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Why purchase a Skill Level with All Attacks?

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1 minute ago, Greywind said:

Some said the same thing about figured characteristics and COM, and yet here we are.

 

I wouldn't say that sales are in a healthy state currently nor that the rules are particularly well accepted by the masses.

 

The game who's biggest weakness was complexity became increasingly complex and rules heavy until the player base all but vanished.

 

Personally the dropping of figured characteristics was not a big deal for me and it does allow some interesting character constructs. 

On the other hand they feel pretty intuitive to players and losing them has NOT helped adoption of the game system by new players.

 

My Saturday game just wrapped up a big campaign in 6th edition and honestly if HERO designer supported 4th edition I'd revert back to that before the next campaign starts.

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What is a Combat Skill Level?  OCV, DCV or 0 END damage.  Sounds like a Multipower to me.

 

So, call that a 60 point pool with three Flex Slots (+12 OCV, +12 DCV, +6 DCs establishing a 0 END floating DC at 10 points) - 96 points in total, divide by 12 = 8 points per unlimited Combat Skill Level. 

 

Ranged Only or HTH Only?  -1/2, so call that 6 (we'll round up).

 

Large Group of Ranged or HTH attacks?  That's -1, so 4 points (current price).

 

Smaller group?  -1 1/2 gets us to 3 points (so does -2) so we are back to current pricing for only a small group of abilities.

 

+1 OCV for one attack?  -2 limitation on OCV.  Smaller group is - 1 1/2; Large group -1, Only HTH or only Ranged -1/2.

 

Ditto for DCV with limited uses.

 

Want more damage?  Buy more damage.

 

Toss in mOCV and mDCV as 36 point Flex Slots and the price rises to 110 points - call that 9 points per level.

 

Limit the 9 point levels to Mental Powers Only (-1) and call that 5 points per level like HTH or Ranged attacks.

 

Smaller group of mental powers?  Call that -2 and it's 3 points per level

 

OK, what about Skill Levels?

 

Well, now we get into whether DEX, INT and PRE are priced appropriately.  Make these "Stat, only for CHAR rolls (no PER for INT) and call that -1

 

Only one roll at a time?  -1/2 more for losing complementary skills.  That's 2 points for a current Skill Level.  Best make +1 to one skill no more than 1 point.

 

BETTER ANSWER:  INT and PRE get re-priced to 2 points.  Half of DEX, INT and PRE are char rolls, the other half are initiative, PER rolls and PRE attacks.  For 5 points, you get either one, and you Limit from there.

 

+1 to all rolls?  5 points.  Only one roll at any time?  -1/2.  Smaller subsets of rolls get further limitations.  Still thinking +1 to just one skill might only be worth 1 point.

 

All skill rolls?  3 slot Multi, so we are back to a base of 8 points, or 6 (-1/2) for only one bonus at a time (the base 8 allows all PRE, or INT, or DEX rolls at one time).

 

Overall levels?  Well, each Combat Skill Level is adding 3 slots, so 110 + 36 = 146 /12 = 12 points.  No mental bonuses?  -1/4, so 10 points.

 

OK, who wants to fine tune it?

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I think the "2 levels to add damage" thing probably should be grandfathered out entirely, to be honest.  It makes things a bit more cluttered and complicates builds (especially with DCV) if you're trying to simulate combat skill levels.

 

I think Multipower is absolutely the wrong way to go about it for a lot of reasons but not the least of which is COST

 

Points  Power

    10     Multipower (Combat Skill Level) 10  pts

    1f     OCV +2

    1f     DCV +2

    1f     Blast 1d6

    1f     HTA 1d6

    1f     HKA 1 Damage Class

    1f     RKA 1 Damage Class

 

There's your base multipower, its 17 points for 2 overall combat skill levels.  What a bargain

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8 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

I think the "2 levels to add damage" thing probably should be grandfathered out entirely, to be honest.  It makes things a bit more cluttered and complicates builds (especially with DCV) if you're trying to simulate combat skill levels.

 

I think Multipower is absolutely the wrong way to go about it for a lot of reasons but not the least of which is COST

 

Points  Power

    10     Multipower (Combat Skill Level) 10  pts

    1f     OCV +2

    1f     DCV +2

    1f     Blast 1d6

    1f     HTA 1d6

    1f     HKA 1 Damage Class

    1f     RKA 1 Damage Class

 

There's your base multipower, its 17 points for 2 overall combat skill levels.  What a bargain

 

OK, let's buy 6 levels.  Cost = 102.  But you cannot add 2 to OCV, 2 to DCV and 1 DC, because you used Fixed Slots instead of Flexible Slots.  Flexible Slots double the slot costs.

 

Also, when you add DCs, you must pay END under your model.  No big deal - you have room to make those DCs 0 END.  You cannot add DCs to any attack with advantages (I guess you could add a +1/2 Variable Advantage to at least cover minor advantages), to a Flash or an Adjustment Power, etc.  No adding to Disarm, Shove, Grab, Escape, etc. either.  But you may have the STR that adding DCs to your HKA pays off double as you can now add more STR (or martial maneuver dice, I suppose) if you are playing in a game where these additions to base DCs are capped.

 

I can argue both ways on DCs.  I seldom see it used in Supers games, but I do see it used in Heroic games.  Sacrificing finesse for power seems like something skill levels should allow.  And the genie of roving damage classes is out of the bottle - remove it from skill levels, and we need a new mechanic for all those Talents that add DCs to attacks.  The toolkit should be able to build those.  10 points for a 0 END "roving DC" seems OK to me, but perhaps that under-costs it.

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8 hours ago, Gnome BODY (important!) said:

16 points for 2 overall CSLs is a bargain compared to the 6e pricing, yes. 

 

He has 2 for 17 points, but without flexibility (the MP is all OCV, all DCV or all damage).  The challenge is the damage slots as the game has never priced a "roving DC" directly.

 

3 hours ago, dmjalund said:

but you need to buy the damage slots at zero END

 

He can, quite easily.  +2 OCV is a 10 point slot, and +1d6 Blast, 0 END is only 7.5.

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17 hours ago, Gnome BODY (important!) said:

16 points for 2 overall CSLs is a bargain compared to the 6e pricing, yes. 

 

But exactly what it cost in every previous edition. Maybe 6th just costs skills too high.

 

8 hours ago, Hugh Neilson said:

 

He has 2 for 17 points, but without flexibility (the MP is all OCV, all DCV or all damage).  The challenge is the damage slots as the game has never priced a "roving DC" directly.

 

 

He can, quite easily.  +2 OCV is a 10 point slot, and +1d6 Blast, 0 END is only 7.5.

 

The game has priced roving DC's as Deadly Blow and Weapon Master since 4th. The problem is that they are priced too low(It might be because they were created specifically for some game creator's favorite PC.... just saying) Build them with AID with the Advantages that come required for groups of powers and all powers and you get closer to their value. That still leaves  martial DC"s below value but i'd raise them to 6 and call it a day.

 

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The "roving DC" is currently priced as skill levels, only usable to add damage (which is more than a -1/2 limitation, in my opinion), so there is a bit of a circle game going on there.  I forget how they were priced in prior editions (the switch to skill levels in 6e was based on the elimination of the "doubling rule" so that skill levels could add unlimited DCs), although I don't believe it was very clear.  It definitely never attracted consensus.

 

If we build it as Aid, then it should last - I can "swap" to OCV or DCV and the Aid keeps going, subject to fade rates.  The DCs then cost END.

 

Spreading a blast allows a trade-off of +1 OCV for -1 DC.  Most ranged attacks could therefore be viewed as a multipower of OCV or DC's, taken from that perspective.  The skill level gains more OCV per DC sacrificed, but those DCs can cover more territory, and are 0 END by default. 

 

The 8 point cost kind of feels more reasonable, so that supports but does not prove it, at least for me.  I never found skill levels "a bargain" in earlier editions.

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OK I'm sorry, I had to stop last night because bed time, but here's the rest of the post.

 

8 points a level for +1 overall combat level is pretty solid (and the old price).  But the problem is that the multipower model breaks down completely at lower levels.  For example, here's what a skill level that is only for +1 OCV (the old 5-point and current 8-point level: A Large Group CSL applies to more maneuvers, weapons, or powers than a Small Group, but fewer than “All HTH Combat” or “All Ranged Combat.” Examples include an entire Martial Arts style, all bladed weapons, or a “Light Attacks” Multipower (with more than three slots). Large Group CSLs generally apply to either a group of HTH attacks or a group of Ranged attacks.)  This is the level you can buy as "only for OCV" or "Only for DCV."

 

Points  Power

    7     Multipower (Combat Skill Level) 10  pts (Only for a group of combat maneuvers -½)

    1f     OCV +2

    1f     DCV +2

    1f     Blast 1d6

    1f     HTA 1d6

    1f     HKA 1 Damage Class

    1f     RKA 1 Damage Class

 

Which now costs... 13 points for 2 levels.  Why?  Because of the damage adder.  But each step down you do this to make it cheaper, it only loses a few points.  You can't really get it under 3 points for the base with a -2 limitation (presumably one attack only) which is a grand total of 9 points.  So the combat skill levels looks like this:

 

Overall Combat: 8 points per level

Large Group: 6 points per level

Small Group: 5 points per level

Single Attack: 4 points per level

 

So the more narrow you get, the worse it breaks down and the cost doesn't work at all.  Overall levels actually get cheaper, by the way (maybe too expensive now?) because you have to buy them with a power pool, there's not any reasonable way to buy them in a multipower.

 

Quote

OK, let's buy 6 levels.  Cost = 102.  But you cannot add 2 to OCV, 2 to DCV and 1 DC, because you used Fixed Slots instead of Flexible Slots.  Flexible Slots double the slot costs.

 

And that's another problem with the multipower model, it breaks apart completely with more than 2 levels (I bought 2 because buying "half a damage class with a limitation that it can only be used in doubles" costs the same as 1 damage class.).

 

In other words, multipower is just not the best way to buy them.

 

So do we buy them with an Aid?  Its 6 points to give 3 points, so you'd need 1½d6 to get 5 points.  And then you'd need a variable effect advantage to get it to work on one of the six different elements one at a time, probably +¼.  But you can't use Aid in all the places you can Skill Levels (same problem with multipower) such as aborting to change levels to DCV...

