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GM Joe

Need More HERO

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Yes. the 1E character sheets were a modified two collumn layout rather than three.

 My character binder is in storage, so I can't fish out the sheets (and honestly it's been a couple of decades and they have probably adhered to the inside of those old style vinyl sheet protectors.) But I will see what I can dig up.


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On October 15, 2018 at 7:13 PM, zslane said:

 Little did I know when I bought it, that I'd bought the best RPG system ever invented (you can't tell that from the artwork, unfortunately).


You know, you bring up a very interesting point, Z.


I had no idea at the time just how we would learn to manipulate the system to make whatever we wanted (science fiction!  Yay! :D), but looking back....


looking back through that 20/20 hindsight everyone is so familiar with, I almost think that subtly, had you been looking for context and reference more than for the entertainment the words promised-- that the artwork _did_ make the vastness of the system very clear:


Here's a basic form.  It's shaped nicely, and you can tell what it is.  But there isn't a lot of detail.  That's something you have to fill in for yourself.  How do you see this character, ultimately?  You have to put in the personality; you have to add the colors and the highlights and decide if those are the muscles of a work-a-day routine or rippling sinews from extreme scientific training.  That's up to you, because it's not really clear just looking at it.  You decide.



Very much what the system inside is all about.  :lol:



(No; I don't think there was any intentional reference or link between the art and substance of the game, but by the same token, I don't think there is any validity to such interpretations taken from literature, either. )



On May 26, 2017 at 5:40 PM, dsatow said:


Personally, I think they should make two small rules books.  



I know this post above is really old, but consider picking up a spare copy of MHI and ripping it in half.  They managed to get the rules down to 70-ish pages, once you ditch the flavor stuff and the "what is an RPG" blurbs.



7 hours ago, GM Joe said:

The figures on the 1e sheets are much larger.

I'm not sure of the policy on posting scanned images of character sheets, so I'll try to take some photos to post tonight.



To be honest, I think they all state "permission granted to copy for personal use."  So, if I were submitting a villain for use in your campaign....


(Is there one of these : :D  with little horns on it? ;)


54 minutes ago, Genma said:



Thanks, Genma!


So then--


1e used the very same sheets at 2e, is that what I'm given to understand?




Folks, we still use those sheets.  As I mentioned, none of us can draw.  We've had artists come and go over the years, but buy and large, none of us ever could draw.  The solution, with the advent of computer tech, was to scan that sheet and blank out the character portrait section.  Then scan (and enlarge) each portrait to about 3/4 of a page and save them as separate files.  We did this for the sheets from all versions that had portrait mannequins, and from other games-- Superworld and a few others.  Gad, don't make me remember the Elfquest portraits: "Wow!  Your guy has really broad shoulders and a ginormous head!  Why is that?"  :rofl:


Decide what your characters colors are, print the large mannequin in a grossly conflicting color, "draw" your guy on top of it, scan it and use photoshop to "erase" all instances of the outline (easy, if you've used a vibrant and wrong color).  Slide it into the blank sheet and reduce it to fit.  Then print.  Then make it smaller and slip it onto the form for the paper dolls (what we have always called the cut-out paper miniatures; sorry), repeat into four or five blanks so you have some spares, and print that on card stock.


Still doesn't look like you can draw, but it's not bad, and you don't get those watermelon shoulders that HeroMachine was so fond of.


But back on topic- - am I correct?  Are the 1e and 2e sheets identical?  If so, I'm golden!  If not, then I have to track down a new set of mannequins.... :lol:


Oh-- almost forgot: the game logo at the top of the blank sheet is blank, as is the Characteristics Block.  The GM will tell you which Characteristics Block this game is using and you drop that into place.  (6e got rid of some Characteristics, yet we felt the game actually needed a few more, here and there, to suit the genre).  Drag and drop the appropriate logo from the "scanned Genre Book Logos" file so you have a custom-kitted sheet for Star HERO, Horror HERO, or what-have-you (for Justice, Inc we used the logo scanned from the campaign book and then colored it the green from the rules book.  The shorter-and-stretched font still had the right style, and it fit into the empty block much more nicely).  I never liked the look of the 3-column sheet, even when I was much younger, and my eyes just won't take that kind of crowing anymore.


