Although CoC implements a room based system, I’m using the CS source as a base to create a linear story but have the players be given the option to choose how they want to go about their adventure. The story I wrote that I’m converting has the main character make a series select a straight path or take detours along the way that leads up to the storyline to make it longer and open up a broad selection to end tasks. For instance:
Malak, the Survivalist, is given a S.P.E.C.I.A.L system like you would see in Fallout 3 but the Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intellegence and Agility play a bigger factor in terms of opening up scenes and successful completion of certain tasks geared for that specific build. Say I have a high Intelligence status, the scenes would display the possible scenes you have the option of using. #1 Prepare traps around a castle to prevent a government coup from swarming the outskirts of the fortress. #2 Train imperial soldiers to use their weapons more effectively and utilize special Walsh Siege crushing tactics to prevent enemies from entering the main gates and the surrounding of the fortress. Or #3 Prepare the imperial soldiers for a defensive strategy that would allow the enemies to enter the castle but capture them and use them as hostages for a foreign delegation. But this is just one instance of using but one Stats, if you have other Stats that match the criteria, they would also prompt up their own options of the approach such as Charisma which allows a emissary and negotiation approach to the coup. This grants multiple outcomes of the battle that you will be apart of.
And when i say that your personas ultimately change the entirety of the game, i meant it. If you were to play as Krieg, the bloodthirsty psychopath, you would have different actions to this battle than you would as a Survivalist. If the Psychopath has a 10 Intelligence, he would be give: #1 Prepare the medieval war machines for combat, take the weaklings out from afar! #2 Band the marauders from the tribe clans you united earlier to help defend their lands from the ensuing civil war and fight within the castle. #3 Strike fear into the hearts of your foes by crucifying live hostages on crosses as a warning to prevent entering the castle. This is not a death or gore scene, just living people tied to poles on the castle walls. However, if you have a high enough Insanity meter this scene can change to where they would be killed if foes approached the castle. The Insanity meter is something else I’ve been working on for the Psychopath to allow Bad Ending to scenes that would normally work in your favor but they turn sour and have mixed results. Charisma scenes for Krieg would be summed up as: #1 Die or Surrender, #2 Join the Horde, or #3 No Mercy for the Meek, send in the troops!
After your decisions, the choices on your approach affect the overall game mechanics. Malak the Survivalist used landmines to fend off the coup and the soldiers now know how to use mines and make their own in case they would need them later. Having helped the government with the coup, you can persuade the King to grant you leniency for your “witchcraft” and possibility recruit a small group of soldiers who look up to you as a formidable leader. You gained followers and you can make your own Mercenary Band who will follow your orders in martyrdom. The consequence of this is that you just helped an aristocracy gain favor and power over other countries vying for control, they know how to make mines which is a major disadvantage for the other countries and the people you helped will change the course of history in the upcoming power play. After sometime with your Mercenaries, you can return to that Faction and destroy anyone with that knowledge of weaponry and absorb their country and make it your own, effectively liberating the country and turning it into your own kingdom if you so choose. Alternatively, you can use other Stats that change this outcome and the story shifts into a different fashion:
You don’t help the government, you instead watch as the coup take the castle and allowed history to play out as it should be and kept the balance of the timeline. Having kept this balance, the history of that country will either succumb to another country and form the Hapsburg Empire or they are removed from history and be remembered as a footnote of what could have been. Hapsburgs are allowed to become part of the old world and will become another obstacle for you the meddle in when the time comes. Choose to meet with the Hapsburgs later, the same Stats will show up and you can decide their fate and your approach again with the freedom of choice and whatever resources you’ve picked up since your last encounters from the previous kingdom.
It’s a slow pace game but the possibilities are endless, worthy of any reader and storyteller.