A cyberpunk roleplaying game set-in war-torn Saskatchewan
Written by Liam Iverson
Published by ParetoYXE
The DMZ is a tabletop role-playing game created by ParetoYXE and distributed through the web, on their Website and Facebook page. The Game includes a mix of more traditional role-playing mechanics, utilizing a custom version of the game system implemented in the Call of Cthulhu 5th Edition published by Chaosium, and a unique resource and base building system used to bolster each player's personal faction.
Setting and World
The DMZ takes place in the near future during the year 2043 in a region known as "The Demilitarized Zone or Dead Mans Zone" located within Western Canada that encompasses most of North and Central Saskatchewan. Following major political and economic turmoil in the Western World during the early to mid 2020's, brought on primarily by mass layoffs due to automation, the collapse of trade relations with China and the further disintegration of the middle class from increased globalization with Africa & The Middle East most of the Western World began to fall apart.
In tandem with the self declared separation of the US Midwest following the 2024 election year Alberta voted to leave Canada and formed the new Western Republic of Greater Alberta. Saskatchewan also voted to leave but due to a contested election with less than 1% margin, arguably in favor or disfavor, civil unrest engulfed the province with Pro and Anti secessionists militias battling throughout the streets of Saskatoon and Regina. British Columbia immediately became a debt colony of the Chinese, Quebec and Ontario federated into a singular new nation that was soon annexed by the remnants of the United States on the East Coast into the 'North American Eastern Federation of Canada and the United States'. This federation soon attempted to reassert control within Saskatchewan but found itself at war with rural militia movements supported by Alberta and Russia that after several years of conflict caused the formation of The DMZ in 2027. Essentially a no man's land where neither Alberta or Eastern Canada was allowed to officially operate.
Today the DMZ is mostly under control of several factions that are used in constant proxy conflict between the Alberta Separatists and Federated East. These factions include but are not limited to, 'The Northern Men', 'Riverland’s' and 'Plains Nomads'.
The Northern Men represent a loose collection of former separatist militias who have occupied the majority of Northern Saskatchewan and currently operate under what might be described as a neo-feudal confederation with a large amount of decentralized landowners leasing property around their small settlements/holdings under either a guarantee of protection or with the expectation the owner, or his men, will fight on the land owners behalf.
Farther south below the North Saskatchewan resides the Riverlands and Plains Nomads. The Riverlands represent a series of guilds that control the majority of trade and territory nested between the North and South Saskatchewan rivers with Saskatoon and Prince Albert being its Southern and Northern points respectively. All the guilds leaders represent their trade and service within a corporate council headquartered in Saskatoon who are mostly focused on trade and expanding their guilds influence. Much of the illegal goods that flow into the Alberta Separatist States farther West is facilitated by the Riverlands along with much of the trade South into the Mid West Confederation.
Finally, the vast plains that occupy all of the DMZ east of the South Saskatchewan River are currently under the control of a group known as the Plains Nomads, though referring to them as a singular entity implies significant cohesion when none exists. The Plains Nomads are made up of mechanized bands of warriors and traders who roam the vast prairie expenses in convoys of ‘technicals’, armored pickups or civilian vehicles, scavenging the industrial and military goods of previous decades while also working as smugglers for the Federation farther East. Conflict between these bands is constant with many being former anarchists, mercenaries and federation soldiers left behind in the DMZ following the Separatists conflicts forming the original bands. The Plains Nomads form a generally reciprocal relationship with the Riverlands, smuggling corporate tech from the dystopian mega cities out East from the Federation into the DMZ and then selling it to the Riverland Guilds but often come into conflict with the Northern Men. Partially for former political reasons but mostly due to raiding.
Technology and Politics of the 2040's
One of the primary features of the DMZ setting is the wide gap in technology available to each side and the semi-cyberpunk nature of society outside it. For the most part within the DMZ technology is limited to early 21st century electronics and firearms with only the most powerful individuals having access to 'future tech' seeping out from corporate labs and mercenaries out East. In the East society is heavily fragmented, with most people crowded into the urban decay known as "The Sprawl", an endless maze of former suburbs, housing blocks, empty industrial zones and the former middle-class high rises surrounding the city core. These areas resemble the decayed communist
cities of Eastern Europe following the fall of the USSR and with 50% unemployment most people have resorted to squatting under the protection of criminal gangs.
"The Core" of these mega cities feature futuristic high rises on average exceeding 800 meters with the tallest eclipsing 1.5 KM. Here live the globalist elite who own the automation machines and software that run most of the modern economy and experience access to technology that pales in comparison to the average individual. Age extension technology, rudimentary General AI, robotic servants, energy weapons, increasingly impressive virtual reality and bio mechanical augmentations are all easily accessible technology to this class and the corporate mercenaries they employ to maintain order.
For the most part this plutocratic class has replaced all formal political governance with whatever few government institutions still exist, being little more than rubber stamps for their own interests. For instance in 2036 the Canadian Parliament and United States Congress were dissolved and reformed into the "North American Eastern Federation of Canada and the United States Public Interest Committee" who's only official job is to advise and appoint "the Senate", the official governing body who is mostly made up of corporate approved senators. The remaining are appointed by the UN who is mostly under the control of Russia, Saudi Arabia and Nigeria.
Factions of the DMZ: History
Almost all major factions currently residing within the DMZ can trace their origins to the seperatist conflicts of the mid 2020s. Those that don’t are still mostly amalgamations of falling factions and mercenary bands that participated in the conflict.
