Steam Canyon

Point Based Character Gen

Race, Ethnicity, and Setting

All player characters are human, living in the town of Steam Canyon. You may choose any ethnicity from African, European, Hispanic, Native, or Oriental. Your ethnicity makes no mechanical difference to your character and is there for flavor only. Your character's gender and gender preferences also have no mechanical differences, although we will not be roleplaying any sexual interactions between PCs, NPCs, or other.

The town of Steam Canyon is located in a deep sandstone canyon, at a wide bend with an ancient sandbar on the inner bend. The canyon has a wide river which is fed by glacial mountains far to the north. The immediate area is very hydrothermally active and there are numerous hot springs and geysers in and around the town. The geysers in town have been harnessed through variations of the steam engine to provide mechanical power normally provided by wind and water wheels.

Most of the town is built on the sandbar near the river, with some homes built on and into the sides of the cliffs. Cliff-side homes either have carved steps or take advantage of one of the steam powered lifts that provide access to the top of the canyon. All homes have hot water provided by springs, but only the most affluent homeowners have access to steam power within the house.

There are several cattle and sheep ranches on the western side of town, and a horse ranch to the north. Most homes have personal gardens for veggies and get other commodities from the local mercantile. Mountain goats and wild boar are also somewhat common in the area and are often available for sale by local scouts.

There are three saloons in town, each with rooms for rent in the back and on upper floors. One of the saloons has a large stage which is used for town meetings, holiday parties, and the occasional traveling theater group. The other saloons also have entertainment available to a lesser extent. Each saloon has a small kitchen that can provide evening meals, but alcohol is the primary business.

There are three mines in the canyon. A very large silver mine that was the reason for the founding of the town, a modest sized copper mine with a relatively small amount of iron ore, and a small uranium mine that was recently discovered to the north of town. All of the mines are still actively producing ore in enough quantity and quality that the town is thriving, although nobody is really sure what to do about the uranium.

The Event

When the skies tore open and the mountain was destroyed by lightning, every living person in the canyon was knocked unconscious and enveloped in a paper-like cocoon. A week passed before the first people began emerging, changed by mutations. The uranium mine is now glowing a sickly green color at night.

Only a small percent of the townsfolk survived the transformation, either because their bodies weren't strong enough to handle the physical changes, or their cocoons were mutilated by unknown creatures. Many of the ranch animals were slaughtered by these same creatures; no cows survived, some sheep who had overhanging cliffs to squeeze into survived, and the horse ranch appears to have not yet been attacked. What little was left behind showed very large bite and claw wounds of various kinds, along with a few puncture wounds.

Your characters are among the few survivors, slowly discovering how you were mutated by the event and how your mutations work.


Wealth has been left out of the occupation descriptions, mainly because the town is in survival mode. Commerce has ceased to exist, there's plenty of equipment in town to go around, for the few survivors left. The equipment lists are suggestions and can be modified or ignored completely. If you don't see an occupation you want, let me know and I'll work with you to see what fits in the setting.

Common (unlimited number)


The Cowboy is unskilled labor in its most basic form. They have no permanent residence; a long-term career is not one of their objectives. They can be found wandering the southwestern desert, as well as the northern plains, accepting temporary work in any area when their money has run out. Although the Cowboy appears to have no direction they have largely accomplished their lives wish and that is, no need to answer for anyone's actions other than their own.

Skills - Appraise, Brawl, Dodge, Firearms (Pistol or Rifle or Shotgun), Listen, Melee Weapon (Any), Navigate, Repair (Firearm), Ride (Horse), Spot

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Average clothing, horse & tack, lean to, fire maker and tinder, water canteen.


Till the soil with plows, use draught animals to pull heavy loads. They may practice crop rotation, if they are near Cities they may find it possible to specialize in certain crops or herds. The Great Plains offer superb opportunities for farming and sheep grazing. Sometimes the Farmer and the Rancher may come to some heated arguments about how the land should be used.

Skills - Appraise, Bargain, Brawl, Craft (Any), Dodge, Drive (Wagon), Firearms (Rifle Or Shotgun), Knowledge (Region), Repair (Any), Spot

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Poor clothing, horse or mule & wagon, draught animal, 50 yards rope, farm tools to the value of $20.00.


