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Zed-F

6th Edition Hero System

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

But to DD's point, the "GUI" sets the tone. The GUI from the original Champions on has been mechanics-heavy, reinforcing the transparent construction aspect of the game. A GUI which, for example, puts characteristics on the second page or relegates them to an inconspicuous place is likely to implicitly downplay the importance of char rolls, for example - assuming of course such downplaying is not contrary to the writing of the rules.

 

I would argue the current and generally the prior character sheets versions do reinforce the "feel" of HERO in its mechancs-heavy orientation. As a case in point, in most versions, there's no "required" space for SFX for powers (let alone skills!), it's assumed this will be done as part of text as well as, probably, the more easily maintained-in-head-space aspect.

 

The issue from my perspective therefore is one of emphasis and a proper mirroring of the priority of the ruleset. It's not about "good" or "likable," exactly.

 

One could take an interesting position of abolishing character sheets entirely (i.e., no standard set forth in the book with each PC showing different styles of doing character sheets) to stress the DIY and customizability of the system. Or as much as possible "forcing" players to the website and HD in order to encourage those aspect of character documentation.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I've seen 14th Edition. Now THAT will be absolute perfection.

 

Sadly, it is over a terabyte of text reaching the theoretical functional limits of a single human mind to contain. Luckily, it will fit on a Holographic Versatile Disc the size of a sugarcube. Plus with S.T.E.V.E., all questions are instantly adjudicated and transmitted to all other 14th editions. Which was really the problem with the ill-fated 13th edition, I mean really, the partially limited, hyper framework bought with the dangling variable advantage on the meta-control cost... whst were they thinking? :D

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I'm not sure what you mean by "no clear path" since it's

1) On the shelf

2) Describes exactly what it is on the cover

3) A suggested buy by anyone on the boards to anyone who asks what books would be a good idea to get.

 

Should we should up at gamers houses and beat them with it then?

 

I mean if Sidekick is the "basic" HERO, how do you grow from basic to advanced? Sidekick is an afterthought and probably not doing well because of it. There is little in the way of Sidekick-Specific-Material and no real "upgrade-path". It's not like MERP->Rolemaster.

 

But I'm on the bandwagon that mechanically there's nothing wrong wihth HERO 5. The *only* problem I see is that the BigBlackBook is a beast for new players and I merely wonder if there's a way to regain some of the elegance of earlier HERO products...

 

-shnar

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I mean if Sidekick is the "basic" HERO' date=' how do you grow from basic to advanced?[/quote']You play around with it for a while until you get the hang of how the basics of the system work, then -- if you dig it -- you get the big book and upgrade. If there was a bunch of "Sidekick Specific Material," that wouldn't be an "upgrade path"... that would be a alternate parallel track.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

You play around with it for a while until you get the hang of how the basics of the system work' date=' then -- if you dig it -- you get the big book and upgrade. If there was a bunch of "Sidekick Specific Material," that wouldn't be an "upgrade path"... that would be a alternate parallel track.[/quote']

 

Much like the MERP and Rolemaster parallel tracks...

 

;)

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Sidekick is a great intro to HERO, but I've been a Sidekick flag-waver since the playtest. Indeed it is that Sidekick is not the "basic" HERO game while 5ER is "advanced". I'd go so far as to say that Sidekick is one of the most versatile products HERO sells.

 

The rules in Sidekick are repeated in 5ER. The rules that appear solely in 5ER are those which expand and detail as many situations and contexts that Steve and Darren could dream up. As a player, someone can make a character, advance that character, learn HERO system, then ultimately develop and GM a fully-fleshed campaign solely with Sidekick.

 

Which begs an obvious question, why bother with the hardback rulebook? Personally, I feel both products are well worth owning. It's not a case of "either-or", but of "both-and". The big ol' rulebook adds not only situational applications of the rules, but tons of examples of builds, and characters, and advice... Things that may be intimidating (not to mention HEAVY) for someone who is just learning the game.

 

There is no need for an "upgrade path" because Sidekick is the HERO system.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I can see your point' date=' though I'm a bit of an odd duck. I've generally used my own sheets for most games that I've played. I used Champions sheets more than ones from any other game, but that was mostly because of the character sketch "dummys" that were on them.[/quote']

 

And why I say that the character sheet can be important. I loved the original character sheets because of the outlines that could be used to get a real superhero feel tothe sheet.

 

It shows that even such a small personalisation touch can convince a rugged individualist to use the 'official' character sheet.

