Sunday, October 2, 2011

Where was I?

Well, after over a month's lapse, I'm back at it again: working on A Band of Joyous Heroes! I left off where I was about to substitute Reputation(REP), as used by the THW family of games, with something with a little bit more of a Tékumel flavour. What I decided on was to use the "Five Selves" as the character's basic stats. Some attempts have been done in the past to do this - this is my effort:

The Five Selves

The "five selves" represent the Tsolyáni concept of the Soul. It is divided into five parts:

The Bákte [BAHK-tay] - The Body

The physical body. When the individual dies this is the part that stays behind and eventually decays. In BOJH terms, Bákte (or Body, if you prefer) will be used for anything physical - fighting, climbing, swimming and the like.

The Chusétl [choo-SAYTL] - The Shadow Self

This is the dream-self of the character that inhabits his dreams and can interact with illusions and the astral plane. In BOJH, certain spells allow the character's Chusétl (or Shadow Self) to go forth and interact with the world. No magic can be cast by the Chusétl, and injuries suffered are suffered physically by the Bákte. If the Shadow Self is slain so is the character. Likewise, when an individual dies so does the Chusétl.

The Hlákme [HLAWK-may] - The Intellect

This is the character's conscious mind, intellect and sense of self. It does not include his knowledge and memories which are part of the Balétl (or Spirit Soul, see below.) In BOJH terms, the Hlákme (or Intellect) stat is used for anything requiring the mind - spell casting, language use, social challenges. It might possibly get a bit grey at times, but we'll run with it for the time being. When a person dies the Hlákme becomes dormant adjacent to the body and may be re-inserted by necromancy.

The Pedhétl [pay-THAYTL] - The Psychic Reservoir, or Power

Referred to as "the Enemy", the Pedhétl represent the raw emotions possessed by an individual. Additionally, it represents the amount of other-planar power stored in the individual that may be used for casting magic. In BOJH terms it functions just as that, and is used as the basis for spell casting.

The Balétl [bah-LAYTL] - The Spirit Soul

The Balétl is the part of the individual that travels on to the after-life. It comprises all his knowledge and memories. The Spirit Soul can be communicated with after death through the use of magic. Spells can also be used to restore a Spirit Soul to it's body. Other spells can expel a Spirit Soul from it's body and allow another to inhabit it. If the Balétl is destroyed the individual ceases to exist - there is no after-life for them! Few things can totally destroy the Spirit Soul, fortunately. Only the Temple of Wurú possesses a spell that will destroy the Balétl. Called the Tathyánikh [tath-YAN-eek], or the Grey Hand, the spell makes high ranking sorcerers from the temple justifiably feared.

I'll provide a bit more how this will work in a little bit...


  1. Could you give us some examples of how these are used in game?

  2. I was going to get to that eventually, but briefly, they function much as Rep is used in THW. The stat is the number of dice one gets when making opposed challenge rolls. Both sides roll xd6, with x often being their Rep, plus modifiers for situations. A roll of 1-3 = success, 4-6 = failure. Both sides count their successes. Sometimes there is a single roll off, others (as in melee) they take their successful dice and roll again. Each roll-off constitutes a melee round and they keep going until one of both sides have zero successes. At that point the side with remaining successes determines the level of success based on the number they have remaining.

    My intent is to use BODY for combat and physical challenges (Strength, Agility, etc.)

    Intellect will be used for spell casting and intelligence and social challenges.

    Pedhelt is also used in spell casting. It provides the base dice, and Intellect + the number of successes rolled determine casting success.

    The Shadow Self is used in certain spells for anything Body or Intellect might be used for. I also envision that certain drugs might allow one to dream-walk as well. It is also conceivable that certain creatures or spell might attack through ones dreams.

    The Spirit Soul is used for those spells where it is placed into another body. I think one would use the BODY stat of the host, and possibly the Intellect, but also the Spirit Soul of the interloper. Thee is a bit of overlap between Intellect and Spirit Soul and that still needs to be looked at a bit. Additionally, when contacting the spirits of the dead, the Spirit Soul stat would be used.

    Does this help?