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MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

This is where the issue becomes problematic. For use in a fantasy game' date=' I think that's the right benchmark - we want the PC's able to move into "legendary" status, not be outclassed and overshadowed by what are, ultimately, "just" NPC's. [/quote']

 

Legends that are geared to the mid-point of PCs careers (tier 2, below) are probably the most useful, dramatically speaking, as they can first play the role of mentor or role-model to the PCs; then later as peers, rivals, and competitors; and finally as underlings who the PCs have grown to trust and respect through their interaction.

 

I just picked two legends that would likely be on the two most distant points of the spectrum. I don’t think that a unified power level is all that helpful in discussions for the legends; there’s no reason that Sir Kay (King Arthur’s foster brother) needs be as powerful as Lancelot, for example.

 

I think a better way would be to tier the legends based on their combat ability (which, frankly, is probably the most relevant ability). Say have three tiers: one being as powerful as characters could ever possibly be themselves, another at the level where most characters find their stride as legends in their own right, and a third for characters that are about as powerful as a starting PC, but may have significant specialized skills.

 

So we might see something like this:

 

Tier one: Arthur, Lancelot, Fionn, Hercules, Guan Yu, Merlin

Tier two: Gawain, Galahad and most other Knights of the Round Table; Samson; Ali Baba; Robin Hood; Peter Pan; John Henry; Most Fairy Lords; Aladdin; Sinbad; Jason; Liu Bei and other principles in Romance of the Three Kingdoms; Cu Chulainn

Tier three: Sir Kay, Johnny Appleseed, Scheherazade

 

Obviously that list would be open to interpretation and leeway. I mean, it’s totally debatable whether or not Cu Chulainn has more or less martial prowess than King Arthur, just to cite one case.

 

In terms of actual power, I’d assume that these legends are most relevant to Fantasy Hero. Since the baseline points for Fantasy Hero is about 175+50, or 225 pts gross, and the average character might be assumed to earn 100 XP over a year of weekly gaming sessions, then I’d build the tier 3 characters w/ about 225 pts or less (but with “bonus” points for their fields of noncombat expertise), tier 2 characters w/ ~325 pts, and tier 1 characters w/ 425 pts or more. Of course, that’s just a rough outline and powerful tier 2 characters might approach tier 1 levels.

 

Also, I mentioned Johnny Appleseed because it’d be cool to have some American legends. There aren’t too many: Appleseed, John Henry, the Lone Ranger, and Tonto are the only ones that come immediately to mind (assuming we limit ourselves to legends set before 1900).

 

A valid point, but the legends mentioned to date are combat-capable. Johnny Appleseed wasn't a legend for combat abilities, and could certainly possess legendary level agriculture skills.

 

I think there is a place for legends that are not combat monkeys.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

In terms of actual power' date=' I’d assume that these legends are most relevant to Fantasy Hero. Since the baseline points for Fantasy Hero is about 175+50, or 225 pts gross, and the average character might be assumed to earn 100 XP over a year of weekly gaming sessions, then I’d build the tier 3 characters w/ about 225 pts or less (but with “bonus” points for their fields of noncombat expertise), tier 2 characters w/ ~325 pts, and tier 1 characters w/ 425 pts or more. Of course, that’s just a rough outline and powerful tier 2 characters might approach tier 1 levels.[/quote']

 

While I'd agree the book is most likely a Fantasy Hero book if aimed at any one genre, a lot of mythic characters show up alongside comic book Supers. Hercules with 450 points (a bit higher than your 425, so in the ballpark) would be a starting Super, which seems reasonable for a Great Hero of Myth, but even then, a Champions version and a Fantasy Hero version will likely look very different.

 

Also' date=' I mentioned Johnny Appleseed because it’d be cool to have some American legends. There aren’t too many: Appleseed, John Henry, the Lone Ranger, and Tonto are the only ones that come immediately to mind (assuming we limit ourselves to legends set before 1900). [/quote']

 

Less history = less legends. I see no reason to exclude (non-copywritten) US legends. Davy Crockett; Wild Bill Hickock; Buffalo Bill; Jesse James; the Earp Brothers - you could likely have a Wild West section of Legendary Heroes (Steve - no drooling on the computer).

 

I think there is a place for legends that are not combat monkeys.

 

Absolutely - they just don't get compared to combat monkeys for their status. Don't we have benchmarks for "legendary" skill levels as well?

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

By that I mean both the psychology and quirks of the deities as well as how they interact with each other. I think a discussion of ways the various pantheons would/could interact. To me there is plenty of things to discuss to help make a more coherent setting IF having multiple pantheons coexist. (like if each pantheon has a lord of the dead...how can each be the ruler of hell/sheol/hades/paradise etc).