The Miner has left ordinary civilized society to seek their fortune panning for gold in the clear running streams or underground in cramped dangerous mineshafts. Their knowledge of excavation techniques makes them a useful and fiercely independent member of the society that they have decided to abandon. The Miner is not just looking for Gold; they are also looking for any precious or semiprecious ore that could lead to their Great Find.

Skills - Appraise, Bargain, Climb, Demolition, Drive (Wagon) Or Ride (Horse), First Aid, Navigate, Science (Geology), Spot, Swim

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Poor clothing, mule, fire maker and tinder, digging tools and panning gear, 100 yards rope, water skin, sleep roll.

Uncommon (less than five in town)


The Bartender is not just someone who sells drinks from behind a bar; they are also a mine of information, the closest thing to a Banker in some small Towns. The Bartender acts as liaison officer for prostitutes. They may give a fair price for gold dust, if you treat them well. This person is not going to run out of business easily.

Skills - Appraise, Bargain Or Fast Talk, Brawl, Dodge, Firearms (Shotgun), Gaming, Insight, Knowledge (Region), Listen, Spot.

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Average clothing, portable scales and weights, pocket watch.


A Craftsman offers their skills for barter or sale. Craftsmen specialize in many of the really useful skills that will be needed to tame a wild land. The Blacksmith (with a forge) may extract base metals from rock as well as produce the much needed horseshoe. Carpenters are needed for processing the plentiful lumber and turning it into houses and furniture. Skilled cooks, leatherworkers, even watch makers and stonemasons are all necessary to the growing settler town. The Steamsmiths are responsible for maintaining the town's steam engines.

Skills - Appraise, Art, Bargain, Two Crafts (Any), Drive (Any) or Ride (Horse), Fine Manipulation, Knowledge (Any), Repair, Spot

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Average clothing, horse & wagon, appropriate hand tools, fire maker.


You make your living in retail or wholesale, purchasing resources for less and selling for more. You might work in or own a shop, or you might be mobile: a traveling salesman, a wandering tinker, an adventuresome spice merchant, or an international sales representative.

Skills - Appraise, Bargain, Fast Talk, Knowledge (Accounting), Knowledge (Business), Persuade, Research, Status

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Average clothing, horse & wagon, appropriate hand tools, fire maker.


Performers make their living entertaining the patrons of the saloons. They could be pianists, actors, magicians, or singers.

Skills - Art, Disguise, Drive (Wagon), Etiquette, Fast Talk, Insight, Literacy, Perform (Any), Persuade, Sleight Of Hand

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. stage clothing, average clothing, make up, wigs.


Ranchers live by tending animals, usually whilst mounted. Ranchers usually own livestock and may employ cowboys as ranch hands. Most of a districts livestock will need to be gathered together in a single place periodically throughout the year, or moved from one location to another to be sold. It is the Ranchers skill that directs the herd. Herded stock may include cattle, sheep, or even wild ponies.

Skills - Appraise, Bargain, Brawl, Dodge, Drive (Wagon), Firearms (Pistol Or Rifle), Knowledge (Region), Missile Weapon (Lasso), Ride (Horse), Spot

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Good clothing, horse & tack, fire maker and tinder, knife, 30 yards rope, sleep roll


The Scout is only interested in exploration and experiencing the world around them. Every mile they travel, every mountain they cross, every person they meet expands that experience. They have wanderlust and will only rarely stay in one place for any length of time. The wind always calls them to the next horizon.

Skills - Dodge, Hide, Language (Red Skin), Listen, Missile Weapon (Any Red Skin Missile Weapon), Navigate, Ride (Horse), Spot, Stealth, Track

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Horse (mustang), leather clothing (1 AP), knife, water skin, fire maker and tinder.

Unique (only one in town)


Doctors in the Wild West have an uncanny ability to come across cures that have never been heard of before, which are able to help a wide range of ailments. These 'cures' often resulted in the Doctor being chased from town. Doctors in small towns bind wounds, snip warts, remove bullets, act as barbers and treat diseases. They also treat sick animals.