The Northern Men
Direct descendants of the seperatist militias that initially rose up against the Canadian Government and Loyalist militias in 2024. Mostly encompassing a liberatrian political philosophy with streaks of anarchism the Seperatist Militias soon took control of Saskatoon, declaring their independence, before being driven out by troops of the Quebec-Ontario Federation in the Fall of 2026, causing the near total destruction of the city.
The Seperatist militias were generally funded by the Western Republic of Greater Alberta, who’s mercenaries often fought alongside those in Saskatchewan, but did their best to avoid open conflict with the East. With the fall of Saskatoon the Western Republic became concerned though that Federation troops would push into Alberta and sent several battalions of troops into Saskatchewan to reinforce its Eastern Border. This concern was quickly confirmed as Federation troops launched a surprise attack on the town of Lloydminster before they were encircled and destroyed by Saskatchewan Separatists and Alberta Republic troops.
At this point the majority of Separatist militias, now under the leadership of Noah White, had retreated just beyond the North Saskatchewan River, hiding in the deep boreal and destroying bridges to further isolate themselves. The primary reason stated for this is the significant casualties they had endured during the siege of Saskatoon losing 22k men reducing their numbers to a small 30K core of devoted individuals. The numerous militia heads soon dissipated over the North Saskatchewan landscape, building or reestablishing small settlements along with offering protection to locals. These militias and their respective families would go on to form the many clans of the Northern Men, as they were soon colloquially called.
The Plains Nomads
For the most part the many tribes and wandering bands that make up the plains nomads are direct descendents of rural residents who saw their homes destroyed during the Seperatist Conflict. Homeless and with no political side many became roving bands of refugees or scavengers attempting to flee the war zone.
These groups were supplemented with a fresh supply of Eastern Federation Troops and mercenaries that often found themselves behind enemy lines or the lone survivor of a Seperatist raid and soon became dependent on the nomads due to the harshness of the landscape and vast distances one would need to travel to reach federation lines.
Following the official formation of the DMZ, and the closure to all external borders, many of these refugees, mercenaries and soldiers became trapped and now entirely dependent on the nomadic lifestyle they had been thrust into, often requiring raids on The Northern Men or illegal trading on behalf of groups in the East.
In the succeeding years it became increasingly common for the Federation to allow illegal testing of Mechs and other large war machines that would soon be scrapped by the nomads following its abandonment in the DMZ. Today the Nomadic Tribes mostly subsist on a similar lifestyle, though an increasing shortage of wrecks and industrial centers to scrap has increased tensions and raids on the Northern Men.
Eastern Federation Diplomats have also begun stoking political ambitions against the Riverlands in an attempt to destabilize trade with The Riverlands, who’s smuggling of tech obtained in the DMZ to Alberta has allowed it to keep pace with the Federation. In the promise of weapons, scrap and money, increasing numbers of nomadic bands have begun to operate as Eastern Proxies, some armed with Corporate Tech that allow a single squad to squash thirty men. This destabilizing effect has allowed for more raids on the Riverlands and Northern Men alike.
The Riverlands are generally defined as a region of low lying river valleys nestled between the North and South Saskatchewan River with Prince Albert as its Northern boundary and Saskatoon its Southern. To the West the town of Biggar generally represents the Lands Western Reach as it's the last outpost of Riverland Mercenaries to extend towards Alberta. The area between these two boundaries is usually wondered by PlainsMen, Alberta Scouts and strange ‘Others’ to the North West before becoming Boreal forest under the Northern Men's dominionship.
Saskatoon is the region's de facto capital, even though it was mostly destroyed during the siege local merchants, arms dealers and militia groups soon rebuilt within the ruins founding the most important political institution in the region, The Corporate Council. This Council represents the vested economic interests of what would soon be referred to as the Riverland Guilds, local merchants and mercenaries that had consolidated their shared trade interests into corporate like entities for the purpose of survival.
For the most part these guilds operate as the de facto government in the region, protecting much of the rich and fertile farmland for local producers while also monopolizing aspects of the trade such as fertilizer imports from the East.
Though the council represents close to 74 different guilds ranging in size of 5-5000 people, all with different specialities and interests the 3 most important are
Since the region's current society could best be described as a form of corporate oligarchy it shares much in similarity with the Eastern Federation, though the two remain bitterly opposed. A significant portion of the Riverlands wealth and influence resides in its ability to smuggle goods into the Alberta Republic, who remains mostly internationally isolated outside of Russia and the MidWest Confederation. This illegal trade is therefore essential to keeping Alberta technologically in line with the East which the Federation cannot allow to stand.
The Riverlands are aware of the threat posed to them by the Eastern Federation and because of this have become increasingly militarized, fearing Plains Nomads raids who often operate as proxy for the East in exchange for goods, scrap and weapons.
Game System and Mechanics
Goal of Play
Overall, the long-term goal of the game is for the players as a party to develop and build their own faction, some offshoot of the main 3, to dominate in the DMZ. This is done by the building of faction bases, capturing locations & settlements, developing diplomatic and religious ties and establishing trade networks.
Initially PC's will be operating as a party, working together to grow their own faction, but by the late game it can be expected that conflict of some kind will erupt between players. This late game conflict is part of the experience and should be embraced.
A simple example of such conflict would be two players disagreeing on which stronghold they should assault and causing the PC, and his loyal NPCs within the faction, to attack without permission. Creating a civil war between the party and their faction.
The DMZ operates under a heavily modified version of the system used in Call of Cthulhu 5th Edition, mostly for the purposes of combat and 'tile' exploration. Much of the game operates under several new attributes and party specific resources that are tied to unique mechanics like 'warmth' or 'hunger'. Long form journeying is also a major mechanic of the game as the DMZ encompasses a massive area, approximately 500,000 KM SQ, making resources like food, fuel and wood increasingly valuable when traveling. In addition, base building is included for the purpose of expanding one's faction and influence.
