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Cloud is Dead (Final Fantasy VII CYOA)

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by Random, Dec 12, 2013.

  1. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    I agree. But then what? If these guys don't break after the frags, then we are in trouble. We also have to account for that soldier who is in an undisclosed location.

    Random, was Marcus trained in hand-to-hand fighting with rifles?
     
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  2. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    Yeah.
     
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  3. Dayyālu Arcane

    Dayyālu
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    Location:
    Apparently, Black Mesa
    Eh.

    G) Put down your rifle, seek cover under the desk.


    Let's see what happens.

    I am half-convinced some asshole SOLDIER is toying with us, seeing how many we kill before coming in. It's dumb, but again, ShinRa.
     
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  4. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    E>G>A.

    Dayyalu is right, we were told to put our weapon down, so that might be our Hail Mary. But I'm still more in favor of fighting to our dying breath, since I don't have much confidence in SOLDIER after that conversation.
     
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  5. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    Welcome to Amateur City, Population: These Guys - 10. Soon to be just 0.

    I don't think they're smart enough to deal with someone throwing frags.

    That's why we have a rifle and bullets for it.
     
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  6. Grimgravy Augur Patron

    Grimgravy
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    Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire
    G) Throw smoke and stay under the desk, shoot mooks who get close. > E
     
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  7. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    Free time is a myth that only exists in fairy tales.

    The Hero Returns, Part XV

    Cornered. Nowhere to run. Bullets slamming into the wooden behemoth surrounding you, spraying wood and splinters everywhere. You're just sitting there, waiting to die. You have a brief image of sticking the barrel of your rifle in your mouth and just ending it. It's fleeting, but it was there. It doesn't disturb you too much. You close your mind to such thoughts and focus entirely on the battle. Your hands are a bit shaky, but functional. You just take things one step at a time and let your training take over. [Discipline]

    Cornered, but not sundered. You can't say you've ever been stuck in a situation like this, hopelessly outnumbered, underequipped, and pinned down in an indefensible location. The reaper's coming for your head. So you'll greet him with high explosives.

    You pull the pin on the first frag grenade, crawl out from under the desk, wait for a lull in the hail of gunfire, and pop up just long enough to aim it before you fly it at the nearest cluster of motherfuckers. You don't even take the time to appreciate the geometric, parabolic artistry of your toss, nor to marvel at just how close they've gotten to you. [Athletics] You duck back down before you can get ventilated by hot lead, and feel a bullet whizz past your scalp, chuckling out of surreal amusement. But just as you think you're safe, one blows through the desk and your upper left arm lights up in sudden agony, feeling like someone just stabbed you. You got hit. Red seeps into your nice suit sleeve, ruining it forever as you grit your teeth and grab hold of the damn thing, the muscles in it contracting of their own accord until it's all scrunched up. "Fuck!" you shout, just as your grenade goes off.

    Boom. Yells. Screams. Pain and terror. It occurs to you that they didn't say anything even after you threw the frag. No yells of surprise and panic, no shouts for everyone to get down. You realize they must not have even noticed what you were throwing - they must have assumed it was a rock or a shoe or something, a desperate and clumsy toss. You sympathize with them. You are acutely aware of what it feels like to get hit.

    They're not firing anymore. You try to test your arm, and the damn thing just won't move. Trying to unbend your elbow or operate your fingers at all sends fresh, hellish streaks of pain through your whole limb, so you give up on it. You need to piss. You're half tempted just to let it all out in the pain-tinted animalistic thoughts you're reduced to, but thanks to your training you somehow manage to retain the clarity of mind not to void your bladder. That can wait for when you're safe, or when you're dead. You still have a frag grenade left. You grab it into your good hand, wrapping your teeth around the safety pin, and realizing that you're shaking. You're going into shock, probably. You don't have much time left before you become totally incapacitated as your body shuts itself down. The fighting spirit is leaving you faster than you can try to psyche yourself up. Desperate, you yank the pin out of the grenade and rise just to fling it at the nearest son of a bitch you see. While up there, you see the bloody results of your first grenade. The blood and smoke left behind catches your eye, and in the fog of the pain and fear, you freeze up, your throw gets awkward, and the explosive slips out of your blood-slick fingers, thumping onto the swiss-cheese desk in front of you.