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Sorry if I wasn't clear. I would build the talents with Aid but they would still be Talents when all was said and done and thus have 0 END cost. MY preferred option would be to eliminate them from the game at the Supers level. They work fine in heroic games but the problem they cover in Supers(Giving "highly skilled normals" the DC's to be a threat, is better covered by just acknowledging that those PC's and NPC's are really Supers with "super skilled " as their SFX).

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I find that the Multipower approach is enough to support the belief that an "all physical combat" level is worth 8 points, and adding in Mental Combat to bring it up to 10 points works as well.

 

From there, I am fine taking that 8 point level and applying "only HTH" or "only range" at -1/2 to get about 6 points, smaller group at 4 points (-1) and just three attacks/maneuvers is -2 (so 3 points). 

 

My goal in costing a similar MP is to assess whether the cost for a different mechanic is reasonable.

 

Aid is a poor comparable, as Aid to each stat would remain in effect, subject to fade rate, so you could use those levels for OCV and DCV at the same time.  Your "every attack power ever" MP is not really a fair comparison - if it were, I should be able to trade 3 skill levels (+3 OCV or DCV = 15 points) for +2 DCs, 0 END (also 15 points),  but I have to trade 4 levels.

 

The "roving damage class" cost is imperfect, but if I were putting OCV, DCV and damage classes in a Multipower, I'd likely include some attack slots that cost END (if I have the END, I can do more damage), and I would not have attack slots cap at 75% of the pool.  I might also toss in a Movement slot, a Defenses slot and/or other abilities, an option not open if I am buying skill levels.  The MP pricing sells me that 8/6/4/3 is reasonable costing for this "kinda similar but also different" mechanic.

 

There is no need for "only OCV" or "only DCV" - buy OCV, DCV or more damage.  OCV or DCV with only one maneuver/attack is pretty limited, so allowing that at 1 point would not break my heart.  Pretty much how it's priced for Martial Arts.  That 4 point DC - well, I guess that is 2 4 point skill levels, "damage only", so Damage Only is a -1 limitation on the levels themselves.

 

That would make +2 HTH levels, Damage Only 6 points (12/ (1+1)).  However, a HTH attack adds on "only damage, not any other DC effect of HTH damage" so another -1 limitation makes that 4 points - the HTH Attack pricing.

 

Or it's +5 STR, 0 END (6) only does direct damage (-1) = 3 points.

 

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HTH attack does not need an automatic limitation built in. That is a perception fallacy not consistent with other elements of the system. 5 points per level is fine for 2 main reasons.

 

It is a power far more suited to Heroic games.  It's introduction to the system was made to account for normal damage weapons in that genre. Those weapons were  already focuses. In Supers, the power is almost exclusively purchased as a focus.

 

It is, along with  Density Increase and Growth, the only powers that receive +2 DC's for free any time the possessor uses it. 

 

There are other issues(wonky interactions with adding damage, exceptions for advantages and prorating and inconsistent hierarchy of powers used but most only come up in Supers.

 

 

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I find that the Multipower approach is enough to support the belief that an "all physical combat" level is worth 8 points, and adding in Mental Combat to bring it up to 10 points works as well.

 

 

It would be 9 (1 more fixed slot) and if you allowed the levels to add to mental damage somehow, 11 (killing and normal).  Personally I find that concept troubling, though.  After that you're taking Multipower as a whole for base cost and then the entire system breaks down rules-wise, so I don't think that's very kosher.

 

 

And then there's the problem of being able to abort to change Combat Skill Levels to DCV, which cannot be done with a multipower, etc.  Its an interesting exercise to see what you can do, but as a foundation for how you build the skill as a meta structure doesn't seem to fit the game well.

 

Maybe if we'd work out that power framework I've wanted that covers things like skill trees and martial arts that could be used.

 

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1 hour ago, Grailknight said:

HTH attack does not need an automatic limitation built in. That is a perception fallacy not consistent with other elements of the system. 5 points per level is fine for 2 main reasons.

 

+5 STR gives +1d6 HTH damage, +5 STR to grab, escape, disarm, resist being disarmed, lift, etc. etc. etc.  Why should Hand Attack provide one aspect (albeit a very important aspect) for the same price?

 

1 hour ago, Grailknight said:

It is a power far more suited to Heroic games.  It's introduction to the system was made to account for normal damage weapons in that genre. Those weapons were  already focuses. In Supers, the power is almost exclusively purchased as a focus.

 

Iron Fist; Flaming Hands spell; lots of HA possibilities that do not require a Focus and/or a Heroic campaign.  Maybe you always use a Focus - that does not make non-Focus applications invalid.  As well, Extra STR, Only for Damage seems less limited than Extra STR, Only for Damage, Focus.

 

1 hour ago, Grailknight said:

It is, along with  Density Increase and Growth, the only powers that receive +2 DC's for free any time the possessor uses it.

 

+x STR gets 2 DCs baseline to add.  So do HKAs (at least in 6e).  They are not free - you have 10 points less than you would have if you sold your STR back to zero.  You start with those 10 points pre-spent, which is creating the illusion that they are free, but the cost of not selling your STR back to 5 is the same as the cost of buying your STR up to 15.

 

52 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

 

It would be 9 (1 more fixed slot) and if you allowed the levels to add to mental damage somehow, 11 (killing and normal).  Personally I find that concept troubling, though.  After that you're taking Multipower as a whole for base cost and then the entire system breaks down rules-wise, so I don't think that's very kosher.