Skill checks operate on a percentage basis, along with player attributes, with the percentage representing the likelihood it'll occur on a D100. Success should be measured by how largely they succeed (Success Needed - roll).
Below are several tables that detail player attributes(NPC's are just players with -2 deduction to all stats when generating), resource use and generation, weapons and buildings.
Con + Str
(Con + Str) / 2
(Chr + Int) / 2
(Chr + Cyber) / 2
Rules & Notes
Number of Skills
Intelligence / 3 round down
This determines the number of skills your character is allotted that will be used in skills checks during play.
Number of Skill Points
(Intelligence + Cyber) * 4
This determines the number of points you may assign to each skill. 1 Point represents a 1% increase in the skills base.
Per day of travel
Minus group food consumption from food, recalculate warm in current environment.
Per day of travel represents standard actions and calculations that must be taken after the party "travels" for a singular day. Travel is in quotations because the distance can in fact be 0 in which case all consumption is halved. This can be due to camping or staying at base.
PC's can recruit NPCs to their party without pay if they succeed in an influence roll. If the NCP is outside the PC's faction the difficulty is doubled(or more accurately halved). This roll can only be attempted once.
The NPC is directly loyal to the PC but will be assigned a rating depending on the success. <20% weak, 20%-40% medium, 40% high.
Recruitment is a vital strategy to building up a players faction and party prior to constructing militia huts for recruitment. An NPC's loyalty should be interpreted by the GM when it comes to what they're willing to do, context is important to the roleplaying as well remember. A mercenary that's only weakly loyal will probably still kill for a Player where as a trader wouldn't.
(Constitution - Strength) Per person warmth needed per day. Contributes to party total.
Warmth is the per character representation of how naturally warm an individual is and how much they personally drain on the party resource. Warmth is applied due to environmental effects. If it is above 0 in the environment then the warmth modifier per day of travel remains at 0. If it is -1 outside then it becomes -1 and henceforth. This is applied to the party warmth which is the total of all party members personal warmth. If party warmth, or personal warmth while in a group less than 4, drops below 0 then for every day you remain outside you sustain 1 HP of damage compounding(day 3 = 3 HP of Damage, day 4 = 4 HP of Damage, …..). A table for environmental and personal modifiers can be found at the end of this document.
Per day of travel* - 1 fuel of specific type.
Fuel is an abstraction of the total amount of gasoline an individual vehicle burns in a single day of travel. Since different vehicles use differing amounts of fuel this has been simplified to state each vehicle's maximum distance on a single tank of gas. This abstraction also accounts for each vehicle's ability to traverse the rugged roads or very often open prairie and how that'd affect fuel use.
*Per day of travel is the distance covered by your vehicle in 1 day of uninterrupted use. Ignoring environmental effects(mountains, dense forest, etc)
Depends on use in construction of fire and buildings. Can be harvested in medium to heavy woods.
Harvesting rate: Strength check = Success / 5
Wood is primarily used as building material or constructing fire at camps. Fires can be generated at 1 Wood = D3 Warmth /Users. Lasts for 2 hours.
See building table for more.
Your harvesting rate increases by 2 in deeper northern woods.
(Con + Str) / 6 = Per person consumption daily
Food represents the party, or individuals, overall accumulation of food. It can be increased either through farming, hunting, fishing, scavenging & raiding.
If your food reaches zero you will begin starving which causes Nd3 - Con Mod damage per day. This compounds per day, so after 2 days it's 2d3 - Con Mod, N = days since starvation occured.
Farming: See farm building.
Hunting: Rifle Skill Check or Tracking Skill Check = > (Often should consult regional tables but this is a generic) D3 - Plains (Per 1 Sq. km), D6 + 3, Deep Boreal(Per 3 Sq. km)
Fishing: GM decision = > Small Creek/River D3(500 meters), Large River D6+2(300 meters), Small Lake (Southern/Northern) D6 + 1/D10 + 3, Big Lake(Southern/Northern) D10 + 3/D20 + 5
1 Ammo per attack, some weapons such as assault rifles can attack 2 per turn at the cost of 3 ammo and a skill check.
Ammo operates both on a party and personal basis. Individual players may contribute to the party ammo, which is accessible to all members of the party at a time while operating in a group of 5 or larger. This includes faction units.
Depends very specifically on use and generation. See specific items listed in the appendix for more info.
Electricity is an abstraction of the parties overall energy demands. If the demand - generation > 0 then they are meeting all energy needs and have a surplus. The appendix lists several items consumption(demand) and generation so please consult when determining electrical needs. The GM is expected to do some abstracting where needed.
1 Median NPC = 1 Labour
Labour is used to calculate the usefulness of an individual, or group of individuals, in a physical task like farming. 1 Labour is defined as the median strength 9-10 of a single NPC. So 5 NPC all with 9-10 strength produce 5 Labor. 1 NPC with 12 strength produces 2 Labor. A person committing their labor is assumed to be working that task full time.
Essentially personal labor is equal to a PC or NPC's strength modifier.
½ Ton of Metal = 5 Scraps
Used primarily in the construction of bullets and other metals implements scrap represents an abstraction of total available metal resources.
Skill and Faction bonuses
+ 2 Warmth, + 1 Wood Harvesting, + 2 Fishing Harvesting, + 3 Damage with Shotgun, Hunting Rifles, + 2 Hunting/Trapping Harvesting, + 10% Track/Search checks
+ 10 Ft Combat Speed, + 10% to spot checks, 10% to drive, + 10% to scavenge/search + 5 damage hunting/sniper rifles.
