When all hell breaks loose you want to be the guy with training, guns, and all the right answers. Lets face it through, those special operatives with years of training make up less than a 1% of the population. The world of Glass Shadows needs those special operators, but it also needs the investigators, data analysts, correspondents, and the myriad of other critical roles needed to keep everything moving forward.
There are any number of scenarios where you’re not going to want that Frame Pilot with guns blazing. There are times where stealth, connections, or social skills will be far more important in accomplishing matters than just blowing things up and moving in the troops. If there weren’t, this would be a very different world.
This doesn’t mean that characters that lack combat ability wont ever get caught in a dust up. Good people die every day. However, just because a character lacks traditional combat skills doesn’t mean they are completely out of luck when things go pear shaped. The Open Action System rewards creative play and Boons that allow characters with a variety of skills to make useful and interesting actions in combat.
Included below are five Boons that capitalize on a characters non-combat skills giving them additional options or advantages in a fight.
Combat Analyst (Intelligence)
Requirements: Intelligence 6, Analyze Skill
With this Boon, the Character is able to pick up on patterns within battle and adapt accordingly. The Character may declare dice for Initiative a 6 before rolling.
Activation Time: Free, Cost: 4 Energy per die.
Deceptive Moves (Expression)
Requires Expression 7, Subterfuge Skill
The Character has a talent for misdirection. If you’re not paying attention you’ll miss them.
The Character may use their Subterfuge as a Supporting Skill for Armor Strength. During this time the Character must be able to speak.
The Character may convert this Bonus to Weapon Strength on a single attack. They cannot use this Boon again in the same scene after using Deceptive Moves in this way.
Cost: 5 Energy per Turn
Activation Time 1 Action.
Requires: Dexterity 7, Movement Skill
The Character knows how to move, they may not know how to fight but they know how to move.
The Character may take one Active Defense per turn with no loss of actions for that Turn.
Cost: 10 Energy.
Lucky Shot (Fortune)
Requirements: Fortune 6 (Attribute), Intuition Skill
No one can predict the flow of combat, but sometimes what should be a negligible blow is instead crippling. On the Character’s next attack roll the Character may use their Intuition as a Supporting Skill, they inflict a minimum Damage equal to their Intuition + 1 Wound for every 10 points of their final Attack Value, regardless if the attack would have done damage or not. NOTE: Players should describe how the Lucky Shot inflicts its Damage and Wounds after attacking, usually unrelated to their attack itself.
Activation Time: Free, but may only be used once per session.
Shell Game (Expression)
The Character has a way of making their target’s focus on the wrong thing.
The Character may take an action to make a Fast Talk roll against the Target’s Mental + Concentration. On a successful roll the Target suffers a Penalty equal to the Character’s Fast Talk Skill for the next Turn.
Cost: Standard Action Cost
While each Boon requires a different Skill, both the Boons and the Skills easily fit a Grifter or Con-man build. This is a character that that relies on luck, charm, and deception to get what they want. A full build of our Grifter may also include the Slight of Hand and Perception Skills, both fitting with the overall concept and adding a few new possible cons to their repertoire.
This is only a small cross section of non-combat Boons available to characters. Players shouldn’t be afraid to mix and match combat and non-combat abilities as there is never a perfect build for every job. That’s why there’s the Network.