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🎨 Creative I'm building a system... For Anime Fantasy combat!

jakinbandw

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So I wrote up a design doc for my game a while back with a list of all concepts that I was considering for my fantasy game. However the list is too big. When building characters a player picks 3 concepts that they want for the character, so they need a lot of options. But as it is right now each Concept takes a full 2 pages each (one page double sided to make it easy to print and keep around). Right now I have around 60 concepts, and I want to pair that down to 45, with 10 in most categories. So, with that said, I am going to list them all with a line or two description, and ask for advice on what to keep and what to drop.

Professions
These are fairly broad, fairly mundane concepts. They are fairly common in the world and you will run into a bunch of level 0 npcs with these. They do scale to the same power as other abilities, with a bit less direct power, but a bit more breadth.
  • Street Rat This is for people who live on the streets of cities. Either stealing, or surviving through quick wits, and always knowing ways to get in, and out of places.
  • Soldier This is for a soldier. I already have this concept written up and would hate to drop it. He eventually leads armies.
  • Woodsman This is for people who live on the edge of the wilds. The wilderness holds no fear for them and they are expert hunters.
  • Guard This is for people of the town watch, or protectors of important people. Either way they are good investigators and great at protecting others.
  • Scholar This guy knows everything about everything. While not great in combat, he can point out weaknesses, and his reputation can get him in almost anywhere.
  • Artificer A catch all term for crafters. He designs and builds items, eventually creating brand new inventions whole cloth.
  • Noble Wealth is a useful tool. A noble has grace, social acumen, and loyal followers. Not great at combat, but great where social abilities are called for.
  • Trader He's been around and knows all the rumors. He knows how to keep himself safe on the road, and he always has what you need, and a lot of wealth to boot!
  • Priest While not divinely blessed (usually) a priest can convert others to their faith, provide healing and comfort, and has no issues when dealing with society. (And can raise an angry mob in a pinch!)
  • Ritualist Able to do magic through long study, the ritualist does enchantments and large slow workings. It's not flashy magic, and it takes time and help, but it can do very impressive feats.
  • Knight A Knight is a defender of the nation, and a leader of men. He tends to ride into battle and protects his allies. Off the battlefield the title of knight allows him power in social situations.



Classes
These are closer to normal DnD classes. High on combat power, but usually a bit more narrow.
  • Enhancer The enhancer empowers others through spirit magic while only slightly enhancing themselves
  • Blade Master I already have half this concept written up so I'd hate to toss it. A Blade Master moves quickly around the battle field and has a bunch of special stances and moves to be even more effective.
  • Mage A person with formal training in magic. A mage needs prep time, and lacks sheer power, but can draw spells from the entire sorcery list (a set of concepts after this one). They do so on a weaker level then proper sorcerers though
  • Necromancer Raise Dead, Summon Undead, Throw an undending wave of undead at foes. Use undead for guarding or building. If only they weren't so individually weak.
  • Illusionist Make people see things that aren't there. Make them more real than reality. A rather deceptive class
  • Brute The class for hitting things with a stick while angry. Slower, but very powerful, and with a deceptively far reach.
  • Channeller Channel the power of something far greater than yourself (Nature, divine), then grow to where you are the greater power others channel
  • Summoner Summon others to fight for you, give you rides and cheer you up. Also enhance them to be the best there ever was
  • Martial Artist Fight with your bare hands. Throw around waves of Ki. Design your own fighting style. Do impossible feats of agility and strength.
  • Contractual Make contracts with others and draw power from them, or empower them. Bind defeated foes to steal their abilities
  • Archer You shoot arrows really well. To the other side of the setting if necessary. and you never miss.
  • Shadow master a master of invisibility and stealth. Able to teleport through them, and use them to hide or find things. Or summon shadow monsters.
  • Weapon Bonded You have a single weapon you rely on above all others. Improve it through technology, or through magic. Never lose it again!
  • Wind Runner Teleport across the battle field. Teleport weapons to yourself. Teleport foes. Now you're thinking with portals!
  • Seer Know the future, alter the future. Plan the future. Subtle, but very useful in all situations
  • Shifter For when you want to shapeshift at will. Why have a weak human form when you can turn into a bear?