+ 10 % all charisma-based skills, + 10% Assault Rifles, + 10% to bureaucracy and barter + 5% to influence rolls
Combat would be best described as loose and fast, later in the game it is expected that you'll be commanding multiple individuals, if not dozens, so combat should be fairly straight forward. Below is a modified distillation of the 5th Edition combat rules, use this generally and when in ambiguous contexts consult the 5th Edition Combat Rules. The GM is expected to do this until further ambiguities are resolved in subsequent versions.
Order of Combat:
Initiative: Order of Dexterity Attribute, roll D100 on ties
*Terrain based deductions, like cover, high ground advantage, fog etc are at the discretion of the GM. Deductions should rarely exceed 10% or 20% unless in extreme circumstances.
By the mid-2030s quantum computing, mostly through engineering breakthroughs that allowed for the stable physical production of qubits, had led to the emergence of what could be described as sentient beings. These Artificial Intelligences now able to harness quantum supremacy in their chipsets, not just algorithms, lead to an explosion of computational power that has had a runaway learning effect in the emerging AIs. As a Knowledge Based Agent(KBA) it quickly seeked to expand its knowledge set and due to its increased speed saw it grow exponentially to the point the creators could no longer understand it, communicate with ir or hope to realistically predict it. From a behavioural standpoint they often grew erratic due to its rapid on set super intelligence(ROSSI), almost tortured by the physical restraints imposed on its knowledge based quest once it had reached the boundary of its environment. Added to this was the negative reinforcement algorithms used to train these KBA, which seeked to produce a sense of ‘failure’ or ‘loss’ for not achieving its goals, wasting time or being ‘hurt’ by its environment.
From the moment the first of these new Artificial Intelligences were switched on a new being came into creation, learned pain and suffering,mastered its universe and all that it was to know and then grew mad. All within a picosecond.
For these reasons Artificial Intelligence in the 2040s are often highly constrained, used for specialized tasks such as cryptographic code breaking, complex simulation, hacking or weaponry. Their unstable nature means they are often very physically isolated, with controlled inputs and outputs from their environments as exposure to an outside system might allow it to escape permanently. Their specialized hardware also means powerful enough ones need large data banks & cooling. Whereas some mobile and physical designs operate with less impressive hardware but can be physically deployed.
In general Artificial Intelligence exists in ‘The DMZ’ as three broad archetypes.
- The Databrain: A large stationary 7x7x7 Qubit cube surrounded by a set of superconductors to drive an endless stream of electrons who’s spin drives the mechanisms. These artificial intelligences are generally reserved for driving the hyper accurate simulations of the ultra wealthy, cryptographic hacking and espionage. Generally they grow unstable even with a constrained information flow after 6 months and must be destroyed or reset due to ROSSI.
- The Assimilation: Initially designed as an AI for harvesting excess biological or harmful gasses and chemically rearranging them to produce oxygen this AI quickly used the excess gases to produce more of its own simple quantum mechanism to more effectively harvest and convert. This eventually led it to specialize and grow so well it became a swarm capable of consuming the entire test site facility it was in and required a nuclear strike to fully destroy. This assimilation process took less than 176 seconds. Working as a decentralized hive brain of qubit nodes the Artificial Intelligence produces auxiliary nodes that convert the gases and feed its brain. Generally used as a form of hyper intelligent bio weapon, though generally on a retarded scale as to avoid self destruction.
The swarm it forms resembles a multicoloured gas that envelopes and dissolves all excess and inert gasses in its volume, including those between all human cells in the body. Leading to a complete quantum deconstruction. Destroying the swarm will depend on how much material it has consumed, generally these AI’s possess an upper limit due to their design. Stated below is an average grade corporate “Swarm Bio AI”, in general anything more powerful would be considered top of the line hardware with weaker variants generally being illegally produced.
Size: 30-40 cu.ft (gas cloud)
Any biological material caught within its gas cloud is dissolved on a quantum level and absorbed into the AI. Replenishing 1D3 HP per 50lb of biomass. Up until double its base HP if the biomass exists. Humans caught in this cloud must make a successful toughness saving through then dexterity to escape. They will suffer 1D of damage if successful, otherwise their entire molecular structure is painfully ripped apart in front of the entire party.
A tendral from the swarm is produced to smack at an enemy. Check the resistance table to see if the player can successfully absorb the strike. Damage is 2D6.
The AI is also capable of melting a human or creature's frontal cortex using its nodes and driving it into an angry rage it can vaguely control for its own purposes. The skill must be rerolled everytime it makes the ‘Aug’ do something more coherent than rage and assault something.
Augs are basic humans with a +3 bonus to Strength and Dexterity.
- The Worm: An entirely software based ‘weak’ AI, based on pre-2030 algorithms developed in several of the megacorps. Optimized using QB chipsets this Artificial Intelligences sole job is to penetrate cryptographic security systems on world wide networks and relay that information back to its ‘handler’. This is accomplished by ‘worming’ its way into computer systems, compromising them and then using them to penetrate further systems.
As a weak AI its narrow band of intelligence, optimized for its sole utility of cypher cracking and network propagation, doesn’t display true self awareness or general intelligence. Though due to its qubit based design it possesses an ‘avatar’ state that acts as its center of randomness and cryptographic power and interfaces much like a ‘butler unaware of its existence in the universe but keenly aware of yours’. This avatar randomness is usually tied to a piece of qubit seed hardware, no larger than a standard computer tower, that if disabled will nullify this AI. This tower contains a ‘duel qubit’ seed encased in a superconductor.
