Tick Tock Men: A plot device for New World of Darkness


Another Freebie today. Initially conceived as an Abyssal plague, feel free to adapt this to your game as you see fit.

Tick Tock Men

The Tick Tock Men are, in themselves, the remnants of human beings transformed into clockwork automata via an injury sustained from contact with another Tick Tock Man. Trapped within their bodies as they slowly change, mind and soul slowly go insane. The soul weakens, losing its grasp until it has but the slenderest hold on its final, unfeeling form. Trapped and unable to move on, drawn on to sustain the Tick Tock Man’s existence, the soul withers and atrophies over the next decade or so until, finally, it becomes hollow – nothing more than a means for filtering and drawing down Essence, Mana, or whatever other kind of esoteric power it can.

The mind tends to be unable to weather this kind of treatment. Fixed first in the horror of a body slowly becoming inhuman, then in an impossible, clockwork form with no biological imperatives, no sensation or vocal chords, sooner or later every single one goes insane. Sleeper minds simply can’t take it, and even the minds of the Awakened can eventually fold under such conditions.

The Tick Tock Men cannot speak. Once the transformation is complete they are voiceless, and the only senses left to them are sight and sound. They cannot eat. They cannot feel. They have, initially, a burning need to find help, to make others understand their situation, but over time this becomes simply a need to be understood (or, at least, feel understood) on some level. They are thus prone to the command of anyone who displays some kind of sympathy for their condition. And, of course, as so few have a clue that the Tick Tock Men even exist, let alone the nature of their suffering, it’s rare they find such sympathy.

All Tick Tock Men in the final stage are to all purposes identical. They have the appearance of the body they infect, and retain a modicum of the mind’s knowledge, but in physical and supernatural abilities they don’t deviate one iota from each other.

Tick Tock Man: Final Stage

Virtue: Hope, Vice: Wrath

Willpower: 3, Humanity: 1, Essence: 10

Intelligence 2, Wits 2, Resolve 2

Strength 4, Dexterity 2, Stamina 5

Presence 1, Manipulation 1, Composure 1

Athletics 5, Brawl 3, Stealth 4, Weaponry 3

*If a Tick-Tock Man retains any Mental or Social Skill from its human existence, it may not be higher than 1.

Size: 5, Speed: 9

Initiative Mod: 3, Defence: 2, Armour: 2

Health: 10


Ambidextrous: A Tick Tock Man’s brain no longer prioritises one side of the body.


Clasp: A Tick Tock Man’s mechanical grasp is so tight that it inflicts Lethal rather than Bashing damage. Str + Brawl.

Drain: Tick Tock Men can only refuel by taking power from other beings or locations which have it. They can steal Essence, Willpower and Mana. All gets converted to Essence on a 1-for-1 basis. Intelligence + Resolve vs. target’s Stamina + Resolve + Supernatural Tolerance (e.g. Gnosis).  Requires physical contact.

Infect: Should a Tick Tock Man break an opponent’s skin with its nails or teeth, it will infect the wound. This is a reflexive action, not one under the Tick Tock Man’s control. Roll Essence + 3 (for Savant) vs. Stamina + Resolve + Supernatural Tolerance.

Savant: +3 dice to Infect.

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2 thoughts on “Tick Tock Men: A plot device for New World of Darkness

  1. Darren says:

    These would also be good for the Dr Who RPG. Nice job!

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