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Sean Waters

Indirect discussion

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Here's what I was thinking: area effect attack:

 

If it is (say) an explosion in the (real) sense then teh blast will have a point of origin and all the energy will emanate from that point, so being behind a rigid barrier, even if it did not englobe you, would logically provide a defence to anything behind the barrier. my understanding is that is how the A0E advantage currently works, whether you buy it AoE Radius, explosion, or whatever.

 

However there is a different way the attack COULD work: say it was a rapid dispersal gas attack, or some sort of magic that turned the moisture int he air to acid...arguably being behind a barrier would be of no use unless the barrier completely englobed you, and even then the magic might penetrate it.

 

Sounds to me like indirect.

 

So, preliminary question: is that how you understand AoE to work: as an emanation from the point of origin?

 

Now, that got me looking at indirect: it is a bit difficult to actually work out, IMO - all this business about point of origin and direction of attack does not actually make a great deal of sense.

 

I know I saw a discussion along these lines on a recent thread, but my search-fu is currently not working, so apologies if I am just rehashing something someone has already said better.

 

Indirect makes little sense as currently explained in the rules.

 

The aspect of indirect that is important is, IMO, its ability to circumvent barriers, and its ability to cause knockback in a specific direction.

 

Now as far as circumventing barriers goes, you have two sorts: the sort that just intervenes between attacker and target (so that an attack capable of travelling in an arc or approaching from another direction could hit the protected target) AND the sort that completely englobes the target so that only an attack capable of passing through barriers can hit it. There is, arguably a third category - attacks capable of circumventing your own external defences, such as force walls, entangles etc.

 

To be honest the direction etc of the attack is pretty irrelevant.

 

I'd propose that indirect be re-written as follows:

 

+1/4 capable of circumventing intervening barriers that do not englobe the target i.e an attack that can go around barriers, OR

 

+1/4 capable of circumventing your own external defences or constructs e.g. can ignore forece walls or entangles you have created, OR

 

+1/2 capable of circumventing intervening barriers that englobe the target (whoever created them)

 

additional +1/4 capable of applying knockback in any direction

 

Seems to cover it all.

 

Notes and comments: you can use indirect to avoid being spotted as the source of an attack, at least potentially: if the attack can start anywhere and shoot off in any direction tehnm it is not obvious where the attack originates, right? Well, no. that is not what indirect does, that is what IPE does, so if it is NOT obvious where the attack comes from, buy IPE.

 

Second you can often get a 'surprise' OCV bomus from indirect attacks. Why? Buy 3x5 point levels only useable with the indirect attack and activation or RSR.

 

To get back to the original point then, you could buy AoE radius with +1/4 indirect to simulate the gas attack that goes round corners, and with the +1/2 level to simulate the magic air moisture to acid that goes through everything that is not a personal defence.

 

Sound fair?

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

If it is (say) an explosion in the (real) sense then teh blast will have a point of origin and all the energy will emanate from that point, so being behind a rigid barrier, even if it did not englobe you, would logically provide a defence to anything behind the barrier. ...

 

However there is a different way the attack COULD work: say it was a rapid dispersal gas attack, or some sort of magic that turned the moisture int he air to acid...arguably being behind a barrier would be of no use unless the barrier completely englobed you, and even then the magic might penetrate it.

 

SFX

 

Sorry but that's how I feel. A gas attack could hit extra enemies, but it could also hit extra friends. Net -0.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

What he said.

 

A gas attack is usually purchased with NND (does not need to breath) so unless the barriers in question are airtight they have no affect anyway.

 

Remember, AOE any area (hexes) can be used to model a very accurate spray of automatic weapon fire. The point of origin in this case is still the gun, not anywhere IN the AOE.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

SFX

 

Sorry but that's how I feel. A gas attack could hit extra enemies, but it could also hit extra friends. Net -0.

 

Yeppers. It depends on the SFX of the attack.

 

In some of those cases I would give the attack a "pseudo-indirect" for free. If you have a gas attack and are using it for the "pseudo-indirect" effect and Tempest wafts into the room and blows it all back in your direction with her WindBlast...well that's just tough noogies.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

So' date=' preliminary question: is that how you understand AoE to work: as an emanation from the point of origin?[/quote']

 

Inasmuch as determining what area it actually covers, yes. (Barring modifiers such as "conforms to available space", of course.)

