Tag Archives: tactics

[History Farce] Fanmail is Awesome

Court Cov FINAL

Any author will tell you fanmail is awesome and it is but to us game authors what is especially awesome when we get fanmail that not only confirms our games are being played but tells how people are house-rulling them.

With the permission of it’s author Chris K I hearby reproduce my latest piece of fanmail for all to see.

Hi Ian,

I recently bought Courtesans ( there was a money-off coupon in Autopsy 4 ) and found it an enjoyable read and a fun game. Thanks for writing it. The subject is one I had already read a bit about while researching another game . I too have Katie Hickmans book, and can recommend Joanne Richardsons’ “The Courtesans” and Lisa Hiltons’ “Athenais – The Real Queen of France”

I ran through a couple of Seasons solo ( roll dice for every choice – please, aid or intrigue? D6. Type of pleasing? weight by good stat and D6 it. ) before playing a game with the group. It quickly became a competitive orgy of backstabbing and outrageous behaviour, and was great fun, if a bit near the edge at times.

The following ideas came up, and I have attempted to codify them. What do you think of them? ( I tend to overwrite things, but perhaps you could work out how to use the ideas ). The group sex idea is because we felt that the rule for pleasing two admirers didn’t quite capture the naughtiness and scandal of the thing ( and is partly inspired by Cora Pearl serving herself up as dessert for six gentlemen to outdo a rival who had bathed in milk and been dried lasciviously by her maids to tease and entertain a group of her admirers ). Hope you don’t think me rude – I’m not trying to say that there was anything wrong in the game, it’s just that we tinker with stuff as a matter of course and want to share our ideas, yes?

Again, thanks for the game

Cheers; Chris

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Kinky

This counts as a deception feature in an admirer.

The Admirers desires are irregular in a Scandal producing way. They will need this Scandalous Pleasing Action performed once per season at least to remain a Visiting Admirer. The nature of this kink is such that it is worth a point of Scandal if revealed. Any Courtesan successfully indulging this kink gets +1 to their margin of success for resource earning. Sex acts other than those pertinent to the Kink are made at -1.

The nature of the kink will vary, but ranges from the Capital Crime of anal sex to the embarrasing vice of transvestism.

{ Perhaps the Kink should be indulged at least twice per Season if they are Keeping the Courtesan? }.

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Limited Funds

This counts as a deception feature in an Admirer.

The Admirer has a cap on the amount of Wealth that can be extracted from them in any one season. This may be because they are on an allowance, are dependent on earning a living, or have fixed income of another sort. For whatever reason, once the cap is reached then only non-Wealth Resources can be earned from them until next Season.

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Actions:

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Blackmail

Description: A Courtesan may, through desperation or meanness of spirit, blackmail one of her Visiting Admirers. She threatens to reveal the salacious details of their encounters if she is not bought off. The attempt at blackmail will cause the Admirer to immediately Scorn the Courtesan whether or not it succeeds.

Attackers Statistic: Spite of course.

Defenders Statistic: Pliability plus Landladies dice.

Resource Options: Usually Wealth, although other favours can be extorted. A successful Blackmail attempt gives resources equal to the margin of success plus 1 for every potentially Scandalous Action that has been shared between the Courtesan and her (now ex-) Admirer. A failed or revealed attempt costs a point each of Reputation and Legend, plus a loss to those resources equal to the margin of failure ( divided between the two ). A failed attempt imposes a -1 on the number of Admirers generated by any futrue procurement rolls. People don’t like that sort of thing.

Scandal Infliction: If the attempt at blackmail fails the margin of failure is suffered as Scandal. If another Courtesan discovers the blackmail it may be used to inflict a point of Scandal. Repeated instances of blackmail earn an extra point over and above the points for the action itself. Each instance of blackmail that the Demi-Monde is aware of reduces the number of Admirers generated by a Procurement by 1.

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Orgy / Group Sex

Description: The Courtesan entertains several Admirers at once.

