- Fallout RPG Basic
Below are a number of the basic rules that will be used within the Fallout RPG which covers how the game will be played.
Patronising Base Rules
#1 The GM’s decision is final. Sometimes the rules will be bent for story telling basis…or because someone wants to do something really awesome and gets the roll’s to back it up. Where there is agreement that rules are unclear, the GM will likely relent to the players. The rules will then be amended as required.
#2 Play as your character. The decisions you make won’t necessarily be the decisions that you yourself would make. Instead ensure that you act in character. The GM can decide to find ways to punish people for acting outside of their character, i.e. a good natured character suddenly slaughtering helpless people should expect some kind of redress. We should also refer to each other in our character’s names to try to keep the feeling going and keep tangential conversations to a minimum. Metagaming, or making decisions based on information your character would not know is also against the spirit of the game. The GM may ask players to explain their motivations for their actions and Metagaming may have ramifications!
#3 Make sure everyone gets a turn. Many of the challenges can be approached in lots of different ways and use different people’s skills and abilities. Make sure that everyone gets a chance to speak and offer up ideas. If the party decide to nominate a leader, then they should take on the responsibility to ensure that everyone gets a chance to speak. The GM will also do his part to include all players.
#4 Speak up. As above really…
#5 Ask questions. Be sure to ask questions of the GM and other players for further explanation or description of areas, people etc. Don’t assume that the GM will tell you everything that you need to know!
#6 Play the game. The game does not use any miniatures or much in the way of detailed maps. The descriptions of areas such as combat or puzzle areas come only from the GM’s descriptions and so the spoken details are important. The GM will clarify anything that the players find unclear as required.
A large part of the game involves exploration and survival within the dangerous wasteland following the Great War. The game includes a variety of settings, including various settlements and different areas of the wasteland. While “out of combat” there is no turn sequence to be worried about. To a large extent you can do anything you want while exploring, go anywhere and do anything. For the most part there will be objectives set by Non Playable Characters (NPCs) that the party will be completing in the way they want as part of a larger story arc. That doesn’t mean that the GM should be directing the game, rather the story is told by the GM reacting to the player’s decisions and the story is a collaboration. He may get huffy however if the party are purposely trying to be difficult!
There are a variety of tests that the GM can ask the party to complete. For example, Perception checks to sense deception when speaking to NPCs or see an area clearer. Tests are set by the GM to judge whether the party can achieve what they want to, or to judge how much detail to give to the party in a perception test. Tests are completed by rolling 3 D6’s and adding any qualifying modifiers. The GM will now have 2 choices on how to determine the success or failure.
Set Pass Rate: The GM will judge how difficult the thing the party are trying to do will be and set a target roll accordingly. The target will be set before the player rolls.
Contested Rolls: Particular tests such as persuasion or barter will see the party member and NPC roll 3D6 and add their applicable modifiers. Whichever has the highest roll ‘wins’ and the GM will then describe the results.
Advanced Rule - Advantage and Disadvantage: The GM may award players advantage or disadvantage to rolls in particular scenarios. For example, players may be at a combat disadvantage fighting during a sandstorm. When at advantage or disadvantage players will roll their 3D6 twice. If advantage is given the higher number is used, if at disadvantage the lower number is used. Modifiers are added as normal
A player attempts to attack a Radscorpian during a bad sandstorm. The GM decides that due to the storm the player will be at a disadvantage. The player rolls a 9 and a 14 after their attack modifiers have been added. The 9 is used by the GM as the attack roll which is a miss. The player has been hampered by the sandstorm causing them to miss their attack.
Tests will also be required for the following skills, with the following modifiers:
Negotiating Prices or Contracts – Barter
Healing – Medicine
Crafting & Repair – Science/Repair
Stealth – Sneak
Lockpick - Lockpick
Acrobatics – Agility
Athletics – Strength
Persuasion/Intimidation – Speech
Willpower – Mental Strength
The GM will rule on other tests as required.
Advanced Rule – Players can help each other with certain tests, as judged by the GM. Where a player is assisting in a test, both players will roll for the test, with the highest result taken as the result. An assisting player must declare their intention to assist before the first player touches their dice. The GM will rule on whether the test is suitable for assistance.
A player faces a Medicine test to determine what kind of sickness is affecting a village. As this is an important test another skilled Medic offers to assist, the GM accepts. Both players roll and the higher result is taken.
