Sunday, October 23, 2016

The radio was shouting at you, pleading with you, and seducing you (Pathfinder)

 
Madness can be found in more than the broadcasts of Radio Idols. Art By: Alfred Kubin

Pictures Mangled by Me: Any picture with this in its caption means it is a collage I made using 19th and early 20th century illustrations. All these illustrations are public domain, meaning I didn't rob anyone by using these pictures for my own gains.

It begins, always, with the setting of a strange device among a crowd. A flick of a switch, a turn of a dial, a retreat of a smiling faceless stranger, then the beginning. The crowd surges, hands now claws, teeth tearing flesh, people now animals.

These horrific receivers cast into crowds the voice of a little girl counting while accompanied by sounds that pull at the deepest parts of the mind. It unlocks something in people, beneath the animal, a thing that usually reserved for serial killers and spree murderers.

The purpose of these exercises in murderous rage? Answer: Why not?

This is what the broadcast sounds like: Youtube Link

Tune in madness, its melodies are far superior to sanity. Pictures Mangled By: Me

City Works Agency Public Service Announcement

Radio Idols and YOU
Radio Idols are a danger that many citizens face on their way about the city. If you prepare for these hateful artifacts, you too can avoid the dangers they present.

REMEMBER! A prepared citizen is a safe citizen! A safe citizen is a GOOD citizen! You want to be a GOOD citizen, don't you?

If you hear something, say something: Report any instances of a young girl counting accompanied by strange sounds to your local constabulary.

Discretion is the better part of valor: If you see or hear a large group trying to kill one another, DON'T attempt to provide assistance or see what the commotion in. Immediately flee the scene and report it to the nearest constable.

Better to be alone than have company: If you suddenly experience any or all of these symptoms, immediately find a place to be alone until they pass. Once gone, report the experience to your nearest constable. These symptoms include, but are not limited to:

Urges to harm yourself.
Urges to harm a loved one.
Urges to consume your own flesh.
Urges to consume the flesh of a loved one.
Urges to harm a nearby stranger.
Urges to consume the flesh of a nearby stranger.
Urges to question the authority of the City Works Agency.

Follow all these recommendations and you too can be a GOOD CITIZEN.

Mirth is madness. Pictures Mangled By: Me
To understand this next part, you may wish to check out my previous post: Here
 
Inter-Agency Memorandum #236 – 17 – 8G
Sender: City Works Contractor – Forensic Science #1786 - Q
Receiver: [REDACTED]

As per Agency Policy #5,013 – 81 [The Treatment and Disposal of Liquidated Agency Contractors]: Dravok, Olivia was removed from [REDACTED] Asylum. All witnesses have been paid a silencing fee [Level: S-13] as well as having been made aware of the city's right to liquidate said persons in the event they proliferate any information concerning Dravok, Olivia.

At 03:16:17, Dravok, Olivia was to be autopsied as per previously noted Agency Policy. City Works Contractor – Forensic Science #2099 – Z found that Dravok, Olivia was completely missing from her storage drawer save for the following: Facial Epidermis and Dermis, Left and Right Supercilium (Eyebrows), Left and Right Cilium (Eyelashes), Left and Right Oculus, and the Totality of Nasal Cartilage.

It should be noted that her Labia Oris (Lips) were not among the remains found in the storage drawer.

Sanctus, I am sorry, my friend. While Delemonde is a complete dullard, he doesn't slack in his duties. He told me that he maintained his post outside the body-locker for the three hours her body was in it, no individual was allowed in before the autopsy. I believe him, as I said, he's an idiot, but a trustworthy one. Olivia Dravok is a Smiler now... - Archibald

Author's Note: I've designed the Radio Idols to straddle the gaps between autonomous construct, trap, and environment hazard. The rules for something like this are few and far between, so I had to make them up as I went along. If there are rules that actually cover these kinds of things, let me know. 

Mechanisms of madness. Pictures Mangled By: Me

Pathfinder / DnD 3.X
CR 3
800 XP
N Tiny construct
Initiative: +0;
Senses: Blindsight 100 ft.; Perception –5

DEFENSE
AC: 15, touch 12, flat-footed 15 (+3 Natural, +2 size)
HP: 18 (3d10)
Fort +1, Ref +0, Will -4
Defensive Abilities -
Hardness 10 and Construct Immunities

OFFENSE
Speed: 0 ft. (Cannot move on its own)
Special Attacks -
Break Knowledge: The Radio Idol can emit a field that temporarily hinders the class knowledge of every individual within 30 feet of it that is capable of hearing. Those within range and capable of hearing must make a Will save (DC 13). On a failed save: Non-Spellcasters have their To-Hit penalized by1D4 points, Spellcasters are considered 1D4 levels lower when figuring maximum spell levels and the number of times they are capable of casting a spell. The effects from this ability are not cumulative and last for 10 minutes.

Rending Static: Every sentient creature within a 30 foot cone capable of hearing takes 3D6 sonic damage. A successful Will save (DC 13) reduces the damage by ½.

STATISTICS
Str --, Dex --, Con --, Int --, Wis 1, Cha 1
Base Atk +2; CMB --; CMD – (Treat as an inanimate object)
SQ: Made of Metal 10 Hardness

Destructive Transmission: Every sentient being within 100 feet capable of hearing the transmission must make a Will save (DC 13) each round they are within range. Those that fail their save will do one of 3 things for the duration of the round:

Behavior 1D3
1: Attack themselves with the nearest weapon at hand. For standard citizens the damage is usually 1D3 unless they find an actual weapon.
2: Attack the nearest person with the nearest weapon at hand. For standard citizens the damage is usually 1D3 unless they find an actual weapon.
3: Scream.

For those who attack a loved one, when they come to their senses the next round, they become horrified at their own actions. Their next save roll is at a -1 penalty from their mind beginning to unravel from the guilt and horror of their own actions. These penalties are cumulative and last for 10 minutes.

This ability is always active, unless the Radio Idol “decides” to turn it off for the purposes of creating greater havoc later. While not truly sentient, it was crafted in a way that allows it to be adaptive in its behaviors.
ECOLOGY
Environment: Any
Organization: solitary, pair, or Hi-Fi (3-8)
Treasure: Concept-Fission Battery

A broken Concept-Fission Battery. Pictures Mangled By: Me

Concept-Fission Battery: These devices are powered by batteries that generate energy through the gradual destruction of a particular concept. Each battery is imbued with a particular concept, with no two batteries ever sharing the same concept. As the concept is broken down it becomes harder and harder for people of the world to understand, with it becoming completely incomprehensible when the battery is finally drained.

The more minor/inconsequential/bizarre the concept is, the smaller the battery. If one were to make a Concept-Fission Battery out of the concept of happiness or love, it would be incredibly powerful, and would ruin the world when it was finally drained.

The batteries in Radio Idols involve rather inconsequential concepts, meaning the vast majority of the world will not miss them when they become incomprehensible. A character may remove and break the battery near a magical item to recharge it, restoring 1D20+30 charges.

Other things might be possible with these batteries, but what exactly is up to the GM.