Prestige

PRESTIGE

For several different power groups the GM shall keep track of the party’s prestige rating. During the course of the campaign, the party’s Prestige will affect how the different groups interact with them. The prestige rating represents how well-regarded the party is, either as an ally or enemy. If the party thwarts several criminal plots but anger Flint politicians in the process, the syndicate might view them as a significant threat (Prestige 3), even though they’re pariahs with the RHC (Prestige 0).

  • Prestige 0: Viewed with disdain, as buffoons or pariahs. The group will not take the party seriously, which could potentially be useful when tricking enemies.

  • Prestige 1: The party is relatively unknown to the group.
  • Prestige 2: The party has done a few noteworthy things, but most in the group don’t know them or assume they won’t do anything else interesting.
  • Prestige 3: The party has distinguished itself, and most members of the group know about their actions and talents.
  • Prestige 4: The group pays close attention to the party, either viewing them as a powerful ally or a dangerous enemy.
  • Prestige 5: The party is one of the top priorities of the group. A lot of resources are devoted to either helping them out or taking them down.
  • Prestige 6: The party has the ear of the leader of the group (or actually is in charge), or they’re viewed as the face of the enemy.

Using Prestige

You can use your Prestige to call in favors, usually to acquire special gear or to get help from allies. The higher your Prestige, the easier and faster you can get what you want.

Use the following guidelines to determine the Favor Rating of what you want. Then compare that rating to your Prestige to see how fast you can get what you want. You can make a Diplomacy or Intimidate check [DC 12 + (3 × Favor Rating)] to increase the speed of your favor one step (for example, from a week to a day).

If the Favor Rating is… Then your favor gets fulfilled in…
Less than your Prestige As little time as humanly possible.
Equal to your Prestige A few hours.
Your Prestige +1 A day.
Your Prestige +2 A week.
Your Prestige +3 A month.
Your Prestige +4 Never.

Calling in a favor represents the party expending its resources and good will to find people who are both able and willing to help, so there are limits to how often the party can take advantage of the Prestige system. The party as a whole can usually call in one favor per adventure1 from a given allied group. A party with Risur Prestige 2 might call on a soldier for back-up (Rating 1) and get someone to show up in a few minutes. The next adventure they might call for a spellcaster to craft some magic items for them (Rating 2), and he’d show up in a few hours. If they had instead requisitioned a more expensive item (Rating 3) to fight a frost monster, it wouldn’t arrive until the next morning unless the party pulled some strings or yelled a lot.

If the party needs to call in more favors in an adventure, one PC needs to make a Diplomacy or Intimidate check (DC 12 + 3 per level of the favor + 2 per each previous attempted favor that adventure). For instance, if during an adventure the party above also needed a squad of four police to stake out a wharf for a night (Rating 3), they would need to make a check (DC 21) to even get the favor, plus also another check (DC 21) to round up the squad in time for that evening.

If they failed the first check they’d be unable to call in that favor, though they may try asking for something different. If they failed the second check, the squad might be willing, but wouldn’t be able to get their schedules together until the next day.

All the above favors would be based on the party’s Prestige with Risur, and wouldn’t count against the limit if the party wanted to call on favors from the people of Flint. If they wanted some street urchins to tail a suspect for a week (Level 3), or needed a group of technologists to spend a few hours testing the air in various districts for traces of a particular chemical (Level 4), it wouldn’t make the police any less likely to help the party out.

At first, only Risur and Flint (and possibly the Unseen Court, if the group has a Vekesh Mystic), count as allied groups. It’s possible to find other allies or alienate your existing ones, depending on your party’s actions.

The Favor Ratings below are just guidelines. The GM can impose modifiers as he sees fit, or state that certain favors are impossible. For instance, if you call in back-up to a crime scene, and all the officers are killed because you screw up, the Flint police force will be less inclined to send you back-up next time. If you just saved the police chief’s life and need a dozen men to track down the assassin, you’ll have an easier time of that.

Requisitioning Equipment

Between adventures, there’s no need to use the Prestige system. Characters can file the appropriate paperwork and whether it takes a few days or a few weeks, the item they need arrives before the start of the next adventure.

When you want to request something during an adventure, though, start with a base Favor Rating of 1 for minor magic items, 3 for moderate magic items, and 5 for major magic items. Add 1 if the item you’re looking for is higher level than you. Most mundane items like rope and clothes don’t need to be requisitioned, but something weird like a wagon with a cannon hidden inside it might count as an minor magic item.

Remember that the favor only represents making the item available; you still have to pay for it.

Help in a Hurry

As a default, favors can get people to help you for up to half an hour. If you want someone to help you for a few hours, increase the level by 1. If the favor requires working for a day or more, increase the level by 2; and if a week or more, by 3.

Prestige with Flint can get you help from the common citizens, criminals, and corrupt police or politicians. Here are some samples of help:

  • Favor 0. Urchins to watch a street for you. A secretary to look through documents or handle your paperwork. A carriage-driver to provide you discreet passage around a district.

  • Favor 1. A ferry-man to give you discreet passage around the city. A craftsman to make a custom non-magic item for you. A local bureaucrat to bend the rules for your sake. A journalist to run a story. A docker poet to spread a flattering tale about the party. A thief to pick a pocket for you (or similar use of a skill, with a +3 modifier).
  • Favor 2. A docker to create a distraction that will probably get him beaten up or arrested. A scholar to examine and explain the nature of a monstrous corpse (or similar use of a skill, with a +7 modifier).
  • Favor 3. A group of dockers to start a small riot. A group of technologists to find the fatal flaw in an enemy device’s blueprints (or similar use of a skill, with a +12 modifier).
  • Favor 4. A district-wide call for people to look for and report a wanted man. A gang of thieves to sneak into the Drakran consulate and steal a magic item. An academy to scour its library for clues to an ancient riddle (or similar use of a skill, with a +17 modifier).
  • Favor 5. A city-wide alert to perform wards against an approaching curse. A small fleet of ships in port to blockade a hostile vessel.
  • Favor 6. A call for all citizens to take arms against a threat.

Prestige with Risur can get you help from Risur’s government, the RHC, and the local police. For example:

  • Favor 1. One police officer to provide back-up (a level 1 Adept or Warrior). Get a search warrant in a hurry.

  • Favor 2. One allied soldier to fight alongside you . A squad of four police officers to provide
    back-up.
  • Favor 3. Four soldiers or twelve police officers. A level 3 spell caster (the party still pays for the spell component costs if any).
  • Favor 4. Twelve soldiers or fifty officers. A level 5 spell caster.
  • Favor 5. A company of fifty soldiers. A district worth of police officers. A level 8 spellcaster.
  • Favor 6. A battalion of soldiers (of course, getting an army for just half an hour isn’t usually that useful). The entire Flint police force. Principal Minister Harkover Lee, who is a level 13 spellcaster.

1 This mechanic differs from and supersedes the one presented in the ZEITGEIST Player’s Guide.

Prestige

Zeitgeist Jim_Mount