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Darren Watts

Golden Age Champions Discussion Thread

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As I understand it, Golden Age characters are alittle one-trick ponies. (Not rhat I mind). So are you going to discuss the use of Power Skill in depth? I could be wrong but even in GA, didn't the Heroes sometimes used a one off power?

 

You know, I didn't specifically. That seems more like a Silver Age trope to me - Golden Age writers were more likely to simply forget what the hero's powers actually were (cf. Green Lantern, who started out able to *control metal.*) I'll certainly put such a piece in SAC when I get to it! dw

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Just do me a favor and don't make the germans too onesided.

I admit that even I as a german can have fun bashing Nazis I hate it when we are displayed as too stereotypical.

 

Thanks

 

(Will back this)

I hope you'll be happy with what I've done- I don't like purely one-dimensional bad guys either (except Totenkopf, and he's a demon.) dw

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Not even a Yengtao-trained fighter from that era, like the Cobra?

Again, you can play any character you want. But there are very few period examples of the pure martial artist, who becomes a trope post Bruce Lee/Shang Chi/Karate Kid. Judomaster is a notable one, but he was created in the 60s. dw

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Also, you DID have characters in the Golden Age who had the whole "went to the mystical east and recieved strange training" ie The Shadow. So Eastern MA's wouldn't be totally out of the realms of possibilities. Even an Asian Martial Artist who escaped from Occupied China during the war. I am sure that would be really uncommon, but not out of the realm of possibility.

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Again, you can play any character you want. But there are very few period examples of the pure martial artist, who becomes a trope post Bruce Lee/Shang Chi/Karate Kid. Judomaster is a notable one, but he was created in the 60s. dw

Of course, the comics of the day did have some racism built into them. Which is why when we did see Martial Artist heroes they were always white. Yes and more 60's than earlier.

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You know, I didn't specifically. That seems more like a Silver Age trope to me - Golden Age writers were more likely to simply forget what the hero's powers actually were (cf. Green Lantern, who started out able to *control metal.*) I'll certainly put such a piece in SAC when I get to it! dw

Np, that was my impression but I can very well be wrong.

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Martial Arts appropriate to a Golden Age Champions campaign for Heros:

Bojutsu (under staff-fighting)

Boxing (modern version)

Capoeira (hispanic heros only)

Commando Training (military only)

Dirty Infighting/Fisticuffs/Cinematic Brawling

Fencing

Generic Martial Arts

"Jailhouse Rock" (jailed criminal background only)

Jujutsu (female characters and small thin men)

Khridoli (Russian background only)

Knifefighting

Lua (Hawaiian background only)

Lucha Libre (hispanics only)

Sambo (Russian background only)

Savate

Stickfighting

Swordfighting

Whipfighting

Wrestling, Greco Roman

Wrestling, "Professional"

Gun Fu

Red In Tooth And Claw (wild man jungle kings and queens only)

 

Forbidden Martial Arts:

Arte Dell'abbracciare (Italy)

Hisardut (golden age predates art)

Jeet Kune Do (golden age predates art)

Jukenjutsu (Japan military)

Kampfringen (Germany)

Karate (Japan)

Kenjutsu (Japan)

Krav Maga (golden age predates art)

Kung Fu (Chinese, they refuse to teach art to the round eyes till after Bruce Lee started to do so)

Kyujutsu (Japan)

Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (golden age predates art)

Naginatajutsu/Sojutsu (Japan)

Ninjutsu (Japan, and "there is no such thing as a Ninja")

Pankration (Italy)

Saijutsu (Japan)

Shurikenjutsu (Japan)

Sumo Wrestling (Japan)

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Also, you DID have characters in the Golden Age who had the whole "went to the mystical east and recieved strange training" ie The Shadow. So Eastern MA's wouldn't be totally out of the realms of possibilities. Even an Asian Martial Artist who escaped from Occupied China during the war. I am sure that would be really uncommon, but not out of the realm of possibility.

 

 

It's an earlier era, but Pulp Hero specifically talks about how Western characters may have Boxing, Dirty Infighting, Fencing, or even Savate, but Eastern martial arts will be the exclusive schtick of a character who has it as part of their background and character archetype.

 

"The Gadgeteer has his Weird Science, the Aviator has his plane, the Masked Crimefighter has his eerie laugh; the Character Raised In The Orient has Martial Arts."

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It's an earlier era, but Pulp Hero specifically talks about how Western characters may have Boxing, Dirty Infighting, Fencing, or even Savate, but Eastern martial arts will be the exclusive schtick of a character who has it as part of their background and character archetype.

 

"The Gadgeteer has his Weird Science, the Aviator has his plane, the Masked Crimefighter has his eerie laugh; the Character Raised In The Orient has Martial Arts."

Yes, I totally agree that Captain Patriot wouldn't have Eastern Martial Arts.

 

It should be an archetype that is available. Heck we have had Chinese in this country since at least after the Civil War. It's very possible to have a Golden Age Asian Superhero. This shouldn't be white centric in what we think is possible. There were also Japanese in this country as well. There are plenty of reasons for there to be a Martial Arts Supers.

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I think the key point is that wuxia type martial artists probably shouldn't be mixed with people like Batman, Wildcat and Black Canary.

 

Of course, there's nothing stopping you from running an all wuxia game in contemporary China, for example.

 

Batman and Black Canary, at least, explicitly used Jiu-jitsu in the Golden Age.