I'd attach something, but the last computer I had PS on crapped, so all that stuff lives with one of my co-GMs for now. :(


Seriously, though-- I'm always looking for clean "heroic-looking" line art mannequins _that have permission for personal use_ by the publisher / artist.  We _really_ can't draw.  It got so bad that at one point we were cleaning up the simpler-costumed characters from the old Enemies books!  We stopped doing that when we realized that the permissions probably didn't extend beyond the character sheets as-presented. :(




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The biggest difference between the 1st and 2nd edition covers is that the rear cover of 1st edition is a continuation of the scene on the front, with Gargoyle, Flare, and armor-suit-guy (sorry, don't know his name...), whereas the rear cover of 2nd edition has the Speed Chart and the Combat Modifier table.  Of course, 1st edition was in color, while many 2nd edition covers were gray scale - although I believe that some color versions of 2nd were also printed.  A more subtle tell-tale is that, since the 1st edition rear cover art was removed with 2nd edition, the fingers of armor-suit-guy which can be seen wrapping around from the left side of the 1st edition front cover are missing on the 2nd edition cover.


There are also (that I've seen) two different 1st edition cover versions.  What I presume is the older, original version lacks the authors' names, and in the lower right corner simply shows "A HERO GAME" instead of the "HERO GAMES" logo with the Mark Williams, uh... Hero Games Dude between those two words (which is the same company logo found on the later 1st edition as well as the 2nd edition covers).


Of the two copies I have of 1st edition, one has no character sheets, and the other has only 4 out of the original 8... so if anyone scans 300-dpi versions of the original 8 character silhouettes, I'd join my voice to the choir of welcoming, appreciative cries ;-)

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You're my hero, Joe!


I can see why Ruggles preferred the 1e mannequins: they do seem a bit more "in action" as opposed to Mark Williams' in 2e, which were more "inaction."


Thanks again, Joe.  You've satisfied my curiosity about things I've wanted to know for _years_. :)


Let me know if I can ever return the favor.




In other news--


I bought a "complete boxed set" 2e last week for an unreasonable amount of money (I was going to give it to my kids, since they've developed an interest).  Picked it up at Noble Knight.


It _was_ a complete boxed set.


It was also a complete forgery.


I was very impressed.


They went to a lot of trouble, too.  I mean, I know that un-colored book covers exist.  I have owned maybe six or seven 2e books, and had never actually seen one until the internet.  But that's not the point.


I could have accepted that the "wrong-feeling" paper and covers, etc, were the results of a later, "cost saving" printing or something.  But I can't imagine it should have been on "slick" paper, any of it.


The Viper's Nest book had normal staples in it (something I have also never seen).


But the biggest give-away was that the print was thin, crisp, and clear.  Not just that, but the paper had _no_ sign of aging.  No "paper book" smell.  


And it was "printed" with toner. :lol:


I didn't mind paying a ridiculous amount of money for a beat-up complete box set as a gift.  


I don't mind buying a "complete" set that's a forgery (though I wish it had a color cover).


I'm really annoyed at paying a ridiculous amount of money for a complete forgery, however. :/


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13 minutes ago, Duke Bushido said:

I can see why Ruggles preferred the 1e mannequins: they do seem a bit more "in action" as opposed to Mark Williams' in 2e, which were more "inaction."


Thanks again, Joe.  You've satisfied my curiosity about things I've wanted to know for _years_. :)


De nada, compadre. :)



I'm really annoyed at paying a ridiculous amount of money for a complete forgery, however. ?


No kidding!  What are the folks at Noble Knight saying?

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To be fair, they are a big operation, at least in terms of inventory breadth and turnover.  And this is a book published in 81 or 2 (oh: the add insert flyer was wrong, too.  It featured, amongst other things, Foxbat thanking us for the experience points he demanded in Champions II.  I've seen that add packed into other products, like Justice, Inc, but never in a book that was published two years before Champs II hit the shelves :lol:) 


At any rate, I doubt they have someone on staff who is intimately familiar with every 35 year old product from when they themselves were buying them new. 


Forgot to mention: the book appears to have been hand bound (with staples, of course) by someone without access to the trimming machine (whose name escapes me right now) that shears the top,  bottom, and open edge to make it crisp and even.) 


I'd post the video my son made of the great unboxing, but we opened it in my daughter's room, and that sty isn't fit for exhibition :lol:



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Rusty ones, one tarnished, right? 

And not exactly like what you'd find in a desktop swing line stapler? 



That's what I had: brand new shiny staples--flat ones, not round. 


And while we're.omparing notes, has anyone ever seen an "original" map on white paper with clean, solid black lines and no grey anywhere? 


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Oh yes, the Vic Dal Chele silhouettes! I ran off a mountain of those character sheets simply to have practice of doing the colors. We found out early that you had to photocopy your “edits” ( at the time done with Pilot Razor Points and White Out) because the Prismacolor or Staedtler markers wouldn’t color over the White Out. Even those with minimal artistic skill, joined in at the table, wth a pile of colorful markers and a few comic books for “reference”’designing heroes and villains for fun and future use. Good times... good times 

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For comparison, here are photos of the books from my backup, unused boxed set of 2e. The first photo is of the Champions rulebook (complete with secondary staples still on the character sheet pullout section):




And here's Viper's Nest:


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