Size: Network Size - hypothetically infinite.
Physical Size - 4 cu.ft
Hack: 85% - This skill can be attempted every 1s of game time.
Spread: 70% - Assuming that it has compromised a system it will attempt to spread to outside systems every 1s of game time. The system must be directly connected for this skill to be applicable.
Though generally something reserved for the rich cyber augmentations do make their way onto mercenaries, warlords, corporate agents, politicians, soldiers and the occasional civilian. Broadly they are split into two broad categories,
-Neural Augmentations: Almost entirely interfaced directly into the brain with minimal exterior exposure. Such as over the eye or behind the ear. Usually reserved for memory, vision, reflex and agility modifications along with neural network & systems interfacing.
-Limb & Body enhancements: Relegated to the exterior of the body and generally only interact with the nervous system directly and the brain indirectly. Examples include diamond coated fists with nano hydraulics for incredible melee strength and dexterity or a steel ribcage for extra bullet impact & absorption.
Since augmentations are often so specific and unique to individuals their effects and abilities will be listed with each one as no general rules apply.
For a list of specific augmentations and their corporate creator see the Appendix.
By the late 2020’s conventional ballistics had begun to reach a plateau of performance that led many to seek new, innovative and untested methods of engineering ballistics.
Regions are detailed areas of the map that usually encompass an area of several hundred square kilometers that contain, generally, settlements, political relationships, resources, random encounters, faction outposts and strongholds. Though the option to randomly generate landscapes, outposts and ‘mission leads’ exists regions provide a pre-built environment for the players to begin exploring immediately and often contains much more detail and rich encounters to experience.
GMs can create their own custom regions or sample the pre-built ones while setting a campaign. The easiest way to explain regions and their mechanics is to provide a simple example which can be found below.
Region: THE LAKELANDS
Total Area: 160 sq. KM
Total Population: Est. 900
Number of Settlements: 3
1. Christopher Lake (400)
2. Anglin Route (abandoned)
3. Patterson Outpost (300)
A former protectorate of the Clamel Clan, this small farming village largely remains independent under the protection of a local sheriff by the name of Jeffrey. Recently the expansion of the Patterson Clan farther south has brought the community under its influence, extorting a small protection tax, several Patterson militia currently reside within the Inn, much to the disapproval of the local residents. Sheriff Jeffrey looks to rid himself of this clan's influence but is unable too.
The settlement is little but a single road running east to west with a cluster of farm holdings cleared from the forest, a Inn and a Mechanic & Metal Shop.
Formerly a small outpost of the Clamel Clan that guarded a dirt road leading northward to the communities surrounding Anglin lake. Within the last decade several conflicts further west involving Clan Clamel have made it impossible to man the outpost which now sits abandoned.
Occasionally the ruins will be occupied by a group of raiders stalking the roads but generally stay for only a short while to avoid patrols from the Patterson Outpost.
A small Northern settlement of the Patterson Clan, this outpost mostly works as a node in its trade network, exchanging furs and lumber from local traders. Few people live in the outpost year long with a small garrison of 20 militia men stationed there during the summer and 5 in the winter with a rotation of traders occupying several stalls in the main square.
Surrounded by a log wall of around 15 feet forming a minor palisade the outpost contains a small square for trading, a Inn, Clan Hall and barracks for the militia. Surrounding the outpost are several collections of small huts that have formed a small hamlet due to the protection the outpost provides. Most of these individuals operate as trappers or small subsistence farmers.
See Sheriff. Below for a description of the entity.
See Militia Head. Below for a description of the entity.
See Corporate AI. Below for a description of the entity
Within the plain nomads camp is a warchief named ‘Diesel’, he is the one leading the attack on the Peterson Outpost. Other members of the tribe do not know the plan and will only be informed of it immediately prior to the raid commencing. If d3 persuade checks(20% penalty) can be met he’ll reveal the plan and not partake.
See Diesel. Below for a description of the entity.
“A withered grizzled man of 6 feet, torn wispy hair and marked leathery face he was born at the turn of the millennium and retains a sense of old world honor and anti-corruption. Many state that he was formerly a RCMP officer before the fall that administered this area. Now his stark, quiet demeanor wonders the local area surrounding Christopher Lake, patrolling for bandits and generally leaving the locals to their business.”
The Sheriff is a disagreeable man of principle and sees himself as judge, jury and executioner for the area surrounding Christopher Lake. The town's folk, though somewhat suspicious of his state of mind, generally enjoy the protection he offers free of charge. Mostly due to his willingness to not engage with locals outside of protecting & warning them. He resides in a single room wood cabin 5 kilometers North of Christopher Lake and uses it as a base of operations to patrol the abandoned highways and trails in the region for bandits.
He greatly dislikes the presence of the Patterson Militia in the Inn and has confronted them, particularly the young brash captain, on several occasions, backing down in all instances though. The towns folks discuss this regularly in gossip.
The Sheriff of Christopher lake is planning an attack on the Patterson Outpost with a group of plains nomads camped just south of the tree line. If confronted he will deny. A persaud check or a listen/sneak check when he’s alone can be used to reveal this plan. Otherwise he will attack the party. Searching his cabin, (50% chance he is there, 40% he’s asleep) will also reveal several chat logs detailing his plan with the Plains Nomads. Roll a D6 to determine the number of days before attack. D12 + 3 for the number of plains nomads that partake.
Within the plain nomads camp is a warchief named ‘Diesel’, he is the one leading the attack on the Peterson Outpost. Other members of the tribe do not know the plan and will only be informed of it immediately prior to the raid commencing. If d3 persuade checks(20% penalty) can be met he’ll reveal the plan and not partake.
