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RDU Neil

Stunned without losing STUN?

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Heo basically has four "effects" of combat damage on a character:

  • Decrease in stun or body
  • "Con Stunned" being unable to act/must recover for one action if loses more Stun than Con in a single attack
  • "Unconsciousness" in that Stun is reduced below a certain number (usually 0)
  • "Death" in that Body is reduce below a certain number (-10 or -amount of Body, etc.)

 

While not perfect,  it does a good job of providing game rule guidance for cinematic effect in play.

 

What Hero doesn't really account for is being "Stunned" (I have to shake it off before I can act!) without being closer to unconsciousness. It is one thing to "have your bell rung" by a solid shot to the chin, and a couple more like that and I'm out. Hero handles that pretty well. What about "pain" though? What about, say, "A sudden searing pain like your arm is on fire" that flares for a second... make the target jerk and lose focus and gasp... but really isn't going to cause a cumulative reduction in STUN. You could hit them with it several times and they aren't going to go unconscious, but they do "lose an action" shaking it off?

 

How do people rule on this? Is there a mechanical solution for this in Hero that I don't know about?

 

(Another example: Say someone stuck me in the arm with a pin. I would holler and jump and gasp in pain and probably not be able to "fight back" or do anything for a few seconds while I shook it off... and they could "stick me with a pin" over and over, and I'd probably never be knocked unconscious by it... but I would get "stunned' over and over, most likely, but not really be losing STUN... so how would Hero mechanically rule on that?)

 

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APG1 has a new Stunning option for Change Environment you should check out.  I've posted more details on older threads of similar topic.

 

[Notes: From APG1 page 83 - The Stunned effect lasts as long as the Change Environment is maintained (1 Turn*). However, when affected the victim gets to make a CON Roll immediately (at -6*), and if the roll succeeds the attack has no effect on him. If the roll fails, he gets to make an additional CON Roll every Phase he's affected at a cumulative +1 (so +1 on his second roll, +2 on his third, and so on). As soon as any roll succeeds, the power immediately stops affecting him and he has his full Phase in which to act.]

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23 minutes ago, Hyper-Man said:

APG1 has a new Stunning option for Change Environment you should check out.  I've posted more details on older threads of similar topic.

 

What is APG1?  Thanks.

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There used to be an optional combat rule designed for heroic level games where if you've taken Body you need to roll an ego roll to take an offensive action.  I can't look it up right now, but it was designed to make the characters not react so fast after suffering a 'grievous' wound.  I tried it once, it wasn't very heroic, so have passed on it ever since.

 

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1 minute ago, dsatow said:

There used to be an optional combat rule designed for heroic level games where if you've taken Body you need to roll an ego roll to take an offensive action.  I can't look it up right now, but it was designed to make the characters not react so fast after suffering a 'grievous' wound.  I tried it once, it wasn't very heroic, so have passed on it ever since.

 

 

Yeah... for "realistic" games, grounded more in "normal combat" vs. "heroic combat" I can see such a rule, and rules on morale and such, being cool. Old Twilight 2000 had decent rules on that, IIRC... but again, was more about gritty combat than "heroic" actions.

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5 Resistance (+5 to roll)

[Notes: (6e1 p114) At the GM’s option, Resistance also helps a character withstand the pain of injuries. If the campaign uses the optional Wounding rules (6e2 p108), every point of Resistance a character has adds +1 to his EGO Rolls for purposes of withstanding wounds.]

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1 hour ago, RDU Neil said:

Is there a mechanical solution for this in Hero that I don't know about?

 

Not without digging into optional rules and house rules. HERO is designed for cinematic action, and it eschews many of the more mundane complications of Real Life® that compromise functioning as a cinematic action hero.

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I've built effects that cause no damage, but cause a secondary effect.

 

For example: Drain Stun 4d6; only to stun (does no actual stun damage, just compared to CON to stun)

2d6 RKA, double knockback, does no body, does no stun (only causes knockback)

 

However, its worth considering an advantage that does extra stun only for the purposes of stunning a target (something like increased stun multiple for KA).  +½ advantage to do double stun, but the increased amount causes no damage, for instance.

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3 minutes ago, zslane said:

 

Not without digging into optional rules and house rules. HERO is designed for cinematic action, and it eschews many of the more mundane complications of Real Life® that compromise functioning as a cinematic action hero.

 

Oh, believe me, I get this. Creating a "pain attack" has always been just a SFX of a stun attack, like and Ego Attack or NND or something in the past. Keeping it simple. I was just wondering if, in 6th Ed, they had come up with some way of reflecting the title of this thread, "Stunned without taking STUN" It seems mechanically doable, whether you justify it as "pain and realism" or some kind of "disorienting attack" from a psionic metahuman, whatever.

 

If it doesn't exist, totally cool.


it is builds like Christophe Taylor just posted that I figured were the case... was just wondering if a base combat mechanic had been added to the game since 5th.