Skills - Drive (Wagon) Or Ride (Horse), Etiquette, First Aid, Insight, Knowledge (Any), Literacy, Medicine, Research, Science, Status.

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Good clothing, horse & buggy, Doctors bag (lotions, ointments, salves, herbs, soaps, razor, tweezers, bandages etc.), knife.

Sherrif Deputy

A Sheriff Deputy has been appointed by the Sheriff. If trouble comes to town then it is the Sheriff Deputy's job to eject it, in whatever manner they see fit. Other duties include settling squabbles between townsfolk, stopping fights in the saloons and hunting down outlaws.

Skills - Brawl Or Grapple, Dodge, Firearms (Any), Insight, Knowledge (Law), Literacy, Repair (Firearm), Ride (Horse), Spot, Status

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Average clothing, horse & tack, tin star; anything else can be requisitioned from the State if the need is great enough.


The Preacher need not be Christian; there are many other religions to choose from. A Preacher is not necessarily connected to a church. They may associate themselves with a town low on religious principle in the hope of converting it into a more pleasant, peaceable area. The Preacher will expect to suffer for their Faith.

Skills - Etiquette, Insight, Knowledge (History & Philosophy & Religion), Literacy, Perform, Persuade, Research, Status

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. A Piety between 00-50% (see page 30 AH), average clothing, holy book, silver symbol, cassock.

Shaolin Monk

The Shaolin Monk is a member of a mysterious Oriental order, a Master of kung fu. The Shaolin Monk has a great understanding of personal honor, and carries his own good ethics and wisdom with him everywhere.

Skills - Dodge or Parry, Grapple, Insight, Jump, Language (Oriental), Listen, Martial Arts (Kung Fu), Meditation, Stealth

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Simple clothing, straw hat, fire maker and tinder, ritual tattoos or burns on inside forearms.


The Tracker enjoys an understanding with some Natives as well as with town dwellers. The Tracker enjoys the great outdoors and spends much of the time isolated in the wilderness, accepting the harshness of the freezing winters and the power of the summer sun. Nature is their tutor in most things.

Skills - Dodge, Firearms (Rifle), Hide, Listen, Navigate, Ride (Horse), Spot, Stealth, Swim, Track

Equipment - Any weapon your character has more than 40% skill in. Average clothing, horse & tack, leather clothing (1 AP), knife, water skin, 50 yards rope, fire maker and tinder, fur cap (2 AP).



AdaptabilitySurvival in unusual environments.
Animal AffinityHas an affinity with amphibians, birds, fish, invertabrates, mammals, or reptiles.
CamouflageSkin has a concealing texture or color.
ColorationUnusual coloration (minor only).
Dragon BreathCan spit a short stream of Acid, Fire, or Frost at a nearby enemy.
ElasticCan elongate limbs and squeeze your body into small gaps.
HandsHas extra hands or prehensile limb.
HardyResistant to damage.
HealingCan heal by touch.
HybridHas an animalistic trait.
ImitationImitate some natural trait of an animal species.
Keen SenseHas one or more sharp senses.
LuminescenceEmits a light from body.
MagneticCan control magnetic fields centered on your body.
Metabolic ImprovementHas a beneficial but unusual metabolism.
Natural ArmorHas natural armor (scales, horn, hide, etc.).
Natural WeaponHas natural weapon (spine, claw, teeth, etc.)
PheromoneEmits chemicals that can affect others.
RegenerationAble to heal rapidly.
SensitivityHas an unusual affinity for a substance.
Structural ImprovementHas an unusual and beneficial body form.
TelekineticCan move stuff with your mind/
VenomEmits a natural poison.
WingsHas wings and can glide or fly.


This mutation permits your character to instantly adjust to particular extreme conditions, chosen when this mutation is selected. Alternately, your character continually has the ability to survive the specific condition and does not actually adapt to it. Sample types of minor adaptability include immunity to radiation, ability to breathe both air and water, and the ability to digest metal and/or stone, Major adaptability types include immunity to extreme heat, cold, or radiation; or survival in a vacuum. If a resistance roll is required, your character’s relevant characteristic is doubled against the potentially harmful condition.

