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Derek Hiemforth

Polishing The HERO System

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

I have no idea why you guys think everything in the system must use the same "concept." Why does combat flight need to double for every five points just because lifting capacity doubles on strength?

 

It's like that attempt to come up with one uniform framework. What's the point? I see nothing practical about. It seems to be an aesthetic issue which is generally a poor motivation for changing a tested 20+year old rules system.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

I have no idea why you guys think everything in the system must use the same "concept." Why does combat flight need to double for every five points just because lifting capacity doubles on strength?

Maybe because I want a character who can actually fly at Mach 3 in combat.

 

Maybe because I want to be able to hit something at Mach 3 without doing enough damage to literally destroy the planet several times over. Currently a Mach 3 character with SPD 4 would do over 300d6 on a move through using the default rules.

 

And I don't think that asking for a combat velocity of Mach 3 is that extreme for a game that allows characters to throw around air-craft carriors for 100 points.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Maybe because I want a character who can actually fly at Mach 3 in combat.

 

Maybe because I want to be able to hit something at Mach 3 without doing enough damage to literally destroy the planet several times over. Currently a Mach 3 character with SPD 4 would do over 300d6 on a move through using the default rules.

 

And I don't think that asking for a combat velocity of Mach 3 is that extreme for a game that allows characters to throw around air-craft carriors for 100 points.

I thought you were talking about simply changing the cost of movement. If you're talking about fixing the move by/move through rules, I'm very interested in what you have to propose.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

My suggestion: get rid of all the linear stuff.

 

An idea I've toyed with but never written up is to have most Powers (at least those with a damaging effect of some sort) having two effects, one linear and one logarithmic. So, Flight gives you x2 velocity and +1d6 Move Through damage per 5 points.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

I thought you were talking about simply changing the cost of movement. If you're talking about fixing the move by/move through rules' date=' I'm very interested in what you have to propose.[/quote']

Actually the optional Velocity Damage rules on pages 292-293 of FREd does exactly what I'm talking about.

 

It turns velocity into +1DC per doubling of kinetic energy of a given projectile (which is mathematically consistent with +1DC per doubling of lift).

 

FREd describes the new rules as "more realistic" and it is what I recommend using.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Actually the optional Velocity Damage rules on pages 292-293 of FREd does exactly what I'm talking about.

 

It turns velocity into +1DC per doubling of kinetic energy of a given projectile (which is mathematically consistent with +1DC per doubling of lift).

 

FREd describes the new rules as "more realistic" and it is what I recommend using.

Must've missed that one somehow. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. I shall have to consult with the co-gm and see what he thinks.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

An idea I've toyed with but never written up is to have most Powers (at least those with a damaging effect of some sort) having two effects, one linear and one logarithmic.

That is not a bad idea, but if I wanted linear stuff, I'd probably be playing GURPS.

 

So, Flight gives you x2 velocity and +1d6 Move Through damage per 5 points.

Very close, but not on the money.

 

5 points of flight would double your kinetic energy due to velocity and thus give you +1d6 on move through (as per the chart on page 293).

 

Unfortunately 2 X KE is NOT equal to 2 X Velocity

 

KE = 1/2mv^2

thus 2 X Velocity = 4 X KE

 

So, assuming that we are doubling damage for every 5 points, for every 10 points you'll double your velocity and get + 2d6 (or 4 X Kinetic Energy).

 

And fortunately the chart on page 293 already takes the "2 X velocity = 4 X KE" thing into account.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

FREd describes the new rules as "more realistic" and it is what I recommend using.

 

It's a good set of rules, but I don't know about more "realistic". It is more consistent with the logarithmic scale, and therefore much to my liking.

 

I suspect that the only reason it's the optional rule is because everyone's used to the other way.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Must've missed that one somehow. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. I shall have to consult with the co-gm and see what he thinks.

You are most welcome. I'm Glad to have been of help. :)

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

That is not a bad idea, but if I wanted linear stuff, I'd probably be playing GURPS.

 

You misunderstand. The "linear stuff" would be, in this example, the damage: +1d6 is a linear scale, which equates to x2 velocity.

 

Very close, but not on the money.

