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Tabletop Game / RPGStuck

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"No, dude, it's okay. The floating deer head said dying on that rock will give me superpowers."
A general explanation of an average SBURB session, by silverleaf2431.

RPGStuck is a HEAVILY modified variant of the fifth edition of Dungeons and Dragons based on the webcomic, Homestuck. Unlike most tabletop RPGs, it operates on Reddit, using its comment section to play the game, or alternately, through Discord, the latter more prevalent as of 2018 and almost universally so as of 2019. Nevertheless, the system seeks to tell stories of the various sessions of the game Sburb, and the hijinks of its players along with it.

Despite using Sburb as a baseline for the campaigns, most Dungeon Masters (DMs) have resorted to expanding upon the lore surrounding it, or even outright alter several aspects of the official canon.

The current ruleset can be found here.

There are five official campaigns, with the fifth having started on October 12, 2019. The subreddit for it can be found here. However, provided that the rules of the main subreddit are followed, anyone can start their own "session".


This article talks about the rules itself. For the plot of the official campaigns, go to the Recaps page.

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The game provides examples of:

    The Game In General 
  • Came Back Strong: The Rainbowdrinker racial bonus and the God Tier mechanic is this.
  • Cast Calculus: Most sessions involve between four to twelve players, with only a few exceptions.
  • Cast Full of Crazy: Natch. It is a Homestuck roleplay, after all.
  • Colony Drop: A necessity for most sessions. The first segment of the session requires that the player enters into the Medium quickly so that they won't be killed.
  • Dual-World Gameplay: Each player normally has a waking self and a dreamself. The waking self deals with the typical adventures, the dreamself often explores and deals with moon plots in lieu of combat.
  • Dump Stat: Required, with the starting array.
  • Early Game Hell: It often takes several levels before a character is really able to function beyond hitting the enemy over and over. Typically levels 7-9 mark the upswing in 2e, or levels 5 or 10 in 1e.
  • Empty Levels: Aside from advancing your Ability Scores, most levels in either edition don't offer anything special.
    • Averted as of 3rd Edition.
  • Establishing Character Moment: This is the purpose of Day 0, most of the time.
  • First Contact: Any session that includes both humans and trolls will typically need to experience this at some point.
  • Four Lines, All Waiting: There can be up to twelve players in a single session, and each one starts the game alone before they might eventually group up.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: The Black Queen counts as this fairly often.
  • Happy Ending: The ideal ending to a session.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Almost every character has the capability to carry an inhuman amount of stuff of any size, and only equipped items are visible, this can be averted by giving limitations to the inventory, but the base inventory is always subjected to this trope.
  • Improvised Weapon: A character can fight using literally anything, albeit sometimes ineffectively.
    • And sometimes very effectively.
  • Interspecies Romance: Considering the availability of both humans and trolls to players, this is far from unheard of.
  • Kill It with Fire: The standard solution for battling 1e Liches or any other psionic enemy.
    • The optimal solution for battling Ice Revenants and Lich Guards in 2e.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: There have been up to thirty players and higher, whether as a single session or as multiple, intertwined sessions. Incredibly challenging and ill-advised, with far too many issues to list here to pull off with any reliability.
  • Magically Inept Fighter: Humans and highblooded trolls are terrible at psionics, but have increased stats to make up for it.
  • Magic Knight: Minor Psions are versatile, having the ability to effectively use both psionics and weapon attacks.
  • Massive Race Selection: Or perhaps Massive Blood-Color Selection. While the game uses two of Homestuck's prominent races (trolls and humans), the troll hemospectrum is counted as twelve different races, each with different racial bonuses.
    • Expanded in 3rd Edition, where every caste has at least two choices, with humans having four different racials to choose from. Future updates have promised even more.
  • Orphaned Series: Happens unfortunately often when sessions shrink down to unsustainable levels.
  • Psychic Powers: An equivalent to magic in other systems, psionics fulfills many of the functions of magic.
  • Resting Recovery: Taking an extended rest allows characters to fully recharge their HP.
  • The Six Stats: Somewhat of a given, seeing as the system was originally based off of Dungeons & Dragons 5e.
  • Weapon of Choice: Strife Specibi are this. Each character typically starts out with two.

