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  1. doccowie

    We lost a good one.....

    Never met him, but always appreciated his posts. A real loss to Hero.
  2. doccowie

    Hardened Defences

    Och, it doesn't seem unreasonable to me. 45 pts 8/8 vs AP, 51pts 11/11 vs AP, 56 pts 15/15 vs AP. I'm sure there is a breakpoint that is slightly more efficient, but ultimately you can pay an extra 6pts to get an extra 3 pts armour against AP, or an extra 11 to get 7 more? As always it depends on the campaign (there are A LOT of 4d6-1 standard effect RKAs?), but otherwise this looks a lot less twinky than an awful lot of "legal" purchases. YMMV, obviously, and added complexity is a perfectly reasonable reason to enforce the RAW.
  3. doccowie

    House Rule idea

    No, of course you could do that! It's just that when you calculate DCV or see it in previous supplements you will be adding 10 every time, it just seemed easier to us to clarify we'd be adding ten every time. On the other, that's us being path dependent again, we were using lots of previous stat blocks. And you're right, when we asked what DCV was we used to say either "6+10" or "16". So actually writing 16 on the sheet makes sense :- )
  4. doccowie

    House Rule idea

    Grrr, I worry I have been insufficiently clear. Here is the system that we have used in the past: Skills: You buy skills at (STAT/5) -2 [or just subtract 11 from standard stat blocks]. So, 11- = 0, DEX 18 gives Acrobatics +2. Skill levels just add as you would expect. We don't use Familiarity - if you don't have the skill but you can persuade the GM that your background deserves it you can always roll at -3. Target number is usually 10. Easy might be 7-9. Tricky 11-13 Hard 14-16 Very Hard 17-19 Impossible 20+ This gives the same chance of success as the standard roll up to and including the -10 modifier (target numbers getting higher as it gets more difficult, in the same way that penalties on standard rolls get higher) [Acrobatics+2 would mean you need to roll an 8 or higher to succeed on a normal challenge, exactly the same chance as rolling a 13 or less; or need to roll an 18 on an impossible task, exactly the same as rolling a 13- at -10 to the roll] Opposed skills (say Stealth vs PER) either both roll, add skill level and highest wins, or use a target number of defenders skill level +10 Combat: Roll OCV+3d6, target number is DCV+10. So, absolutely no change in maths or chances of success, it just seems more elegant (IMveryHO, YMMalmostcertainlyV)
  5. doccowie

    House Rule idea

    Oh, PS - looking at your suggestion, it appears that if you have a skill of 14- that would translate to a +3. If you use 11 as the target that means you would need to roll an 8 on 3d6. To get the same odds of success as rolling a 14 or less on 3d6, you would need to roll a 7 or more. To get the same probability you should subtract 11 and have a target number of 10. Or subtract 10 and have a target number of 11 :-) Hero defaults to an 11- being a success (this is the skill level of someone with a stat of 10, or the target number when OCV and DCV are equal). That is a bit above 50%, your model means people will tend to fail at skills and attacks a bit more frequently. Apologies for geekiness, but that's why we're here, right?
  6. doccowie

    House Rule idea

    This has definitely been discussed before. Switching the system round to 3d6+ "skill"+"factors" vs "target number" is probabilisticly identical*, and (YMMV) can end up being more elegant. Ultimately it's an example of path dependence. I cannot imagine anyone would suggest the current system if HERO were to be designed now, any more than anyone would believe a QWERTY keyboard was the optimal layout. But due to backwards compatibility and transferable skills between games it ain't going to change officially, though there are several examples of groups that use systems similar to what you advise. *3d6 vs 1d20 actually changes the probability curve - makes skill levels less important etc etc. So, this is a bigger change than the original suggestion.
  7. doccowie

