Actuating Acronyms: Synth Titles (Vault #30)

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It’s been awhile since we’ve posted some entries in The Vault, noble adventurers! With this addition we’ll be adding a series built for and around The Future expansion, shipped recently to all Kickstarter backers. We hope you enjoy them!

The Synthetics of The Future are often hyperefficient, inscrutable, and chilling in their goals and objectives, especially in relation to organics. Some have been built for use by the biological races, while others have long out-survived (or perhaps exterminated) their fleshly progenitors. Below are 20 Titles to give your Synths some personality and variation. As always, we’ve provided the formatting for you to copy and paste into the Quest Creator, speeding up your crafting.

  1. _EU_ (#EU) The Elimination Units began as an attempt to unify galactic currency, but an error in programming led them to target all currency holders instead. Oops. * At the beginning of combat, each adventurer with a Loot item takes 1 damage per item.

  2. _Alpha Control_ (#Alpha) The central Synth unit, guiding the actions of all others in this place. * While “Alpha Control” is in play, all Synth Encounter types take -1 damage from non-Tech abilities.

  3. _U.T.D._ (#UTD) Built for training purposes, the Unified Teaching Droid seeks to perfect its subjects, though over the millenia it’ has lost the capacity to discern where the line between ‘creative destruction’ and ‘destruction’ lies. * When the U.T.D. is defeated, all adventurers advance one skill one rating level.

  4. _Probebot_ (#Probe) By the stars, don’t let it near you! * While Probebot is in play, if an adventurer with an “Athletic” Skill takes damage, reduce their skill rating by 1. When Probebot is no more, restore the skill rating to its original level.

  5. _M.A.V. Unit_ (#MAV) Bristling with blades and saws, the Multi Armed Vivisection Unit “catalogs” and studies organic life forms, often while they are still (temporarily) alive. * If M.A.V. is attacked with a Melee ability, the adventurer using that ability loses 1 skill rating until the end of combat.

  6. _SLiP U._ (#Freudian) The Semantic Liberation interspecies Psychology Unit assaults you with dirty jokes and disturbing innuendo. * When SLiP enters play, all adventurers make a Persona or Skill roll. If they roll 14 or below, reduce their Persona or Skill level by 1.

  7. _L.E.V.I._ (#Levi) Before the last enemy fizzles into stillness it utters a cryptic message, “You may have defeated us, but LEVI is coming for you…” * The Lethal Emulation Vehicle & Infiltrator attacks with surprise from in your midst. All Adventurers make a Charisma skill roll. On an 11 or below, the first Ability they play this round is played as though they rolled a “1”.

  8. _NIFLM_ (#Nephelim) An assault of laser bursts both disorienting and harmful pulses from the Negative Impulse Feedback Laser Machine. * The 2nd round of combat, deal this Encounter card’s Tier value in damage to each adventurer, minus the rating of that adventurer’s Knowledge skill.

  9. _IU_ (#IU) The Interdiction Unit emits powerful EM fields that inhibit your performance. * While the IU is in play, all skill checks are made with a penalty equal to half this unit’s Tier value.

  10. _”Overlord”_ (#Overlord) The speakers on this synth begin playing a looped message, Bow to Overlord, serve your Master, meatbag!” * Every other round while “Overlord” is functional, add a “Custodian Pod” to combat and update the Tier Sum.

  11. _T.U._ (#TU) Quantum teleportation is the Transportation Unit’s forte. * Whenever an adventurer rolls 5, 10, or 15, they are teleported across the area and cannot use an offensive ability the next round.

  12. _HK-007_ (#Hunter Killer) The ubiquitous presence of such an alcohol-powered unit suggests that science and technology have not made us any less barbaric or any more “humane”. * Deal 1 damage to anyone that plays a Tech ability, unless they roll a 20.

  13. _H.L.P.R_ (#Helper) The Haptic Life Pro Regulator unleashes a burst of healing energy. *All non-Synths in play (including the adventurers) recover 1 health every Surge round.

  14. _UniH8R_ (#Haters) Driven insane by centuries of isolation, this Synth seeks to irradiate any intelligence that crosses its path. * On the first round of combat, deal 1 point of damage/Tech ability in an adventurer’s hand, and 1 point of damage/Tier to any other Encounter card in play (UniH8R does attack itself).

  15. _Lovebot 5000_ (#Lovebot) It wants hugs… * All adventurers without a Charisma skill take 2 damage on the second round of the encounter with Lovebot. Adventurers with Charisma skills can deal automatic “damage” to Lovebot equal to their skill rating instead of playing an ability each round.

  16. _PCU_ (#PCU) The Power Control Unit sends a surge of energy crackling through all mechanical devices. * Synths Surge on round 2 and 4 instead of 3 and 6. On those rounds, any player that successfully rolls to use a Tech ability uses the ability as though they rolled a “20”.

  17. _The Bladed Butcher_ (#Blades) A terrifying metal monstrosity festooned in rotting gore. It smells like an open grave. * Adventurers must make a Knowledge skill or Persona check of 10 or more. On a failure, they reduce the skill or Persona by 1.

