Lancer - Portly Pilots Homeforge

Recently I have gotten in the the Tabletop RPG Lancer, a sci-fi game that blends together narrative roleplaying with turn-based mech combat. Normally making a fat homebrew for such a game would be difficult at best and impossible at worst, but a few quirks about Lancer made it not only possible, but with plenty of pre-made integration.

  • 1: Player characters are separate units from their mechs
  • 2: Certain units like pilots can have the Biological tag, signaling they are an organic being.
  • 3: There are already lots of mechs at different sizes in addition to having ways to increase the mech’s size and cockpit.

This initially started off as a small project to try getting some friends into the game, but eventually things spiraled and I ended up making a surprisingly long guidebook on. Currently I have had no major playtesting to work with although I was able to get some lovely feedback from the folks here and also got several artist’s permissions to feature their artwork in the guidebook. For now the guide is considered ‘finished’, although additional refinements, changes, and additions are still in the works. I hope that you all enjoy this system and have fun with your butterball pilots.

Current Version:
PortlyPilotsHomeforge_Draft5a.pdf (2.5 MB)

Past Versions:
PortlyPilotsHomeforge_Draft4.pdf (2.1 MB) [Has more content than versions 1-3, but changing the cover images reduced the overall file size]

PortlyPilotsHomeforge_Draft1.pdf (2.6 MB)

PortlyPilotsHomeforge_Draft2a.pdf (2.6 MB)

PortlyPilotsHomeforge_Draft3.pdf (2.7 MB)

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This looks excellent, and I definitely have some ideas to retrofit my homebrew manufacturing company and licenses and some other homebrew work I’ve done on this to fit this core system. There are a few design notes/clarifications I had in mind after reading it though:

is fattening presence meant to clear itself after it emits that burst? It should probably say so, because otherwise things like radiative missiles or the radiative hardsuit just keep going until cleared with a stabilize, which is a lot of potential out of a thing that doesn’t cost much.

There’s a slight bit of clunkiness with the Roomey(should be spelled roomy) cockpit talent of the Lard Wall tree. The way it reads means they’ll be making engineering checks -every turn- so long as they’re oversize, which means it will at max buy them a handful of turns and won’t last for very long until they just get unlucky and roll low. I might recommend the edit ‘on a success, you stay inside your mech for the remainder of the scene or until your size changes, at which point you may need to roll again.’

Caloric Silo refers to the effect it puts out as Nutritional Smog rather than Nutritious Smoke.

The Hijack Controls effect on the Jester’s Pie is -very- strong, especially with no limitations on things like biological targets. I get it’s a piece of exotic gear, but especially since a player investing in engineering could add extra charges to it, it might be worth putting some rails on that one or they’ll just start taking over boss monsters and decimating their enemies.

These aside, this looks amazing and I can’t wait to play around with it and see if I can build on it at all with some homeforging of my own.

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Glad you are liking it and thank you kindly for the feedback! I expected there to be some issues or faults at first so all the feedback I can get is welcome. Plus, again, I haven’t really had much if any playtime with this system aside from hypothesized playtime.

The lack of clarity around the Fattening Presence is something I need to work on so I appreciate that.

Now that I think about it, the Roomy Cockpit change would make it feel better.

Caloric Silo issue was an oversight I will work on.

For the Jester’s Pie, I may need to reign in its strength considerably since it was one of my more prototype builds. Certainly needs some more fine tuning.

Heads up, I decided to release a small update for the rulebook. This one does not change a whole lot or add a whole bunch of new features, just acts as a quality of life improvement overall.

  • Personal Changes
    • Added a section on the New Mech Equipment - Overview explaining what exotic equipment is for new players or GMs
    • Added ‘Assimilation’ Code Injection and Caloric Field Resonator Exotic Equipment
    • Addressed small grammatical issues, typos, and other minute problems throughout
    • Renamed ‘Action System Name’ to Oversized Sound Generators
  • Changes from Storymaker’s suggestion
    • Clarified that FATTENING PRESENCE lasts until the end of the afflicted character’s next turn
    • Improved Roomy Cockpit
    • Fixed an misinputted word in the Caloric Silo object entry
    • Significantly nerfed the power of the “Jester’s Pie” Remote EW Harpoon

After one of my friends expressed concerns about Size 1/2 Lancer mechs (e.g., Goblin, Dusk Wing, Caliban, and Atlas) becoming practically useless with this homebrew, I decided to put some more work into making them more viable and giving two mechs a lore-appropriate frame trait. In addition, I also put some work in to provide GMs and players more options along with other kink content of the group’s choosing.