 

5 points of flight would double your kinetic energy due to velocity and thus give you +1d6 on move through (as per the chart on page 293).

 

Unfortunately 2 X KE is NOT equal to 2 X Velocity

 

KE = 1/2mv^2

thus 2 X Velocity = 4 X KE

 

Not actually too worried about real physics, here, but since the equations appear to give a simple enough solution (10 points for x2 Velocity and +2d6), I'm not going to worry about it overly much. The only problem is that I'd also want a consistent cost structure if this were to ever be done (unlikely, since we're talking about "polishing", not such extreme changes), but some exceptions would be inevitable.

 

And fortunately the chart on page 293 already takes the "2 X velocity = 4 X KE" thing into account.

 

Chalk another up to Mr. Long's... uhm... thoroughness. Yeah :)

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Guest bblackmoor

Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

And I don't think that asking for a combat velocity of Mach 3 is that extreme for a game that allows characters to throw around air-craft carriors for 100 points.

 

When you put it like that, its sounds pretty reasonable. :)

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

I have no idea why you guys think everything in the system must use the same "concept." Why does combat flight need to double for every five points just because lifting capacity doubles on strength?

 

It's like that attempt to come up with one uniform framework. What's the point? I see nothing practical about. It seems to be an aesthetic issue which is generally a poor motivation for changing a tested 20+year old rules system.

I don't think it's "aesthetic" so much as it is determining how to make the system an easy and elemental toolkit, wherein everything logically is linked, similar to Euclidian mathematics (I qualified the type of math before Dr. A gets here!) - the analogy being that we don't want to have rules in math such as "5+5=10 but on Mondays 5+6=11". Naturally, it's probably impossible to get to the same level of internal consistency in an RPG as in a mathematical system (which, before we go there, certainly has its own inconsistencies and quirks as we get more esoteric), but as an exercise I think it's invaluable in order to determine just how far we can go and what will work and doesn't work. Too often, AgentX, you sound like you object to the very idea of challenging the system - I'm not saying you are so resistant, but I am saying that you come across that way. To clarify my own position, I'm not saying the system is broken, but I am saying that NO MATTER HOW GOOD IT IS and NO MATTER HOW WELL IT WORKS, we should endeavor to explore every possible way to make it "better" according to our own prejudices as to what "better" constitutes (though we ought to be able to declare what those prejudices are).

 

Anyway, let's review how HERO itself has done that and done it well IMHO - the devolving of Duplication and Multiform and Followers to the same 1/5 points mechanism has much simplified the system and streamlined it, and increased internal consistency. I was against it at first...now I am fully for it after seeing it play out. One could have easily said in the past "Duplication's not broken!" and "Multiform is fine, the highest total MUST be the base character!" yet by blowing away this knee-jerk conservatism and exploring creating a stronger consistency, we have in fact improved rather than hampered the system.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe uses a scale that is FLATLY CONTRADICTED by the comic books! It was an arbitrary scale they came up with and has little relation to an actual description of what the characters do when it comes to heavy lifting. I have no idea why anybody who has read Marvel Comics would allow a MINI-SERIES dictate the strength of the characters to them.

 

Because it is the "official" Handbook. And that it is impossible to design a accurate character from the comics. Hero's strengths and abilities fluctuate wildly from writer to writer and year to year. So instead of holding on to a issue you read five years ago as a baseline for the "Things" strength it seems more logical to use what marvel has said is the official strength level. Even if they break thier own rules it is at least what they concieve the character's power level "should" be at.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

I agree with you that a generic system should enable one to build a wide range of characters (alomst anything you can imagine).

 

But to be fair, I don't believe that anybody has suggested changing to a linear system. The change to a different exponenital model would still allow Superman to be created relatively easily (compared to a linear system). If you were to double what a character can lift with every 10 points, a character who currently would be built with 125 STR would need 240 STR under the new system. 240 is quite a bit higher than 125 but at least it is still the same number of digits.

 

 

A 125 STR Hero character would have an 80,000,000 STR in GURPS. (a literal translation to 3rd ed GURPS)

 

 

 

Interestingly enough, I think that simulating the comics is what Hyperion has in mind.