The GM will ask the party to make a Willpower check in situations where party members would be subjected to mental trauma, such as faces a particularly frightening opponent, coming across a situation which may remind them of a stressful past episode etc. If a party member should fail a willpower test then they will be regarded as frightened. When frightened in combat, the affected party member cannot move towards the target of their fear and will make attacks at disadvantage against it. If the party member is frightened of a particular situation, then they will make any skill checks at a disadvantage.
Party members will be given opportunities to reroll their Willpower test to remove their fear after their combat turn, or at appropriate intervals in the open world.
Willpower also has an effect on party member’s chem resistance. See Chems below.
Luck plays an important part in surviving the wasteland. The main difference between a Ghoul and an irradiated corpse is that one was lucky enough to be able to keep moving after the bombs fell. The difference between getting into a vault full of murderous Gary Clones or one where the air supply was pumped full of psychotic drugs is…well I guess neither of those are particularly lucky.
Within the game party member’s luck stat will affect a number of aspects within the game, from what loot is recovered to the ability to reroll dice in important moments. The GM may ask a player to make a luck check as like any other skill check, if the outcome of an event is purely down to luck.
Furthermore, for every 2 points of luck (rounded down) a character has they can reroll that many single die each game day. A luck skill of four will allow 2 die rerolls per game day. The second roll must be taken whether it is higher or lower.
Computer systems, built with ultramodern and durable vacuum tubes, are littered throughout the wasteland, operating things from Safes, Doors, Robots and everything in between. Gaining unauthorised access (or hacking to you and me) to these systems allow adventurers to access electronic systems in the same way as lockpicking allows access to locked rooms. By tricking the system into going into a maintenance mode, you will be able to view a number of possible passwords. All you have to do is pick the right one.
To hack a terminal, one party member will make a science test and relay this to the GM. The GM will then present the party with a word puzzle, the difficulty will be based on the strength of the security system and the science roll made by the players.
Players get 3 chances to correctly identify the password and will receive feedback from the GM as to how many letters are correct, and in the right order. If three wrong guesses are made the system is locked and the players will not be able to access the system again.
There is no time limit for solving the puzzle, but game time continues while the party are solving the problem.
The Fallout RPG uses the Fantasy AGE system. This system employs “stunt” points to allow party members (and their enemies!) to complete powerful stunts to increase the effectiveness of their rolls. These stunts are detailed separately. The GM may also consider custom stunt requests from the players which fit the current situation better than the standard stunts. Stunt points are earned when the player rolls doubles, or by using the finesse perk. The three die given to each player will be made up of two die of one colour, and another of a different colour. This differently coloured die is the action die and tells the player how many points they have to spend. Stunts are commonly used within Combat or while Roleplaying with NPCs and Party Characters.
Where a player rolls 3 6’s (or uses the finesse perk to make 3 6’s) the player will complete a legendary action. The legendary action will be very powerful, with players able to do outrageous actions, as long as the GM agrees. Furthermore, the action will become legendary, the GM will detail how the particular action affects the world in a much larger way than perhaps the players would expect…
If a player rolls 3 1’s, this is judged to be a legendary failure. It is up to the GM to describe how the legendary failure affects the wider world. Most likely it will involve humiliating the player in some way while likely hurting them or their equipment.
Conversations with NPCs (Non-playable characters)
The wasteland is sparsely populated, but there are concentrations of settlements and tribes that the party will encounter. The GM will voice the various NPCs in order to talk directly with the party. NPCs are not just there for the aid of the party, they are characters with their own personalities, fears, ambitions and intentions. NPCs may aid the party, or try to throw them off depending on their own personal motivations. Don’t trust everything that an NPC tells you, and be prepared to complete perception tests to sense their intentions or get information out of them.
As you travel through the Wasteland you will come across a number of different factions and groups of people. Each community will react to their party in their own way, likewise they will react to the party’s actions in different ways. As the party meet different factions the GM will suggest that their names are added to your character sheets and how the faction reacts to the party. The GM will continue to update the party on their relations with various factions when they change. The way the faction reacts to the party will affect quests that they may offer, what information they give the party, whether they shoot on sight with great big nasty explosives or prices at trader’s stalls.