Patch Notes for Draft 3

  • Added new and changed existing mech Frame Traits
    • New: “Self-Calibrating Exoskeleton” to all player mechs that start at Size 1/2
    • New: “Comfortable Cockpit” to Metalmark and both Swallowtail variants
      • Adjusted Lard Wall Rank 1 to work with this new trait
    • Changed: Caliban’s “Wrecking Ball” and Atlas’s “Giant Killer”
  • Added a section for GMs titled “The Blob Behind the Curtain”
    • 11 New Mission Hooks
    • Multiple Optional Statuses, Equipment, and other goodies involving other kinks such as blueberry/fruit, lactation, and pregnancy (again, these are all optional)
  • Made Starvation Syringe a Limited 3 pilot gear
  • Moderately reworked Hacker Rank 2’s “Jam Cockpit” Invade Option

Cool to see more work being done on this! Though, there is a few questions I have on the “Fruity Body” status. For one, while it’s listed as a pilot status that can be cleared by taking the STABILIZE action. However, on page 74 of the rulebook it’s stated that

“Pilots can take the following actions, using the same rules
as mechs: BOOST, HIDE, SEARCH, ACTIVATE, SKILL CHECK,
DISENGAGE, PREPARE, MOUNT. Pilots can OVERWATCH, and
use the FIGHT action (below) when they do so.
Pilots can also take three special actions: FIGHT,
JOCKEY and RELOAD.”

Notably missing the STABILIZE action, which means pilots on foot, or in downtime have zero ways of actually stabilize. Which is an even bigger issue if a pilot ends up too big to even get into their mech and therefore effectively stuck unless a GM does something or a specific pilot gear is used.

Also for excessive production the overnutrition if blocked seems like it can get out of hand very quickly, especially in combination from fruity body. With every round being considered 6 seconds, just one stack would translate to gaining enough nutrition to go up a size every minute. And if you get fruity body and start at say, size 2, by the time you hit size 4 you’d be getting 8 nutrition per 6 seconds, or more then one size increase every 3 rounds.

Perhaps fruity body could be adjusted so that if a pilot hits size 4, then, they gain excessive production for some time, and excessive production itself could either scale slower in nutrition output or have some cap to stop one instance of fruity body from spiking a character’s weight in the long term. As well as perhaps add in a special action to attempt to “juice” the character that the person themselves or someone else assisting can do rather then relying on STABILIZE which is impossible for a pilot to do themselves.

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The mention of Stabilizing is intended to be use if you are inside of a mech, though I do need to specify that in hindsight.

I could perhaps throw in an ‘juice’ full action to clear an instance of Fruity Body without equipment that can be done both by the person or by an adjacent character.

As for what counts as having “production blocked”, in hindsight I should put more of an explanation as to what counts as blocking production. And yeah, perhaps I could make the fruity body production something that occurs after hitting size 4. Thank you so much for the feedback!

Hoh boy this update was dozy to work on but provides a new mountain of both narrative and gameplay content. For now this is going to serve as the ““Final”” update as I have been running low on ideas for what to add and I also would like to wait before updating it any further. I have been pumping out updates for this at a very rapid pace and I would prefer to get more feedback on it before I push out any further updates. I may end up coming back to this and doing small fixes, but this may end up being the last major update for the mod. With that out of the way, onto the aforementioned mountain of content.

DRAFT 4 Patch Notes:

  • Merged the “A Bigger World” Section into “The Blob Behind the Curtain” for clarity
  • Introduced in the Adiposa Industries Manufacturer
    • Established a full page dedicated to their lore
    • Incorporated the previously unaffiliated general and exotic mech equipment into being part of Adiposa Industries, along with adjusting some of the descriptions
    • Added 5 Core Bonuses (work like GMS Core Bonuses where you do not need to invest 3 License Ranks into a manufacturer to get a Core Bonus from them, but you need 3 License Levels per Core Bonus)
  • Added in some much-needed artwork
    • Title Cover: “Muffin Chick” by Amber Calliope + Thunderkid92
    • Section 1 Cover: “Avalanche Warning” by TheBreadGuardian
    • Section 2 Cover: “Cyberpump 2077 Ibs” by BlueBoiNezha
    • Section 3 Cover: “Ballast System” by Zaphod
    • Section 4 Cover: “Zero G Testing” by batspid2
  • Threw in some miscellaneous content throughout
    • “Widened Waistband” Pilot Trait
    • “NUTRI-gel” use option for Refined Gel
    • “Narrative Flavoring” section for more narrative and roleplay content
      • New Pilot Quirks
      • New Iterative Worlds, Natural Features, and Anthropocentric Features
    • Automatic Juicer and Fructose Cure in the Optional Content
    • ‘Lingering Fruitiness’ optional Pilot Status
    • ‘Slime Fission’ and ‘Fruity Composition’ optional Slime Mass trait
    • “Explosive Growth” optional Gourmand system
    • “Experimental Weapon BFG-0X” Exotic Equipment
    • “Immobilizer Tank” Support NPC
  • Changed some existing items, options
    • “Bouncy Beauty” Clothing makes it so that you cannot gain Overnutrition from EXCESSIVE PRODUCTION being blocked unless you want.
    • Brought the instances of EXCESSIVE PRODUCTION that Distilled Juices brings down from 10 to 4, but specified they do not go away from time progression.
    • Dietary Injection’s “Cured Fruitiness” option has been renamed to “Cured Liquids”, and now clears up all instances of both FRUITY BODY and EXCESSIVE PRODUCTION
    • Increased the difficulty that the “Butterfingers” Cyberwarfare Package can inflict on a weapon from 1 Difficulty to 2 Difficulty.
    • Changed “Milky Signal” so that any instances of EXCESSIVE PRODUCTION it causes cannot be cleared until the end of the scene.
    • “Belly Beam” Plasma Beam Projector now only deals 1 Self Heat
    • Removed NPCs losing 1 Agility from being fattened.
    • “Mass Seeking Targeting” now gives weapons the Seeking tag, but they can only target enemies with Portly Pilot statuses
    • Reduced the Slime Mass’s Hull Skill, removed the Accuracy tag from Bountiful Feast and Unending Feast, and nerfed its HP at tiers 2 and 3
    • Brought down the Accuracy on Radiative Missiles from +2 to +2
  • Implemented changes from Actual_Milk’s criticisms
    • Added the “Juicing” Full Action which can be used by or on someone experiencing FRUITY to clear an instance of the effect. Dedicated equipment to remove it is still better, but now there is an option if you lack such things
    • Adjusted FRUITY BODY to give 2 instances of EXCESSIVE PRODUCTION only once the individual reaches Size 4, rather than gaining an instance of it for every size increase before reaching Size 4.
    • Specified what counts as having a “blocked chest” for the EXCESSIVE PRODUCTION effect
  • Fixing various descriptions, typos, and other minor issues throughout.

