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Whatever happened to Panda & Raccoon?


Philip Nicholls
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Ah man...the burn.  Just being completely ignored.....

 

Pretty much.  Like Dragon Master, Beamline, Hideous, Rainbow Archer and many others, they were just.  .  .forgotten. :no:

 

I was never that attached to Panda and Raccoon--there was nothing about their powers or modus operandi that could be considered panda-like or raccoon-like, and while a raccoon motif could be quite cool for a hero or even a villain, there was no great reason for him to have a integral tail--it serves no purpose than to justify the ten points taken for the Disadvantage.  There's nothing wrong with the powersets--if fact it would be quite easy to take their builds and use them for other, more impressive characters.

 

Just my thoughts on the subject--take them as you will.

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It wouldn't surprise me, though I don't remember.

 

Steve dropped some very large bridges on several characters he (apparently) didn't care for when he took over the reigns as honcho-writer-guy.

 

Yeah... This is an aside but for a non "Iron Age" setting the Champions U. does have a surprisingly high body count particularly among heroes. 

 

That said I like the characters and they made a cameo appearance in a story arc in one of my games. I didn't have a problem with the tail. There was no big point to it but everything about a character doesn't have to have one and mutants in my game sometimes just had odd features.

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Pretty much.  Like Dragon Master, Beamline, Hideous, Rainbow Archer and many others, they were just.  .  .forgotten. :no:

 

In a number of cases the current Champions Universe has just recast older villains with new names and sometimes modified looks, backgrounds, and/or abilities. This might have been done because the company no longer has the rights to the original character. I know that was the case when Icicle was replaced by Snowblind. Or perhaps Steve Long just preferred a different take on a particular character.

 

From your examples above, Dragon Master has been replaced by another martial artist called Spirit Fist with very similar background and motivation. Ditto Hideous, whose current official analogue is known as Grotesk. Looking farther afield, the insect-based villain Hornet has almost exactly the same origin as Stinger, from the classic villain team Deathstroke. OTOH the 5E/6E version of Dragonfly is substantially different in powers and mindset from the classic Dragonfly, although in game-world continuity the change is attributed to progressive mutation. The older-edition villain Earthmaster, who gained his powers from the "Crown of Krim," clearly inspired the current villain Temblor, a member of the team called the Crowns of Krim.

 

I could probably find more examples with a little research.

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Yeah... This is an aside but for a non "Iron Age" setting the Champions U. does have a surprisingly high body count particularly among heroes. 

 

 

That's something I quite like about the official history of the Champions Universe, in contrast to the mainstream superhero comic companies. When your profession is doing battle with evil you'd expect casualties, particularly if the conflicts have been going on for generations as in the CU. Comic companies have so much invested in their characters, they rarely bump them off, and if they do they eventually bring the popular ones back from the dead. The CU's history of superhero sacrifices is IMHO more credible and gives the setting a greater sense of depth and legacy.

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The older-edition villain Earthmaster, who gained his powers from the "Crown of Krim," clearly inspired the current villain Temblor, a member of the team called the Crowns of Krim.

Interesting note (at least to me).: Earthmaster wore the Earth Crown. Temblor wears the Stone Crown. At one point in time (I believe 5E), there were both the Earth and Stone Crowns at the same time. So there's been at least a couple of evolutions of the crowns and their history.

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That's something I quite like about the official history of the Champions Universe, in contrast to the mainstream superhero comic companies. When your profession is doing battle with evil you'd expect casualties, particularly if the conflicts have been going on for generations as in the CU. Comic companies have so much invested in their characters, they rarely bump them off, and if they do they eventually bring the popular ones back from the dead. The CU's history of superhero sacrifices is IMHO more credible and gives the setting a greater sense of depth and legacy.

 

Sometimes it feels too grim and fatalistic especially the big hero slaughters like the battle of Detroit, for a "four color" game. And I say that as a person running less the four color games. Frankly, it turned me off from the official Champions Universe as it felt like it set the wrong tone.

 

Edit: I also hate "worfing" and with some of major villains it definitely feels like that's whats going on, that and/or Mary Sueism. "Capt Amazing was a wonderful, powerful force for good..before Dr. Destroyer casually murdered him, laughed and got away without a scratch because he is so awesome."

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Pretty much.  Like Dragon Master, Beamline, Hideous, Rainbow Archer and many others, they were just.  .  .forgotten. :no:

 

I was never that attached to Panda and Raccoon--there was nothing about their powers or modus operandi that could be considered panda-like or raccoon-like, and while a raccoon motif could be quite cool for a hero or even a villain, there was no great reason for him to have a integral tail--it serves no purpose than to justify the ten points taken for the Disadvantage. 

 

 

 

 Could be worse. He could have been codenamed "Tanuki".

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I suppose its more plausible and realistic, but does it accurately simulate comic books?

 

Well, it's not like all the CU characters who were killed were ones we had grown attached to. For the most part they're just names in the history of the game world leading up to the "now" that the game covers. For Marvel and DC, most of their present-day heroes are supposed to have been active only a few years, even characters who in the real world were created five to seven decades ago. Which has required repeated reboots and redefinitions of continuity.

 

OTOH there have been a few truly impactful hero and villain deaths in comics. Jean Grey. Barry Allen. Heck, all the way back to John "Menthor" Janus of the THUNDER Agents. (And yes, I'm aware of the irony that all of them were brought back from the dead in one form or another.) :rolleyes:

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Pretty much. Like Dragon Master, Beamline, Hideous, Rainbow Archer and many others, they were just. . .forgotten. :no:

 

I was never that attached to Panda and Raccoon--there was nothing about their powers or modus operandi that could be considered panda-like or raccoon-like, and while a raccoon motif could be quite cool for a hero or even a villain, there was no great reason for him to have a integral tail--it serves no purpose than to justify the ten points taken for the Disadvantage. There's nothing wrong with the powersets--if fact it would be quite easy to take their builds and use them for other, more impressive characters.

 

Just my thoughts on the subject--take them as you will.

I think Panda and Raccoon are two atypical martial artists which I like.

 

I could be very well miss reading you but I take your post to mean that Panda and Raccoon aren't point efficient.

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I suppose its more plausible and realistic, but does it accurately simulate comic books?

 

Depends on the comic books. It certainly doesn't fit golden or silver age comics, but some bronze age titles see heroes who aren't carrying their own titles die. Of course, whether they stay dead is another question... And then there is the iron age. Villains, however, have always been more, ahem, disposable.

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Of course, I also think they should have kept Bora alive and on Eurostar so what do I know, lol.

 

I tend to agree. I developed her character and got some good story-based sessions out of her. But I think a lot of groups found her design abusive / power-gamery / difficult to deal with. Without a specific power set to find and neutralize her quickly she frequently provided Eurostar -- already extremely powerful in 4e -- with an asymetrical strategic advantage on the field. Against a less viscous and murderous villain team, taking a beating and coming back for round two with a plan to deal with her is in genre and could be fun. Against Eurostar? You may well be dead and never get a second chance. The fast-moving, invisible, desolid, double-knockback blaster w. AoE TK chick was almost a master-villain in her own right. My group had one rule when fighting Eurostar: find and neutralize Bora and Mentalla with extreme prejudice, then break off into individual "niche" fights with the rest of the team...

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