Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Spore Week: Psychonauts of the Cosmic Overmind, Addendum

"Chalk it up to forced consciousness expansion."
After contemplating the Psychonauts of the Cosmic Overmind campaign setup for the past couple of months, I have an opportunity to include it as a side quest sort of thing, so here are the rest of the rules.  I should probably blame my distant memories of Chaosium's Dreamlands supplement for this sort of thing.

If the myconid sovereign hits you with enough rapport spores and hallucination spores, you'll eventually start tripping so hard your mind finds itself in the astral plane.  From there, you could end up anywhere in the multiverse.

Game-wise, this is an excuse for the GM to run any adventure they have lying around, whether or not it's connected to the current plot.  (You can even run another system if you want — run Monsterhearts for a session, and let your fantasy adventurers ponder the raw, existential dread of high school.)  I personally recommend something quite different in tone: take your vanilla fantasy to the Hill Cantons, or Wishery, or the Domains of Dread, or Carcosa, or some other distant vista of your choosing.

The multiverse is yours to explore!
Adventures take no time at all: at most, you're sitting in the myconids' meld for eight hours, but you might spend hours, days, weeks, or months of experiential time in the midst of your long, strange trip.

Characters retain their standard equipment.  If they lose or spend something, they have broken it, eaten it, tossed it away, or otherwise ruined it in a moment of psilocybin-wrought psychosis.  (It's up the GM how recoverable a given piece of equipment is.)  If they acquire equipment in the meld, it does not return to the world with them when the trip ends.  However, it does stay consistently in their minds, and journeys with them across their sojourns into the meld.  (Within reason, of course: if you decide you're running Delta Green this week, but last week they found Blackrazor in White Plume Mountain, maybe they only have their standard issue stuff for this foray.  Or maybe you're going totally gonzo, and yes, they do have the fabled Blackrazor.  Your call.)

If they come up with some clever way to recover their dream-equipment, let them have it.  (At high levels, stuff like plane shift becomes an option.  But I have no doubt that some enterprising lower-level party might undertake a quest to find equipment they left in the meld.)

If you die in the meld, you might die in real life.  Give the players a save vs. death, or a Constitution check, or a system shock roll, or a DC 17 Constitution saving throw, or whatever your death-avoidance mechanic is in your home system.  If they fail, they die for real.  (Alternately, you could go all Dreamlands on it and say that character who die have a bad trip and can never rejoin the meld thereafter.  Perhaps they never dream again, either.)

This is your brain on the meld.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Print Friendly