Do Good things and Good things happen, or so the saying goes. The GM will inform the party of how their Karma is affected by their actions. All Players start with a Karma of 0. No one is quite sure how Karma works of course…
The wasteland is pretty exhausting and explorers will need to rest up. Party members can ask for short rests of around 30 game minutes. This time can be used to complete repairs to equipment, small crafting projects and using First Aid Kits or Doctor’s bags to heal up. Just because the party stops, doesn’t mean the world stops! Some time-sensitive objectives will be affected by resting too often.
Basics and Movement
When in combat the game changes from a free flowing open conversation type game into a turn based game. At the beginning of combat, all participants will roll 3D6 and add their agility. This sets the initiative order, i.e. the order in which characters make their attacks. In some circumstances such as a surprise attack, characters may get a ‘free’ round and be able to attack before the initiative roll takes place.
Combat has two phases, a minor action and a major action, and players can make reactions. These can be completed in any order i.e. you could attack and then move to another location or attack and then reload etc.
Minor Action – Short movement (as judged by the GM), reloading, taking aim (for +1 to the attack roll), change of primary/secondary weapon (with the exception of a grenade), use of stimpack etc.
Major Action – Large/complicated Movement (as judged by the GM), attacking, use of item such as first aid kit or grenades, moving weapon from backpack to primary or secondary weapon slot.
Reaction – When in Melee combat (If using a battle map this will be when players are in adjacent squares) the Player and enemy should be seen as constantly fighting. If one moves out of Melee Range of another, then they can be subjected to an Attack of Opportunity. This attack is always a Melee attack and is resolved as any normal attack.
The turn based nature of combat is designed to allow all players to take their turns, while making it look as though time has slowed down, not paused. For this reason, the GM can cut short talk of detailed strategy at their discretion to what would seem appropriate for the conditions. For example, it would be difficult for the party to have a detailed strategic discussion while under heavy enemy fire or if they were spread across the field (or dead!). Traditionally in tabletop RPGs a turn is approximately 6 seconds of game time. The GM may also decide that the enemy can hear the player’s discussions!
A player's standard Movement is worked out by a simple formula based on a 1inch square or hex battle map is being used. A Character’s movement is 3 + (Agility x0.5) Squares.
Attacking and Defending
When attacking an opponent, the player should inform the GM of the intended target. Once the GM is sure of the target they will ask the player to roll for their Attack. This is shown on the character sheet as 3D6 + any relevant skill or item modifiers.
The player rolls 2, 5, and 3 when attacking with a pistol and the player has a gun skill of 3. The result calculates as: 2 + 5 + 3 + 3 = 13 as the total attack roll.
The GM will then inform the player about whether this has been successful or not. If the attack is successful then the player should roll for damage as described on their particular weapon.
The Player is armed with a .44 Magnum and successfully hits their target. The Magnum’s damage rating is 1D6+6. The player rolls a four, 10 points of damage will then be applied to the player’s target, minus their armour rating. The target is wearing raider armour with a rating of 2, and so will take 8 points of damage.
Advanced Combat – Players and Enemies can use cover to help them defend themselves from attack. If the target is in 50% cover (behind a low wall for example) then their defence rating will be +2. If the target is in 75% cover (a purpose built defensive bunker for example, or crouching behind the low wall) then the defence rating will be +4. The GM will inform the player if their target is in cover when the target is confirmed, before the attack roll is made.
Following their attack, whether successful or not, the players should update their character sheet on ammunition used and the condition of their weapons. Ammunition and Condition will be covered further below.
When the parties’ enemies attack, the GM will target one member of the party, roll 3D6 + any modifiers and relay the result to the party member. The party member will compare this attack score against their defence as stated on their character sheet and inform the GM of the attacks success or failure. If successful, the GM will roll for damage as appropriate. The player should take the damage figure and subtract their armour rating and then subtract that from their Health. The effects on their armour condition should also be noted. Condition will be covered further below.
Where the outcome is a draw, the defender has advantage and so no damage would be recorded.
Advanced Combat. Sneaky characters can perform powerful sneak attacks on unsuspecting foes. All sneak attacks will provide a bonus to damage, with certain weapons giving extra powerful bonuses. Sneak Attacks are rated as normal damage multiplied by the player’s Sneak Rating to a maximum of 5.
A player with a sneak rating of 4 makes a sneak attack and hits with a .22 silenced Pistol. Damage is normally 1D6, as the player is stealthed it will be 3D6. The player rolls a 9. The damage formula becomes 9x4 = 36.
