Harper Cell

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The Harper cell is the base unit of operation for Harpers. They consist of a gathering of talented individuals, under the direction of a Brightcandle.

  • Monthly Checks: Connections (Cache, Entanglements), Watchers (Concerns), Allies (Problems), Security (Locating the Cell [Hearing About It All], Concerns)


Ranks: Aspects are ranked, from 0 to 5.

  • Rank 0: 0 Investment.
  • Rank 1: 1 Investment.
  • Rank 2: 3 Investment.
  • Rank 3: 10 Investment.
  • Rank 4: 25 Investment.
  • Rank 5: 50 Investment.

Complications: The higher an Aspect is ranked, the likelier it is to cause difficulties for the cell. There is a percentage chance each month of generating a Complication from any given Aspect.

Building Aspects

Each Aspect has a Downtime Action associated with it, the "Building [Aspect]" action. This is a Skill check for each of them, with an expenditure of gold equal to [Current Rating x10] gold pieces. Success generates additional Investment for that Aspect, while failure can often erode Investment. The DC for this test is equal to 10 + (Rank x2). The results determine the change in that Aspect's Investment:

  • Failure by 5+: lose 2 Investment
  • Failure: lose 1 investment
  • Success: gain 1 Investment
  • Success by 5+: gain 2 Investment


This Aspect represents the cell's involvement with the rest of the Harper faction. This is political, but it is also ideological and even magical to some extent: a high Connections rating provides access to certain Harper secrets that those who do not adhere well to its traditions and goals cannot access.

  • Building Connections: Wisdom check. May add proficiency bonus if the cell has completed a successful Harpers mission in the last month.
  • Favors & Contacts (Harpers): If the PCs accumulate any Favors or Contacts specifically tied to the Harpers, they may "spend" these to gain an additional point of investment in Connections, trading one Favor or Contact for a +1 Connections investment.
Rank Description Assistance Cache Cell Actions Boons Entanglements
0 Unconnected. Little to no connections to the rest of the Harpers. The cell does not have a Brightcandle who oversees them. 10% chance per month that Harpers launch an investigation into the group. None None None None None
1 Minor. Very light connections; a Brightcandle oversees them, but has doubts about their adherence to Harper ideals and protocols. Disadvantage Disadvantage None None 10% per month
2 Moderate. Acceptable connections, with a Brightcandle solidly invested in them. They also know a few of the non-cell Harpers in the area, or those who wander through it occasionally. Normal Disadvantage None None 15% per month
3 Notable. Solid connections, with an enthusiastic Brightcandle overseeing them. The cell is also acquainted with many of the non-cell and wandering Harpers of the region. They have also made the acquaintance of at least one other Brightcandle in their region. Normal Normal 1/mission None 15% per month
4 Major. Strong connections, with a very favorable Brightcandle. They know most of the other non-cell Harpers and multiple Brightcandles in the area. The cell has been introduced and given the means to contact their Brightcandle's Wise Owl superior in the faction. Advantage Normal 1/mission 1 Charm 20% per month
5 Integral. Central ties to the Harpers, with a Brightcandle overseeing them. The cell know other Brightcandles, and of their cells (able to recognize them on sight, though the reverse is likely not true). They know multiple Wise Owls, and are in contact with at least one of the High Harpers. Advantage Advantage 2/mission 1 Charm + 1 Blessing 25% per month


This Aspect measures the expansiveness of the cell's Watcher Network. Made up of folk who simply keep an eye out for things of interest to the Harpers, and are paid coin and favors for their attention, the Watchers are a key role in how Harpers operate. Harpers are also taught the signs, codes, and songs that they need to use to signal to any Watchers nearby that they need help. Generally, they need only perform one of these, and the Watcher will approach the Harper when they can do so covertly. They can also be the source of unwelcome entanglements, as Watchers are promised assistance in times of need.

