VERS -> Basics
The entire system builds on the following core concepts. While nothing here is genre shaking, it is still important to lay out the foundation before diving in further.
Nearly all rolls are made by the player. Rolls are either Tests, Contests, or Reactions. Tests are rolls with no opposition from other characters, and often have penalties set by the environment or circumstances. Contests, on the other hand, are directly opposed by at least one other character and have penalties set by the Skills of that opposing NPC. However, they can also have additional modifiers from the environment and circumstances as well. Reactions are responses to actions, such as dodging an attack or avoiding a trap, and can otherwise be Tests or Contests depending on the situation. Sometimes the GM will wish to keep results of a roll secret and will make them for the player, although this should be kept to a minimum.
Rolls are always 3d6 plus any relevant Skill and/or miscellaneous bonuses, and measured against a Target Number (TN) set by the character's Attributes. The difference between the TN and the result is important, and is referred to as Degrees of Success (or Degrees of Failure). These can be "spent" on Stunts, which are similar to criticals in other systems, and add effects to the success or failure.
The effects of a roll are determined by the Effect Value, or EV, compared to the target’s RV or Resistance Value. The effect is set by the action or ability being performed. For an attack the effect is damage, and the EV is the total amount of damage that the target could take. For a psychic telekinesis effect, the EV may be the effective Strength that the character can use to lift things. For an invisibility spell, the EV may be a bonus to Stealth rolls. The RV is typically armor or magical protection of some kind, although in certain situations the target’s Attributes may contribute.
On their Turn, every character can make 2 Standard Actions, which can consist of moving, attacking, or activating an ability. There are also free actions, which are defined by the GM, but should be simple like saying a word ("Halt!") or pressing a button. Characters can take the same action twice in a row, such as making a double move, two attacks, or activating two abilities.
During an episode, a player can request a "Flashback," which is a short scene in which they prepare for whatever problem they are currently encountering. The main rule here is that the flashback cannot change known facts (If the officer is standing in front of you, you cannot flashback and have him assassinated, for example). GM has final say on when and if flashbacks are available and what the final outcome is. Flashbacks are roleplayed scenes, however, and not just "I Win" buttons, and the actions taken during them must make sense within the scope of the character, the setting, and the situation.
A Note on Rolling
Finally, a reminder. Dice are important tools in roleplaying games, however, over reliance on them slows the game, bores the players, and sucks the energy out of the story. Both player and GM should remember this golden rule: Only roll dice if the player can fail, and the failure result is interesting from a story perspective.
Yes, you may fail to tie your shoe, but no one cares. There is no drama there. Failing to disarm that bomb, on the other hand? Yea, there are a lot of people who are going to care about that. And a character who couldn’t fail the roll? Also, no drama or interest there. Just let them succeed and carry on with the story. Every die roll should count, and an important dramatic moment should rest on that result. Otherwise just narrate it and move the game forward.
|VERS Playtest v20.7 - Online Rule Reference|
|Making a Character||Character Profile - Mechanical Aspects (Attributes - Skills - Abilities - Gear)|
|Gameplay||Mental Conflict - Physical Conflict - Social Conflict - Stunts|
|Optional Rules||Not Yet Complete|
|Gamemastering||Not Yet Complete|
|Storytelling and Drama||Not Yet Complete|
|Advanced Techniques||Not Yet Complete|
|Appendices||Example Abilities||Fantasy - Psionics - Superheroes|
|Example Gear||Prehistoric to Dark Ages - Medieval to Renaissance - Modern - Sci-Fi|
|Example NPCs||Animals - People - Fantasy - Horror - Sci-Fi|