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A Problem of Dissatisfaction


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Ok, I’ve been gaming for many moons, and GM-ing for many of those, and I’ve run into a problem that I just can’t deal with, and turn to you Herodom to help. I have never really run a super’s game before and I think that’s at the crux of my problem… also in my group there are 2 newbie, 1 with some experience, and 2 with a bit of Rp time, oh and one that reads WAY more comics than I ever did. The set up; A teen champions that I’m running on 350 points, I know a lot for a Teen game, but I wanted more of the Teen Titans feel than the “true” teen champions. Number two I built the brick with the Multiform, and didn’t think to limit him on the multiform points, so his “hero” form is close to double everyone else’s. Ok, now I’ve got an energy projector, a speedster (who is having a hell of a time getting up to par in combat due to it being just damned expensive just to make a speedster), a mentalist, and two bricks, one of the Hulk variety (that’s the expensive one), and one closer to a Cap. America. My campaign world is with supers having been tried several times, however it’s been bad, so the government has covered it up, and tried to suppress the new supers that emerge. So they are the first supers in a way.

Problem number one, is I’m having trouble challenging them evenly, the Brick is just too much…. And problem number two is the Cap clone is feeling like a double, and getting put out. Also one big thing is he says it’s more like a science fiction story with superpowers added in. His dissatisfaction grew when I put them against Grond. Everything went well (the combat was a bit short to be honest) until they found out that he was an experiment gone wrong (I’m not sure if this is Cannon) but I said he was part of a police program that he willingly participated in, however that program went wrong… The Cap. clone wanted to save Grond, but they had no resources, and was unwilling to give him back to the cops, however there was no place to put him… in the long run this seemed to sour his taste for the game saying that I‘m putting too much stress on a group of teenagers, and now I’m trying to figure out what to do… I texed my group last night and told them I quit, however I think I was being frustrated… so I don’t know…

My possibilities so far.

1. Lower the point total to normal Teen Champions points and point limitations.

2. Make them all adults.

3. Scrap it, and start over.

4. Quit.

It seems I’ve chosen the number four so far, and I know disappointed four of the other players… so I turn to you all to see what I can do.

-Woof

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

Or you could force the multiform brick to rewrite his 700 pts. multiform to conform to the campaign limits.

 

Alternatively, you can create hunters against the multiform brick that are at a similar level. Hulk, himself, had all kinds of folks after him after he started smashing stuff.

 

If your speedster has Enter the Speed Zone, tell him or her to consult the forums, ESZ can easily dominate "hostile social interactions."

 

Not sure what the character concepts are, but traditionally Bricks smash really hard targets one and a time, martial artist types tend to mow throw multiple combats of lower level.

 

If you don't want to force a rewrite, then you may instead rewrite your antagonists such that they're better able to deal with the uber brick, mental entangles, power drains, teleport/flight usuable as an attack, telekinesis all these things give bricks fits.

 

Then again, if you don't want to do it, no sense in doing it.

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

I think part of the problem is not with the mechanics of how characters are built, but with the assumptions of the campaign "tone."

 

Not wanting to turn Grond over to the authorities is an issue that has little to do with any imbalance of power among the player characters or between them and their opponents. "It feels like science fiction with superpowers" is also not likely to be addressed just by cutting points.

 

I have often seen "talk to your players!" advised and I agree it's good advice. Starting over with more input might be a good idea.

 

What happenned with Grond is a problem I think a lot of people have fallen into - you made your villain a victim, which motivates the heroes to want to HELP him, not just DEFEAT him, and you did not write into your scenario any way for them to help him. Of course, you never considered that they would want to; but now you know something you didn't before about how your players react to things.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary did what?

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

Or you could force the multiform brick to rewrite his 700 pts. multiform to conform to the campaign limits.

 

It's been talked about... and was a possability.

 

Alternatively, you can create hunters against the multiform brick that are at a similar level. Hulk, himself, had all kinds of folks after him after he started smashing stuff.

 

Something I was going to introduce in the next game or two, the players know this.

 

If your speedster has Enter the Speed Zone, tell him or her to consult the forums, ESZ can easily dominate "hostile social interactions."

 

We're trying to work on that... as a mid level we gave him the "Rapid Target Analysis" from TUS- Basicly Find weakness 11- That's worked for the speedster.

 

Not sure what the character concepts are, but traditionally Bricks smash really hard targets one and a time, martial artist types tend to mow throw multiple combats of lower level.

 

I know, Don't know if he does.

 

If you don't want to force a rewrite, then you may instead rewrite your antagonists such that they're better able to deal with the uber brick, mental entangles, power drains, teleport/flight usuable as an attack, telekinesis all these things give bricks fits.

 

That's what I've been doing, but they don't like it apperently.

 

Then again, if you don't want to do it, no sense in doing it.

 

I know, but I really don't want to just give up, I like a good challenge, but when do you determine your in the middle of a Kobayashi Maru (a no-win scenario)?

 

 

Generally it is assumed that when you make a multiform, the different forms have to be bilt on the same guidelines as the original

CES

 

{sigh} I know, I'm just way to use to my old group, whitch had almost 20 years RP experience for each player roughly 100 years total... and I'm use to them being able to handle large point differentials, because the story is more important than the PC's points or strict "by the system" compatibility, but I think I just asked to much from a "green" group. the "teen" genre is also pretty RP intensive... and that may have been a mistake.

 

I'm trying to get my group to sign in and talk on here, but it's slow going... I think I got the brick reading it.

-Woof

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

{sigh} I know, I'm just way to use to my old group, whitch had almost 20 years RP experience for each player roughly 100 years total... and I'm use to them being able to handle large point differentials, because the story is more important than the PC's points or strict "by the system" compatibility, but I think I just asked to much from a "green" group. the "teen" genre is also pretty RP intensive... and that may have been a mistake.

