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The only two characteristics with objective benchmarks in Hero are Speed and Strength.  Both have an exact, quantifiable meaning for each point: this much does that.  It makes Strength the basis for comparing all other stats, in essence.  If 20 Strength is pushing human maximum, then reasonably 20 in every other primary stat is pushing human maximum.  So 20 CON is about as good as people get, with around 23 being theoretical maximum for a human being.

 

What would be useful for us, as a group, to come up with is a range of quantifiers for each stat, something that people can grab on to and understand for at least a range in each stat.

 

So for example: 15 Intelligence and you can solve crossword puzzles easily and memorize large sections of text.  18 Dexterity and you can ice skate precise patterns like the old Olympic trials.  13 Ego and you have enough willpower to eat the scorpion at the bottom of the glass and not hurl.  That kind of thing.  I think this would not just be useful for players but a potential add in to the Hero System rules to give people certainty about building characters and designing things in Hero.

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I go with a more heroic scale.  20 is "maximum" in that it's the max you're likely to encounter in the real world.  It's not the max a human could possibly be.  I reject that idea.

 

5-8:  People of Wal-Mart

8-10:  Average couch potato

10-12:  Average healthy 30 year old in reasonably good shape

13-15:  Top 10% of your high school (when grown up)

16-18:  Top college performers

20-23:  High performing professionals

25+:  Best of the best

 

So let's say you've got an 18 Dex.  You could be a scholarship athlete at a big Division 1 school.  You could play basketball for Duke, or football at Alabama.

You've got a 15 Strength?  You might have been a high school wrestler, and you've stayed in shape as you matured into your adult body.

20 Presence?  You're a skilled trial lawyer in a large city, respected among your peers.

25 Dex?  Nike makes commercials with you in them.

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2 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

The only two characteristics with objective benchmarks in Hero are Speed and Strength

 

I'm not so sure SPD has an objective benchmark: I've seen claims that Bruce Lee had a SPD of 8, and claims that he had a SPD of4 and maybe a Naked Advantage: Autofire usable on his attacks.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary wants to see the marked bench

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I'm not so sure SPD has an objective benchmark: I've seen claims that Bruce Lee had a SPD of 8, and claims that he had a SPD of4 and maybe a Naked Advantage: Autofire usable on his attacks.

 

Sure, you can argue about what speed someone has based on films (same with Strength: how strong is Arnold Schwarzenegger?) but the stat its self is objective.  This is how many moves you get in a turn, period.

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I would say the normal characteristic maxima are for a typical human being age 21.  This needs to be defined because technically in previous rules sets, your physical maxima would deteriorate while you mental maxima would increase.  On the 20 being a limit, I would say that 20 represents 99% of the population of the world (or even 99.999% if you prefer).  This allows greatly talented people to surpass these limits with credibility.

 

Technically, IQ can be scaled with the INT stat.  But IQ isn't a great measure of intelligence and then value changes as you get older.  Assuming that IQ tests are valid and exact, then IQ scores are something like this:

  • 115-124 - Above average (e.g., university students)
  • 125-134 - Gifted (e.g., post-graduate students)
  • 135-144 - Highly gifted (e.g., intellectuals)
  • 145-154 - Genius (e.g., professors)
  • 155-164 - Genius (e.g., Nobel Prize winners)
  • 165-179 - High genius
  • 180-200 - Highest genius
  • >200 - "Unmeasurable genius"

(mostly from: http://www.wilderdom.com/intelligence/IQWhatScoresMean.html and https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-a-genius-iq-score-2795585)

 

Personally, I think INT is actually the rating of how fast you learn concepts.  People can become gifted in skills and be perceived as smart, but if they have a rough time grasping new ideas, they are probably book smart rather than INT stat high.

 

NOTE: My own IQ was measured in junior high and rated 135.  Given my love of HERO it might be higher until you see the tv shows I like, then you'd wonder how I got out from the 80-90s range. ;) 

 

Also for Lucius

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INT is hard to do in Hero because its not really about being smart at all -- at least in its use in the rules.  You could be dumb as hell and still have a great perception roll, memory, and quick at thinking of things.  And someone like Rain Man would have a high INT in most areas that would come up in a game, but not others.

