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The Pitt

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  • Lowell Boston
    The Pitt You wake up to the sounds of the crowds, a roar of white noise that rocks the air with a life of its own. Slowly you rise, confused by your
    Message 1 of 2 , Apr 2, 2005
      The Pitt

          You wake up to the sounds of the crowds, a roar of white noise that rocks the air with a life of its own. Slowly you rise, confused by your surroundings. You had been traveling through an uncharted Quantum Zone, a necessary short cut in order to reach your destination by your appointed time. You remember
      the voice of your vessel's Master Synth warning of the approach of an unidentified vessel, and then...

          "Pick up your weapon... barbaric scum," challenges the being before you.

          A sandy floor surrounds you for hundreds of meters in all directions until they end against thick, marble walls. Twenty meters high the top holds the slanted seats of a packed arena that continues to climb to a dizzying height. The air deflates from your lungs. The auditorium is magnificent, like nothing you've ever seen, holding what you imagine to be nearly five hundred thousand sentient beings. Suddenly, it hits you - you know where you are. A place of infamous legend, and horrible repute.

      The Pitt. The K'tan Gladiatorial Arena.

          "Pick up your weapon, SCUM," growls the being again. Your sight strays to the ground where you spot your blade and side arm, the standard weapons of your Empire. Your immediate fate has never been more clear. Cautiously, you reclaim your weapons. To your surprise you find that you are still in the same uniform you wore before being - high jacked - perhaps the best word for what's happened to you.

          The being before you is armed with a bladed weapon of its own. A small sidearm is holstered on its leg, over a scattered plating of tough looking armor. The ground suddenly shakes as a scattered array of obstacles rise form the sands - half walls, rocks, fallen tress and artificial hillocks, the chaotic terrain of a battlefield.

          "FREEDOM OR DEATH... FREEDOM OR DEATH," chants the crowd.

          Behind your opponent an image hovers in the air, your ship safely moored in an orbiting space dock.
      Your prize, and ticket to freedom should you survive - will survive, you strongly decide. With a surge of determination you fall into a well practice battle stance. At once a hushness falls across the arena until the only thing you can hear is the beat of your heart. Above you something suddenly flutters and falls; a single black feather. Your opponent follows its descent, muscles tensing, weapons gripped. Somehow you know the moment it touches the ground the battle will begin.


          Hello, and welcome to The Pitt: The Chronicles of the K'tan Arena. This will be my second attempt to create a LS playing game using a dice generation system (I think I've found another one that will be more reliable than the last). The Pitt will also be a sporting way to generate more LS activity. Here's how you play.

          Each member will play a character who has suddenly found themselves absconded and forcibly placed as
      a participant in the K'tan Gladiator Arena. The rules are simple - one must battle an opponent in a fight to the death in order to earn their freedom. However, ascension from The Pitt is done on the bones of others. One victory is only one rung in the ladder to emancipation.

          Any established Starshield race/character maybe used, however the nature of The Pitt only allows for physical combat. Players begins by building a Combat Pool by selecting from several Character Classes. Each class has pro and cons applied to them, as well as the number of Victory Points needed to escape The Pitt.

          After10 Characters Classes are selected and generated combat can begin. The intent of the game is to earn 25 Victory Points through combat. Once a player has earned this number freedom is granted to the entire Pool. During combat melee a player however may decide what spoils they will keep for their pool in the event of a victory. Victory in combat generally results in an opponent being knocked unconscious or gravely wounded. At this point the victory may decided the following:

      Death - Their opponent is killed, and the appropriate Victory Points are awarded.
      Spare - An opponent's life is spared. The victor may decided to:

          1) Claim the defeated opponent into their own pool where they will now fight for their own team.
          No Victory Points are earned.
          2) Claim an opponent's weapons, allowing their opponent to return to their own Combat Pool.
          Half Victory Points are earned.

          A Combat Pool may only have 1 Champion, and 2 Elites. However, a Combat Pool may be formed out of all of the remaining four other Character Classes if a player so chooses, without any Champions, or Elites. After arean victories a player's Combat Pool may also grow above 10. Below is a detailed list and explanation of each Character Class.