    Set value for increased characteristics

    I think I definitely misunderstand :- ) I'm away from my rulebook, so possibly missing something obvious here. So, without the "Time Limit" limitation, if I activate the Claw! then switch the VPP to another power I lose the Claw! - correct? But with this "limitation" I can have the Claw! AND another power? I really don't see how Time Limit can be a limitation except (as you say) where initiating the power requires a lot of hassle (Extra Time, END etc) and where without the Time Limit this would just be a constant ongoing power. But then, the idea of Constant or Persistent powers that take loads of limitations on initiation, then remain on indefinitely is problematic in itself! As a GM would you be happy if a character had a bunch of extra characteristics and constant powers with "Extra Time (1 hour, only to initiate) -3/4, Gestures and Incantations (only to initiate)-1/4" What if the character only had to cast the ritual once a year, say? In this case I can see Time Limit reducing the abuse potential, but potentially making things worse - if I put "Time Limit 1 day" on all the powers in my VPP what is to stop me having multiple constant powers running simultaneously?
  8. doccowie

    Armor of many parts

    Absolutely. By taking limitations you are telling the GM you want them to be a factor. And by taking the second limitation you are expecting your power to cause problems or be non-functional about twice as often as someone who just takes IIF, or OIHID. Maybe about a third of the time, or one in three encounters rather than one in five for IIF. Comparing with a character without the limitation - a character can have PD/ED 8 with no limitations, PD/ED 10 with IIF, or PD/ED 12 with IIF/Extra Time. The GM has to ensure that none of the three choices are obviously better than the other, and that all players are equally happy with their choice.
  9. doccowie

    Imagine if you will

    You can certainly buy Major (or even Severe) Transform, and state that the way to fix it does not include normal healing - you transform the victim into a creature that has only one arm and one stump. There is nothing to "heal" back, any more than I can "heal" an extra arm on to myself. Or Transform to affect characteristics - so the victim's base STUN is 10; you could be Aided, but not Healed. Now, if the methods to reverse the Transform are very obscure, then I can certainly see a case for an advantage, but if this is a villain the point cost becomes less significant anyway.
  10. Awesomely creative approach! Fie on the Extradimensional Space power! In fact, I wonder if we can use Extradimensional Movement and Transform (with appropriate advantages and limitations) to duplicate every power in Hero?
  11. doccowie

    How much damage does my truck do?

    "If that 1 metre per second locomotive were hauling a train of 3000 tonnes, it would be the equivalent of the car hitting you at 40 metres per second, or 144 kph. That's not survivable without superpowers." The issue is more the kinetic energy required to accelerate the impactee to the new combined speed of the impacting object/impactee (and how that is transferred across the body) rather than the inherent kinetic energy of the impacting object. It's not like the train shudders to a halt when it hits you transferring its entire energy. Except when you are Superman and it does, but that is a whole 'nother physics question. Thus the falling issue - me falling 1m and hitting the earth is indistinguishable from the earth moving 1m and hitting me (relativity, right?).*. So, I'm with massey on this one, a train weighing 2500 tons moving at 1m/s doesn't do the same damage as a 1 ton van at 50m/s. *I suspect (not an expert) that many of the injuries at low speeds are caused by impacts transferring the energy over a low surface area (like a landing on a spike), or running people over, or tearing injuries?
  12. doccowie

    Toward more dynamic combat

    BigDamnHero: "I do have a house rule that essentially lets players Abort to an offensive action if their opponent is ignoring them - they don't get a free action, but they can take their action early, and may get bonuses. It's really only designed to prevent abuses of the turn sequence like "I run right past this guy because it's not his Phase so he can't do anything about it." It rarely comes up, and is more of a deterrent than anything else." OK, this looks awesome. Clearly it is abusable, or it would be RAW ("I punch him, then abort to punch him again"; "I abort" "Well, I abort first with higher DEX"). You are clearly a master GM whose players are happy to take your ruling as Law, but if someone was going to introduce this, are there any tips on how to explain it to players so that they don't misunderstand and either a) feel conned or take the mickey?
  13. doccowie

    Adding Damage Reduction to itself?

