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The Advanced Player Guides have a bunch of neat new ideas and ways of using powers in them, and I recommend picking them up for the thoughts.  Some are so great they really should have always been in the rules, like Extradimensional Space.

 

Here I am going to share some of the new concepts I have for Hero, for people to look at, suggest adjustments, or just giggle at.  If other people would do the same with their house rules, this could be an interesting, valuable thread.

 

For today:

Area Effect Scatter: Costs half as much as Area Effect (any) and is bought the same way (basically buy AE: Any then get double the number of hexes/2m areas).  But instead a choice how it hits, target a location then roll d6 for direction and 2d6 for distance that each of the 2m areas lands on from a targeted central location.  All scattered areas go off at once, and they cannot share locations; if one is rolled exactly where a previous area/hex has been rolled, then it lands adjacent to that or in a new randomly determined area.

 

EDIT: Been thinking about the scatter distance, maybe a d6+1d6/8 2x2m areas is better?  Something that gives more area the more areas you have to throw around so its not super concentrated in one area.

 

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Area Effect Flow: Limitation on area effect attacks to lower the advantage on a AE; causes the area of the attack to spread out from the central area at a slower rate of speed instead of instantly.  The initial impact point takes effect immediately, then the attack flows out from that location. The rate of flow reduces the AE cost by time taken to reach full area size:

    -¼: Extra Segment

    -½: Full Phase

    -¾: Extra Phase

     -1: Full Turn

    -1½: Minute

     -2: 5 Minutes

     -2½: 20 Minutes ...and so on

 

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I like the idea of "beefing up" Heroic Action Points (HAPs) a bit, and tying them to Complications. I use these rules:

 

Starting HAPs: GM option, based on the nature of the campaign. For most games, one or two should be plenty to start with.

 

Gaining HAPs: After play begins, characters gain new HAPs in two ways. First, they gain 1 HAP per game session they participate in. Second, they can gain a HAP when their Complications come into play.

 

The GM will typically bring a Complication into play (and award a HAP accordingly) only when it's driven by issues beyond the player's/character's control (such as a Hunted or an Accidental Change). This is called “Compelling a Complication.”


Most HAPs are earned by players bringing character Complications into play themselves (called "Invoking a Complication"). To Invoke a Complication, the player must accept the appearance of the Complication in the story; they cannot, for instance, attempt to make an EGO Roll to override their Psychological Complication, then take a HAP for playing the Complication after they fail the EGO Roll. They have to forego the EGO Roll.


For example, a character with the Psychological Complication Sticks Foot In Mouth is undercover at a fancy party. His player might note, "You know... Bob is pretty likely to say something innocuous-but-completely-inappropriate to the hostess while making small talk." By bringing that Psych Comp into play, roleplaying the exchange and accepting the consequences into the flow of the story, Bob's player has Invoked a Complication, and receives a Heroic Action Point.


HAP rewards are intended to encourage creative and appropriate use of Complications; they're like rewards for seeking out chances to make the story more interesting. HAPs won't be awarded absolutely every time any Complication comes up, just because it comes up. For example, if a character has Psychological Complication Code Against Killing, they don't gain 1 HAP every single time they refrain from killing every opponent. But if they refrain from killing (say) even the murderer of their parents, and refrain without attempting not to refrain... then they get a HAP.

 

Using HAPs: Spending a HAP also involves a Complication. The player chooses what they want to use the HAP for, and then (if it's not immediately obvious how the proposed action relates to the Complication) describes how this ties together with one of their Complications. HAPs can be spent in three ways:

  1. Establish A Story Detail. Allows the character to have something in the story be the way he or she wishes it to be, within reason. This could be something relatively tangible, like having a desired object nearby, or more esoteric, like knowing a fact or a person. The effect could be considered similar to a single level of Luck. You "just happen" to find the right thing, or have read just the right book, or bump into a friend of the family who can help you out, etc.
  2. Add +3 to a Success Roll. Pretty much what it sounds like. For example, a doctor in need of +3 to their attempt to stop severe bleeding might invoke their Psychological Complication: Hippocratic Oath, spend 1 HAP, and add +3 to her attempt.
  3. Re-Roll a Success or Effect Roll. Again, pretty straightforward. Here, our doctor might use Hippocratic Oath to explain spending a HAP to re-try a failed Paramedics roll.
     
