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sentry0

Diving Into 6e - Book Suggestions

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I'm looking to take the plunge into 6e and would like to know what are the essential books that I should look at purchasing.

 

I like both Champions and Fantasy Hero so I would appreciate it if suggestions could be broken into the following 3 categories:

  • Core
  • Champions
  • Fantasy

 

I'd really appreciate some background on why you think a book is essential too if you're so inclined :)

 

Thanks!

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Well, it depends on the approach you want to take.

 

Approach #1: Beginner on a Budget

1. Get Champions Complete and/or Fantasy Hero Complete

2. There is no #2...

 

Approach #2: 4E/5E Veteran on a Mission

1. Get 6E1 and 6E2 (the main volumes of the Hero System Core Library)

2. Get 6E Champions and/or 6E Fantasy Hero

3. Pick up the rest of the Core Library books as needed (or get them all if you are a completist)

 

Approach #1 is a good one if you are just starting out and want to dive in without a lot of up front investment and want a gentler introduction to the system. Approach #2 is good if you are already familiar with the game and want to update your campaign to the latest version of the system in all its gory details.

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If you have a library of stuff from previous editions, one of the "complete" volumes is really all you'll need to get up to speed. The actual statlines really have not really changed. 6e needs some minor points adjustments because you don't get secondary characteristics for free anymore, but that's just a matter of a modest increase in the starting points budget, or giving NPCs a bigger villain bonus/experience point total. 

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2 hours ago, zslane said:

Approach #2: 4E/5E Veteran on a Mission

1. Get 6E1 and 6E2 (the main volumes of the Hero System Core Library)

I see, forgive me but what books are you referring to?  Are those the player guides?

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6 minutes ago, sentry0 said:

I see, forgive me but what books are you referring to?  Are those the player guides?

 

6E1 and 6E2 are the two large volumes originally posted for 6th edition.  They are no longer in print but PDFs can be found online.  They can all the core rules and have examples and common rulings for some conflicts.  When Steve Long answers a 6th edition question and the question can be found in one of the books, he will reference these books.

 

Champions Complete is a distilled version of the rules, minus all the common ruling and a lot of the examples.

 

My suggestion to you is to get Champions Complete if you like a book book (or the 6e1&2 pdfs if you don't care) and one of the martial arts books (Ultimate martial artist or the like) to get all the martial maneuvers.

Get the 6e1 and 6e2 PDF books if you are GMing a lot as they have a lot of answers in them.

 

The fantasy and the other genre books are nice if you are doing that genre and can replace the CC or the 6e1&2 if you want to keep things simple.

 

The other books can be nice depending on your take away of the system, but a lot of people make their own stuff.

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5 minutes ago, sentry0 said:

Sorry for being so dense but are those books in this list - http://www.herogames.com/forums/store/category/10-hero-system-general/

 

Is it this one?  

 

 

 

6e1 is the Character Creation book

6e2 is the Combat and Adventuring book

 

I guess they still have a few left.  I had heard they didn't have anymore.  The damaged books from Hero are usually a good deal as the damage is usually just a dinged corner some some such.

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4 minutes ago, dsatow said:

 

6E1 and 6E2 are the two large volumes originally posted for 6th edition.  They are no longer in print but PDFs can be found online.  They can all the core rules and have examples and common rulings for some conflicts.  When Steve Long answers a 6th edition question and the question can be found in one of the books, he will reference these books.

 

Champions Complete is a distilled version of the rules, minus all the common ruling and a lot of the examples.

 

My suggestion to you is to get Champions Complete if you like a book book (or the 6e1&2 pdfs if you don't care) and one of the martial arts books (Ultimate martial artist or the like) to get all the martial maneuvers.

Get the 6e1 and 6e2 PDF books if you are GMing a lot as they have a lot of answers in them.

 

The fantasy and the other genre books are nice if you are doing that genre and can replace the CC or the 6e1&2 if you want to keep things simple.

 

The other books can be nice depending on your take away of the system, but a lot of people make their own stuff.

 

I see, I think I would prefer to have a book book but PDFs are cool too.

 

Alright, well thanks all for your help...very informative.

