As a reminder:
At 12:01 AM, Pacific Standard Time, this very night, I will post a “Start Your Engines… GO!” post in a new Signup thread. The first five people who respond with some form of “I’m in!” or “Sign me up!” or “I’m the Ayatollah of Rock-n-Rolla!” (or whatever) are in. The sixth is put on the waitlist. Four hours later, at 4:00 AM PST, we do it again: I post “GO!” and the next five who post are in, the sixth waitlisted. And again at 8:00 AM, and 12:00 noon, and 4:00 PM, and 8:00 PM, and finally for the last time at 12:01 AM Saturday. The idea is to allow the same opportunity to get in, no matter what timezone you’re in. Of course, everyone can try all six opportunities if they want (including the previously waitlisted), but you knew the job was dangerous when you took it. If, during the first two Rounds of the game, a player flakes out and doesn’t play their turn before the deadline more than once, a waitlistee from their same 4-hour time window will take their place.
Once you’re in, you’ll get PM’d a link to a Google Docs form wherein you enter your BBS username, your Character Name, the Year, Make, and Model of the vehicle you’ve essentially become, and your Class (Scout, Escort, Mule, or Mechanic), and away we go.
Class descriptions are in order. You can pick any pre-electronic-ignition vehicle you want (even fictitious ones as long as they're essentially analogous to pre-1975 internal-combustion passenger vehicles: no hovercrafts or atomic-powered Chryslus Corvegas, please! Gasoline is an important part of the game economy.), keeping in mind that your vehicle must logically fit into one of the four Classes.
Description: small, agile, fast. Two- or four-wheel-drive, max engine displacement 5.8 liters. Medium firepower, light armor (heavier armor upgrades will slow you down), high speed, low torque, high maneuverability. Medium Hit Points to begin. Gas tank capacity: 10 gallons. Fuel Mileage: 40 mpg.
Description: medium to very large. Two- or four-wheel-drive, no max engine displacement. High firepower, medium armor (upgrades won't slow you as much as it would Scouts), medium speed, medium torque, medium maneuverability. High HP to begin. Gas tank capacity: 20 gallons. Fuel Mileage: 20 mpg.
Description: medium to very large. Four-wheel-drive (conversions permitted), no max engine displacement. Medium-High FP, Very high AR, low SP, very high TQ, low MV. Very high HP to begin. Can carry twice as many Inventory items as a Scout. Gas tank capacity: 40 gallons. Fuel Mileage: 10 mpg.
Description: Any vehicle, any size, any engine displacement. Low FP, low AR, low SP, low TQ, low MV. Relatively low HP to begin. Gas tank capacity: 50 gallons. Fuel Mileage: 10 mpg. Can perform repairs, and gets 75% discount on parts from merchants. CAN READ. (Other Classes can not. This will be to their sorrow, unless they're friendly to a Mechanic.)
Your vehicle determines your class, and your class determines what you’ll be able to do, at least at first. Somebody wants to be a Lotus, they’d better be happy starting off as a Scout. Somebody else wants to be The Last Of The V8 Interceptors (that is, a 1973 Ford Falcon XB GT “Pursuit Special”), they have a bit more latitude at first. Blazer’s Blazer is happiest as a Mule, but can also be an Escort or Mechanic, though it’ll never fly as a Scout. Mechanics seem particularly wimpy and slow, but they can repair themselves cheap (free labor, 75% discount on parts), sell repairs to other Drivers for fat profits, and they can read. There will be many signs up ahead, some warning of pitfalls, others pointing the way toward stashes of loot. Mechanics get these signs sent to them by PM, and they can share that info with whomever they deem appropriate. Everyone else can see there’s a sign, but won’t know what it says unless a Mechanic clues them in.
Mechanics are valuable allies.
Mules will spend much of the travel time between rounds chained to the Ark (what does that mean? You'll see, but it won't affect your gameplay appreciably), but can detach themselves at will to engage in side-missions and combat. If a vehicle’s stats rise to that of another Class and the Driver would like to change Class, they may make that request. Becoming a Mechanic midgame requires special circumstances. Certain missions will be Class-specific. All Classes will have exclusive things to do.
Saturday morning we will have rolled all your stats and we will present you with those results and your first missions in the Round One thread. Your choices must be made and posted in that thread before 8:00 PM PST on Sunday evening. You are enthusiastically encouraged to be as creative and idiosyncratic as possible in your presentation of your character/vehicle, your backstory (which only you know, after all), and your choices, but we ask that your stats and purchases and upgrades and mission choices are presented in a relatively standardized format somewhere easy to see in your post. And you will be PM’d a link to a short Google Docs form where you plug in that same data (username, upgrades, purchases, mission choices).
Keep the shiny side up, if you have a shiny side.