 

To me, at least, you are not buying a Multipower, you are using the much more flexible concept of a Multipower to assess appropriate costing.  I do not consider it necessary to assume a MP must have every attack power in the game rules.  At this point, you are converting the concept into a VPP.

 

So, a 60 point VPP pool - cost = 60

 

Control cost is 30 base, and it is Cosmic (+2 advantage), but can only be used for OCV, DCV or augmentation of attacks the character otherwise possesses, with 0 END applied.  The attacks are cost extra, eroding 10 points of the pool per DC when they cost less than 10 points per DC).  That seems WAY less flexible than any VPP I have ever seen constructed, so that must be at least a -1 limitation (105 total cost), and could more reasonably be -1 1/2 (total cost 96).  It's a lot less flexible than "any Drain or Aid", a RAW -1 limitation. 

 

Oh, look - 96/12 = 8 or 105/12 = 8.75 points per level.  Another alternative approach that leads back to 8 points being very much in the ballpark.

 

What should a Mental Blast cost?  Remember, it is a Blast based on mOCV and mDCV with LoS Range, IPE and AVAD Mental Defense.  That is a lot more than 10 poinds per 1d6, isn't it?

 

52 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

And then there's the problem of being able to abort to change Combat Skill Levels to DCV, which cannot be done with a multipower, etc.  Its an interesting exercise to see what you can do, but as a foundation for how you build the skill as a meta structure doesn't seem to fit the game well.

 

Quote

Between Phases a character can only allocate reserve points by Aborting his next Phase (see 6E2 21). Of course, he can only do this if it would constitute a defensive action.

 

Seems to me that reallocating points to DCV is a defensive action.  RAW has always, I believe, allowed such a reallocation.  It's at 6e vol 1 p 408.

 

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What should a Mental Blast cost?  Remember, it is a Blast based on mOCV and mDCV with LoS Range, IPE and AVAD Mental Defense.  That is a lot more than 10 points per 1d6, isn't it?

 

You only get 1 damage class from a skill level.  HKA costs 15 points per d6, but you get 1 damage class of it with 2 skill levels.  So 1 damage class of Mental Blast per the rules is ½d6 of effect.

 

How much it should cost is another thing, based on the rules.  Honestly if I were going to rewrite everything I would start with 10 points per d6 of mental blast and reverse engineer it to find out how much the modifiers should cost, since in my experience at least, Ego/Mental Blast is definitely not overpowered for its cost.

 

This is what it ends up being built as, according to the current rules:

 

Quote

Blast 1d6, STUN Only (+0), Alternate Combat Value (uses OMCV against DMCV; +1/4), Line Of Sight (+1/2), Invisible Power Effects (Invisible to [two Sense Groups]; +1) (14 Active Points)

 

Which suggests to me that the rules as currently constructed are a bit too expensive, and I think "invisible power effects" is the culprit.  Is it really that great to have a blast people can't sense?  The first shot or two, but after that?  Its a sniper ability, nifty for a scenario, but how often is it of benefit to a PC?  Once you're in a fight, its of no use at all in most cases.  An advantage to be sure but a +1?  Probably not.

 

Also, is Line of Sight really a +½ advantage?  It has its own drawbacks, and how often really do you suffer much from range modifiers in most fights?

 

Also I think Stun Only should be a -¼ limitation, at least in heroic games.  Probably all games.  Having no knockback and being unable to damage automatons and gadgets is a pretty significant drawback.  Is "I won't accidentally kill someone in a genre that's nearly impossible to kill people in anyway" really an offset for that?

 

Again, dropping that entirely from the equation would be cleaner and make more sense.  You just can't use levels to increase damage.  I wonder how many people actually use that option anyway?  I cannot recall a single time in my years of play anyone doing so.

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Again I say this is a fallacy of perception. HTH attack is not STR and should not be defined that way. It is the no range equivalent to Blast. If you look at it from that perspective, then its uses and modifiers could be made consistent vs HKA identically to Blast vs RKA. 

 

Even when defined as STR, it is free. It takes an active choice to lose those 2 extra DC"s and the power irself says it cannot be used alone but only with STR. HKA has no such wording.

 

Also saying it isn't free is saying you paid points for all starting Characteristics. While possible, I don't think you're advocating buying all Characteristics from 0 as a defense of your argument.

 

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3 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

You only get 1 damage class from a skill level.  HKA costs 15 points per d6, but you get 1 damage class of it with 2 skill levels.  So 1 damage class of Mental Blast per the rules is ½d6 of effect.

 

2 skill levels provide 1 DC which is 1/2 d6 of Mental Blast.  Which has nothing to do with the point that, if you insist a Skill Level be priced based on a comparable Multipower, one which is certainly not optimized in any way, you should similarly insist that Mental Blast be priced in accordance with how it would be reconstructed using Blast and advantages.

 

3 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

This is what it ends up being built as, according to the current rules:

 

Quote

Blast 1d6, STUN Only (+0), Alternate Combat Value (uses OMCV against DMCV; +1/4), Line Of Sight (+1/2), Invisible Power Effects (Invisible to [two Sense Groups]; +1) (14 Active Points)

 

?????That would do damage against PD or ED.  It needs AVAD - Mental defense (+1), which makes it Stun Only by default.  IPE should be +1/2 to make an Obvious power Imperceptible to one sense group (the second, mental, is unchanged) as 6e changed the default # of senses which detect an Obvious power.