 

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As far as wanting a book book, it's worth pointing out that Champions Complete is one 240 page volume. Using the 6e tomes as books is not quite so convenient, especially if you have to travel with them.

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1 hour ago, mrinku said:

As far as wanting a book book, it's worth pointing out that Champions Complete is one 240 page volume. Using the 6e tomes as books is not quite so convenient, especially if you have to travel with them.

 

Noted.

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1 hour ago, Ninja-Bear said:

Sentry0 welcome to the boards.  

 

What he said.  I second going with something concise like Champions or Fantasy Hero Complete. All the essential rules with far less bloat. I would then suggest the Hero System Bestiary as the next logical step. It will give you a feel as to how "official" builds look and feel. The Hero System Equipment Guide, Skills, Martial Arts, and Grimoire can round out your basic education into Hero. The Advanced Players Guides are handy for taking your game to the next level, though everything in them is just an examination of concepts not readily dealt with by the normal rules. 

 

Depending upon your gaming goals (genre, etc.) you may then start delving into the genre books as needed. Champions deals with Superheroes, Fantasy Hero with Fantasy, and Star Hero with Science Fiction. The back catalog of Fifth Edition supplements deals with Post Apocalyptic (and named for such), Pulp (again aptly named) and Dark Champions, which should have been named Blockbuster Action Movie Hero. The rules changes are slight and the genre books focus more on describing the tropes of said genres with only a portion of the book given to rules. The Fifth and Sixth edition are highly compatible and almost all rules constructs can virtually be lifted from one to the other. There are some changes in Characters, but even then you can use most of them without issue. Some of the stat names changed but conversion is a super simple process.

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I also forgot to mention that there is another cheaper option would be 6th ed. Basic. It is only $20. However unlike CC or FHC, it does by design have a few powers omitted (Damage Negation) and few have bare descriptions (Hand Attack is one).  Still though it’s Hero and it should do fine as a primer. 

 

Also so feel free to ask questions no matter what book you have. People still talk about older editions and that’s fine too.

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Thanks for the warm welcome to the boards.  This isn't my first account actually, it's just been so long that I can't remember any of my details so I created a new account.

 

I think my plan of attack is this:

  • Buy the 2 core rulebooks electronically
  • Buy physical copies of the Champions and Fantasy Complete books

That should satisfy the rules junkie in me but also be pragmatic in terms of lugging books around.  I have a bunch of books from 5e that are still easily used in 6e, some if which seems to have no direct successor.  I can look at building up my 6e collection of books organically from this point.

 

Thanks again everyone, this was exactly what I was looking for.

 

 

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If your running Champions, your going to need the three Champions Villain Volume books (four when the upcoming Champions Villain Volume 4 comes out, after gathering stuff for Kickstarter).

 

VV1 deals with mastermind villains. This is where you can find Doctor Destroyer, Shadow Destroyer, Mechanon, King Cobra, Professor Paragon, Menton, among others.

 

VV2 deals with group's, from PSI, to Eurostar, the Devil's Advocates, The Crowns Of Krim, the Brain Trust, among other groups.

 

VV3 deals with solo villains, like Ambush, Lazer, Green Dragon, Foxbat, Thorn, Foxbat, Geo, Foxbat. Did I mention Foxbat?

 

VV4 will deal with villianous orginzations. Like VIPER (not so much), DEMON (not so much), ARGENT, among others.

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sentry0,

I was recently in much the same place you are... I played 4th edition heavily back in the day, but I'm just getting into 6th and ramping up for a new Champs campaign, and I've spent a lot of money on PDFs, some of which I feel would have been better as later purchases.

 

"Champions Complete" seems a good starting point... but be sure you get that an not just "Champions".  The latter is a campaign sourcebook that spends hundreds of pages on what it means to run a superhero game (the spirit of my hero Aaron Allston lives on), but is not a rulebook.  If you want campaign setting information, that's "Champions Universe," though I think villain books would serve you better in the beginning than the world book overview in the beginning.

 

I have 6E1 and 6E2, Champions Complete *and* Hero System Basic (don't ask)... Champions Complete would be my starting point if I bought just one book, especially if I wanted paper.  If you're going to get 6E1/6E2, then Champions Complete is kind of redundant.  I only got it to have physical book to pass around the table (because I have 6E1/6E2 in PDF, which is my preferred format.)