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Manipulate Object is a variant of Mind Control that affects a target’s function rather than mind and is purchased and used the same way.  For example, MO can be used to cause a computer to run programs, a radio to play a station, or a television to show images without touching it or manipulating its controls.  The power could also be used to control a target’s physical and biological functions without affecting their mind or movement of their body: turn on and off powers, breathe faster, and so on.  Manipulate Object works especially well for objects with no moving parts for telekinesis to affect.

 

Manipulate Object is purchased to target the body of the intended object, not its ego.  The type of target must be chosen when purchased: inanimate or animate.  For a +¼ advantage, it will work on both types

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23 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

Manipulate Object is a variant of Mind Control that affects a target’s function rather than mind and is purchased and used the same way.  For example, MO can be used to cause a computer to run programs, a radio to play a station, or a television to show images without touching it or manipulating its controls.  The power could also be used to control a target’s physical and biological functions without affecting their mind or movement of their body: turn on and off powers, breathe faster, and so on.  Manipulate Object works especially well for objects with no moving parts for telekinesis to affect.

 

Manipulate Object is purchased to target the body of the intended object, not its ego.  The type of target must be chosen when purchased: inanimate or animate.  For a +¼ advantage, it will work on both types

 

Interesting.  How would you determine levels of effect?  Or countermanding "orders?"  For example, if controlling a target's body without controlling their mind, their mind could also try to tell their body to do something different (resulting in some kind of almost "Skill vs. Skill" contest).  How would you determine who wins?

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I didn't post it but the effect rolls are basically the same as with mind control; a result equal to BODY will get them to do what they would like to do, BODY+10 gets them to do what they aren't opposed to doing, etc.  The structure is essentially the same as mind control, so a character could try to break out, although obviously inanimate objects like a smart phone have no will to try to do so.  Probably the attempt to break out should be an Ego Roll since Hero got rid of Body rolls entirely by making it a secondary characteristic (originally that was my concept; Their Body vs controller's Ego).

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I haven't used this much except in Fantasy Hero with some spells but I think it fills a missing niche in the game (and would be a better construct than AE accurate)

 

Alternate Combat Value: NNE (No Normal Evasion)

always hits unless some special circumstances or quality is met.  For example, it might take a roll by the target to avoid being hit.

 

CIRCUMSTANCE  

  • If the requirement is a circumstance or situation which is common such as touching the target the advantage is +½ 
  • If the attack always hits unless the defense is uncommon such as "wearing metal" then the advantage is +¾
  • If the attack always hits unless the defense is rare such as "has green hair" then the advantage is +1
  • If the target's DCV is halved rather than negated, the limitation is worth half as much

REQUIRES A ROLL

  • If the requirement is a roll which all characters have at a normal level (such as a characteristic roll or perception roll), then the advantage is +¼.
  • If the roll is an unusual one or one that characters normally only have as a familiarity (Acrobatics, Combat Sense, or a Magic skill roll), then the advantage is +½.
  • If there is no roll, but requires a reasonably common action (dodge, outrun the attack, deflect), then it is a +½ advantage
  • If the requirement is uncommon (hardened ED, power defense, mental defense) then it is a +½ advantage
  • If the requirement is rare (impermeable resistant mental defense, holding a rare item, being a special race) it is a +1 advantage.
  • If the attacker must win a roll contest against the attacker then it is  -¼ less of an advantage
  • If the target's roll is modified by -1/10 active points of the power it is +¼ more of an advantage.
  • If the target's roll is modified by –1/5 active points of the power, it is +½ additional advantage

 

If a target cannot make a given roll (such as an automaton required to make an EGO roll without any EGO) then the attack resolves as normal with a CV roll.  NNE does not avoid LOS rules and does not make the attack indirect, nor does it increase range.  No matter how low the advantage goes, NNE cannot be reduced below a +¼ advantage

 

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I suppose expanded versions are allowed as well?  New options on an old standby, Ablative.