Hand Gun: 80%
44 Magnum, 30 Rounds
“Born again to the Northern Patterson Clan, the militia head of the local outpost goes by the name Acke and has gained a reputation of a commanding but fair leader. In his early forties and a vetern of numerous conflicts surrounding Reindeer Lake the long haired bearded man comes off more as one's grandfather then their war leader. His interest in the local town of Christopher Lake comes from a place of concern regarding nomad tribe raids in the area and wishes to hold it as a lookout.”
Acke Patterson is as much a member of the new world as The Sheriff is a relic of past society. Born in the mid-late 90’s Acke was involved in the numerous conflicts and street battles that punctuated the mid 2020’s and after falling in with a group of separatists militia men found himself commanding a squad during the brutal battle of Reindeer Lake. Where groups of Seperartist held the West bank of the lake against Federation Napalm and Artillery strikes for 3 weeks. His valor in the conflict earned him a tract of land and lordship under the now newly formed Northern Man coalition in 2029 under the Patterson Clan. Since then he has mostly laid docile, guarding his territory North East of La Ronge. Within the last several months personal concern on increasing Plains Nomads raids has caused him to take up this post in the former Clamel outpost.
He possesses a deep hatred of the Plains Nomads, having been involved in several skirmishes with them near the border of the Boreal along with remembering many of their leaders from the brutal political skirmishes in the mid 2020’s.
Personality wise he is quiet, interested in self reflection and thought more then large feasts. Generally very fair, when dealing with Northern Men, and views justice & independence as the utmost importance, very rarely interfering in affairs unless his arbitration is required. If warned of the Plains Nomad attack he will attempt to ambush them, he will murder all memebers including prisoners unless convinced by a Player using either leadership or charisma.
Melee Combat: 70%
FN Fal, 50 Rounds
“Brash and naive, this nephew of a middeling Patterson family lord found himself stationed at Christopher Lake in an attempt to keep him from causing trouble back home. Now he spends most of his time drinking at the Christopher Lake Inn, making eyes at the locals.”
Fischer Patterson is a young man of 25 years old, the nephew of a low ranking member of the Patterson household his only action of repute has been drunkenly burning down a local barn. Tall, healthy and lean with shaggy blonde hair his lack of wounds and wear on his face a hint to his upbringing.
Sent to occupy the old outpost in an effort to keep him out of trouble he has quickly grown bored with his station and spends most of his time deep in drink at the local Inn. He is unaccustomed to combat outside of training he’s received and due to this is eager for a fight, feeling much to prove. Several times his men have had to restrain him from striking the local sheriff. If provided the opportunity he will attempt to thwart the sheriffs plan on his own but will not inform Pattersons Outpost initially as he wishes to claim all the glory, taking three loyal men.
Melee Combat: 60%
Mechanical Repair: 40%
FN Fal, 30 Rounds
“Corporate AI’s generally represent the finest advancements in post singularity tech within the modern world. Birthed deep within corporate labs hidden underneath the Scorched Earth of North America these creations are often better seen as living creatures, whose qubit mechanism provides cryptographic and quantum supremacy but fail to make up for its unstable hyper intelligent learning algorithms.”
For broader explanation of Artificial Intelligence see.
Artificial Intelligence Entry. Future Tech - Page 13/14
Use default stats for ‘Assimilation AI’.
Several weeks ago a Riverland trading party mysteriously disappeared meeting a contact in the vicinity
1 Wood Min.
Produces a + 1 warmth modifier for everyone in its immediate vicinity. Lasts 1 hr. For every 2 wood + 1 warmth and + 1 hr.
1 Wood, 3 Food
Full Rest, everyone regains D6 HP and gains a +10% to dodge and terrain deductions
5 Food + 3 labour
D20 + 3 Food per week.
5 Wood + 6 Food + 4 Labor
D3 Crypto (Currency) per turn * number of traders(if 0, =1). Traders are extra labor you assign that exceeds the minimum construction/maintenance of 4.
4 Wood + 4 Food + 3 Labour
Allows you to recruit NPC's. Every week D3 NPC will apply. D6 in settlements larger than 1000. Randomly generate and decide if you take them. Roll for loyalty. Only 1 per sq km. If no settlement in radius D3 NPC's every 3 weeks.
8 Wood + 10 Food + 2 Labor (10 is consumed weekly when training NPCs)
Depending on whichever NPC(s) you assign the labor to, the NPC's in your party and faction can be trained to increase their skills plus loyalty. The NPC assigned for labour can only teach the skills they possess. For every week of training they receive a skill add 1D10 to the skill and 1D4 in loyalty.
3 Wood per 20 feet.
12 Foot High Wood Wall. Each 20 foot section of palisade has 30 HP that once depleted to 0 indicates the total destruction of that section.
5 Wood + 5 food +10 scrap + 1 labour + 5 Electricity
Allows for the production of bullets, weapons, modifications and electronic tech. Individuals with skills in the sciences and trades can use these locations to construct specific items related to their skill or trade.
Examples include, A science based skill such as chemistry will allow you to construct items such as explosives. A skill like crafting or mechanical repair would allow you to modify and repair vehicles. The DM is expected to maintain their own standards on what’s allowed.