 

The problem is that, in the "offical listings" for the Marvel Universe (which Hyperion has mentioned), the strongest characters pretty much max out at 100 tons, but Hero allows characters to go far beyond this limit. Therefore, Hero does not work in the way that Hyperion expects. So he has rewritten the chart to place 100 tons lift at 100 STR (which if you are going by a chart, would probably the high end). Note: Since I can't read Hyperion's mind, I may be worng about his motivations, but I'd guess that I'm pretty close in this case.

 

You guessed right hehe. I am getting the feeling this has been discussed before in these forums.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

IMO a realism oriented system needs to be more consistent than one which in not concerned with realism. Unfortunately' date=' trying to get realism by patching on a number of house rules often has the reverse effect.[/quote']

 

No, because realism isn't the same as rules's set consistence.

 

For instance, a realism-oriented system would probably be more interested in properly simulating the details of how specific weapons work, what kinds of effects and wounds they cause in a human body, in trying to delineate how the skills work based on the way they work in the real world, etc. If there are lots of special situations and disparity between the rules systems used to detail different situations, that isn't a problem, as long as it all still maps properly to the real world, the system will be "realistic".

 

Consistence is another whole ball game. Actually, consistence in rules system most often results in abstraction, and abstraction usually detracts from hardcore realism.

 

 

Your suggestion about buying extra-damage to simulate higher damage from STR in a realistic game is a good example of what I'm talking about. I would have a problem with that method' date=' especially in a realistic game, because STR damage would then be based on a different scale than firearm damage. Which in turn would make the game less consistant and thus IMO less believable.[/quote']

 

I don't understand what you're talking about here. What different scale? You mean something like, if we get the energy released by a 44 Magnum shot, it should be able to power a lift of 1600 kg, because it's the same point cost than a 30 STR or something?

 

I wasn't talking about "scientific" realism when I mentioned the extra damage ruling. I don't care about that. I was just talking about simulating what is usually called "realistic" superhero stories. If those stories are actually "realistic" it's not something I'm discussing here.

 

 

I'd agree that comic-books feature a wide variety of power levels. But what about Sci-Fi like Star Trek? Star Trek characters include normal humans but also high-power entities like Q. Q seems to have almost infinite power' date=' so I can't see how comic-books actually feature a larger range of power levels.[/quote']

 

Q is a enemy (actually Q is a plot device). A Star Trek system RPG probably would not worry overmuch about putting Q and other gods in rules terms.The rules would worry more about normal humans and the alien races that the PCs and the enemies they can directly counteract will come from.

 

Power level and versatility aren't all that independent. I wasn't talking only about raw power when I said a universal system would not do badly if it patterned itself on the superhero genre.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

No, because realism isn't the same as rules's set consistence.

The most obvious definition of realism would be for the game world to be consistent with our own world, unfortunately this definition would not work all that well with many of the worlds we see in Hero, so but I use an expanded definition of realism.

 

For me, the definition of “realism†in rpgs is the following: the game world seems like a real place that could actually exist somewhere. A sci-fi world could be very realistic, even if it is very different than our own world in many ways. In order to achieve the illusion of reality, the world should be consistent with itself. In order to have a world with internal consistency, one needs a consistent set of rules. Therefore I would say the consistency is a necessary prerequisite for realism.

 

I don't understand what you're talking about here. What different scale?

The current scale for both STR and firearms is +1DC per each doubling of power.

 

For instance, a realism-oriented system would probably be more interested in properly simulating the details of how specific weapons work, what kinds of effects and wounds they cause in a human body, in trying to delineate how the skills work based on the way they work in the real world, etc. If there are lots of special situations and disparity between the rules systems used to detail different situations, that isn't a problem, as long as it all still maps properly to the real world, the system will be "realistic".

Writing rules which Simulate how specific weapons work in the real world sounds nice. The problem is that we are often trying to simulate events for which there is no exact parallel in the real world. For example, one might want to simulate sci-fi weapons in a more-or-less realistic manner. If we have no concrete example, we will have to make an educated guess about a given hypothetical situation.

 

Will our educated guess be perfect? No, probably not. But hopefully it will be close.