 

Though as far as character sheets go' date=' Hero Designer is already one of the best purchases they can make after the core rule book. And it already has a lot of custom sheets that ship with it.[/quote']

 

No arguments there. I think there needs to be a big push to get as many different output formats available for HD users - that allows so much variety for people using the game.

 

 

Doc

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

One could take an interesting position of abolishing character sheets entirely (i.e.' date=' no standard set forth in the book with each PC showing different styles of doing character sheets) to stress the DIY and customizability of the system. Or as much as possible "forcing" players to the website and HD in order to encourage those aspect of character documentation.[/quote']

 

That would be interesting. Was any of this addressed in the Character Creation Handbook? I wouldn't think so as it was more of a consolidation publication than something new...

 

If there was an almost blank sheet that had a few dedicated spaces for those things that are necessary during a game (CV, defences, STUN, END) and then some nice structured empty space where people could write what they wanted in there.

 

A character sheet toolkit for the ultimate gaming toolkit. :) I like it...

 

 

Doc

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Which begs an obvious question' date=' why bother with the hardback rulebook? Personally, I feel both products are well worth owning. It's not a case of "either-or", but of "both-and". The big ol' rulebook adds not only situational applications of the rules, but tons of examples of builds, and characters, and advice... Things that may be intimidating (not to mention HEAVY) for someone who is just learning the game.[/quote']

 

Which brings us back to the point I've been trying to make all along. FRed is just too damn big and should be split up. And I think SideKick is the way to do it. If SideKick *is* HERO, then why have FREd at all, and just have companion books to SideKick for the missing pieces?

 

-shnar

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Which brings us back to the point I've been trying to make all along. FRed is just too damn big and should be split up. And I think SideKick is the way to do it. If SideKick *is* HERO, then why have FREd at all, and just have companion books to SideKick for the missing pieces?

 

-shnar

 

Combat Handbook + Character Creation Handbook = 5ER.

 

Looks like they're doing that.

 

Sidekick is a good introduction of the rules. And I believe sales for it are doing just fine. It has gotten not only a reprint, but a Revised. Which is more than I can say for a number of "important" Hero books to date.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I use Sidekick to bring in players new to Hero; I loan them a copy, they learn the system, they return it and buy 5ER. Mission accomplished. :)

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Sidekick is a great intro to HERO, but I've been a Sidekick flag-waver since the playtest. Indeed it is that Sidekick is not the "basic" HERO game while 5ER is "advanced". I'd go so far as to say that Sidekick is one of the most versatile products HERO sells.

 

The rules in Sidekick are repeated in 5ER. The rules that appear solely in 5ER are those which expand and detail as many situations and contexts that Steve and Darren could dream up. As a player, someone can make a character, advance that character, learn HERO system, then ultimately develop and GM a fully-fleshed campaign solely with Sidekick.

 

Which begs an obvious question, why bother with the hardback rulebook? Personally, I feel both products are well worth owning. It's not a case of "either-or", but of "both-and". The big ol' rulebook adds not only situational applications of the rules, but tons of examples of builds, and characters, and advice... Things that may be intimidating (not to mention HEAVY) for someone who is just learning the game.

 

There is no need for an "upgrade path" because Sidekick is the HERO system.

The disad of Sidekick is 2-fold, in my mind.

 

1 - it doesn't give a lot of "how to build" stuff, by which I mean building powers and the like, which to me is the most important part and if done correctly can replace (not add to) a lot of what is in the rules - now given it's more like a sort of player's handbook, I understand this, but divorces it from being a truly "basic HERO rules book"

 

2 - it does leave important stuff out - not a lot, but stuff that at least as far as I know shows up in campaign after campaign and is not really so optional - or if it is optional, then we should really revisit the rules, IMHO, and make the break. I'm referring primarily to Damage Reduction and VPP. And if neither is "really basic," I contend maybe we shouldn't have them. But I'm not really going there - I"m just saying that they belong in the rules or not, they shouldn't be blackballed from basic rules but in advanced rules - or if they are, there ought to be some real explanation as to how and why these are derived from the basic rules

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

That would be interesting. Was any of this addressed in the Character Creation Handbook? I wouldn't think so as it was more of a consolidation publication than something new...

 

If there was an almost blank sheet that had a few dedicated spaces for those things that are necessary during a game (CV, defences, STUN, END) and then some nice structured empty space where people could write what they wanted in there.

 

A character sheet toolkit for the ultimate gaming toolkit. :) I like it...

 

 

Doc

I haven't read the character creation handbook, so can't say, sorry.