    You don't even have time to curse as you dive back to the ground, landing on your poor left arm through which a fresh jolt of tender fresh excruciation erupts, making you roll on your back and groan as every nerve in you rebels against your brain and you vomit just as the grenade detonates and a huge wave of pressure, heat, and wood fragments rain on you. For a second, you think you must be in Hell. Then your senses clear up, ears ringing, you're heaving breaths through a throat that still burns from your own stomach acid, and you stagger to your knees, crawling as best you can for your rifle -- but just as you get your hand on it, someone bashes your face with the butt of a rifle, and you're laid flat on your back, dimly aware of the ache in your face, the warmth of your own blood leaking from your nostrils. It's nowhere near as bad as what your arm feels like. No, actually, both your arm and your nose are going numb, you realize. A barrel is pointed down at your face. Your vision swims, and you can't quite make out the face of the guy holding the rifle. No, wait, that's because he's wearing a skimask.

    You hear a strange sound, somewhat familiar. It takes you a little while to place it. That's right, it's the sound of materia activating, that noisy little whine that gives away your position if you aren't careful. But when did the terrorists get materia when they can't even afford body armor?

    The guy standing over you suddenly slumps over after a brief, golden blur passes by, and after a few moments you see that his head is just... gone. Blood spurts out from his neck like a fountain, falling on you. There's a bunch of gunfire, but not that you can see, only hear. There's some screams. Some yells. Something like metal smashing through metal, and grinding. The noises of flesh being parted, ripped apart with brute strength.

    Then, all the noises stop. You think you're fading from consciousness or going deaf, but in fact, you figure out that it's just that the battle's over. Someone walks over to you, and you turn your head to see the woman wearing a full suit of ShinRa SOLDIER armor, some sort of advanced NV/IR goggles on her head, even her mouth concealed by a tactical mask. Not a single bit of flesh is exposed. In her right hand is nothing more than a standard ShinRa combat knife, issued to even the lowest of grunts in the Public Safety Department. It's bloody as hell. In her left hand is a glowing green orb from which the light slowly disappears, some sort of spell materia.

    "You're not very good at following instructions, Major," she says in her husky voice, grabbing you by your good arm and pulling you up to your feet. You appreciate the gesture, but fall over the second she lets you go, thudding painfully but thankfully not on your wound this time.

    "Like... Like I'm gonna let them take me hostage," you manage to spit out as she wipes the blood off her knife with a rag, tosses the rag, and puts the knife back in her hip sheath.

    "That is usually how you survive situations like this," she says, sounding more than a little annoyed. "Thanks for making my job harder. Still, on the bright side, the Company's going to love the PR on this one. The hero who stopped AVALANCHE. Twice."

    "They were AVALANCHE?" you groan, almost dreading the thought of more of these damn interviews, asking the most immediate and pressing question on your mind.

    "So they claimed to the police when they gave their demands," the SOLDIER said. "And I'm sure you're smart enough to guess what their demand was."

    Of course you are. Barret Wallace. Their leader.

    "They must've mobilized everything they had to try to get him off the chopping block. Well, considering one off-duty security guard—" she says, putting particular emphasis on those last two words with almost scathing tone, "—managed to steal all their valuable hostages and gun down half of them, they really must be scraping the bottom of the barrel when it comes to manpower."

    She presses a button on the side of her helmet, likely the radio. "Command, studio's clear. Emergency exit is open. Bring a stretcher. Major Westmore has a bullet wound and needs medical attention." Then she waltzes over to the chained up emergency exit, grabbing the chain and ripping it off of the door with nothing more than the brute strength of her hand. She kicks the door wide open, then turns and just walks away. One thing catches her attention, though, the Buster Sword, which she goes to and withdraws from the jammed up spot you left it in. She turns it over in her hands, examining it like it's as light as a pen, then tosses it aside. "Command, proceeding to clear rest of the building." Then she moves on through one of the few open doors.

    Everything from that moment on is so quick. You fade from awareness several times, feeling like every time you blink the stretcher you're being carried on is in a new locale, going down the emergency stairs, in the ambulance, in the hospital. The same goddamn hospital in Shinra HQ that you just got out of. What a pisser. The bullet is pried out of you while you're stuffed to the lungs with painkillers and then you're patched up. As you finally start to feel secure where you are, no longer plagued by the adrenaline of combat and not expecting a terrorist to come marching into your room every time you blink, the allure of the anesthetics becomes stronger and you allow yourself to finally get some badly needed rest, shutting your eyes.