 

This situation is where it becomes important to have a solid, logical and consistent game system to work with. Having one consistent system allows one to make projections along a curve, and is much better than having a bunch of different rule systems each covering a special situation.

 

Q is a enemy (actually Q is a plot device). A Star Trek system RPG probably would not worry overmuch about putting Q and other gods in rules terms.The rules would worry more about normal humans and the alien races that the PCs and the enemies they can directly counteract will come from.

I can’t really speak for the people who make Star Trek in this matter, I can only speak for similar examples of my own work. Even though I don’t do comic book type stories, I do often have beings with vastly super-human abilities (just like Star Trek has Q).

 

In my games (and stories), each character is an individual that I try to make as real as possible. No major character would be a mere label (such as “enemyâ€) or mere “plot device.†When I include an important character in an rpg, I try to carefully define that character’s personality, history, and abilities. Thus my non-comic book games require at least as great a scope of power as most comic book worlds.

I wasn't talking only about raw power when I said a universal system would not do badly if it patterned itself on the superhero genre.

I have no problem with versatility, but there is more than simple versatility to the super hero genre. A universal system should IMO avoid getting tied to those other elements. In other words, there is a huge difference between seeing the super-hero genre as an example of versatility, and confusing the super-hero genre with versatility itself.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

For me' date=' the definition of “realism†in rpgs is the following: the game world seems like a real place that could actually exist somewhere. A sci-fi world could be very realistic, even if it is very different than our own world in many ways. In order to achieve the illusion of reality, the world should be consistent with itself. In order to have a world with internal consistency, one needs a consistent set of rules. Therefore I would say the consistency is a necessary prerequisite for realism.[/quote']

 

I don't get you here. What consistency in the rules have to do with internal consistency of the world?

 

Imagine a fantasy/historical world where a clan of warrior people do battle. In this world their shamans use special drugs to enter into a trance and go into a dreamworld where they have mystical encounters. These warrior people also have, say, drinking contests and stuff.

 

Okay, this world I described is "consistent", there is nothing particularly jarring with it. Now, we could have a RULES system completely inconsistent to deal with the situations described. We could have combat rules, mystic dream world rules, and drinking contest rules all using different mechanics, and I don't see how this would make the WORLD any less realistic.

 

So, I still don't see any necessary link between realism and rules consistency.

 

 

The current scale for both STR and firearms is +1DC per each doubling of power.

 

STR can bring to mind a relationship between weight and damage, but this thing about guns isn't anywhere in the book. You mean the .44 has four times the power of the 9mm? You're talking about energy released by the guns or something?

 

 

In my games (and stories)' date=' each character is an individual that I try to make as real as possible. No major character would be a mere label (such as “enemyâ€) or mere “plot device.†When I include an important character in an rpg, I try to carefully define that character’s personality, history, and abilities. Thus my non-comic book games require at least as great a scope of power as most comic book worlds.[/quote']

 

I'm not implying anything here. It's just that you've chosen a bad example and I simply went with your example. Q has a "plot device" power in Star Trek in that he basically can do anything the GM wants him to do. So I doubt the Star Trek RPG has rules systems to deal with Q. I doubt a Call of Cthullu RPG has detailed rules systems to deal with ALL the abilities of the Great Old Ones... These types of characters aren't possible to be met directly by the PCs.

 

 

I have no problem with versatility' date=' but there is more than simple versatility to the super hero genre. A universal system should IMO avoid getting tied to those other elements. In other words, there is a huge difference between seeing the super-hero genre as an example of versatility, and confusing the super-hero genre with versatility itself.[/quote']

 

I merely said that *if* a universal system should tend to a genre, better that it be the superhero genre than another genre, because the superhero genre already is an amalgamation of pretty much all the genres of fantastic fiction. But I did NOT said that it's *ideal* that a universal system be patterned by the superhero genre.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Too often' date=' AgentX, you sound like you object to the very idea of challenging the system - I'm not saying you are so resistant, but I am saying that you come across that way. [/quote'] Wow, I didn't think you would go there. No, I'm open to improving the system but the assumed problems don't appear to be problems to me. And discussions of granularity, linearity, and exponentiality and some perceived need to have more of any one of those without an explanation for why other than it "makes more sense or it's easier to understand" just aren't persuasive to me. And anybody who wants to justify any position by saying that something violates active point caps aint gettin' anywhere with me. No matter what the rules are active point caps are going to prevent some very inoffensive power constructs which is why I don't use active point caps. I use my noggin to say yea or nay.