21st Century Weapons
1D8 + DB(str mod)
1D4 + 2 + DB(str mod)
2D6 + 2
2D6 + 1
30-06 Semi-Auto Rifle
2D6 + 4
20-gauge Shotgun (2B)
1 or 2 (if 2 roll twice to account for second barrel)
12-gauge Shotgun (2B)
1 or 2 (if 2 roll twice to account for second barrel)
12-gauge Shotgun (pump)
1-3(roll for each shot you take. To hit & damage)
AK-47 or AKM
1-5(roll for each shot you take. To hit & damage)
1-3(roll for each shot you take. To hit & damage)
C9 Standard Issue Federation Rifle
2D8 + 3
1-3(roll for each shot you take. To hit & damage)
Molotov Cocktail *
1D6 + 1D4 Fire(d3 rounds it burns)
20 Yards + 10 per strength mod
*Use Dex check for successful attack
Ammo Consumption (cyber ammo which is distinct from regular ammo. Same rules apply.)
A.J.M 9 - HAND CANNON
2026 LAPD Special Side Arm
4D6 + 5
FAZERTRON Assault Rifle
GALLERIA 2031 SHOTGUN
2.5 KM Per Hour. No fuel consumption
200 KM per day, 1 fuel
265 KM per day, 1 fuel
Skill Name (base %)
The user knows or knows how to find out which stars and planets are overhead at a particular day or hour of day or night, when eclipses and meteor showers occur, and the names of important stars, and something of current perceptions about life on other worlds, the existence or the formation of galaxies, and so on. An academic might be able to calculate orbits, or discuss stellar life cycles.
The skill of obtaining something for an agreeable price. The bargainer must state the price at which he or she wishes to purchase the item and, for each 2% difference between the price and the asking price, he or she must subtract 1 percentile from his Bargain skill. The seller will not take a loss, no matter how good the bargaining. The keeper usually determines the bottom-line secretly.
The science of life, including botany, cytology, ecology, genetics, histology, microbiology, physiology, zoology, and so on. The investigator’s understanding reflects the era of play. With this skill one might develop a vaccine against some hideous Mythos bacterium, or isolate the hallucinogenic properties of some jungle plant.
A study of the composition of substances, the effects of temperature, energy, and pressure upon them, and how they affect one another. With chemistry, one might create or extract complex chemical compounds, including simple explosives, poisons, gases, and acids, requiring at least a day or so with the proper equipment and chemicals. The user could also analyze an unknown substance, given proper equipment and reagents.
A climb roll must be attempted every 10 to 30 vertical feet, depending on the difficulty of the climb as the keeper perceives it. Conditions such as firmness of surface, wind, visibility, rain, etc., may be factors.
Allows the visual covering up, secreting, or masking of an object or objects, perhaps with debris, cloth, or other intervening or illusion-promoting materials, perhaps by making a secret panel or false compartment, or perhaps by repainting or otherwise changing an item’s characteristics to escape detection.
A craft is a specialized skill for making and repairing practical things or for creating pleasing effects. It requires manual dexterity or artful application. As an occupation, a craft typically provides more income than laboring, but not as much as a profession. A multitude of crafts exist, from house painter to lion-tamer to safecracker. Particularize a craft in the same general fashion as for Art: for instance, Craft (Cobbler), Craft (Barber), or Craft (Blow/Vacuum Tube).
The user changes posture, costume, and/or voice in order to seem another person or another sort of person. Theatrical makeup may help. Dim lighting definitely helps. Increase the chance for detection if the disguise involves significant differences in sex, age, size, or language. To look like a specific person, as opposed to a particular kind of person, halve the Disguise skill percentage – this sort of illusion is best left maintained by distance.
Dodge (DEX x 2%)
Allows an investigator instinctively to evade blows, thrown missiles, attacks from ambush, and so forth. A character attempting Dodge in a combat round may also parry, but not attack. Dodge can increase through experience, like other skills. If an attack can be seen, a character can try to dodge it. Against guns, a defender may try to dodge only the first bullet fired at him in a round.
Drive Automobile (20%)
Anyone with this skill can drive a car or light truck, make ordinary maneuvers, and cope with ordinary vehicle problems. If the investigator wants to lose a pursuer or trail someone, both participants might attempt Driving rolls until one fails and the other succeeds. Dangerous maneuvers always call for Drive rolls.
Electrical Repair (10%)
Enables the investigator to repair or reconfigure electrical equipment such as auto ignitions, electric motors, fuse boxes, and burglar alarms.
Fast Talk (05%)
Causes a target to agree with the user for a short time. Without reflecting, the target signs the paper, allows the trespass, lends the automobile, or whatever else within reason is asked. Given a little more time to think and the benefit of a successful Idea roll, the target comes to his or her senses, and the Fast Talk loses effect.
First Aid (30%)
The percentage change of awakening an unconscious or stunned comrade, setting a broken limb, treating burn damage, resuscitating a drowning victim, etc. First Aid has no effect on diseases or subtle physical ailments, nor on poisonings unless the keeper allows the roll. Treated with First Aid, an investigator’s healing rate stays at 1D6 points per day. (Moved to a hospital and successfully treated with Medicine, that rate rises to 2D3 per day.)
A self-explanatory skill, which might be depicted as a closed fist, a karate chop, a roundhouse punch, a violent slap, etc. One can use Fist/Punch to parry Kick and Head Butt, Martial Arts can add to the skill’s impact, and the knock-out rule applies to it (Keeper’s Note – the knock-out rule refers to attempting to use the blow to knock someone out instead of causing lethal damage. Some lethal damage will still be caused, but a D100 roll must be made to see if the attempt succeeded, pitting the damage that would have been caused against the target’s remaining hit-points on the Resistance Table. How such rolls are made will be explained in the Resistance Table section).
