StickGuy the Role Playing Game
A beer and pretzels (very tongue-in-cheek) rpg for people with absolutely no artistic talent by the guys at 1KM1KT
StickGuy is made to be a lighthearted romp into the world of roleplaying.A given game of StickGuy should be played in an evening with little to no preparation required. Just follow the rules, make a character, find a GM, copy the plot from some cheesy cable TV show, and go to it. StickGuy uses D4s. Why D4s Cause no one else uses them and they feel lonely.
Take a single D4 and roll it. The result is your POWER score. Record your Power on your character sheet (of course, in this case, character sheet refers to any available piece of paper that you have handy- or a cocktail napkin, or toilet paper, or your friends sweaty shirt, or whatever).
The inverse of your Power score is your KARMA score. If you have a 4 in Power, you have a 1 in Karma. A 3 in Power gives you a 2 in Karma and so on. Write your Karma down on your sheet.
Draw a stick figure on your character sheet (using the Six Body Parts; head, body, left arm, right arm you know the rest). You are now over half done with character creation. What you have on your character sheet is the beginnings of a StickGuy character.
For those of you who are slower than most, here is an example of what you should have thus far:
Now think hard. You must pick a PROFESSION for your StickGuy. Any profession will do. Label that profession in big letters and draw something onto your StickGuy to indicate that profession (ie: a player with a Traveling Salesman StickGuy would draw a simple briefcase).
The next step is to think of the things that make your stick guy special (special in this case probably referring to why your StickGuy rode the ShortStickBus to StickSchool). Pick three ATTRIBUTES that describe your StickGuy. Two of those attributes should be beneficial and the third should be a hindrance. Now, list those attributes clearly on your ever-so-complicated character sheet making sure to list the hindering attribute last (for Gawds sake, make sure it is last! This is easily the most important rule in StickGuy).
Please note that your character probably looks pretty plain right now. Take stock of your attributes and draw something onto your StickGuy to indicate each one of those attributes. For example, a Pretty StickGirl would have hair or a little skirt. An Angry StickGuy would have a frown and maybe some mean looking eyebrows (take note: never taunt an angry StickGuy. Trust us on this one). If you need more examples then you probably shouldnt be playing StickGuy.
The last step is to name your StickGuy. Pick 2 random pages in an available phonebook. On the first page select the first name you notice. That is now your StickGuys first name. Do the same for the second page. The second name is now your StckGuys last name.
There you are done. Seriously. Just to recap:
1) Roll a D4 to get a Power Score (as well as your Karma score)
2) Draw a stick figure and write down the Power and Karma scores
3) Give your figure a Profession- write it at the top and draw it on the figure
4) Pick 3 Attributes (2 beneficial, 1 hindering) and draw something appropriate on your figure for each attribute
5) Randomly generate a name.
Traveling Salesman of Doom,
Selected Attributes (reflected in the picture):
Deadly (wearing a ninja mask)
Strong (see the muscles)
Kinda Slow (untied shoelaces)
The Golden Rule for StickGuy:
Keep it simple. No elaborate drawings (and heaven forbid you include any detail). No complicated scenarios. No confusing backgrounds. No compound sentences. Nada.
At the point where you have to critically think about StickGuy then you are going about the whole game wrong. Rules debates are straight out.
First off, you are more than welcome to place the word Stick in front of any noun you would like during play. If you are crafty enough to place Stick onto a gerund or adverb- then bully for you. Of course, be careful, if you do add Stick to a gerund then you will lose experience cause you just made the game too damned hard (see the Golden Rule)
There is only one stat: POWER. That is it. No more, no less (okay, well, that isnt entirely true). Power measures your StickCharacters ability to get STUFF done. Stuff entails all sorts of things- just about anything you want your character to do in the course of the game. Wanna jump across a rooftop to another Your Power attribute will measure that. Wanna befriend a StickDog Power can do that too. Wanna win the lottery Well, if it is in StickTown, then yeah, Power covers that as well.
Besides Power there is Karma- which really isnt a stat, no matter what it looks like. Honest. Karma allows those StickGuys who got screwed in character generation to have their vengeance. Though more limited than Power, Karma points can be spent to turn just about any given situation to your StickGuys advantage. This is, perhaps, the most important rule in StickGuy.
