Just in case people are following along sequentially. I’ve decided on a 250 point campaign but completely removed the Booster Extra to stop things from getting ludicrous. It’s a potential issue in a game system that lets you emulate both street level and cosmic level.
Naming the Invaders
Oh my god do I hate naming things. I always look at the name and say “that doesn’t look like a legitimate name” even though it’s no more or less fantastical than names other GMs come up with. Generally though I’ll go to fantasynamegenerators.com and click through until there’s something that sounds right enough that I can play with it. Sometimes it takes a while but this time one immediately jumps out at me – Brovax. It easily lends itself to adding an -ian, like Brovaxian Empire, and the idea of “Bros” being used as a short derogatory term for the enemies amuses the hell out of me.
I think rather than an Empire or anything similar I’m going to refer to them as a Consortium. For them the earth is a resource to be taken and used. Conveniently it’s a resource that comes with its own native workers that can be put to use. Using humanity as slave labour to strip the planet clean for their own uses seems like a good, clean motivation for them. Due to the Black 2 setting there may be some alien dissenters as well as human (or meta-human) collaborators since there are no moral absolutes.
In order to flesh the villains out to some extent I’m going to turn away from Wild Talents and to Stars Without Number, specifically the Dead Names and Lost Races sourcebook. While I may not use what’s generated I’m sure it will give me some ideas. Rather than go through each of the tables I’m just going to post what I ended up with as a combination of rolling on the tables in that book and choosing logical selections.
The Brovax are a roughly insectoid species with three pairs of legs and two pairs of arms that end in sharp talons. Each limb is multi-jointed making them exceptional dexterous. They are slightly larger than humans, roughly 7 feet tall and weighing an average of 280lbs.
The Brovax seem to be suffering from a strange wasting disease, their thin skin is nearly constantly sloughing off and they now wear constructed exoshells to replace what was once a natural carapace. This disease is kept in check by the digestion of medicines made from rare elements which is what drives them from planet to planet, stripping it of the minerals they need to survive.
Culturally the Brovax are tribal, with each tribe being ruled by a chieftain and those chieftains working together to make joint decision that affect everyone. They prize loyalty to the group and despise leaving territory that is still viable for their needs. When they raid a planet they strip it absolutely bare. What they don’t need to survive they use for manufacturing. Due to this loyalty, they live in communal groups and their habitats and ships are designed to remind them of the subterranean tunnels of their home.
The Brovax language is a mixture of sounds best described as “wet” combined with sub-sonic tones. It cannot be spoken or even learned by humans. Conversely they cannot speak human languages nor do they seem to care to. Their attitude towards other species seems to be one of expected subservience and they will kill without hesitation.
Wild Talents Brovax
So time to see what these look like from the mechanics standpoint. So I’m going to build them as an archetype with some inherent powers.
Power Source – Extraterrestrial. That’s super obvious. Any powers would come from their alien nature or technology.
Permission – Inhuman Stats (Coordination, Body). This means that the Brovax are not limited to 5d in those two stats and can buy Hard Dice or Wiggle Dice but that they are not “powers” and thus not subject to effects that manipulate or turn off powers.
Permission – Super-Equipment. This will allow them to have technological devices.
Intrinsic – I’m going to model their wasting disease off of the allergies – basically making it a Common allergy that does Shock damage per round of exposure. I’ll say that exposure would be defined as having their armor breached outside of their habitat.
Intrinsic – Their talons should be functional and dangerous. So I’m going to make it a mandatory power.
Claws – Attack (2), Capacity – Touch, Extra Quality (+2), Penetrating (+2), Deadly (+1). Total Cost 6/12/24.
So those are claws that would do Width+2 in Killing damage and can penetrate up to 1 inch of steel (or Hard Armor 2). Let’s say every Brovax has 3d in that. Not super, super deadly but still something to be aware of as a pair of 10s on the 3 dice will kill most characters flat out. That’s going to be an 18 point Intrinsic though.
So the total cost for the Brovax Archetype is 5 (source), 6 (Inhuman Stats), 2 (Super-Equipment), -4 (wasting disease), +18 Claws = 27. Since the first Source is always free, that makes the cost 22.
By doing this as an archetype it means that I know that I can make a character with stats and skills and then slap on the archetype to make it a Brovax and it also means if someone wants to play a member of that invaders there’s a point cost to keep it aligned with the other characters.
Note – I didn’t include the armor they wear to replace their natural exoskeleton as a Mandatory power because this means it’s not something every one of them has. All Brovax have nasty claws, not all of them wear the armor.