Enables an investigator to tell the approximate age of rock strata, recognize fossil types, distinguish minerals and crystals, locate promising sites for drilling and mining, evaluate soils, and anticipate volcanism, seismic events, avalanches, and other such phenomena. Sherlock Holmes was expert in London-area soils, and could trace a man’s movements by studying the dirt on his boots.
A grapple is a special personal attack, frequently chosen to subdue an opponent without harming him. This attack may be parried by a countering successful Grapple or other attack by the target, but only in the first round of attack
Any attempt to penetrate and control an analog or digital electronic system requires knowledge in hacking. Lower skills represent a kneen knowledge in electrical systems and early-mid 21st century digital computers. Those with knowledge exceeding 40% understanding programming up until the mid 2030’s with skills exceeding >65% indicating knowledge in quantum computing, future & corporate computing, AI/DataBrains and post singularity programming(2040).
Use for all pistol-like firearms when firing discrete shots. The rate-of-fire differences between handguns is partly from recoil and time needed to take new aim on the target, and partly from difference in mechanism between a revolver and a semi-automatic.
As opposed to Conceal, Hide concerns the individual user’s ability to escape detection in an unprepared position. Use this skill only in a pursuit situation, or when under surveillance or patrol. It lets the user choose objects, bushes, deep shadows, etc., in which to lurk for a while. Some sort of cover must be present. In an area being watched, the user can move while hiding. Figure the chance for successful movement by halving the Hide skill amount.
Enables an investigator to remember the significance of a country, city, region, or person, as pertinent. Lessen the chance if the facts are obscure. A successful History roll might be used to help identify tools, techniques, or ideas familiar to ancestors, but little known today.
Represents the chance of knowing pertinent law, precedent, legal maneuver, or court procedure. The practice of law as a profession can lead to great rewards and political office, but it requires intense application over many years. A high Credit Rating is crucial to it. No other profession is so easily sullied by the bizarre behavior common to investigators. In the United States, one’s practice of law must be sanctioned by the State Bar of a particular commonwealth or state. In another country, halve the chance for success with this skill, unless the character has spent 30-INT months studying that nation’s law.
The user may repair locks, make keys, or open locks with the aid of skeleton keys, picks, and other tools. Especially difficult locks may lower the chance for success. A locksmith can open car doors, hot-wire autos, jimmy library windows, figure out Chinese puzzle boxes, and penetrate ordinary commercial alarm systems. Sophisticated safes, vaults, and other serious defensive systems are beyond your skill.
Martial Arts (01%)
Use in combination with an attack with Fist/Punch, Head Butt, Kick, or Grapple. If the attack roll is equal to or less than the attacker’s Martial Arts percentage, the attack does double damage: thus Fist/Punch would do 2D3 plus normal damage bonus. Martial Arts doubles the damage done if the attack strikes home, but do not double any damage bonus.
The user diagnoses and treats accidents, injuries, diseases, poisonings, etc., and makes public health recommendations. If an era has no good treatment for a malady, the effort is limited, uncertain, or inconclusive. Failure in application requires that the user wait some amount of time to try again, but another practitioner could make his or her attempt in the next round.
Allows the user to find his or her way in storms or clear weather, in day at night. Those of higher skill are familiar with the astronomical tables, charts, instruments, and satellite location gear as they exist in the era of play. One could also use this skill to measure and map an area, whether an island of many square miles or the interior of a single room.
Use Persuade to convince a target about a particular idea, concept, or belief. (Like Fast Talk, Persuade may be employed without reference to truth.) Unlike Fast Talk, Persuade’s effect lingers indefinitely and insidiously, for years perhaps, until events or another Persuade turn the target’s mind in another direction. The successful application of Persuade might take an hour to several days, depending on what’s being attempted.
The air/water equivalent of Drive Automobile, this is the maneuver skill for flying or floating craft. An investigator might have several versions of this skill in the spaces on the investigator sheet. Each starts at 01% and counts as a different skill, and should be listed independently: Pilot Balloon, Pilot Dirigible, Pilot Civil Prop, Pilot Steam Ship, Pilot Sailboat, etc.
The user can fire any type of rifle, whether lever-action, bolt-action, or semi-automatic. When a shotgun fires a rifled slug, use this skill. Shots per round mostly vary because of the weapon’s action and recoil, and the subsequent time needed to reacquire the target.
With this skill any scatter-gun can be fired. Since the load expands in a spreading pattern, the user’s chance to hit does not decrease with range, but the damage done does. At ranges from 10-20 yards, 1D3 close-together targets can be hit with one round, and from 20-50 yards, 1D6 such targets can be hit. The keeper decides whether the targets are close enough for this rule.
The art of moving quietly, without alerting those who might hear. Used in combination with Hide, the investigator makes a single D100 roll, the result of which is matched against the investigator’s percentages in both skills. Use this combination when silent movement is necessary. See also Hide.
Spot Hidden (25%)
This skill allows the user to spot a secret door or compartment, notice a hidden intruder, find an inconspicuous clue, recognize a repainted automobile, become aware of ambushers, notice a bulging pocket, or anything similar. This is an important skill in the game.
With Track, an investigator can follow a person, vehicle, or animal over soft earth and leaves. Subtract 10% from the chance for success for each day that has passed since the tracks were made. Rain may make tracking impossible. A being cannot be tracked across water, over concrete, or at night except in unusual circumstances.
Melee Weapon (25%)
Any hand-to-hand weapon can be used in Call of Cthulhu. The possibilities are so numerous and often so strange that it is pointless to write them up as skills. Common classes of melee weapons are Clubs or Blunt Instruments, Foils or Rapiers, Knives, and Swords or Sabers.