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Invent a new power:

 

10 pts - Stun Target

Upon a successful to-hit roll, target must make a successful EGO Roll (or CON Roll at GM's discretion) or be Stunned.

Adder: for +5 pts target takes a -1 penalty to their EGO Roll score.

 

Adjust point costs as you see fit for your campaign.

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7 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

A flash could do it as well, a blind character is much the same as a stunned one.

 

This is really where I want to go with this... as the "Stunned" effect I'm most interested in is basically the results of a flash bang type of attack. Rattles the brain, makes you a bit incoherent as you need to shake it off, but not really knocking you out. It really is what zslane posted above... an attack that has a "Stunned" as its effect, with a Stat roll to counter, -1 to Stat roll for every +5 points. Essentially an attack where your CON or EGO were the defense.

 

Totally think that is the way to go... so with that in mind... I'd ask "How is this potentially broken, abusable, and/or violates some core tenant of Hero, would create weird scenarios, etc. more than any other power or build?"  On the surface it seems pretty good. Would affect normals and lower CON/EGO characters, but would have little to no effect on supers who have very high stats, unless you spent a lot of points on it, and even then, all your getting is a 1/2 DCV and one lost action, which is what an Entangle gets you, but this goes away even if you miss the original role.

 

Seems quite tame compared to how some attacks could be abused, and gets right to the heart of what we are trying to simulate.

 

I like it.

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In 5th, you could Suppress Stun for an instant.  Per RAW, if amount of stun suppressed was greater than the characters CON, they would be Stunned.  However, I found it much better to just do Stun or a PRE attack. :)

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There are actually lots of methods, you just have to find the ones that best fit the context you need to apply them too.

 

As mentioned above, Stunned is available as a Combat Effect for Change Environment in the Advanced Players Guide. Change Environment is the power used for almost all of the official "Save-Or-Suck" powers, it can be nice and simple, but is admittedly rather vague. Therefore it is not a method preferred by most of this community.

 

Presence Attacks can easily deprive a character of their Actions, and the mechanical difference between being Stunned and PA'd out of your actions is negligible.

 

Mind Control explicitly gives you control over another's actions (and can easily be limited to simply forcing them to take no actions); it natively works against EGO and Mental Defense, but it can be modified easily using just CC/FHC/6e1&2 to target CON or more common defenses where appropriate. Likewise, Mental Illusions can completely cut a target off from reality, effectively Stunning them. But I hazard a guess that this method will end up more expensive than simply using Mind Control.

 

Mental Entangles (especially with a Time Limit) would be mechanically similar to using a Presence Attack (but both more expensive and reliable), in that the victim can reduce the duration of the effect if they've invested heavily enough in it's defense.

 

If you Flash enough senses, a character is basically Stunned... but enemies with Unique Targeting senses will be immune (or less-affected). Plus the rules for being deprived of your senses explicitly state that they don't prevent the character from taking any particular actions (such as moving or attacking), they simply affect your chances of success...

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50 minutes ago, Hyper-Man said:

I highly recommend following the last 2 links I posted.

 

I did, and maybe I'm bad at it, but didn't see anything reflecting a nice clean build of "Do this to Stun somebody" just a long discussion on how a Taser works. Maybe I missed what you were expecting me to see.

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There's a puzzling tendency for HERO players to believe that the existing power set is always the best way to build any and all things. However, there are cases where the mechanics you are after aren't really covered by the existing skills/talents/powers/etc. without a lot of torturous, highly indirect application of what's available in the RAW. This situation is hardly unusual; new powers have been added to virtually every edition of the game in order to cover various concepts more directly/elegantly, and there's no reason you can't as well. You'll have to decide if obtuse builds based around Entangle, Mind Control, Flash, or Change Environment are better fits for what you're after than a simple Stun Target power that you come up with yourself.

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In 5th, you could Suppress Stun for an instant. 

 

It was a really nice system, there were a lot of interesting effects Suppress could give, now basically awkward at best to attempt.

 

5 points to stun someone is way too cheap, particularly with a skill roll.  I mean, a 60 point power would be able to stun Grond without any hope of stopping it (-11 to CON roll??).   I'd say at least 25 points or more base if you're going to go this route (and Power Defense giving +1 to CON roll per point).

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1 hour ago, RDU Neil said:

This is really where I want to go with this... as the "Stunned" effect I'm most interested in is basically the results of a flash bang type of attack. Rattles the brain, makes you a bit incoherent as you need to shake it off, but not really knocking you out.

 

I'm not deeply knowledgeable of the physiological effects of a flash-bang grenade, but I could easily believe that the impact on the body is not really any different than any other attack that delivers STUN damage. Sure, sustaining STUN damage greater than CON means you are that much closer to being knocked out, but the stresses the body goes through when coping with a flash-bang grenade attack are probably not much different than being clocked on the jaw (minus the bruising, i.e., BODY damage).

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