Power Sources

In End of the Line, you may play a great variety of heroes, villains, renegades and champions. No matter their reasons for travelling to the End, however, each one of them is far above the average mortal person. How they have achieved this varies; one may have practiced for years in a remote temple to develop prodigious talent, while another simply jumps into the steam-driven tank she built last night. A third wields arcane power to twist the air and lend her words supernatural force, while a fourth was born out of the very concept of beauty, and so long as he has followers his every action is flawless grace.

Whether your character developed these powers through their life or were created inherently special, they fall into the categories below. Humans and monsters, automata and elder things all may use this system. The important things to take note of are the restrictions on what your power can do, they way in which you gain power, and the ways people can take it from you. One other limitation on everyone is that mind control and mind reading are not possible in this system.

There are four routes to power your character can choose from. If you have an idea which you feel doesn't quite fit into any, send the GM team an email and we'll talk about it. The four routes are as follows:


See also: Vetinari from the Discworld series, Ozymandias from Watchmen, Conan the Barbarian, Sir Humphrey from Yes Minister, Sherlock Holmes

If your power comes from talent, you have trained yourself to a peak of mortal potential. Through rigorous practice, you are able to match gods and mages one-on-one in any of your chosen fields. You may not have access to the more exotic things others may be able to do, nor be able to reshape entire districts at the wave of a hand, but on the other hand you're tricky to bring down; nothing save direct confrontation can reduce your might.

  • You can choose four skills (two of which are key skills) at game start rather than three.
  • They rise in power by training and using their specialised skills.
  • They fall in power through personal injury and sickness.


See also: Sauron, Gandalf, Dr Strange, Edward Elric from Full Metal Alchemist.

If your power comes from magic, you have the ability to comprehend and manipulate the pattern of the world, twisting it and transforming it according to your will. A magician needs more than just willpower, however; to work magic, proper rituals and components are required to guide the pattern into the desired form. To this end, most powerful magicians jealously hoard great libraries full of treatises to draw power from and magical artefacts to study.

Magic does have a curious quirk; once a particular spell is pulled together from a dozen treatises, fuelled by power drawn from an old artefact and successfully cast, the mage finds it very difficult to work that magic again. The effect is most pronounced with very powerful spells, and can lead to a cycle of hunting for books in order to get the power to cast a spell to find more books, and so on.

  • Magical characters are encouraged to specialise in Research.
  • They rise in power by adding more artefacts and grimoires to their collection.
  • They fall in power through injury, theft from their library, and casting powerful spells.
  • Magic allows you to perform large-scale alterations to the structure of the world and its inhabitants.
  • Magic cannot transmute one material into another.


See also: The Great God Om from Discworld, Thor, Tinkerbell

If you are one of the city's gods, you are a living representation of the divine. So long as you have sufficient followers providing you worship, your every act will be transcendental and perfect, but your foes will be aware that without your flock you are nothing. Gods alone have the power of creation, able to make things out of nothing and bring new things to the End. Most gods theme their actions - they embody a perview or niche which helps keep an uneasy peace between the many Gods fighting for a limited number of worshipers. They can create things out of their perview but it is more likely to cause ire amongst their fellow gods.

  • Divine characters are encouraged to specialise in Rhetoric.
  • They rise in power by converting more followers to their worship.
  • They fall in power through loss of devotees, whether through others slaying them or drawing too heavily upon their worship.
  • Gods can work miracles of creation, bringing new things into the city.


See also: Batman, Agatha Heterodyne from Girl Genius, Robocop, Dr Frankenstein, Dr Jekyll

As you walk through the city you will find fine examples of mundane craft; paddle-boats on the canals, towering abandoned cathedrals held up with buttresses, crossbows in the hands of street gangs. These are like the scrawlings of the a child, however, compared to the works of Inspired Technology. The influx of inventors able to craft gadgetry that worked miracles through steam and brass effectively stalled technological progress in the city; people were either able to comprehend how to build Inspired Tech, and set to work transforming their lives with it, or were unable to grasp the Principles and had to live with the gadgetry passed down from above.

Technologists are renowned for their ever-expanding workshops, in which they constantly slave to craft new works; as they develop new theories and gather more efficient and exotic tools, the complexity of the things they craft rapidly increases, and the gift of understanding the Principles is not required to use their creations. Every guild worth its salt has a technologist highly prised in their hierarchy, but they need to constantly be on watch for attempts to sabotage their workshops.

  • Technological characters are encouraged to specialise in Creation.
  • They rise in power by enhancing their laboratory through the acquisition of new equipment and the research of new practices.
  • They fall in power through injury and sabotage of their workshop.
  • Technology allows you to make fantastic devices that can used by you or given to others.


Power Source Recommended Skill How do you raise it? How do you lower it? What it does:
Divinity Rhetoric Worship Lose worshippers. Create things from nowhere.
Magic Research Have a library of artifacts/delicious books Steal their precious/cast a spell Transform and transmute things.
Tech Construction Get new tools and components. Sabotage Your tech things are cool, and can be given away.
Talent Any Training or use your specialist skill. Injury/illness. No-one can take it from you.

Power Levels

Even among the powerful individuals of the City, there are definite differences in capability to be seen. By purposefully gathering more resources, followers or experience they can gain the potential to alter the world in sweeping ways; by being undermined through the works of others they can be weakened to the point of death. This game abstracts this to five different levels of power your character may be at, that will be known by you and those who keep an eye on you. The following table summarises what your capabilities may be at each level of ability.

At Ascendant level you are capable of doing an act of incredible power that cannot be easily countered. However doing this act will drain your power and you will be reduced to Normal power levels afterwards. It is very difficult to maintain Ascendant levels of power, and you need to use this act within two turns of achieving that level. If you don't, you will drop back down to Empowered.

With one action… Critical Weakened Normal Empowered Ascendant
Who could I stand up to? Your minions can’t kill you, but pretty much everyone else can. A street gang is a problem. Another PC and their guys is a problem. You could stand up to a small faction. Turn aside an army
What could I find out? Find some relevant facts Find an answer to a mundane problem. Find an answer to an unnatural problem. Solve one of the ancient mysteries. Complete and thorough understanding of a subject. Any subject
How many lives can I change? Yourself, or someone else. Small Group Building Block District
power_sources.txt · Last modified: 2011/10/07 15:36 by jamesi
Except where otherwise noted, content on this wiki is licensed under the following license:CC Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported