Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Tywyll

Spells versus the Real World

Recommended Posts

So, one thing I DON'T like about HERO is that, while the power system is great for interacting with other powers, there is not a lot of guidance for how it interacts with the environment.

 

For example, I want to create a spell that allows a character to escape entangles and open locks and bindings. I am thinking a cumulative Dispel with Variable Effect.

 

However, how may AP does a lock have? If the character wants to use it on a chest in a dungeon, how many times should they cast it? Who knows???

 

The same problem exists for spells to put out a fire or melt a block of ice... ;(

 

I know there are some rules for fire in the back of the 6E book, but it doesn't give AP if you want to dispel or suppress or drain it. Ditto for a wall of stone or whatever.

 

I wish there were more real world values for environmental effects.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A lock isn't really a Power, nor is it even an effect that is typically statted out using Powers.  

 

Typically, the Powers that are used on a physical lock are Transform (locked to unlocked), Drain (DEF/BODY of the lock), Blast/Killing Blast, Tunneling, or Lockpicking built as a Skill-as-Power.  

 

For things like fire, ice, lightning, etc., you can look in the "Living In A Dangerous World" section to figure out about how much damage an effect will do, then use that as a guesstimate for how many Active Points worth.  

 

Dispel is intended more for active effects (usually attacks) or Powers as they are being activated, rather than continuing effects.  I'd allow it to work on environmental effects like fire, ice, lightning, etc., but not passive effects like rock, water, gravity, air.  At the very least, you want Dispel to target a Power of some kind; in the event of damaging effects, there are a lot of those that fall out as Blast, Killing Blast, Drain, Transform, etc.  What Power does a lock have?  (I know, that's more or less the question you asked.) 

 

As a GM, I would probably look at a different Power.  Namely, what Power could someone use to escape Entangles, untie ropes, open locks and bindings, etc.?  I'd go with Telekinesis with Fine Work.  For the lock opening aspect I'd throw in Lockpicking as a Skill-as-Power.  As an alternative, Contortionist helps you escape Entangles, which suggests an alternative.  Lockpicking (Skill-as-Power) plus Contortionist (Skill-as-Power).  

 

In one of the 6e supplements (either Champions Powers or HERO System Grimoire) there is an example of a lock opening power (I'm pretty sure it's a spell, and I'm pretty sure it's in Grimoire) that's built using Lockpicking.  I'd look at that for an example of something in a published product.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  Master Goodwin’s post above is most helpful and accurate about how the points and powers work in the system, but I want to try the question from a different angle.

  Magic is all about intent, and at least to me it seems that a spell for opening locks would be different from one about one that banishes entangles.  

  While a power with variable effect might be book legal, if I were the GM I might not let a player have a power that made no sense to their special effect.

   I once had a player running a mutant weather controller “like Storm”.  After a while he wanted to play a mentalist, but didn’t want to start from scratch so he tried to sell me on the idea that since the weather/lightning was electrically based that he could then read the electric impulses in the brain and justify telepathy and telekenisis.  
  I told him he had three options.  1) Build a brand new character.  2) He could “crash” the old character and take half the points towards a new one. (a house rule at the time)  3) Let me come up with an episode to explain the change in powers. (LSH’s Lightning Lass becomes Light Lass)  He wasn’t happy with any of them. He wanted to be a psionic who also controlled the weather.  We finally decided that he could play whatever he wanted for other GM’s in the group (if they let him) but not in my campaign.

  A long story not made short (sorry) but basically I was wondering what kind of spell would give you all the effects you want.  You might have to go with more than one slot to do everything you want.  Maybe not as inexpensive that way, but more in line with a cohesive special effect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Chris Goodwin said:

A lock isn't really a Power, nor is it even an effect that is typically statted out using Powers.  

 

Typically, the Powers that are used on a physical lock are Transform (locked to unlocked), Drain (DEF/BODY of the lock), Blast/Killing Blast, Tunneling, or Lockpicking built as a Skill-as-Power.  

 

For things like fire, ice, lightning, etc., you can look in the "Living In A Dangerous World" section to figure out about how much damage an effect will do, then use that as a guesstimate for how many Active Points worth.  

 

Dispel is intended more for active effects (usually attacks) or Powers as they are being activated, rather than continuing effects.  I'd allow it to work on environmental effects like fire, ice, lightning, etc., but not passive effects like rock, water, gravity, air.  At the very least, you want Dispel to target a Power of some kind; in the event of damaging effects, there are a lot of those that fall out as Blast, Killing Blast, Drain, Transform, etc.  What Power does a lock have?  (I know, that's more or less the question you asked.) 

 

As a GM, I would probably look at a different Power.  Namely, what Power could someone use to escape Entangles, untie ropes, open locks and bindings, etc.?  I'd go with Telekinesis with Fine Work.  For the lock opening aspect I'd throw in Lockpicking as a Skill-as-Power.  As an alternative, Contortionist helps you escape Entangles, which suggests an alternative.  Lockpicking (Skill-as-Power) plus Contortionist (Skill-as-Power).  

 

In one of the 6e supplements (either Champions Powers or HERO System Grimoire) there is an example of a lock opening power (I'm pretty sure it's a spell, and I'm pretty sure it's in Grimoire) that's built using Lockpicking.  I'd look at that for an example of something in a published product.  

 

So my issue with this are several fold:

1) If the binding is defined as an entangle, skills suddenly don't work...so that option doesn't really fly for me.

2) Dispels and Drains and other powers should interact with the environment, otherwise you are essentially limiting the usefulness of powers (that or skill should interact with powers).

 

I know this is a holdover from 3rd edition where you had Champions and then you had the various Heroic games and they got smooshed together in 4th edition without much thought. This led to kludges like a spell that needs to be a three or four power Multipower to get out of bindings because it has to cover all the options. To me, that seems unnecessary (or at least inelegant). The game should define the real world with its power system so a character can use their powers (or skills) within that framework.

 

This has always been a gripe for me...it makes doing superhero activities beyond punching badguys hard to judge. How strong is a tornado? How many dice does a forrest fire have? Etc. etc. etc.

 

I find the necessity to use three or four different power builds to create a single effect (escape from binding/open locks/etc) to be really aesthetically unappealing. It also is problematic because in my own campaign magic systems are entirely MPs...it means the character needs 3-4 'spells' to do the same thing. One spell to unlock a 'fictional lock' but another to dispel an entangle, even if that entangle is defined as wrapping someone up in a real chain and lock...

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, Tjack said:

  Master Goodwin’s post above is most helpful and accurate about how the points and powers work in the system, but I want to try the question from a different angle.

  Magic is all about intent, and at least to me it seems that a spell for opening locks would be different from one about one that banishes entangles.  

  While a power with variable effect might be book legal, if I were the GM I might not let a player have a power that made no sense to their special effect.

   I once had a player running a mutant weather controller “like Storm”.  After a while he wanted to play a mentalist, but didn’t want to start from scratch so he tried to sell me on the idea that since the weather/lightning was electrically based that he could then read the electric impulses in the brain and justify telepathy and telekenisis.  
  I told him he had three options.  1) Build a brand new character.  2) He could “crash” the old character and take half the points towards a new one. (a house rule at the time)  3) Let me come up with an episode to explain the change in powers. (LSH’s Lightning Lass becomes Light Lass)  He wasn’t happy with any of them. He wanted to be a psionic who also controlled the weather.  We finally decided that he could play whatever he wanted for other GM’s in the group (if they let him) but not in my campaign.

  A long story not made short (sorry) but basically I was wondering what kind of spell would give you all the effects you want.  You might have to go with more than one slot to do everything you want.  Maybe not as inexpensive that way, but more in line with a cohesive special effect.

Respectfully, I couldn't disagree more with "This spell has no clear special effect." It's an incredibly elegant special effect, especially because it is magic and not superpowers. The spell isn't some kind of idiot lockpicking ghost, or merely "telekinesis with fine control so he can pick the lock without lockpick, oooooh." Those obviously do not free you from an entangle. No, the spell could be called, "Liberate." It just... liberates things. Locks unlock themselves, ropes untie themselves, chains break, the spell liberates anything which is physically confined in some sort of concrete, physical way. It can't change the intentions of captors or make them let you go, it can't magically teleport a priceless jewel out of a guarded museum, and it can't emancipate you in the eyes of the law. But if you were trapped in a steel cage welded shut, it could break the cage. If you were buried alive, it would make the soil sink around you and the casket come unnailed. This is a wicked cool spell.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not being funny here; this is quite sincere:

 

Separate the special effects results (what it looks like) from the mechanical effects (what it actually does--shoot for thee words or so) and review your options again. 

 

I think you will find that you end up with two separate builds:

 

One for "open locks" and one for "release fetters." 

 

I may be wrong, but the smallest I can boil that down to is two builds.  Either way, split what it looks like away from what it does; you may yet find a single thing that does just what you're looking for. 

 

Undoubtedly this won't help, but the best I came up with is to fall back to the Trifecta of Cobble:

 

Desolidification; only versus restraints; offers no defense; character does not become incorporeal. 

 

Transform: locked to unlocked. 

 

 

On the releasing fetters spell, a GM may or may not require you to take Variable Special Effects. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Specifically relating to locks and entangles, etc... remember that the special effect of the entangle does have a baring  on how to escape them. 

 

From 6th Ed Vol.1 pg. 216:

 

Quote

find some other appropriate method of escape
based on the special effect of the Entangle (for
example, using Contortionist to get out of
handcuffs).

 

 

This means that if the entangle is built as chains and a lock, handcuffs, a rope tied in a knot or whatever physical manifestation like that, then picking the lock, opening the lock, untying the knot, or whatever will "dispel (for lack of a better word)" the entangle. You don't need two separate spells or powers to do that. A simple unlock spell will handle both. 

Which makes sense a cop puts handcuffs on someone, he doesn't need to then "dispel" the entangle with some special power, he just uses a key to unlock them. And any character that can pick locks and escape without "dispelling" the Entangle power. 

 

This is one of those situations where the Special Effect specifically allows for other ways of countering the power without needing "Dispel X" or "Drain X", common sense is the main thing here. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Tywyll said:

1) If the binding is defined as an entangle, skills suddenly don't work...so that option doesn't really fly for me.

 

Contortionist explicitly lets you escape from Entangles and Grabs. Also, SFX.  

 

I'm going to combine my suggestions.  Telekinesis with Fine Work, plus Contortionist, plus Lockpicking.  Buy all of them with Area of Effect if that's the intent.  If your GM, or you as GM, require Enhanced Senses with it, I'd say they should be able to take a Limitation if they're only used by the spell to target the abilities.  

 

  

1 hour ago, Tywyll said:

2) Dispels and Drains and other powers should interact with the environment, otherwise you are essentially limiting the usefulness of powers (that or skill should interact with powers).

 

There needs to be something for a Dispel to Dispel.  Drain can affect an object's PD, ED, and BODY, but Dispel explicitly can't (they're Characteristics).  

 

There's no game mechanic that I'm aware of that a lock is or has that is a Power that can be Dispelled, and I'm not sure there should be.  (Or, at least, I'm not sure there should reasonably be.  This reminds of me of when it was in vogue to try to design things such as a towel or a cereal bowl using HERO System Powers.  As an exercise, maybe, but that way lies "You can't have a cereal bowl because you didn't pay points for it.")

 

47 minutes ago, Shoug said:

Respectfully, I couldn't disagree more with "This spell has no clear special effect." It's an incredibly elegant special effect, especially because it is magic and not superpowers. The spell isn't some kind of idiot lockpicking ghost, or merely "telekinesis with fine control so he can pick the lock without lockpick, oooooh." Those obviously do not free you from an entangle. No, the spell could be called, "Liberate." It just... liberates things. Locks unlock themselves, ropes untie themselves, chains break, the spell liberates anything which is physically confined in some sort of concrete, physical way. It can't change the intentions of captors or make them let you go, it can't magically teleport a priceless jewel out of a guarded museum, and it can't emancipate you in the eyes of the law. But if you were trapped in a steel cage welded shut, it could break the cage. If you were buried alive, it would make the soil sink around you and the casket come unnailed. This is a wicked cool spell.