In any event in which your attributes might come into play you can add a +1 or 1 as appropriate to your power. Thus, our Pretty StickGirl heroine who is flirting with the Surly StickGuy Mob Boss will get a +1 to her power cause the Lord of Organized StickCrime is impressed with her (because she is pretty). Alternately, a Stupid StickGuy might get a 1 to just about all situations- and yes, it is very possible to have a negative Power score in order to get Stuff done. Thems the breaks.
Getting Stuff done:
To get Stuff done the GM makes an arbitrary guess as to how difficult it is to do that Stuff. The harder it is to do, the higher the number. There, of course, is no upper limit, and difficulties of 16 are certainly not unheard of (and is probably encouraged for those bedamned players trying to make StickGuy into a real roleplaying game. Bah!).
The player rolls a D4 adding the result to the official StickGuy Power score of their character. The result, if higher than the difficulty assigned by the GM, is a success- and your Stickguy does his/her Stuff. If the result is equal to the difficulty assigned by the Stick GM (see how we just slipped that usage of stick in there Smooth as silk) then the action to do Stuff was not yet successful and the StickGuy character must wait another turn to do that Stuff.
Stopping Stuff from Happening:
To stop Stuff from happening you have two choices (both of which involve Karma- hey, we never said they were going to be good choices). Erase a Karma point from the character sheet and veto the Stuff. Thus, if someone tries to hurt your character, you can spend a Karma point and tell them No. That simple. Course, they could also spend a Karma point and veto your veto. Screw.
The second choice is to have someone loan you a Karma point. You can swing it however you want, but as long as you get some other chump player to say they will give you a Karma point and they do indeed erase that point then you gain a temporary Karma point to spend to prevent that aforementioned Stuff from happening. You may optionally yell fool and laugh at the player who gave you the Karma point (indeed, at this point it is not a loan. If they actually thought you were somehow going to pay them back then well maybe they will fall for it a second time).
To resolve a combat where StickGuys are trying to hurt one another (the horror!) you must have lots of pieces of paper handy. Post-it notes will do just fine. At the beginning of combat everyone needs to secretly draw what their character is doing on a sheet of paper. Feel free to add in props as appropriate, though the GM has an unending supply of Karma and so may veto any exceptionally stupid, outlandish, or complicated action. Also feel free to write names if need be to clarify beforehand exactly who you are laying the whammy upon.
Everyone reveals their piece of paper simultaneously. The player with the highest Power goes first- and their action is resolved (if two players have equal Power then a duel to the death is appropriate). The play then passes to the player (or NPSG) with the next highest Power and on down. Players may, at any time, feel free to spend Karma. This is, without a doubt, the most important rule in StickGuy.
If your character is hurt by something (well, just about anything) erase one the Six Body Parts and add an appropriate hindering attribute. When either the Body or the Head are erased, your character has gone to StickHeaven (which will be detailed shortly in a supplement).
If your character makes it through a game then they earn 1 experience point. If your character does something cool then at the end of the night you get 5 experience points (yes, even if your character dies you still get 5 experience points. Not sure what you are going to do with them, but there they are). The GM, at his or her whim, may hand at any other denominations of experience as they see fit oh, and since we are on a roll with this whole handin experience out thing then the GM gets 1 experience whenever they damn well please.
Now, what can you do with experience points Well, 1 experience point will allow your character to heal a body part. Other than that, it is up to the GM, its their game after all (and we here at 1km1kt are more than a bit lazy).
A StickGuy through adventuring may come up with some nifty equipment. At any point in a game, a player may announce they are picking up some piece of Appropriate equipment from their surroundings. Appropriate means anything the GM thinks fits the scene (see the Lexicon for an official definition). A banana in a Tropicana factory is Appropriate. Finding a Minigun in that same factory is not Appropriate. A StickGuy can only ever have four pieces of equipment at a time.
Often, a character may start with a piece of equipment if it is appropriate to their profession (and bully to you for being wily enough to weasel out an extra piece of equipment).