 

I could easily go with it being an AOE that started at the edges and rushed inwards, though.

 

I like your idea, too :)

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

SFX

 

Sorry but that's how I feel. A gas attack could hit extra enemies, but it could also hit extra friends. Net -0.

 

I presume that anyone with an AoE attack will be mainly aiming it at enemies. Moreover I doubt that many characters will solely have an AoE attack - they will only use that attack when they can avoid hitting friends or when they know the friends can ignore it.

 

I also presume that it is an advantage to be able to hit everyone in the area of effect and ignore any barriers, and not an advantage to have barriers interupt your attack, except in vary rarified, and rare, circumstances.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

What he said.

 

A gas attack is usually purchased with NND (does not need to breath) so unless the barriers in question are airtight they have no affect anyway.

 

Remember, AOE any area (hexes) can be used to model a very accurate spray of automatic weapon fire. The point of origin in this case is still the gun, not anywhere IN the AOE.

 

NND will not allow you to ignore barriers: if I have a microwave gun that heats up water, it does not mean that I can fire it through a dry stone wall and hit what is on the other side, ignoring the intervening barrier - I need indirect for that.

 

The vacuum attack you describe can ignore defences the character has but cannot ignore defences obtained by location: read the text for the Conforming advantage to AoE on p250 of 5ER, which clarifies: normal AoEs expand to their limits and, if blocked, effect what they are blocked by: a normal NND attack cannot effect 'scenery' because it does not do BODY damage.

 

I think that this clarification as to how AoE works makes quite a difference, and means that if you want it to work in a different way, you need to pay more points if that conveys an advantage. SFX don't modify the way powers work except in minor, and balanced, ways. This seems like quite a major modification and has no balance.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

NND will not allow you to ignore barriers: if I have a microwave gun that heats up water, it does not mean that I can fire it through a dry stone wall and hit what is on the other side, ignoring the intervening barrier - I need indirect for that.

 

The vacuum attack you describe can ignore defences the character has but cannot ignore defences obtained by location: read the text for the Conforming advantage to AoE on p250 of 5ER, which clarifies: normal AoEs expand to their limits and, if blocked, effect what they are blocked by: a normal NND attack cannot effect 'scenery' because it does not do BODY damage.

 

I think that this clarification as to how AoE works makes quite a difference, and means that if you want it to work in a different way, you need to pay more points if that conveys an advantage. SFX don't modify the way powers work except in minor, and balanced, ways. This seems like quite a major modification and has no balance.

 

You missed or ignored the qualifier in my previous post. I said that unless the barrier is airtight the NND Gas attack AOE would be unaffected. This is just an interpretation of sfx.

 

Example: A Wooden Fence is between characters armed with guns and gas grenades. The grenaded does not necessarily need to be thrown OVER the fence to affect the target (if the AOE is big enough). This is totally seperate from the fence's affect on normal gunfire.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Yeppers. It depends on the SFX of the attack.

 

In some of those cases I would give the attack a "pseudo-indirect" for free. If you have a gas attack and are using it for the "pseudo-indirect" effect and Tempest wafts into the room and blows it all back in your direction with her WindBlast...well that's just tough noogies.

 

For most attacks, unless Tempest had a very cleverly built missile reflection, or somesuch, the waft power would not have time to effect an instant attack, so there is no balance at all: and if the attack was built so that it could be wafted about by others - if it was a constant effect, for example, that might be logical - then that would be worth a limitation on the cost of the power, if it was built properly, not a bonus on the effect of AoE as some sort of reward for NOT thinking the power through properly.

 

I'm getting better at appreciating sfx, but I tend to be a bit of a stickler for the balance aspect, and I can't see it here.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

You missed or ignored the qualifier in my previous post. I said that unless the barrier is airtight the NND Gas attack AOE would be unaffected. This is just an interpretation of sfx.

 

Example: A Wooden Fence is between characters armed with guns and gas grenades. The grenaded does not necessarily need to be thrown OVER the fence to affect the target (if the AOE is big enough). This is totally seperate from the fence's affect on normal gunfire.

 

Ignore you? NEVER!

