Aether V1.3 Beta Now Available!
1.3 Is Here!
Version 1.3 of the Aether core rules is now available, and you'll find it titled V1.3 Beta for a reason: I've made quite a few small mechanical changes that I'm a bit unsure of, so for a time both the older 1.2 version and the newer 1.3 will be available until I can get some concrete feedback on how much one or the other works. Thankfully, playtesting should begin soon. That said, here's a rundown of the changes.
New Character Sheet
The changes required a new character sheet, which is two pages shorter and much cleaner than the previous version. The biggest changes are to the layout of the sheet (it's now landscape rather than portrait) and the previous Skills quick reference has changed significantly to support changes to both card suits and Potential.
- Card suits are now assigned to the different skill categories and shown as such on the 1.3 character sheet (clubs= combat, spades= social, hearts= magic, diamonds= utility). This is to facilitate tracking and generating more Potential and more Limit Breaks to use in play. This also means that there's less worry about "fixing" the actions you have available during combat and more about getting cool bonuses for matching suits. It will hopefully make combat scenarios run more smoothly and be less confusing with regards to what players can do.
- You can now spend 5 Potential from a single tracker (Combat, Social, Magic and Utility skills each track their own potential) to Limit Break a skill check involving a relevant skill.
- Playing 2 or more cards that match the suit of your skill during a Skill Check generates 1 Potential for that skill category. Generating more potential means more fun and it encourages you to spend more of it!
- You now only have 2 Character Values to track instead of 4. This was a sheet space issue more than anything, but since Values generate potential and we now have MORE ways to generate it, it felt like a fair trade.
- There are more ways to spend potential! You can extend the range of your skills, add status effects, expand the number of targets, change things from single targets to AOE etc. Basically, anything that feels like a stretch of your skill's description can be achieved through Potential. Potential is now much more of the core resource for the game.
- Skill upgrades are split into Active and Passive upgrades, and you're encouraged to make your own skill upgrades using new guidelines and the pre-constructed ones as examples! Make your character play exactly the way you want to.
- Range and Targets have been simplified and standardized. All combat skills depend on the weapon being used for Range, while Magic, Social and Utility skills have a range equal to your Skill Level if you attempt to use them in combat. Everything starts with 1 target, which you can change with upgrades or Potential.
- Range has been reduced solely to Zones, which are more abstract but intended to scale up for mass warfare rules to keep everything straightforward.
- Attacks and movement have changed. Creatures must be in the same Zone to attack in melee, Reach attacks target an adjacent Zone, and everyone moves 1 Zone at a time when they take a movement action.
- Attacks of Opportunity have now been added for players that want to take those chances.
- Added an entire section detailing different types of skill checks players can make and how to mechanically represent those types of actions in a pinch!
So, as you can see, quite a few small changes that really stacked up over time, but all in the name of streamlining the in-play experience... even if they did add two extra pages to the overall document (darn page breaks!). Hope you all enjoy the new and improved Aether RPG, and do let me know of any feedback you might have about the changes!
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