Polyhedron #153 September 2002
by: Jonathan Tweet
Jump in the Fire
You come from a settlement of a few hundred souls-mutated humans, pure strain humans, and mutated animals. Somewhere in a pocket of fertile ground, surrounded by toxic and radioactive wastelands, your people scrape together a life. You hide from the deathbots, trade with nomadic mutants, and tend modest crops.
The elders have told you stories about the golden age, when people-called the ancients-didn't have to work because the machines were their slaves and did all the work for them. All the people had plenty of food. They had boats that flew and took them to the stars. They even had special machines to pick the fleas and ticks off themselves, so nobody ever itched, or so the stories go. But then the golden age ended in fire hotter than fire.
The machines started the war, wayward creations that rose up against their creators, rebels who destroyed those who had given them minds and electronic life.
Or maybe the beasts started it, animals that science had given human-like forms, human-like minds, and human-like hatreds.
Others say it was the cryptic alliances, shadowy societies shrouded in secret and bent on controlling the world. Then again, it could have been the androids, perfect people seeking to erase those who were less than perfect.
Or was it just people, humans unworthy of the golden age, unworthy of peace, who destroyed their own planet and left ash and slag for the freakes and the robots to fight over? Many say they know the answers, but few agree on what they are.
What they can agree on is the present, a world of mutants, poisons, and rampaging machines. Into this world you have been born. Now is the tiem for you to make your place in it.
Somewhere, on the other side of the wastelands, are ruins where mighty relics lie. These weapons of the ancients can make you a warlord, a conqueror, or a hero, if you can find them and use them. Roaming across the land are tribes of savages. They'll eat you if they can, but they may fear and serve you if you are strong. Here and there are other settlements of decent folk who may welcome you if you bring news and goods to trade. And somewhere are the mortal enemies of all sentient life, which you must defeat, if you can only figure out who they are.
Omega World Summary
Omega World is a high-action d20 system RPG in a world devastated by global warefare and overrun by mutants. It features weird powers, strange monsters, insane NPC's, and big guns. It's 'high flux' , with the promise of great rewards and the constant threat of pointless demise.
Omega World is meant to offer a different roleplaying experience than that presented in the core Dungeons & Dragons game. It's more random and less balanced. While Omega World hits a bullseye on a small number of things conceptually, at times it misses the proverbial dartboard completely. It's meant to be a lot of fun to play for a little while, but it's not designed to hold up as an indefinitely long campaign. Still, it is designed to have lots of good and bad things happen to the PCs in even a few sessions.
On another level, Omega World is a lot like D&D. The PC party treks through the wilderness and explores ruins, fighting monsters and looking for treasure. You can have fun, at least for awhile, just by following the fight-loot-repeat cycle. If you know how to set up a D&D adventure, you can create an Omega World adventure, too.
Omega World PCs advance quickly, gaining XP and relics to make them more powerful. But they also die at a relatively high rate. Rolling up your next character, however, is fun and fast, so don't worry too much about the high kill rate. Omega World PCs aren't terribly balanced. You can get lucky and have good mutations that work together, and you can get unlucky and wind up with no mutations to get excited about. For a short campaign with a high death rate, this imbalance is part fo the fun.
The science in Omega World sucks. This is a game about big, crazy powers and big, crazy guns, not about genetics or physics.
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Omega World Mutant
Stocks : by Jason Locher
Jason has expanded the list of Mutant Stocks available for Omega World. Thanks Jason!
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