State of the Commonwealth - More Advantages and Disadvantages for Knights-Marshal of the Commonwealth!

Clint Staples

One of the things that I love about BASH is that it is so adaptable. That goes for modding it for any type of setting – I have run Post-Apocalypse, Fantasy, Post Apocalyptic Fantasy, Modern, Modern-Mythical and Historical Supers, and, obviously, Sci Fi, with KMotC. And to do all of it, I have had very little cause to go beyond the core of BASH.

But one of the coolest things about BASH, is actually that it is soooo easy to write additions to it to tailor the game to the setting or play experience that you are looking for. So I have been writing new Advantages and Disadvantages somewhat specific to playing Knights-Marshal. You saw some last week, with some species specific Psionic Advantages, etc.

Now in BASH there is a type of Advantage that allows you, once per session, to break a specific rule of the game. For example, in the Supers book, as befits the genre, Versatile allows a hero to use a power she possesses in a new way, essentially using the ‘fluff’ or non-system rationale for a power to use a different power for a scene. SO, the pyrokinetic Hell-Kite, who can fly on wings of fire, and manipulate flames, might use her Versatile to grant her a protective sheath of flames to melt bullets as they strike her. Very Cool, right? And its gets cooler, because ANY HERO can do the same thing, access Versatile, whether that have the advantage or not, by paying 5 Hero Points. What Hell-Kite gets by taking the advantage, is a single free use of that ability. What others need to pay 5 Hero Points for, Hell-Kite can do for free – once.

But the cool keeps coming. The author of BASH, Chris Rutkowsky, came up with the notion that someone who has taken a single use advantage like Versatile is probably better at doing it than someone who hasn’t - so that person can re-access the same advantage a second time, or as often as they like, in a session, for three, instead of the usual five Hero Points.

The idea being that a hero who has, say, Quick Thinking, which allows that character to interrupt the normal turn order once per session, to take their page of activity, is better able to repeat this feat than someone who is not normally able to do so. So the character with Quick Thinking can do it again for the reduced cost for 3 Hero Points instead of 5.

I have written the Advantages below with this reduced cost for re-use in mind. They provide a useful benefit as they are, but what they really do is encourage the player to make that Advantage a part of the character’s ‘style’. So a master marksman or gun-fu type might take Dead-Eye to make that crucial shot count. But he can do it again, better and easier than his cohort. But when it comes to picking up the trail of a fugitive, Dead-Eye can’t hold a candle to the ‘Blood Hound’. And since they can each use their ability again for 3 Hero Points instead of 5, each is likely to do so. Dead-Eye can make another called shot for 3 Hero Points, and Bloodhound can make sure that they pair stays on the trial of their fugitive.



Dead-Eye: Your ability to hit the mark is phenomenal. Once per session, you may ignore the +10 difficulty of a called shot.

Bloodhound: Once per session, when you are following a particular series of clues, be it a physical trail, or the investigation of a murder, you may invoke ‘Bloodhound’ to gain a +10 Result Bonus to any deduction or knowledge-related roll that is directly related to the task at hand. You may do this after the roll, and its degree of success, has been determined. Note that this will ensure at least a basic success on a roll of Normal difficulty [Difficulty 10].



And below are a couple of Disadvantages that might help keep the Hero Points flowing:

Curious: Some people cannot resist a mystery, an unopened door, a derelict spaceship, or a forgotten tomb. When your Curiosity complicates your life, or those of your companions, remind the GM to give you a Hero Point.

Impoverished: You begin plan with only 3Mc to purchase gear. In addition, you are a spendthrift, throwing away your money on high living, extravagance, needless purchases, or simply by paying too much for things. Each time you come into money, set aside roughly 1/2 of whatever you have. If you like, you may roleplay expenditures as you fritter it away on essentially useless things or embellishments, but you lose it nevertheless. When you have spent the requisite funds, remind the GM to give you a Hero Point.