 

From there, the Villains books are pretty core, but that kind of depends on where you want to go... as you note, the 5th edition books are still very compatible.  Point costs change, but the basic rules at the table really haven't, and there's a wealth of information in the 5th edition library that hasn't been reproduced for 6th.  I just finished reading the VIPER book and it was great.

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4 hours ago, RavenX99 said:

sentry0,

I was recently in much the same place you are... I played 4th edition heavily back in the day, but I'm just getting into 6th and ramping up for a new Champs campaign, and I've spent a lot of money on PDFs, some of which I feel would have been better as later purchases.

 

"Champions Complete" seems a good starting point... but be sure you get that an not just "Champions".  The latter is a campaign sourcebook that spends hundreds of pages on what it means to run a superhero game (the spirit of my hero Aaron Allston lives on), but is not a rulebook.  If you want campaign setting information, that's "Champions Universe," though I think villain books would serve you better in the beginning than the world book overview in the beginning.

 

I have 6E1 and 6E2, Champions Complete *and* Hero System Basic (don't ask)... Champions Complete would be my starting point if I bought just one book, especially if I wanted paper.  If you're going to get 6E1/6E2, then Champions Complete is kind of redundant.  I only got it to have physical book to pass around the table (because I have 6E1/6E2 in PDF, which is my preferred format.)

 

From there, the Villains books are pretty core, but that kind of depends on where you want to go... as you note, the 5th edition books are still very compatible.  Point costs change, but the basic rules at the table really haven't, and there's a wealth of information in the 5th edition library that hasn't been reproduced for 6th.  I just finished reading the VIPER book and it was great.

 

Thanks for the tips re: Champions vs Champions Complete :)

 

I'm in no actual hurry to convert to 6e, I'm actually compiling a list of books for my family and friends for x-mas presents...I'm notoriously hard to buy for (apparently).  The only rule that really appeals to me from 6e is the nerf to killing attacks stun multiplier (a.k.a. the stun lottery) and I've already backported that to my games.  I also like the idea decoupling primary and secondary characteristics the way they did but not enough to consider it a "killer feature" of 6e that would make me want to switch.

 

What I'm really saying is: thanks guys for helping me compile my x-mas wishlist :P

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For me, the "basic" list for a new Herophile should include:

 

Champions Complete (or Fantasy Hero Complete depending upon preferred Genre)

Champions Powers - But don't bother with Hero System Grimoire, if you need spells, just apply your magic system's casting procedures to powers found within Champions Powers instead.

Hero System Equipment Guide - All the prebuilt equipment you'll ever need, for almost any type of campaign.

Hero System Bestiary and Champions Villains I-IV - HSB provides all the prebuilt creatures/characters most GMs will ever need, and the Champions Villains books are invaluable for running a superhero campaign, but otherwise unneeded.

Hero System Martial Arts - Contains invaluable game elements and optional rules related to Martial Maneuvers and Martial Artists difficult to find elsewhere. 

The Ultimate Vehicle (for 5th edition) - Contains a huge number of example vehicles, as well as optional rules for vehicles which were never republished for 6th edition).

The Ultimate Base - Like the Ultimate Vehicle, lots of optional rules for bases, and some good example bases too. Updated to 6th, but less useful than The Ultimate Vehicle frankly.

 

Champions or Fantasy Hero - Depending upon preferred genre of course. Champions contains a superhero gallery (which you can find an expansion for here in the store) that is invaluable for helping new players build standard superheroes. Fantasy Hero contains an extremely useful price list/example economy and optional rules useful for a fantasy campaign (I prefer my old 5th edition copy, but both 5th or 6th edition copies are equally useful for running a 6th edition Fantasy Hero Campaign).

 

Aaron Allston's Strikeforce - The quality of this book cannot be overstated. While expensive for it's size, the print quality is very high (hardbound, with full color art and solid graphic design). Furthermore, the GMing advice ("The Strike Force Method") alone was worth the price of admission, the campaign setting and characters were just gravy for me.

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