 

I'd like an explanation for why these fixes would allow characters to be better defined and/or would improve actual play. Otherwise, it is an aesthetic argument.

 

I've got my own beefs. I think Move Throughs and Move Bys by the normal rules limit combat movements more than you see in some brands of fiction - I don't give a hang whether it's realistic or not. I care that it essentially caps combat movement.

 

I want old instant change back. Damage Shield is not as irritating now that Steve Long has come up with his own "cheat" to cut the cost by using hand attack as the base for it.

 

I like old regeneration because it took up less space on the character sheet.

 

I think rapid fire has opened up a can of worms when it comes to area affect attacks.

 

So let's not pretend that I'm not open-minded. Bottom line, is most problems ttouted on this thread haven't been proven to be so, IMO. And I'm a bit disappointed that this thread went this direction. I had the notion that we would be suggesting "additions" to cover gaps in the game or enhance the game, not rehashing old arguments about the cost of this or the game-breaking features of that.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Wow, I didn't think you would go there. No, I'm open to improving the system but the assumed problems don't appear to be problems to me. And discussions of granularity, linearity, and exponentiality and some perceived need to have more of any one of those without an explanation for why other than it "makes more sense or it's easier to understand" just aren't persuasive to me. And anybody who wants to justify any position by saying that something violates active point caps aint gettin' anywhere with me. No matter what the rules are active point caps are going to prevent some very inoffensive power constructs which is why I don't use active point caps. I use my noggin to say yea or nay.

 

I'd like an explanation for why these fixes would allow characters to be better defined and/or would improve actual play. Otherwise, it is an aesthetic argument.

 

I've got my own beefs. I think Move Throughs and Move Bys by the normal rules limit combat movements more than you see in some brands of fiction - I don't give a hang whether it's realistic or not. I care that it essentially caps combat movement.

 

I want old instant change back. Damage Shield is not as irritating now that Steve Long has come up with his own "cheat" to cut the cost by using hand attack as the base for it.

 

I like old regeneration because it took up less space on the character sheet.

 

I think rapid fire has opened up a can of worms when it comes to area affect attacks.

 

So let's not pretend that I'm not open-minded. Bottom line, is most problems ttouted on this thread haven't been proven to be so, IMO. And I'm a bit disappointed that this thread went this direction. I had the notion that we would be suggesting "additions" to cover gaps in the game or enhance the game, not rehashing old arguments about the cost of this or the game-breaking features of that.

Sheesh, I thought I was careful not to say that you weren't open-minded - please note the phraseology, the entire point was the way you express yourself. I know you too well to question the underlying motive as being so negative. I'm surprised at your reaction.

 

I have only rarely directly claimed that many explorations would improve gameplay. However, I think many may improve learning the system, and that benefits newbies and prevents mistakes in interpretations by old masters. In turn, this has an effect on gameplay by reducing exceptions and thought processes during play, so it probably would improve the fun by some matter of degrees as well, though, as I think about it. The exploration is not coming from the direction, as I tried to state, of "this will fix something" as opposed to "this might improve something." The only way we can know that is by exploring claims to some degree, even if they appear to take a "perfect" mechanic and "mess" with it.

 

There is always a trade-off between the "ultimate toolkit" (which really HERO is not and never will be under the current framework) and a derived system with many shortcuts to run "fast and dirty". I remain of the opinion that the two goals, while not mutually exclusive, can be pursued without regard to eachother and then reconciled. For example, Regen may have been inconsistent with all other rule sets, but I agree with you that it was superior in 4th and I elect to continue as it originally existed. But I applaud efforts (as in the failed one in 5th) to attempt the reconciliation for the "toolkit" attempt.

