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zornwil

Taming Absolutes

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

I just meant most people I've seen have wanted to defend against both.

 

Well. defending against both 12dc Normal and 6dc Killing is easy. You just end up spending a lot of points to be completely immune to both.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

I think my own prefered solution' date=' if there were a 6thEd revision, would be to drop Killing Attack as a separate mechanic. Make "Killing" an advantage you can apply to any attack, priced at something like +1/2. Damage would be calculated as with any other attack, but applied against resistant defenses.[/quote'] Let's look at the numbers. If Killing Attacks were a +½ Advantage for ordinary attacks, then a 60 Active Point Killing Attack would be 8d6. On an average roll that would be 8 BODY and 28 Stun, applied only against Resistant Defenses. Against a fairly typical character with 12 rPD, that's not insignificant. By comparison, a 4d6 KA as currently built would average 14 BODY and 36 Stun with Resistant defenses applied against the BODY and (assuming any Resistant defenses at all) all defenses applied against the Stun. It would eliminate the Stun Lotto completely.

 

I think one likely effect of a change like this would be a general lowering of defenses because tough characters would no longer need ridiculously high numbers to protect against the highly variable Stun Lotto. This would make the creation of "well nigh invulnerable" characters a lot less problematical even without some sort of Sovereign Defense or other Invulnerability power. Face it, a major part of the headaches associated with building functional invulnerability is the necessity of accomodating Killing Attack's wildly variable Stun results.

 

It might nerf real weapons a bit, but that's part of the reason for the suggestion.
I totally agree. It would actually make "real" weapons more like they are in the movies and comics. One could creditably make the the assertion that most heavy military projectile weapons are also AP by default if we're really interested in blowing holes in things. Who says the effect of a real world device must be constructible with only one Advantage?

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

You forgot the REC factor Sean. Because you're STUN is being multiplied your REC is more efficient in replenishing all of that extra STUN you just bought....

 

Actually, it's more than just REC, Stun, BOD and CON, Sean. It also multiples the effects of positive adjustment powers, for example.

 

75% Reduction + Absorb. "He hits you for 42 STUN and 12 BOD". "OK, that's 42 - 10 PD = 32/4 = 8 STUN and 1/2 = 0 BOD. I absorb 12 BOD and add it to Stun, so now I have 4 more Stun than I started with."

 

 

It may not be the better theoretical view, but envisioning DR as defenses limited to the % of damage they can block is a lot easier to model, especially if your game has fixed damage maxima so you can tell how many extra defenses are needed.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Let's look at the numbers. If Killing Attacks were a +½ Advantage for ordinary attacks, then a 60 Active Point Killing Attack would be 8d6. On an average roll that would be 8 BODY and 28 Stun, applied only against Resistant Defenses. Against a fairly typical character with 12 rPD, that's not insignificant. By comparison, a 4d6 KA as currently built would average 14 BODY and 36 Stun with Resistant defenses applied against the BODY and (assuming any Resistant defenses at all) all defenses applied against the Stun. It would eliminate the Stun Lotto completely.

 

I think one likely effect of a change like this would be a general lowering of defenses because tough characters would no longer need ridiculously high numbers to protect against the highly variable Stun Lotto. This would make the creation of "well nigh invulnerable" characters a lot less problematical even without some sort of Sovereign Defense or other Invulnerability power. Face it, a major part of the headaches associated with building functional invulnerability is the necessity of accomodating Killing Attack's wildly variable Stun results.

 

Another change would likely be a substantial reduction in KA's, since one of their main benefits, breaking walls, entangles, force walls and automatons by virtue of higher average BOD per DC, is reversed severely. And a typical human now takes more BOD from a 12 DC normal attack than a 12 DC killing attack.

 

That 8d6 KA gets 16 STUN through against your example character. Assuming he has 25 PD, a 12d6 EB averages 17 Stun through.

 

It doesn't do more BOD against targets where BOD matters, ands it doesn't do more STUN against targets where STUN matters. Why would anyone buy it?

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Stolen from another thread:

 

Re Counting pips:

Well, I always like standard effects. ;)

Instead of rolling and counting your 12d6 attack instead figure 2d6 +30 stun and +10 Body... Or if they feel that they are being shorted; 2d6 + 35 stun +10 Body. Yada yada... Enough randomness to please the rollers, standardized for speed.

