Unknown Armies


Nothing you've ever known is true. Nor nothing you've ever loved. You don't know if there's a Hell below you, or a Heaven above. The Truth, my friend, is somewhere out there, just waiting to be released. But before you embark on your great endeavor, know that you'll never return to peace.
- Charles Edward Jaggard

There is a world out there where you grow up, go to school, maybe travel if you’re lucky, get a job change jobs quit jobs get fired be unemployed have sex get another job have more sex maybe marry love kids divorce alimony join the church new jobs more schooling saving for retirement it’s almost too late getting old death of friends lovers enemies dying old or young or with others or alone. Leaving nothing behind to tell the universe you ever were.

That’s the world you live in, stripped of the false promises (but not the lies), the elusive fame (and rehab clinics), success (because it doesn’t really make a difference), but never hope. Without it, you couldn’t despair, or want to be someone else, or have those high moments to make all others always seem so pale, even if there are so many of them compared to the hopes and dreams come true ...

You want out. Maybe you need to be out. You know something is out there, something bigger, stranger, more exciting. You’ve seen glimpses of it, like a message coming through a cell phone in the mountains: garbled nonsense, but with some grain of truth to it.

The kid in the grocery store with the strange smile who giggled as he cut his hand open with his car keys. The one the bullies never picked on, and refused to say why.
That annoying suck up who always knew the answers at tests, but seems as surprised as everyone else when he gave them.
A bag lady people say predicts storms. She can tell you when it’ll rain, or snow, or be happy: and those days you’re life will be just like she said - she predicts the storm of emotions in your heart and soul.
The old drunkard at the bar people say can speak to the dead and can get you a new body if you pay his price.
The white cat some say lives in the Days Inn and exists to destroy the sanity of all who work there.
The odd nightmare you get of dice always landing as seven, even if they have six sides.
The stories you’ve heard of some girl who will take away those memories that hurt, and just needs the keys to your house in return. Or maybe your soul.
The odd feeling you sometimes get that you're never alone.
The kid who did all the daredevil stunts for the sheer thrill who once, asking if you'd play chicken with himm said he had the real truth, and something in his half-mad eyes almost made you believe him for second ... and his wild laugh, as he cried: "Trust no one, especially not yourself!" and ran out, maybe running from the look in his own eyes, and dodged 3 trucks before he was struck, and died.
The old man who makes toys that are almost alive, and looks a bit like Santa Claus, if St. Nick was thinner.
The odd sensation sometimes that something in your computer screen is looking back at you.

It’s all little things, or rumours, or stupid things, but you think it means something. You want it to mean something, for there to be more to the world than what it has to offer. And sometimes, in that half moment before you sleep, or when you awaken suddenly with no reason why, you almost know what it is, what you’re reaching for, what is out there ....

If you only knew. Maybe things would make sense then. Or they’d finally stop making sense and you’d find out if there is a difference between madness and innocence after all...

The thing about Zen is that it pushes contradictions to their ultimate limit where one has to choose between madness and innocence. And Zen suggests that we may be driving toward one or the other on a cosmic scale. Driving toward them because, one way or another, as madmen or innocents, we are already there.
It might be a good idea to open our eyes and see.
- Thomas Merton

Welcome to the World of Unknown Armies. It's our world, on the surface. But below the thin veneer of appearances lies another world, a world of post-modern magick and demons, a world of truths and lie, where knowledge is power and power too often destroys.

This is a 2nd edition UA campaign set in the Canon universe (with changes as the story and such create or necessitate, naturally). It's going to be strange, and spooky, and even more fun than psychedelics! Honest! The GM could tell you, but we have him locked up in a closet.

PC creation information is available at The Atlas Games UA page. The PDF is mandatory reading for players since it explains the world, PC creation and the street level UA universe very well.
On that note, no one can begin as an adept (or consciously an avatar) unless their have the UA2 book book or/and talk to Alcar about it, and likely beg a bit.