 

The true ultimate toolkit wouldn't be a system at all, as we know it. It would be a wholly consistent set of rules, probably actually rather few (with powers such as "Attack", "Defense", "Sense" and rules on how to construct modifiers), from which one could build any number of systems. I think there's great value in trying to determine the implicit construction kit underlying HERO, even if we are in essence working backwards since for practical reasons no system is built from such a totally coherent origin.

 

Personally, I'm sure you could choose ALMOST any system and have as much fun as in HERO, if we're going to discuss actual gameplay. One could argue (and in fact I have) that rolling back HERO to its first edition would produce a gameplay system every bit as playable and fun as the current one. However, by having evolved the system since then we've learned a lot about what is good or bad for us as GMs and players, and we've also uncovered ways to make the system easier, although at times we've also made it unfortunately more complex for the sake of addressing nuances that some people want addressed wholly by a system and not "arbitrary" GM fiat.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

By the way, Warp9 and Rene, I'm enjoying your conversation, I just don't want to butt into it, I think I couldn't add anything the two of you aren't already into at this point. So please do continue!

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Sorry for the delay, but my power just came back on after being hit by hurricane Frances.

 

Anyway, enough about me, on to the responses:

 

I don't get you here. What consistency in the rules have to do with internal consistency of the world?

 

Imagine a fantasy/historical world where a clan of warrior people do battle. In this world their shamans use special drugs to enter into a trance and go into a dreamworld where they have mystical encounters. These warrior people also have, say, drinking contests and stuff.

 

Okay, this world I described is "consistent", there is nothing particularly jarring with it. Now, we could have a RULES system completely inconsistent to deal with the situations described. We could have combat rules, mystic dream world rules, and drinking contest rules all using different mechanics, and I don't see how this would make the WORLD any less realistic.

 

So, I still don't see any necessary link between realism and rules consistency.

There wouldn’t be a problem with consistency in your example, as long as each separate area was consistent within itself.

 

Drinking rules don’t have to have anything to do with combat, so they can be different than the combat rules.

 

However, you need consistency within the combat rules.

 

If a normal axe does 1d6 damage, a normal short sword should not do 2d100 damage. Those two damage amounts would be inconsistent, and thus tend to destroy the realism of the game.

 

Which is exactly what I’m talking about with the firearm rules, if firearm add +1DC per doubling, then STR should work the same way.

 

You're talking about energy released by the guns or something?

Yes, I’m talking about the Energy possessed by various types of bullets when fired from specific guns.

 

STR can bring to mind a relationship between weight and damage, but this thing about guns isn't anywhere in the book.

No, there isn’t anything specific about matching KE to bullet damage. But, if you look at the damage pattern you will see that it is based on +1 DC per 2 X KE. Also, if you look at the optional velocity damage chart on FREd page 293, you’ll see that it is also based on +1 DC per 2 X KE.

 

You mean the .44 has four times the power of the 9mm?

Depending on which specific weapons, there could even be a bigger difference in energy.

 

For example, a Beretta Model 81 (9mm pistol) fires a bullet at 213 Joules (energy). And a Smith & Wesson Model 29 (.44 Mag pistol) with a long barrel, fires a bullet at 1759 Joules (energy). A difference factor of more than 8 times.

 

I'm not implying anything here. It's just that you've chosen a bad example and I simply went with your example. Q has a "plot device" power in Star Trek in that he basically can do anything the GM wants him to do. So I doubt the Star Trek RPG has rules systems to deal with Q. I doubt a Call of Cthullu RPG has detailed rules systems to deal with ALL the abilities of the Great Old Ones... These types of characters aren't possible to be met directly by the PCs.

The problem here is that you are IMO coloring this situation with your own mind set.

 

Your statement: “he basically can do anything the GM wants him to do†may or may not be true, depending on who is telling the story. If I’m telling the story (or running the game), Q will have some definition and limitation; his powers WILL be defined, and pinned down.

 

But I did NOT said that it's *ideal* that a universal system be patterned by the superhero genre.

Then it sounds like we can agree on this one.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Sorry for the delay' date=' but my power just came back on after being hit by hurricane Francis.[/quote']15 pages in... I have no idea what this thread is about anymore, but I always wonder how people can willingly live in places that have regular disasters.