  • Building Watchers: Charisma (Persuasion or Performance) check.
  • Favors & Contacts: If the PCs accumulate any Favors or Contacts, they may "spend" these to gain an additional point of investment in Watchers, trading one Favor or Contact for a +1 Watchers investment.
Rank Network + Cost Rumors Reports Summons Concerns
0 No Network. The cell has no informants. No cost per month. None None 0% 0%
1 Minor Network. A few rag-tag individuals. 1 gp/month. 1 Disadvantage 20% 10%
2 Moderate Network. A handful of keen-eyed and dedicated folk. 3 gp/month 1 Normal 25% 15%
3 Notable Network. A robust and aware collection of informants. 5 gp/month 2 Normal 30% 15%
4 Major Network. A strong collection, made up of dozens of informants. 10 gp/month. 3 Advantage 35% 20%
5 Vast Network. A large, busy network; very little of note escapes them. 20 gp/month. 5 Advantage 40% 25%


This Aspect measures the number and nature of a cell's local allies. Unlike Watchers, allies do more than simply focus on information: they lend influence and funding to the cell. Allies believe in what the Harpers do, and wish to help, although they can be a source of problems.

  • Building Allies: Charisma (Persuasion or Performance) check.
  • Favors & Contacts: If the PCs accumulate any Favors or Contacts tied to important or influential folk, they may "spend" these to gain an additional point of investment in Allies, trading one Favor or Contact for a +1 Allies investment.
Rank Established Allies Influence Funding Ally Problems
0 No Allies. The cell has no allies. None None 0%
1 Minor Allies. The cell has an ally of some degree of power. This is an individual.
* Choose one type of check: Influence or Funding. The cell may make that type of check at Disadvantage.
None* None* 10%
2 Moderate Allies. The cell has a few scattered allies who believe in their work. Choose up to three individuals.
* Choose one type of check: Influence or Funding. The cell may make that type of check as normal.
Disadvantage* Disadvantage* 15%
3 Notable Allies. The cell has a respectable group of allies. Choose one organization, and up to five individuals. Normal Normal 15%
4 Major Allies. The cell has a robust group of allies. Choose three organizations, and up to eight individuals.
* Choose one type of check: Influence or Funding. The cell may make that type of check at Advantage.
Normal* Normal* 20%
5 Numerous Allies. The cell has an impressive array of allies. Choose up to ten organizations, and as many as a dozen individuals of note. Advantage Advantage 25%

Allies Check

The assistance check is a simple d20 check, with a bonus equal to the cell's Alllies rank. A cell may choose the results from lower on the assistance check list if they wish. This prevents the accumulation of the Increasing Penalty point, as noted below.

  • Increasing Penalty: If the test results in successful Influence or Funding of some kind, inflict a -1 penalty to subsequent Allies checks with that Ally. This is both cumulative with future rolls and remains until it goes away in one of three ways.
    • Investment Increase: When another point of Investment is added to the Allies trait, reduce the current penalty by one.
    • Giving It Time: For each month that passes that the cell does not attempt to call on Allies (i.e. does not make an Allies Check), reduce the current penalty by one.
    • Rank Increase: When the Allies rank increases or decreases, reset the penalty to 0.


This Aspect stands in opposition to all the other Aspects. It indicates the degree of secrecy, security, and operational paranoia the cell maintains. Security can ensure that it is more difficult for a cell's enemies to find them, but it can also make it harder to keep the other Aspects strong: secretive cells sometimes must sacrifice outside Harper connections, robust Watcher Networks, and extensive Allies in order to keep themselves safe.

  • Building Security: Intelligence check. May add proficiency bonus if proficient in Deception, Investigation, or Stealth.
  • Favors & Contacts: If the PCs accumulate any Favors or Contacts, they may "spend" these to gain an additional point of investment in Security, trading one Favor or Contact for a +1 Security investment.
Rank Security Safehouses Locating the Cell Security Concerns
0 No Security. The cell has neither security nor secrecy: for all intents and purposes, they operate out in public, and nearly anyone who knows of them can find them. 0 Automatic 0%
1 Minor Security. The cell's security is scarce and only somewhat effective. up to 2 (Rank 1 max) Advantage 10%
2 Moderate Security. The cell takes some precautions, which tend to be of some benefit. up to 4 (Rank 2 max) Normal 15%
3 Notable Security. The cell's security and secrecy are solid, allowing them to operate freely and effectively. up to 6 (Rank 3 max) Normal 15%
4 Major Security. The cell's precautions are such that even their allies sometimes lose track of them. Other Traits cannot go above 4. up to 8 (Rank 4 max) Disadvantage 20%
5 Abundant Security. The cell is ghost-like in their ability to remain out of reach. Other Traits cannot go above 3. up to 10 (Rank 5 max) Disadvantage 25%