Different weapons do different amounts of damage as well as different types of damage. There are four types of damage:
Bludgeoning – Damage caused by striking an opponent with a flat melee weapon such as a Baseball Bat or Rebar Club.
Slashing – Damage caused by a bladed weapon in a cutting pattern such as the Cavalry Sword.
Piercing – Damage caused by a sharp point being driven into the target such as the Shiv. All firearms do piercing damage.
Fire & Electricity – Fire, Explosive and Electrical damage will always penetrate the wearers armour, reducing their armour rating by half for that attack.
Energy – No current armour has proved particularly resistant or vulnerable to Energy Weapons. The standard armour rating is used to determine damage by energy weapons.
As different weapons do different types of damage, different armours protect in different ways. For example, a Radscorpian may be vulnerable to blunt bludgeoning damage, but resistant to slashing damage.
An armour that is resistant to a type of damage gains 2 armour rating points. An armour vulnerable to a certain type of damage loses 2 armour rating points.
A player hits a Radscorpian with a Rebar Club and rolls 17 damage, which is bludgeoning. The Radscorpian is vulnerable to Bludgeoning damage and so the Radscorpian suffers a -2 to its armour Rating, reducing it to 0. The Radscorpian will take 17 points of damage.
Another player hits a Radscorpian with a Combat Knife and rolls 17 damage. The Radscorpian is resistant to Slashing Damage and so gains a +2 to its Armour Rating, bringing it up to 4. The Radscorpian will take 13 damage.
When attacking with a melee weapon you must be base to base with your target in order to hit, however things are not so simple for Ranged Weapons.
Each Type of Ranged weapon has a further subgroup, (Pistol, Combat Rifle, Sniper) and each with their own basic range.
Range (1 inch squares)
Weapon range can be increased or decreased with the use of Weapon Mods (see crafting).
When using a ranged weapon, the use of ammunition must be considered. Firearms use a different number of rounds for each attack (the 9mm pistol uses 3). The attack consists of three shots, but damage is rolled once. It is up to the players to keep track of their ammo usage and reloading. The GM has the ability to impose penalties, up to removing the effects of attacks on foes if party members have fired without reloading or reloaded with ammo that doesn’t exist.
In a pinch, or if you like to feel your enemies bones crack, you can fight without weapons. Attack rolls are made, adding your unarmed Skill points as normal. Damage is equal to your strength score –0.5 D6.
Certain weapons, such as Brass Knuckles and the power fist are classed as unarmed when attacking, with their damage rolled as described on the weapon.
Most guns have either been in use since before the Great War, or have been improvised in their construction since. With a bit of bad luck, even the best looked after gun can jam at the worst possible time. When the player rolls an attack and the figures on the dice are lower than the table before the weapon will jam.
Weapon Ammo Use per turn
JamRoll (Dice only)
An attempt can be made to fix a Jammed weapon inside of Combat using your Repair Skill. To make a successful repair, players must roll 4+ the weapon’s Jam Roll. If failed, then the weapon will be broken and must be repaired outside of combat.
A Player makes an attack using a .44 Magnum which fires one round per turn. The Player rolls 5 five on the dice, the gun jams. On the Players next turn they make a repair check of 9. The weapon is now broken and must be repaired outside of combat.
Death is always around the corner. If at any time a player’s health falls to 0, the player is considered to be unconscious. A player’s health will not fall below 0. A player has 3 Death points available to help the stave off death.
Losing Death Points – Players can lose death points in two ways.
During their turn in combat initiative the player will need to make a death saving throw in order to revive them. The player must roll a 4+ to succeed in the death saving throw. If the player fails this roll, they will lose 1 Death Point.
If the player receives any damage while unconscious they will lose 1 death point. Enemies will be unlikely to target an unconscious player while there are other targets shooting at them though! Any attacks against an unconscious target will automatically hit.
Regaining Consciousness – Players will require aid from their party members to recover. A player can be treated with a First Aid Kit (in or outside of combat) or Doctors Bag (outside of Combat).
If a player loses all three death points they will die.
Wilson’s Water and Weapons acknowledges the dangerous nature of the roles it assigns to individuals. While there is no life insurance offered by the company, advances in Modern Science means that there is an alternative!