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I think the key point is that wuxia type martial artists probably shouldn't be mixed with people like Batman, Wildcat and Black Canary.

 

Of course, there's nothing stopping you from running an all wuxia game in contemporary China, for example.

 

Batman and Black Canary, at least, explicitly used Jiu-jitsu in the Golden Age.

There is nothing holding Tasha back from playing a heroic golden age aisan hero with as close to wuxia powers the low point cost will allow in an Golden Age Champions campaign also. She simply have to face the fact that everybody will think that her character is the sidekick of the nearest lantern jawed white man hero, and suffer anti-aisan sentiment in the game.

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There is nothing holding Tasha back from playing a heroic golden age aisan hero with as close to wuxia powers the low point cost will allow in an Golden Age Champions campaign also. She simply have to face the fact that everybody will think that her character is the sidekick of the nearest lantern jawed white man hero, and suffer anti-aisan sentiment in the game.

 

There's two problems here.

 

The obvious one of the racism in the source material. (Best avoided, since we aren't writing political tracts.)

 

There are also questions about mismatches with the source material - the predominantly North American comics (and related media) of the Golden Age.

 

Wuxia writing and manhua did exist in China during the same period, but the material was quite different. It's probably best to discourage mixing it with the western material. One or the other, not both.

 

(Also, it's not specifically about Tasha or anyone else, so we should drop that...)

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Whoa Sterica how did you get to Wuxia from Eastern Martial Arts? Im just wondering if its ok to have Capt. Japan to have karate. Or would it really break the game to have one PC who when fists with his fists, he uses a strange fighting style from the mysterious East.

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Whoa Sterica how did you get to Wuxia from Eastern Martial Arts? Im just wondering if its ok to have Capt. Japan to have karate. Or would it really break the game to have one PC who when fists with his fists, he uses a strange fighting style from the mysterious East.

Assault's fault for using that word first.

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Whoa Sterica how did you get to Wuxia from Eastern Martial Arts? Im just wondering if its ok to have Capt. Japan to have karate. Or would it really break the game to have one PC who when fists with his fists, he uses a strange fighting style from the mysterious East.

 

It was me who made the connection. My intention was to argue that the sub-genre breaks down if you attempt to include everything.

 

"Eastern Martial Arts" as skills? Fine, whatever. "Eastern Martial Arts" as powers? Not in my game, anyway.

 

Jiu-jitsu was an entirely mainstream choice for Golden Age superheroes, although better for the ones who aren't basically just red-blooded brawlers.

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Many of the "forbidden" martial arts are only forbidden because of a country of origin. Don't let that fact stop your creative juces. Yes, the list of available martial arts for heros are limited by culture because of the isolation idea. It will be tons of years before we start looking outside our borders for, well, anything.

 

Still, if you can make it work, then it works. Your chinies-american gardener taught you how to protect yourself? Then buy your character 10 points if Kung Fu maneuvers. If your a two fisted all american boy, then why does he know An Chi without even steping into Chinatown, let alone China?

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I accept Darren's point. You can certainly have any background for your Golden Age character that you like and can logically justify; but if the purpose of the book is to recapture the style of American comics of the era, it should point out that some things weren't a significant part of them.

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I accept Darren's point. You can certainly have any background for your Golden Age character that you like and can logically justify; but if the purpose of the book is to recapture the style of American comics of the era, it should point out that some things weren't a significant part of them.

Actually that point is what I would like to ask Darren. Since some villians were good fighters, would.describing it as eastern martial art break the feel of the game? Or would with careful addition of the anachorism be ok?

 

This seems to be a topic that maybe Darren should touch upon in the book.

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Actually that point is what I would like to ask Darren. Since some villians were good fighters, would.describing it as eastern martial art break the feel of the game? Or would with careful addition of the anachorism be ok?

 

This seems to be a topic that maybe Darren should touch upon in the book.

I can't answer what would break the feel of YOUR game, nor am I in the business of "forbidding" anybody's fun. I simply say in the book that the idea of eastern martial arts was far less pervasive in pop culture during the period, and far less common in character backgrounds. The more "period" your game is, the more it will stand out as unusual. If you're looking at the GA from a retro perspective, taking into account lenses from other periods and other fiction, then it becomes much more of a common trope- the kind of fiction that, say, Iron Fist draws on retcons characters into that period who clearly use such arts, the same way lucha history presumes a historical line of luchadores extending far back before the arrival of masked wrestlers in actual Mexican culture, or the way Judomaster was retconned into WWII-era stories in the Silver Age. 

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I accept Darren's point. You can certainly have any background for your Golden Age character that you like and can logically justify; but if the purpose of the book is to recapture the style of American comics of the era, it should point out that some things weren't a significant part of them.

The same, for example, goes for powered-armor heroes. The trope of suits of exo-armor providing strength, protection and weaponry was popularized by Heinlein in the Fifties, so there aren't really any historical examples of GA comic heroes using it. Does that mean you can't put one in your own game? Of course not. But the book will explain why they're not common, and why *I* didn't include any in the CU.

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The same, for example, goes for powered-armor heroes. The trope of suits of exo-armor providing strength, protection and weaponry was popularized by Heinlein in the Fifties, so there aren't really any historical examples of GA comic heroes using it. Does that mean you can't put one in your own game? Of course not. But the book will explain why they're not common, and why *I* didn't include any in the CU.

Thats was my gut feeling. No problems. excited for the book! :-)

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