 

If we did a run down of each main stat I think we could create a nice grid index with examples and benchmarks so people could just look over them and know.  I think someone did something similar to this in the FH section a few months ago, but it would be useful to give a bit more detail.  Some might be tough like Stun, but even things like PD (boxer level PD can take a solid blow) or Recovery (19 year old boy, can get blackout drunk and wake up the next day fresh and ready to party)

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Standard deviations might be a useful way of looking at it.  1 standard deviation above average puts you in the top 15%.  2 puts you in the top 2%.  3 is around 1 in 500 to 1 in 1000.  4 is about 1 in 30,000.  5+ puts you firmly in "legendary" territory.  Every 3-5 points of a stat value above 10 could be one standard deviation.  Maybe for the physicals--STR, DEX, CON--it could be 3 points per SD(standard deviation). For the mentals--INT, EGO, PRE--it could be 5 points per.  So a stat of 30 in the physicals is ultra-rare.  A stat above 30 in the mental stats would also be super rare.  

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3 hours ago, megaplayboy said:

Standard deviations might be a useful way of looking at it.  1 standard deviation above average puts you in the top 15%.  2 puts you in the top 2%.  3 is around 1 in 500 to 1 in 1000.  4 is about 1 in 30,000.  5+ puts you firmly in "legendary" territory.  Every 3-5 points of a stat value above 10 could be one standard deviation.  Maybe for the physicals--STR, DEX, CON--it could be 3 points per SD(standard deviation). For the mentals--INT, EGO, PRE--it could be 5 points per.  So a stat of 30 in the physicals is ultra-rare.  A stat above 30 in the mental stats would also be super rare.  

 

We already have the baseline rule that +5 doubles the ability.  I would definitely keep the same scaling for both physical and mental stats.  I don't think Hero is in need of more rules that apply differently in some cases than others...

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3 hours ago, megaplayboy said:

Standard deviations might be a useful way of looking at it.  1 standard deviation above average puts you in the top 15%.  2 puts you in the top 2%.  3 is around 1 in 500 to 1 in 1000.  4 is about 1 in 30,000.  5+ puts you firmly in "legendary" territory.  Every 3-5 points of a stat value above 10 could be one standard deviation.  Maybe for the physicals--STR, DEX, CON--it could be 3 points per SD(standard deviation). For the mentals--INT, EGO, PRE--it could be 5 points per.  So a stat of 30 in the physicals is ultra-rare.  A stat above 30 in the mental stats would also be super rare.  

 

This and massy's post above are very similar to how I look at it.  For primary stats I group them into categories.  Secondary stats are grouped into the same categories with differing ranges due to scale.

8-11   Typical person on the street.
12-14  Best in town.
15-17  Best in the city.
18-19  Best in the state.
20-22  Best in the country.
23-25  Best in the world.
26-27  Once in a generation.
28-30  Legendary / high non-super cinematic.
31+    Superhuman.

 

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We already have the baseline rule that +5 doubles the ability.  I would definitely keep the same scaling for both physical and mental stats.  I don't think Hero is in need of more rules that apply differently in some cases than others...

 

Yeah I agree with this.  But what I'm looking for are less examples (although those are good too) but tangible benchmarks people can look at and go "ahh, that's how good this rating is."  You can do both with Strength (this is as strong as an olympic power lifter as well as you hit for xd6 and can lift y kg weight).  I think having both would be really useful for the rules and for helping people build characters.

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Definitely agree on having some examples of how this stat level would commonly manifest.  That would also allow these examples to move above 20 to say "what can someone Legendary in this stat achieve" and "what does Superhuman mean in terms of this stat?"

 

One example which has been debated before is PRE - just how persuasive is someone with Legendary PRE, or even superhuman PRE?  Can he Persuade a Rabbi to convert to Catholocism?  Charm himself into the faithful Queen's boudoir?  Bluff his way out of execution on the spot when the King walks in on them?  Get Daniel Webster out of his contract with the Devil?  Convince the English and the Germans to lay down their arms and walk off the WW I battlefield?  Get a multi-million program for migrant workers to gain US citizenship approved by Donald Trump?

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I like spreading the stats out a bit because I want a little more separation between total normals and legendary athletes.  It doesn't bother me if it doesn't quite match the real world.

 

I once saw a college football player break his own leg when he jumped in the air and chest-bumped a teammate.  He didn't kick anything, he just landed funny.  He came down on his leg a little awkwardly and snap -- a season ending injury.  So does that mean he has a 0 PD?  Vulnerability to failed Dex checks?  Nah.  Real life just doesn't get perfectly simulated by game mechanics.  Giving a guy an 8 PD doesn't mean that you can beat on him all day with a baseball bat without cracking a rib.  In game terms that might technically be true, but narratively it just means the guy is pretty darn tough.  He can take a punch.