As Cloning Technology is developed in many of the more advanced area of the wasteland, some lucky people are offered a second chance at life. If a character dies, then the player has the option of having their party members activate the creation of a clone. Party members must travel to the location where the player last “backed up” their character and complete the cloning process. Some Institutions may charge for this service.
A Clone will then be created of the fallen player in the same physical condition as the last time the character was backed up. This clone will be created with no equipment, clothing or memory of what has transpired since the backup was complete.
Players have the option of not activating a clone and either letting that character die or swapping out to another character until the party are able to create a clone. Swapping out characters frequently may result in players playing lower level characters than the rest of the Party. If a new character is being created, then it will be at a level below the lowest level character.
Clone Back up – Players can create a backup of themselves at a cloning facility to allow revival should the player die. Most Institutions will charge a fee for creating a clone back up. This saves the current version of the character, with their relevant skills and experience as recorded on the Clone Sheet.
During their travels party members may acquire Robots or animals that travel with them as companions or pets. These followers will normally follow their master and can be used for their particular skills.
Companions can also get involved with combat. During combat they will follow their master, or wait in an area as a free action. Their master can also use their actions to command their companion to do appropriate things.
For example – an Eyebot’s master uses their minor action to move their eyebot ahead to scout out an area. They would also be able to use their major action to attack with the Eyebot’s Laser cannon. The player will not get a Major action in this turn as they have used it to command the Eyebot.
Companions make their skill checks separately from their master using their own stats and may also have resource requirements. Not fulfilling these requirements may have ramifications!
Most items in the wasteland, armour, weapons etc. were created before the Great War, around 200 years ago. Over time items can become pretty fragile and will degrade through use. Items bought form Wilson’s Water and Weapons start at 100. Not all traders sell such quality equipment.
Armour – Maximum armour condition is calculated as 100 multiplied by the Armour Rating.
Leather Armour has a rating of 4. Maximum condition is 4 x 100 = 400. 10 damage is inflicted on the wearer of the armour, so the armour rating is reduced to 390.
Once the armour condition has been reduced by 50% the armour becomes half as effective (Damage is rounded down). If the armour reaches 0 or below, the armour is useless and could only be used as spare parts.
Player wearing leather armour takes 5 damage, making their armour condition 199 with the player taking 1 damage to their health. The player then takes another 5 damage. This time the condition will fall to 194, but the player will now take 3 damage to their health as the armour rating of their leather armour has been reduced to 2.
Melee Weapons – Melee weapons are typically made of two material types, wood or metal. Plastic is a very rare material type within the Fallout Universe and so does not currently exist within the game. The maximum condition of Melee weapons is 100. Melee weapons degrade according to their material type.
The type of material is set by the most common type of material used within the weapon. Although the Shiv has a metal blade, the handle is made of wood and the binding of string. Therefore, the weapon is considered as Wood.
When making a Melee strike with a firearm, the firearm would be considered as metal.
Once weapons are at 50% condition they will deal 50% (Rounded down) damage. If the weapon reaches 0 or below, the weapon is inoperable and could only be used as spare parts.
Metal – Metal weapons lose condition at 20% (rounded down) of damage dealt.
A player wielding a combat knife hits for 11 points of damage. The weapon loses 11 x 20% = 2.2 points, rounded down to 2. The weapon now has a condition of 98.
Wood – Wooden Weapons lose condition at 50% of damage dealt.
A player wielding a baseball bat hits for 8 damage. The weapon loses 8 x 50% = 4 condition points; the bat now has a condition of 96.
Ranged Weapons – Ranged weapons have a maximum condition of 100. Each weapon has a Wear rating which indicates how quickly it succumbs to Wear and Tear. After each attack, whether successful or not, the wear rating is subtracted from the weapons condition.
Once weapons are at 50% condition they will deal 50% (Rounded down) damage. If the weapon reaches 0 or below, the weapon is inoperable and could only be used as spare parts.
A player fires a Sawn-off Shotgun. The wear rating is 7. 7 is subtracted from the weapons condition rating. The weapons new condition is 93.
Items can be repaired in three ways, using Repair Skill, a Workbench or with Spare Parts. Repairs cannot be completed inside of combat but instead during rest periods. Multiple repair attempts can be made in the same rest period according to the following formula:
Number of repair attempts per 30 mins = repair skill points / 2 (rounded down)
A player with a repair rating of 5 wants to make a number of repair attempts within a short rest. They can therefore complete 5/2 = 2.5, rounded down to 2 attempts during the short rest.