 

So that adds another +1/2 getting us to +1.75, or 13.75 AP per 1d6. 

 

Quote

Which suggests to me that the rules as currently constructed are a bit too expensive, and I think "invisible power effects" is the culprit.  Is it really that great to have a blast people can't sense?  The first shot or two, but after that?  Its a sniper ability, nifty for a scenario, but how often is it of benefit to a PC?  Once you're in a fight, its of no use at all in most cases.  An advantage to be sure but a +1?  Probably not.

 

Also, is Line of Sight really a +½ advantage?  It has its own drawbacks, and how often really do you suffer much from range modifiers in most fights?

 

I see it from a slightly different angle.  To be worth +1 (completely invisible) or +1/2 (for mental powers), the player must be permitted to use IPE as a sniper power - that means he is allowed to get out to great range, or be inobtrusive and largely unnoticed, or otherwise able to snipe happily away with others unable to identify him as the source of the attack.  IPE is not worth the cost because we do not allow it to be used to its full effect in the game.

 

Range modifiers are a big deal if you make them a big deal.  If you have a big movement power and can back away (or up) every phase, so you can remain well away from your target, that is very advantageous.  It is much like a bunch of extra DCV.  We had a player run a flying blaster with +6 Range PSLs - staying at that range was massively effective as it was tough for opponents to close (impossible unless they could fly), so he gets full OCV and they get -4 or -6.  NRM or LoS makes much greater distances viable.

 

Quote

Also I think Stun Only should be a -¼ limitation, at least in heroic games.  Probably all games.  Having no knockback and being unable to damage automatons and gadgets is a pretty significant drawback.  Is "I won't accidentally kill someone in a genre that's nearly impossible to kill people in anyway" really an offset for that?

 

That depends on whether your GM always makes the opponents virtually impossible to kill.  It's sure nice when you want to use an AoE against a fellow with hostages.  But I agree it's a disadvantage, and -1/4 for "no knockback" seems reasonable, accepting that doing no BOD is neither advantageous nor disadvantageous, on balance, if you keep the knockback.

 

Quote

Again, dropping that entirely from the equation would be cleaner and make more sense.  You just can't use levels to increase damage.  I wonder how many people actually use that option anyway?  I cannot recall a single time in my years of play anyone doing so.

 

To me, that's more an argument to ditch CSLs entirely - they are now just a Multipower of OCV and DCV, maybe with limitations.

 

3 hours ago, Grailknight said:

Again I say this is a fallacy of perception. HTH attack is not STR and should not be defined that way. It is the no range equivalent to Blast. If you look at it from that perspective, then its uses and modifiers could be made consistent vs HKA identically to Blast vs RKA.

 

No range blast can spread to increase OCV and spread to hit multiple locations.  Can Hand Attack?  STR does HTH damage plus other things.  STR that does not do those other things is a HTH attack.  Blast does not add to STR.  It does  not increase damage done with Martial Arts.  STR does, and so does Hand Attack.

 

And, let's be real, +1/2 is a BS advantage for "STR adds".  If you have 10 STR and a 12DC attack, paying an extra 30 points to add 2 DCs is stupidly overpriced.  If you have 30 STR and a 6 DC attack, paying 15 points to add 6 DCs is a huge discount.  How many characters have you seen purchase a 3d6 HKA and a 15 STR?

 

We should just have "Killing Attack".  15 points per 1d6, ranged by default.  You want Claws?  Limit it to No Range.  You want Claws to cut harder because you are so big and strong?  Buy more KA, like you would buy more Flash to do a more effective Eye Poke.  Make it a Unified Power (or "drained when STR is drained") if you must.

 

"But it makes weapons hard to cost"  Boo Hoo call the Waaambulance.  You don't have to price weapons in CP for Heroic games.  We can even put a column in the Weapons chart so you can see it and spell the build out as an example somewhere.

 

3 hours ago, Grailknight said:

Even when defined as STR, it is free. It takes an active choice to lose those 2 extra DC"s and the power irself says it cannot be used alone but only with STR. HKA has no such wording.

 

Also saying it isn't free is saying you paid points for all starting Characteristics. While possible, I don't think you're advocating buying all Characteristics from 0 as a defense of your argument.

 

Should Running, Leaping and Swimming also be repriced to account for the fact that you get some as a default, unless you choose to sell them back? How about PD and ED?  Why should STR be different? If I want a 12d6 Blast for 50 points, and no HTH damage, I can sell my 10 STR back and spend 60 points on Blast, net cost 50 points.  The fact that we start them at a baseline does not make characters any different than if we started them at zero and increased starting points.  It does, however, set a "normal human" baseline, and save a lot of unneeded purchases for most characters.

 

 

 

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That would do damage against PD or ED.  It needs AVAD - Mental defense (+1), which makes it Stun Only by default.

 

Yeah you're right its even more expensive.  And broken, according to the rules as written. Which means the system isn't quite right yet.

 

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To be worth +1 (completely invisible) or +1/2 (for mental powers), the player must be permitted to use IPE as a sniper power - that means he is allowed to get out to great range, or be inobtrusive and largely unnoticed, or otherwise able to snipe happily away with others unable to identify him as the source of the attack.  IPE is not worth the cost because we do not allow it to be used to its full effect in the game.