  18. _Q.A.E._ (#QAE) The Quantum Anomaly Eliminator seeks to extirpate dangerous threats to galactic Constants. * Any Adventurer using a Magic ability takes 1 damage.

  19. _O.D.I.N._ (#ODIN) Operating from high on the Orbital Stream, the Organically Distributed Intelligence Network boosts efficacy of all cybernetic and synthetic systems. * All adventurers gain 1 to a skill rating while ODIN is in proximity. All Synthetic Encounter cards gain 1 Tier while ODIN is in proximity.

  20. _Stone Age_ (#Stone) Designed to counter the encroachment of self-destructive tech, the entity now known as “Stone Age” suppresses all Tech and advanced Loot. * While “Stone Age” is in play, Tech abilities cannot employ their roll “20” power and Future Loot loses 1 use or buried card.

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Abominable [The Vault # 23]

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The Horrors wait. They ruled once. Whether they left or were driven away is unknown. What is certain is that they wish to return. Some say such a return is inevitable. Woe to all mankind if that is true...

This week we finish up our cycle dealing with the Horrors. Below, partake of 20 Titles to add flavor and terrible power to these new antagonists:

  1. _The Gibbering Dread_ (#Gib) It belches a cacophony of mad voices, which can be stemmed only by death. > :Music: and :Magic: abilities suffer a -2 to rolls while the gibbering thing lives.

  2. _The Grotesque_ (#Grot) Hideous to behold, this thing's insides are on the exterior. The smell matches the sight. > All abilities used against it except :Influence: and :music: suffer a -2 to :roll:.

  3. _Half-Dead_ (#HalfDead) After eons even death may die...this one is waking again to life. > Reduce Tier by 1 and hp by 3.

  4. _The Unhinged_ (#Unhinged) Some of the Horrors are cold and calculating, others quite mad. > Gains +1 damage to attacks. Every other round :roll:. On a 10 or above it attacks another encounter card in addition to the :adventurers:.

  5. _The Raving_ (#Raving) Compelling in its terror and power, for the line between madness and genius is a fine one. > :Influence: abilities suffer -2 to rolls while the raving one is alive.

  6. _Mindeater_ (#Mindeater) Bodies aren't the only things that can be devoured. > Every :adventurer: who rolls a 5, 10, or 15 on an ability suffers a loss of 1 Persona. The Mindeater gains 2 hp from each Persona devoured.

  7. _Contagion's Consort_ (#Contagion) It's mere glance inflicts weakness upon others. > The :adventurer: with the lowest roll each round suffers -1 to rolls and loses 1 hp.

  8. _Dream Dweller_ (#DDweller) Even if vanquished physically, it'll continue to haunt you. > Physical death doesn't destroy it, only banish it for a time.

  9. _The Chained Lord_ (#ChainedL) It has one foot in this world, but is still partially chained in another. > Each round :roll: once before resolving damage to adventurers. On a 5, 10, or 15, the :horror: can't deal damage to one adventurer.

  10. _Realm Reaver_ (#RReaver) Space warps about it. > When an adventurer :roll: a 5, 10, or 15, their ability affects another :adventurer: as well as the intended target.

  11. _The Servile_ (#Servile) Cowed in mind and spirit, it knows only to serve strength. > An :adventurer: with max Persona can intimidate it into service or flight on a :roll: of 10 or above.

  12. _Soul Stealer_ (#SStealer) It keeps what it kills. > Slain :adventurer:s become Tier 1 :horror:s the round after being reduced to 0 hp.

  13. _Many Mouthed_ (#MMouthed) So many fangs, so much hunger... > Any :adventurer: making a :melee: attack against the Many-Mouthed suffers 1 hp damage.

  14. _Gelatinous_ (#Gel) It would be easy to drown in its depths. > The :horror: has 2 fewer hp. Those attacking it with :melee: abilities or who take damage this round suffer an extra point of damage.

  15. _Nightmare_ (#Nightmare) It seems to take the form of what you fear most. > Any :adventurer: attacking the Nightmare this round suffers -3 to their rolls. On a 1, they also lose their next action (in addition to whatever normal ability failure occurs).

  16. _Terror Tyrant_ (#TTyrant) Fear is the foundation of all tyranny, and often its motivator, too. > The first round of combat, :adventurers: below base persona cannot use abilities.

  17. _The Inscrutable_ (#Inscrutable) How does one defeat a foe with unreadable features? > All :adventurers: suffer -1 to all rolls against it, both combat and skill checks.

  18. _The Compelling_ (#Compelling) It seems to know your every mood and intention and is unperturbed by all. > Its allies increase in Tier value by half while it lives (do not round up).

  19. _The Devourer_ (#Dev) Fear not the one who can devour only the flesh, but the one who can consume both mind and soul...> On a :roll: of 5, 10, or 15, on abilities, :adventurer:s lose 1 :loot: or 3 hp.

  20. _Fleshfuser_ (#FleshF) Slamming into one of you, the :horror: begins to meld with you. > The adventurer with the lowest ability :roll: is bound to the creature, taking half the damage dealt to it next round.

