Early on, they were all one-time-use, and then in the Alpha, the iconic item don't have that text anymore.
For normal items though on p76, this is still mentioned.
What defines an item's bonus?
Shouldn't this just be based on how well-made it is?
Is it an item, a well-made item, or an excellent item?
In Zear Zero, this is the case. An item simply is more well-made.
But, in Tales from the Loop, when you use the "build" skill, there already seems to be a potentially cool system in place where you give attributes to an item.
From the "build" skill, the item gets attribute words (silent, sturdy, etc). I would argue then that an item has +1
, but also has attributes
- and for each attribute that makes sense to apply in this specific situation, gives a +1 bonus, up to a total of +3
BONUS EFFECTS: (from the alpha rules)
* The thing is more durable than expected. Add +1 to the bonus (up to +3).
* The thing can do more than expected. Add +1 to the bonus (up to +3).
* The thing is more discreet than expected. Add +1 to the bonus (up to +3).
* The thing is high quality in some other fashion. Add +1 to the bonus (up to +3).
My thought is this:
Instead of just having different bonuses, without any clear reason (see list on page 76), I would suggest items are always +1, but MAY have "attribute" words.
They can be;
discreet (pocket knife), sturdy (crowbar), silent (snow joggers), precise (electronics tools), expensive/fashionable (golden bracelet), adaptive (multi-tool), cute (my little pony doll), compassionate (teddy bear), protective (young dog, mini robot), freightening (halloween mask) etc.
When an item is used, EACH attribute word it has, which can be applied, gives an additional +1, up to +3.
Then, either go with...
that items are one-use only
make complications remove an attribute word. The screwdrivers are no longer "precise". The halloween mask is no longer "freightening". Either because the item breaks gradually, or just because the kids no longer think of it that way (they don't believe that the mask is that freightening anymore).
Failing with a +1, no-attribute, item always "breaks" it or reduces it to prop status.
So, how to balance that with Iconic Items
It is today unclear in the rules if iconic items are one-time use (in a scenario), or multi-use.
I also believe that an iconic item, when used in special situations, are made to be +3 items, because they ARE bloody iconic.
This can be done in several ways:
iconic items are +2, but when used in trouble relating to
the kid's pride
, it becomes a +3.
if the item is used to "gather oneself" in an Everyday Life scene, it becomes a +3 item for its next use (or for one use, of the kid's choice).
When it comes to HOW OFTEN it may be used, I would suggest that it can be used once as a +2/+3 item, but that it then can be used as a normal +1 in all applicable situations (GM decides). It IS after all, iconic, and something the kid is very attached to.
So, summary of ITEMS thoughts:
* Items are +1
* Items have "attribute" words which apply additional bonuses when applicable to the situation.
* Complications or failures can remove an attribute
* Failure or complication with an item that no longer has attributes, breaks or redefine the item into a prop (no bonus)
* Iconic items are +2, but may be used as a +3 when facing trouble related to the kid's pride, relationships or problem – or maybe when previously "imbued" with status by the kid.
* Iconic items may be used multiple times, but Not at full capacity.
* Iconic items don't have attribute words. They are already great in so many ways.
What do you other alpha-pdf readers or playtesters think?