Monday, July 08, 2024

Samson & Starblaster

For part 2 of my Longshot City review, I am going to walk through character creation in the hope of showing off the versatility of the game's random character creation process. Let's take things one step at a time, by the book.

1. Roll Stats.

Roll 1d3+3 for skill, 2d6+12 for stamina, and 1d6+6 for luck.

Right off the bat, I've hit a snag. While this is classically old-school. I don't like random generation that deals with quantity during character creation. It's not fair to players, and it's been replaced in most systems by a point buy or standard array. Fortunately, Longshot City is a fairly simple system to house-rule and I feel like I can do it here without damaging the integrity of the game. 

So, I'm on step one, and I'm already introducing a House Rule. It's pretty straight forward, and I would do something similar for any game that uses random generation for a measure of quantity during character creation.

House Rule #1 (and only?) Static Values During Character Creation

In character creation any requirement to roll dice to find a value measuring quantity will be replaced by a static value as follows: 1d3 = 2, 1d6 = 4, 2d6 = 8. (That should cover it.)

This means that my character will have a Skill of 5, a Stamina of 20, and a Luck of 10.

For those people who like keeping everything random, I will say that these values are pretty tight and that for this kind of thing, I think that Longshot City represents a better example of random quantity generation than I have seen in most other games.

2. Determine Archetype.

Roll d66 and look up the indicated archetype (pg 2–pg 21). Copy any possessions, advanced skills, and special abilities for that archetype onto your character sheet. You may decide which die is which after rolling (instead of before).

This step contains the bulk of character creation. The "deciding which die is which" refers to the d66 roll. It means that when I roll the 2 six-sided dice, I can decide which die to assign to the tens value and which to assign to the ones value. So, unless I roll doubles, I will get to make a choice of two Archetypes. 

Okay, here's another house rule … 

House Rule #2 Rolling Doubles when determining Archetype

If you roll doubles on your d66 roll to determine your Archetype, you still get two choices. You can choose the doubles that you rolled or the doubles of the next higher value. If you roll double 6's, you may choose from double 6's or double 1's.

There. Now, no matter what I roll, I get 2 choices.

So, I rolled and I got a 33. LOL … My house rule gets a chance to work! I will choose between Archetypes 33 and 44.

33. Monster Hunter

Your faith shall be your shield and the predators of mankind your prey.

44. Only Friend

You have a best friend who the world at large cannot understand and accept. You keep each other safe.

So … Buffy Summers or Johnny Sokko?

I am totally going with Johnny Sokko! There's a lot to unpack here. I will share the page from the book.


Origin: Any (refers to Friend's Origin) – okay, the next step in character creation is Origin. This will have me rolling for any possible origin. (Some Archetypes have suggested Origins.) But, this is about the "friend." The friend is the superhero.

Your Friend's Advanced Skills

4 Athletics

4 Power – Enhanced Senses

4 Power – Superstrength


Friend Summoning Device (wrist radio, magic whistle, etc.)

Oblivious Parents

(LOL … let me just pause here and say how hilarious it is that my "Oblivious Parents" are one of my possessions!)


You are a child with a powerful and unquestionably loyal friend. Set your Skill and Stamina to their Minimums. Roll as normal for your friend.

Okay so the Skill of 5, and Stamina of 20 that I generated above are for the friend. My Skill will be the minimum of 4, and my Stamina will be the minimum of 14. My Luck of 5 remains the same.

Roll on the Friends Table to determine who your friend is. (I rolled a 5.)

Luck Dragon!

Okay, less Johnny Sokko and more Atreyu/Bastion – still super cool.

Replace Athletics with 4 Fly (okay)

Gain +1d3 Luck.

Cool, using my static value house rule 1d3 = 2. So my Luck increases from 5 to 7!

That's Step 2 of Character Creation done.

3. Determine Origin.

Roll d66 and find the corresponding origin (pg 22–pg 29). Write it down, along with your wealth rating and any related possessions, advanced skills or special abilities.

For Origin, I rolled a 43.

43 is the Origin: Basement Inventor, which does not sound right for a Luck Dragon.

Flipping that around to 34 we get: Raised in the Wild. That's Perfect!!

Skills: +4 Bushcraft,

-2 Etiquette–All.

Wealth: Struggling (-3).

All of this lines up perfectly with the character that is forming in my mind.

4. Personalize Your Character.

Keeping your archetype and origin in mind, come up with a gimmick and pick a name. Codenames and secret identities are fun, but not required. Decide on any flavor options with the GM (e.g., a signature weapon or energy type). There are no exhaustive lists to pick from for these options.

Hmm … I'd have liked a little more guidance here, but it's cool. I have a good start. So far I don't have any way to fight bad guys with this character. 

The dragon won't be using weapons. It's a little unclear if the beastly attacks combine with the super strength, and just exactly where my dragon should fall on that chart. 

One of the other "friends" (one of the ones that I didn't roll)  specifically lists gigantic beastly damage as a boon, but that's the only boon that particular creature grants. I was thinking that my dragon would be really big, but I don't want to take away anything from that other friend option by assuming I would get that too because I'm a dragon. 

I'm going to avoid this problem by just recording unarmed attacks and multiplying in for the Superstrength. This seems a bit weak for a dragon, but he's a luck dragon, not a fighting dragon.

5. Record Baseline Possessions.

Every character starts with a storage system (e.g., a backpack, a utility belt, or lots of pockets), a costume, a set of civilian clothes, a multitool, and a burner smartphone or some other communication device.

I'm a kid. I won't have a lot of stuff, but I'll write down what makes sense.


That's all there is to it.

Character creation in Longshot City is a breeze and there are a lot of different characters that you can end up with. I like the clean, easy look of the resolution system. I think this one might be finding its way to my table soon.

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