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Steve Long

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Steve Long last won the day on July 10 2014

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About Steve Long

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    Decuple Millennial Master
  • Birthday 11/27/1965

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  1. First off, even if the rules allow you to do something — add damage, in this case — you don’t necessarily have to do it. It’s all up to the circumstances and the GM. If you don’t feel as if the character should get Extra DCs due to special effects, common sense, and dramatic sense, then don’t take them — after all, 6E2 92 specifically states that a character doesn’t have to use all of his Extra DCs if he doesn’t want to. That’s working within your character conception, and I think most GMs would approve. I want to restate the central part of your question, to make sure that I understand what you’re asking, and so that other readers also follow along. If I’ve misunderstood you, please post a follow-up. Q: If a character has an HKA with the No STR Bonus (-½) Limitation, can he still use a Martial Maneuver to add damage to that attack? A: Yes, but he may not add his STR to the Martial Maneuver when determining how much damage it adds to the HKA; he can only add in the damage from the Maneuver itself. For example, suppose that Bruiser McGee (STR 20, Martial Strike +2d6, HKA 2d6 No STR Bonus) wants to use his Martial Strike with his HKA. (I’m assuming here that he’s paid for a Weapon Element that lets him do this, or has the GM’s permission.) Ordinarily, his Martial Strike would add 6 DCs: 4 from his 20 STR, and 2 for the Maneuver itself. But since the HKA has the No STR Bonus (-½) Limitation, his STR doesn’t apply, and he only gets the +2 DCs from the Maneuver itself (increasing his KA to HKA 2½d6).
  2. I want to rephrase your question to state it in a way that I think gets at the heart of the issue: Q: According to 6E1 322, a Mental Damage Shield has to be built with the Limitation Mental Contact Only (-½). What does “mental contact” mean, and how is it established between two characters? A: “Mental contact” means any form of contact or connection between two characters that takes place mentally rather than physically. This can include attacking a character with a Mental Power, being attacked by a Mental Power, establishing a Telepathy, Mind Link, or Telepathic Mind Control “link” between two characters, and so on. If there’s any doubt as to whether mental contact occurs between two characters, the GM has the final say on the issue. However, in the case of Mental Damage Shields specifically, there’s another Limitation to keep in mind: No Range (-½). Since a Mental DS has No Range, any form of “mental contact” that involves the character with the Mental DS using a Ranged power will not activate the Mental DS. This includes the character with the Mental DS using a Mental Power to attack another character, to establish a telepathic link, and so on. (If he were to use one of those powers at No Range, perhaps while touching the target, then the GM might rule that the Mental DS activates.) But if another character makes a Mental attack on the character with the Mental DS, that’s sufficient “mental contact” to activate the Mental DS, even if the Mental attack were made at Range.
  3. Steve Long

    Reducing tiny Endurance

    Reduced Endurance (0 END) costs +1/2, regardless of the END cost of the underlying power. As usual, though, the GM can change this if he thinks that value is too high (or too low).
  4. As a default answer, yes — sauce for the goose, sauce for the gander. However, mental powers are a tricky thing, so the GM might prefer to rule otherwise. Or he might require the character using Mind Control to succeed with an EGO Roll to “hide” his use of Mind Control from the “eavesdroppers” in the Mind Link.
  5. Yes, Cateran’s Power Defense applies in this situation. Generally speaking, the HERO System doesn’t distinguish between a character and a character’s Foci or possessions in these circumstances (though there are some specific rules that take some aspects of this situation into account). Of course, the GM can make that distinction if he wants to, and it’s definitely something I’ll discuss in THE ULTIMATE GADGETEER, if I ever get the chance to write that book.
  6. It's definitely possible for a character to try to break a Grabbed character out of the Grab -- see one of the examples under "Multiple Grabs," 6E2 63, for an example of how this is done. And yes, a character can try to break a telekinetically Grabbed character out of the Telekinesis Grab. In this case, use the telekinetic character's DCV to determine whether the character can "hit" the TK with his Grab to apply STR to break the Grabbed character free. Example: Zomgar (currently DCV 8 taking all modifiers into account) is a super-alien leading an invasion of Earth. He uses his Telekinesis (40 STR) to Grab Facepuncher, a superhero who's fighting the alien invaders. When Facepuncher isn't able to break free from the Grab on his own, his ally the Silver Sentinel decides to help out. He has STR 60 to apply against the Telekinetic Grab's STR, but first he has to Grab the Telekinesis. To do this he must hit Zomgar's DCV 8. Assuming he succeeds, the odds look good that Facepuncher will soon be free to continue doing what he does best -- punching the face of evil!
  7. I’m not going to try to come up with some sort of “laundry list” of what Touch Group Images can do. It’s a futile task; no matter how much I try I’m going to forget something — or many somethings. I’ll leave it up to the GM to handle anything that raises a question. In the specific case you describe — causing pain — in theory a Touch Group Images could make a character feel pain or other uncomfortable sensations. But since these would have absolutely no game effect, it’s a waste of points and actions. (See 6E1 237-38.) Just buy a Drain STUN (or the like) with the special effect of “it’s an illusion so intense it can cause actual pain.”
  8. Hey, Herodom, I need your help! A few minutes ago I answered a rules question about breaking out of an Entangle using a Characteristic other than STR. I swear to 3d6 random gods of your choice that somewhere in one of the 6E books we published rules for using alternate Characteristics for things like this (and various other powers), but damned if I can find them, and I'm tired of wasting time looking. Other than the HEROglyphs column I wrote in Digital Hero #5, can any of you point me to these rules? If there isn't something like this in print I want to put these rules in APG3, but I just can't shake the feeling that we've already published 'em. Any help much appreciated!
  9. Steve Long