    But before you really drift off, you reflect on the day's events. You feel like something's changed. Something's different about you. You're not quite the man you were before the AVALANCHE attack on HQ, nor are you the man you were before the AVALANCHE attack on the Evening Digest studio. They weren't your first combat engagements, but they're definitely something far more meaningful than light skirmishes with monsters in an armored convoy or beating up would-be pickpockets and shoplifters in the HQ. For the first time in your life, you were on your own. Unequipped. Unprepared. Twice in a row, in fact. You really did not enjoy either event, but... having come out of both incidents in a reasonable state, you think you might have gained something from the experiences. Like you've awakened, become more alive. Or maybe you're just high on sweet, cloying, mind-numbing drugs.

    Marcus has gained a level!
    Choose one Stat to increase:
    A) Strength
    B) Agility
    C) Tenacity
    D) Intelligence

    Choose one Perk:
    E) Touched by the Lifestream (if an enemy attack would kill Marcus, it becomes an automatic miss instead of a hit, but only once per Chapter)
    F) Tough Guy (Exhausted, Starved, Dehydrated, Bloodloss, and all similar status effects have their penalty reduced by 1)
    G) Killer Instinct (Gain a +1 morale bonus to Marcus's next roll after killing a target, but the effect does not stack per kill)
    H) Analytical (Know the actual numerical TNs for various choices before picking them, if any; only factors in known variables and circumstances, not unknown ones)

    Roll Results
    Show Spoiler

    Discipline roll to stay cool under pressure:
    1d20 + Discipline Lvl. 3 + Tenacity 6 - Exhausted = 15 + 6 + 6 - 2 = 25
    TN: 18
    Good Success!

    Marcus acts first!
    Athletics roll to throw the first frag:
    1d20 + Athletics Lvl. 2 + Strength 4 - Exhausted = 12 + 4 + 4 - 2 = 18
    TN: 12
    Good Success!

    Terrorists fire back!
    1d20 + Marksmanship Lvl 1 + Agility 3 + massed fire bonus = 7 + 2 + 3 + 5 = 17
    TN: 19 (Base + Agility + Cover Value - Exhausted)
    Bare Success! Marcus is shot in the arm!

    Grenade detonates!
    1d5 possible kills out of 13 targets, +1 for Good Success on throw = 3 + 1 = 4 kills, 1d5 possible wounded = 2 wounded

    Round Two
    Grenade throw 2
    1d20 + Athletics Lvl. 2 + Agility 7 - Exhausted - Bloodloss = 2 + 4 + 7 - 2 - 4 = 7
    TN: 12
    Bad Failure! Fumble, but able to take cover before detonation!


    Character Sheet
    Show Spoiler

    Name: Marcus "Steelwall" Westford
    Class: Ranger
    Level: 2
    Profession: Major of the Shinra Co. Peacekeeping Corps, Department of Public Safety, Military Police Division
    Age: 23
    Inner Nature: X
    Dominant Inner Nature: None
    Health: Severe
    Status: Exhausted, Bloodloss, Crippled Left Arm

    Characteristics:
    Strength 4 Agility 7
    Tenacity 6 Intelligence 7

    Skills:
    Discipline Lvl. 3
    Marksmanship Lvl. 2, Athletics Lvl. 2, Bluff Lvl. 2
    Hand-to-Hand Lvl. 1, Fieldcraft Lvl. 1, Stealth Lvl. 1, Academics Lvl. 1, Observation Lvl. 1, Electronics Lvl. 1, Computer Use Lvl. 1

    Inventory: Ruined Nice Suit, note from Janice, Tom's business card (bloody)
    Gear:
     
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  8. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Wow, that was lucky. Random, will low stats lock us out of certain perks?
     
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  9. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    Perk selections are based on what perks you already have, and what you've done before gaining the level. If you don't use Strength for example, you won't get any perks related to it. And if you use Strength but fail, you also won't get any perks based on it. I'm not gonna bother to make hard stat gates for perks, but in a general sense, yes, if you want to get a wide variety of perks, you want a balanced stat spread.
     
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  10. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Definitely picking up that strength boost and the lifestream perk. Face it bros, we need a fate point.
    +M

    AE
     
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  11. Kipeci Magister

    Kipeci
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    I agree with Baltika, Marcus seems to have a knack for entering into hairy situations and sooner or later the dice are going to betray us.

    However, looking at recent combat it seems like agility is doing a lot of the heavy lifting for getting out of harm’s way. As much help as that strength point would be in hefting ridiculous metal slabs around, I figure it’s great to make our current advantages even more powerful.

