Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Rookie—ODST

James doesn't have a last name; the designers of ODST wanted him to fill the roll of the silent protagonist, to further be filled by the player. Our only run in with him is in the Halo 3 standalone ODST, where we get to play as a band soldier among the titular ranks. This time around, we're only looking at the player character, but maybe we'll see Buck sometime.

Name: James
Race: Human
Experience: 90 (Legendary)
Agility d8; Smarts d8; Spirit d8; Strength d8; Vigor d8
Pace 6; Parry 6; Charisma 0; Toughness 12 (6)
Hindrances: Curious, Loyal, Quirk (Doesn't Talk)
Edges: Alertness, Intuition, Quick, Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Quick Draw, Nerves of Steel, Alien Weapon Expert, Level Headed, Steady Hands, Alien Vehicle Expert
Skills: Driving d6, Fighting d8, Healing d4, Notice d8, Piloting d6, Shooting d10, Stealth d8, Throwing d6
Cybernetics: Neural Interface
Inventory: ODST Armor & Helmet (Armor +5, Negate 4 AP, +4 vs rolls to resist heat, Sealed (15 minutes), Zoom (halves notice penalties at range) Targeting Computer (ignores 1 point of Shooting penalties), Low Light Vision), M7 SMG (2d6, AP 2, 12/24/48, Auto, RoF 3, 60 Shots), M6 Magnum (2d6 +1, AP 4, 15/30/60, Semi-Auto, 12 Shots), M9 Grenade ×2 (3d6, AP 2, Medium Burst, 5/10/20, Heavy Weapon), Ammo.

Not much to be said about the Rookie. Young and new to the corps, he was a soldier that easily could have made the ranks of the Spartan programs if things had been different. Alert, stealthy, and lethal, he navigated the streets of New Mombasa for several hours alone during the battle for Earth, and did a brilliant job of reconstructing the events that had transpired over the course of the battle (with a little bit of help from Vergil, of course). Able to both roll with the hits and take them, and being frighteningly accurate to boot, he is more than a match for a couple of Covenant squads.

What really makes someone like this difficult to convert, being the silent protagonist of a video game, is that not only are his skills dependent on the difficulty of the game, and the skill of the player, but so are his Hindrances. The fact that he is almost religiously silent was an easy quirk to add, but I figured eventually that Loyal was a given considering his goal throughout the game, and (assuming the player searches down the phone booths and weapons caches) he strikes me as rather curious as well. As to the Edges, if you include the targeting computer in his gear, it's simply what enables gameplay as found in ODST: the regenerating health system and gunplay in particular.

Regarding their armor, ODSTs have armor that is a bit stronger than normal UNSC marine or army BDUs, and have particular materials weaved into the armor to help alleviate some of the extreme heat experienced during atmospheric reentry. Their helmets are advanced, with a targeting system, vitals data, a compass heading, data storage, tactical map readouts, and the VISR system, which allows the user to see in darker conditions, and outlining hostiles in red to boot.

Anyways, there's our short blurb on the poster child of ODST. Leave comments and question and such below, and I have a treat being prepared for you folks in the coming weeks.

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