posted by Red_Mage Original SA post

Otherverse America

Let me start this off by saying this is the reason the OGL is the worst damn thing. Not because it was a license that gave away a lot of hard work. Not because it encouraged regression in the RPG community and fragmented the player base. Not even because it made everyone with a pdf printer and their dog into a "Third Party Publisher."


The reason the OGL is the worst damn thing is this right here. Otherverse America: An RPG setting that's many sins against humanity include, but are not limited to:

1. Offering full compatibility with Black Tokyo

2. Turning the abortion debate into a circus show

3. Unleashing art that most kindergarten teachers would reject into print

4. and of course being full of horrible stupid mechanics

So lets dive right in, after all when

is one of the best pieces of art in your fucking book, you know you are in for quality.

The book opens up with some shitty art and a few quotes. I am going to paste one of those quotes here because quite honestly this is about the level the fluff writing for this game is at all around:

“The Second American Civil War began just after 10 am CST on January 22, 2061. A historic, highly controversial abortion clinic on Ogalada Souix reservation land was wiped off the map, and it’s RAINBOW Liberty defenders were slaughtered by a post-human terrorist codenamed Life Tank.” -wikipedia.mesh, circa 2107

If you haven't figured out from that quote, Otherverse America is published by the some company (and believe the same outher, its actually kind of hard to pin down) that published Black Tokyo (which this thread has covered) and Blood and Choice (which I will review if I can find a way to do so without giving the person who wrote any money). Otherverse America is a d20 modern game setting where the US has splintered into 2 de facto nations, one pro choice, and one pro life. Also everyone is an idiot caricature of an extremist and as such you feel like you are living in a Jack Chick tract.

This is the first sin that Otherverse America commits, its non crunch is just fucking horrible. Like I can forgive bad game design, I can forgive bad art, I can even forgive bad game design and bad art, but fluff is not that fucking hard, and Otherverse America manages to fuck it up right away. There are really two ways to do fluff, the White Wolf way and the Wizards of the Coast way. In the White Wolf way you have massive intro stories to chapters, you have quotes about how skills are applied and running vignettes throughout your product. It makes for a more exciting read on one hand, but it makes things harder to find on the other and demands more from your writers. The WotC way is diffferent. You organize by crunchy things and then you accompany certain crunchy things with a little fluff. You keep the two very obviously seperate though, making sure that things like statblocks are easy to pick out. Otherverse America literally tries to do both, but does so horribly sprinkling crunch all around the awful fluff, making it impossible to follow either.

Chapter the first - Sexually Transmitted Future

The first chapter opens with a long description of a wiccan midwife using tentacles to probe and help deliver a baby while a coven cheers it on. I guess paganism has become a major religion at some point because they wont stop fucking talking about it. Anyhow you are reading along and its pretty goddamn creepy and stupid and then they give you a timeline. But not really. You get a "starting occupation" out of fucking nowhere, then a writeup on what appears to be a race (the Panacean human, humans bred with special herpes so they never catch stds) anyhow according to the tiny almost timeline they came along in 2010 by genetically modifying babies in the womb, and they were such hot shit that by 2020 most of the worlds military was decanting (which I guess is birthing test tube babies they dont really explain shit) super soldiers.

Super soldiers are now known as powereds, and they are well, a basic class that is all over the place. d20 modern divided up basic classes by primary stat, a really fucking stupid decision, but nowhere near as stupid as what Otherverse does. Otherverse' basic classes appear to be like D&D 3.x classes where they range from "oh that is an archetype" to "we just kind of threw everything else in this class, good luck with that". I'll post the list of talent trees that they move down to get their class features and let you figure out what kind of class this is.

Beginning Talents: A first level Powered Hero can choose from: Honey Trap I, Flyer I, Peak Human I, Reflex I, Regenerator I, Shooter-Type I, Stealth-Type I, Tracer I, Warbody I

Yep. Anyhow as soon as the class' writeup ends, out of fucking nowhere there is a list of genetic modifications. I guess the author put it there because all powered humans automatically get some of them, but like it is a pretty abrupt transition, and crunch into other crunch with almost no divider. It is at this point that I discover there aren't really any chapters other than one in my pdf. So I will split things here because genetic modifications needs its own post, it is the most WTF thing, I'll also cover gene feats in it. And we will go from there.


posted by Red_Mage Original SA post

Lemon Curdistan posted:

Tell me that's not what I think it is.

It is exactly what you think it is:

Honey Trap Talent Tree (short)
Honey Trap Powered Heroes are designed for seduction and infiltration, not front line combat ability. These attractive Powered Heroes are trained in espionage, psychology and manipulation, and their bodies are genetically hard-wired to use sex as a weapon.

Honey Trap I: The Powered Hero’s body secretes a natural hormone with mild euphoric and disassociate properties. A touch, kiss or caress from the Powered Hero can leave targets vulnerable to the Powered influence. If the Powered Hero can make skin-to-skin contact with a sentient humanoid target, the Powered Hero receives a +4 enhancement bonus on CHA-based skill checks (except for Intimidate) made against that target within the next minute.
Prerequistes: CHA keyed Ability Push only

Honey Trap II: The bonus provided by the Powered Hero’s Honey Trap I talent remains in effect for one hour after the contact. If the Powerered Hero touches the target again while the initial bonus is active, the extra dose of psychotropic chemicals increases the bonus to +8 for the duration of the effect.
Prerequistes: Honey Trap I

mini update - How people are born
Other Wombs
Future humanity is not born the same way modern day humans are. A variety of advanced reproductive techniques ensure that the origin of a futuristic PC can be unique and interesting even before their conception. The new reproductive technology described here has produced a handful of intriguing new variant human species.

Birthbreed - Lol you have babies faster and easier

Genetic Randomization - Your parents literally are rolling dice to determine your looks and abilities and shit

Exo-Womb - You were born from a robot womb and as such are better at technology and also cold and self reliant. I don't get it either.

Hive-Love - Every guy you fuck contributes some genetic material to your kid. I have no fucking idea how this works. Like at all. I am pretty sure the author knows nothing about reproduction

Homogenesis - Lol gay butt babies.

Marybirth - Woman only birth, popular among the all christian pro lifers and not among the hyperfeminist lesbi-pagans because ?