Sorcery
These concepts are about being connected with a piece of reality. It looks like magic, but its more calling and controlling a fundamental concept of the world.
  • Fire Burn things, unburn things. Teleport through fire. Heat control, cold control, and igniting passions in others
  • Water Control water. Create it, or destroy it. Make land fertile, or make it unable to sustain life. Heal by using the water in the body, or rip out someones blood from their body.
  • Earth Destroy objects, create objects. Make a thousand swords and hurl them at your foe. Yours is the domain of anything solid
  • Air Fly, open holes in reality to go elsewhere. Be invisible. Move fast. Steal the life from someones body or breath it back in.
  • Cut Cut anything. Cut metaphorical chains to free slaves and break mind control. Cut away at someones self worth. Or just make someones sword unable to cut at all.
  • Pierce Pierce defenses, pierce hiding locations, pierce deception. No one can hide, and no one can stop you. You can also make it so others can't pierce your defenses.
  • Crush Crush an opponent into the ground so they will never stand against you again. Destroy things completely no matter what they are. Crush rebellions. Crush Tyranny. Destroy it all!
  • Life Create new forms of life, keep things from dying, make life flourish. Or take life away.
  • End Allow things to keep existing, or end their existence. Anything ongoing will one day end, and that is your domain. To make the end come now, or delay it forever
  • Motion Make things move fast, make them never move again. Choose what direction they move in. Choose what direction society moves in.
  • Time Chance the past, stop the present, see the future. Change how time flows. Change what time effects.
  • The Weave Control magic itself. Alter spells to have different effect, alter what magics work in an area, and take the ability to do magic away from others, or grant it too them.
  • Light Control hope, light, and joy. From light springs peace, harmony, and order. Those are now yours to give, or take away.
  • Dark Control Pain, Hate, and Despair. From the dark springs destruction, deceit, and chaos. These are now yours to give or take away.
  • Bonds Bind people or things together, or sunder them for eternity. End friendships, and consecrate love that will never end.
  • Boundaries Manipulate the boundaries between concepts. Shift light to dark, or death to life. Reshape the boundaries of what a person or nation considers their own.


Attributes
These are for playing up a specific aspect of your character. A way to have a strong character, or a wealthy one. I know there are only 10, but I'm up for ideas if you think something should be dropped or switched out.
  • Strength Be strong enough to go anywhere, lift anything! Use weapons way to big for you!
  • Dexterity Dodge attacks and move fast. Dance on a cloud and hide like a ghost
  • Constitution Survive anything and keep going when all others would fall. Never be wounded again!
  • Intelligence Know everything (Even? Yes, even that!).
  • Wisdom Be aware of whats around you. Have a will like iron that will never break. Know the best course of action to take to achieve you goal.
  • Charisma Be loved by all. Excel in social situations and have the force of personality to bend others to your will. Step on people and have them thank you for it
  • Luck You're lucky. Play with the dice. Stop getting bad rolls. Make sure you succeed on tasks you are attempting. Have things work out for you without actually doing anything yourself
  • Mana Have vast amounts of magical energy to play with. Choose a few spells and just keep amping them up over time with your overwhelming power.
  • Ki You have mastered the life force running through you. Withstand blows, use it as a weapon, and fly insanely fast. Supercharge your attacks so they reach further, and hit harder, and devastate more things. Also heal people!
  • Wealth Have all the money. Buy all the things. Bribe all the people.


Bloodlines
These have to do with how you were born and what legacies you carry from an earlier life, or your ancestors. Again only 5. This is honestly just for completeness's sake. These 5 are locked in because they are important to the setting.
  • Born of light You have the bloodline of the divine flowing through you. You have angelic abilities.
  • Carrier of Shadow You are tainted by the shadow. You bring destruction where ever you go, but you have learned to harness that to your ends, instead of the Shadows.
  • Ancient Soul You have been reincarnated many times. You have faint memories of your past lives to help you on your way.
  • Peak human You're a pinnacle of humanity. You are well rounded and shine in all areas, though are a master of none in particular. you are also great at organizing others.
  • Half Alive Your life force is only partially there and you straddle the line between life and unlife. As you grow your powers of unlife grow making you seem more and more like the tales of undead of old. You are also almost impossible to kill.
  • Eternal You come from a race that lives nearly forever, and you know things humanity has forgotten. You have ancient rituals and knowledge that you can call on to aid you, and as you grow, so do your abilities to harness your peoples powers.
 