    Paralyzing Venom

    I don’t normally answer “how to” questions, but for once I’ll make an exception. Here’s how I’d do it: 1. Buy an Entangle with Takes No Damage From Attacks (+1). 2. Apply addtional Power Modifiers that allow the Entangle to work against CON rather than STR. That second step is a little tricky, though. One option is to adapt the Based On CON (-1) Limitation, which ordinarily only applies to Mental Powers, to this ability. But here’s another option. I swear to 3d6 random gods of your choice that somewhere in one of the 6E books we published rules for using alternate Characteristics for things like this (and various other powers), but damned if I can find them right now, and I don’t have time to keep looking. So, what I’ve appended below are optional rules for escaping Entangles using alternate Characteristics that we published in Digital Hero #5. I’ll consider putting these in APG3 (unless, of course, someone points me to where the “using alternate Characteristics” rules are already in print). Here ya go: Entangles Affecting Characteristics Other Than STR Under the standard rules, a character breaks out of an Entangle using STR. 6E1 217 provides rules for creating Entangles that require EGO to break out of instead of STR. It’s possible to extend the reasoning behind “Mental Paralysis” Entangles to create Entangles affecting other Characteristics. Doing this requires a Power Modifier, Works Against [CHAR], Not STR. This Modifier may be an Advantage or a Limitation, depending on whether, in the campaign, the average character is likely to have the affected Primary Characteristic at a lower or higher level than STR. If it’s likely to be higher, Works Against [CHAR], Not STR is probably a Limitation; if it’s likely to be lower, it’s probably an Advantage. This takes into account not only Characteristic cost (expensive Characteristics are likely to be lower than STR), but the nature of the campaign and types of characters in it (in a psionics campaign, EGOs are usually higher than STRs). The value of the Modifier depends on the average relative level of the two Characteristics, as indicated by the accompanying table. [[BOX TEXT]] WORKS AGAINST [CHAR] SUGGESTED VALUES Affected Characteristic Is, On The Average... Suggested Value Much higher than STR -½ or more Slightly higher than STR -¼ Equal to STR -0 Slightly lower than STR +¼ Much lower than STR +½ or more [[END BOX]] Here are some guesstimates of these values for “average” HERO System campaigns, with descriptions of possible special effects. The number in front of the slash represents the value in Heroic campaigns, the number after the slash the value in Superheroic games. Many of the suggested special effects require the Takes No Damage From Attacks Advantage. Works Against DEX, Not STR (-0 / +¼): This might represent energy bonds that can’t be broken, only wiggled out of, coils that stretch so much they’re unbreakable but which the character can squeeze out of, and so forth. Works Against CON, Not STR (-0 / +¼): This might represent paralytic attacks such as some venoms and nerve strikes — it’s not the strength of the character’s muscles or will that governs how long he’s paralyzed, but his hardiness and fitness. Works Against INT, Not STR (-0 / +½): This might represent psychic attacks that put the victim in a “mental maze” he has to “escape” from before he can act, or a puzzle so absorbing a character can’t do anything but try to figure it out until he somehow forces himself to look away from it. Works Against EGO, Not STR (+¼ / +¼): This represents “Mental Paralysis,” as discussed on 6E1 217. Works Against PRE, Not STR (+¼ / +½): This might simulate the ability to inspire unwavering awe, or a terror attack leaving the victim so frightened he can’t move. Works Against BODY, Not STR (+½ / +½): This might represent attacks similar to Works Against CON. A character attempting to break out of one of these “exotic Entangles” may use his “Casual” Characteristic, in exactly the same way that Casual STR works against normal Entangles. This costs END at the standard rate of 1 per 10 Active Points used (including the base points the character gets “for free” in the Characteristic). An exotic Entangle functions in all ways as a standard Entangle (it reduces the victim’s DCV to zero, and so forth). Depending on the special effect involved, another character who wants to “attack” the Entangle to free a trapped comrade may actually have to try actions other than attacking (such as slapping the victim’s face, splashing water on him, or shouting out clues and encouragement).
  10. Steve Long