      Character Classes



      As the name implies Civilian characters are unskilled fighters, and as such may only use Street Fighting skills. However, after 3 victories they will automatically be bestowed a +1 bonus on offensive and defensive rolls. Victory Points - 10


      Crewmen are generally the enlisted members of a civilian, military, or merchant vessel. As such they do possess some combat skills. Due to their propensity to learn and apply technical skills, Crewmen always receive +1 attack bonuses. Crewmen may choose either Boxing or Grappling fighting skills.
      Victory Points - 8


      Officers have earned their rank generally through the successful completion of officer training programs through academies or apprenticeships. For most this also includes tactical combat and warfare skills. As such Officers are able to apply +1 defense bonus. They are also allowed to choose one of the following Hand-to-Hand skills: boxing, grappling, and basic martial arts. Officers may also use bladed weapons in combat.
      Victory Points - 6


      Combatants are trained soldiers serving onboard ships. As such they are the offensive/defensive backbones of a crew. Trained in many battle forms, combatants receive +1 on both offensive and defensive rolls. Also, they are able to choose one of the following forms of Hand-to-Hand skills: boxing, grappling, basic martial arts, and advance martial arts. Like Officers, Combatants may use bladed weapons, but in addition projectile weapons are added to their skills.
      Victory points - 4


      Elites are the special forces of an Empire's military service. Highly skill in numerous forms of combat Elites will perhaps be the deadliest opponent one may face in The Pitt due to the fact that they receive +2 bonus on both Offensive and Defensive skills. Elites may choose from one of the following H-t-H skills: boxing, grappling, basic martial arts, advance martial arts, and Supreme martial arts. Bladed, and projectile weapons may be used in addition to bludgeon weapons.
      Victory Points - 2


      A Champion is literally the best of the best. Captains of Elite squads, martial arts masters, or perhaps individuals who have earned their rank through years of combat in The Pitt. To face a Champion in combat
      is tantamount to a death sentence. Champions receive a +2 bonus on all rolls, no matter what. They are able
      to use any H-T-H combat skills in addition to a Master Skill - this is unique form of martial arts either known, or created solely by the Champion. Proficient with blade, projectile, and bludgeon weapons, the Champion always kills his/her/its opponent and is allowed to take their weapons too. If defeated and spared a Champion is reduced to a Elite rank causing a loss of all Champion abilities.
      Victory Points - 1.

          Next, players then determine how much Life Force each Character possesses. This is determined by rolling 4 six sided dice and adding up their totals for each Character in a pool. During Combat when a player's Life Force drops to zero, or lower, they have been knocked unconscious. Their fate is then in the hands of their opponent's sense of mercy - unless they are facing a Champion. A victory will also earn a player medical treatment where their original Life Force is restored.

      Combat Systems

      Hand-To-Hand Combat

      Street Fighting +1 Att.
      Boxing +1 Def., +1 Damage
      Grappling +3 Damage
      Basic Martial Arts +1 Att., +2 Damage
      Advance Martial Arts +2 Att., +2 Disarm*
      Supreme Martial Arts +3 Att.
      Master Skills +2 Def., +3 Damage

      *To disarm an opponet an attacker must claim that as their offensive intention. A succesful room means that an opponet has lost their weapon and will be unable to use it for the remainder of combat.

      Bladed Weapons

      Combat Dagger +1 damage
      One-handed Sword + 1 Att. + 2 Disarm
      Two-handed Sword* +1 Def. +3 Damage
      Battle Axe* +3 Damage

      *Two handed weapons count as two weapons.

      Projectile Weapons

      Stiletto Darts + 1 Att.  - Quarrel of 12
      Throwing blades +1 Att., +1 Damage - Cluster of 5
      Bow +2 Att., + 2 Disarm  - Quarrel of 8,
      Cross Bow +2 Att., +2 Damage - Quarrel of 4
      Battle Javelins +2 Def.  - Quarrel of 3

      Bludgeon Weapons

      Battle Club +1 Att., +1 Damage
      Battle Staff +1 Def., +1 Damage
      War Hammer/Mace +2 Damage
      Battle Spear +2 Att., +1 Def
      Trident +2 Def., +1 1 Att.
      Morning Star* + 3 Damage
      Cat-o-Nine-Tails whip +3

      *Two handed weapon that counts as two weapons.

