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Lord Liaden

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Everything posted by Lord Liaden

  1. Is that a rhetorical question?
  2. Come on, you can't tell me riding your Harley down the highway in one of these wouldn't make you feel badass.
  3. Politics can furnish villain goals -- not the mundane politics of "left-right" or Conservative-Liberal, but more radical ideologies promoting more radical actions. In Champions lore Eurostar is the classic example. They want to forcefully unite all European nations so as to promote pan-European global power and influence. They also seek to purge what they consider inherently-superior European culture of the "corruption" from outside forces, particularly the United States. To do this they commit terrorist acts against existing institutions of the status quo, and against representatives and symbols of those they oppose. ( The latest version of Eurostar is in Champions Villains Vol. 2.) A variation on this motive is societal transformation. Another CU team, the Devil's Advocates, resent the dominance of technology in modern society, and wish to promote a "Dark Renaissance" of magic to supplant technology's role. Tech would be confined to pre-industrial levels. (You'll find the Devil's Advocates also in CV Vol. 2.) This approach can be extended to any ideology or group that particular villains may identify as a threat to society and in need of being fought: industrialists, the military, organized religion, the media, Canadians, etc. In a super world it's typical for villains to fear and hate all representatives of particular groups who also possess superhuman powers or resources -- mutants, aliens, mentalists, occultists, and so on. Just as one example, I put together a group of official solo villains from Champions Villains Vol. 3 who I noticed had strong similarities in background, motivation and style, to create a new team. "Gaia's Wrath" are extreme eco-terrorists who believe the Earth is in a war for survival against the depredations of the human race. Gaia's Wrath intend to so cull the human population that they can never again threaten the planet's ecosystem. If you're curious you can read about them here.
  4. That is the coolest non-flying way for a bird to travel. 😎
  5. There's parts of 6E that many love, other parts not so much. Which is which varies a lot between Herophiles.
  6. "I have the high ground!" "I have bigger horns!' "I told you kids to stop playing on the roof!!"
  7. I've seen kangaroos sprawled out like that before, in zoo pens. Always looks rather sad to me.
  8. David Eddings' Belgariad fantasy series took an interesting tack on prophecies.
  9. Okay, I accept the challenge. Gohma Vlitra, the spirit of the planet Gaia, from the video game, Asura's Wrath. https://static1.fjcdn.com/comments/Gogma+vlitra+be+like+quotbitches+pleasequot+_913d4ef827890c39f6147f589d69cf66.png
  10. My apologies, I never meant to spatter you with the fallout from my Coulter reaction. (Edited in case I draw the Wrath of Simon.)
  11. When Ann Coulter has flown more than 58 wartime combat missions, then, maybe, she can call GHWB a "wimp."
  12. I suspect Trump's bargaining position has been permanently damaged by this turn of events. He's demonstrated that his bluster and threats are mostly bluff and show, and if he's firmly called on them he won't pull the trigger. We all suspected that, of course, but now it's obvious. What I'm waiting for now is the reaction of his base of support. Will this be enough for them to finally start abandoning him?
  13. He hasn't seen/heard the reaction from the conservative pundits yet.
  14. This is a symptom of the same mindset as behind Wilbur Ross's comment that federal workers should take out loans. These are people who have been privileged all their lives, and have no experience or comprehension of what's demanded of people who have to work to survive.
  15. So, are you saying the leaders of 4E VIPER will be removed to pave the way for 5E VIPER?
  16. I'd go with, "The Coming Epic Turnaround? of the DC Movie Universe"
  17. OTOH one or two such empires, like the Kree, Skrulls, or Dominators, can make very good "big bads" in a campaign. Particularly if their primary focus is on each other rather than Earth, and their initial presence on Earth is covert.. Prior to Cryptic buying the Champions IP, the Gadroon and Qularr were little more than footnotes in CU history, not a current threat. Steve Long was building to an initially-hidden invasion event featuring the Hzeel, actually only a chapter in their war with the Perseids (Ironclad's people). But Cryptic devs apparently wanted different aliens as ongoing antagonists.