Game Time

The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.
- Frank P. Church, from the famous New York Sun editorial "Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus"

The game will be played at 9:30 pm EST (6:30 pm PST) on Saturday nights on irc.esper.net channel #game1.

If a session is cancelled by the GM, feel free to rp something between your PCs and send it to the Gm (along with a summary OF it so he doesn't have to read the whole log) and you'll not only get rp, but exp for it.

If you're unable to make a session, either have someone who has been watching the game seconded to play your PC, ask another player to or run the risk of the PC being NPC'd. In the latter case the PC gains no exp.


Your emotions make you a monster. The question, then, is "Would you rather be a feeling monster or a non-feeling machine?".
- Lincoln Nielson

Caltak and FirestormZero are the current players from the previous campaign.
Joining them may be aslhk and EliteCabbage. Stay tuned :p

PC descriptions will be posted on the campaign section, but not character sheets.

If you want to join you can always e-mail Alcar or contact me on irc.

This campaign is a continuation of one that was forced into a haitus in August. New PCs can enter easily, however, and some existing players are even making different PCs.

In combat there is no sanity, only useful ways of being insane. (Jack Cady)

The world is a fine place and worth fighting for.
- Ernest Hemmingway

"Somewhere out there is someone who had loving parents, watched clouds on a summer's day, fell in love, lost a friend, is kind to small animals, and knows how to say "please" and "thank you," and yet somehow the two of you are going to end up in a dirty little room with one knife between you and you are going to have to kill that human being.
It's a terrible thing. Not just because he's come to the same realization and wants to survive just as much as you do, neaning he's going to try and puncture your internal organs to set off a cascading trauma effect that ends with you voiding your bowels, dying alone and removed from everything you've ever loved. No, it's a terrible thing because somewhere along the way you could have made a different choice. You could have avoided that knife, that room, and maybe found some common ground between the two of you. Or at least, you might have divied up some turf and left each other alone. That would have been a lot smarter, wouldn't it? Even dogs are smart enough to do that. Now you're staring into the eyes of a fellow human being and in a couple of minutes one of you is going to be vomiting blood to the rhythm of a fading heartbeat. The survivor is going to remember this night for the rest of her life."

That is the first two paragraphs of the UA2 rulebook combat chapter. The book then goes on to give six options to avoiding a fightm then says that if you're stil determined "Ther rest of this chapter contains rules for simulating the murder of human beings. Have fun." Why did I quote that? Because it sums up UA combat perfectly. Combat, to use Hobbes out of context, is "nasty, poor, brutish, solitary, and short." It's a nasty thing to do, a poor way to resove problems, a brutish solution and you die alone with your life ended very quickly.

This isn't to say that combat doesn't occur - just that if you do get into combat, try to exhaust all other options first unless you have a death. It's that simple, that true. Consider this a friendly warning :)

Sample (first edition) PCs

"Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats."
- H.L. Mencken

These are 2 pcs just to give people an idea of what a finished UA PC can look like. They were both made for the first UA campaign. The first is Baliadocs, the second is an NPC I made that never got much use.

Some notes: Wyatt is probably not the sort of person you'd want to play in this game. The pc (by Baliadoc) worked with Project-S. Outside of it, an insane psycho isn't the best pc to make. Players should take note of the innovative use of skill names - part of what makes UA fun :)
Oh, yes, and Wyatt was the first PC to die as an incidental note. He attempted to kill a mayor in a hospital and took on two police officers. He killed the older one but the rookie shot him right in the back and kill him.

Jeff is a PC more suited to a street-level game. Yes, he has a strange ability but he doesn't know what it is or why it works and is scared of it. The old man he did work for was a Mechanomancer in the first campaign, which would have eventually brought him into contact with a lot of the PCs. The contrast between him and Wyatt is amusing :)

The Something Shady About Past was just for that campaign. Players in this one can free free to omit it. As well, PC sheets will NOT be posted on the game site. All I'll put up is nicks and descriptions.