Animal Affinity

Your character has an affinityamphibians, birds, fish, invertabrates, mammals, or reptiles, chosen when this mutation is selected. You can use this ability on a single specific animal of the chosen type to calm, panic, or tame that animal. An animal that is tamed becomes wild again (if appropriate) when you use this mutation on a different animal, unless the animal has been tamed for more than 24 hours. The major version of this mutation allows you to affect a number of creatures equal to half your POW rounded down.


Your character has an unnatural coloration, exterior form, or an ability to change coloration to help conceal him or her from enemies, or perhaps imitate an object or other type of being. As a minor mutation, this is limited to coloration or some form of unusual skin texture, and as a major mutation it allows for the character to change color and/or skin texture according to his or her background, as if he or she were a chameleon. For example, a hairless mutant with stony appearing skin could curl up and resemble a rock, or a very thin human might have bark-like skin and be able to imitate a tree. The minor version of this mutation provides a +20% bonus to the Hide skill, while the major version confers a +40% bonus.


This is a minor mutation only. Your character’s skin is a different color or colors from your species’ natural color, often strikingly so. It may glisten like gold, be tigerstriped, or be one solid color. If your character’s species is covered with scales, carapace, fur, hair, or some other substance, it is similarly an unusual and unnatural color.

Dragon Breath

Your character can spit a short stream of Acid, Fire, or Frost, choosen when this mutation is selected, at a nearby enemy. You can do 1d6 damage to a single target within one meter of you, a number of times equal to your POW score. The major version of this mutation allows you to use up to 3d6 at one time. All uses return after a night's rest.


You can stretch your limbs up to twice their normal length and squeeze your body into gaps as small as your head. The major version of this mutation allows you to stretch your limbs up to one half your POW score.


This mutation describes any type of manipulative limb, not just hands. With the minor form of this mutation, your character has one or two extremely mobile, ape-like feet, prehensile lips or a snout, or a long and prehensile tail. The major version of this mutation offers two such manipulative limbs (prehensile feet and a tail), or an extra set of such organs (two tails, two extra arms, etc.). The gamemaster should determine if this allows your character additional actions in a combat round, using the guidelines in “Two Weapons” in Chapter Seven: Spot Rules for more information. If using hit locations, your new limb(s) are the equivalent of an arm or leg, as appropriate.


Your character can withstand considerable damage before falling unconscious. As a minor mutation, your character is highly resistant to damage from a particular type of injury, taking only half rolled damage (rounded down). You should work with your gamemaster to determine the type of damage, such as fire, falling, cutting weapons, etc. with the gamemaster’s approval required. As a major mutation, in addition to the resistance to a particular type of damage, your character can be reduced to 0 or negative hit points and will still be able to keep fighting or performing actions unhindered, until he or she reaches a number of negative hit points equal to his or her CON characteristic. At this point, your character will die unless healing is provided in the next five minutes to bring him or her to a positive hit point value.


You can touch a creature and immediately heal 1d3 hit points to the creature's current total, up to their maximum hit points, a number of times equal to one half your POW score rounded down. The major version of this mutation heals 1d3+5 hit points and can be used a number of times equal to your POW score.


Your character is a generic hybrid with the traits of two or more different types of animals. He or she might have lobster-like claws, a tiger head, or anything else imaginable. The degree of the crossing is left to the gamemaster and player’s imagination. If this is a minor mutation, your character has a few defining elements clearly marking him as a hybrid, and if the mutation is a major one, he or she is more animal than human, and may find it impossible to blend in amongst humans. Generally, regardless of the amount of hybridization, characteristics and skills are relatively unaffected, though if your character possesses some animalistic elements that may be used in combat, you should assume that large claws do 1D6 points of damage, a pointed beak or teeth do 1D4 damage. At the gamemaster’s discretion, the major version of this mutation includes a minor version of the Natural Weaponry mutation (below). You can ‘upgrade’ that mutation to a greater mutation at the usual cost.


This mutation allows your character to imitate some natural trait of an animal species. This can potentially be an ability the creature has like web spinning, wall-crawling, leaping, egg laying, amphibiousness, etc. This is usually described as a specialty of the mutation, such as “Imitation (Amphibious)”. As a lesser mutation, your character will have the ability to imitate the trait with a successful Luck roll, or the trait will add +20% as a temporary bonus to a relevant skill (or skills) that would apply. As a greater mutation, the trait is entirely natural and your character is not merely imitating the trait: your character possesses the trait, as well as any biological or anatomical structures required to use it. Any skills receive a temporary bonus of +40%, and the applicable characteristic is based directly off your character’s CON where appropriate.