  18. While the CU does try to include "all the tropes," I think the examples cited here demonstrate that Steve, Darren and Co. made a sincere effort to give them internal logic and consistency.
  19. "Realistic" in a supers world is a moving goalpost.
  20. I agree with Dean; even Steve Long has written repeatedly that you should change the official setting in any way that better suits the game you want to play. You bought it, it's your world now. I'll just add that most of the 6E Champions characters saw print between eight and ten years ago, with no opportunity to update them since.
  21. American response to an armed United Nations on US soil is a valid concern; but again, CU history has a response to that -- the Battle of Detroit. Before 1992 the US had not ratified the Tribunal Treaty over security concerns about foreign nationals in its territory. Then Dr. Destroyer leveled much of Detroit and killed 60,000 people. When the American public learned UNTIL had mobilized to help fight Destroyer, but were stopped at the border by bureaucratic red tape, their outrage forced the government to sign on. As to super-technology, Champions Universe goes into some detail to show that it has indeed affected the world. Advances in medicine and genetics have eliminated, or diminished the impact of, many diseases. Scientists have adapted cybernetic technology first developed for powered armor and similar super-technology to devices that allow people with spinal injuries to walk again, and people with neurological disorders to function without significant impairment. Communications has advanced significantly. Throughout the United States, Europe, and many other developed or wealthy countries, virtually everyone has access to computers, smartphones, and similar devices that are easily carried, lightweight, fast, high-memory, extremely user friendly, and have extraordinarily long battery lives. Even in Third World countries, ownership of cellular phones and computers may exceed 50% of the population, thanks to advanced manufacturing processes and materials. Holography has improved to the point where Millennium City features animated three-dimensional advertising billboards. High-tech fibers and materials discovered by superhumans, and scientists working with their data, beginning in the Sixties have led to stronger and more comfortable bulletproof vests, lightweight armored panels for military vehicles, more crash-proof civilian cars, and many similar advances. Internal combustion vehicles and manufacturing are much cleaner and more environmentally friendly than the machines of old, and major strides have been made in the field of alternative energy. Significant efforts have been made to clean up and repair damage to the environment, and to prevent further damage going forward. Travel, whether by air, water, or land, is quicker and safer than ever before. Flights from the East Coast of the United States to the West Coast can be comfortably completed in just two hours in some cases. The "Smart Roadway" system in Millennium City interacts with Vehicle Control Chips in all cars within city limits, allowing traffic authorities to automatically track them, and if necessary shut a car down remotely. When driving on the Millennium City Highway surrounding the city, the VCC lets a central computer take direct control of the cars, practically eliminating accidents. While humanity is not yet colonizing other worlds in the solar system, near-space exploration is advancing rapidly. Since 1996 UNTIL has had a fully-functioning space station, GATEWAY, orbiting Earth, with up to 200 inhabitants. The United States launched its own orbital facility, the United States Space Station, in 2006. UNTIL also has the distinction of being the first entity to establish a permanently-manned base on the Moon, Moonbase Serenity, in 2000. It now has over 40 personnel. In late 2004 the United States completed work on the Venus Scientific Outpost, an orbital station designed to study the hothouse planet in detail. It has a crew of eight, six unmanned sensor drones, and three one-man vehicles capable of descending to the middle ranges of the atmosphere. The United States established Ares I, also known simply as the Mars Research Base (or “Marsbase”) in 2008. Marsbase currently houses a dozen scientists, though plans call for expanding it to almost four times that size over the next twenty years. Although most militaries still use standard-tech weapons (explosive-propellant-based bullets and rifles, tanks and howitzers firing explosive shells, manned fighter jets, and so on), the larger and more advanced armies and navies have incorporated some super-technology-derived weapons and systems into their arsenals. Some Champions Universe governments have fielded units of soldiers equipped with low-strength powered armor (or at least high-tech defensive gear), made use of advanced spacecraft, and equipped special military and paramilitary forces with blasters and similar super