A PPC role-playing game would be awesome, right? I certainly think so. Back in college, I attempted to create one using the system I was most familiar with: D&D 3.5. This is as far as I got before I realized it really wasn’t going to work out. D&D is far too combat-oriented, whereas a PPC game would have to focus a lot more on character traits with advantages and disadvantages to be fun—you can see how my ideas were already trending that way if you look at the Insanity Feat Tree. I’m leaving this up for posterity, and please use it if you feel so inclined, but I don’t plan to work on this anymore.
Adventures: PPC Agents have PPC missions. While they may feel like adventures, Agents always go on missions to accomplish a definite goal, usually the assassination of a Mary Sue. Individual Agents have their own particular motivations for doing this.
Characteristics: Agents can and often do find themselves in combat situations, but they are at their best when they take opponents by surprise. They are aided by the vast array of equipment at their disposal, but they also tend to be naturally analytical, thoughtful, and somewhat neurotic. All Agents are at least a little bit insane, or they wouldn’t be Agents.
Alignment: PPC Agents can have any alignment, but their desire to preserve the rules of writing and canon means that they tend to be Lawful. Yes, it is possible to be Lawful and a complete nutter.
Religion: Any at all. There are plenty of gods who support the cause.
Background: PPC Agents come from all around the multiverse. They might come from the Real World, from a canon world, from an original story, or from fan fiction. They come willingly, accidentally, and by recruitment. They can be from medieval, modern, or futuristic civilizations. They tend to be young—typical adventuring age—but there are plenty of adult Agents.
Races: Agents can be of any race, though humans and elves from various worlds seem to be the most common.
Other Classes: PPC Agents are inquisitive and often versatile. Since many PPC Agents come from other worlds, many of them have levels in classes other than PPC Agent. They get along well with differently skilled people and benefit greatly from learning from them.
The PPC Agent
|Level||Base Attack Bonus||Fort Save||Ref Save||Will Save||Special|
Game Rule Information
PPC Agents have the following game statistics.
Abilities: Any combination of stats can make a good Agent, but Dex, Int, and Wis are the most important.
Hit Die: d6.
If your Agent has a good reason for having a certain skill, she can have it. Hide (Dex), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), and Spot (Wis) are highly recommended. Medieval Agents also have access to Use Technological Device (Int), just as modern and futuristic Agents have access to Use Magic Device (Cha).
Skill Points at 1st Level: (8 + Int mod) x 4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 8 + Int mod.
The following are class features of the PPC Agent.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Agents are proficient with any simple weapons appropriate to their home culture, plus the longbow and shortbow. PPC Agents can use light armor, but most prefer not to. All other proficiencies are at the discretion of the GM, but we encourage backstories that include training with interesting equipment.
Read Words: At 1st level, all PPC Agents gain the ability to see the Words of the fic they’re in with a Wis check. (NOTE: I thought about making it Gather Information or Concentration, but the one is based on Cha and the other on Con, neither of which really makes sense here.)
Insanity: All Agents are a little bit insane, and so at 1st level all Agents get Insanity as a class feature. An Agent’s Insanity is generally equal to her Agent level + Wis modifier. This number may be used in the place of Will in some circumstances, such as navigating PPC Headquarters. Further, Insanity opens the door to a variety of interesting abilities which the Agent may take as Feats. See Insanity Feat Tree.
Specialize: At 2nd level, the PPC Agent may choose to specialize as an Assassin or an Exorcist (and possibly more to come). Assassins gain the sneak attack ability (+1d6 per every two Agent levels hereafter). Exorcists gain access to Canon Domain Spells, which are Charisma-based.
Creating a Mary Sue
“Mary Sue” is an acquired template that can be applied to any humanoid or monstrous humanoid creature (referred to hereafter as the base creature). A Mary Sue retains all the base creature’s statistics and special abilities except as noted here.
Size and Type: The creature’s type changes to Uncanon (Mary Sue). Do not recalculate base attack bonuses, saves, or skill points. Size is unchanged.
Hit Dice: Same as the base creature.
Speed: Same as the base creature.
Armor Class: Same as the base creature.
Attack: A Mary Sue retains all the attacks of the base creature. If the base creature can use weapons, the Mary Sue retains this ability. A creature with natural weapons retains those natural weapons.
Special Attacks: A Mary Sue retains all the special attacks of the base creature and gains those described below. Saves have a DC of 10 + 1/2 Sue’s HD + Sue’s Cha modifier unless noted otherwise.
Charm Person (Sp): As the spell of the same name.
Sue Eyes (Sp): The Sue’s multi-colored eyes fascinate anyone who sees them as the spell Hypnotic Pattern, except that creatures with any number of Hit Dice may be affected.
Suggestion (Sp): As the spell of the same name.
Special Qualities: A Mary Sue retains all the special qualities of the base creature and gains those described below.
Aura of Smooth (Su): At will, the Mary Sue emits a mind-affecting energy or pheromone that operates as the spell Calm Emotions. The Aura is also responsible for the Sue’s perfect appearance, as it removes any water, dirt, or minor damage from the Sue’s person and clothing as the spell Prestidigitation. The Sue may choose to use either or both facets of this ability at any given time.
Woodland Stride (Ex): The Mary Sue may move through any sort of undergrowth (such as natural thorns, briars, overgrown areas, and similar terrain) at her normal speed and withut taking damage or suffering any other impairment. However, thorns, briers, and overgrown areas that are enchanted or magically manipulated to impede motion still affect them. Also, the Mary Sue may choose to ignore this ability in order to create angst or garner sympathy.
Abilities: Modify from the base creature as follows: +4 Cha, -2 Int, -2 Wis.
Skills: Same as the base creature.