Keen Sense

With this mutation, one of your character’s primary senses (choose one) is heightened, raising any corresponding skills. This mutation may have a physical aspect, at your discretion, such as enlarged or unusually shaped sensory organs (eyes, ears, nose, etc.). If you are using the optional rules for “Distinctive Features” on pages 34-35, any visible mutation would count. As a minor mutation, the bonus to each skill is +20%, and as a major mutation, the bonus is +40%. See BPR page 107 for details.


Your character can generate a type of light from his or her body. The minor form of this mutation allows your character to faintly glow in the dark, or emit a beam of light from his or her eyes or some other organ. The major version of this mutation allows your character to emit a harsh beam of light, able to temporarily blind an opponent if it is shone into his or her eyes. To do this requires a successful Agility roll, and the target can make a similar roll to avoid the light (or can simply close his or her eyes). The light’s color, intensity, and any ability to control or alter the light are up to you and the gamemaster to determine. It cannot be overly complex, though some mutated animals may project very simple wisps and faint images to entice prey. Anything more sophisticated than a small ball of light should require an Idea roll to manifest and control properly.


Your character can attract or repulse object made of iron. The weight of the object (including non-iron parts attached to the iron) cannot exceed POW/2. The major verion of this mutation allows you to affect objects weighing up to two times your POW.

Metabolic Improvement

This mutation confers upon your character an unusual but advantageous metabolic condition. This mutation should be developed with the gamemaster’s approval. This metabolic change can be represented in a number of ways, from a greatly extended lifespan, unusual sleep habits (needs little sleep), a minimal or unusual appetite, or abnormal growth (perhaps your character is only a few years old, but has grown at an accelerated rate). He or she could perceive the world at a faster rate than a normal person, or be able to shut down bodily functions and go into a comatose state, perhaps like a bear’s ability to hibernate. The minor mutation should give your character some unusual advantage, but not be of considerable significance, while the major version of this mutation is a tremendous asset to your character. Due to the wide range of possibilities, this mutation is best developed between you and the gamemaster.

Natural Armor

Your character has an unnaturally tough hide, scales, shell, carapace, or some other thickened outer skin affording some armor protection. The minor mutation offers 3 points of natural armor protection, while the major version of the mutation is worth 6 points of armor. These are in addition to the protection afforded by any armor worn, though the major mutation requires that custom armor be prepared to accommodate your character’s mutation. The minor version of the mutation can be disguised, while the major version is obvious and cannot be easily concealed. If random armor values are being used, the values are 1D3 for the minor mutation, and 1D3+3 for the major version of the mutation. It is assumed that this natural armor protects against physical (kinetic) attacks, though it may protect against additional forms of damage at the gamemaster’s discretion.


With this mutation, your character produces complex organic pheromones that can affect the emotions or behavior of other beings. These chemicals may have a distinctive odor (such as cinnamon, ammonia, musk, perfume, flowers, kerosene, or some other strong smell) which your character may or may not be able to shut off at will (you pick). Alternately, there may be no odor at all to the chemicals released. The emotion or emotions produced by this mutation might be rage, fear, sorrow, nausea, or lust. As a minor mutation, your character emits special pheromones that can elicit one type of emotional or behavioral response (your choice), with an intensity of 2D6 (rolled each time the mutation is used). The targeted creature or creatures must succeed on a resistance roll of his or her INT vs. the POT of the pheromone or succumb to the behavior it evokes. With this as a major mutation, your character is not limited to a single type of pheromone, and is able to choose which emotion or behavior is to be evoked each full turn (5 minutes). The greater mutation pheromone has an increased potency of 4D6. In either case, the range of this power is your character’s CON in meters, though wind and weather conditions may increase or decrease this range as appropriate.


