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Modiphius > Mutant: Year Zero (Free League Publishing)
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Homebrewed Role! The Rat

posted Mar 23, 2018 23:18:36 by WhateverICanGet
After taking a look through the core book, I noticed that there is no thief archetype, I don't think there's any in the expansions, so I decided to make my own!
Rat
You've never had the brut strength of an Enforcer, the silver tongue of a Fixer, the technical mind of a Gearhead, or a merry band of thugs like a Boss. All you had growing up was your cunning, and when that inevitably fails, you can always fall back on the tricks up your sleeve.

Typical names: Neem, Erris, Dek, Shimshem, Flim, Jabe, Wik, Pip, Nat, Jeen.
Mouse names: Reppy, Roofy, Ed.
Key Attribute: Agility.
Specialist Skill: Rat Tricks.

Coming up with names was probably the hardest part for this. In general I tried to think of arbitrary words that felt thematic while also keeping in mind that some of the names for the real roles are butchered pronunciations of real names. As a note Roofy is short for Rufus.

Skill: Rat Tricks (Agility)
You've used your life's supply of good luck just to get this far, but you made sure it was worth it by learning from your mistakes. You have cunning, fast hands, and you know things even Chroniclers don't. Rat tricks can be used for a lot of different things. Most of which other mutants don't like.

Pickpocketing:
It's one thing to sneak into someone's den while they're asleep and steal their shit. It's another to steal it off of them when they are awake. Most of the time these items will be of light weight at biggest.
Failure: You get caught, and if you're really lucky, you can get away with nothing but a slap across the face.
Success: You accidentally bump into some guy… you also get what you wanted.
Stunts: Every additional 6 can give you an additional light item of theirs, 1d6 of their bullets, 2 rations of clean water, 2 rations of grub, or 1 of each. A 6 can be stacked together with your original success to lift a standard sized item (gm discretion) instead of a light one. 2 6s can be stacked to lift either 2d6 bullets, 1d6+1 Grub, or 1d6+1 water.

Walking Through Walls:
Rats always find a way in or out. Picking a lock with a bobby pin, sliding an old credit card between door and frame, listening to a safe knob, squeezing through a crack in the wall, or escaping bondage. You're a natural houdini! Sure you could just kick down the door, but that's loud… and messy. Passing barriers is not an easy thing to do; often requiring up to 10 minutes.
Failure:
Exactly what happens when you fail depends on the situation. But here are some suggestions:
Your pick gets jammed in the lock. Now it will never open.
You get stuck halfway through the hole you’re squeezing through. You’re going to either wait for help, or strain yourself to get out.
You get caught in the act. If they don’t attack you, they’ll surely try to blackmail you.
You hurt yourself for 1 damage trying to escape bondage.
You spend 4 hours trying before giving up.
Success:
You get past the barrier preventing entry or egress.
Stunts:
You can spend an additional 6 to finish the task in 2 maneuvers, and/or make it look like no one broke in.

Sleight of Hand:
Your hands needed to be fast and precise, so obviously you know a few magic tricks and how to hide stuff on your person. Just don’t expect to get the same applause as a Chronicler telling a story.
Failure:
You’re not fooling anyone.
Success:
You hide an object of light weight or smaller on your person or somewhere nearby. Anyone who wants to find it makes an opposed scout roll.
Stunts:
Every 6 can add an additional object to be concealed. A 6 can be stacked together with your original success to allow your original item to be of standard size (gm discretion). If performing for a crowd in the Ark (once per session), every 6 can gain you a bullet or ration of grub.

I thought of the things a Rogue could do, and ended up with a huge list of things. So many that I had to transfer some of them into the talents section. I don't exactly like the name "Walking Through Walls", but I felt something like "Houdini" wasn't thematic enough and "Escape Artist" implies you're never going to try to break in. Sleight of Hand felt too similar to the Performer talent, but then I realized that players would try to do it at some point anyway, so I just made it a nerfed version, mostly there for novelty.