    BE
     
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  12. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Strength impacts all aspects of a soldier's life. I would hate for us to be stuck in a stupid situation just because Marcus' strength is below average. For instance, not being able to carry a .50 Cal up a hill.

    Moreover, I don't want to fall into the min-maxing traps. This CYOA follows the Age of Decadence model: min-maxing will only get us so far.
     
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  13. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    C>B

    F. I figure we're gonna be spending quite some time in a less than satisfactory state, might as well roll with it.
     
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  14. Grimgravy Augur Patron

    Grimgravy
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    Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire
  15. Azira Arcane Patron

    Azira
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    Codex 2012
    B>D
    H>E
     
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  16. oscar Tacticular Staff

    oscar
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    B>C
    E>F
     
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  17. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    pssst
    hey
    been curious for a while but
    what's the actual specific meaning of the > in CYOAs? Is it "first choice > acceptable alternative if first choice can't win vote"?
     
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  18. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Pretty much.
     
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  19. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    Ok thanks, glad to get that cleared up.
     
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  20. Kipeci Magister

    Kipeci
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    Since at least the start of roll tracking in this quest, the biggest all around impact has been through intelligence, not strength. Furthermore, I think that 4 has him above average; the terrorist goons usually have been having stats of 3 or so, and he's proven capable of picking up moving around the ridiculous slab of metal that is the Buster Sword. It seems passable enough for now.

    Here's a list of every stat a roll has relied on since Random began tracking those in Chapter 1: The Hero Returns, Part VII.

    Show Spoiler
    Discipline: Tenacity
    Athletics: Strength
    Examination of the Nurse and her motives: Intelligence

    Charm the nurse to go on a jog with you: Intelligence (Failure)
    To Bat at the Cages: Strength

    Observation to find the relevant information in time: Intelligence (Failure)

    Bluff to lure the terrorist closer: Intelligence
    Hand-to-Hand to steal the gun: Strength
    Marksmanship to kill terrorist: Unclear stat (Auto success due to outclassing foe, probably due to agility as that's used for some later marksmanship rolls)

    Bluff to intimidate terrorists: No stat
    Easy Marksmanship to blow away the terrorists: No stat
    Intelligence check: Passed

    Discipline to calm down John: Intelligence
    Intelligence to improvise blocking the doors: Intelligence

    Marksmanship to take out terrorists in killzone: Agility
    Terrorist Forces fire at Marcus: Agility (Terrorist Failure)

    Discipline to stay cool under pressure: Tenacity
    Athletics to throw the first frag: Strength
    Terrorists fire back!: Agility (Terrorist Success)
    Grenade throw 2: Agility (Failure)

    So that gives us this many rolls/checks for each stat:

    Tenacity: 2
    Strength: 4
    Intelligence: 7 (2 were Failures)
    Agility: 4 (2 were Failure/Terrorist Success)
    Stat unclear/No associated stat: 3

    Intelligence is thus looking like our primary stat at the moment, but it should be noted that Agility has been the most prominent stat when we're in combat for both offense and defense. Strength and Intelligence are important in setting up the situation, but when we cock up and have a hail of bullets coming our way whether or not we cheat death seems to be relying mostly on agility.
     
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  21. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    Yeah those ones where no stat was associated would have had stats added but the exact value was irrelevant to the outcome: Marksmanship to kill terrorist would be Agi, Bluff to intimidate terrorists would have been Intelligence, Easy Marksmanship to blow away the terrorists would've been Agi. Strength as a stat will be used in nearly all athletics, melee combat, and other such rolls. Tenacity would have come up more often if Marcus had been wounded earlier, as it would have been necessary to roll it to accomplish certain otherwise basic tasks. Agility is for ranged combat and determines actual defense TN against enemy attacks as well as who gets to act first in encounters. I think I mentioned this before but 3 is the human average for a given stat and 9 is the peak of human potential in a given stat (Olympic tier). It's possible to go beyond 9 via levelups or things like Mako injections. With Strength 4, Marcus isn't weak compared to the totality of humanity; he meets the bare requirements of ShinRa troops in terms of physical strength, but could easily go much further with his body than he's currently at.
     
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  22. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    TL;DR: we need gains.
     
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  23. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Flopping to A F>E, because


    Random, will the perks affect Marcus' character and the way he perceives the world directly?
     
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  24. Random Arcane Patron

    Random
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    Essentially, yeah. They're not just in-game abilities, they're also going to color Marcus as an individual. This puts B and F in the lead, by the way. Will update tomorrowish.
     
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  25. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    ...any last minute flops for strength?
     
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