I think this is important to explain (unless that was already in MH). Even if now there is only one religion/pantheon active, they had to compete with each other at lesat on some point of their existence as religions tended to replace each other.

And of course "only one Pantheon survives until" beg the question what happened to the others and would limits player choices ("But I wanted to play an avatar of Loki"). In fact this could be something not touched onto (in much detail), since fantasy tends to be local/regional, not global as the Supers Setting.

 

Whether the stats are presented (or used) as "This is the deity in full glory" or "This is the avatar which typically is used by the deity to interact with the mortal world, and reflects only a tiny fraction of the true grandeur and power of the actual being" is irrelevant (I can easily switch between the two should I so desire), but the stats are important.

 

The tough balancing act is making them credible (ie sufficiently powerful) as deities without making them so powerful as to be useless (ie they cannot interact meaningfully with the characters anyway). As has been pointed out by others above, these powerful beings seem to be at a level competitive with (but not overwhelming to) Supers, so that's the rough point base (or at least CV/Defense/DC guidelines) I'd aim for - knowing that the Pantheon Head will be more powerful, and a fringe demigod less powerful.

In a fantasy setting you could build a Hercules and most monsters on 300 points (low powered), a normal God on 400 points (superpowered) and one of the big 3 (Zeus, Hades, Poseidon) on 500 and leave Very-high Powered to Cosmically for things like Typhoon (who in some interpretions scared the entire Olympian Pantheon away from Mt. Olympus).

 

I also do not envy Mr. Long for having to stat out deities, but at lesat he can decide on what level/points he writes them up in general.

 

I think a better way would be to tier the legends based on their combat ability (which' date=' frankly, is probably the most relevant ability). Say have three tiers: one being as powerful as characters could ever possibly be themselves, another at the level where most characters find their stride as legends in their own right, and a third for characters that are about as powerful as a starting PC, but may have significant specialized skills.[/quote']

Then you are one of the people who can't figure out how Batman and Superman can be build on the same amount of points.

Depending on the player and the GM, these super specialised skills can be way more important than Achilles or Hercules level fighting ability.

 

I'd say all legends and heroes should be written up at the same points and all gods at the same points. Diversifiying their power level could be left as job for the respective GM when adapting them for their specific campaign.

 

Regarding the "Legendary Hero" Question:

I personally do not plan to buy either one right now (no specific interest as of yet), but I think two books would be better. Not because of the size, but because I always considered legendary Heroes (even those that are half-gods) to be distinct from the gods/religion of their time.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

(haven't read thread, responding to Steve's first two posts)

 

I would love to see a Legendary Hero book covering the non-Deity legends of the world in more detail along side Mythic Hero covering the pantheons. I think there's enough material for both, and gamers in general would use both. My couple of coins on the topic.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Then you are one of the people who can't figure out how Batman and Superman can be build on the same amount of points.

 

I am? That’s news to me.

 

I don’t see a lot of value in assigning uniform point values to all legends. For one, it closes up design space by limiting the range of points that can be assigned to any given character. By the same token, there’s the threat of making all the characters only useful at specific points in the PCs career. Let’s say, for example, that you set up a rivalry between Gawain and the party, which they resolve, and then start to look for the next rivalry in Lancelot. Well, by all rights Lancelot should be head and shoulders over Gawain, but if they’re built on the same points then you’ll have to modify Lancelot a fair bit to make him a believable step up over Gawain.

 

It is also make-work because the author needs to figure out where all the unused points that are left over go to for lesser characters. I mean, Sir Kay is less competent than King Arthur in every way that really counts, so once you’ve developed Arthur and established his level of proficiency you’d go to Kay and set him up to be largely less competent. Having set up Kay as noticeably weaker than Arthur in key areas, you’ll have a whole bunch of “extra” points for Kay that need to be spent to make the point values uniform. So these points get tossed at a whole bunch of miscellany and suddenly Kay can speak Swedish, or something, simply because he had points that needed to be burnt off.

 

Some characters are simply more competent then others and the way to document this mechanically is through a difference in total points.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

First off -- folx, let's not spend a lot of time and energy discussing "Legendary Hero" here, please. If and when we do that book, there'll be a separate WDYWTS thread. Let's keep this focused on MH, 'kay? ;)

 

 

STEVE: Are these books intended to be directed primarily at a specific genre (most likely Fantasy - that's where the characters derive from)? If so, that's clearly where the benchmarks need to lie.

 

They're not aimed at any specific genre. Different perspectives on gods, ways to use 'em in a campaign, and how they tend to vary from genre to genre are all part of what's covered in Chapter One. The gods are presented consistently throughout the book, and the approach I choose to adopt is made clear so that someone who prefers a different approach will understand what he needs to change.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

One aspect that I'd be curious about is how to approach dealing with a god's followers and contacts.