 

I guess if that's the way your GM handles things.  But in my experience that's not the issue at hand, its just a matter of it being only useful for the first shot or two then of no value whatsoever, no matter what the range is.  Whether your GM lets you stand off and snipe or not has nothing to do with the value of the advantage conceptually.

 

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That depends on whether your GM always makes the opponents virtually impossible to kill.

 

You have played Champions before, right?  This has nothing to do with GM choices, its a design feature intentionally built into the game.

 

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To me, that's more an argument to ditch CSLs entirely - they are now just a Multipower of OCV and DCV, maybe with limitations.

 

See I come at it from the opposite: combat skill levels are ways of buying limited CV without the block of text, simplifying and streamlining a character sheet.  Damage shouldn't even be involved.

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4 hours ago, Hugh Neilson said:

 

2 skill levels provide 1 DC which is 1/2 d6 of Mental Blast.  Which has nothing to do with the point that, if you insist a Skill Level be priced based on a comparable Multipower, one which is certainly not optimized in any way, you should similarly insist that Mental Blast be priced in accordance with how it would be reconstructed using Blast and advantages.

 

And yet you refuse to apply this same logic to HTH attack. It should be 5pts for +1DC, +1/2 STR adds to damage,--1/4 for damage only according to this.

 

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No range blast can spread to increase OCV and spread to hit multiple locations.  Can Hand Attack?  STR does HTH damage plus other things.  STR that does not do those other things is a HTH attack.  Blast does not add to STR.  It does  not increase damage done with Martial Arts.  STR does, and so does Hand Attack.

 

That ability to be spread is balanced by the ability to add STR.

 

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And, let's be real, +1/2 is a BS advantage for "STR adds".  If you have 10 STR and a 12DC attack, paying an extra 30 points to add 2 DCs is stupidly overpriced.  If you have 30 STR and a 6 DC attack, paying 15 points to add 6 DCs is a huge discount.  How many characters have you seen purchase a 3d6 HKA and a 15 STR?

 

So the rules change because an Advantage is overpriced at at low levels while being a good deal at higher? Seems like the difference between Heroic and Supers is in play. 

 

Just as many buy HKA and STR in that combo as have that concept. Sorta like buying Iron Fist or flaming hands. But only one of these gives a discount

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We should just have "Killing Attack".  15 points per 1d6, ranged by default.  You want Claws?  Limit it to No Range.  You want Claws to cut harder because you are so big and strong?  Buy more KA, like you would buy more Flash to do a more effective Eye Poke.  Make it a Unified Power (or "drained when STR is drained") if you must.

 

"But it makes weapons hard to cost"  Boo Hoo call the Waaambulance.  You don't have to price weapons in CP for Heroic games.  We can even put a column in the Weapons chart so you can see it and spell the build out as an example somewhere.

 

 Why would we have to condense  KA into one power? This method says that you can't add STR to your HTH KA. That would be fine but now why are you able to add it to your HTH attack? Just buy more HTH attack right?

 

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Should Running, Leaping and Swimming also be repriced to account for the fact that you get some as a default, unless you choose to sell them back? How about PD and ED?  Why should STR be different? If I want a 12d6 Blast for 50 points, and no HTH damage, I can sell my 10 STR back and spend 60 points on Blast, net cost 50 points.  The fact that we start them at a baseline does not make characters any different than if we started them at zero and increased starting points.  It does, however, set a "normal human" baseline, and save a lot of unneeded purchases for most characters.

 

I never said than anything should be repriced.  I said the baseline values are free. If they weren't, if they had 0 value, then reducing them below that wouldn't be worth any points besides a Physical Limitation. Since you can use the negative values somewhere , then yes you can reallocate your free points.

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6 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

Yeah you're right its even more expensive.  And broken, according to the rules as written. Which means the system isn't quite right yet.

 

I guess if that's the way your GM handles things.  But in my experience that's not the issue at hand, its just a matter of it being only useful for the first shot or two then of no value whatsoever, no matter what the range is.  Whether your GM lets you stand off and snipe or not has nothing to do with the value of the advantage conceptually.

 

Overall, I agree with the view that the cost of building from the component parts should be comparable to any fixed value cost.  That makes Mental Blast a problem - either it is too cheap (and I agree it does not play out as "too cheap") or the component parts are too expensive.

 

Given your next comment:  you have read the Board discussions of Mentalist Snipers, haven't you?  The fact is that IPE is expensive because the ability to attack, undetected, is powerful.  If the character is not permitted to use that power, then they are not getting the value of the points they paid.  We could reasonably make mental attacks visible to one more sense group ("typically sight") without their in-game utility, at least in most games (there must be someone who allows the benefits of IPE to be leveraged), being compromised.  Removing that +1/2 advantage gets us down to 11.25 AP per 1d6, which is getting a lot closer. 

 

The shift to mOCV is free, and the shift to mDCV is +1/4.  Those both feel OK.  That means either LoS or AVAD is the troublesome price point.  Maybe AVAD is the problem - an attack that is blocked entirely if the opponent has the right Life Support is also a +1 advantage, so +1 for only being defended by Mental Defense implies more targets will have Mental defense (they will still take some damage) but on average the same damage will get through.  Does that work out in play?  Maybe we need different gradations of AVAD so moving from PD/ED to Mental Defense is +3/4 instead of +1.