Feats: Same as the base creature.
Environment: Any, provided there is suitable prey in the form of canon characters.
Organization: Solitary, pair, gang (3-5), or troupe (1-2 plus 1-5 Sue Minions). Because of their competitive and possessive nature, Sues are usually solitary. However, they may work together if they have different Lust Objects and they might even agree to share one if they’re into that sort of thing. In a pair, one Sue is usually more dominant than the other with the subordinate Sue taking a more passive or support role in the story. Gangs are rare, but they do happen. In a troupe, the Sue Minions are basically just there to make the Sue(s) look good and have no will of their own.
Challenge Rating: TBD
Treasure: Mary Sues often carry magical items. They aren’t usually concerned with treasure per se, but you never know.
Alignment: Almost always chaotic (any). Some of them might mean well, but that’s no excuse. “Paved with good intentions” and all that.
Advancement: By character class.
Level Adjustment: TBD
The following are Feats available to PPC Agents. (I’d like to have lots of these. Some should have prerequisites for level, stats, etc.)
You are very skilled at recognizing OOC characters and canon violations in your fandom.
Prerequisite: Originated from particular universe, or done extensive research (i.e. watched all episodes and commentary, read all books, etc.)
Benefit: Within your chosen fandom, you gain +1 to all Intelligence checks.
Special: You may gain this feat multiple times. Its effects do not stack (unless in a crossover fic). Each time, it applies to a different fandom. (Note: “Research” involved can cost a lot of time/materials, as well as navigating Headquarters and the Library.)
You know your canon like the back of your hand. You can practically smell uncanon.
Prerequisite: Canon Aficionado, Int 17
Benefit: Within your chosen fandom, you gain +3 to all Intelligence checks.
Special: You may gain this feat multiple times. Its effects do not stack (unless in a crossover fic). Each time, it applies to a different fandom.
Not only do you know your stuff, but you get really upset when people neglect the rules of writing. For you, the pen really is mightier than the sword—just try not to rip too many holes in things until the end of the mission.
Benefit: +2 Dmg v. Sues, -1 Will in poorly-written badfic.
You really like a certain character and you have trouble restraining your enthusiasm when he or she is around.
Benefit: If your L.O. is/was enthralled by a Mary Sue or Sue-wraith, take a +2 to attacks against the Sue for the mission. When your designated lust object is in view, make a Will save at DC (10 + Ins) to keep from doing something stupid.
Special: Lust Object may be taken more than once, but the effects do not stack.
You are irresistibly attracted to shiny objects. You gather, hoard, and probably use them even when you really shouldn’t.
Benefit: +2 bonus on Appraise checks. When you see something shiny, you may make a Will save at DC (10 + Ins) to resist the urge to collect it. If you fail, you must try to acquire the shiny object.
They’re out to get you, man. Yeah... or not. Either way, you pay way too much attention to your surroundings and think everyone is hiding something.
Benefit: +2 Spot and Listen, -2 Sense Motive and Gather Information.
You are extremely devoted to your lust object to the point of reactive homicide against Sues who take them OOC.
Prerequisite: Lust Object
Benefit: Whenever your lust object is taken out of character, you gain +4 to attack and damage rolls against Sues and Sue-wraiths. Any time your lust object is visible you must make a DC (15 + Ins) Will save to prevent you from doing something stupid. If you fail the save, you must make another DC (15 + Ins) Will save to prevent you from doing something REALLY stupid.
Special: You may gain this feat multiple times, each time for a different lust object. However, the DC increases by +5 for each lust object present.
Voice of Reason
You are surprisingly sane for a PPC Agent. Things that drive your peers up the wall don’t bother you as much.
Prerequisite: Wis 14
Benefit: -2 to Insanity.
Available to PPC Agents with the Exorcist specialty.
Granted Power: TBD
Canon Domain Spells
- Protection from Uncanon:
- Magic Circle against Uncanon:
- Canon’s Wrath:
- Dispel Uncanon:
- Hold Uncanon:
- Word of Canon:
- Shield of Canon:
- Summon Canon’s Ally IX:
Available to some Mary Sues.
Granted Power: TBD
Uncanon Domain Spells
- Protection from Canon:
- Desecrate Canon:
- Magic Circle against Canon:
- Uncanon’s Wrath:
- Dispel Canon:
- Hold Canon:
- Word of Uncanon:
- Uncanon Aura:
- Summon Sue Minion IX:
Flowers: Skills include Intimidate, Diplomacy, and Bluff. Other abilities include telepathy, psychic shield type thing, and possibly mind bullets.
Headquarters: There are no maps. Insanity check to navigate, DC 10. Nat. 1 = Escher room.
Hazards of Fanfic:
- Wild Minis - untrained by their OFU, they are angry, vicious little bastards. Preferred alive, but no penalty for killing them in self-defense. To create, scale down appropriate monster when possible (e.g. Balrog, Acromantula).
- Scene Changes - Various types. Unannounced = Fort save at DC 12 to keep from being nauseated for 1d6 minutes. Horizontal Rules, etc. = Spot check to notice (they might look like heat waves), Ref save to open a portal in time to avoid, Fort save as above but with higher DC if encountered.
- Punctuation Downpours - Spot and/or Listen to notice, Ref to avoid getting pummeled.
- Author’s Notes - No save. Agents might see them coming in the Words and portal away. Otherwise, they suffer through them.
Bleeprin: One dose reduces Insanity by 1d8 + 1/Agent level (up to +5). Effect lasts for about two hours and many negate the effects of Scene Changes. If Insanity is reduced to 0, the Agent loses access to her Ins-related Feats until Ins is restored. Bleeprin may not negate high amounts of subsequent Ins damage, but it may be taken as often as needed.