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Horses

(by Jeffery Keown)

In Caleon, we ride enormous Titanis-like critters called Wazzan. Known variously as Axebeaks, Phorusrhacos, or Terror Birds, the domesticated Wazzan has long been a companion to the Players of Caleon. Since, as mentioned elsewhen, I can't draw horses.

That aside, I handed out Wazzan “character sheets” to my players, swiftly noticing they were all the same. No personality in their mounts. So… from now on, when someone buys a bird, he'd better inspect it. I think Animal Handling is the correct skill for judging a mount, don't you?

A really good roll should result in a bonus to your bird, whereas if you do not make one (i.e. fail to inspect the poultry in question) or roll poorly, you get a disadvantaged ratite (toxonomist talk for “flightless bird”).

Conversely, if you let your players pay points for a mounts special abilities, why not let them pick 10pts of options below, just to make the cirtter special. Balance that with one of the disads and BAM! unique mount.

It is also possible, in fact quite likely, that some linages are bred for certain traits. Perhaps Ardley's Red Tail Wazzan are all Friendly, and the Lower Thumpington Blue Frills all have Competitive Runner, but suffer from Won't Pull.

Possible Mounts

The Following Animals from HERO Products that make Cool Mounts:

Wyverns (Orcs and Nazgul)

Manticores (for evil Dwarves)

Unicorns (for Virginal Elven Paladins)

Pegasi (Greek Heroes)

Rocs (Rox?) (Entire Adventuring Parties)

Bears (Russian Folk Heroes)

Buffaloes (Old West Badasses)

Camels (Everybody)

Pteranodons (For crossing water)

Sufficiently Large Spiders (for Dark Elves and Goblins)

Hippotomi (for patient folks with large clubs)

Dolphin (for Sea Elves)

Horses (obviously)

Rhinoceri (for Ogres)

Sharks (for Sharthaks)

Orca (for Jason James Ritcher)

I'm sure there's more in MMM… but my fingers are now very tired. Time for the ol' Cut and Paste from Hero Designer!

(Traits adopted from Gamemaster Law, 1995 ICE.)

Positive Mount Traits

Friendly: The mount likes people! All Riding rolls are at +1! 2 Friendly: +1 with Riding, Usable By Rider (+1/4) END Cost: 0

Easy to Ride: The mount is so comfortable being ridden, all Riding rolls are attempted at +2! 5 Easy to Ride: +2 with Riding, Usable By Rider (+1/4) (5 Active Points)END Cost: 0

Easy to Train: Easy-going and eager to please, your Animal Handling rolls are all at +2! 5 Easy to Train: +2 with Animal Handler, Usable By Trainer (+1/4) (5 Active Points) END Cost: 0

Athletic: Nimble and quick, your mount's Dex-based skills are at +2. 12 Athletic: +2 with DEX-Based Skills, Usable By Rider (+1/4) (12 Active Points) END Cost: 0

Competitive Runner: This mount loves to run! Whenever he is running with other animals, he can't help but try and pull ahead. 3 Competitive Runner: Running +2“ (8” total) (4 Active Points); Only When Other Mounts Are Near (-1/2) END Cost: 1

Curious and Clever: Your mount is smarter than normal. 3 Curious and Clever: +3 INT END Cost: 0

Long-Winded: Your mount receives extra END from his high-powered lungs. 5 Long Winded: +10 END END Cost: 0

Hauler: When used as a beast of burden, your mount displays greater carrying capacity. 3 Hauler: +5 STR (5 Active Points); Only for Lifting STR (-1/2) END Cost: 1

Puller: When pulling a cart or wagon, your mount provides greater power than others of his kind. 3 Puller: +5 STR (5 Active Points); Only for Pulling STR (-1/2) END Cost: 1

Disadvantages

Sense of Humor: Strangely, your mount displays a sense of humor. He'll splash you at the watering hole, step aside when you jump from the second floor onto him and generally behave like a jerk. 10 Psychological Limitation: Sense of Humor (Common, Moderate)

Scratcher: This mount scratches himself constantly, rubbing up against poles, trees and castle walls while you try to ride him, despite the fact that your legs are quite in the way. Ouch. 15 Psychological Limitation: Scratcher (Common, Strong)

Saddlewise: This mount knows the saddle, and does not care for it. He'll draw in a great breath and hold it, breathing out after the saddle is “secured.” Try to ride him and you find your self dumped in the road, the saddle having slipped down, loosened by his antics. 20 Psychological Limitation: Saddlewise (Very Common, Strong)

Impatient: This mount won't stand still for long. If left alone too long, he'll meander away, and try to move when you're loading cargo or adjusting his saddle. 25 Psychological Limitation: Impatient (Very Common, Total)

Runner: This mount likes to run. Always. Try Animal Handling to slow him down. 25 Psychological Limitation: Runner (Very Common, Total)

Nervous: This critter has 5 less PRE than animals of his type. He'll be generally frightened of every little noise and cannot be ridden into battle. 20 Physical Limitation: Nervous -5 PRE (All the Time, Greatly Impairing)

Stubborn: All Animal Handling rolls with this ornery beast are at -4. 25 Psychological Limitation: Stubborn (Very Common, Total)

Kicker: Also known as Biter, the mount will kick those behind him, or bite those in front of him. 15 Psychological Limitation: Kicker (Common, Strong)

Sensitive Ears: A horse's ears can be very sensitive. He won't take a bridle, or might attack if you try to put one on him. 20 Physical Limitation: Sensitive Ears (All the Time, Greatly Impairing)

Won't Carry: The mount will not stand for wieght being placed on his back. While he might take a rider, he doesn't like being a beast of burden. 20 Psychological Limitation: Won't Carry (Very Common, Strong)

Won't Pull: Like Won't Carry, above, except the damn animal won't pull carts and wagons. 10 Psychological Limitation: Won't Pull (Uncommon, Strong)

Sickly: Your mount is prone to falling ill. I've used a base of Infrequently, but an especially-disease prone mount might have a greater disadvantage frequency. 5 Physical Limitation: Sickly (Infrequently, Slightly Impairing)

Allergies: You must feed your mount the same expensive food every day. If you do not, he'll grow weak and sickly. 20 Physical Limitation: Allergies (Frequently, Fully Impairing)

Sensitive Feet: This mount's feet are very sensitive. If its a horse, he'll have to be reshod every few days, as he works his shoes off, if a wazzan or non-shod mount, he won't take to his feet being touched, stepped on or made to go over rough terrain. 15 Physical Limitation: Sensitive Feet (Frequently, Greatly Impairing)

Unfriendly: This mount has a surly disposition. He'll bite, peck, breathe flame on and generally be evil to those around him. Animal Handling calms him a bit, so he's not totally useless. 20 Psychological Limitation: Unfriendly (Very Common, Strong)

Hero Designer File

 Horses ()