August 31, 2021
Hi there! As promised, I’m releasing an update to APOCALYPSE FRAME after some re-reading, testing, and thinking about the system. In addition to general cleanup, the changes are as follows:
- Attributes for every character are now 3 in one Attribute, 2 in another, and 1 in a third. Between missions, you can swap your 3 for your 2 and your 2 for your 1. See the devlog here for my thoughts on the matter. Suggested Attributes for the 3 Arrow Frames have been altered to account for this.
Integral Systems and Traits #
- L2-BRAWLER’s Kinetic Discharge and H3-ANGLER’s Net Launcher have been made slightly weaker. Kinetic Discharge in particular has had its downside made more apparent. I talked about this change a little here.
- M3-SENTINEL’s Support Drones now takes effect at the end of the turn and affects the Ace as well. This is to enable the player to rely less on other people getting into position to get the effect (and hopefully reduces the need for intensive planning/quarterbacking ).
- Shotgun and Machinegun gained Piercing. This brings them both to the same Harm/Tag parity that everything else is balanced around, gives more access to Piercing (previously only the Gauss Cannon had it) and makes attacking groups of Shielded enemies less tedious.
- Scoped and Sighted tags now only add +1 Harm if enemies aren’t in the other two ranges.
- Aimed, Forceful, and Quick tags no longer exist. See here for more information. They’ve been replaced with 3 different tags (Critical, Distracting, Impulsive).
- Three Backup Armaments have been added: Shiv, Handgun, Revolver. These mostly come into play when the new Frame Damage option on a 4 forces you to replace an Armament with one (because it’s been damaged). In addition to accessing them via Frame Damage, you can also choose to switch to one of these mid-Mission before or after making an Attack action. You can’t switch back until after the Mission, though, so be careful!
Modular Systems #
- Directional Reactor Vents now does extra 1 Harm (not 2) at half or less Vigor (not Tension) and ignores Armor. This separates it more fully from Metal-Piercing Blade and leaves mechanical space for both to compete. Previously, it was almost certainly better than Metal-Piercing Blade, and especially with L2-BRAWLER.
Frame Damage #
- Frame Damage for 1-3 has been changed as described here.
- In addition, Frame Damage on a 4 now disables the Armament and forces a change to a Backup Weapon that matches one of its range tags.
The GM Turn #
- During the Enemy Activation phase on the GM Turn, the first Activation per enemy per turn allows two Moves. This is a middle ground between one and two Activations per Ace (as discussed here) and allows enemies to do things like move into range and shoot in the same GM Turn without providing the potential for 8-10 attacks on a tactically inept party (bear in mind that any given enemy may only attack once per GM Turn).
- Made some enemy Moves explicit to give a GM a ballpark as to what’s appropriate.
- Added a few new enemies: one kind of Wildlife and four kinds of “generic” enemies that could be used in several circumstances.
- Loadouts for several enemies have changed.
- Prime enemies were rebalanced to have lower Vigor/damage. In general they’ve been changed to be less of a special thing for named characters and more of a general “leader” or “boss” style enemy (and guidance for how to use them has changed to match). As for mechanics for serious, named threats, well…stay tuned.
(Originally posted here)