Repair Skill – Outside of battle a player can attempt to repair an item using their repair ability. Players would roll 3D6 and add their repair skill multiplied by 2 to add to the items condition, up to a maximum item condition rating of 75.
Player rolls a total of 9 and has a repair skill of 3. Total condition repaired = 9 + (3*2) = 15. The item will be repaired by 15 points, up to a maximum of 75.
Workbench – Players with a repair skill of 3 or more can use workbenches that they find in the wasteland to repair an item above 75. The formula for calculating the condition improvement is as above, but the repair skill is no longer multiplied by 2.
Player at a work bench rolls a total of 9 and has a repair skill of 3. Total condition repaired = 9 + 3 = 12, up to a maximum of 100.
Spare Parts – Spare parts can be acquired through the looting of fallen enemies and searching through Junk Piles.
The GM describes a new area which includes a small village amongst the terrain. Described along with the ramshackle houses and stores there is a small junk area, behind the trader’s post. The players decide to search the junk pile. A perception test reveals a number of items including a 9mm pistol with a condition of 0. The pistol would be considered as spare parts as it cannot be repaired.
Alternatively, spare parts can be cannibalised from weapons of the same type by a player with a repair skill of 3 or more.
Player loots a 9mm pistol with a condition level of 15. The player has a repair skill of 4 and so they are able to break down the pistol into spare parts to repair their current 9mm pistol.
Once players have spare parts, they repair items in the same way as if they were at a workbench.
The wasteland is covered with the junk and rubbish of the Old World and many of the problems you will face may require some crafting, or you might simply want a super awesome custom item.
Players can use their Repair skills to craft items. Players should describe to the GM what they would like to make and agree with the GM what materials would be required to complete the construction. If agreement cannot be reached, or if the plan is deemed by the GM to be complicated, the player may need to succeed a science test. Once the players have the pieces they need, the players would roll 3d6 + Repair to see if they have successfully crafted the item.
The party decide to make a crude telescope. The Party and GM agree that a pair of glasses and a tube would be the basic materials, likely to be found that could create a simple telescope. The Party locate these items and then roll to try to build the telescope. The GM would then describe how successful this attempt has been.
Crafting will start where the players tell the GM what they would like to build, or what they would like an item to do. The GM will decide how difficult the build would be and what resources are required, but they will not tell the players immediately. Complex items will need a workbench to allow construction, cruder items may be constructed in the field. Some items may need an extended period of construction to complete.
Party members will need to complete either a repair test or a science test to determine whether they know how to construct the item and what resources would be required. Then crafting tests will be completed to determine the success of the craft, the results will also have a bearing on the items condition and stats.
Different party members can complete different parts of the crafting, as befits their stats.
A party member decides they want to add an electric stun to a power fist. The GM agrees that this should be possible with care. The party are asked to complete a science check on how this might be possible. Having passed the science check the party are required to pass a repair/craft test for fitting the electric contacts to the Powerfist. A second test is then required for modifying the power system. If successful, the GM will detail how the item works.
Modified weapons are abundant in the wasteland as survivors look to gain the upper hand over others. Unlike crafting, weapon modifications have a particular set of options, and this is available separately. The GM may also accept requests for custom modifications such as the Powerfist example above.
Modifications can be acquired in two ways; Traders may have modifications ready to sell (with luck!) or ready modified weapons may be found in the field that can be transferred to different weapons.
All modifications will need to be fitted to the weapon which will require a repair check to successfully complete. Alternatively, you may wish to pay for someone to make the modification for you.
If the repair check is unsuccessful, this may cause damage to the weapon or modification, lowering a weapon's condition, or even making the modification useless, or requiring repair in itself. When modifying, players will find it easier to do this at a workbench as opposed to fiddling with screws in the field.
Benefits applied to weapons stack, so a barrel that gives +1 to attack roll and a scope that gives +1 will stack to give +2. The only exception to this is weapon range which can only be increased by a maximum of 25%.
Currently modifications must be purchased or found and can't be created from scrap found in the wasteland. This is avoid having limited inventories filled with junk as unlike the video games, Fast Travel is not an option.
Surviving in the wasteland is tough. Food is in short supply, clean water is even rarer and finding a safe and clean place to sleep at night can be almost as difficult. Races require different amount of food and water to survive each day. Party members also require to sleep to allow them to regain health.
