Split, cut, divided…

Split

The Movie

Split is an amazing movie written and directed by M. Night Shyamalan and based upon the real story of Billy Milligan, a man who suffered from the dissociative identity disorder and sentenced to prison after the rape and murder of 3 students.

The main actor is James McAvoy and his performance is very excellent in this movie. It is surely hard to play so many and different characters but he succeeded in it, well done!

Of course this is a movie, so the mental disorder is amplified with nearly superhuman abilities for Kevin, the main character. But it is still interesting, a very realistic movie would have been boring.

The other actors are also good but it is obviously a movie built around its main character. You watch him evolves and switches from a personality to another, waiting anxiously for the next step toward total madness.

Split is the kind of movie you want to watch if you like horror, psychological atmosphere, thrillers…
It is not so bloody, not disgusting and doesn’t rely on the devilish jump scare scene.

I have to admit it is one of my favorite movie. I have watched a lot of movies and it becomes hard to be surprised, but this one succeeded. It also made me want to learn more about mental disorders which is a fascinating subject, sometimes terrifyng.


Savage Worlds

I tried Everyone is John during a convention and really loved it. Very fun light role-playing game with an unusual premise: one character and several players.

Because I am a great fan of Savage Worlds, I naturally wanted to create a SW Everyone is John to use the great rules of Pinnacle with this really fun idea.

I came up with two ideas, either a player has several character sheets for the same character, or several players have their own character sheet for a unique and shared character.

Split SW

The idea is that a unique character has several personalities, always for a fast an furious game.
So each player has a reference character sheet (the core personality), 1 close personality, 2 distant, and the dark or hidden one. Of course you can add close and/or distant personalities, but I advise you to have only one dark/hidden one.

To avoid absurd characters, there are some limitations for the Attributes, Skills, Edges and Hindrances.

  • Several character sheets rules

You first create the core personality from which the others will evolve.

You can download here a simple character sheet to easily manage your 5 personalities: Split SW Character Sheet

The close one

This personality is often the second one, the first new personality which split from the core one.
You only can switch 4 Skill points.

The two distant ones

These ones are really autonomous but not totally different from the core personality

Between the different Attributes, you can only switch 1 point from the reference character sheet.
As for the Skills, you can switch 4 points.
You can switch one Edge and one Hindrance.

The dark/hidden one

The dark/hidden personality is like the beast in Split or Tyler Durden in Fight Club. This personality wants to get rid of the others and to possess entirely the host’s body.

You have to switch 3 Attribute points, 8 Skill points and half of your Edges and Hindrances.

  • Switch personalities

Your emotional and mental stability is essential to avoid personalities struggle, but you can’t always avoid anxious or violent situations.

Every time your character faces a violent or an anxious situation, a situation related to an Hindrance, suffers one wound, get a fatigue point or lose a Spirit opposed roll, you have to make a Switch (Spirit) roll.
With a critical failure, the DM chooses the less appropriate personality for the situation 😎
With a failure, you pick at random one of your character sheet after having removed the active one.
With a success, you can choose which personality you want to play. The active one is not a choice.
With a raise, you choose whether you switch or not to another personality, and if yes, which one.

  • Personalities advancement

The advancement is a motive to fight for the personalities, they have to get the best from the host’s body.

You will have to make an opposed Spirit roll between your personalities.
With the consent of your DM, you give a bonus of +2 to the personality you have played the most and +1 to another one which was important.

Each personality gets a standard advancement per rank. Between these ranks, this is war!

The winning personality gets the advancement, that’s it, no sharing.
So there is a lot of chance to failed in creating a skilled character because with a lot of personalities, you may scatter your points between them. Of course you may also have a personality with an iron will (Spirit 8/10/even 12), so she gets the majority of advancement, but if you lose control and play with a weak one, good luck!

With these rules you can create a group of  mad and insane characters, or add a crazy one in a group of normal adventurers.
Remember Baldur’s Gate II : Shadows of Amn, you hero was half-human / half-demon. You can create such a character in which his hidden/dark personality is a devil trying to take possession of him.


Everyone is John SW

Here are some rules to play Everyone is John with Savage Worlds rules.

Each player has a character sheet. He can create the characters he wants, no limitations.

  • I want to play John!

Every timeJohn faces a violent or an anxious situation, a situation related to an Hindrance of the current character sheet, suffers one wound, get a fatigue point or lose a Spirit opposed roll, it is time to bet to know which personality will take control of John.

In Everyone is John, the players have to bet to know who will play John.
We use Savage Worlds rules:
– The initiative represents the war to reach brain between the personalities (the different character sheets, one per player). Each player keeps his card, they go from 2 to AS. Joker = instant victory over the others.
– Then each player makes a Spirit roll (and can use a benny), with a success he adds +1 to the card, so a 5 is now a 6, and each raise also gives +1.
Bennies can also be used in this bet. A benny gives +2 to the card rank.

To keep the game balanced, I advise you to avoid a character with edges for initiative, who is also lucky and with a good Spirit. These 3 characteristics should be split between 3 different characters.

  • John’s advancement

All the personalities get an advancement so the players can have fun when playing John, no matter the time they controlled him.

With Savage Worlds rules we can play a more complex Multiple Personality Disorder game.

I don’t know how far such a character can get, especially in a game with a lot of fights, but surely it is something to try.

Some general ideas: a tormented knight who endured too many battles / a powerful wizard who got possessed by several entities / an explorer who became crazy after touching an unknow artifact on a lonely planet…

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