 

This would also be a useful tool if one wishes to standardize damage and make invulnberability to a certain level of effect more attainable without becoming effectively immune to damage several DC higher.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

I came across this "Stun Lotto" while running my first HERO campaign.. though I didn't have the catchy and clever name for it.

 

One of the solutions I came up with, but never implemented, was the notion of changing the stun multiplier roll from 1d6-1 (Minimum 1, Avg 2.667, Max 5) to 1d3+1. (Minimum 2, Avg 3, Max 4.) It's actually a slight effective "buff" to the average, but it substantially reduces variability and would make it a tiny bit easier to buy invulnerability against a certain DC of KA.

 

Bad idea? Good idea?

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

This does not necessarily mean I have changed my mind on invulnerability or damage resistance BUT I thought I'd put in this scaled new (or scaled modified old) power that might fit the bill both in terms of how it works and what it costs:

 

Effect Reduction (invulnerability)

Body power
STOP power – not to be used unless concept appropriate and the overall build 
is not unbalanced
SPECIAL power – cannot be used in frameworks without special permission
Effect Reduction does not cost END, and is persistent

This power reduced the effect of an attack partially or wholly.  Full effect 
reduction for physical and energy attacks is often called invulnerability.  
The only effect it does not reduce is knockback, if the power causes it, 
unless it is specifically bought to do so.

This power, when used, replaces damage reduction.

The power is costed as a proportion of total character costs and so needs 
to be re-costed whenever XP is actually added.

First decide the frequency of the mechanic or sfx that you want to reduce 
the effect of then decide how much of the effect is reduced: 25% (cheapest) 
to 100%.  (Note that the cost of specific sfx effect reduction may well 
vary from campaign to campaign.  Below is a suggestion for a ‘typical’ 
superhero campaign)


Very Common	Physical, Energy, Mutant powers
Common		Mental, Adjustment, Entangle,  Magic powers
Uncommon	Flash, Telekinesis, Images, Darkness, Sonic powers, Electricity powers
Rare		UBO movement powers, Gravity powers

Next decide the level of effect reduction and cross reference.  The figures 
in brackets are typical costs in a 350 point campaign.  For example for a 
50% reduction of all adjustment powers, pay 3 x 40ths of your total character
points (or 26 points in a 350 point campaign)

	25%		50%		75%		100%
VC		4/80 (17)	4/40 (35)	4/20 (70)	4/10 (140)
C		3/80 (13)	3/40 (26)	3/20 (52)	3/10 (105)
U		2/80 (9)	2/40 (17)	2/20 (35)	2/10 (70)
R		1/80 (4)	1/40 (9)	1/40 (17)	1/10 (35)

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Doc, buddy, you want compicated....:D

 

Seriously it just takes damage reduction a little further and scales it to character points, then discourages limitations in favour of a structured cost based on how common the attack is.

 

For a 300 point camapign, physical resistant damage reduction would cost 20/30/60/120 for 25/50/75/100% damage reduction - very close tothe current price structure. In fact I'm going to change the 25% denominator to 80 to make it work just the same....

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

OK - amended it - it now costs exactly the same as damage reduction for a 300 point character:

 

25% - 15 points

50% - 30 points

75% - 60 points

 

Hmmm...you can't be invulnerable to everything.

 

Invulnerability to PD and ED costs 80% of your total points, or 280 for a 350 point character, which does not seem wholly unreasonable for immunity to most standard attacks.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Sean Waters:

 

If I understand your proposal correctly (a big IF)

 

immunity to everything would end up costing more than 100% of the character's total points...right?

 

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Trying to convince the palindromedary to check my math....

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Sean,

 

Oddly enough, I understood your chart perfectly well, although I don't like to use such odd fractions, I don't see anything wrong with the method you are using. Also, I've suggested this type of concept before with different powers that could be costed based on the total active points (TAP) of the character. Unfortunately, no one ever seems interested in persuing this type mechanic regardless of what form it takes. I guess perhaps having to use the TAP of the character in a cost formula is somehow distasteful to most people. Not sure why though.

 

I'll do some more analysis and see if there is a simpler way to present it.

 

- Christopher Mullins

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Sean,

 

Oddly enough, I understood your chart perfectly well, although I don't like to use such odd fractions, I don't see anything wrong with the method you are using. Also, I've suggested this type of concept before with different powers that could be costed based on the total active points (TAP) of the character. Unfortunately, no one ever seems interested in persuing this type mechanic regardless of what form it takes. I guess perhaps having to use the TAP of the character in a cost formula is somehow distasteful to most people. Not sure why though.