 

Ablative: This limitation covers powers that lose effectiveness, either over time or with repeated damage or use.  The possible effects of Ablation are decreased Activation or Reduction of effect.
    Ablation over Time is a -1/2 limitation if the power ablates every turn, doubled to a -1 limitation if it ablates every phase.  Ablative from Damage is a -1/4 limitation if BODY damage causes ablation, increased to -1 if STUN damage causes ablation.  Ablation with Use is a -1/2 limitation if every successful use causes ablation, or from every unsuccessful use.  This is doubled to a -1 disadvantage if every use (successful or not) causes ablation.
    Ablation by Activation causes the power to acquire a decreasing activation roll with every ablation; if the power Burns Out and cannot be used again until repaired it is an additional -1/2 limitation.  Ablation by Reduction causes the power to lose 1 Damage Class or 5 Active Points with every ablation; each additional loss of power increases the value of Ablative by an additional -1/2 
    Ablative powers may recover by one step per turn, but this halves the value of the Ablation limitation.

    Value    Ablation
    -1/2      over Time (Turn)
     -1         over Time (Phase)
    -1/4       by BODY Damage
     -1         by STUN Damage
    -1/2       successful Use or unsuccessful use
     -1          every Use 

      -           by Activation Roll

    -1/2        Burnout
    -1/2        Additional reduction -1 DC/5 AP

    x1/2        Ablation recovers per Turn

 

 

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I think Ablative deserves a lot of expansion.  Right now its just a simple "gets an activation roll which gets worse" for defenses, but I prefer the idea of it losing power over time although that's more work to keep track of.  And it doesn't have to apply only to defenses.  Your blast could be ablative, getting worse every time its used or when your weapon takes damage.

 

today's idea from me:

 

Reduced Recovery Stun damage from this attack heals slower than REC/Phase.  Base +1 to make the wounds heal Stun only on post 12 recovery.  Thus, even if a character takes a Recovery, they regain no STUN unless they recover for a full turn (or get only the free post-12 recovery).  +¼ to make the wounds heal slower one step down the time chart (minute, five minutes, etc).   

 

This can be purchased on BODY recovery but is a +¼ advantage for each step up the time chart, starting at Recovery/week.  Ordinarily with care in a hospital etc a character can get Body back equal to their Recovery each week.  This pushes that rate down to once per month for +¼, then +½ for once a season, and so on.

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29 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

I think Ablative deserves a lot of expansion.  Right now its just a simple "gets an activation roll which gets worse" for defenses, but I prefer the idea of it losing power over time although that's more work to keep track of.  And it doesn't have to apply only to defenses.  Your blast could be ablative, getting worse every time its used or when your weapon takes damage.

 

Not being defenses only was in fact one of the reasons for expanding it.

 

Can't recall how to multi quote at the moment.  The fiction is full of such difficult to heal wounds, but the presence of Aid/Healing/Regen powers versus this advantage needs to be explored.

 

 

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The fiction is full of such difficult to heal wounds, but the presence of Aid/Healing/Regen powers versus this advantage needs to be explored

 

Yeah most of the ideas that I have in my file and will post here are the result of "how would you build that in Hero?" and not finding a really elegant, adequate method in the rules.

 

Probably I'd rule that any other method of healing works as normal unless an additional advantage is taken, maybe a +½ advantage to negate extraordinary healing, and "Armor Piercing" on the heal or regen would negate that effect, in turn.