 

Taking Odin as an example, he could purchase the Asgardians as a group Contact. Sometimes they'll be available to help and sometimes they won't. The two ravens he has could be taken as a pair of Followers, and the valkyries could be taken as a group of Followers. Up to there, I can understand how to apply game mechanics.

 

Then we get to Odin's mortal followers. Are they a large group of Normal Human Followers or a handwaved thing?

 

Would a religion following a god be done as a base? If a kingdom can be done that way using Ultimate Base, it makes sense to me that a religion could be worked up using those rules as well. Some faiths would be small, but others could be vast, sprawling affairs.

 

Has anyone designed a religion or multiple religions that way?

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

On the Demonology thing: I don't see anything too offensive about a writeup for Satan. I think you could even stat up, say, Archangel Michael, without offending too many people, so long as you don't stat out Allah, YHWH, the Trinity, Mary Mother of God, or a bunch of saints.

 

It goes without saying that both of those entities, stat-wise, should be well-capable of kicking the crap out of Dr. D. :D

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

As a feature of each pantheon you plan to have a section on, could we see an organization or alliance chart to understand who would team with whom versus who would fight whom? When we cross-pantheon-play, the gods would distrust or hate gods like their adversaries but trust gods like their allies. It would also be a handy reference for the players to know whom to pray to when Loki messes them over.

Which gods would be willing to help or interfere with humans?

Which god would likely jump in against what other god?

If primary aspects was included also we can sort out who to cross-pray to.

 

Will there be an explanation on why puny humans or even very powerful superhumans can't just go around killing gods? Gods die and are just banished to their homeplane or the entire pantheons will gang up on you. The rule that a pantheons may fight among themselves but are very co-operative and have teamwork specially for the few times they all see a common threat.

 

I remember my youth and a "Monty Hall" who had us encounter Zeus since he enjoyed hunting and killing gods. What a nightmare!!!!!

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

I has probably been covered elsewhere in the thread. I started suffering post-blindness at about page 2. For each God / Pantheon, could we have some discussion about the miracles / magic available to followers / Priests please? Also some info on servitors that are not covered in the bestiary already would be good.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Will there be an explanation on why puny humans or even very powerful superhumans can't just go around killing gods?

 

Absolutely not, because in some settings and stories they can kill them. There'll certainly be some discussion of mortals fighting gods generally, with options and suggestions, but there aren't going to be any hard-and-fast rules that say what you can or can't do. That I'll leave up to the GM. :)

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

For each God / Pantheon, could we have some discussion about the miracles / magic available to followers / Priests please?

 

Where I can quickly and easily do so without taking up much page space, probably. If it would require extra research, no. I have little enough time for this book as it is. ;)

 

 

Also some info on servitors that are not covered in the bestiary already would be good.

 

As I mentioned in my intro post and some later posts, that's certainly going to be part of the book.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

"Will there be an explanation on why puny humans or even very powerful superhumans can't just go around killing gods?

Absolutely not, because in some settings and stories they can kill them. There'll certainly be some discussion of mortals fighting gods generally, with options and suggestions, but there aren't going to be any hard-and-fast rules that say what you can or can't do. That I'll leave up to the GM. "smile.gif

 

Well, a caution on how to run gods and how allowing them to be killed for the GM and stating what complications could occur if such happened. IMHO, turning the PC into an NPC who must take the place of the god forever is a nice consequence so the world will maintain balance.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Yeah, but that kind of stuff should be up to individual GMs running individual worlds. Killing gods is out of place in a superheroes setting, and would seem likely to be extraordinarily difficult in most fantasy settings(let alone pulp or heroic settings). Fantasy adventurers who have attained that level of capability(I'd reckon you'd have to be comparable to an experienced team of superheroes in order to take on even a lesser deity) most likely are headed for "retired PC status" anyway. Killing off a lesser god of evil at the end of a long epic high fantasy campaign(esp. Atlantean Age) doesn't seem too outrageous.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Not having read the whole thread...there are two aproaches you can take:

 

1. Gods as PCs

2. Gods as Mentors/Enemies

 

This being Hero, that breaks down to:

 

1. How to build PC gods

2. How PCs can incorporate the 'fact' of gods into their own character design

 

I'd be inclined to do both :)

 

Hero does not fit well with DnD 'Deities and Demigods' as a template because Hero is not a single world, but building a book of Deities (PC or Patron) and Demigods (PCs) works. Creating a specific system for how divine power interacts with the world (or, this being Hero, several such systems) would be useful. I have lots of ideas, but I am sure you do too.