A StickGuy equipped with something useful in a given situation can gain a +1 to their roll. Something both useful and neat gains +2. This means that some items or pieces of equipment can be useful in one scene and both neat and useful in another it all depends on how the player explains the interaction of the equipment on the environment (yeah, its a drag having to be creative and all, but you gotta do something worth a full +2, no).
Using a crowbar you picked up in the last scene at a StickAutoBodyRepairShop to open a door will get you a +1. Using that same crowbar on a StickIncarnation of that fat purple bastard Barney will get you +2 cause that is both neat and useful.
A Katana always is +3. Screw all those other rules, this is, unquestionably, the most important rule in StickGuy.
Lexicon (to help avoid too much thinking):
- Power: The ability to get Stuff done.
- Stuff: The stuff done with Power (there, clear as mud).
- Attributes: The stuff that gives a StickGuy a bit of personality.
- StickGuy: Denizens of StickWorld. The have Power and do Stuff.
- Karma: Most definitely NOT a Stat.
- NPSG: Non-Player StickGuy. The StickGuys under the GMs control.
- Six Body Parts: Head, body, left arm, right arm, left leg, right leg and you do the hockey-pokey and you turn yourself around
- GM: Gary Marchant of Egan, Minnesota he is the guy in charge (and dont you forget it!)
- Profession: What your StickGuy complains about to his chums.
- Appropriate: A fancy rpg way of saying whatever the GM damn well pleases.
- Stat: Synonymous with Power and only Power, no matter what the GM says.
The Official StickGuy Setting:
The setting of Stickguy is just as serious as the character creation process. Be warned, this game is not for the feint of heart. In the city of StickTown there are all sorts of nasty things running around, not the least of which are the 1 lb Gorillas that people keep referring to.
StickTown is the only city on the planet in which the people of StickGuy live. It is a massive, sprawling metropolis, built upon the back of all sorts of crudely drawn laborers. In StickTown anything and everything is possible- just as long as the powers-that-be agree. You see, StickTown is not a carefree place where StickPeople run around, living their happy lives, and doing happy StickThings. Oh no. StickTown is a den of inequity, run by powerful organizations and driving the good people of StickTown under their heel.
and I bet you thought this was going to be a fun little game, huh
(Editors note: for those of you who care, and you know who you are, this is the first and only example of the StickPunk genre)
StickTown, in a nutshell, is a crude place, both in terms of the art and in terms of the political and social machinations that run the city. The city as a whole is ruled with an iron fist (though it should be mentioned that it is a tiny iron fist) by the Mayor. The Mayor is a ruthless man, determined to hang on to his power by any means necessary. He maintains his power through a whole host of contacts with the criminal organizations that operate within StickTown.
Under the Mayor are the leaders of the criminal organizations. In StickGuy the Mafia, the Yakuza, the Oganistazia, and Zombies all operate with the tacit approval of the Mayor.
Mechanics of the Factions of the City:
A faction may only be chosen for a particular character after that character makes it through their first game of StickGuy largely intact. A crafty GM will make membership in a faction worth experience (we here at 1km1kt suggest at least 5 character points make the players sweat a bit in that first game to see if they can get all that xp).
If you decide to make your character a member of a faction, then the character automatically gains access to that factions nifty mechanical benefits and abilities. The faction now becomes the characters profession and the character must adopt the appropriate corresponding attributes (there should be exactly one positive and one negative attribute associated with each faction). Joining faction means that you must also draw an appropriate addition onto your StickGuy. If you cant think of an appropriate drawing to add for your chosen faction then for gawds sake dont admit it and make something up. Youve come too far to admit that StickGuy is too complicated to your friends (theyre all going to laugh at you!)
The ability to decide on factions also means that at the beginning of any game you may decide to have your character affiliate themselves with one (and only one dont get greedy) faction. Yes, you may switch factions at the beginning of each an every game but be prepared to carry the wrath of lots of pissed off StickGuy factions (which, as we hear, is a really bad thing).
Every night, when the moon reaches its zenith (or is that nadir), the Zombies emerge from the sewers. Now, these are not some mis-named gang of street thugs or a slang term for the homeless. Nope, these are honest to goodness brain eating Zombies- or at least as real and as scary as a StickZombie can be.