Appearance
Choose from the options below or decide for yourself.
Face: Hidden under a hood, sickly pale, transparent skin, no one can tell under all that dirt.
Body: Short, wiry, scrawny.
Clothes: Dirty hoodie, torn rags, worn leather jacket, barefoot, fingerless gloves.

Transparent skin seemed like something a mutant would have, and it also fits with the idea that you scurry in the darkness so much that you have zero pigment.

Talents
Smooth Operator:
+1 Bonus to all Rat Tricks rolls for Walking Through Walls, Pickpocketing, and Sleight of Hand.
Fast Talker:
Agility is used in place of Empathy when rolling to Manipulate.
Of Mice and Mutants:
You have a pet mouse. It's small and week, just like you (light item), maybe that's why it likes you so much. This mouse has 1 Strength and 6 Agility, along with -3 dice to spot or hit it and a bite damage of 1 that can't be increased with a stunt. Though it's a coward that will only attack when you or it are in danger. You can use your Rat Tricks to use it for scouting like a Dog Handler, or to perform simple tasks like chewing through ropes or stealing a bullet. Also like a Dog Handler, you can get sympathy from your mouse. Finally, if your mouse dies, you can find another one like a Dog Handler using your Rat Tricks skill. On a fail, expect to find a swarm of zone rats. Does not stack with Smooth Operator.

I kept in mind that Talents don't always have to do with the Specialist Skill, and as I said, I couldn't fit all my ideas into the skill. Originally Smooth Operator was supposed to be a +2 bonus, but seeing how other talents of a similar nature give it to a specific use of the skill instead of everything, I decided to tone it back. Of Mice and Mutants was difficult to do, and I feel like it overlaps too much with the Dog Handler, but at the same time I really liked the concept, and decided to keep it. Besides, it can only do 1/3 things Sic a Dog can.

Relationships to other PCs
Choose from the options below or decide for yourself.
… is someone you don't want to anger.
… is wasteful and decadent.
… might just see the world the way you do.
… is someone you stole from, whether they know it or not.

I knew I wanted to make this role someone who avoids conflict and struggles with (relative) poverty, but I had trouble thinking of a fourth suggestion that didn't feel similar to another. I actually changed it again between these sentences.

Relationships to NPCs
Choose from the options below or decide for yourself.
You hate:
The Fixer Sixter, who always flashes his wealth.
The Rat Tem, who tries (and has succeeded) to beat you to the treasure.
The Enforcer Elon, who always beat you, even as a kid.
You need to protect:
The Rat Remmy, you've looked out for each other for as long as you can remember.
The Boss Marlotte, she pays well for your talent.
The Enforcer Jonats, you need him to protect yourself.


Your Big Dream
Choose from the options below or decide for yourself.
To find security that lasts for more than a few days.
To find someone who will love you back.
To prove you have worth and gain the admiration of the whole Ark.


Gear
You start the game with D6 bullets, D6 rations of grub and D6 rations of water.
Choose from the following starting weapons: Scrap Derringer, scrap knife, slingshot. You can buy extra gear with your bullets.

A knife and Derringer certainly seemed like a good fit as both are light weight and concealable. Also a slingshot feels like a good pick for a rascal. On that note, I should probably mention an error I found in the book. In Chapter 6 a slingshot isn't considered a light weapon but it is in the Goods & Services table. I picked these weapons under the assumption that a slingshot isn't light, otherwise there would be no point in using the derringer (Slingshot' already have a lack of noise, better range, and doesn't cost money to use going for it already).

Typical NPC Stats
Strength: 2 Agility: 5 Wits: 2 Empathy: 3 Skills: Rat Tricks 3, Sneak 2, Manipulate, 1

Random Generation of NPCs
Name: Neem, Goal: Self Preservation Weapon: Bicycle chain
Name: Nat, Goal: Please the Boss Weapon: Slingshot
Name: Dek, Goal: Become the best thief in the Ark Weapon: Scrap knife
Name: Pip, Goal: Become a folk hero Weapon: Scrap derringer
Name: Flim, Goal: Serving cold revenge to anyone that wrongs him Weapon: Scrap Rifle
Name: Jabe, Goal: To have a friend Weapon: Slingshot

Let me know what y'all think.
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