 

This is an opportunity to introduce non-core elements, if you are inclined to go that way, or build new concepts from existing Hero paradigms.

 

I would think that one of the most important aspects is how gods draw power (presumably a function of number of those who worship/fear/love the deity) and how and why gods distribute power to followers. A number of obvious methods of building that sort of system within Hero obviously present themselves but it may be interesting to think about possible additional characteristics like 'Faith' (possibly some sort of combined END and defence pool) and 'Belief' (possibly some sort of role play based value that helps to determine the amount of diine power a character can channel.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

A number of obvious methods of building that sort of system within Hero obviously present themselves but it may be interesting to think about possible additional characteristics like 'Faith' (possibly some sort of combined END and defence pool) and 'Belief' (possibly some sort of role play based value that helps to determine the amount of diine power a character can channel.

Faith: Endurance Reserve. Recovery might be limited to "Only when praying in a temple".

Belief: Eitehr the AP limit on your Multipower or Required Roll (Power Skill) is mandatory and your Skill Level/ability to overcome AP penalties determiens your maximum.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

I think the most basic questions are:

1. How does the god "hear" the prayers of their worshippers?

2. How do they go about responding to the petitions of their worshippers?

 

It seems like this could even vary by pantheon and sphere of influence/personality of the individual deities.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

In much the same vein as the Johnny Appleseed writeup, how complete will the pantheons be? In the Greco-Roman pantheon, it seems like Demeter and (especially) Hestia (whose classification is inconsistent between sources as a minor or major deity, but she was one of the six siblings, including Zeus, who formed the core of the Olympian deities) tend to get shorted, likely because their portfolios aren't in any way combat or adventure related.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Is the book going to have a section in it showing examples on how to use deities in different genres?

 

Maybe a separate pdf could be made showing how deities interacted with the Champions Universe through the different ages.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Steve, with respect to design philosophy, I do have a question:

In writing up deity powers, are you more partial to multipowers, VPPs, both, or neither? Does it vary according to the power level/sphere of influence(i.e., war god, love god, storm god, etc.) of the deity?

 

I guess I'd like to get a grasp for what would differentiate a "greater god"(or even a pantheon head), mechanically speaking, from a lesser god or demigod. Total points? Stats? Active points? having a greater variety of things they can do with their powers?

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

In writing up deity powers, are you more partial to multipowers, VPPs, both, or neither? Does it vary according to the power level/sphere of influence(i.e., war god, love god, storm god, etc.) of the deity?

 

I guess I'd like to get a grasp for what would differentiate a "greater god"(or even a pantheon head), mechanically speaking, from a lesser god or demigod. Total points? Stats? Active points? having a greater variety of things they can do with their powers?

 

Given the extent, fluidity, and strength of many (if not most) gods' powers, I prefer the VPP approach. The more powerful the god, the larger the VPP, generally speaking (though of course there are exceptions -- Thor, for example, is both powerful and popular, but isn't credited with a lot of "mystic" feats or abilities). Additionally, any "signature" abilities or weapons a god has -- like Zeus's thunderbolts, Thor's hammer, or many gods' noted ability to change shape -- is typically bought separately to emphasize its importance.

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

Once I saw on the front page that this book had a WDYWTS thread up, I came in to see what I could suggest. As it happens, the original plan covers most of what I'd want to see, and further discussion covers nearly all the rest.

 

If the Native American section includes Lakota legends, and Berber mythology is touched on somewhere (the final chapter most likely, though it could be the Greek section), I'll be happy.

 

A discussion (however brief) on how the existence of different pantheons in the same world can be reconciled so that all are true would be welcome. It's a complex and difficult topic, to be sure, and could take an entire book to cover in depth, but a page or so covering the high points would help the world-builders out here.

 

Remember, too, that a sourcebook of this type can be as much good use to novelists, screenwriters, and other fiction writers just as it is for gamers. The latter are the main target group, of course, but the former should get some love too. :)

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Re: MYTHIC HERO: What Do *You* Want To See?

 

I'll second those who think that there's no need to writeup an omnipotent, omniscient being, but that angels, demons, and other of the lesser beings would be good to have. I think the potential for offense turns on whether one represents the material charitably or not. Just as a reminder, there were a number of writeups for some of this kind of material in PA Hero, and I think that was generally well-done. It could be updated and/or revised for wider use in other Hero settings without much trouble. I can think of some very cool Champions adventures flowing from the unleashing of the Four Horsemen and the periodic aid of (Arch)angels in an attempt to put those monsters to rest.

 

 

A second for the Four Horsemen.

 

There was an article about a mythology that seemed to be composed by homeless children in Miami--it was linked to in this thread but the article seems to be gone. Perhaps someone with more time and better search-fu can find it.

 

Hope that helps.

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