Bonus Ability: Brains! If a zombie character eats another StickGuys brains then they can regenerate a lost body part.
Bonus Positive Attribute: Relentless
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Nasty
They manage the waterfront, warring with the Pirates that constantly raid the shore. They are known to do all sorts of dastardly things, especially with their elite pajama clad assassins, the feared Ninja.
Bonus Ability: On an attack roll of 4+ the Yakuza character can select any one body part of their opponent to erase (except the body or the head).
Bonus Positive Attribute: Slick
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Cocky
They are like the Mafia, but wear cool furry Russian hats and speak with a much more impressive accent.
Bonus Ability: Cooler than the Mafia because of that Hat. Organistazya members gain +1 to all rolls when fighting Mafia or Yakuza.
Bonus Positive Attribute: Remorseless
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Cranky
The 1000 lb Gorillas:
They mostly just sit around, occasionally causing havoc and generally doing it is whatever Gorillas do. It is whispered that they are the true movers and shakers of Sticktown. Of course, it is the Gorillas that do most of that whispering.
Bonus Ability: If a Gorilla decides not to move, there is nary a force in the StickUniverse that can move said primate. A Gorilla may spend one Karma and make it so that they cannot be moved from their position- not even with other players expending Karma (note that by other players this, of course, does not refer to Gary Marchant.) Similarly, when not moving (and with the Karma spent) a Gorilla cannot lose their head or body in combat (Yes, they are that hard to move). This ability is negated if the player has their Gorilla move. Bonus Positive Attribute: Really, Really Strong Bonus Hindering Attribute: Slow
Yup, if you have the Yakuza and Zombies, it is only a matter of time before the Templars show up (cause you know what they say, when you mix the undead and a bit of Japanese style organized crime, you are bound to end up with a secret order of disavowed holy knights or something like that). Most people who know of the Templars think that they work for the Mayor- implying that the Mayor is probably Catholic.
Bonus Ability: No Templar worth their salt will go anywhere without a SwordBoy (or StickSwordBoy in this case). The player of the Templar may make a bonus StickGuy character to represent the StickSwordBoy. The StickSwordBoy only gets no Power and only one Karma- but they are there for the Templar to control. Oh, yeah, the StickSwordBoy only gets one attribute: Feeble. StickSwordBoys can never gain experience (unless the GM says so).
Bonus Positive Attribute: Holy
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Arrogant
They live on their rickety wooden ships and occasional wander ashore for booty. They have the coolest acoutrements of any faction eye-patches, peg-legs, parrots, tattoos. The Pirates and the Yakuza are currently involved in a blood-war over some unnamed insult.
Bonus Ability: A Pirate starts with a cannon. A cannon is considered both neat and useful in any situation that involves water and/or boarding parties.
Bonus Positive Attribute: Resourceful
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Surly
Think about those annoying door-to-door magazine salesmen. Now, give those same pushy salesmen guns. Now, imagine those salesmen, with guns, drawn as a StickGuy. There, now you have the Mafia.
Bonus Ability: A Mafia made-man knows how to get out of any jam. A Mafia character gets one extra Karma point at the beginning of the game. This karma, like all good things, is lost at the end of the game if it is unspent.
Bonus Positive Attribute: Remorseless
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Cranky
They are probably the true power behind everything and are allied with the Yakuza. Best advice Dont screw with them. RealUltimatePower and all that. The Ninja are rumored to be fleeing the predations of the vile Samurai but thus far the Samurai have not made it to the city. Damned Samurai.
Bonus Ability: The Ninja are everywhere and nowhere at once. They can use a cover identity and retain their original profession while still being a Ninja (and a subtle player can keep their faction a secret this way). This also allows a Ninja to hide their bonus Attributes. Additionally, a Ninja must be killed twice (this last part is left for the GM to interpret. Sufficed to say that the Ninja of the City are a lot like katana-wielding cockroaches).
Bonus Positive Attribute: Mysterious
Bonus Hindering Attribute: Mentally Unbalanced
Tags: Chris Gunning