Monday, October 29, 2018


You know Rifts?
art by jez gordon
Originally: dope setting of post-apocalyptic intergenre chaos, incomprehensible rules. Now: same dope setting but kinda not evolved much, rules by noted sexual harasser?

So we need better rules.

This is Rifts for high-trust RPG environments like FLAILSNAILS, home games etc. Play with a GM you like.


When in doubt, resolve things as your D&D of choice.


3d6 6 times.
Assign them to stats. What stats? ANY STATS YOU WANT TO INVENT
But if you invent a stat the GM thinks is stupid then you lose the stat and the number--no replacement.

So: Strength, Psi power, Wizardry? Fine. You put a 17 in "Winning"? Meh sorry, you lost that stat.

If it turns out you need a stat for something and don't have it? You suck at that. You have a -3 modifier to it.

Instead of hit points:

Hits come off a random stat.  Two stats at zero and you're unconscious.  Three and you pick up a terrible wound.  Four zeros you're dead.

(This rule is Jeff's idea.)


You get 10 skills, they are each linked to a stat and work like that stat + your Level. Right now that's +1.

What skills? ANY SKILL YOU WANT. This is a good opportunity to world-build--if you get "Technomancy" congratulations you just put technomancy in the setting.
But, like stats, if you invent a stupid skill the GM doesn't like--in the bin. No replacement.


Items: you get 2d6 items, you must be able to carry them and find a picture of them in a Rifts book. They cannot be a unique artifact. Once rolled, you will lose d6 random ones.

No repeats.


You get d4 Special things. Mutations, innate powers, spells, claws, vehicles whatever it is that makes your kind of race/class interesting.
Again: if you invent a stupid one, the GM can veto it.


Whatever you like. If it's stupid, the GM is allowed to reskin you into a pre-existing Rifts base class (psi-stalker, cyberknight, etc) of their choosing.


Here's the first ever character for Trash Rifts, made by Jeff Gameblog:

Skizzo McGirk, drifter Stats Dumb Luck 16 Charm 13 Ingenuity 13 Deftness 13 Brute Force 11 Common Sense 9
Skills Drive Wicked Cool Land Vehicle (Deftness) Jury-Rig Stolen Equipment (Ingenuity) Punch Goon (Brute Force) Avoid Automatic Gunfire (Deftness) Lay it on Thick with the Ladies (Charm) Survive on a Scavengers Diet (Brute Force) Make Promises You Can Actually Keep (Common Sense) (I may veto this one) Recruit Banditos for Daring Raid (Charm) Turn Death into a Fighting Chance For Survival (Dumb Luck) Sneak like a Fucking Ninja (Deftness) Specials Flunked out of Skull Boy officer school but still knows a lot of their protocols and procedure Used to run a bloodmobile on the Mexican border - friendly with several draculas Never met a drug he didn’t like Parselmouth Equipment Vibro-Claws (if you think I’m going to pass on a small chance to be Megadamage Wolverine, you are crazy)

And one by Geist.

Giles De Rais MK 2
Summoner Low Cunning: 10 Willpower: 8 Social Competence: 6 Violence: 10 Self Esteem: 6 Luck: 12 Summon (Luck) Compel Obedience (Low Cunning) Barter (Social Competence) Argue (Self Esteem) Dodge (Luck) Avoid Consequences (Luck) Lie (Willpower) Smash Someone in the Teeth (Violence) Know About Demons (Low Cunning) Communicate with Ghosts (Willpower/Social Competence) Items: Summoning Gear Skull Bedecked Body Armor SMG Megadamage Samurai Sword Demon summoning tome Splurgoth Staff
Special: Immediate Comprehension of Written Word Psionic Manta Ray Mount
art by shawn cheng

And one by me:

Slith —serpent mutant Stats Agility 15 Cleverness 12 Investment in this situation 8 Reassuringness 7 Lifting thingss 7 Noticing stuff 6 Skills Clossssse combat 16 Sneaking 16 Fixing things 13 Tending woundsss 13 Hunting beastss 16 Pilot things 13 Sabotagery 13 Grappling 8 Seek Bargains 8 Scavenging 7 Equipment Pair of vibro katanas Specials Chameleon Skin Regeneration Congealing spit (medical) Grappling bite

Rift on.


Anonymous said...

Hitpoints: Roll d6 - youget that stat in hitpoints. Every level roll d6 again, and get a random stat in hp. If this is too high for your taste, divide by 2.

Matt P said...

This is the second reference you've made on your blog to some sort of sexual misconduct with the SW folks - any background links and/or details on that for those of us out of the loop?

Matt P said...

(after passing my Google check) Ah ok, you're talking about Sean Patrick Fannon, not Hensley/Black/etc. Got it.

Didn't PegInc fire him from being the Rifts brand manager after all of that?

Jeff Rients said...

I just realized that the hit point idea was inspired by original Traveller, which used a similar system.

PaMar said...

I was just there to write this, yes :)

PaMar said...

"If it turns out you need a stat for something and don't have it? You suck at that. You have a -3 modifier to it."

This is a bit unclear to me. First of all I decide my own skills, so I doubt I would create o e based on a stat I haven't.
Even if this is needed by a skill I haven't (say "Play Sabacc - based on Luck") and I don't have Luck as a Stat what do I get? A raw D20-3?

Zak Sabbath said...


Obviously you won't make a skill based on a stat you lack but many things you attempt may not be based on a skill. If you don't have luck and don't have a gambling stat then, yeah, d20-3.

Zak Sabbath said...


the expression "glass houses"--that is "people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw rocks" is about how someone who has a particular fault shouldn't criticize others for that fault.

So it's inappropriate to use it: I criticized someone for something they did wrong that I myself did not do.

So: I erased your inaccurate comment.