Chi

CHI is a supernatural, mystical power represented by your CHI attribute. It is an optional system for imbuing martial artists with pseudo-magical abilities.

Shaolin monks and bushido samurai are masters of CHI (though the latter might call it ki), but they are certainly not the only users of this mystical energy and not all characters will completely understand what it is. Despite this ignorance, CHI can be central to how action stars perform their stunts, extreme survivalists push to the next plateau, soldiers carry on with multiple bullet wounds, and countless other heroic feats.

CHI doesn’t give you the ability to perform a roundhouse kick or an armlock - those combat maneuvers can be learned by anybody simply by taking the relevant exploits. CHI allows you to do seemingly magical things - walk on water, levitate, withstand extreme punishment, heal wounds, and so on.

Be it heart, ki, aligned chakras, a reservoir of rage, the eye of the tiger, or simply holding one’s focus in times of stress, CHI often plays a critical role in the action genre.

CHI Attribute

You may use your CHI attribute in place of another attribute whenever you are using your martial arts skill to make an attribute check. This will usually be an attack roll. Note that some martial arts also allow you to use your martial arts skill with certain weapons.

CHI Points

Characters have a number of CHI points equal to their CHI attribute. Adopting CHI stances depletes this store.

Once per day, characters can meditate (or imbibe alcohol, or rock out to their favorite tunes, or some other task that puts them in the right frame of mind) for five minutes to regain all their CHI points.

Stances

CHI uses on a number of “stances”. These stances represent different manifestations of a character’s inner power - for example, the mountain stance (H̄in) allows the martial artist to perform incredible feats of strength, while the lightning stance (Phanyu) is associated with preternaturally fast movement. A stance might not always be a physical posture; sometimes it may a mental attitude.

A stance is an exploit. Each stance grants you a number of benefits. Adopting a stance is a free action, costs 1 CHI point, and lasts until the start of your next turn. You may only adopt one stance at a time.

In total, you may learn a number of stances equal to your CHI dice pool; in other words, if your CHI attribute is 10 (4d6) you may learn up to four stances. However, you must have a CHI attribute of 10 or more before you can learn any stances.

 


H̄in (Mountain) Stance

The strength of your CHI manifests in an incredible sense of balance and resilience for physical stress. You are as indomitable as a mountain, able to bear incredible weight, make parts of your body invulnerable, and strike with so great a focus and force that nearly any object will shatter under your blows. Your opponents learn that you are well-suited to suffer a flurry of strikes, and to fear the power of your own.

  • You may use your CHI attribute in place of your END attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
  • You become immobile. No attack roll from a creature your size, one size larger, or smaller than you, can move you.
  • You cannot move from your location, although you may act normally in that location.

 


Daichin (Warrior) Stance

Your soul is that of the warrior, destined to compete, to fight, and to win. When your CHI surges forth it can be incredibly deadly, able to reach preternatural heights of physical awareness that turns you into a legendary combatant. Your opponents quickly become wary of the precision of your blows, your amazing reflexes, and how closely you can bring both body and mind into perfect attunement.

  • You can bring your mind and body into perfect alignment. Increase all three of your DEFENSEs to the highest of these three values.
  • You gain +1d6 to all damage rolls.
  • You cannot heal or be healed.

 


Wéifēng (Wind) Stance

When using your CHI you become lighter, faster, and fleeter than any normal human could ever be, able to move with the silence of a subtle gust of wind, run across water and tree branches, dash with incredible speed, and dodge so quickly as to become a blur. Your opponents are impressed by your reflexes and rattled by how talented you are at dodging their attacks.

  • You may use your CHI attribute in place of your AGI attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
  • You double your SPEED.
  • You can walk across the surface of any liquid.
  • You can ignore a number of attacks equal to your CHI dice pool until the beginning of your next turn as long as you take your full movement during your turn. You must choose to ignore an attack before the attack roll is made.

 


Phanyu (Lightning) Stance

Your fists and feet are like lightning, and when using CHI you strike your enemies in the blink of an eye with explosive force. Dodging attacks is second nature to you, and your response of battering blows is nearly invisible to the naked eye. Your opponents are brought down quickly by your aggressive flurries, if they even see them coming at all.

  • You may use your CHI attribute in place of your AGI attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
  • You gain an additional action which can be used to make a melee attack.
  • You charge your body and wait to dodge an attack until the very last possible moment, moving so fast that you seem not to move at all. You negate the next attack against you that you are aware of.
  • You turn into a veritable whirlwind of deadly fists and feet. You can spend all your actions to make one melee attack against every adjacent opponent.