 

My point is though that there is a world of difference in the mechanics of the system between a personally generated defence - which would normally include force walls - and a bit of scenery...most importantly an NND cannot circumvent scenery. Whilst the ability of a gas sfx AoE attack to circumvent a wooden wall full of bullet holes is a matter of the purest logic, that same pure logic needs to be applied to the build rather than just assumed in the sfx and, IMO, if an explosive grenade cannot circumvent the wall then neither can the gas grenade, at least without further advantages.

 

SFX can only give minor advantages and bonuses, and then only if they are balanced by minor disadvantages and penalties: where is the balance?

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

For most attacks, unless Tempest had a very cleverly built missile reflection, or somesuch, the waft power would not have time to effect an instant attack, so there is no balance at all: and if the attack was built so that it could be wafted about by others - if it was a constant effect, for example, that might be logical - then that would be worth a limitation on the cost of the power, if it was built properly, not a bonus on the effect of AoE as some sort of reward for NOT thinking the power through properly.

 

I'm getting better at appreciating sfx, but I tend to be a bit of a stickler for the balance aspect, and I can't see it here.

 

Assuming that the ability to be 'wafted' is built with Change Environment it could certainly be used to affect the following:

 

Knockout-Gas Arrow: EB 3d6, NND (Life Support: Self Contained Breathing, Life Support: Immunity Chemical Warfare Agents; +1), Area Of Effect (5" Radius; +1), Continuous (+1) (60 Active Points); 6 Continuing Charges lasting 1 Turn each (-1/4), Can Be Missile Deflected (-1/4)

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

It is also interesting to note that the description of NND does not specifically say that it can be used to ignore Fore Walls. Funny what you assume is there, isn't it. I really should read that book properly one day.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Ignore you? NEVER!

 

My point is though that there is a world of difference in the mechanics of the system between a personally generated defence - which would normally include force walls - and a bit of scenery...most importantly an NND cannot circumvent scenery. Whilst the ability of a gas sfx AoE attack to circumvent a wooden wall full of bullet holes is a matter of the purest logic, that same pure logic needs to be applied to the build rather than just assumed in the sfx and, IMO, if an explosive grenade cannot circumvent the wall then neither can the gas grenade, at least without further advantages.

 

SFX can only give minor advantages and bonuses, and then only if they are balanced by minor disadvantages and penalties: where is the balance?

 

That's fine as long as the GM explains this hard-line type of rules interpretation clearly during character creation. To do otherwise would disenchant most players and cause them to be disenchanted with HERO for what amounts to bad GMing.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Assuming that the ability to be 'wafted' is built with Change Environment it could certainly be used to affect the following:

 

Knockout-Gas Arrow: EB 3d6, NND (Life Support: Self Contained Breathing, Life Support: Immunity Chemical Warfare Agents; +1), Area Of Effect (5" Radius; +1), Continuous (+1) (60 Active Points); 6 Continuing Charges lasting 1 Turn each (-1/4), Can Be Missile Deflected (-1/4)

 

Not on the face of it, no. Logically it can, but we mustn't fall into the trap of thinking that the mechanics of Hero are like real world physics and we can reason from basic principles. On the face of ithe build, the person with the power continues to control it throughout the duration, as you have built it: you shoud build it with No Conscious Control at the -1 level if you want a gas grenade to be 'real' - then you can control it only to the extent that you can set it going - what happens to it then is out of your hands.

 

You might also simulate the effect you are after by defining the gas (not just the arrow) as a universally applicable focus. That though, would mean that the character still retained control of the gas on his phases but other characters could effect it on theirs.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

That's fine as long as the GM explains this hard-line type of rules interpretation clearly during character creation. To do otherwise would disenchant most players and cause them to be disenchanted with HERO for what amounts to bad GMing.

 

Well, you may see it as a hard line. Personally I think the player gets more out of the character if they put more in, and it is a shame to have such a powerful tool as Hero and simply not use its subtleties and fine control.

 

When I GM I discuss builds with players and I will point out at that stage if I feel that the expressed concept/sfx does not matach the build they present. In any event, if they do not get what they want I have no problem with them redesigning the character to more exactly match their vision. When I am playing I feel it is incumbent on me to try and get it right, even if only from a sense of personal satisfaction.