 

I'm trying to get my group to sign in and talk on here, but it's slow going... I think I got the brick reading it.

-Woof

Sounds to me like you've pegged both your problem and a solution right here. I know I've had SERIOUS difficulties dealing with the fact that my old crew of 733+ Hero players, most of whom I'd been playing with from 1st Ed Champions onwards, are never coming back. These boards have helped. A LOT. Its given me a community of folk who can geek out and play with the system as much as we used to. Before I found the boards, I almost gave up, because there was such a huge gap between what I wanted to do and what the player available to me COULD do. Not that they were bad players, but none had ever touched the system before and a lot of it felt like some kind of Math Voodoo to them.

I'd talk to them aboout a reboot/restart, and STRONGLY encourage them to join the boards and go ahead and ask all sorts of dumb questions. We're a helpful lot, and will more than happlily discuss builds, game philosophy, underlying asssumptions, tactics, or just answer questions from the confused.

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

I think part of the problem is not with the mechanics of how characters are built, but with the assumptions of the campaign "tone."

 

Not wanting to turn Grond over to the authorities is an issue that has little to do with any imbalance of power among the player characters or between them and their opponents. "It feels like science fiction with superpowers" is also not likely to be addressed just by cutting points.

 

I have often seen "talk to your players!" advised and I agree it's good advice. Starting over with more input might be a good idea.

 

What happenned with Grond is a problem I think a lot of people have fallen into - you made your villain a victim, which motivates the heroes to want to HELP him, not just DEFEAT him, and you did not write into your scenario any way for them to help him. Of course, you never considered that they would want to; but now you know something you didn't before about how your players react to things.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary did what?

 

This is what I'm getting at, I asked the players to talk to eachother and figure out what they want, and get back to me with that information, so I can do something that will figure out how to make everyone happy, or satisfied at least. But it's proving hard to get them together... {sigh}.

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

Sounds to me like you've pegged both your problem and a solution right here. I know I've had SERIOUS difficulties dealing with the fact that my old crew of 733+ Hero players, most of whom I'd been playing with from 1st Ed Champions onwards, are never coming back. These boards have helped. A LOT. Its given me a community of folk who can geek out and play with the system as much as we used to. Before I found the boards, I almost gave up, because there was such a huge gap between what I wanted to do and what the player available to me COULD do. Not that they were bad players, but none had ever touched the system before and a lot of it felt like some kind of Math Voodoo to them.

I'd talk to them aboout a reboot/restart, and STRONGLY encourage them to join the boards and go ahead and ask all sorts of dumb questions. We're a helpful lot, and will more than happlily discuss builds, game philosophy, underlying asssumptions, tactics, or just answer questions from the confused.

 

Nice, I think that's what I'm going to... Yah the Brick says he's finally found it, and likes the responces, and my Wife has an account, but she won't talk much, thinking I'll do all the talking, but I think I can ween her onto the boards... Especally if I tell her it will get the game going again. Thanks all.

-Woof.

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

I don't think you need to scrap the concept, though you will probably need to reboot.

 

A couple of things I "think" may help.

 

In a Teen Champs game with a "team" which is what I think your are running there is a little more fleshing out needed than a standard supers game.

 

1) the supers are a group of teenagers and in almost every series or anime that has that concept there is always an older (adult) somebody in the know and providing guidance. I would generate NPC's for the role.

 

2) You noted that they didn't have facilities. Once again most time they are being guided/supported by someone/something and will generally have a base of some type, schools and so on. So generate the school/base/headquarters of the "group/person/organization" that is supporting them.

 

"We need to hide Grond till we can figure something out!"

"I don't know, but hey! Do you remember the old storerooms on level 5? Know one would look there!"

 

The big thing for me is that in a Teen game I generally have the support structure type stuff in the background. I mean in the Teen Titans animated series, they have a base. But it is never explained where they got it. Unlike adult super groups, repairs and cost are just glossed over as if not important. I consider that part of the teen genre and don't worry about player points.

 

But that is just me ;)

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

The way to deal with player frustration over limited options (in this case, not knowing what to do with Grond) is to roll with what they come up with. If they want to send him to counseling, give it a real shot at working. If they want to find a way of undoing what was done, expedite the process. Show them that challenges can be overcome. Don't let them trap themselves in no win situations.

 

Have a talk with the player of the overpowered character, and ask him to either power down or to let go of the character and re-write a more approriately scaled character. If he rewrites, then the initial character could potentially become an NPC.

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

Wolf,

 

I'd put all the point-values and number-crunching aside for the moment, sit down with the group and throw out a few questions:

 

What do you want from a Teen Champions campaign?

 

What things are fun / should happen?

 

What things are not fun / should not happen?

 

Try to answer them yourself first and see if what you want and what your players want match. If not, you may have to scrap the campaign. If they do, or if you can come to a consensus on the campaign direction, then start looking at what has happened and what needs to change.

 

Good luck and happy gaming!

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

Ok, I think I have it taken care of. I still need to talk it over with two of the other players, but as of now we have decided that an adult game would be better for the group we have. And point totals on par with champions... in the champions universe. So we're just doing a Reformat, and Restart. Thank you all for your help, it's been a huge help.

-Woof

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

A quick Question: What Page and book are the point limitations and restraints for Champions Unv. on... or at least where are they. as in Active point limits, attack point limits, Defensive powers limits... ETC.

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Re: A Problem of Dissatisfaction

 

Champions Universe - p.28, CU Characteristics Standard

- p.114, Campaign Guidelines & Standards

Hero 5th Revised -- page28, Character Types Guidelines Table & Character Ability Guidelines Table

Hopefully this will help. Good luck w/the new campaign.

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