To create a character, pick a species (p2) and a class (p3).

You have 10 Hero Points (p5), plus what your class and species give you.

To read more about the world, check out the setting elements (p4).

This is a pen-and-paper sci-fi roleplaying game.

Valence

Thematic Elements: Genetechnologies corporation, controlling half of the galaxy. Genetically engineered Ultramercenaries, outfitted by GT. An artificial species, the Demons, who ruined the Earth. An Earth devastated by asteroid impact. Million-year-old alien cultures stagnated by lack of creativity. Enhancement Suits, the most advanced armor created. Mechanized Assault Craft, robotic armor 20 feet tall. Planetary warlords and their fleets of starships. Photon swords that slice through ship hull plating. Gatling lasers and entropy beams. An enhanced computer network called the Lattice. Ancient starships dating from the fallen Human Empire. The Coalition, remnants of that Empire in the galactic core. The Lording, a universal source of magical energy. The Lords Dimension, a shadow of our own world. Scientific laws of Lording, and people who break them. The magical and valuable element Xenite. Dozens of alien species, each with multiple cultures. Worlds of beauty and worlds of devastation. Starships teleported light-years by Tesseract Drive. Space stations inhabited by millions. Black ops teams and covert military operatives. Propaganda in rhetoric, trends, even advertising. A race to reach the galaxy Andromeda.
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Rules for Playing the Game: Play freestyle until some sort of important action comes up. The GM will describe the results of all actions based on common sense. If you would prefer a different outcome, spend a Hero Point to take over narration. You and the GM each roll a die, and whomever comes up higher gets to describe the result. You can spend as many points as you want in this process, but you have to describe each point spent as a sort of retry or new approach. Don't describe any results as final until everyone is done spending points. Example: GM: “You try to sneak into Genetech corporate HQ. Their security is pretty good, and it is likely you will be caught.” You: “I'm really charismatic, though. I can talk my way through.” You spend a hero point. Each of you rolls, and you fail. GM: “Before you even get in the front door the guards are staring at you.” You pay another point, and you both roll again. This time you win. You: “I bluff the guards, con the front desk, and I'm in the restricted area before anyone even realizes it.” You can gain Hero Points at the end of a game session by doing heroic things during it. At the end of a session, everyone suggests times when a character was in danger or made a sacrifice, and the GM hands out 2-3 points for each incident.
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This is a tiny, folded science fiction roleplaying game. Valence is a game of starships and space, of rebuilding empires and megacorporations, set against a backdrop millions of years old. It's laser pistols and photon blades, mystical powers and bizarre aliens. It's hope and change, and a whole lot of space opera. We hope you have fun.

Change the World...

...or someone will change it for you.

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Inuuel are thin and wispy with butterfly wings. Caract are giant and serpentine. Budetug are buglike and subterranean. Valorian are bug-like and amphibious. Nesti are walking bundles of reddish vines. 2 Each species and class have an extra stash of 5 Hero Points per game session for their specialty. You can also have one item that acts as 5 Hero Points, like a starship, photon blade, autodoc, mecha, or even someone who owes you a favor. 3

Humans(Creativity) Caract (Brute Strength) Inuuel (Magic) Budetug (Determination) Valorian (Intelligence) Nesti (Agility) Examples: Expert (scientist), Expert (doctor), Expert (diplomat), Soldier (deep space), Soldier (mecha), Soldier (pilot), Mage (healer), Mage (elemental), Rogue (thief), Rogue (assassin).

The following species inhabit the galaxy, each with their own area of specialty:

Species and Class

There are four broad classes: Experts, Soldiers, Mages, and Rogues. Each picks a focused area of specialty.

Advice on the rules: You can spend Hero Points on the behalf of others, but the points have to be from your personal stash, not what you get from your class, species, or equipment. Your character has to be involved in the event somehow, even if only in a flashback or via comlink. If you and the GM tie on a roll, you can choose to make the tie a reality in the game world, or to just re-roll. The more important antagonists have Villain Points (though not all antagonists are really “villains”). These allow the GM to force a re-roll just like Hero Points do. Your characters start the game competent but not godlike. When the GM describes a few armed guards coming with guns, you can use a Hero Point to roll and (if you win) take over narration. If there are a whole lot of them, the GM may assign them Villain Points. Winning narration does not have to be all-or-nothing. If your diplomat wins narration against twenty armed guards, you do not have to slaughter them all with your briefcase. Instead consider a daring escape, a dignified surrender, or the threat of reprisal from your employers.
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Antagonists: For numbers of foes less than that listed, do not use Villain Points. Note: breaking down the opposition into smaller groups is the equivalent of giving them Villain Points. A strong opposing black-ops team of five people can be given 1 VP each and tackled one at a time, or given about 10 VP and handled all together. Genetechnologies Forces: ● Guards: 1 VP for every 6 guards. ● Ultramercenaries: 1 VP each. ● Fast-talking diplomat: 1 VP each. Armageddon Industries Forces: ● Armed citizenry: 1 VP for every 10 people ● Guards: 1 VP for every 4 guards ● With mechanized assault craft: 3 VP each. Coalition of Sentient Races Forces: ● Soldiers: 1 VP for every 5 guards ● With starfighters: 3 VP each. Assorted Others: ● Inuuel Empire Magi: 1 VP per 2 magi ● Aegis Corp Enhancement Suits: 4 VP each. ● Valorian-trained hacker: 1 VP per 2 hackers For space combat, treat individual starfighters as normal opponents (one VP per several fighters), and give capital ships half a dozen VP or more.

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Adventure Hooks:
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Character Sheet Name: ___________________________ Player: ___________________________ Species: Class: Equipment: Personal hero points: Hero Points   

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Go take over a planet or a colony. Explore a newly-discovered life-bearing planet, or perhaps one that isn’t life-bearing but that someone else wants. First Contact with a new species. Retrieve/steal the MacGuffin from Location X. Guard the MacGuffin. Create a MacGuffin. For example, you could gather parts for better tesser drive, steal diagrams to build fastmaturing AI or other such things. The MacGuffin you have is the wrong one. Someone’s stolen it from under your nose. Go steal it back. Your employers are considering a particular course of action in the next sector over. Information must be gathered. Join the Renaissance freedom fighters, and work against one of the megacorporations to push them out of an area or take them down completely. Someone is coming to conquer your planet. Are you going to join them or stop them? You're all being blackmailed by the same person. Remove your employer's enemies. The means are up to you, as long as you can't be traced back. Retrieve a runaway Ultramercenary. Traditional alien menace from beyond our galaxy.
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Written by Colin Fredericks. CC-BY-NC 3.0 License.
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