 

I do know this: players who DO spend a lot of time getting it right will certainly be disenchanted if another player gets a grab bag of freebies just becasue it fits their sfx.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Not on the face of it, no. Logically it can, but we mustn't fall into the trap of thinking that the mechanics of Hero are like real world physics and we can reason from basic principles. On the face of ithe build, the person with the power continues to control it throughout the duration, as you have built it: you shoud build it with No Conscious Control at the -1 level if you want a gas grenade to be 'real' - then you can control it only to the extent that you can set it going - what happens to it then is out of your hands.

 

You might also simulate the effect you are after by defining the gas (not just the arrow) as a universally applicable focus. That though, would mean that the character still retained control of the gas on his phases but other characters could effect it on theirs.

 

Maybe you do need to read the book. :D

 

NCC has no bearing on this build:

 

No Conscious Control

(Hero System Fifth Edition Rule Book, page 196; Revised, page 301)

 

A power with this Limitation is not under the character's control. Although the character possesses the Power, he cannot consciously activate or use it. The Power only turns on when the GM chooses.

 

The fact that it's already built using focus and charges makes taking NCC as an additional limitation seem like double-dipping and uneccessary.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Maybe you do need to read the book. :D

 

NCC has no bearing on this build:

 

No Conscious Control

(Hero System Fifth Edition Rule Book, page 196; Revised, page 301)

 

A power with this Limitation is not under the character's control. Although the character possesses the Power, he cannot consciously activate or use it. The Power only turns on when the GM chooses.

 

...or if you read the bit about the version at the -1 limitation level a bit further down the page...a character can turn it on and off at will , but cannot control the effects while it is on.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

 

The fact that it's already built using focus and charges makes taking NCC as an additional limitation seem like double-dipping and uneccessary.

 

Not wishing to be too picky, but it was not built with the focus limtation, and, as I tried in my rambling and inadequate manner to explain, the fact that you build the GAS as a universal focus does not take away your ability to control your own power - it just allows others to as well, which is markedly different from the NCC build. You can certainly justify both.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Well, you may see it as a hard line. Personally I think the player gets more out of the character if they put more in, and it is a shame to have such a powerful tool as Hero and simply not use its subtleties and fine control.

 

When I GM I discuss builds with players and I will point out at that stage if I feel that the expressed concept/sfx does not matach the build they present. In any event, if they do not get what they want I have no problem with them redesigning the character to more exactly match their vision. When I am playing I feel it is incumbent on me to try and get it right, even if only from a sense of personal satisfaction.

 

I do know this: players who DO spend a lot of time getting it right will certainly be disenchanted if another player gets a grab bag of freebies just becasue it fits their sfx.

 

This is where player's familiarity (or lack thereof) with HERO can be a blessing and a curse. Ultimately, the rules must serve the roleplaying experience and not everyone can accurately model all sfx in HERO in 4 hours or less (I know I can't!). Yes, I personally love the complex builds but I at the extreme within my gaming group. The average gamers just want enough to roleplay with and move on.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Gas grenades are uncontrolled continuous 0 end, disipateed by wind.

 

In a encolsed room they do not go away. ever

 

Yes indeed: uncontrolled powers need some way to turn them off, but constant powers do not, and even then, an uncontrolled power (uncontrolled being an advantage of course) does not allow others to control the power - just to end it if they can meet the right condition. The person with the power retains control of an uncontrolled power - they just don't need to maintain it. Bit of an odd name really. Should be called 'No maintenance'

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

Not wishing to be too picky' date=' but it was not built with the focus limtation, and, as I tried in my rambling and inadequate manner to explain, the fact that you build the GAS as a universal focus does not take away your ability to control your own power - it just allows others to as well, which is markedly different from the NCC build. You can certainly justify both.[/quote']

 

Oh, my bad. Let me post the Multipower Reserve in which that arrow was a slot in:

 

24 Aoi Bow & Arrows: Multipower, 60-point reserve, (60 Active Points); all slots OAF (-1), Arrangement (-1/4), Limited Power: Range Based On Strength (Maximum Range = 150") Power loses about a fourth of its effectiveness ; -1/4)

 

The slot cost 2 real as posted and would only cost 1 real with NCC.

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Re: Indirect discussion

 

I thought NND got to ignore all defenses except its nemesis. So I would have thought it ignores Force Walls and even architectural walls (as in your earlier microwave example).

 

 

I didn't realize NNDs cannot "circumvent scenery". If one rock wall is scenery and another is conjured (i.e. Force Wall), they act differently?

 

Oh well, not in my game.

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