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Hyper-Man

The Modern Champions Villains books and other goodies

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After nearly 3 weeks of waiting I finally received all the books I ordered*.  I was really hoping to get them before or during my vacation LAST week. Oh well. :)

 

*For some reason the USPS decided to send the packages to Jacksonville FL then back to California between 2 cites and then finally back to JAX and finally Clearwater.  The outer box showed a LOT of travel wear and tear.

 

The Loot:

Champions Villains: Volume One, Two and Three

The Book of the Destroyer, Empress and Machine

The Ultimate Base

Star Hero (6e)

 

I'm guessing these will be the last hardback HERO books I'll see for quite a while.

 

Great production values. I'm really hoping that the Villain books will help inspire me to finish my Fantastic Four write ups of Invisible Girl, The Human Torch and The Thing.

 

Reading the Destroyer stuff has really made me rethink the many comparisons made by fans between Marvel and DC.  Specifically that the DC characters are on such a higher scale of power. I don't think it's so much the scale of power as it is the scale of advancement and experience.  Dr. Destroyer comes in just a few hundred points shy of being a 4000 point character!  FOUR THOUSAND POINTS!  I'm looking at the writeup and I can't help but think of Dr. Doom from the era of the first Secret War and the Infinity Gauntlet who challenged the Beyonder and Thanos.  The closest analogy in the DC universe to that level of power during that era was the Crisis on Infinite Earths.  It had what was arguably the Silver Age Superman who's mightyiest attacks bounced off of the Anti-Monitor.  Regardless, I've never seen the need to build ANY version of Superman that came close to costing 4000 points. I can't even imagine running or playing in a campaign on that scale of power.  It just makes the Marvel Universe (a BIG if not THE biggest influence on the Champions Universe) seem so overpowered. Would Champions Beyond (The 6e version of Galactic Champions) be necessary to run a modern Marvel campaign using Champions mechanics?

 

Thoughts and opinions welcome.

 

more to follow....

 

HM

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It depends upon whether one wants to simulate comic book abilities from a de minimis, cost-minimizing approach, or just buy the abilities straight, point-shaving be darned. I'm pretty sure I could write up a 1000 point version of Daredevil, for example, that exhaustively included his many contacts and rarely used esoteric abilities and gave him an extensive martial arts package. Bat-god, of course, could easily exceed 1500 points, given his plethora of skills, super-skills, martial arts, bases, vehicles, contacts, followers/sidekicks, etc. Pre-Crisis Superman, in addition to being able to move planets with ease and being invulnerable to thermonuclear bomb level attacks, moving at faster than light speeds, hyper senses, etc., also had a gadget pool, an enormous base, robot duplicate followers, tons of contacts, spoke plenty of languages and had an extensive skill set. If you exhaustively included every ability he ever displayed thrice, he could easily exceed 5,000 points imo.

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To answer your last question: only to the extent that you don't have the 6E Champions genre book, which essentially reprinted the optional rules from Galactic Champions for making your supers more powerful relative to their mundane environment. Using those, the other genre-specific optional rules, and a little creativity in how powers are built and utilized, I don't think it would be hard to use official Champions characters as written at just about any power level you see in Marvel or DC comics (except the conceptual entities, which IMO are just plot devices anyway).

 

(And Destroyer has a lot of points sunk into Skills, Contacts, Wealth etc. which don't directly affect his combat power.)

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Champions Beyond is a very different book to Galactic Champions. It's all background fluff, rather than subgenre assumptions. A much more interesting read, although not really any more useful to me than the other, since I don't use the official CU.

 

Champions Beyond doesn't necessarily require or imply a higher than standard power level.

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To answer your last question: only to the extent that you don't have the 6E Champions genre book, which essentially reprinted the optional rules from Galactic Champions for making your supers more powerful relative to their mundane environment. Using those, the other genre-specific optional rules, and a little creativity in how powers are built and utilized, I don't think it would be hard to use official Champions characters as written at just about any power level you see in Marvel or DC comics (except the conceptual entities, which IMO are just plot devices anyway).

 

(And Destroyer has a lot of points sunk into Skills, Contacts, Wealth etc. which don't directly affect his combat power.)

 

Thanks for the response.

 

For the record:

 

It has been years since I was involved in playing any version of Champions or HERO.

 

I am NOT an experienced GM of any system (my obsessive compulsive tendencies typically cause me to get lost in minutiae).

 

I do own the 6e Champions Genre book as well as the 6e Champions Universe but I've never been that enamored with the Champions universe stuff in general* as I have with books like Classic Enemies and CKK since they are the biggest sources of complete character builds for the genre.I learned far more about character creation for 4e from Classic Enemies than I ever did from just the the BBB.  The same goes for CKK to a lesser extent as well.  The USPD books and Champions Powers are great laundry lists for beginners but they never quite scratched the itch the same way as the villain books did.

 

*I don't think I have ever sat down and actually read the entire history sections of any of the books since I had little intention of ever running the setting. And IF I ever got the chance to play where the GM wanted to run the official setting I wouldn't know too much.  I do try very hard to be considerate player.

 

With that, I had and still have high hopes that the 6e villain books (an the 5e Books of The Destroyer & The Machine) will provide useful insights.

 

I am beginning to understand more of the newbie confusion about setting appropriate npc threat levels in a Champions setting.  I can't think of any Champions GM's I've ever played with that would actually run a game where they used the current version of Dr. D in a combat with the PC's.  And I am thinking of 2 possible ways that could even happen.  1) Longtime players create 6e updates of their legacy characters from the 80's/90's 2) New players create 700-1000+ point characters as the A-List Team that could hold their own vs. Dr. D.  Neither option seems appealing from what GM perspective I can imagine as everything would be off the normal scale everyone is so used to (example: 40 defenses! - it would take a character with at least a 20DC attack to even begin to inflict significant Stun to him - hence the earlier Beyonder & Thanos w/Gauntlet references).

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Well, if you game every weekend, earning an average 2xp a pop, and start at 350 points, going up a couple DC per year, in 4 years you will have a group of 750 point heroes who are 8DC higher than where they started. For a group that games twice a month, it takes 8 years, but that seems to be about where Dr. D is pegged. He is designed to be the toughest bad guy on the whole planet, and possibly the entire CU. As such, the PCs shouldn't be facing him one on one until they themselves are one of the strongest superhero teams on the planet.

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Well, if you game every weekend, earning an average 2xp a pop, and start at 350 points, going up a couple DC per year, in 4 years you will have a group of 750 point heroes who are 8DC higher than where they started. For a group that games twice a month, it takes 8 years, but that seems to be about where Dr. D is pegged. He is designed to be the toughest bad guy on the whole planet, and possibly the entire CU. As such, the PCs shouldn't be facing him one on one until they themselves are one of the strongest superhero teams on the planet.

 

True but the question would remain: does the campaign such teams are in adapt to the increasing power escalation?  Does anyone actually use the monster Dr. Destroyer in any combat? I'm not talking behind the scenes.

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