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Suppressing Poison


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So I created an antivenom potion for a fantasy campaign by buying Dispel HKA, only against poison (-1/2). Easy enough!

 

Then it occured to me that it might be better to have a Suppress HKA for an effect that reduces the damage of a poison without completely eliminating it. But Suppress seems designed to be an attack on a character. It crossed my mind to construct it as healing, only vs. damage caused by poison, but it would take a LOT of healing to undo the damage caused by a strong poison.

 

Any thoughts?

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If you are GM and you want an anti-venom potion, then you need to dictate how a poison is constructed in your world.

 

Personally, I think it makes for more verisimilitude and an opportunity for colour if you outline a few basic types of poison and the basic anti-venoms available for each one - after all, not all poisons are alike and so it would be unusual for any particular anti-venom to have efficacy for poisons other than the one it was developed.

 

Hyperman is right that what you might want, for a universal solution, is a Transform that targets the special effect and changes someone from poisoned to unpoisoned.  Obviously physical damage caused by the poison may have to be healed separately - but there would be no further damage caused by it....

 

 

Doc

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If the poison is constructed as a continuing effect, an anti-poison build as a Dispell will stop the effect without healing the previous damage.  Then you only need enough dice to beat the Active Points of the poison rather than having to fudge the Body for a Transform. 

 

If you're simply wanting to reduce damage rather than completely negating it, you could look into Damage Reduction instead.  Again, it won't help previously accrued damage, but will reduce any ongoing effects.

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In most genre fiction, antidotes/anti-toxins are usually treated as instant, complete immunity. So yeah, "LS: vs Poisons,* 1 Continuing Charge lasting ____" is probably the easiest way to go. Any damage sustained before they take the potion remains and has to be healed normally, but they take no further damage as long as the poison's Damage Over Time runs out before the antitoxin's Continuing Charge does.

 

If you want it to reduce the effect of the poison, but not eliminate it altogether, then Drain/Suppress could work. Use Drain if it's something "instant" taken after you're poisoned to counter the effect, or Suppress if it's meant to be taken before you're poisoned and it protects you for a time period. Either way, apply the Drain/Suppress dice against the poison's AP just like it was a character's Power. Whether or not the poison gets to recover the lost points depends on sfx. Damage Reduction or Damage Negation might be simpler, again with a Continuing Charge.

 

*Or vs specific poison(s).

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Life Support 'feels' like it should be the answer but LS does not, by the rules, defend against Blast or Killing attack.

 

This is where it is necessary for the GM to control builds to ensure his world is consistent. Every attack that has poison as its special effect HAS to take the limitation of "not effective against targets with LS: poisons", limitation dependent on how prevalent those anti-toxins actually are.

 

Doc

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I build every poison-based power in my Fantasy game with AVLD as a limitation (life support vs poison negates) unless it also does some kind of trauma or system shock, as you suggest.  It makes things work more consistently (do the same thing with disease-based).  A bit of power defense also will slow or negate poison considerably if it is based on adjustment as most are.  Just a few points will turn that DOT poison into nothing unless it was purchased with the "defenses only apply once" modifier.

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Thanks for the ideas! I'd argue against Life Support being able to negate the effects of an attack. Poison is usually (I thought) written as an NND with Life Support as the special defense. Once the attack takes effect, Life Support can't undo the damage. Furthermore, in any campaign where someone has a VPP, poisons can quickly be eliminated by Life Support: Usable By Others, which is extremely cheap (especially if you can buy it as a 1-point LS for the specific poison you're targeting). This makes poison almost a non-issue. I think it's more fun to make poison and disease something that can easily be prevented in advance, but which requires a lot of points to cure after the fact--it requires the magician (or other VPP user) to make some tactical decisions.

 

In response to my original question, I get the feeling that Drain is more appropriate than Suppress for an attack that reduces the effectiveness of a poison after the fact. Would y'all agree?

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PS--I'd argue that "Transform" creates some weird effects: for example, the required power of the transform is based on the BODY of the target rather than the strength of the poison. It doesn't make a lot of sense that the mighty barbarian would be harder to unpoison than the fragile sage, so that suggests Transform isn't the right direction to go in.

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Thanks for the ideas! I'd argue against Life Support being able to negate the effects of an attack. Poison is usually (I thought) written as an NND with Life Support as the special defense. Once the attack takes effect, Life Support can't undo the damage. Furthermore, in any campaign where someone has a VPP, poisons can quickly be eliminated by Life Support: Usable By Others, which is extremely cheap (especially if you can buy it as a 1-point LS for the specific poison you're targeting). This makes poison almost a non-issue. I think it's more fun to make poison and disease something that can easily be prevented in advance, but which requires a lot of points to cure after the fact--it requires the magician (or other VPP user) to make some tactical decisions.

 

In response to my original question, I get the feeling that Drain is more appropriate than Suppress for an attack that reduces the effectiveness of a poison after the fact. Would y'all agree?

To undo damage after it has been inflicted, the appropriate Powers are Healing and Regeneration.

 

Trying to Drain or Suppress the damage dealing Power after it has dealt damage is like breaking a sword after it has cut someone. It doesn't do anything to heal the injury already inflicted.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary says if there's a poison in someone's system and you are trying to prevent FURTHER damage, Drain or Suppress might work - and so might Life Support.

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Thanks for the ideas! I'd argue against Life Support being able to negate the effects of an attack. Poison is usually (I thought) written as an NND with Life Support as the special defense. Once the attack takes effect, Life Support can't undo the damage. Furthermore, in any campaign where someone has a VPP, poisons can quickly be eliminated by Life Support: Usable By Others, which is extremely cheap (especially if you can buy it as a 1-point LS for the specific poison you're targeting). This makes poison almost a non-issue. I think it's more fun to make poison and disease something that can easily be prevented in advance, but which requires a lot of points to cure after the fact--it requires the magician (or other VPP user) to make some tactical decisions.

 

In response to my original question, I get the feeling that Drain is more appropriate than Suppress for an attack that reduces the effectiveness of a poison after the fact. Would y'all agree?

 

I would say that this is more of a critique of Usable by Others (or unlimited option VPPs) than anything else. Drain would in fact be a better than suppress, although LS likely is more appropriate. But again, it all depends on how poisons are built in your game.

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If you build poison as xd6 Drain/Blast/Killing Attack w/e, Continuous/Damage over time, I would make the "reduces the damage antivenom" as Succor whatever the defense to the damage is Power Defense/ed/red etc.  In this way, you could have an antivenom that helps but needs to be reapplied intermittently while the poison lasts. 

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