 

I guess in many ways I see HERO as a osrt of hgiher-level/more purposeful FUDGE, if you will, and so I tend to believe it should be more like that and be a true toolkit. Especially if in fact HERO is supposed to be the "ultimate gamer's toolkit."

 

But I still also think there should be "Built using HERO" games. Sort of like how Spirit of the Century was built on FATE which is built on FUDGE. I realize this is a fundamental disagreement from DOJ, though, and not going to happen.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Combat Handbook + Character Creation Handbook = 5ER.

 

Looks like they're doing that.

 

Sidekick is a good introduction of the rules. And I believe sales for it are doing just fine. It has gotten not only a reprint, but a Revised. Which is more than I can say for a number of "important" Hero books to date.

But the trouble for DOJ for Sidekick "as is" is that it's not a direct moneymaker, it's offered (or at least was, haven't looked) at a deliberately lower price to bring on people. Of course, I'm not suggesting anything at all is wrong with that, per se, except that if DOJ were to depend more on Sidekick as the core rulebook, this would have to be taken into consideration.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

But the trouble for DOJ for Sidekick "as is" is that it's not a direct moneymaker' date=' it's offered (or at least was, haven't looked) at a deliberately lower price to bring on people. Of course, I'm not suggesting anything at all is wrong with that, per se, except that if DOJ were to depend more on Sidekick as the core rulebook, this would have to be taken into consideration.[/quote']

 

I don't believe DoJ relies on Sidekick as a core money maker or a core rulebook.

 

I think they look at it for what it is - a cheap introduction to the Hero System, specifically the core concepts of creating and running a Hero Game.

 

The system has a number of layers to it. You can run simple games to intensely complex games - look at the new rules for SFX interaction in Energy Projector; they can add a whole new level to a game without changing the core rules in any way.

 

That's the beauty of Hero - you can learn parts of it (I've run entire games without VPPs) and add on as you go to expand the complexity of your game, or remove parts to simplify.

 

It's not so much "Basic" and "Advanced" as "Standard" and "Loaded With Options"

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I don't believe DoJ relies on Sidekick as a core money maker or a core rulebook.

 

I think they look at it for what it is - a cheap introduction to the Hero System, specifically the core concepts of creating and running a Hero Game.

 

The system has a number of layers to it. You can run simple games to intensely complex games - look at the new rules for SFX interaction in Energy Projector; they can add a whole new level to a game without changing the core rules in any way.

 

That's the beauty of Hero - you can learn parts of it (I've run entire games without VPPs) and add on as you go to expand the complexity of your game, or remove parts to simplify.

 

It's not so much "Basic" and "Advanced" as "Standard" and "Loaded With Options"

I didn't say DOJ coutned on Sidekick as either a core moneymaker or a core rulebook - that is exactly my point. If they want to change that, then they have to rework how it is being priced/marketed/something.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I didn't say DOJ coutned on Sidekick as either a core moneymaker or a core rulebook - that is exactly my point. If they want to change that' date=' then they have to rework how it is being priced/marketed/something.[/quote']

 

The question being - why would they want to?

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

The question being - why would they want to?

Regardless of my or your position, they "would" want to from the comment Shar made that kicked off this sub-thread. My response was to your response to his response, IF we take Shar's proposal as valid, THEN Sidekick has to be a moneymaker and a core book, and my point was simply that "as is" it cannot be. (PS, or rather, anyway, is not - DOJ has said as much as it doesn't short-term make them money - although one could argue, which I expected but did not see, that as an investment/gateway to the other books it might be justifiable - though I personally doubt it, while, don't get me wrong, I agree that it is a good gateway, I just think based on DOJ's own comments plus what it is it can't replace the full book as it stands)

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Regardless of my or your position' date=' they "would" want to from the comment Shar made that kicked off this sub-thread. My response was to your response to his response, IF we take Shar's proposal as valid, THEN Sidekick has to be a moneymaker and a core book, and my point was simply that "as is" it cannot be. (PS, or rather, anyway, is not - DOJ has said as much as it doesn't short-term make them money - although one could argue, which I expected but did not see, that as an investment/gateway to the other books it might be justifiable - though I personally doubt it, while, don't get me wrong, I agree that it is a good gateway, I just think based on DOJ's own comments plus what it is it can't replace the full book as it stands)[/quote']

 

I guess that considering I think Shnar is way off base for what the system needs I don't see making Sidekick a Core Book as useful in any manner.

