#RPG – Actual Fucking Nightlife – Part Two – Powers

Nightlife has a lot of powers that can be easily recreated from the Monster Powers in AFM. Some, however, aren’t as straightforward. You can also consider these a bit of a dry-run for some additional powers in a companion book for AFM.

If you have any questions or queries about Actual Fucking Monsters, or Power or Monster Profile (or enemy!) requests. Let me know in the comments or message me on social media.

Acid Vomit
You can vomit a stream of acrid fluid, out to a distance equal to your Acid Vomit rating in metres, halved. It reduces one die type of insanity every two turns (keeping the original attack roll) until it has all reacted out. A single human-sized target can be engulfed by the power.

Slippage: Unnatural pigment, rancid stench, burnt lips and tongue, constant belching.

Astral Projection
You can leave your body and float, psychic and invisible, through the world. You trail a long astral tether back to your own body and can engage with other psychic and astral entities while in this form. Your die type’s maximum possible roll provides the maximum number of hours you can be separate from your body and the maximum distance in kilometres (16/36/64/100/144).

Slippage: Slight afterimage, glowing eyes, silvery sheen.

Control Weather
You can exert power to change the weather around you by spending a level of Satiation. The difficulty to do this is based on the intensity of the current weather and how strongly it fits the current season and environment. If, for example, you’re in England and it is raining (a light drizzle) in the Autumn, then the difficulty to change that weather will be an unchallenging d4/d4. If you’re in the Southern US and trying to avert or dissipate a tornado, the difficulty would be a more challenging d12/d12. You affect an area around you with a radius in kilometres equal to the highest possible roll on your Monster Power die type (4/6/8/10/12 km). Stopping the eye of a hurricane or a tornado will have an effect on a far broader surrounding area, of course.

With weather control you can shift the weather by one degree of intensity, and another degree for every two points you beat the difficulty by. To create a new kind of weather you must first reduce the current intensity to nothing, and then build the new intensity. The default weather depends on where you are, but is ‘the usual’. In Britain, for example, it would be ‘overcast’.

  • Rain Intensity Levels: Spotting, Drizzle, Rain, Heavy Rain, Hammering Down.
  • Sun Intensity Levels: Bright, Intense, Dazzling, Sweltering, Heat Wave.
  • Fog Intensity Levels: Faint,Wispy, Misty, Foggy, Can’t See your Hand in Front of Your Face.
  • Wind Intensity Levels: Breezy, Strong Breeze, Gale, Storm, Hurricane.

Example: Takash is hiding out in a small agricultural village near the border of Syria. The farmers there are having a rough time due to a drought, so he uncharacteristically sets out to help. The weather is a heat wave (d12), and while climate change is playing a role, that’s not that typical for the area (d8). Takash has Control Weather at d10 and Occult d8 from his Mask. He dresses it up with a little ritual, disconcerting the locals somewhat. The weather rolls a difficulty of 12, Takash rolls 15. For hitting 12 he can change the heat by one degree to Sweltering, for hitting 14 (two points over), he can reduce it to Dazzzling. At least the irrigation can be more effective and he can always try again, it’ll be easier now.

Slippage: Constant draught, lightning behind your eyes, hair standing on end, clammy skin, glowing skin, sky blue skin and white hair.

Danger Sense
Add your Monster Power die level to your Initiative. You will almost always go first. If ambushed, roll your Monster Power die type in Danger Sense and if you score four or more you are not ambushed and get your turn as normal, on your Initiative turn.

Slippage: Additional eyes, sensory hairs, twitching motions and turns of the head, frills that rise in the presence of danger, pounding heartbeat, nervous tics.

Demagogue
By spending a point of Satiation and exerting your power over a crowd you can attempt to change or incite a particular mood in a crowd, depending on the intensity of their current mood. This works similarly to Control Weather, but the difficulty is virtually always a d8 (for the average mental resilience of a human being) plus the intensity of the existing emotion.

A happy crowd at a rock concert, might be d8+d8 for difficulty. A furious lynch mob chasing down a Monster that they think killed a child might be d8+d12. The default mood is passive, and is d8+d8.

  • Happy: Smiling, Amused, Happy, Joyous, Rapturous.
  • Sad: Frowning, Unamused, Unhappy, Depressed, Grieving.
  • Angry: Discontent, Grumbling, Angry, Furious, Murderous.
  • Fear: Uneasy, Nervous, Afraid, Scared, Terrified.

Example: Fenwick is ensconced in a crowd at a football match. He needs to feed and planned to use the cover of hooliganism and violence, but the crowd is too happy for his liking. He rolls his Monster Power level (d8) plus his Mind (d10) to try and sway the crowd. The crowd scores 14, he scores 15 which is only enough to slightly sour their mood, moving them from happy to amused.

Slippage: Deep or sonorous voice, exaggerated expressions, unnaturally large mouth, swollen head, glittering aura.

Direction Sense
You have an infallible sense of where you are, no matter what. Not necessarily ‘where’ as in a map or grid reference, or what town or city, but ‘where’ in relation to north, south, east and west and in relation to places you are familiar with. You might know that you’re ‘about ten miles north of home’, for example, but not that you’re locked in the cellar of the Parson’s house in Chickenburg.

Slippage: Metallic lines on your skin, slightly larger sense organs, metallic pupils, bird-like twitching.

Drain (Life Force, Blood, Fear, Youth, Pain, Petrification, Heat)
This replaces Life Drain with a more generic power that can be used to feed (but not regain Satiation unless the act is also your transgression) and to heal.

You must get a firm grip on your target or have direct eye contact for Petrification, then you can suck the appropriate type of energy or fluid from them. This must be a sizeable living thing such as a person, dog or cow. You roll your Trio, appropriate Skill and Drain dice and beat the target’s Body and appropriate second die. If you succeed you drain the appropriate energy and recover a level of Health.