    1st Edition Rules 
  • Awesome, but Impractical: The Harpoon Gun specibus has the highest damage in the game, at 3d8 per weapon tier. This means that at full strength, a Harpoon Gun does 30d8 damage. However, taking two standard actions to reload after firing it only once means its actual damage per turn is still somewhat below average.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: Strength, Intelligence, and Dexterity builds, respectively.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Psions in 1e have the ability to vastly increase both the strength of their attacks, as well as the rate at which they can repeat those attacks between waiting for their Mana to recharge. Eventually this reaches a point of being able to perpetually throw massive attacks that completely blow martial fighters out of the water.
  • Mana: Psionic power points work like this, being a renewable resource used to augment psionic powers to different power levels with every cast.
  • One Stat to Rule Them All: Dexterity, for martial characters. Intelligence for Psions.
  • Squishy Wizard: Major Psions lose access to non-light armour, and have a significant penalty to Constitution.

    2nd Edition Rules 
  • After-Combat Recovery: Vitality Gel restores a tiny bit of hit points after each combat.
  • An Adventurer Is You: The Pillars are this, albeit loosely.
    • Sentinel is the Tank of the Pillars, having HP-related pillar features.
    • Striker fits into the Melee DPS role, mostly having physical attack-related features, as well as psionics-related features.
    • Sniper takes on the role of Ranged DPS, having ranged attack-related features and psionics-related features.
    • Specialist, unlike any other Pillars, does not fit into any specific archetype, instead being proficient in skills and psionics.
  • Awesomeness by Analysis: Path of the Mastermind, natch.
  • Close-Range Combatant: Strikers.
  • Competitive Balance: Comes in three flavors.
    • Magically Inept Fighter: Martials are proficient with multiple weapons and know all special attacks with them, but start with no psionics whatsoever.
    • Magic Knight: Minor psions can be proficient in either weapons or psionics, but trades power for versatility.
    • Squishy Wizard: Major psions have stronger psionics and can pull off the strongest attacks, but are relatively fragile.
  • Damage Reduction: The Aegis condition.
  • Death by a Thousand Cuts: The Path of a Thousand Cuts.
  • Easy Exp: Entering the Game grants a level by itself.
  • Glass Cannon: Major Psion Strikers and Snipers can have insanely high damage output, but they do so by giving up on any durability or sustainability.
  • A Homeowner Is You: As per canon, players must build up their houses to reach their gates. However, their houses can be filled with buildings that provide a variety of services.
  • Job System: Players can pick any paths as they level up, and even multiple ones. However, if they choose paths linked to their pillar and gain enough features from them, they will gain Pillar features as well.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Inverted as opposed to first edition. Psions are widely known for being underpowered compared to their martial counterparts.
    • Undone as 2nd edition progressed. Psions have been brought back up to par, trading sustainability for burst damage and psionic utility.
  • Long-Range Fighter: Snipers.
  • Magic or Psychic?: Usually psychic, though up to the DM's wishes. Sometimes they just have both.
  • Maximum HP Reduction: An uncommon threat.
  • Mooks: Unlike 1e, the current edition has a tremendous amount of variety, expanding on underlings, carapacians, and even Alternia far beyond canon, while throwing in undead and grimdark to boot.
    • Airborne Mook: The canon Titachnids, along with new ones like Harpies and the Proteus.
    • Aquatic Mook: A few dedicated water-based enemies exist, such as the Crocalii.
    • Doom Troops: The carapacians and/or Alternians, depending on the session.
    • Elite Mooks: Carapacians, Undead, Alternian, and Grimdark all come with a warning to the DM that they are tougher than the average underling of the same tier.
    • Mascot Mook: Imps. At one point in development, half of all new monster ideas were alternate takes on the iconic little bastards.
    • Mook Medic: A few monsters like the Barber and Hive Queen can also heal other enemies.
    • Stealthy Mook: From the classic Mimics to Sagittas, there is no short supply of monsters with which to ambush hapless players.
  • Puppet Fighter: Puppetkind.
  • Squishy Wizard: Major Psions are this, starting with lower hit point totals and the inability to use more than basic attacks for their Strife Specibus, in exchange for demonstrating why one should Shoot the Mage First.
  • Stone Wall: Sentinels.
  • Trap Master: Anyone with the Trapkind specibus becomes one of these.
  • Video-Game Lives: As per canon, a player has their dreamself to fall back on. Once they reach godtier, conditionally infinite.
  • Weapon of Choice: Where to even begin?

    3rd Edition Rules 
  • Actually Four Mooks: Part of how hordes are represented, emulating the sorts of many versus one encounters seen in the canon.
  • Actual Pacifist: With the rise of gambits and the dethroning of grist as the sole way by which players can obtain stronger equipment, this playstyle becomes mechanically feasible.
  • An Adventurer Is You: The Pillars make their return, revamped and well-defined.
    • Sentinel, the sole returning Pillar, remains the durable tank, but with a heavier focus on controlling the battlefield and its combatants.
    • Slayer combines the Melee and Ranged DPS roles of the fallen Striker and Sniper paths, focused heavily on damage and damage accessories.
    • Strategist takes on what was left of Specialist, settling into its niche as a jack of all trades with emphasis on confounding the enemy, preparing for a strife beforehand, and being the MVP of any team fight.
  • Climax Boss: The Denizen serves as this or as a Puzzle Boss, depending on the circumstances. Sometimes both.
  • Combat, Diplomacy, Stealth: With the gambit system, Stealth becomes entrenched as yet another way to overcome a challenge, without the all-or-nothing nature of the typical stealth gauntlet.
  • Empty Levels: Averted in the core design philosophy. Every single level now offers something new for the player to use.
  • Equipment Upgrade: With Boondollars finally seeing official implementation alongside rules for buying alchemy-tier items with them, alchemy is no longer the only way for players to obtain more powerful gear.
  • Fantasy Character Classes: Evoked by many of the Paths, though the keystone Paths particularly fit into the niche.
    • Battlemaster: Focused on weapon attacks, the Path grants abilities that take advantage of the game's Standard Status Effects, alongside a medley of other Steps to round it out.
    • Battlemind: With their iconic Ward, Battleminds specialize in soaking up damage while expanding their ability to debilitate enemies and support their allies.
    • Berserker: The eponymous stance grants Aegis, while other Steps focus on augmenting existing defensive abilities or buffing their damage ouput.
    • Courage: Taking advantage of the new Setback condition, this Path allows players to push themselves to finish a battle faster, before their accumulating Setback catches up with them.
    • Harmony: The Wisdom-focused keystone returns mostly intact, updated and rewired to have its Balance Points resource work off each other. In other words, its Steps finally work together in Harmony.
    • Martial Spirit: This Path settles into its niche as a defensive tank, with Steps for resisting enemy debuffs and more ways to defend for allies.
    • Mastermind: Also mostly unchanged from its previous incarnation, Masterminds use Intelligence to aid their allies and outsmart their enemies.
    • Protagonist: All players are protagonists, but some are more important than others, like these players, who exert their force of personality into tangible effects in the game.
    • Thaumaturge: Sporting their well-known Beam Spam as an inherent tool now, these dreamers have Steps to round out their moveset.
    • Tracer: Continuing to sport their trademark Trace, they are second to none in single-target damage.
  • Final Boss: The Black King, fittingly, serves this role as the most powerful Adversary-type creature.
  • Heavily Armored Mook: Some creatures have armor as a separate pool of hit points, requiring the player to skill check to bypass it, or bring siege-type damage to bear.
    • A few creatures have active armor that requires constant skill checks. Such creatures are better off being dispatched another way.
  • Invincible Minor Minion: Any minion under the Lich's Phylactery spell.
    • Any minion under the Dagon's Oceania's Runestone, to a lesser extent.
  • Magic Music: The fraymotif system, with a side of Mix-and-Match Weapon.
  • Mook Commander: The carapacians have officers to lead their squads into combat. Naturally, such pairings are a formidable challenge for any player.
  • Multiple Life Bars: A new addition, monsters can have a wide variety of multiple targetable parts, from destructible limbs like eyes and arteries, to various types of armor, and simply destroying their weapons.
  • Multiple Persuasion Modes: Encouraged with the disposition and decor systems, encouraging players to leverage their decors and know their opponent's dispositions to stack the dice in their favor when dealing with others.
  • Non-Combat EXP: Besides experience from strifes, gambits and story beats now share center stage.
    • In particular, the story beats aren't connected to some specific game mechanic, like strifes or gambits. These are a tool for the GM to use to reward players for exceptional play.
  • Puzzle Boss: Some Adversaries serve as this, defying conventional combat tactics.
  • Shield-Bearing Mook: With objects being more represented on a creature's stat block, shields were inevitable. They still fill their same function, with the caveat that enough blocking will break the shield. Luckily, players have no such limitations on their own shields.
  • Skill Scoresand Perks: The decor system falls into the Perks system, and Pillars and Paths too, for that matter.
  • Three Approach System: The three sets of non-sentient dispositions. The major/minor/martial divide. The damage/utility/summon fields into which fraymotifs can be roughly partitioned. The Intelligence/Wisdom/Charisma divides in Pillars and Paths.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Given mechanical importance with Demeanor, where a player can equalize dire odds by drawing upon themselves.

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