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Capped Effect: This limitation limits the maximum impact from a power, relative to the target's abilities.  For a -1/2 limitation, the power's effects apply normally until they reach half the target's ability, then has no additional effect.  Repeated uses of the power do not change the basis for the Capped Effect - it is half of maximum, not half of half.
    (Ex: Speed Limit uses Drain Running 4d6 Capped Effect Half(-1/2) against Anthem (who has 8" Running) for 16 points of effect.  Instead of reducing him to 0" of Running, the Capped Effect can only reduce him to 4" of running.)
    Different levels of Capped Effect can also be taken.  For a (-1/4) limitation the Capped Effect is one quarter of maximum.  For a (-1) limitation the Capped Effect is three quarters of maximum.

 

 

Leaky: This -1/4 limitation only applies to defensive powers.  It treats all attacks against it as if they had the Penetrating advantage: The BODY rolled on the attack dice gets through the defense, so the character takes that much effect, plus anything higher than the level of the defense.  If the attack is already Penetrating, the amount penetrated increases by +1 for every die rolled.

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This one came from an idea that came up during the discussion of 6th edition here years back.  I cannot remember who it was that originally came up with this idea (forgive me, if it was you, please let me know).

 

Curse is a variant on Drain which allows the character to negatively affect a target in ways the game does not readily allow.  For example, Curse can apply complications to a target, or apply limitations to one or more of their powers, change or remove modifiers from a power, and so on.  It functions the same way as Drain normally does (roll a die for effect, fades, blocked by power defense, etc).

 

Using Curse is very similar to drain, but instead of taking points away, it typically adds points to the effect in question.  For example, adding unluck to a target requires draining enough points to apply the unluck levels.  All complications and limitations applied to a target are considered to be “defensive” powers, and cost twice as much to affect.  So adding 1d6 of unluck to a victim costs 10 points of Curse effect.  Until the Drain has reached the full cost of one increment of the curse, it has no effect.

 

Curse fades and acts the same as any Alteration Power, but is bought targeting a single specific negative effect rather than a power or characteristic.  This can be expanded as usual using the rules for Expanded Effect and other advantages for Alteration Powers.

 

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Impaling: ignores appropriate defense by 1 for each body rolled on the dice per damage class even if not normally counted (such as for Flash or Mind Control). +¼, but +½ for unusual or rare effects.  Hardened Defenses counters this effect.

 

Costing this was tough, because the dice you can get for the cost of the limitation can add up to more effect than the amount Impaled.  And with Armor Piercing now a +¼ advantage, that HALVES defenses.  But half might still be more than your dice of effect, and this guarantees at least some gets through.

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4 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

 

Impaling: ignores appropriate defense by 1 for each body rolled on the dice per damage class even if not normally counted (such as for Flash or Mind Control). +¼, but +½ for unusual or rare effects.  Hardened Defenses counters this effect.

 

Costing this was tough, because the dice you can get for the cost of the limitation can add up to more effect than the amount Impaled.  And with Armor Piercing now a +¼ advantage, that HALVES defenses.  But half might still be more than your dice of effect, and this guarantees at least some gets through.

 

Not to say it's a bad idea, but isn't this just a variant of Piercing?  Or using Penetrating to reduce the defense?    

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On 6/17/2021 at 5:10 PM, Christougher said:

Leaky: This -1/4 limitation only applies to defensive powers.  It treats all attacks against it as if they had the Penetrating advantage: The BODY rolled on the attack dice gets through the defense, so the character takes that much effect, plus anything higher than the level of the defense.  If the attack is already Penetrating, the amount penetrated increases by +1 for every die rolled.

