon 7 rocket launcher and survive. It could even take 2-3 hits to take him out if the attacker's skill was only great or so.

Uh? Not really in any actual fight. At Great skill and a single FP that's a one hit kill for the most part. Especially if you consider being ground zero of large explosions like that to satisfy the elephant's Catch (which I probably would).

In contrast, a supernatural toughness black court vampire should take a weapon 4 armor piercing 2 shot to the torso that would open a fist-sized hole into it and keep going. Animals aren't supposed to do that.

Big enough ones absolutely do. Or take it and survive any way. The big difference between supernatural critters and most mundane animals is that the supernaturals are smart and/or agressive enough to charge the gunman. Most animals will panic and/or run, allowing the gunman several shots. This is actually a general (and important) note on animals: The few that keep coming after being wounded are feared far and wide by hunters, and likely enough to kill you: Wild boars, Grizzly Bears, Cape Buffalo, stuff like that.

Being charged by an Elephant is the sort of thing you should need to burn FP on surviving (say, the 2 or 3 it'd take to kill the critter). Well, unless you do this all the time (and know the aforementioned Catch).



I actually found a youtube video of some elephant hunters. They take some time to set up...and still require four shots to kill the creature. I'll admit they weren't using an Elephant gun, though. Here's the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SP_AaKuIkqY

Offline Belial666

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #130 on: August 12, 2010, 09:20:29 AM »
Meh. Judging from the pathetic recoil and small bore of their rifles they were using sissy high penetration low caliber rounds, maybe 7.62 39 mm. Those got a muzzle energy of ~2000 joules. Heavy Elephant guns can go as high as 16.000-19.000 joules (.600 Overkill and .700 Nitro Express repsectively) , nearly ten times that much power in a single shot.

In comparison, the .44 Magnum round is at about 1.400 joules. Another comparison, the .30-06 Springfield is at about 4.000 joules. Elephant guns are serious firepower.




Hmm. Maybe it is the gun that's the problem. What would you give as weapon rating for that kind of firepower? I have it as Weapon 4, Armor Piercing 2, slightly better than a grenade which is just weapon 4.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2010, 09:31:31 AM by Belial666 »

Offline Deadmanwalking

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #131 on: August 12, 2010, 12:02:45 PM »
I freely admitted it wasn't an elephant gun.  :)

Hmm. Maybe it is the gun that's the problem. What would you give as weapon rating for that kind of firepower? I have it as Weapon 4, Armor Piercing 2, slightly better than a grenade which is just weapon 4.

Hmmm. For guns that big (or things like a .50 caliber sniper rifle) I'd actually be inclined to go Weapon: 5, Armor Piercing: 2, and in most cases at least one Resources declaration for an extra Aspect (since you don't pull those out without some prep being involved). I mean, we're talking guns that go through cinderblocks like they were paper, here.

Offline Attercap

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #132 on: August 25, 2010, 02:20:28 PM »
Fantastic work, Deadmanwalking! I'm planning on using a number of animal stats in my game (which uses the Dresden rules, but isn't part of the Dresdenverse) for skinwalkers. Any chance you're still looking to do a few more animals? Along with Jeckel's requests, I'd like to see:
Ducks/Geese
Jellyfish
Malayan flying foxes (or some other large bat)
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Offline Sanctaphrax

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Re: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!: A Dresdenverse Bestiary
« Reply #133 on: September 05, 2010, 04:52:37 AM »
Very nice stats you have here. You're quite the public benefactor, Deadmanwalking. Still, I have a bit of (hopefully constructive) criticism.

1. The rules for alertness and athletics are designed for humans. Animals have a completely different balance of senses and athletic abilities. While the sensory part of this is partly represented by the Echoes Of The Beast power that all animals have, I don't feel that it goes far enough. It only gives a +1 bonus to alertness, which doesn't come close to covering the difference between the sense of smell of a human and that of a shark or dog. I would fix this with stunts, if I were you. Same goes for athletics: the animals with the Awkward On Land aspect don't have anything backing it up. Once again, you can fix this with stunts.

2. It's often not clear what benefits an animal gets from Echoes Of The Beast. It would be most helpful if you could list what you have in mind for each.

3. It's not entirely clear what the catches on the toughness abilities of the animals are. In fact, I'm not even sure whether they have catches. Should we just assume that the catch is always vulnerable points on the body of the animal?

Don't take all this as a sign that I think you did a bad job. On the contrary, this is great stuff. But you can always improve, right?