The Terminator RPG: Quickstart is an introduction to The Terminator RPG. It contains seven pre-made characters, all the essential rules required to play the game and a single scenario for a GM and up to five players to enjoy, with the aim of introducing a group of players to the dark, frightening, and deceitful world of The Terminator.
In The Terminator RPG Quickstart, each player assumes the role of a Resistance Fighter. These ‘characters’ are the personas that will represent the players as they play the game. This section of the Quickstart contains character generation rules, describing the different stats, skills and traits that each character has.
Director’s Note: The Terminator RPG contains a comprehensive list of all the Skills and Traits available for all characters.
The Terminator RPG features Nightfall Games’ S5S System, first seen in SLA Industries 2nd Edition. The S5S is a d10-based rules system that uses a pool of dice: one Success die, and five Skill dice per player. The more skilled your character is in the task being attempted, the more likely you are to succeed and “succeed big.”
The rules set have been tailored specifically to The Terminator RPG setting. Combat, survival, and investigation are all dealt with in the rules, along with vehicle combat, time travel, and computer hacking, allowing your character to take control of the conflict with unique skills and training. You’ll need all of this and more to take the fight across the timelines and survive.
Where there is violence, there is death. A character’s own health is something which should be regarded as paramount. With Skynet constantly looking to eliminate those who stand for the Resistance, it stands to reason that getting wounded may be something that everyone experiences at some point in time.
Hope Points add a strong cinematic feel to games of The Terminator RPG. Given the cinematic heritage of the franchise, it seems only right that the players are able to recreate those awe-inspiring moments that make for unforgettable action. These feats are made possible through a character’s Hope Points – a pool of available points that can be spent during the game session.
From the most basic 80’s company mainframe to the advanced neural networks of Skynet and MIR, computers are all but omnipresent in our world. Those remembering Judgment Day tend to see them as the root of all evil; a threat to be eradicated at any cost. Nevertheless, some choose to fight fire with fire, using their wits and technical know-how to turn the tables on the machines.
These rules simulate extended hacking attempts, where the hacker infiltrates large networks to reach and exploit hidden subroutines, all while trying to avoid triggering a security response. To resolve simple hacks (i.e. hacking an ATM or cracking a simple password), use a normal Skill Test instead. As a general rule, if this system would slow the game and detract from the fun, sideline it. If it creates tension and the rest of the party has stuff to do while the hacker struts their stuff go for it!
Various weapons are available to members of the Resistance, be they scavenged from the remains of former military organisations or stolen from Skynet facilities. The following items represent the weapons and equipment that the pre-generated characters included with this Quickstart are carrying and are also used for other characters that they may encounter during the course of the game.
This post-Judgment Day mission is designed for 3-5 players. Seven pre-generated characters are provided to be used for this mission.
Starting in a foxhole, under heavy fire, the characters need to fight their way to the wall of the Skynet compound and make their way inside. Once within, negotiating the deadly security measures designed to prevent access to the time displacement device, is likely to be extremely difficult. But it must be done, somehow—at least one of the team has to make it back to the past. Victory or failure is entirely binary in this mission. Those who survive the waves of deadly attacks and pre-programmed automated responses must send themselves back to 1985 to try and prevent Skynet’s next insidious assault on the survival of humanity.