Tuesday, August 11, 2015

New Cryptworld Skill: Photography

Mama don't take my Kodachrome away!
Like the Hypnotism skill posted previously, Photography is another skill found in the original Pacesetter CHILL RPG that didn't make the cut in CRYPTWORLD. Since CRYPTWORLD attempts in part to be a little more contemporary in setting than its predecessor, this exclusion makes sense in our modern world of digital photography where everyone has a camera on their smartphone, an Instagram account, and access to YouTube. Traditional film photography does have its role to play as witnessed in many classic horror movies predating the digital age (both in terms of setting and theatrical release date), so I've decided to add it back in.

Here is my conversion of the Photography skill updated and re-written for the rules and terminology found in CRYPTWORLD:

Exclusive: Yes
Base: (Pcn+Dex)/2
Check: General and Specific

Brown Lady of Raynham Hall
The Photography skill encompasses both traditional still photography and moviemaking requiring the use of film (or photographic plates for early still photography in time periods prior to the late 19th century). Characters with this skill can take photographs or make movies with professional equipment as well as process and develop their work as a general check; failure means something went wrong such as poor lighting, overexposure, uneven development, or the lens cap was accidentally left on. This exclusive skill is not required, however, to use consumer friendly point-and-shoot instamatic cameras and instant self-developing cameras, or when using more modern digital photography including digital cameras and smartphones to take pictures or films.

Characters possessing the Photography skill may also attempt to determine specific facts about  an existing photo or film such as how it was taken, its age, the type of camera, film, or paper used, or if the photo has been faked or doctored in any way. This is a specific check using the Knowledge check result key.

Photography can be a valuable tool when collecting evidence of the existence of the supernatural and preparing to confront it. While this evidence may easily be dismissed as a hoax by the scientific community or general public, those aware of the supernatural’s existence can sometimes find the answers they seek hidden within. The Photography skill can be used to discover information about the subject matter of a photo or film including mundane facts like where and when it was taken, or more esoteric insight as to the nature of the supernatural occurrence or thing depicted. This is a specific check using the Research check result key.
Old Camera - photo by George Hodan