Wyatt Holiday, Project-S Employee
How do you think like a human? Go into madness first, probably, then out the other side.
- Terry Pratchett, “Only You Can Save Mankind”
Summary:Project S nice. Feed and shelter. As long as they don't leash me, I do what they want.
Description:Wyatt is an impressive man, around 6'5" tall, with broad powerful shoulders and a general look of strength about him. He has dull brown hair, even duller green eyes, and is wearing a full length old-fashioned leather duster. You can't see anything beneath.
Something Shady About Past:Flesh is good. Torture the dead. My mind is their cage. Haha.
Personality:See above.
Obsession:Survival. At all costs. No one takes my life from me again.
Wound Points:70
Fear:(Helplessness) Cages. Bars. Restraint.
Rage:We are all free. Take others freedom, die. Simple.
Noble:Childhood is holiness. Protect. At all costs.
Body: 70Speed: 70Mind: 30Soul: 50
Body Skills
Beating the ever-loving fuck out of you. That's right. You. 35%
Drink like a dog. 35%
Athletics. That's it. Nothing flashy here. 30%
Speed Skills
Dodge 45%
Gunslinging 55%
Mind Skills
Notice 25%
Recognize Toxins 20% (Has tasted heroin in people's blood, other bad stuff)
Remember Names & Faces 15%
Soul Skills
Physical Enhancement 30%
Surge of Adrenaline 30%
Good with Kids 20%
2 Six Shooters
4 9mm's
2 Shotguns
[Had a hayday when he met Project-S's armory :)]
Silver Ammo for all of them. Works just as well for humans, so why bother with other stuff?
Extra clips, belts of bullets and shells for the revolvers and shotguns
Leather duster
Wide-brimmed hat
Thick levi's work pants
Long sleeved shirt

Jeff Summers, Mechanic
Chaos itself is the ultimate pinnacle upon which all order is recomplicated.
- Norman Spinrad, “Child of Fortune”
Summary:Jeff is your average person. He goes to work, comes home, feeds the dog, kisses his wife, wishes they had children. He co owns a mechanics shop and in his spare time does some odd fixing up of stuff for an old man outside the city. He's beginning to suspect this stuff isn't legit but isn't sure what to make of it or who he can tell about it.
Description:Jeff is a quiet man with an average apppearance, average build and, you gussed it, average height.
Something Shady About Past:Jeff once cured the kid next door of acne and is utterly terrified people will discover it was his fault.
Personality:Jeff tends to be a shy, quiet man who only really involves himself in others' conversations of it involves skills he knows of or he feels he can contribute to it. He tends to be nice and cheerful but if anyone threatens his family he goes off the deep end.
Obsession:Building Things. Jeff loves to build and tinker with stuff.
Wound Points:60
Fear:(helplessness) Not being there for his family when they need him.
Rage:Insulting his family or threatening to murder those he cares of.
Noble:Give help to the needy free of charge.
Body: 60 (Works Out)Speed: 50 (Catches falling stuff at work)Mind: 60 (Focused on learning)Soul: 50 (Friendly)
Body Skills
Working Out 20%
Punch you in the face 15%
Lift Heavy Things And Don't Break Back: 30%
Plain Looking Person 25%
Speed Skills
Dodge 15%
Driving 35%
Juggle 25%
Shoot a gun 15%
Mind Skills
General Education 15%
Notice 15%
Mechanics 30%
Tinkering 30%
Soul Skills
Charm 15%
Lie 15%
Fight Entropy 30%
I Look Boring 20%
Work Kit
Some business cards
A small pistol with 1 clip, often left at home for his wife
Some doggy treats in his pocket

Fight Entropy: This skill means that technical stuff just works better around Jeff. Things he fixes stay fixed longer and he tends to be very orderly. He can even establish an almost magickal rapport with technology sometimes. He has rarely used this skill consciously and the results the few times he did terrified him.

Jeff also has the advantage that he is phyically rather unremarkable. For some reason people just don't pay much attention to him. While he can't become invisible many people tend to miss him in crowds or underestimate him a lot.

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