 

I'll do some more analysis and see if there is a simpler way to present it.

 

People might dislike it because it would represent a major change in the basic structure of HERO to start adding powers with costs relative to the total cost of the characters.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

You are right - once ran a game in which we had a wereleopard' date=' and he had ultra fast healing/regeneration - simulated by damage reduction: sfx being if he took 40 stun and 8 body through defences it was only (really) 10/2, but LOOKED like the full amount so his REC and regen seemed to be working 4 times quicker.[/quote']

 

Very cool method, well done, thanks for posting that!

 

Oh, and btw, I think I mentioned this elsewhere, but seems nobody really uses the idea, you could also do Invulnerability as simple extension of the "Personal Immunity" SFX if bought on all your powers that are of that theme/type, and I think it's always reasonable to assume that this extends to others' attacks IF (and only if) identical SFX.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Another change would likely be a substantial reduction in KA's, since one of their main benefits, breaking walls, entangles, force walls and automatons by virtue of higher average BOD per DC, is reversed severely. And a typical human now takes more BOD from a 12 DC normal attack than a 12 DC killing attack.

 

That 8d6 KA gets 16 STUN through against your example character. Assuming he has 25 PD, a 12d6 EB averages 17 Stun through.

 

It doesn't do more BOD against targets where BOD matters, ands it doesn't do more STUN against targets where STUN matters. Why would anyone buy it?

For these and other reasons, isn't is just simpler not to allow the stun lottery in one's game than to have to "fix" something that doesn't need it, killing attacks in general?

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

People might dislike it because it would represent a major change in the basic structure of HERO to start adding powers with costs relative to the total cost of the characters.

As someone (Lucius, I think) cited earlier, it's already done with Duplication, actually.

 

I'm not fond of it, I think it makes things more complicated in more rapdily-growing campaigns. But it's not without merit.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

As someone (Lucius, I think) cited earlier, it's already done with Duplication, actually.

 

I'm not fond of it, I think it makes things more complicated in more rapdily-growing campaigns. But it's not without merit.

 

I think Duplication can be looked at more as being scaled in the same way that a Multipower with more slots is, or the way a Vehicle or Base is.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Another change would likely be a substantial reduction in KA's, since one of their main benefits, breaking walls, entangles, force walls and automatons by virtue of higher average BOD per DC, is reversed severely. And a typical human now takes more BOD from a 12 DC normal attack than a 12 DC killing attack.

 

That 8d6 KA gets 16 STUN through against your example character. Assuming he has 25 PD, a 12d6 EB averages 17 Stun through.

 

It doesn't do more BOD against targets where BOD matters, ands it doesn't do more STUN against targets where STUN matters. Why would anyone buy it?

See, here you're arguing mechanics rather than sfx. I'm sorry, but a player or GM who buys a Killing Attack simply so he can blow through walls and robots is metagaming; and I have no real sympathy for metagamers. People should buy Killing Attacks because their sfx is to poke holes in things, not because their number crunching has determined that KA is better at certain things. You want to poke holes in walls or Entangles, buy AP.

 

How about Killing Attacks that only apply vs. Resistant Defenses, but the Stun number is equal to the BODY rolled. No Stun Multiplier at all? Same BODY as before; just less Stun. If the intent is to kill, why the emphasis on Stun? Think anyone would buy that?

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

People might dislike it because it would represent a major change in the basic structure of HERO to start adding powers with costs relative to the total cost of the characters.

Are talking about Hero 5th Edtion only or all incarnations of Hero?

If you are talking about all incarnations then you are overlooking/ignoring this basic mechanic that was prominent in Hero 4th Edition and somewhat less prominent in Hero 5th Edition.

 

1) Multiform's Cost derives it's cost based on the Active Points of the character.

2) Duplication's Cost derives it's cost based on the Active Points of the character.

3) The Linked Limitation Value is derived from the Active Points of the power it is linked to.

 

So the mechanic has existed and still exists. In all cases the cost/value may change depending on a threshold of Active Points. So if you object to this mechanic in general, then you need to rework rules for all of the above.

 

However, if you are objecting to the application of mechanic as described by Sean, then that's a completely different argument and strictly a matter of opinion or taste. But to imply this is somehow some new fangled mechanic never before seen... would be invalid.

