Jump to content

Steve Long

  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by Steve Long

  1. Steve Long

    PSLs in a Fantasy HERO magic setting

    As discussed on 6E1 84-85, “Penalty Skill Levels (PSLs) are a type of Skill Level that only reduce or counteract a specific type of combat-related penalty.” The key phrase here is “combat-related penalty,” which means a penalty to OCV or DCV. Common examples include Range Skill Levels (which offset the Range Modifier’s OCV penalty), Targeting Skill Levels (which offset the OCV penalties imposed by the Hit Location Table), and Encumbrance Skill Levels (which offset the DCV penalty for being Encumbered). The important thing to note here is that PSLs do not apply to Skill Rolls or Skill Roll penalties. (The same applies to Combat Skill Levels (CSLs), which also only affect CV.) To create the sorts of abilities you want to build, you need to use Skill Levels (6E1 88-89). Depending on what type of SL you buy, you could have it affect the Power: Magic roll used to cast spells, the Inventor (Spell Research) roll used to create new spells, a KS: Arcane And Occult Lore roll to research some obscure historical fact about magic — or maybe just one or two of those things. For example, in the land of Korrak, wizards typically use several Skills as part of their craft. First and foremost is Magic (a form of the Power Skill), which they use to actually cast spells (and which suffers the standard -1 per 10 Active Points penalty). The second is Domination (another form of the Power Skill), which they use to control demons, elementals, and other summoned beings. The third is Spell Research (the Fantasy form of Inventor), which they use to create new spells. The last is KS: Arcane And Occult Lore, which is the general Knowledge Skill covering all sorts of mystic learning. If we look at the Skill Level Table, we see that the more Skills an SL applies to, the more Character Points it costs. One of them is the 3-point SL, which covers three related Skills. That fits pretty well here, since we have four related Skills, but one is a KS that the character won’t use in combat much. So a wizard could buy, for example, +3 with Magic, Domination, and Spell Research. As they stand, those three SLs with Magic, Domination, and Spell Research can be used at any time to assist with rolls using those Skills. If you only want the SLs to offset penalties (such as the Active Point penalty), you can take a Limitation on them to reflect that. Creating different “packages” of Skill Levels whose use you define with Limitations might be a great way to add ‘flavor” to your magic system and help to distinguish one wizard from another. I hope that helps! If I've missed anything, plesae post a follow-up here, or PM me. I love creating magic systems and enjoy talking about how to create them using the HERO System, but usually that's more appropriate for a private conversation than clogging up the Rules Questions board. But I'd say a lot of HERO fans also enjoy discussing this sort of thing, so if you haven't yet, try posting your thoughts, ideas, and questions on the Fantasy Hero and/or Discussion boards -- you'll get all sorts of great suggestions.
  2. With the GM’s permission, a character can perform a Sucker Attack (6E2 128) with Teleportation, Usable As Attack — instead of positioning himself so that when he Dodges an incoming attack from Enemy 1, that attack hits Enemy 2, he Teleports Enemy 2 into the path of Enemy 1’s incoming attack. (Note that if Enemy 2 suffers Knockback from Enemy 1’s attack, there may be some risk of Enemy 2 hitting the character using Teleportation UAA. Caveat teleporter.) To do this, a character must Hold his Action while he waits for Enemy 1 to attack. (Note that unlike a standard Sucker Attack, in this case Enemy 1 doesn’t necessarily have to be attacking the character using Teleportation UAA — the pertinent issues here are the Range of the Teleportation UAA attack, and how many meters of Teleportation are involved.) Then he must defeat Enemy 1 in a DEX Roll Versus DEX Roll Contest to time his use of Teleportation UAA precisely. Last but not least, he must succeed with an Attack Roll against Enemy 2 to hit him with the Teleportation UAA. (In some cases, and at the GM’s option, the character using Teleportation UAA may have to succeed with a PER Roll to Teleport Enemy 2 to the correct location; see 6E1 300.)
  3. Howdy Herophiles! Time for a WDYWTS thread about our next awesome book: Mythic Hero, which I've been itching to write for a long time now. Our shorthand description for MH around here is "Steve's version of Deities & Demigods," and while that's a good one-sentence pitch I think the key words there are "Steve's version." I think this book is going to go significantly beyond other gaming supplements on the subject. Or at least, that's my intent. Here's what the book will contain as it's currently conceived: Chapter One: Gods In Gaming: A review of a bunch of useful introductory material, much like HSB has its own Chapter One. It will cover "Templates" for common divine abilities, a discussion of how to use gods in your campaign (such as the various approaches, from "ultra-powerful" to "basically just like the PCs"), and even how to play gods in mythology-based campaigns. The rest of the chapters are descriptions of individual pantheons, arranged roughly in this order: the cosmology/setting; other interesting bits (such as unique magic systems, spells, or pantheon-wide items); the gods (major/important/fun gods get full character sheets; lesser deities just get textual descriptions; heroes; villains; and monsters. For example, the Norse monster section has Fenris and Jormungandr; the Russian/Slavic monster section has character sheets for vodyanoi, domovoi, rusalka, and other such spirits. Here's the current list of pantheons I'm intending to cover: American Indian (selections from major tribes like Cherokee, Haida, Iroquois, etc.) Arthurian Legends (but see second post below about "Legendary Hero") Assyro-Babylonian Aztec and Mayan Celtic Chinese Demonology (medieval Christian demons like Belial, Moloch, maybe even Satan ) Egyptian Finnish Greek and Roman Hawaiian and Polynesian Hindu Hungarian Japanese Norse Slavic/Russian Sumerian Voodoo Yoruban And then I'll have a final chapter on mythoi I don't have enough information to write up in full, like Aborigine, Armenian, Hittite, Zulu, and so on. If in my researches I come across enough information onany of them, that pantheon will get bumped to "full chapter" status. The main guideline about which pantheons get a chapter is, generally, whether the subject has good, approachable resources in English that I have or can obtain. One reason gamers in general tend to emphasize/know about Greek/Roman and Norse mythology is that there are such excellent resources available on them. My library (see picture below) contains a lot of good references on a lot of mythologies, but there are some mythoi that just aren't covered well in English (or at least not for prices I'm willing to pay ). If you know of a source for a mythos that I haven't included on my list, feel free to mention it. Please include author and title so I can easily look it up on Alibris or the like. So, now that you've got the basics... what do you want to see in Mythic Hero?
  4. Steve Long