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* Confused by the formatting of the list? The _underscores_ (#hashtags) :icons: and > Special instruction scripts are provided for the ease of Quest Authors, who can copy and paste these directly into the Quest Creator to save time. 

Beastly [The Vault #20]

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We'll finish our cycle of Horror themed Vaults in a month or two, after you've gotten more familiar with the cards and they've lost their gloss, but today we'll give a grooming to a standard Encounter type from the base deck: Beasts!

As part of a Horror-themed quest or game, you could add one of these titles to a beast corrupted by the Horrors. We present twenty Titles to spice up Beastly foes!

  1. _Bristlecoat_ (#Bristle) The arrows and bolts of past victims testify to its deadliness. > Loses 2 hp. Anyone using a :melee: attack against it suffers 1 damage.

  2. _Bonecrusher_ (#Bone) A bone cracked for its marrow dangles from its jaws. > Each round damage is dealt, one adventurer takes an additional 1 point of damage.

  3. _The Ghost_ (#BeastGhost) It makes no noise, and indeed disappears with ease. > The first round of combat, those that fail a Notice :ranged: check equal to 10+ it's Tier are caught unawares and cannot use abilities.

  4. _RazorTooth_ (#Razor) Every sharp tooth gleams in the light. > Increase damage dealt at the end of the round by 1.

  5. _Ironhide_ (#Ironhide) It's thickened, scar covered hide is resistant to damage. > Reduce all damage suffered by Ironhide by 1.

  6. _The Darkness_ (#Darkness) It blends in to its surroundings, making it harder to track and hit. > Non :melee: abilities suffer a -2 to rolls.

  7. _Bloody Maw_ (#Maw) It's been feasting... > All adventurers must make a Persona :roll: equal to 10+it's Tier Value (gain +1 for every level above base Persona or -1 for each below it). On a failure lose 1 Persona.

  8. _The Black Pack_ (#Pack) There are many of them and they've become accustomed to killing together. > Lower each ability :roll: by 1 for each member of the pack.

  9. _The Hounding Fury_ (#Fury) It targets the strongest among you with relentless cunning. > The :adventurer: with the highest hp takes 1 extra damage this round.

  10. _Lockjaw_ (#Lockjaw) Once it bites it won't let go until one of you is dead. > The adventurer with the lowest ability :roll: on the first round becomes the target of Lockjaw. They lose 1 Persona per round until Lockjaw is dead.

  11. _The Screamers_ (#Screamers) The sound of the hunt is terrifying and close, cacophonous and unnatural. > All :music: and :influence: abilities suffer a -3 to rolls. Each round, one :music: or :influence: failure becomes a critical failure (1).

  12. _Poisontongue_ (#Poisontongue) A nasty green froth coats its tongue and teeth. > Anyone taking damage from Poisontongue suffers the effects of poison (we will have a future Vault post with 20 to choose from) or loss of 1 Persona and -1 to all rolls until healed.

  13. _The Clutching Dread_ (#Dread) It wraps you in a crushing embrace. > The :adventurer: with the lowest roll on the first round is tackled. Any attacks made against the Beast also effect that :adventurer: on a roll of 10 or 15.

  14. _The Phantom_ (#PhantomBeast) It's almost supernatural in its ability to strike then fade away. > On being reduced below half hp, choose one :adventurer: to make a :melee: roll. On a :roll: below 10+it's Tier level, it disengages and escapes. On the next combat encounter, add The Phantom to the battle, having restored it's hp to 3/4 full.

  15. _Once-Man_ (#Once) Cursed long ago into the form of a Beast, it has retained its cunning in the ways of men. > The :adventurer: with the second highest ability :roll: each round finds that the beast deftly avoids their attack.

  16. _Deathclaw_ (#Deathclaw) Massive and powerful beyond what is normal for its kind. > Every other round, the two adventurers with the lowest ability :roll: s each suffer 1 hp of damage from the raking claws.

  17. _Eyebiter_ (#Eyebiter) It goes straight for the face, every time. > Once per round, if the :adventurer: with the lowest ability roll takes any damage, they also suffer damage to their eyes. For the remainder of combat anyone so damaged suffers -4 to all rolls (until healed).

  18. _The Ever-Hungry_ (#Everhungry) It's been eating well, and often, though such seems not to have slaked its gluttony. > Two rounds after the first :adventurer: suffers damage, this Beast catches the scent and comes to feast. Add a Beast of Tier equal to the highest already in the Encounter, then update the Tier sum and add another +1 to it.

  19. _The Cursed Pack_ (#CPack) It's said any man that strikes down one of these profane beasts will be plagued by ill luck. > Any time an :adventurer: kills a member of the Cursed Pack they suffer a -1 to all rolls afterward (until the curse has been broken, perhaps with a :magic: check above 10+it's Tier value--only one attempt may be made per quest). Curses are cumulative.

  20. _The Mangy_ (#Mangy) It's been healthier and less irritable... > Reduce the tier value by 1 and reset it.

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