Draining life force does one level of damage to a target that is successfully drained, and heals you by that amount. You will also not require any food or drink for a day.

Draining blood does the same as draining life force, but drained blood – extracted by whatever means – can be stored. One health die level is enough for one blood meal. You won’t need to eat or drink on a day you have a blood meal.

Draining fear causes the target to become irrationally and indefatigably brave for 24 hours, which is something you might not want to do to a hunter. It heals you one level and means you don’t have to eat or drink for a day.

Draining youth causes the target to age a number of years equal to your Monster Power die roll in making the drain attempt. It regains you a die level of health and you do not need to eat or drink for a day. If the ageing process takes them past the age of seventy they take a die level of damage for that and each five years over. If they’re already over that age it’s one automatic level of damage and another one for every five years or part-thereof.

Draining pain causes the target to gain a level of Armoured, representing their temporary immunity to further torture. They may engage in more risk-taking and violent behaviour due to feeling invulnerable.

Petrifying a target rolls Mind+Appropriate Skill for the attack (at -2 if they’re aware of your power) and rolls damage at its die type as though it were a weapon. Completely petrifying a person restores a health die and precludes you from needing to eat or drink for a day.

Draining heat works in exactly the same manner as Drain Life Force, but with the side effect of coldness and loss of body heat.

  • Slippage (Life Drain): Pale skin, greenish pallor, cold flesh, pointed canines, yellow nails, acrid stench.
  • Slippage (Blood Drinking): Obvious fangs, pale skin, coppery smell, red eyes.
  • Slippage (Fear Drain): Unsettling expressions, exaggerated features, distorted sounds, black eyes.
  • Slippage (Youth Drain): Aged appearance, wrinkled and sunken, milky eyes, long fingers, broken yellow nails.
  • Slippage (Pain Drain): Pierced and twisted flesh, sharpened nails, serpent-like eyes, small horns.
  • Slippage (Heat): Pale flesh, vapour breath, blue skin, ice-blue eyes.

Empathic
You can read the emotional state of another being, at least one that is capable of having or expressing emotion in a noticeable way. They must be within line of sight and in order to read them you make a Monster Power and Mind roll against the target’s resistance (Mind plus any appropriate training). Succeeding lets you read their overall emotion, while every two additional points of success gives you a bit more nuance or deeper reading into that emotional state.

For example, while questioning someone you could attempt to read their emotions in order to get a better angle on how to question them or gauge their reactions. In this situation a simple success would let you read that they were nervous (no, d’uh), while another degree of success could allow a read of underlying reticence, holding something back. Another degree of success on top of that could allow the reading of the spike in emotions when a particular question upsets them.

Slippage: Golden halo, glowing aura, kaleidoscope eyes, deformed head.

Flight
Through wings or some other manner of power you can take flight – but cannot hover, at least not for long. Your Flight die determines the maximum height and speed at which you can fly. 16/36/64/100/144 kilometres per hour or metres in height. You can carry one extra person with you, so long as your Flight die is higher than a d4.

Slippage: Bat wings, angel wings, small feathers in your wake, your feet never quite touch the ground, constant draught.

Heart Attack
You can reach out towards someone and cause their heart to stop working, to spasm and fit, crippling them and doing damage to them. You must be within ten metres of the target and be able to gesture with your arm to enact the power. You roll your Power Die + Mind against their Body, if you succeed they are reduced to one action per turn for the duration and take a single die level of damage to their health. You can maintain this effect over several turns, continuing to cause damage and keeping the target relatively paralysed. So long as you continue to succeed you gain an accumulating +1 bonus to the roll each turn.

Slippage: Bloody fingers, staring eyes, black-ringed eyes, visible veins, audible heartbeat, organs visible through skin.

Heightened Sense
One of your senses is heightened to an abnormal degree. You can add your Monster Power die to rolls relating to that sense (sight, touch, hearing, smell, taste). This can also allow you to perform remarkable feats relating to that sense, reading microfiche with the naked eye, feeling the thread count on a cotton sheet, hearing a conversation a block away, smelling the particular constituents of someone’s scent or tasting hints to the provenance of particular foods.

Slippage: Distorted or enlarged sensory organs relating to the sense involved, or additional or strange sensory organs like antennae, cilia or sensory pits.

Necrocommunication
You can communicate with the dead. This requires the expenditure of a point of Satiation, and the presence of all or part of the deceased (a fistful of ashes is sufficient, provided it is mostly from the deceased rather than wood or something else used to burn them). Those who have died a violent or unjust death are easier to summon, while those who have died a peaceful death are harder. The relative violence and unjust nature of the death sets the intensity of the difficulty (d4-d12) while the amount of time they have been dead for determines the other dice of difficulty. D4 for days, d6 for weeks, d8 for months, d10 for years and d12 for any longer than that. Only the spirits of humans or Monsters can be raised in this way, and not if their soul or spirit has been otherwise claimed.

Slippage: Grey pallor, milky eyes, rotten smell, echoing voice, rasping croaky voice.

Reanimator
You can raise the fleshy corpse of a person or animal, provided it still has sufficient muscle mass to move, even if it is old or mummified. This Zombie has d4 in everything and d4 in the Armoured Monster Power. It can perform even complex tasks, so long as its master is close by (25 metres) or so. Raising a corpse requires that you spend a level of Satiation, maintaining it in undeath also costs a level of Satiation every 4/6/8/10/12 days, depending on your die in the power. Unsupervised zombies revert to an animalistic and feral state and seek to devour living flesh. If they can kill – and feast – they can maintain their undeath for another 4 days.

Slippage: Grey pallor, milky eyes, green mist surrounding you, glowing green gaze, twitchy motions, cold flesh.

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