 

6 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

You have played Champions before, right?  This has nothing to do with GM choices, its a design feature intentionally built into the game.

 

Try tossing in a character whose defensive powers all activate on 14-.  See how he weathers the first hit when he rolls a 16.  Now, if I fire off my 15d6 Blast, I may hospitalize or even kill the guy inside that armor.  But if I "only" use 8d6, or 10d6, I still likely hospitalize him if his armor does not activate, and bounce off if it does.  But if I had an attack that did no BOD, then I can reliably get some damage through without the fear of hospitalization or death if I hit him in an unarmored location.  He also doesn't take a bunch more damage from Knockback after my hit past his armor (with an attack that does BOD) takes him to -5 BOD.

 

Also, assume that a normal human who takes 6 of his 8 BOD does  not shrug it off as "that's OK, it will heal in a couple of months".

 

A 12DC attack averages 12 BOD (10 past normal human defenses of 2, leaving that normal with 8 BOD bleeding to death).  If it takes the paramedics one minute to get there, our normal human has lost another 5 BOD and is now seconds from death.  An above average roll and we're looking at a paramedic roll with a pretty serious penalty right out of the gate, and it had better be someone right there who can act immediately who has the skill to save him.

 

If everyone in a costume is guaranteed to be able to weather a 20 BOD hit from a KA (4d6 does roll 20 occasionally), no problem.  If some possible targets, even accidental targets, are normal humans, not doing BOD has no significant impact.

 

And if everyone is pretty much unkillable, what is the DRAWBACK of doing no BOD if you have already received the limitation for doing no Knockback?  Certainly, entangles, force walls and automatons, but normal humans are also pretty fragile.  I also have played a lot of characters who would prefer NOT to do Knockback and have to close the gap to get closer to their opponent who has ranged attacks again (or give him a head start at escaping, if that is his goal - not every opponent has the goal of KOing the heroes).

 

6 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

See I come at it from the opposite: combat skill levels are ways of buying limited CV without the block of text, simplifying and streamlining a character sheet.  Damage shouldn't even be involved.

 

Fair enough, and an essential pre-6e construct, since there was no other way to buy "just CV".  Now there is.  However, adding damage has been part of skill levels since 1e, and the fact that you rarely see it used in your subset of Supers games does not mean no one uses it, or even that it is not frequently used, in other games.  The fact that I rarely or never use the tool does not mean it should not be part of the toolbox.

 

 

3 hours ago, dmjalund said:

remember that Mental Blast does no Knockback and cannot blast a hole in a wall, (even if it has a mind ;) )

 

That is a function of AVAD and is equally true of a Flash or a STR Drain

 

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6 hours ago, Grailknight said:

And yet you refuse to apply this same logic to HTH attack. It should be 5pts for +1DC, +1/2 STR adds to damage,--1/4 for damage only according to this.

 

If I apply your illogic to HTH attack, I get +1d6 HTH damage that costs 6 points.  Why should anyone pay 6 points to be able to accomplish a fraction of what a 5 point investment in STR could accomplish?  Buy a Blast with No Range that Cannot be Spread for 2.86 points per 1d6 (and a 20% lower END cost) instead.  Hey, buy it with +1/2 STR adds - it will cost more END, but only 4.29 points per 1d6.  Tack on half END and it costs 5 points per die, and does everything your 6 point HTH attack does.

 

Why can't I buy STR adds to my Flash (eyeball poke) or no Range Drain (bruise, break tendons and bones, etc.)?  Why can't I buy "Ego Adds" or "INT adds" to attacks with appropriate special effects?  Why can't I buy my Leaping "STR Adds", for that matter?  The value of that advantage varies with STR, so applying it to the ability it enhances, rather than the STR itself, cannot help but miscost the ability.

 

"STR adds" violates a core tenet of Hero - you get what you pay for, and you pay for what you get.

 

Often, the "STR can only double an HKA" approach is defended as "Grond's STR can only enhance a stickpin so much".  But nothing stops Grond doing a Combined Attack for 1 point KA + 18d6 Normal damage.  In fact, by RAW, nothing stops a 60 STR character with a 2d6 HKA doing a Combined Attack of 12d6 STR damage + 4d6 HKA.  Show me any rules quote that says otherwise.

 

6 hours ago, Grailknight said:

That ability to be spread is balanced by the ability to add STR.

 

Only if you have appropriately costed the loss of Spreading (-1/4 RAW) and Range (-1/2) by RAW, and the addition of STR (which varies with the underlying STR, so cannot be appropriately costed by an advantage not applied to that STR).  1d6 Blast, STR Adds (even if I accept +1/2), No Range (-1/2), Cannot be Spread (-1/4) comes to a cost of 4.29 per 1d6, not 5 or 6, by the way.

 

STR, can't lift, still adds to Grabs, Escapes, etc. etc.  What does the "blast model" of HTH attack do that added STR would not do, to justify the same, or even a greater, cost?  Added STR does a lot more, so the HTH attack should cost less. 

 

For 4 points, I can enhance all of my Martial Arts attacks by 1 DC - that does a lot more than a HTH attack "only usable with Martial Arts".  What would an HTH attack "only usable with martial arts" cost?  But +5 STR, only to enhance effects of martial maneuvers, seems reasonable at -1/4.  It's actually costed at a much higher limitation, though - it costs 0 END.  Just like skill levels used to add damage, actually, and so we come full circle.