Everyone needs sleep to allow their health to regenerate. You also need to sleep to avoid becoming sleep deprived and have this affect your abilities. A party Members’ SPECIAL Stats will temporarily drop by 1 every hour they are awake above 20. For example, the party could explore for 18 hours before deciding to sleep for the night. One member could take the first two-hour watch without taking any temporary penalties.
As the GM describes the story, they will also describe time passing as the party journeys. Party members will need to rest for 6-8 hours to fully heal and reset any skills or traits that can be used once a day. Party members will also need to eat and drink differing amounts as per their Race.
Humans – 2 Food and 3 drinks
Ghouls – 1 drink and 1 Radiation source (see below)
Super Mutants – 3 Food and 2 drinks
If the party buys food or drink or is able to “loot” food from fallen creatures, this will be measured in portions. Not all creatures can provide edible food for the party. A general rule would be that any creature with “Rad” in its name will be suitable for consumption based on the high radiation levels.
Cannibalism is not generally accepted within the more civilised parts of the wasteland. It is however practised in the more remote areas and cut off areas of the wasteland. Tribals have been known to kill and consume adventurers as a part of their normal diet. Adventurers themselves have been known to eat their companions when desperate enough. If found they claim it was after they died of natural causes though…
If party members do not get enough food or water within a 24-hour period, they will start to be affected. Members SPECIAL Stats will temporarily reduce by 1 every 6 hours until enough food or drink has been consumed to replenish what is required.
Some food and drink in the wasteland is tainted by the background radiation that is still prevalent form the bombs of the Great War, or from unmaintained nuclear sources such as power stations or fusion power sources like cars. While this food and drink is perfectly consumable, radiation will begin to build up within your system (see radiation below).
If through a lack a food or water any party member’s Strength or Endurance falls to 0 then they will die immediately.
As the Resources Wars raged due to the Earth’s dwindling supply of fossil fuels, America, like many other nations in the Old World turned to the wonders of Nuclear Power. 200 years later the Nuclear Fallout of the Great War and unmaintained nuclear power sources mean areas of the wasteland are highly radioactive. Different races react to Radiation in different ways.
Humans – Humans are highly susceptible to radiation poisoning. When ingesting radiated food and drink or entering a radioactive area, the GM will provide the party with information about the levels of radiation affecting them. Radiation poisoning temporarily reduces the affected players Health Points.
The party enters a room which contains a failing reactor that they will attempt to fix. The GM will tell the players what level of radiation poison they are affected by. The longer the players stay in the area the worse they will be affected. The GM will judge how much time passes and so the level of poisoning. The GM will update the party each time the health is affected.
The GM tells the players that they will receive 1 HP of Radiation Poisoning per game minute. The players are in the room for 4 minutes while they try to fix the reactor. All human players will therefore temporarily lose 4 Health Points until the effects of the radiation is removed.
The effects of radiation poison are removed by the players taking the appropriate drugs to heal themselves, or by having a night of sleep.
Ghouls – Ghouls are not affected by radiation in the same way as humans. In fact, it is the opposite. Ghouls must absorb 10% of their total Health Points in radiation per day. If the Ghoul does not take the required levels of radiation, they will begin to feel the effects of starvation/dehydration as above.
Super Mutants – Due to Super Mutant physiology they are resistant to radiation. They take radiation damage at 25% (Rounded down) of the total that a human would.
The Super Mutant enters the reactor room along with the rest of the party. Where the Human members of the party will lose 4HP to Radiation Poisoning, the Super Mutant will lose 1.
The wasteland is mostly lawless and gangs operate freely distributing addictive Drugs called Chems which are almost exclusively used within combat. All Chems have positive initial effects, but carry with them the chance of addiction.
+1 Attack per combat round. +1 Strength, +1 Agility. Roll 1D6 after each combat turn, if 1 then chem wears off. Addiction Rating 4/12. Withdrawal causes -1 Strength, -1 Agility. All actions now Major Actions.
Jet is a powerful chem favoured by raiders and one of the most widely found chem in the wasteland. When inhaled the character gets to make an extra attack per turn, and some of their Special Attributes are increased, perhaps turning the tide in a battle. At the end of the characters turn in combat they will roll a ‘Chem Die’ of 1d6, if they roll a 1 then the effect of the Chem wears off and they will return to normal. Once the Chem has worn off Characters have a choice of taking more the Chem, or taking an Addiction Test. All Chems, with the exception of Mentats and alcohol, wear off at the conclusion of combat.