This mutation allows your character to heal extremely rapidly. The minor mutation heals 1 hit point of damage every minute of game time. The major version of the power heals 1 hit point in the powers phase of each combat round. Regeneration will not bring your character back from the dead, but will heal damage that would normally require hospitalization. Regeneration will also heal the effects of any major wound, though the effects of this healing will only take place once all hit points from the injury have been completely restored. The gamemaster should use discretion in determining if severed body parts can be restored. When this mutation is picked, you should determine one type of injury (fire, acid, drowning, etc.) your character cannot heal from, with the gamemaster’s approval.


Your character is attuned to a certain item or substance which it can detect automatically at a distance. This could be something as varied as gold, oil, water, specific prey animals or plants, gems, or power sources. The substance must be natural to the campaign setting (it can’t be “magic” in a no-magic setting), and it doesn’t work on a specific object or being, just a class of substances or beings. For example, it can’t be “silver coins”, but it could be silver. At the level of a minor mutation, your character can detect these within his or her CON in meters. As a major mutation, he or she can detect the desired substance within his or her CON in miles. If more than one example of the substance or being is within range, your character must make an Idea roll to distinguish aspects such as the intensity of the substance and its relative distance. If looking for a very specific example, the Idea roll becomes Difficult.

Structural Improvement

If your character has this mutation, he or she has an advantageous evolution in his or her skeletal structure. He or she may have an exoskeleton (potentially adding to his or her natural armor), extra legs or heads, larger or smaller body parts, or new parts such as wings, horns, or spines. You should work with your gamemaster to determine the nature of the mutation and what effect the mutation has in game terms. For the minor version of this mutation, roll 2D6 and add those points to any characteristics potentially affected by this mutation, or you can turn those points into armor points or MOV points on a 1 for 1 basis. Only POW cannot be altered by this mutation. Your character must make a successful Disguise roll whenever he or she attempts to hide this mutation from other humans. If the mutation is major, roll 4D6 and distribute the points as you choose (excluding POW, as noted above). However, this mutation is utterly impossible to disguise or hide, and your character may have difficulty purchasing equipment and clothing that he or she can easily use or wear.


To Do


Your character is able to naturally manufacture a type of venom within his or her body. This venom may be injected with sting, bite, spine, or claw, or it may coat your character’s entire body. Alternately, this venom might be a gas your character exudes, projected spittle, or might take effect only if something bites your character. If the venom is projected in some fashion, you must make a successful Throw skill roll to strike the target; if it is dealt hand-to-hand, you should use your character’s Brawl skill. The minor mutation version of this poison has a POT of 2D6 (rolled each time the mutation is used), and the major mutation version has a POT of 4D6. This poison may cause paralysis, sleep, attribute reduction, or blindness, or have another effect (your choice, with the gamemaster’s approval). A resistance roll determines if the poison has any effect. See “Poison” in Chapter Seven: Spot Rules for more information. Whether minor or major, a ranged venom attack has range equal to CON in meters.


With this mutation, your character has functional wings and can fly. These wings can appear however you would like them to appear, batlike, birdlike, insectile, or some other style. The “wings” can even be a gaseous gland within your character, making him bulbous and lighter than air. With the minor mutation, he or she can fly at a rate of equal to his or her full MOV score in meters per combat round, or any speed lower than this, including a hover. With the major mutation, the speed is doubled. Your character’s ability to carry anything else while flying is depending on his or her STR characteristic. This mutation counts as a prerequisite for the Fly skill, giving your character a starting value in the Fly skill of DEX x 2 for the minor mutation, and DEX x 4 for the major mutation.


1-2AllergySkills reduced by contact to an allergen.
3-4AnimalisticHas features of an animal, causing negative reactions from other humanoids.
5-6Metabolic WeaknessHas a disadvantageous and unusual metabolism.
7Pain SensitivityLow resistance to pain.
8-9PhobiaA fear that causes panic and/or freezing.
10-12Reduced SenseImpaired or missing primary sense.
13-15StinkyHas an incredibly foul smell that repels all humanoids with a sense of smell.
16-18Structural WeaknessHas an unusual and disadvantageous body form.
19-20Sunlight SensitiveTakes damage from direct sunlight.



Metabolic Weakness

Pain Sensitivity


Reduced Sense


Structural Weakness

Sunlight Sensitive