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Abilities (also called Attributes in other systems) are the core stats used by characters in the Mutant Future game. They are based on the Labyrinth Lord rules, which in turn are based on the Basic/Expert Dungeons & Dragons rules, but with one exception: Wisdom was replaced with Willpower. This was based on Mental Strength in Gamma World. (In Gamma World, Strength was called Physical Strength.)

The default Abilities are:

  • Strength (STR) — This measures the raw physical power of a character. Effects hand-to-hand combat, and the ability force open barriers.
  • Dexterity (DEX) — This measures the agility, balance, hand-eye coordination and reflexes of a character. Effects Armor Class, range combat and reaction time.
  • Constitution (CON) — This measures the health and fortitude of a character. Effects Hit Points, and resistance to poison and radiation.
  • Intelligence (INT) — This measures a character's ability to learn, remember and solve problems. Effects languages known and figuring out artifacts.
  • Willpower (WIL) — This measures the mental strength and resolve of a character. Effects mental combat.
  • Charisma (CHA) — This measures the charm, personality and physical appearance of a character. Effects social reaction, and leadership of retainers.

This page is about house rules related to Abilities. This includes altered Ability sets, altered adjustments, roll methods and the like.

To-Hit Adjustment: In the normal rules, Strength effects the to-hit and damage rolls of melee attacks, while Dexterity effects the to-hit roll with ranged attacks. As an alternative, Strength only effects the damage roll of melee attacks, while Dexterity effects the to-hit roll of melee and ranged attacks.

Merged and Divided AbilitiesEdit

Players and Mutant Lords might want to alter the abilities due to play preference. Merging similar abilities could help to make the stats more compact, or to remove redundancies. Dividing abilities into two or more separate abilities could help to make characters more distinguish, or to make an ability less powerful or all-encompassing. Here are some examples. Players/Mutant Lords can add, ignore, mix, match, alter and rename the following freely. (Note: entries after semicolons notes effects with possible house rules.)

Merged Abilities

  • Brawn/Might: A mix of Strength and Constitution.
  • Mind: A mix of Intelligence and Willpower
  • Spirit: A mix of Willpower and Charisma; also effects luck.
  • Lifeforce A mix of Constitution and Willpower

Divided Abilities

  • Strength maybe broken into:
    • Upper-body: — This effects melee to-hit rolls and damage
    • Lower-body: — This effects forcing doors; may also effect encumbrance and movement rates and athletic skills
  • Dexterity maybe broken into:
    • Agility — This effects AC; may also effect dodging rolls and aerobatic skills
    • Coordination — This effects range to-hit rolls; can effect skills based on aim
    • Reflexes — This effects Initiative roll; may also effect Energy Saves or Reflex Saves
  • Constitution maybe broken into:
    • Endurance — This effects character Hit Dice; may also effect rate of fatigue
    • Resistance — This effects Stun, Poison/Death and Radiation Saves; may also effect Fortitude Saves
  • Intelligence maybe broken into:
    • Logic(see bellow)
    • Intuition(see bellow)
    • Perception(see bellow)
  • Willpower maybe broken into:
    • Force — This effects mental attacks; may also effect mental to-hit rolls
    • Will — This effects mental defense; may also effect Willpower Saves
  • Charisma maybe broken into:
    • Personality or Appearance — This effects reaction rolls; may also effect social skills
    • Leadership — This effects moral rolls and number of followers

As an alternative, players my use ability sets:

Duel-Stat (for an overly broad, bare-bones system)

  • Physical: This handles Strength, Dexterity and Constitution.
  • Mental: This handles Intelligence, Willpower and Charisma.

Tri-Stat (as used in Guardians of Order games)

  • Mind: Mostly Intelligence.
  • Body: A mix of Strength Dexterity, Dexterity and Constitution.
  • Spirit: A mix of Willpower and Charisma.

Four-Stat (as seen in a number of "rules-lite" systems, like Barbarians of Lemuria and Mini-Six)

  • Brawn/Might: A mix of Strength and Constitution.
  • Agility: Basically Dexterity
  • Mind/Wit: A mix of Intelligence and Willpower
  • Appeal/Charm: Essentially Charisma

New AbilitiesEdit

Perception (PER) is the measure of a character's self-awareness, alertness, intuition, and insight with regards to the motives of others. PER affect the character's roll when spotting hidden or invisible stalkers, and with the reaction table when figuring-out someone's lies or hidden motives.

Luck (LUK) is an abstract measure of good or bad luck, karma, divine favor, plot armor, etc. Luck bonus effects all save scores (lower if stat is high, or rise it if low) and (if the Mutant Lord deems it) ones Armor Class score.

The Mutant Lord may allow players to "spend" points of Luck on roll bonuses, re-rolls or "advantage" rolls (roll two dice for attack or saving throw and discard the lowest). This could also be used as "plot currency" to shift the events of an adventure to the players favor. For example, a player whose character is locked in a prison cell can spend Luck to make escape easier, but in a way where the player/character still have to put more effort in escaping. That is, a guard may accidentally drop his keys, but it out of reach, or the character finds a loose stone in the wall, but its going to take time to clear it. The cost to change events is up to the ML. Spent Luck is restored by the next game.

This form of "plot currency" is also a good to enforce genre tropes, like how Bond villains like to gloat or leave captives unattended in their elaborate death-traps. Players may even recover spent Luck, mid game, by doing things based on a desired effect that also hinders the character, like how He-Man and Thundarr the Barbarian forgoes killing living enemies with their overly powerful magic swords, instead, punching them out and throwing their bodies at other enemies.

(Perception & Luck by Malcadon)

Logic and Intuition

This effectively replaces Intelligence, and gives two approaches to problem-solving. Most robots and many (early model or inexperienced) basic androids would have high logic and low intuition, to reflect their computerized minds. Intuition can be used in the place of Perception (as above).

Intuition (INU) measures a character's alertness and ability to draw conclusions from what seem to be unrelated facts. Characters with high Intuition scores are more likely to solve problems by having hunches or making guesses than by carefully considering all the evidence. This ability can be used to read people and situations, and thus avoid trickery and misdirection.

Logic (LOG) is a character's ability to solve problems in an orderly, step-by-step way. It is the opposite of Intuition. Characters with high Logic scores make good scientists and computer experts. This ability is ideal for figuring out the workings of new artifacts, as well as to figure out traps and puzzles.

(Logic and Intuition is based on the Star Frontiers attributes of the same names)