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

    Thank you for saying that, and for your breakdown of the way such things are presented in modern TV (etc.). I agree with a lot of your points, especially re: not mentioning specific church denominations and not making God a character on the show. Honestly, if I reeeaallllyyy wanted to do it, I'd include a chapter on Christian Mythology and just say the heck with any repercussions. After all, I'm covering a lot of other mythoi -- Chinese, Voodoo, Hindu... -- that are living faiths. (Not to mention the possibility of "paganist" revivals of old religions, such as Asatru.) But at this stage, I'm just as happy to save myself the colossal amount of work a chapter on Christian Mythology would entail. After Mythic Hero comes out, if there's a tremendous hue and cry for Christian Mythology, there's more than enough material out there for me to do an entire book on the subject. Heck, maybe I could make that a Kickstarter stretch goal -- I already have an idea for the first stretch goal, but maybe this could be the second.
  5. The modifiers from a Combat Maneuver last until the beginning of the character's next Phase (6E2 54). A character's Phase begins when his DEX occurs in a Segment when he has a Phase (6E2 16). So in the situation you describe, P2's DCV bonus from Dodge ends on DEX 14 in Segment 8. However, since P2 now has a Phase available, he could immediately declare another Abort to Dodge. Since an Abort occurs before offensive actions, in theory P2 can keep on Dodging, forcing P1 to go on Holding as he waits for his declared condition to occur. Eventually, I suspect P1 will just abandon his Held Phase and attack normally, but he may be more patient than that -- and depending on the situation, keeping P2 "locked down" in Dodges, unable to do anything else, may have significant tactical value.
  6. I wasn't referring to FH Complete, which uses a simplified, easier-to-learn version of the HERO System rules. I was referring to the Fantasy Hero genre book. Our SKU number for it is DOJHERO1200, and the ISBN is 978-1-58366-129-1.
  7. There are no rules for that, and I don't see the need to establish any. I think that anyone who wants their campaign to reflect that level of detail can easily come up with their own rules for reloading that will be more satisfactory to them than anything I might come up with. :)
  8. Steve Long

