Jump to content
PamelaIsley

Should Villains Be More Powerful Than Heroes?

Recommended Posts

28 minutes ago, PamelaIsley said:

 

VIPER agents in CU are 5 OCV +2 with their blasters. UNTIL are similar, but just have +1 in skills.

Yeah -I always thought the rank and file VIPER agents were too powerful. If we’re reducing Villains to be in Benchmarks, then so should agents, imo. 😃

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly, I've never had much of an issue with any of the published villains as I just adjust them to fit my campaign. OCV to high....lower it. Damage too high...reduce it. Easy peasy. Someone brought up certain villains being way overpowered....like Gravitar. Well....many CU villains are homages to published Marvel/DC characters....in this case....Marvel's Graviton. In his first appearance, he suspends a HUGE chunk or real estate in the air while SIMULTANEUOSLY pinning most of the Avengers to a slab of rock(including the Vision...so Affects Desolid), fighting...and getting the better of...Thor, and protecting himself with a nigh impenetrable Gravitic force field. This is after he previously defeated The Avengers...sans Thor...with ridiculous ease. Gravitar fits right into that displayed power level. That said...she's as easily adjustable as any of the other published characters. I adapt them as necessary to make for interesting game sessions.

 

To answer the original question....It depends on the type of scenario I'm running and what kind of story I'm intending to tell. Sometimes they need to be more powerful....other times not so much. Again...adaptability is your friend. The important thing is does this bad guy add to the story you're trying to tell and is everyone having fun. If the answer is yes, you're fine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Dr. MID-Nite said:

To answer the original question....It depends on the type of scenario I'm running and what kind of story I'm intending to tell. Sometimes they need to be more powerful....other times not so much. Again...adaptability is your friend. The important thing is does this bad guy add to the story you're trying to tell and is everyone having fun. If the answer is yes, you're fine.

 

I want to thank everyone for their posts.

 

My original thoughts were more related to overall world demographics -- kind of a universe building question.  The CU's published villains are all really powerful (and lots of them have gotten more powerful through editions; I just discovered Anubis received an enormous jump from 5E to 6E).  It calls into question some of the assumptions presented in the 6E Champions book and the 6E Champions Universe book (talking about the ratio of heroes to villains, and the over all power levels of characters).

 

I did understand from the start that you could adjust these characters as needed.  It would be tedious work if you didn't enter them in Hero Designer, but it can be done.  I just think that there isn't a good representation of average villains in the published materials.  Or the "average" villain according to published materials is too powerful to fit with the demographic information that we've been given.

 

We would need another thread, I think, to discuss opinions on the Master Villains' stat blocks.  :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, Ninja-Bear said:

Pamelaisley have you looked at Thunderbolt II? He’s a reall simple build Speedster! Good thing I was sitting down when I read him! I almost fainted! 😁

 

Yes, his OCV is very high (12).  I guess you can forgive the STR and Resistant Protection since he's described as a Brick / Speedester.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last nights Flash had a new Cicada show up who managed to take down the entire team.  Would that character be build on more points then each of the team members?  Not necessarily.  A Villain can put all their points into attacks, OCV, and SPD.   Furthermore most Villains can have a IAF as the source of their powers while the Heroes pay for there powers with few limitations if any.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Cassandra said:

Last nights Flash had a new Cicada show up who managed to take down the entire team.  Would that character be build on more points then each of the team members?  Not necessarily.  A Villain can put all their points into attacks, OCV, and SPD.   Furthermore most Villains can have a IAF as the source of their powers while the Heroes pay for there powers with few limitations if any.

 

Sounds like he's burning through his Hero Points to me.

 

To explain: the old Mayfair DC Heroes game had something called "Hero Points".  In Champions terms, Hero Points allowed you to boost your attack power, OCV, DCV, or Defenses up to double their normal amount.  You could do a few other things with them as well, such as reducing damage, but boosting your stats was what people normally did with them.  Once you spent Hero Points, they were gone.  Instead of gaining XP, you gained Hero Points.  Get enough of them and you could permanently increase your powers.  Hero Points generally represent how important a character is, and how likely the whims of fate are to tilt in his direction (if anyone can survive that "one in a million" fall out of an airplane, it's Batman).  Certain characters are consistently lucky, almost like they had loaded dice.  So the general thinking among DC Heroes players is that when a villain makes an impressive first appearance, and then later they start sucking, is that they probably blew through all of their Hero Points in that first go, and then never got enough back to be a credible threat again.

 

So imagine if somebody like Pulsar could blow through his reserve in his first appearance, chucking 24D6 Energy Blasts at an 18 OCV, and could shrug off damage like it was nothing.  Of course, he can only do that once, because ultimately the heroes defeat him anyway, and then he never gets enough XP to offset everything he just spent.

 

It's a simulationist explanation for a common trope, that the villain is badass awesome at the beginning and then becomes less powerful as time goes on.  It's also a really long way of saying that you can't judge the villain on his first appearance.  Presumably we aren't spending every waking moment with our characters.  There are probably times when a new villain shows up to challenge the Flash and Flash beats him in a tenth of a second.  Those battles aren't worth paying attention to.  So we really only see the fights where the villain presents a credible threat, because they're either very powerful, or they got the drop on the hero, or they just got lucky.  And a "first appearance" power bonus could simulate that fairly well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, massey said:

 

Sounds like he's burning through his Hero Points to me.