 

I am playing a character in a 5e campaign who is cybernetic.  The concept is that her flesh is intact but her nervous system, organs, skeleton and muscles are reinforced and enhanced with replicating alien nanites.  Effectively, she is like a robot encased in flesh, a bit like the original Terminator  

 

Since the flesh is on the outside, the first point of killing damage that hits bypasses the "armor" provided by her internal nanite reinforcement.  Consequently, she is still susceptible to things like a choke hold, a taser or a poison dart.  When she was hit by a penetrating attack, the first point of killing damage got through and then her armor acts normally.  Additionally, normal blast attacks that do more body than her regular PD (or ED) will automatically do one body damage as well before her armor is taken into consideration.  The GM allowed this as a -0.25 limitation (first point of killing damage bypasses armor) 

 

I really like the concept of "Leaky" defense.  I just want to add that it is important for the GM to determine what effects the defense protects against.  Things like NND attacks which are ineffective against resistant defenses come to mind.  In contrast, simply allowing the first point of killing damage through no matter what removes any ambiguity however it means the remaining defense is statistically more effective than the "Leaky" defense Christopher proposed for any KA attacks with more than one D6.

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Yeah Curse gives an easier-to-use, short term version of using transform to give someone a complication, but it also lets you do things like put x2 END Cost on their force field, or remove armor piercing from their blast.  Like Transform it can do a wide variety of things, but unlike transform doesn't require doing the same thing as turning them into a newt then giving them a complication, its more straight forward and seems a more elegant and clean way of doing it.

 

Today's offering

 

AVAD Resistance: The target doesn't use defenses against an attack, but instead makes a roll to avoid the damage or effect.

 

Common (characteristics, perception) +¼

Uncommon (Acrobatics, Tactics) +½

Rare (Combat Sense, Danger Sense) +¾

Unique (KS: Sanskrit dialects, Danger Sense out of combat any area and over 14-, Magic Skill) +1

 

Halves rather than negates effect +¼ advantage

Adjusted -1 to the roll per 10 active points of the power: +¼

Adjusted -1 to the roll per 5 active points of the power: +½

 

yes, this is basically "saving throw" but with cleaner mechanics.

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38 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

Yeah Curse gives an easier-to-use, short term version of using transform to give someone a complication, but it also lets you do things like put x2 END Cost on their force field, or remove armor piercing from their blast.  Like Transform it can do a wide variety of things, but unlike transform doesn't require doing the same thing as turning them into a newt then giving them a complication, its more straight forward and seems a more elegant and clean way of doing it.

 

Today's offering

 

AVAD Resistance: The target doesn't use defenses against an attack, but instead makes a roll to avoid the damage or effect.

 

Common (characteristics, perception) +¼

Uncommon (Acrobatics, Tactics) +½

Rare (Combat Sense, Danger Sense) +¾

Unique (KS: Sanskrit dialects, Danger Sense out of combat any area and over 14-, Magic Skill) +1

 

Halves rather than negates effect +¼ advantage

Adjusted -1 to the roll per 10 active points of the power: +¼

Adjusted -1 to the roll per 5 active points of the power: +½

 

yes, this is basically "saving throw" but with cleaner mechanics.

 

I'm not clear on this one. What is the base cost of the ability? What is the base roll and modifier for the Active Points of the attacking Power? Does the defender still get his normal defenses in the case of a failure?

 

 

By the way Transform can do everything Curse does in your examples but I definitely agree that it is harder to apply. Perhaps Curse should be a lesser version of Transform or Transform's fade rate should be adjusted to be closer in line with that of Adjustment Powers.

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[RE CURSE:] I'm not clear on this one.

 

Its a variant on Drain, you use exactly the same mechanics, but any complication or limitation applied is treated as a "defensive power" and hence takes twice as much to drain.  Power defense works as usual, it is reversed at 5 points per time interval purchased, etc.

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Oh, OK I'm sorry I misunderstood.

 

AVAD is "attack vs alternate defense" in the 6th edition rules, a broader mechanic to include NND and so on.  In this case, it replaces the defense that protects from the attack with a roll: make this roll and take no damage from the attack.  So instead of like, Life Support protects you from poison gas, its DEX roll protects you from the magical spear of ice.

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