 

There are things I would change about the Hero system, but I'm not sure how I would change them.

 

Putting in something like MnM's Hero Points as the way to 'push' might address some key issues I have. From there, I'd want ways to speed up play without losing the flavor. At least at Heroic level. For super heroic I've just settled on it not being my cup of tea (as I feel supers is a genre that needs loose definition and not strict).

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

15 pages in... I have no idea what this thread is about anymore, but I always wonder how people can willingly live in places that have regular disasters.

Having Hurricanes makes life interesting (I should know, I've just done with 2, and a 3rd is on its way :) ).

 

I know that it may seem like we've gotten a little bit off topic, but we are really just talking about smoothing out Hero's exponential curve a little bit. This type of change would make a bigger point spread in areas where characters have stats which are currently rated as being very close. Human average and Human Char Max, for example, are currently fairly close together. Note: "close" in this case is just a matter of perspective.

 

Doubling every 10 or even 15 points would make an Olympic type character seem much more impressive relative to a normal person (which might be welcome in many types of games). The problem is that this change would create a much bigger separation between different types of Super-biengs, and would make it much harder to run a game where Superman and Batman fight on the same battlefield.

 

Rene has suggested that the default rules should reflect a "supers" reality where the differences between redically different power levels is minimized. And then suggested that one could apply house rules to reach a more "realistic" style game. I have concerns about the rules being focused on one genre, or elements of one genre (in this case, specifically using a comic book style power curve).

 

And that is (from my view point) what we have been talking about, and how it applies to "polishing the Hero system."

 

I don't really think that changes are needed in this area, but it is interesting to explore these ideas.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Having Hurricanes makes life interesting (I should know, I've just done with 2, and a 3rd is on its way :) ).

 

I know that it may seem like we've gotten a little bit off topic, but we are really just talking about smoothing out Hero's exponential curve a little bit. This type of change would make a bigger point spread in areas where characters have stats which are currently rated as being very close. Human average and Human Char Max, for example, are currently fairly close together. Note: "close" in this case is just a matter of perspective.

 

Doubling every 10 or even 15 points would make an Olympic type character seem much more impressive relative to a normal person (which might be welcome in many types of games). The problem is that this change would create a much bigger separation between different types of Super-biengs, and would make it much harder to run a game where Superman and Batman fight on the same battlefield.

 

Rene has suggested that the default rules should reflect a "supers" reality where the differences between redically different power levels is minimized. And then suggested that one could apply house rules to reach a more "realistic" style game. I have concerns about the rules being focused on one genre, or elements of one genre (in this case, specifically using a comic book style power curve).

 

And that is (from my view point) what we have been talking about, and how it applies to "polishing the Hero system."

 

I don't really think that changes are needed in this area, but it is interesting to explore these ideas.

I don't think there needs to be any more separation between Olympic athletes and norms than there is. Being an Olympic athlete doesn't mean you can take out a room full of normal people.

See, I don't even get the idea that there is a problem between heroic and superheroic scale in this game. Any game that is pretending that there is tremendous variation at the "heroic level" is really just disguising superheroic characters. If your character can walk into any barroom and whip a dozen or more people without breaking a sweat - he's more than heroic level.

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Re: Polishing The HERO System

 

Any game that is pretending that there is tremendous variation at the "heroic level" is really just disguising superheroic characters.

Do you really dispute the concept that the exponential nature of the Hero System can sometimes hide the actual difference between various power levels?

 

Does a 20 STR always seem like it is 4X as strong as STR 10?

 

Does a 30 STR always seem to you as though it is 16X as strong as a STR 10?

 

And as far as the whole "pretending that there is tremendous variation" thing goes--there is nothing to pretend. I am not asking for an Olymipic Weight Lifter to seem more than 4X as strong as a STR 10 character. And I'm not asking for the 30 STR Ogre King to seem more than 16 X as strong as a STR 10 character.

 

Finally, I want to be clear that I'm not suggesting a linear game, but maybe a curve that is a little less steep. The Ogre King does not need a 160 STR (which is a literal translation to a linear scale), but maybe something a bit higher than 30 would be nice.

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