One thing which can be very unsatisfying in an investigative role playing game about the paranormal, the cosmic, the profoundly non-human, is a lack of results from scientific analysis.
If a player chooses a character who is a chemist, a biologist, a physicist, etc., they have as much right to fruitful scientific research as the tough character has to punch people, the shooty character to shoot stuff, and so forth.
Behind the screen I know the armor value, hit points, POW, etc. of the bad guys and monsters, but what do I know about the biology, biochemistry, and anatomy of the monsters themselves? Once the player characters have defeated the threat though the use of punching, shooting, and magic, what does the scientist do? They collect samples and bring them to their lab.
What is their reward? “It’s an unknown protein,” “The musculature is very unusual,” “It’s the scale of an animal you can’t identify” are not gratifying answers–in fact they’re simply unfair. Subsequent evidence which proves to be identical to previous samples may help in solving the problem, but it still yields no reward for playing the scientist character.
I did a couple of Google searches: first involving blood, the other cellular structure.Continue reading