So remember what I said about the previous update being the last one? Well…I ended up discovering a major flaw while coming up with new items. I sincerely apologize for not realizing it earlier and I feel like a dunce for not realizing the problem for this long. As an apology for removing the ability for pilots to never become immobile so long as they are in a hardsuit, I give to you a lot more content to enjoy:

DRAFT 5a Patch Notes:

  • Addressed A Major Oversight
    • Something I had not accounted for on the pilot side is that hardsuits will completely override certain pilot stats (Evasion, E-Def, Armor, and Speed)
    • This meant that so long as you were wearing a Hardsuit, it would be impossible for you to become immobile
    • The new change makes it so that the overridden stats can instead take the form of modifiers applied on top of the worn Hardsuit’s stats
    • (May end up making a hardsuit that prevents Immobility at a heavy cost, but not entirely sure)
  • Added various goodies
    • “Fuji” - Adiposa Industries Mech Frame
    • Love Handle Battle Rifle - Heavy Riffle
    • Suit Tearer Gelatinous Blast Emitter - Auxiliary CQB
    • Pressurized Meal Tank - Limited System
    • Multi-Pair Limb Neural Framework - Exotic System
    • Nexus (Sumo) - Exotic Main Nexus
    • Sweet Revenge - Exotic System
    • Waddling Pilot and Dietary Greywash - Optional Immobilizer Tank Systems
    • Berry Laced Code - Optional Core Bonus
    • ‘Mama Bear’ Combat Module - Optional Core Bonus
    • Milk-o-nami Pressurized Fluid Cutter - Optional Superheavy Launcher
    • Motherly Handoff Drone - Optional Drone/Turret System
    • Runaway Production - Optional Full Tech System
  • Changes to existing content
    • Changed ‘Caloric Field Resonator’ to be a market system but it now costs 2 SP
    • Made the Experimental Weapon BFG-0X have an effect on miss
    • Made the Optional Content into a separate section titled “Second Size Servings”
      • Cover artwork is “Juiced” by Zaphod
    • Made any additional instances of FRUITY BODY result in additional size and production.
    • Made the Size 3 limit on LINGERING FRUITINESS also apply to any FRUIT BODY instances and LINGERING FRUITNESS gives your pilot +4 HP due to their altered body
  • Clarifications and Fixes
    • Explicitly stated that the Napoleon frame also received the Self-Calibrating Exoskeleton Trait
    • Stated that Precious Cargo cannot be cleared by STABILIZE or similar things
    • Stated that the LINGER FRUITINESS status lets you do the JUICING action as a Quick Action regardless of other circumstances.
    • Fixed several discrepancies and grammatical issues throughout

Managed to make a basic version of your Home Forge into an LCP file for Lancer’s supplemental program COMP/CON. Only managed to add the manufacturer as well as the mech and some weapons.
For anyone who’s interested in this LCP, consider this as a VERY early alpha cuz all of this i added took a substantial part of my day and the LCP editor i’m using isn’t perfect
"XD

portly-pilots-ver.-5a_1(1).lcp.7z (7.0 KB)

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Tiny tweak. Fixed License Levels for weapons and added a disclaimer.
Also tweaked one of the weapon titles so that it doesn’t overlap with itself.
portly-pilots-ver.-5a_1(3).lcp.7z (7.4 KB)