 


Toka (Stone) Stance

You are as enduring as rock and tough to the core, and your CHI manifests by protecting you from harm. Your skin and limbs can harden like stone, and eventually you learn to stand against any force, no matter how great. Your opponents are dumbfounded by your resilience and defeated by your unwillingness to falter against their attacks.

  • You may use your CHI attribute in place of your END attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
  • You make your body remarkably resilient to attack. You gain SOAK equal to your CHI attribute.
  • You become immune to critical hits.
  • You become immune to one energy type, chosen when you enter the stance. Choose from fire/heat, cold, sonic, or electricity.

 


Sūrya (Sun) Stance

The essence of your CHI is as pure as sunlight and you can manifest it to be just as nourishing. You are able to heal wounds, alleviate the pains others, and even bring the recently deceased back to life. Enemies are frustrated by your presence on the battlefield and confounded when your allies are restored by your abilities.

  • You glow with inner light; the area 30’ around you is as bright as daylight.
  • You can heal another creature by touch, restoring HEALTH equal to your CHI attribute with one action.
  • You can use all your actions to spread a warmth of energy that mends wounds and heals injuries. You restore HEALTH equal to your CHI to all allies within 30’.
  • All allies within the light of your glow (30’) gain +4 MENTAL DEFENSE.
  • You gain +1d6 HEALTH at the end of your turn.

 


Umfula (River) Stance

Your CHI makes you intimately familiar to the energies that flow through all living creatures, and your incredible awareness allows you to bend them to your whim. You are able to sense the CHI of another, align the minds of your allies, and express supreme concentration in the face of attacks that would leave the mind of any other person completely destroyed. Your opponents are disturbed by your cerebral fortitude and undone by their own mental assaults.

  • You may use your CHI attribute in place of your AGI attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
  • You focus your CHI against your attacker, swirling the power they wield against you and gracefully turning it back. When a melee attack misses you, the attacker causes its melee damage to itself.
  • If you are knocked prone, you automatically stand again for free.
  • You are immune to mental attacks
  • You can spend one action to step through the space in between. You briefly cross the backdoors of existence, teleporting up to 30’ to a location you can see.

 


Yuèliàng (Moon) Stance


You can physically manifest your CHI with surprising ease, using it to perform feats that defy belief. You are able to wield it as a weapon that harms the souls of other creatures, or gather it for deadly attacks that can level buildings. Your opponents are bewildered and taken aback by your supernatural powers.

  • You double your JUMP distances.
  • You can wrap your fists in mystical energy to punch your target's very soul. When you make a melee attack, you target your foe’s MENTAL DEFENSE instead.
  • You can make melee attacks against targets up to 30’ away.
  • You can levitate to a height in feet up to your CHI attribute.

 


Ma-eum (Mind) Stance

Your understanding of CHI has revealed the void behind all things, and you have attained some mastery over this oblivion. You are able to hamper the CHI of others, take it away from them, or even negate the use of mystical power nearby. Your opponents are left powerless before you, defeated in the wake of your control over the nothing that is all.

You may use your CHI attribute in place of your INT attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
When you successfully attack an enemy, you drain 1 CHI point from them.
CHI stances within 30’ of you cost double the normal number of CHI points.
You are able to sense the presence of CHI within 100’, and the number of CHI points that person has.

 


Gèxìng (Heart) Stance

Your control over CHI opens windows to the souls of those you look upon. By utilizing your abilities, you can manipulate the emotions of others, completely conceal your own, and empower others to reach further and fight harder. Your opponents are simultaneously filled with both wonder and great malice when in your presence.

  • You may use your CHI attribute in place of your CHA attribute for the purpose of attribute checks.
  • Your deceptions have so much conviction that to all others it is an unquestionable truth. You tell perfect lies. These can be as outlandish as you like and creatures are allowed to disbelieve it, but no power, technology, magic, or check can reveal that you are not speaking the truth.
  • You may make a mental attack against a creature within 30’. If successful, it becomes your thrall, gaining the dominated condition. It can shake this condition off as normal.
  • You automatically sense lies and deceptions. You do not necessarily learn the truth, but you are aware of untruths.
  • You may freely donate your LUC dice to allies within 30’ on their turn. They must use the donated dice immediately.