This needs to be set up in advance by inviting the participants with individual Pleasing Actions ( and stating at the time that the invitation to the prospective event is being extended ). These Actions are at -1 to the Courtesans dice, due to the shocking nature of the proposal ( this modifier is reversed to +1 by a Group Sex Kink in the admirer ). The date for the meeting must be set in advance and must be in the same Season. If an Admirer Spurns the Courtesan before that Turn they will not attend, and if fewer than three attend the Action fails and must be resolved as a Sex Act with a -1 modifier ( due to disappointment ).

To carry off this Action the Courtesan must make a successful Sex Act Pleasing Action on each Admirer present, taking resources for success as usual from each. She will, of course, be Spurned by any Admirer she fails to please. ( If Kinks are in use then any Admirer whose dice shows 1, and does not already have it, gains the Group Sex Kink )

This Action may be performed by more than one Courtesan at once. Any additional Courtesans must be invited as per Admirers, and do not count as participants for Scandal. Each Courtesan may invite her Admirers to the Orgy. There must be at least one more Admirers than Courtesans present.

If this Action is successful any Courtesan taking part in it gains a point for each non-Courtesan participant over one, to be taken in Legend and/or Reputation.

[i.e. Annabelle invites Bernice to help host an orgy, and they both invite 2 admirers. They each Please the Admirers. In addition to the resources from the Pleasing Actions the girls gain 3 points in Legend/Reputation each. If Clarabel spys on them and tells the Town the girls will take 4 points Scandal each for the event plus the points for any scandalous acts that occurred during their orgy]

{ Perhaps you will want to run this like a Gambling intrigue and compare one roll from the Courtesan against one roll by the Landlady modified by each Admirers Pliability.}

Statistic: Prowess.

Legend Justification: Rumours of a debauched party can only enhance your legend. ( although sordid details are another matter…)

Reputation Justification: The Town will be agog at the audacity of such of a thing! There is likely no other topic of conversation.

Wealth Justification: If any sex act has a price, this one likely has..

Influence Justification: Participants will be willing to little favours for you after a night like this, if only to keep you from telling…


Scandal Risk:
Oh..My..God.. So Utterly Scandalous! Even suggesting it is worth a point of Scandal. If it actually occurs it is worth one point per non-Courtesan participant, plus another for any illegal sex act ( i.e. anal sex, woman on woman, S&M….) . This only counts as a breach of a Kept Mistress contract if the Keeper is not a willing participant.

[WB20k] Missions

Quizzer Poster

Some Wargamers I know get really pissed off at any suggestion there may be more to a game than plonking down some minis and shooting the shit out of each other for a couple of hours.

Others simply DEMAND you have a proper scenario with defined objectives and in some cases a fully-fledged back story.

It is… as ever… my duty to balance the demands of a diverse (though not large) fan base. Thus there are several ways to handle Missions in Whore’s Blade 20,000.

Fire Fight: Ignore the idea of objectives and just set up and shoot each other to Hell.

Basic Missions: A randomly selected simple Mission with objectives that affect your Opponent’s Courage Point store.

Black Ops: One Player assembles a Warband as normal whilst the other has a horde of Goons for them to get past in some kind of risky stupid mission. There will be a future Supplement dedicated to this form of play.

Full Scale War:
Combining Goon Squads with heroic Warrior leaders for a full-scale Wargame. Again there will be a Supplemental Expansion of this.

Hopefully this caters to all tastes!

[WB20k] Psychic Powers

Wytch Poster (Censored)

With the exception of the rare “Fuzzies” every human being in the Galaxy has a Psychic Power.

Psychic Powers come in three broad varieties…

Minor Psychic Powers are free but not particularly powerful ranging from the classic fireballs and lightning bolts to more subtle abilities like Compel.

Allegiance Psychic Powers are unique to each Allegiance and are quite potent, hence they cost extra.

The same is true of Occupation Psychic Powers available to those with specific Occupation Features.

The choice is between a risky but useful back up or a potent and destructive ability that will likely determine the strategic worth of the Warrior to her fellows.

[WB20k] Features and Bugs

Nurse Tracey

Features and Bugs are minor special rules that allow further customisation of Warriors to make them individuals rather than random grunts.

They cover many areas of the rules changing how Warriors move and fight as well opening up new creative tactical options.

For those of you coming over from the Roleplaying game these abilities are not as powerful as Path Features but they are infinitely more customisable and characterful.