 

I don't want to see character sheets for Mike Tyson in his prime and see that somebody gave him a 16 Str.  Nor do I think Lois Lane gets a 7 Str, even if she's only 5'6" and weighs 130 lbs.  There's nothing wrong with leaving Lois with a 10, or giving Iron Mike a 25.  

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22 hours ago, dsatow said:

I would say the normal characteristic maxima are for a typical human being age 21.  This needs to be defined because technically in previous rules sets, your physical maxima would deteriorate while you mental maxima would increase. 

 

 

I think I could make a strong argument, since the advent of Twitter and Facebook, that your mental maxima also decreases with age.

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22 hours ago, dsatow said:

Assuming that IQ tests are valid and exact, then IQ scores are something like this:

 

They are one of the most highly tested and vetted long-term efforts anywhere.  Dismissing IQ tests after 100+ years of testing and refinement borders on the absurd.

 

If you measure IQ and the psychological trait Conscientiousness (basically work ethic) you have a tremendously good tool for determining long term success.

 

Anyway, back on topic.  Most verifiable stats, imo:

STR - Can easily run someone through common strength tests to get a very good picture of overall strength.  World strongman competition is a good example.

INT - IQ testing is fantastic

 

 

Other stats would be difficult or blur into other areas.  Like measuring for dexterity.  Reaction time has a 0.2 - 0.3 correlation to IQ.

 

 

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Endurance might be measurable.  Doctor's offices do heart tests on a treadmill.  You basically run at higher speeds until you can't run anymore (but not pass out).

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5 hours ago, Toxxus said:

 

They are one of the most highly tested and vetted long-term efforts anywhere.  Dismissing IQ tests after 100+ years of testing and refinement borders on the absurd.

 

If you measure IQ and the psychological trait Conscientiousness (basically work ethic) you have a tremendously good tool for determining long term success.

 

Anyway, back on topic.  Most verifiable stats, imo:

STR - Can easily run someone through common strength tests to get a very good picture of overall strength.  World strongman competition is a good example.

INT - IQ testing is fantastic

 

 

 

If what is measured by an IQ test  correlated closely with what the INT Characteristic  measures, you might have a point. Just because both are called "Intelligence" doesn't mean one is the same thing as the other.

 

4 hours ago, dsatow said:

Endurance might be measurable.  Doctor's offices do heart tests on a treadmill.  You basically run at higher speeds until you can't run anymore (but not pass out).

 

The trick is comparing that to points of END on a character sheet, and also teasing out the influence of REC (remember you get a RECovery every 12 seconds.)

 

Lucius Alexander

 

What measure is a palindromedary?

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16 hours ago, Toxxus said:

 

They are one of the most highly tested and vetted long-term efforts anywhere.  Dismissing IQ tests after 100+ years of testing and refinement borders on the absurd.

 

Many years ago, our young son was IQ tested.  The psychologist indicated they did not give out exact scores due to lack of reliability, but he was very bright.  And he would have scored several points higher in the U.S., where the median is lower, so a 100 here is a few points over 100 there.

 

Tack on Lucius' point that there are a lot of different kinds of intelligence (emotional intelligence, anyone, which seems more linked to PRE/interaction skills) and I don't think IQ and INT correlate all that well.

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6 minutes ago, Hugh Neilson said:

Tack on Lucius' point that there are a lot of different kinds of intelligence (emotional intelligence, anyone, which seems more linked to PRE/interaction skills) and I don't think IQ and INT correlate all that well.

 

My understanding of the literature suggests that the theories behind "different kinds of intelligence" have been disproved.

 

Link below, but summary:  It's egalitarian feel-good non-sense.  It's popular, but has no research backing it up.

 

There are differences in much smaller areas like math, verbal ability, spatial reasoning, etc., but none of the areas in the popular "multiple intelligences" idea.

 

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/unique-everybody-else/201311/the-illusory-theory-multiple-intelligences

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From my understanding, is that the IQ tests were problematic in that it assumed a certain level of education,  a certain culture and upbringing.  This makes using them on a person from New York, New York when compared to someone from Ghana, Africa vastly different.

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58 minutes ago, dsatow said:

From my understanding, is that the IQ tests were problematic in that it assumed a certain level of education,  a certain culture and upbringing.  This makes using them on a person from New York, New York when compared to someone from Ghana, Africa vastly different.

 

That's probably 15-20 years out of date.  They've done heavy statistical analysis using inter-correlation to remove culturally biased questions.