      Side Arms (All Character Classes may use side arms)

      Slug Thrower + 3 Damage - 6 shots
      Laser Pistol + 3 Att.  +1 Damage  - 3 shots
      Energy Blaster  +4 Damage  - 3 Shots
      Grenade Launcher  +5 Damage  - 2 shots
      Mobile Energy Cannon +10 Damage -1 Shot

          A Combat Pool is given an arsenal of 20 weapons. Depending on the number of victories, this number may raise or lower. Characters may choose any two weapons from their arsenal - one from each weapon group, but only the ones that they are rated to use. For example, Civilians are unable to use blade, projectile, or bludgeon weapons, but they may choose any two side arms.

          Combat begins when player's select one character from their Combat Pool to face another opponent. Combat is started by an initiative roll of 2 six side dice. The highest roller wins and begins with their attack. Combat begins in this fashion:

      Attacker - Rolls three dice, and adds the highest two, plus bonuses.
      Defender  - Rolls two dice and adds bonus.

      If the Attacker has the higher score they then roll a single die for damages, plus added bonuses. This number is then subtracted from the opponent's Life Force. If this number stands above zero combat comtinues. If a character's Life Force is 0 or lower, then the victor decides his/her/it's fate.

      In the event of a tie roll a grapple or disorientation has occurred in the battle and a new initiative roll must be made to see who gains the attack.

      The attacking player will continue to attack until the Defender's roll beats them, or they lose an initiative roll. At this point the defender gains the offensive and is able to roll with three dice.



      Character Bonuses:

      Hand-To-Hand Combat skills:

      Weapon Skills.

      Victories Won:

      Sample Character Sheet

      NAME: Captain Duncan Colford
      CLASS: Officer
      RACE: Human
      EMPIRE: August Empire of Archaen
      LIFE FORCE: *

      *octoberstudios@... requested that 1 roll of 4 6-sided dice be rolled.

      Roll them bones ... your dice are

      Roll 1: 2, 6, 3, 6 = 17.

      Mail was sent to you at octoberstudios@....

      Life Force equals 17

      Character Bonuses: Officer +1 Defense.

      Hand-To-Hand Combat Skills: (As an officer Colford may choose either Boxing, Grappling or Basic Martial Arts. Colford picks Boxing.)
      Boxing +1 Def. (+2 w/ Character Bonus), +1 Damage.

      Weapons: (As an Officer Colford is able to use bladed weapons and a side arm. He chooses a one-handed sword, and a Laser pistol).
      One-Handed Sword +1 Att., Laser Pistol +3 Att., +1 Damage.

      Victories Won: 0

      To access the on-line dice generator click on this link: http://www.irony.com/mailroll.html
      Follow the instruction for selecting your dice, and bonuses, then have the results sent to you, and your opponent's E-mail address. Post the results on the list serve for our audience to see. That's it. Captain Colford is waiting for any challengers.

      The Feather is falling.


      None of these rules are written in stone. I'd love to hear feedback from anyone, or volunteers to beta test this system.


    • Mark de Vries
      ... Interesting idea, but I am not sure if I can take part of it. No Luhin would be taken alive unless she wanted to, and the K tan they would not want to live
      Message 2 of 2 , May 16, 2005
        On Sun 03 Apr, Lowell Boston wrote:
        > The Pitt

        Interesting idea, but I am not sure if I can take part of it.
        No Luhin would be taken alive unless she wanted to, and the
        K'tan they would not want to live for. That does not mean they
        are invincible, but just that they would make sure their
        technology is destroyed before being captured. Even if stunned
        they would resume fighting the moment they were released. And
        they would not play along in the hope to survive, but rather
        aim to take as many enemies with them as they could.

        The precursor of the Luhin nations are an even worse candidate
        because they scare even Omnet :) The biggest problem here is
        the complete inability to communicate. Not to mention the
        nasty fact that they can manipulate perception and emotions
        of a significant portion of all known sentient races, including
        those of humans (which means they can probably affect 90pct or
        so of all sentient beings). Even assuming the K'tan pitt master
        would be successful in explaining to one of them that they
        must fight, they simply would not comply. Or perhaps would, by
        causing massive riots in the stands. Or tear off the head of
        the guards. But they could equally decide to just leave, turn
        themselves effectively invisible by suppressing any thoughts
        of them in sentients nearby. All Omnet had been able to find
        out about them was that they were intelligent, unable to
        communicate in any language (certainly unwilling to try) and
        did behave erratically without anybody being able to find out
        some kind of rationale to their actions.

        Retired Libris Grandis of the Codex Stellarus
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