 

To explain: the old Mayfair DC Heroes game had something called "Hero Points".  In Champions terms, Hero Points allowed you to boost your attack power, OCV, DCV, or Defenses up to double their normal amount.  You could do a few other things with them as well, such as reducing damage, but boosting your stats was what people normally did with them.  Once you spent Hero Points, they were gone.  Instead of gaining XP, you gained Hero Points.  Get enough of them and you could permanently increase your powers.  Hero Points generally represent how important a character is, and how likely the whims of fate are to tilt in his direction (if anyone can survive that "one in a million" fall out of an airplane, it's Batman).  Certain characters are consistently lucky, almost like they had loaded dice.  So the general thinking among DC Heroes players is that when a villain makes an impressive first appearance, and then later they start sucking, is that they probably blew through all of their Hero Points in that first go, and then never got enough back to be a credible threat again.

 

So imagine if somebody like Pulsar could blow through his reserve in his first appearance, chucking 24D6 Energy Blasts at an 18 OCV, and could shrug off damage like it was nothing.  Of course, he can only do that once, because ultimately the heroes defeat him anyway, and then he never gets enough XP to offset everything he just spent.

 

It's a simulationist explanation for a common trope, that the villain is badass awesome at the beginning and then becomes less powerful as time goes on.  It's also a really long way of saying that you can't judge the villain on his first appearance.  Presumably we aren't spending every waking moment with our characters.  There are probably times when a new villain shows up to challenge the Flash and Flash beats him in a tenth of a second.  Those battles aren't worth paying attention to.  So we really only see the fights where the villain presents a credible threat, because they're either very powerful, or they got the drop on the hero, or they just got lucky.  And a "first appearance" power bonus could simulate that fairly well.

 

Plus heroes spent their points on communicators and bases while villains buy Followers and increase their attacks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Cassandra said:

 

Plus heroes spent their points on communicators and bases while villains buy Followers and increase their attacks.

 

Well, I thnk the Hero Point explanation is really a justification for giving villains a boost in their first appearance.

 

Let's say you've got Captain Blastarr.  He's a fairly generic energy projector in early 90s Image armor.  And he first appears on the cover of Champions #287.  He's not an amazing character, but he's got to look cool in his first issue.  So he's standing there like a cheapo Dr Destroyer, with the entire team on the ground unconscious.  He's got his hand pointed at Defender's body, with a glowing aura surrounding him.  The cover says "AT THE MERCY... OF CAPTAIN BLASTARR!!!"

 

He looks pretty tough there, and if you read the issue you see that he slaps around the team pretty easily.  He's chucking huge energy blasts that drop two or three members per shot.  Their attacks harmlessly bounce off his force field.  It looks like nothing they can do can hurt him.  By the end, the Champions will pull out a win by the skin of their teeth, and Captain Blastarr is defeated.  But one day he will return...

 

Of course, when he does eventually return six months later, the Champions don't have near the problem with him that they did the first time.  They're ready for his moves, and they pound him into the dirt.  Five years later he's making an appearance in some second string comic, and the Kindergarten Kommandoes are pounding on him.  Eventually he only shows up in big group battles, where some giant team of 50 villains attacks the heroes all at once.  He's just a face in a big group shot, and then you see him unconscious in some two-page splash panel.

 

So... how tough is this guy anyway?  Is he the guy who kicked the crap out of the Champions?  Or is he the guy who got trounced by Wonder Tot's dog?  It's too hard to judge villains by their first appearance.  Presumably some villains roll really well the first time they show up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/13/2019 at 2:39 PM, massey said:

 

Well, I thnk the Hero Point explanation is really a justification for giving villains a boost in their first appearance.

 

Let's say you've got Captain Blastarr.  He's a fairly generic energy projector in early 90s Image armor.  And he first appears on the cover of Champions #287.  He's not an amazing character, but he's got to look cool in his first issue.  So he's standing there like a cheapo Dr Destroyer, with the entire team on the ground unconscious.  He's got his hand pointed at Defender's body, with a glowing aura surrounding him.  The cover says "AT THE MERCY... OF CAPTAIN BLASTARR!!!"

 

He looks pretty tough there, and if you read the issue you see that he slaps around the team pretty easily.  He's chucking huge energy blasts that drop two or three members per shot.  Their attacks harmlessly bounce off his force field.  It looks like nothing they can do can hurt him.  By the end, the Champions will pull out a win by the skin of their teeth, and Captain Blastarr is defeated.  But one day he will return...

 

Of course, when he does eventually return six months later, the Champions don't have near the problem with him that they did the first time.  They're ready for his moves, and they pound him into the dirt.  Five years later he's making an appearance in some second string comic, and the Kindergarten Kommandoes are pounding on him.  Eventually he only shows up in big group battles, where some giant team of 50 villains attacks the heroes all at once.  He's just a face in a big group shot, and then you see him unconscious in some two-page splash panel.

 

So... how tough is this guy anyway?  Is he the guy who kicked the crap out of the Champions?  Or is he the guy who got trounced by Wonder Tot's dog?  It's too hard to judge villains by their first appearance.  Presumably some villains roll really well the first time they show up.

 

Maybe lots of Combat Luck because Villains know Heroes don't do surprise attacks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...