    Teleportation UAA

    1. No. 2. 6E2 49-50 specifies that Spreading is most often used with Blast, but that the GM can permit a character to use it with “other Ranged attacks.” So in theory a GM could permit a character to Spread a Teleportation UAA attack, if it had the Ranged (+½) Advantage. However, the rules for Spreading require the character to subtract Damage Classes from the attack, and Teleportation UAA doesn’t really have DCs because it doesn’t do damage. You can, technically, use the rules on 6E2 96-98 to derive “Damage Classes” for it and then subtract them, but that’s obviously not what the DC rules are generally intended for. So that’s another reason why the GM might choose not to allow a character to Spread Teleportation UAA — or might require the character to buy the ability to Spread it by buying Area Of Effect (1m Radius Accurate) as a naked Advantage for the Teleportation UAA.
  9. As a default rule, no — but of course the GM can rule otherwise if that seems appropriate. There might be situations where the sort of Multiple Attack you describe would suit the action in the scene or the nature of the campaign.
  10. You’ve actually uncovered a deeper issue here, and I need to address that before I can answer your question: Q: If a character makes a Characteristic Roll, does he have to pay END for using the Characteristic? A: If a character makes a Characteristic Roll, whether making that roll costs him END is up to the GM. In some cases, such as most STR Rolls, physical exertion is obviously involved in a way that suggests that a character should pay END for using the Characteristic, at the standard rate of 1 END per 10 Active Points (but the standard rule that a character only pays END for STR once in a Phase/Segment, regardless of how many different ways he uses that STR, applies). In other cases, such as most INT Rolls and PRE Rolls, there’s probably little or no exertion, and thus the GM may choose not to make the character pay END. So to get to your question directly, yes, the character probably has to pay END when required to make a STR Roll by a Change Environment effect (assuming he hasn’t already used his STR in that Segment).
  11. Steve Long

    Unified Power

    1. Your math looks correct at first glance, but I didn't break out a calculator. 2-3. See APG2 18, which discusses the standard rule (that the recovery is not halved) and the option for changing that if desired. I think that covers all the issues you raised; if I overlooked something please post a follow-up or PM me.
  12. Steve Long

    Countering Flash with Mental Illusions?

    Welcome back to HERO! I hope the campaign's going well and everyone's having fun. First, remember that a character who can't use his Targeting Senses (typically Sight) can make a PER Roll with a Nontargeting Sense (such as Hearing or Touch) so that he can attack at 1/2 OCV, -1 DCV -- see 6E2 7 for the full rules. So your wife's character doesn't have to just sit there doing nothing, she can try to overcome the handicap she's currently suffering from and fight back as best she can. Second, your idea of using Mental Illusions to compensate for her lost Senses is a creative one, and certainly within the realm of possibility for things that Mental Illusions can do. Your character would have to use a Phase to "attack" her to set up the Illusion, of course. If I were your GM, I would rule that your character has to keep paying END to maintain the Mental Illusion (6E1 150) so that you can "feed" it information about how the combat's progressing. Other GMs might not require that, or might require you to spend a Half Phase Action each Phase to keep the illusion accurate, or whatever else they consider appropriate. Herodom Assembled --- what do you think? How would you handle this as a GM? What other ideas do you have for monsewer to help his wife out of this situation?
  13. There is a Limitation for doing this. It's called Delayed Use, and you can find the rules for it on page 162 of Fantasy Hero.
  14. Yes, it's possible for a character to temporarily remove Limitations -- see APG 142 for the specifics on doing this.
  15. This is a situation where the GM should apply common sense and dramatic sense to provide an answer. Generally speaking, any character can Grab another character. But if the target is flying and the Grabber isn't, the Grabber may need Flight just to put himself in a position to attempt a Grab. Depending on the special effects of the Flight, the Grabber may stop him or he may break free -- or the GM might rule that the Grabber gets carried along while the Grabbed character keeps flying. (See "Grabbing A Moving Character," 6E2 63-64). The rules on 6E2 26 are generally intended for stopping large moving objects, such as avalanches or meteors, not characters, but the GM can consult them in this situation if he thinks they'll be helpful.
  16. Steve Long

    Images while Desolid

    Regardless of what Sense Groups an Image does or doesn’t affect, if a Desolidified character wants solid characters to perceive and be affected by his Images, the Images power must have the Affects Physical World (+2) Advantage. Without that Advantage he could still create the Images, but they’d obviously be “Desolidified” to anyone who perceived them and thus incapable of causing any harm or having any effect. (In your specific case, this might not matter to you since all you want is to be seen. I think it might be simpler and easier just to change the way you bought your Invisibility so you can turn it off when you want to -- but to each his own. )
  17. I’m going to re-state the question, to make sure I understand what you’re asking. If I’ve gotten it wrong, please either PM me or post a follow-up and I’ll try again. Q: If a character performs a Multiple Attack on one of his Phases, and in the next Segment Aborts to Block or Dodge, do the OCV and/or DCV penalties from performing the Multiple Attack “carry over” into the next Segment and affect the character’s CV using Block or Dodge? A: No.
  18. Steve Long

