Something happened to your town to make this possible. Maybe there was a strange meteor a few years back, or a solar flare at high noon in Summer with you right underneath. Maybe it was a drug trial run on your parents before you were born, or just being downstream from that plant they said was totally safe. Whatever is was, over the last few years a few of the kids around your age have been developing powers.
One of the know-it-all kids convinced everyone that the adults wouldn’t understand, that the government would come and take you away, and that was enough to keep a bunch of rebellious adolescents quiet. At least for a few months, until one of the oldest kids with powers freaked out a couple weeks ago, totally wrecked the school. Turns out the know-it-all was right: the government descended on your town and took him away. Now they’re constantly hanging around and asking questions and the rest of you are having a real hard time keeping cool.
It was only so long before the stress got so bad someone would blow. Nobody thought the day would be bad enough that you’d all flip out at once…
- Why can’t you rely on your parents or another adult to help you? Think about what kind of troubled young teen with superpowers you want to be. This matters because it forces you to be self reliant.
- Who do you just know is going to be on the news claiming they always thought you were trouble? Think about your petty small town rivalries and what you did to deserve them. This matters because it gives the GM hooks to personalize your opposition.
- Where do you plan to run? Think about the plans a kid with no resources or real understanding of the world would make to try to get away. This matters because it allows the GM to structure the first session or two.
- What is too important to leave behind? Think about a possession or loved one that you’ll risk your own safety to hang onto and take with you on the run. This matters because it gives you an early goal.
- What just happened? Think about what kind of terrible day would cause you to reveal your powers in a way that will immediately out you as a threat. This matters because it allows the GM to structure the first scenes and get you all together.
- Discipline remains unaltered, though it’s colored by the kind of competencies available to adolescents rather than full adults. Since there are no responses, when discipline dominates you can decrease Stress by one or Scrutiny by one.
- Exhaustion becomes Stress; picture becoming more effective but scared because of adrenaline. Like normal, you can raise it by one intentionally and it automatically increases by one when it dominates. When it exceeds six, you crash.
- Madness becomes Recklessness; you can achieve a lot more if you’re willing to risk getting noticed. Like madness, you can vary the number of these dice you add to any roll. When recklessness dominates, increase Scrutiny by one.
- Exhaustion talents become Aptitudes, and represent the thing you’re best at and get better at as the going gets tough. They work identically to exhaustion talents (minimum success equal to your Stress automatically, or take on another Stress die to add your Stress to the successes).
- Madness talents become Powers. Pick something big and flashy; it needs to be versatile and capable of massive collateral damage. Energy projection, telekinesis, and super strength are great choices. Like madness talents, to use your power (voluntarily) you must add Recklessness dice to your roll equivalent to the level of the effect you want to create.
- Pain becomes Danger, but is essentially unchanged. The GM always rolls at least one danger die, and can roll up to nine. When danger dominates, gain a coin of Catastrophe: even if the character succeeded, he or she made a mistake that will come back to haunt the group later.
- Scrutiny starts at zero, and represents the intensity with which the authorities are looking for the player characters. It’s increased by crashing and Recklessness dominating. Add these dice to every roll: even when there aren’t police and FBI agents actively in the scene chasing the characters, the effects of the manhunt on the behavior of the rest of the world and the intensity of the scene are palpable. When scrutiny dominates, if the result was a failure, the acting character is captured and will have to be rescued by the others (but reduce Scrutiny by 2). If the result was a success, the group must immediately face a new Danger 3 (plus Scrutiny) challenge of a group of cops or agents; obviously, if Scrutiny is high enough to keep dominating, this could keep going until someone is captured.
Crashing and Snapping
- Crashing causes you to erupt in a storm of powers, probably causing massive property damage and casualties, immediately raising Scrutiny by 3. You pass out afterwards (for hours rather than days), leaving your friends to figure out what to do with you (and probably resulting in a capture and reduction of Scrutiny by 2 if you were not in a position to be saved before the authorities got you), but you have your full Discipline and other capabilities when you wake up.
- Snapping is mostly rolled into Crashing; instead, the secondary threat to characters is Scrutiny getting high enough that they’re faced with immediate capture.
- Coins of Despair become Coins of Catastrophe. They represent mistakes the player characters made catching up to them. They work the same as despair, and generate coins of Hope when used.
- Coins of Hope are unchanged.