Addiction – Whenever a Chem wears off the user will roll to see if they are addicted to the chem. All Addiction Ratings take the form of a fraction devisable by 12. Characters will roll 2D6 then add 0.5 X Willpower and compare their roll with the addiction rating to judge whether they have become addicted.
A player uses Jet in combat and Rolls a 1 on their Chem Die which removes the effect of the Chem. They then roll 2D6 + 0.5 X Willpower scoring a 5, therefore beating the Addiction rating of the Chem. They will be able to continue with no ill effects.
The effects of Chems are accumulative, each time that a character takes a Chem the Numerator of the addiction rating will increase by 1. The formula for Jet after two hits becomes (4+1)/12, 3 hits would be (4+2)/12.
A player uses Jet in combat and Rolls a 1 on their Chem Die which removes the effect of the Chem. They decide to take another hit of Jet to prolong the effects. The next turn the player again rolls a 1 on their Chem Die and the effects wear off. The player then rolls 2D6, scoring a 5, and so the roll is tied. In this case the character fails their Addiction and so would be considered Addicted to Jet.
Withdrawal – When in withdrawal the negative effects of the Chem is applied to the character. This negative effect will last until the character has a full sleep, as detailed in the Survival Section.
Jet addiction is more serious. Sleep will not cure it. An antidote for Jet is available throughout the wasteland and is the only thing that will remove an addiction to Jet.
As the party explores the wasteland they will get to know one another they will develop and hone their skills.
The GM will dictate when players have levelled up in order that the party make up remains balanced. When party members increase in level they will receive 1 S.P.E.C.I.A.L points to add to their statistics, up to a maximum of 10. Party members will also receive 3 points to add to their skills. Note: Certain traits will affect what points the party gain.
Every three levels (this may vary by race) you may choose a Perk. Perks work in a similar way to Traits and can affect characters in different ways. Players can choose any Perk that they meet the skill requirements and have a level equal to or higher than the level required. Perks are listed separately.
Humans will gain a perk every three levels, while Super Mutants earn them at every 4 levels. Ghouls do not earn Perks as they slowly rot away…
As detailed above, when characters roll doubles (or use the finesse perk) they will be able to complete powerful action Stunts. The number preceding the stunt details the ‘cost’ of the stunt and characters can use multiple stunts per round. The GM will decide what list of stunts the players can use. Cost Stunt
Wilson’s Water and Weapons
The party begin the game as new recruits of Wilson’s Water and Weapons. Wilson’s employment contracts are fairly generous compared to most within the wasteland.
Equipment – All employees have the opportunity to buy equipment directly from Wilson’s Water and Weapons and all equipment is in an ‘as new’ condition. Party members have access to this equipment while at one of Wilson’s depots or offices and while travelling with any of Wilson’s Trade Caravans. Wilson also provides rations to his employees to ensure they are kept healthy, and working. Employees are permitted to take 2 days of food and water with them should they ever be on assignment that takes them away from one of Wilson’s facilities or if they leave a trade caravan on Wilson’s Water and Weapons orders.
Payment – Wilson pays his employees for specific tasks, not a guaranteed daily wage. Part of the payment will always be upfront, with the remainder paid upon return from their assignment. Please note: Wilson will not pay out for employees who are killed in the line of completing an assignment. Wilson pays for results and has no time for heart bleeding stories about widows and orphans. Wilson also reserves the right to deduct money, or fine employees for not completing assignments within agreed parameters.
Sick Pay – There is no Sick Pay.
Exclusivity – Wilson appreciates loyalty from his employees, but not enough to subsidise employees by paying them when there is no work to be done. To that end, employees are allowed to work for other organisations and private persons. However, any actions taken against Wilson’s Water and Weapons, or working with competitors will affect any future work with Wilson’s Water and Weapons.
Pension Scheme – There is no Company Pension Scheme
Confidentiality – Wilson expects that employees keep all confidential company information confidential. Attempts to gain access to restricted areas will be met with force. Wilson reserves the right to dispatch tracking teams to bring in anyone suspected of working against the company’s interests.
Holidays – There are no paid holidays.