John Out West

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Validated User
Its hard to say without being able to read the full 2-pages. A link would be appreciated, as 2 sentences isn't much to go off of. I'm also curious to what those 2 pages of some of these concepts would be; if you filled them with mechanical abilities or just fluffy lore.

When you said Anime i was expecting to see more "Pulls weapons out of hammer-space" or "Can finish off an enemy by punching them so hard they fly into the sky and become a star." So i'm a little disappointed, but to each their own.

That being said, a lot of these look like they can be combined together and not lose much. Life and Light, dark and end, cut/crush/pierce, Martial Artist/Brute/Sword Master, all seem like they could be combined without missing anything.

Hope this helps.
 

jakinbandw

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Validated User
Its hard to say without being able to read the full 2-pages. A link would be appreciated, as 2 sentences isn't much to go off of. I'm also curious to what those 2 pages of some of these concepts would be; if you filled them with mechanical abilities or just fluffy lore.

When you said Anime i was expecting to see more "Pulls weapons out of hammer-space" or "Can finish off an enemy by punching them so hard they fly into the sky and become a star." So i'm a little disappointed, but to each their own.

That being said, a lot of these look like they can be combined together and not lose much. Life and Light, dark and end, cut/crush/pierce, Martial Artist/Brute/Sword Master, all seem like they could be combined without missing anything.

Hope this helps.
To be fair I only have one and a half concepts complete, but I want to cut down on my work load a bit. To be clear, it's nearly 2 full pages of mechanics with only a little bit of fluff at the start.

For now though here is the Soldier which is completed, and half the Blade Master:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1l_ULP_hbxuXi6tJy3YRVWlJdZyja3TL3IDQOq8fS_EQ/edit?usp=sharing
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1tCm1RIiZaTiT2fvxr5675oEaJmgz25MeGAYAfMnzDb0/edit?usp=sharing

I'm looking to finish up the Blade Master tonight. Hopefully the blade master will give a better idea of why I use the term 'Anime'

Here is a Reddit post on the Soldier concept where I clarify some things: Link

[Edit] The Blade Master Concept is now complete!
 
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jakinbandw

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The concept of Blade Sorcery is done. Fear those that can cut concepts as well as flesh and steel!
 

Octopus Prime

Retired User
My three cents for creating more anime-style combat:
-Have some kind of system for "building up attacks," ideally in the core mechanic. Anima Prime does this really well with it's Maneuver/Strike system, or Exalted with it's Initiative system.
-Don't do D&D style time and space simulation. Adding book-keeping for how far away people and whether they're in or out of range of any given attack slows down the pace of fights. I highly recommend either having abstract distance (ie, targets are either Close or Far away, and that's it), or none at all.
-Use a Tenra Bansho Zero style reverse death spiral (I posted another thread on this subject a while back). As characters get injured, they should be getting bonuses to their attack/maneuvers/whathaveyou. This does a ton to simulate the shounen anime fight rhythm, where the hero unleashing his final super-move right when he's on his last legs. This can play really well with cent no. 01 above.

Right now it looks like you're focusing on your classes and splats a lot; I would first look at a core combat mechanic that can simulate the type of action you want, and build off of it.
Good luck!
 

jakinbandw

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Validated User
My three cents for creating more anime-style combat:
-Have some kind of system for "building up attacks," ideally in the core mechanic. Anima Prime does this really well with it's Maneuver/Strike system, or Exalted with it's Initiative system.
-Don't do D&D style time and space simulation. Adding book-keeping for how far away people and whether they're in or out of range of any given attack slows down the pace of fights. I highly recommend either having abstract distance (ie, targets are either Close or Far away, and that's it), or none at all.
-Use a Tenra Bansho Zero style reverse death spiral (I posted another thread on this subject a while back). As characters get injured, they should be getting bonuses to their attack/maneuvers/whathaveyou. This does a ton to simulate the shounen anime fight rhythm, where the hero unleashing his final super-move right when he's on his last legs. This can play really well with cent no. 01 above.