weapons. But even then, they often prefer to keep their super-technology to themselves as much as possible, due to the strategic and tactical advantages it provides. For example, the United States has small squads of light powered armor-wearing soldiers, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) with smart targeting capability able to fly at Mach 10, and many other such weapons. None of them provide the US with an overwhelming advantage in combat, but taken together they definitely extend and expand America’s already potent military capabilities. In some cases, super-technology developments even trickle down to smaller militaries. The US Department of Defense has expressed concern about countries like North Korea or Awad building and using relatively cheap magnetic “railgun” weapons to shoot down American satellites and planes. Sometimes it seems that for every advance one nation makes, another finds a way to counter it using different super-technology... though the sources from which some lesser nations obtain their super-technology remain a subject of speculation. Even mercenaries and mercenary companies get into the act sometimes. A few, seeking competitive advantage both on the battlefield and in the marketplace, have invested in (or otherwise obtained) powered armor suits, energy rifles, advanced robotic vehicles, and other super-tech weapons. Supervillains like Lazer, Mechassassin, and the Steel Commando all got their start as mercenaries (at least in part), and still participate in that part of the global underworld if the money’s right. Various groups, notably the United States government, have salvaged and studied examples of alien technology from the several invasions and known spaceship crashes, with mixed results. They've had the most success understanding and adapting the tech from the Sirians, i.e. the "War of the Worlds" aliens. The highly biological nature of Qularr technology, including the tendency of the bio-components to decay or become dormant over time, has made it difficult to analyze and mostly incompatible with human tech. Gadroon gravity-manipulating devices appear to utilize principles that humans, even super-scientists, have never imagined, so have eluded deciphering. While trying to comprehend the nonfunctional wreckage of the Malvan ships that Ironclad and Herculan arrived in, has been likened to Neanderthals trying to reverse-engineer a supercollider.
  22. Well, Pamela, I can't say any of your points are unreasonable, and if I was a player in your game I wouldn't protest if those were your ground rules. However, I do feel that the way the CU is presented now is largely a logical outgrowth of its given history.. In the official Hero Universe timeline, in future centuries there will indeed be vast interstellar empires in the Milky Way galaxy, but in the current era the galaxy is much more heavily balkanized. The largest polities cover at most a few dozen star systems and a handful of sapient species. Only a few extraterrestrial species have made deliberate contact with Earth to date, and most of those are fairly minor on the galactic scale: Gadroon, Hzeel, Qularr, Sirians, Vayathurans. Of the more powerful and advanced civilizations and groups, the Mandaarians are resolutely non-interventionist, the Star*Guard is actively benign, and the Malvans are only interested in the entertainment potential of our superhumans. The others are farther away and not even aware of us. However, repeated contact with extra-terrestrials and -dimensionals, along with many decades of the presence of superhumans, is IMHO a big reason why Champions Earth today rolls along pretty much like real Earth. People tend to adapt to whatever conditions they view as "normal," and superhumans, aliens , and related phenomena, have been normal there for generations. OTOH I believe the development of UNTIL, and by extension the United Nations as a whole, as effective international institutions, is reasonable given that same history of repeated invasions from beyond Earth, as well as global threats from home-grown supervillains. That would surely have impressed most of the world's governments with the need for greater cooperation, just for mutual survival. If you look at the timeline in Champions Universe, you'll note that heroes and villains did age normally and retire over the decades since WWII, and were replaced with new generations of supers. The only supers still active from the earliest eras are those for whom curtailed aging is part of their extraordinariness. Several years after Hero Games launched its current version of the CU, they published Champions Universe: News Of The World, intended to update and expand the setting with developments over the intervening period. It was meant as the first of an ongoing series, but the company's downsizing dried up further publications. I'm sure if they'd continued they would have accounted for some characters growing older.
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