 

Just My Humble Opinion

 

- Christopher Mullins

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

See, here you're arguing mechanics rather than sfx. I'm sorry, but a player or GM who buys a Killing Attack simply so he can blow through walls and robots is metagaming; and I have no real sympathy for metagamers. People should buy Killing Attacks because their sfx is to poke holes in things, not because their number crunching has determined that KA is better at certain things. You want to poke holes in walls or Entangles, buy AP.

 

How about Killing Attacks that only apply vs. Resistant Defenses, but the Stun number is equal to the BODY rolled. No Stun Multiplier at all? Same BODY as before; just less Stun. If the intent is to kill, why the emphasis on Stun? Think anyone would buy that?

I think of KAs as valid for destroying objects. In fact, I think that's the primary use a number of superheroes have them for. I don't think that's metagaming in one sense, I think it's sensible for the character who can't/won't use deadly force except against such things. And in the sense it is metagaming, in mapping a specific power to the desired character Power, it's appropriate, choosing KA because that is what it is, something which destroys stuff.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

I think of KAs as valid for destroying objects. In fact' date=' I think that's the primary use a number of superheroes have them for. I don't think that's metagaming in one sense, I think it's sensible for the character who can't/won't use deadly force except against such things. And in the sense it is metagaming, in mapping a specific power to the desired character Power, it's appropriate, choosing KA because that is what it is, something which destroys stuff.[/quote']

 

I'm starting a thread on the KA aspect of this discussion. I'd like to invite all who are interested to participate.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

I think of KAs as valid for destroying objects. In fact' date=' I think that's the primary use a number of superheroes have them for. I don't think that's metagaming in one sense, I think it's sensible for the character who can't/won't use deadly force except against such things. And in the sense it is metagaming, in mapping a specific power to the desired character Power, it's appropriate, choosing KA because that is what it is, something which destroys stuff.[/quote']Let's compare numbers again:

 

4d6 Killing Attack (12 DC) does 14 BODY on average roll (We'll ignore Stun since we're discussing blowing holes in walls, robots, etc.) Max BODY is 24.

 

8d8 EB AP (12 DC) does 8 BODY on average roll; but is applied against halved DEF for the target. Max BODY is 16 but applied against half DEF.

 

Assuming the target has a DEF of 14, the average AP attack will do 2 more damage. Assuming the target has a DEF of 8, the average AP attack will do 2 less damage.

 

I frankly can't see where +/- 2 points is worth getting worked up over. It still looks to me like most players purchase KAs primarily because they want that big Stun Multiple. Be honest - how many players would buy KAs if there was no Stun Multiple?

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

I think of KAs as valid for destroying objects. In fact' date=' I think that's the primary use a number of superheroes have them for. I don't think that's metagaming in one sense, I think it's sensible for the character who can't/won't use deadly force except against such things. And in the sense it is metagaming, in mapping a specific power to the desired character Power, it's appropriate, choosing KA because that is what it is, something which destroys stuff.[/quote']

 

One of my objections to the current mechanic is the effect that extra BODY damage has on other powers: notably entangle and force wall. Killing attacks substantially reduce their worth, without adding equivalent value to the system.

 

I don't see why we need a power (costed, it is worth remembering,identically to equivalent DCs of normal damage) that:

 

1. Does more body on average then normal attacks

2. Does at least as much stun through defences on average, and for high defences a lot more

3. Has a far better chance of stunning, and

4. Is stopped by a more limited (and expensive) class of defence

 

The only reason I can think of is that it has always been there.

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Re: Taming Absolutes

 

Sean Waters:

 

If I understand your proposal correctly (a big IF)

 

immunity to everything would end up costing more than 100% of the character's total points...right?

 

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Trying to convince the palindromedary to check my math....

 

 

Absolutely - that was deliberate. The tone of this discussion has been (as I understood it) that absolute invulnerabilty to everything was not desireable and there should always be some way you can be affected: this costing ensures there is. You could probably get round the stricture with adjustment powers, but that would contravene the STOP sign...

 

One feature of this idea that goes way beyond simple damage immunity can be illustrated with examples of (100%) immunity to physical damage and immunity to TK.

 

Witht he former you would not be hurt by a TK punch but you could be picked up and thrown. With the latter, TK just would not affect you: you could not be hurt by a TK punch, or picked up - it has no effective strength against you.

 

OTOH if the TK was used to pick up a rock and hurl it at you then the former would still protect you but the latter would offer no protection at all.

 

The important thing is it is EFFECT reduction, and so a more generally useful power for building concept characters than a simple damage defence mechanism.

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