6 hours ago, Grailknight said:

So the rules change because an Advantage is overpriced at at low levels while being a good deal at higher? Seems like the difference between Heroic and Supers is in play.

 

Then let's put that advantage in the rules.  For a +1/2 advantage, you can add the AP of any one characteristic to the ability on which you buy the +1/2 advantage.  If it's a fair value for an HTH attack or a KA, why is it not a fair value for a Drain (he's bruised by my great strength),  a Force Field (INT adds - my great brain enhances my mental shield), or Leaping (my great STR helps me leap for miles)? 

 

Hey, let's expand it - you can add the AP of any one other ability to the one you add the Advantage to.  So I can buy a 2d6 RKA, Blast Adds for 45 points, just like I can buy a 2d6 HKA, Ranged for 45 points.

 

The problem is not that the benefits of the advantage vary with the level invested in the advantaged power.  It is that the value of the advantage DOES  NOT vary with the level of the power on which the advantage is applied, but with the level of a different Power.

 

Why is "HTH attack" different?  Because HTH attacks are already a function of STR, so buying more HTH attacks with no other benefits of STR is much better modeled as limited STR than limited Blast.  "STR without some things it normally does", not "Blast, but take away these things, add these other things and tweak a few more".

 

6 hours ago, Grailknight said:

Just as many buy HKA and STR in that combo as have that concept. Sorta like buying Iron Fist or flaming hands. But only one of these gives a discount. 

 

Why would we have to condense  KA into one power? This method says that you can't add STR to your HTH KA.

 

OK, one more time, really slowly:

 

STR already increases HTH damage, and does other things.  When we add to an existing ability, but restrict what that extra ability can do, we place a limitation on the enhancement to the ability.

 

For example, we have a character with a 12d6 Blast.  If he really exerts himself, he can make that a 15d6 Blast, so he buys +3d6 Blast, 3x END.  He does not buy +15 STR, no lift, does not add to TH attacks or maneuvers, Other Blast Adds (+1/2), 3x END.

 

By the same logic, buying more STR that does not add anything but HTH damage is an addition to STR which is limited to providing HTH damage.  It is not a Blast that is not really a blast but really an increase of STR which only does HTH damage (wall of text).

 

Yes, this method says you cannot add STR to your HKA.  You also can't add it to Running, Leaping, PD, Blast, Drain, Flash or Mental Blast.  One power does not add to another power in Hero.  You can buy more of the same power to make it more powerful (like buying more STR to do more HTH damage).  You can buy more of the same power, with limitations (like more Blast that costs extra END).  You can't buy one power and have it increase a different power (except for an HKA).

 

You want a 2d6 HKA which can be up to 4d6 by applying STR?  Buy a 2d6 HKA (30 points) + 2d6 HKA (requires using 5 STR per HKA DC, -1/4) (30 AP, 24 RP).

 

Is -1/4 the right limitation?  I will bet you will only buy this if you have at least 30 STR.  It is a limitation.  You can't use that 30 STR for something else (so, if you have 60 STR, a combined attack could be a 12d6 Punch + 2d6 HKA, or a 6d6 Punch + 4d6 HKA, but not a 12d6 Punch + 4d6 HKA).  If your STR is drained below 30, you can't use the full extra HKA.  Maybe -1/2 (like Linked) would be more appropriate, instead of the -1/4 (like Lockout, which would probably apply to the STR and the HKA, as I think on it).  So let's make it -1/2.

 

And now you can use that same model to build, say, Mental Blast, 4d6 + 2d6 (requires using 20 INT, -1/2) too.

 

I have never bought into "everyone for whom it is in concept".  We just gravitate away from inefficient concepts.  If the GM says "your concept is a normal human, so you can't have a SPD higher than 4", how many players will see that concept move from "massively trained Normal Batman" to "Super-Soldier Serum Enhanced Captain America"?

 

If I want ClawMan to have a 5d6 HKA (and my GM is OK with a 15 DC attack in the game), but his concept calls for a 15 STR, I can spend 60 points on a 4d6 HKA, 5d6 with STR.

 

Or I can spend 43 points on a 5d6 RKA, No Range, Claws, Cannot be Spread.  Which one do you recommend?  Both provide the mechanic of a 5d6 HKA - why does noe cost 17 points (almost 40%) more than the other?

 

Now maybe you will say "you should not be using RKA to simulate HKA - shame on you for not accepting the point inefficiencies forced upon you by the system - you are a muenster". 

 

OK, then, how about a 5d6 HKA, STR does not add (-1/2) for 50 points (the other option still costs 20% more)?  Why is that superior in concept?

 

All three of my suggested builds deliver a 5d6 KA in HTH range for 7 END - why do the costs vary by so much?  I thought Hero was that game where you get what you pay for, and pay for what you get.

 

6 hours ago, Grailknight said:

That would be fine but now why are you able to add it to your HTH attack? Just buy more HTH attack right?

 

Why buy HTH attack at all?  Just buy more STR.  STR is the base ability to do normal HTH damage. HTH Attack is not "enhanced by STR", it is enhancing that STR for limited purposes only.

 

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