 

Essentially, if they spot that members of a specific culture are doing worse on specific questions compared to other groups - they fix or remove the question.

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Whatever you might think about the IQ test, it doesn't really have anything to do with Intelligence as Hero uses the term.  At least, not as I understand it and can see it used.  Its less how actually smart you are than how well you notice things and how good your memory is.

 

SO, I'll take a stab at this, to maybe get some specifics started.  It seems to me that we don't really need stats beyond 30 or so with any but Strength, realistically.

 

DEX    BENCHMARK                                                       EXAMPLE 

  1       Barely able to stand or hold objects                 Newborn baby, blind drunk

  3       Cannot be trusted to carry objects                   Very clumsy or drunk person

  5       Picked last for the team, awkward                   Clumsy non athlete or tipsy person

  8       Untrained sedentary human                               Office worker, middle aged gaming supplement writer

 10      Healthy, active human                                         Jogger, gym membership

 15      Able to compete at college level, agile             Martial Arts training, low round pick for professional team, gymnast

           good manual dexterity and reaction time

           can catch a thrown ball easily

 18      high eye-hand coordination, can juggle            Professional athlete, very well trained martial artist, circus acrobat

           multiple objects and catch a fly on the

           wing

 20     Catch thrown objects while juggling, use          elite professional athlete (first round pick), world-famous acrobat and gymnast

           feet as hands, can dodge arrows or 

           do extremely minute and specific detail work

 25     Catch arrows out of the air, do multiple             Legendary, gold-medal level athletes and acrobats, multiple gold medal winners, hall of fame level skill.  Their name is synonymous with agility

          tasks simultaneously, type while juggling

 30     catch a bullet out of the air, throw a golf            Superheroes, aliens, beyond potential human capacity

          ball through a hole its size in a jet airplane

         as it flies by, do brain surgery on two people

         at once with your feet

 

Anyway, that's a start.

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1 hour ago, massey said:

Yeah, I don't think IQ needs a direct correlation to INT.  IQ seems like a fairly arbitrary number for gaming purposes -- you've just replaced one set of numbers that need examples with another set that also need examples.  What does 150 IQ mean anyway?

 

That you are about 3 standard deviations from normal.

See https://www.123test.com/interpretation-of-an-iq-score/ which has a good explanation.

 

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Sure but in game terms it has no tangible or useful meaning.  Its just changing one numerical stat for another.  We need specific benchmarks not just another scale.

 

I considered putting example names in the DEX chart but decided against it; I've been playing Champions since about 1982 and what was broadly known and appreciated then is largely obscure today.  I mean, Buster Keaton as an example of 20 dexterity is kind of eternal, but most examples are fading and its more useful to have a universal template.

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35 minutes ago, dsatow said:

That you are about 3 standard deviations from normal.

See https://www.123test.com/interpretation-of-an-iq-score/ which has a good explanation.

 

 

That's still not something that's easy to visualize.  "You're 3 standard deviations above normal" is still more math jargon.  That's like saying an 18 Int "gives you a 13- Int roll".

 

Let's try something else instead.

 

Int 0:  Profound mental retardation.  Completely unable to function, requires constant care by others.

Int 1-3:  Mentally retarded.  Can be taught to do simple tasks, and function somewhat in a supervised environment.

Int 5:  The dumbest kid in your class.  Should probably be in special ed courses.  A solid D- student.

Int 8:  A regular dumb kid, who grows up into a regular dumb adult.  Homer Simpson.

Int 10:  A normal person, perfectly average.

Int 13:  An average honors student.  Reasonably bright, gets good grades easily, average college student at a decent school.

Int 15:  Above average college student, average engineering/math/science geek.  Noticeably smarter than average.  One of the smartest kids at your high school.

Int 18:  High school valedictorian without really trying, aces all standardized tests, full ride college academic scholarship.  Would be "the smart kid" on a realistic TV show.

Int 20:  College dean's list, good grades in really hard majors.  Smartest person you're likely to ever interact with.  NASA scientists, nuclear engineers, surgeons.

Int 23-25:  Unrealistically smart.  Would be the smart kid on a slapstick comedy TV show ("Did I do that?", can build a robot).  Good at any intellectual task they try.  Hannibal Lecter.

Int 28-30:  Comic book super-scientists.  Builds arc reactors, learns new fields of expertise in one evening of study.  Super-detectives, solves mysteries no one else can solve.  Tony Stark, Sherlock Holmes.

Int 33+:  Pure bragging rights, smarter than the guy under you.  Doctor Doom, Mr Fantastic, Batman.

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