    Stun loss

    No need to apologize; my ability to answer esoteric questions is one way that my keepers here at the asylum monitor my mental state. Per the rules on 6E1 360, characters cannot buy Characteristics UOO; they should achieve that effect using Aid instead. If a GM wants to allow it anyway, he can decide what the rules implications are.
  19. Steve Long

    Stopping healing

    If a character doesn’t want another character to use Healing on him for some reason, he can apply his Power Defense to reduce (and possibly eliminate) the Healing effect. Against standard uses of Healing, the Power Defense reduces the total effect roll shown on the dice. Against Simplified Healing, the total Power Defense reduces both the STUN Healed and the BODY Healed.
  20. Steve Long

    Area effect selective

    If a character buys Area Of Effect for Telekinesis (or for his STR), he must affect all the targets in the Area the same way. For example, he must “punch” all of them, or Grab all of them, or Shove all of them; he can’t Grab some targets while “punching” others. This remains true even if the Area Of Effect is Selective or Nonselective.
  21. Steve Long


    No problem. Here's how Telescopic works. As you probably know from running combats, the HERO System rules have a Range Modifier (6E2 38) that makes it harder to hit a target that's far away from a character. The Range Modifier also applies to attempts to perceive things at Range (6E2 11). So, for example, a character trying to see something that's 17-32 meters away from him suffers a -4 penalty to his Sight PER Roll. If he has the Telescopic Sense Modifier, either for his Normal Sight specifically or all Sight Group Senses in general, the Telescopic reduces or eliminates the penalty imposed by the Range Modifier. So yes, Telescopic makes it easier to perceive things at Range. So let's suppose that your PC, Eagle-Eye, has spent 6 Character Points to buy Telescopic for his Sight Group Senses, thus providing himself with a +4 Sight Group PER Roll bonus to offset the Range Modifier. His teammate, the Scarlet Swashbuckler, hasn't bought any Telescopic for his Sight. They arrive at a bank robbery as the robbers are speeding away in their car -- they're currently 25m away. Neither character has enough movement to catch up to the car, so they both try to see and memorize the license plate number so they can track it down later. Each of them has INT 15, so they both have a Sight PER Roll of 12-. The Swashbuckler suffers the -4 Range Modifier, reducing his PER Roll to 8- (a mere 26% chance to succeed). But Eagle-Eye's Telescopic (+4) cancels out the Range Modifier (-4), so his PER Roll remains a 12- (a 74% chance of success). Predictably, the Swashbuckler fails his roll -- but Eagle-Eye does not, and saves the day!
  22. Steve Long

    Multiple Bases

    That's up to the GM, per 6E1 98: "Unlike Skills, Perks are inherently transitory in nature. A character can gain Perks during the course of the campaign and later lose them just as easily. If a character loses a Perk he typically get the Character Points he spent on it back, unless the rules for a specific Perk note otherwise. However, the final decision is up to the GM, since it may depend on the situation, the special effects of the Perk, common sense, dramatic sense, and other factors."
  23. Steve Long

    Duplicating others

    1. That’s up to the GM. In many cases the +¼ level probably suffices, but there may be campaigns where the amount of Complications is more significant when compared to the target’s Total Cost. 2. In theory, Duplication UAA could be bought to create any number of Duplicates desired, but given the potential game balance problems this poses, I suspect most GMs will want to restrict the power to one Duplicate (or at most a small number of Duplicates). 3. It wouldn’t necessarily affect it at all, but it might affect the GM’s judgment regarding whether to allow a character to buy such a power.
  24. Steve Long

    Always On, or just always on?

    No, that's not correct. For one thing, it's a legalistic interpretation that attempts to get around the rule, rather than actually following the rule in a way consistent with the rule's spirit. For another, even a -0 Limitation has to be in some trivial way a restriction or hindrance, and that's still not the case here. (As usual, GMs with different opinions about the restrictiveness are free to rule otherwise for their campaigns.)
  25. Steve Long

    Darkness Centered on Self

    As stated on 6E1127-28, the GM can permit a No Range, Area-affecting Constant Power to move with the character who creates it automatically. (That's now this is done in published material, such as the villains in Champions Villains or spells in The HERO System Grimoire.) If the GM doesn't want to allow that for free, then the Mobile Advantage would be the way to buy it.