In the comments to my last post my friend. mentioned my rule for risky extra spellcasting. Nicked from Apocalype World. Here it is.
If you want to cast a spell that you know but have not memorised then roll 2d6.
If you are a Cleric, add your WIS modifier.
If a Magic User then add your INT modifier.
On a 10+ the spell goes off,no trouble.
On a 7 - 9 then the spell goes off. But Something Terrible happens.
On a 6 or less. The spell does not go off. AND Something Terrible happens.
I built a d100 chart of strange events. Its cribbed from and inspired by, the magic table in Vornheim, results from the Metamorphica, the mutation table by Scrap Princess, this d1000 table someone made for 4th edition(much props for doing that for Fourth.) and the Terrors of the Warp from Dark Heresy. (Though that is surprisingly boring when you actually look at it. Like everything else in Dark Heresy the totality of the Gothic horror of the nightmare future can be reduced to an endless series of pluses and minuses on a d10.)
I'm reluctant to post it as it's made up mainly of other peoples material but if anyone wants it then let me know. The main convenience is that it could save you the half hour it takes to steal all your favourite fuckups and combine them into one giant thing.
The exact choice of stuff was interesting. One of the initial characters ended up being cursed so that it always rained wherever they were. Even though this had very little in-game effect it ended up depressing the players so much they just gradually forgot about the guy and left him behind.
It seems like the best results are ones that are powerfully immediate, negative but also with enough imaginative energy and a rich enough nature that they can be mis-used by players.
Something that dramatically alters the scene in a living and active way, and that no-one could want to happen to them, but that just might have a weird up-side.
Our Cleric ended up being cursed with a variant of Zak S's Vile Hound spell and had to perform an emergency Cesarean on himself to remove a little Chihuahua.
|he was a good dog|
He then failed his loyalty roll to command the beast who immediately made friends with another PC after being fed scraps of flesh from a dead Wizard. The dog was ultimately made useful as a lure for monsters, against the wishes of its owner.
Long term persistent low-grade problems just seem to irritate the fuck out of players. You want to give them short term colourful problems, they like that.
Though saying that, the same player now has a portal to the Nightosphere inside his head.
Whenever I play with Nate I always end up maiming or mutating him. God knows whats going on in my subconscious. Sorry dude.
(he has a lawful god as well, but I couldnt think of many lawful-but-interesting entries so he gets the same one as everyone else)