 

And my response wasn't that Sidekick was a Core Book - it was that Combat Handbook and Character Creation Handbook fit the bill of what he is suggesting. The only thing missing from those two books I'm aware of is "The Environment" - which is in Sidekick in truncated form.

 

Splitting the books is, to be quite blunt, a stupid idea. One Book To Play is one of the major reasons I became a hero gamer.

 

No - I don't think it's intimidating. And I've found no evidence that the books size is what keeps people from playing the game (beyond unprovable claims by people here on the boards - and the boards is a really BAD way to get a feel for the people into the hobby).

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Splitting the books is' date=' to be quite blunt, a stupid idea. One Book To Play is one of the major reasons I became a hero gamer.[/quote']I understand that appeal too, but I've gradually come to disagree. If/when a 6th Edition rolls around, I think splitting it into at least two books will be necessary, simply due to size. One approach to doing that would be a formalization of the "Character Creation" in one book and "Everything Else" in another.

 

However, if I owned Hero Games, I'd take a different approach. I'd shorten and simplify the wording and organization of the core rules. In other words, I would make H6E much in the mold of Sidekick, but including all of the powers, frameworks, etc. Then, I'd take the more "esoteric" material (the stuff that relates to how this power interacts with that specific Advantage, or how to GM this particular circumstance), and put that into more of a "HERO System Companion" type of book.

 

I think the size of the current core rulebook does put some people off. But more importantly, IMO, I think its size and the "depth" of its content makes it considerably harder to use than it needs to be. An awful lot of 5ER is essentially devoted to providing answers in advance to questions that rarely arise.

 

There's the old maxim of "the 80% solution," which says that in any project, the first 20% of the effort will get you to the 80% completed point, and then the other 80% of the effort comes in finishing the last 20% percent of the project. I think 5ER is essentially an example of this principle in action. :) I think 20% of 5ER's content provides 80% of its utility, and the other 80% of its content provides only 20% of its utility.

 

Don't get me wrong... it's valuable to have that last 20% of utility available. I just think it would improve ease-of-use, and decrease imposingly-large scary-lookingness, to make the core rules the "80% solution" ala a sort of uber-Sidekick, and make a second volume out of the material that addresses the less-frequent corner cases and exceptions. :hex:

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

I guess that considering I think Shnar is way off base for what the system needs I don't see making Sidekick a Core Book as useful in any manner.

 

And my response wasn't that Sidekick was a Core Book - it was that Combat Handbook and Character Creation Handbook fit the bill of what he is suggesting. The only thing missing from those two books I'm aware of is "The Environment" - which is in Sidekick in truncated form.

 

Splitting the books is, to be quite blunt, a stupid idea. One Book To Play is one of the major reasons I became a hero gamer.

 

No - I don't think it's intimidating. And I've found no evidence that the books size is what keeps people from playing the game (beyond unprovable claims by people here on the boards - and the boards is a really BAD way to get a feel for the people into the hobby).

Are you directing any of this at me? I simply started with Shar's assumption without saying it's right or wrong and chimed in. I am not even making a statement in particular, I am saying TO SHAR that DOJ cannot use Sidekick as is the way he intends. By no means did I imply that you see Sidekick as a core book as useful. I know full well you don't, you've made entirely clear throughout this discussion you feel 5th as is is quite good and there is no significant change required in either mechanics or how the rules are presented. PS - and I by no means indicated you felt Sidekick was a core book.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Are you directing any of this at me? I simply started with Shar's assumption without saying it's right or wrong and chimed in. I am not even making a statement in particular' date=' I am saying TO SHAR that DOJ cannot use Sidekick as is the way he intends. By no means did I imply that you see Sidekick as a core book as useful. I know full well you don't, you've made entirely clear throughout this discussion you feel 5th as is is quite good and there is no significant change required in either mechanics or how the rules are presented. PS - and I by no means indicated you felt Sidekick was a core book.[/quote']

 

Nope, it's all to the world at large. No direction intended.

 

 

From that POV of Fifth, I wouldn't disagree that it could lose a few words, but I don't feel particularly strongly in either direction regarding that particular angle.

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

Nope, it's all to the world at large. No direction intended.

 

 

From that POV of Fifth, I wouldn't disagree that it could lose a few words, but I don't feel particularly strongly in either direction regarding that particular angle.

Okay, and sorry I was probably testy there!

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Re: 6th Edition Hero System

 

And so many of the fools out there won't just do as I say!

 

Well (rubbing hands) they'll listen as soon as I launch my DOOMSDAY DEVICE......

 

:eg:

 

(mad maniacal cackling)

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