Legacy of an Empire
A Group is any sort of NPC that is encountered in large numbers. A group is made up of a definite number of members which are however not individually modeled, but appear only as a group. The group template can be used for swarms of bees, spiders, a pack of wolves, herds of deer or sheep, gangs of bandits, a squad of city guards, or even your own personal mercenary group. Whenever a group has a leader or other member with exceptional abilities or function, that one should be modeled separately as a creature or even full character.
A group has the same three aspects as any creature may have. The first is its concept, what kind of group is it, who are its members? The second one is about its motivation, what keeps the group together, and what makes it dangerous? The third aspect is its weakness, what could break the group apart, destroy its morale, or change its antagonism?
As with a creature, a group’s motivation or weakness is not always plain to the players and must first be discovered. One of the bandits might be their weakest link, or an attentive observer may notice its the fresh smell of their wound attracted the sharks.
Skills, Stunts & Teamwork
Group skills and stunts work just like creature skills and stunts. However, when doing actions that can be improved through teamwork groups have an advantage. If the group has a skill of +1 and above, for each member that is reasonably able to help in the task, the group gets a +1 bonus on their roll. If, for example, five people in a group with Physique (+2) are pushing against a fallen tree, one rolls and the other four each give a +1 to the roll, resulting in a +6 modifier on the roll.
Groups can be incredibly powerful through teamwork, so GMs should be careful how they use it. If your heroes are attacked by a group, be aware that it doesn’t make sense that all members of a large group of bandits can simultaneously attack a single Player. Split up groups and distribute their teamwork reasonably. If the group consists of small creatures like spiders which can all attack the same player, consider giving a +1 bonus only for each additional 5 members of the group for a more reasonable bonus.
Stress & Consequences
Group do not have any consequences but they have several stress tracks to represent the number of individuals in the group. If the group is one of small or weak members, they only have one stress slot each. If they are big and strong, they each have two stress slots. Damage done to a group automatically spills over, meaning that if a member is taken out, the remaining shift is dealt as damage to the next member.