Right now it looks like you're focusing on your classes and splats a lot; I would first look at a core combat mechanic that can simulate the type of action you want, and build off of it.
Good luck!
First of all. Thank you for the feedback. I've only got really 2 other people willing to look over my stuff and suggest things so I appreciate you taking time out of you day to look this over.

Let's take these in order:
1: I'll see what I can do. So far the two more animeish classes each have options to do things like this. Strength can spend a round powering up if they have no stress boxes free and become incredibly deadly, and sword has the option to build meter with each attack they make and then use it all in a devastating strike. Other options that cover less flashy or more weird thins probably won't get those however. I'll keep in in mind as something that the flashier concepts should have access to.
2: This is advice I'm ignoring. I do enjoy FATE and similar types of games, but I'm looking to build something more tactical. As a taste of what I'm talking about, characters in my system do not fall until the start of their turn, and when they are hit and fail their save they get pushed back directly away from where they were hit. The result of this are some interesting decisions for the player. If you jump above an opponent and attack them to knock them into the ground you'll still be there till the start of your next turn, and the guy you made a crater of can punch you further into the sky so an ally can get line of sight on you. I want motion and movement to be an important part of combat, and for that to happen movement speeds and such need to be a thing.
If you watch most anime fights they are very dynamic, with lots of moving around and maneuvering through environments. I don't see a lot of systems that encourage those styles of fights, so I'm willing to sacrifice speed of combat to try to capture that feel of motion.
3: I wouldn't say this is always the case, but like #1 I'm willing to see what I can do about slipping it into the flashier concepts. For example a lot of fights in one piece don't rely on super moves at all, and instead on creativity and ingenuity.
4: I have a very basic combat system. Roll attack to hit a targets defense, Then the target chooses an applicable save to make. If they make their save nothing happens. If they fail their save then they take a point of stress (possibly an additional point for every increment of 10 they failed their save by). Players start the game with 1 stress box. Minor NPCs and Foes have no stress boxes, and major ones have maybe 2-3 depending on play testing. Other than that I'm working in reverse. Finding what I need as I make the spats and seeing what I need to fix with my system to get things to feel the way they should.
 
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Alban

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There should definitely be a rule about shouting special attacks names (even if it's just a bonus chance for casting it).
-Rocket Punch !
-Rozan shô ryû ha !
-Ka... me... ha...me... HA !!!!
-(...) Hirake, Jigoku no mon ! Hallo-Een !
 

jakinbandw

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Validated User
There should definitely be a rule about shouting special attacks names (even if it's just a bonus chance for casting it).
-Rocket Punch !
-Rozan shô ryû ha !
-Ka... me... ha...me... HA !!!!
-(...) Hirake, Jigoku no mon ! Hallo-Een !
Heh. Maybe. That said I don't think you need to cast Kamehamehas. It sounds like it's just a cool special move that a martial artist has designed. Take a look at blade master for example. They have really cool special moves that they can design and use fairly freely. That said, I did rewrite their intro to suggest that they make custom names for their attacks and call them out in battle.

Oh, and the next two concepts are done now!

Strength lets you punch with the power of Saitama(ish), and throw anything you can lift. And you can lift anything!

Peak Human is for those that really want to build a well rounded character... That can punch hard, move fast, and be charming. And max out every single attribute!
 

jakinbandw

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Validated User
I figure I should update this. I've been quiet, but that's mostly from a seeming lack of interest. I've been working my butt off to get more concepts done. In this package we have 6 new concepts all sorta focused around magic: The Ritualist, The Mage, Fire Sorcery, Water Sorcery, The Attribute of Mana, and Those Touched by Shadow. Enjoy!

Remember that I'm going to do one more set before I do a balance pass and release rules for play testing, this is just those that want a peak at where the game is heading.






 
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