Each Feature costs 10 points to purchase and each Bug refunds 10.

Warriors have 3 slots of each.

[WB20k] Weapons

Scoundrel Poster (Censored)

Unlike many ridiculous Science Fiction Wargames, Whore’s Blade 20,000 reflects the fact that in the future warfare will be dominated by fire fights.

You can TRY to be an elite mystic space knight but normally that gets you shot to pieces!

Weapons listed (with the exception of those gained by Features) are therefore all shooting Weapons.

As in Courtesans 20,000 they are divided into Standard Issue, Elite and Heavy Categories with prices and restrictions limiting the number of Heavy Weapons in Warbands.

Weapon Attributes are little changed aside from being rationalised into a notational form suitable for a Roster Sheet and Poison is now referred to as Critical as not all weapons capable of such horrific damage are necessarily venoms.

Ranges are deliberately on the short side to keep games mobile and fast paced.

[WB20k] Morale

Wellness Officer Poster (Censored)

Morale is always a tricky one to model in a Wargame.

Moving and shooting can easily be statistically determined but as to how your Warriors feel… God only knows!

The way Morale has been modelled in Whore’s Blade 20,000 is each Warband has a store of Courage points. These points go down after particularly successful Attacks are made against the Warband and Warriors die.

However the points can also be expended voluntarily to reroll a dice through heroic effort.

Morale is thus a balancing act. Do you conserve points from loss or risk them to change the course of fortune? The choice is yours!

[WB20k] Movement

Tina El-Dazio

The Movement Rules of Whore’s Blade 20,000 are based around the simple principle that a Warrior Moving at full combat effectiveness can move her Grit in Paces. This is called a Base Move.

This includes jumping gaps between buildings if the Warrior has the Paces to achieve this.

There are also three other Movement options.


Climbing:
Paces of Base Move can be spend to Climb 1 Level per Pace spent.

Sprinting: Sprinting involves “gambling” for additional Paces in Movement: Higher Grit Warriors have better odds. Sprinting Warriors cannot declare Engagements or attempt to Spot Hidden Warriors.

Hiding: Provided a Warrior is in Base Contact with suitable cover she spend a Pace to duck down out of sight. Remaining hidden until spotted by an enemy or until she makes a Pop Up Attack.

[WB20k] Men’s Liberation Army

MLA Logo

Men have hard time in the Empire. Ever since the Empress was betrayed by a man she’s projected this mistrust onto the entire gender. Thus men are second, if not third class subjects.

Barred from employment, drugged to the eyeballs and with their sex lives reduced to official breeding programs it’s no wonder they rebel.

The rather haphazard pseudo group that supports the restoration of men’s rights is known as the Men’s Liberation Army.

Imagine the anarchy of Anonymous mixed with the passion of the Suffragettes and the ruthlessness of Al Qaeda.

Yes I do realise those adjectives are interchangeable!

Anyway the MLA are a group of fanatics with an obsession with blowing shit up in the name of re-establishing gender equality if not tipping the balance the other way.

MLA Warbands are chaotic and disorganised in all sorts of stupid ways but as they prefer explosives you can guarantee that they will hit hard. Particularly against large numbers!

[WB20k] Cults of the Powers of Darkness

Cult of Darkness Logo

As pathetic as it is when you preach against something, whether it exists or not, hard enough some “radical non-conformist” will start worshiping it.

The Church has been holding up its Powers of Darkness bogeyman for over 10,000 years and during that time it has developed into an underground rival religion.

They profess many Sethian ideas about freedom and scientific supremacy however this is based on the belief that this will give them cool demonic powers rather than an actual belief in science or reason.

Whilst the Church preaches the two factions are in cahoots most Quizzers know that they are highly antagonistic toward each other.

The entire human race may well be capable of great feats of Will through Psychic Powers but fortunately most of the Cultists Attempts to summon demonic doom are complete failures. Nevertheless the Quizzers are pressured by the Empress to waste their time on these suckers!

Cultist Warbands favour cheap and plentiful builds with Standard Issue Weaponry supplemented with the odd Jury Rigged beauty.

Tactics generally involve being numerous and overwhelming smaller, better equipped Warbands.