    Like DasBroot - I wouldn't expect to see it in a character build, but if it happened through a convincing concatenation of circumstances I would apply the modifiers serially and then multiply into the damage.* 50% with an extra 25% - that's 1/2 x 3/4 so multiply damage by 3/8! *Technically if you took 31 damage and multiplied by 1/2 (15) then 3/4 (11) you get a different answer than if you multiply 31 by 3/8 (12) due to rounding. Given the infrequency of this occurrence, and the tiny difference it makes I can't believe I even care about it - but dammit, if I wasn't a bit of a maths nerd I wouldn't love Hero so much...
  14. doccowie

    An alternative to the Speed chart

    Maths arguments aside with bell curves (we all agree, I think?) I just love the idea of every player having twelve cards in front of them, with (say) 5 hearts and seven spades; or five awesome sportsball players and seven from a team you don't like - I don't know how you do this in the US). Shuffle them up at the start of each turn, every phase all the players slam their top card down in front of them to see if they act. Issues: Makes coordinating and planning more difficult. Haymakers are perhaps less valuable if you don't know when your opponent will act. You could draw all the cards at the start of the turn to generate and display a SPD chart anew every turn, but gosh, who can be bothered? Maybe everyone sneaks a look at their own top card after slamming down the previous one - may give people time to plan their action during other people's turns and speed things up? Characters may get pummelled for a few phases with no comeback, or vice versa, so it adds a bit of swinginess to combat. I'm not sure if this would be a bug or a feature. Would the GM have a separate pack of cards for every villain? Or do they just stick with the speed chart? They have enough to worry about, and both sides using cards doubles the swinginess. Segment 12. Maybe you still have the first segment of combat having everybody act and everybody getting a free recovery. Then each turn you could either just say everyone gets a recovery post segment 12 whether they act or not, or you mark one of the cards as your recovery card, and you get it at a random time each turn. Or you could just take one good card out of the twelve (so with SPD5 you would have 4 good, 7 bad), and everyone always goes on 12. Still, I would love to run a couple of combats this way just to see how it works out...
  15. doccowie

    Active Sonar: Air to Water

    I wasn't being snarky, honest - I really am delighted you are looking at this. If someone wanted to come up with a list of limitations for powers that better reflect real life, I'd be super happy. And I'd learn stuff! On the other hand, I really do mean that the level of detail is down to the individual group. Some people like their mooks to use guns like this (Thank you Hyper-man!) : Heckler & Koch P30L (9mm): (Total: 29 Active Cost, 15 Real Cost) RKA 1d6+1 (20 Active Points); OAF (P30L handgun; -1), STR Minimum 9 (STR Min. Cannot Add/Subtract Damage; -1), Real Weapon (-1/4), Beam (-1/4), Required Hands One-Handed (Semi-Automatic; -0), 15 Charges (2 clips of 9mm bullets; -0) (Real Cost: 6) plus RKA 1 point (5 Active Points); OAF (Polygonal Rifling; -1), STR Minimum 9 (STR Min. Cannot Add/Subtract Damage; -1), Beam (-1/4), Real Weapon (-1/4), 15 Charges (2 clips of 9mm bullets; -0) (Real Cost: 1) plus +1 OCV with the P30L (2 Active Points); OAF (-1), Real Weapon (-1/4) (Real Cost: 1) plus +1 to offset Range modifier with the P30L; OAF (-1), Real Weapon (-1/4) (Real Cost: 1) plus +1 to offset Recoil modifiers with the P30L; OAF (Type 1 Recoil Compensator; -1), Side Effects, Side Effect occurs automatically whenever Power is used (+1 to Hearing PER modifiers; -1/2), Real Weapon (-1/4) (Real Cost: 1) Others are perfectly happy with 2d6RKAs, or even just 6d6 blasters. That's why I say that Hero is perfect for you - it lets you tinker to find whatever level of complexity and realism you and your group want.