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

    Forgive me for not answering this latest question more quickly -- Hurricane Michael knocked out my power for the past 72 hours. On top of that, some wind god who's annoyed with me for some reason pushed a large tree over on my house, so I'm dealing with a lot right now. (If you want to see what that looks like, check my Facebook feed for a bunch of pictures. ) Fortunately, LL responded with all the right answers. I'm still working on Mythic Hero as much as possible, and hope to get back to it full-time later this month once a couple other obligations are off my desk and house repairs are underway. I am currently thick in the middle of researching Celtic Mythology, a subject so broad I've divided it into 3-4 chapters. I have a loooong way to go yet on the chapter, but it's taking shape. I'll keep y'all posted whenever I have something to announce, but in the meantime you are more than welcome to post questions here for me.
  11. Steve Long

    Constant, Uncontrolled or Both?

    OK, I finally had time to get back to this. Sorry for the delay! 1. I’m not sure I understand this question. How would having an Uncontrolled CE power (that affects electronic devices) interact at all with a Multipower of magnetic blasts? Are you saying you think the CE should affect some (or all) of the magnetic blasts, thus reducing them in effectiveness? 2. Again, not entirely sure I understand what you want to know. CE is a Constant Power, so the CE part of the bubble remains in effect as long as Bipolar pays END to maintain it. If he doesn’t, it stops working. If (as I suspect) you want the CE to last as long as the Entangle, you definitely need Uncontrolled (or some other game element that synchs it up with the Entangle). 3. Assuming the GM allows Bipolar to have a 0 END Uncontrolled power, this form of the power is certainly likely to last longer, and without any need for Bipolar to focus on it. Otherwise, again I’m not entirely sure I understand what you’re asking — what do you think should happen? 4. A Damage Shield already has to be bought with Constant. If Bipolar makes it Uncontrolled, then Uncontrolled’s effects apply: the feeds the DS a set amount of END, and when that END runs out the DS stops working. 5. Well, again, I can’t say much other than: if Bipolar makes it Uncontrolled, then Uncontrolled’s effects apply: the feeds the Barrier (or Blast) a set amount of END, and when that END runs out the Barrier (and all associated effects) (or Blast) stops working. As an aside, I’m not sure Blast, Constant, AoE, Explosion is what you want. If you want anyone touching the Barrier to suffer the effects of the Blast, then buy it as a Damage Shield that covers the Barrier, or as an Area Of Effect (Line) that’s Linked to the Barrier. I hope those answers help! I’m guessing that I didn’t entirely follow your assumptions and what you were really asking, so one or more follow-up questions will probably be necessary. If you post them, it might help if you explain (1) what exactly you want the power to do, and (2) what you think will happen if you apply Uncontrolled (or whatever). Thanx!
  12. Steve Long

    Dimensional Lock

    The difficulty here arises from the fact that we need another tool in the toolbox -- Stops Teleport + Transdimensional isn't going to get you what you want. Instead, we need a new Advantage: Cannot Be Escaped With Extra-Dimensional Movement (+1/4). That solves the problem nicely. Alternately, the GM might allow a character to create an Anti-Dimensional Travel field using Change Environment. Establish a cost for that effect (let's say 20 points, just off the top of my head), apply Area Of Effect, and voila.
  13. Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately) I don't know much about the exact effects of epilepsy, so before I could begin to comment I'd have to do some research. But I expect someone else here on the boards already has that info based on real-life experience, so I'll leave it to one of them to respond to your question.
  14. I can’t find anything in my notes where I’ve discussed how the rule for defensive powers and abilities and the Takes No STUN Power interacts with Entangle, though it’s entirely possible I discussed the issue with Simon at some point on the phone or by e-mail. In 5th Edition and prior editions, where a character could use Entangle to create barriers (i.e., as a defensive ability, even if it wasn’t strictly a Defense Power), it would have been necessary to triple the cost of Entangle for characters with Takes No STUN (unless the GM ruled otherwise, of course). Perhaps Simon and I discussed the subject way back when, and that’s what gives rise to your question. But the 6E rules removed the “barrier” function of Entangle (since 6E has the Barrier Power, to which the tripling rule unquestionably applies). Therefore, the defensive aspects/functions of Entangle become so rare that the tripling rule for Takes No STUN should not apply to Entangle under the 6E rules. (Though as always, if I’ve previously ruled on this and forgotten about it, I’ll be glad to reconsider the issue when someone points that out to me. )