 

I am actually in agreement with you here.  The special effect is good; the mechanics are the hard part.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Shoug said:

Respectfully, I couldn't disagree more with "This spell has no clear special effect." It's an incredibly elegant special effect, especially because it is magic and not superpowers. The spell isn't some kind of idiot lockpicking ghost, or merely "telekinesis with fine control so he can pick the lock without lockpick, oooooh." Those obviously do not free you from an entangle. No, the spell could be called, "Liberate." It just... liberates things. Locks unlock themselves, ropes untie themselves, chains break, the spell liberates anything which is physically confined in some sort of concrete, physical way. It can't change the intentions of captors or make them let you go, it can't magically teleport a priceless jewel out of a guarded museum, and it can't emancipate you in the eyes of the law. But if you were trapped in a steel cage welded shut, it could break the cage. If you were buried alive, it would make the soil sink around you and the casket come unnailed. This is a wicked cool spell.

I in turn disagree. 

FRED says "The special effects of a Power define how it works, what it looks like, and any other incidental effects associated with it.". 

Your description of "it just does" doesn't do that in my eyes.  It defines what the power does, yes, but not how.  It's a perfect black box labeled "Magic".  To me that's not elegant, that's just a fancy way to leave the field blank. 

It also doesn't tell me anything about the power.  I have no clue what this looks like, sounds like, etc.  "Magic" doesn't tell me any of that.  I can't even see any possible incidental effects because the spell has been purely defined in terms of game mechanics. 

As far as I'm concerned, you're trying to not have SFX for the power. 

 

Compare that to the lockpicking ghost (Looks like spectral fog, probably makes the lock feel chilly without being physically cold, might sound like distant whispers or lamentations, the ghost's behavior can be used to indicate the nature of the area or lock, etc). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a spell of unbinding.  "Binding" can have a metaphysical meaning in terms of the magic system, and the spell of unbinding does exactly what it says.  Tywyll, is this a reasonably accurate description?  

 

If it unbinds binding spells, not just physical bonds, then you might want to add a Dispel component against spells using Entangle, Barrier, and Telekinesis.  

 

More generally, usually DEF, BODY, and/or dice of damage are the way environmental effects interact, and those are easy enough to oppose with Powers including Dispel.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Chris as to the metaphysical definition, particularly if one is dealing with "magic," where the logic of it is imaginative rather than realistic.

 

For example, the spell could draw on the power of the Archetype of Chaos, to counter any manifestation of Order which restricts a being's freedom to act.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  To any and all...I never meant to say that one spell COULDN’T exist to do everything that Tywyll was going for.
  It’s just in the original post he never stated the the nature of the spell itself and I was saying how some GM’s like myself would balk at a book legal power if they didn’t agree with it fitting in special effect wise. And he might want to think thru the options.

  The story I used as illustration was about a player with a legal and correct write-up that I felt violated his special effect.  For example if the Flash suddenly developed telepathy, you would say “this makes no sense”.  And the answer “Well, he has the points for it.” doesn’t help.

  I may be wrong but I’ve always come down more on the side of special effect over point totals in the game.  Too much of either side can ruin things but IMHO that’s how I see it.

  I invite discussion and debate on this subject, but it may be better off done in another thread.

   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Gnome BODY (important!) said:

I in turn disagree. 

FRED says "The special effects of a Power define how it works, what it looks like, and any other incidental effects associated with it.". 

Your description of "it just does" doesn't do that in my eyes.  It defines what the power does, yes, but not how.  It's a perfect black box labeled "Magic".  To me that's not elegant, that's just a fancy way to leave the field blank. 

It also doesn't tell me anything about the power.  I have no clue what this looks like, sounds like, etc.  "Magic" doesn't tell me any of that.  I can't even see any possible incidental effects because the spell has been purely defined in terms of game mechanics. 

As far as I'm concerned, you're trying to not have SFX for the power. 

 

Compare that to the lockpicking ghost (Looks like spectral fog, probably makes the lock feel chilly without being physically cold, might sound like distant whispers or lamentations, the ghost's behavior can be used to indicate the nature of the area or lock, etc). 

I never said the special effects justify any kind of mechanical handwave. Of course he will have to buy some kind of strange molecule of Linked powers in order to achieve his desired game effect. All I was saying is that the special effect is cool. It's delicious and beautiful. It's magical. If feels like something a powerful wizard from some classic fantasy would do. Not hard magic, but soft (but in the context of Hero, of course it would be "hard").

"Reinard heard footsteps coming from the dark hallway at the end of which his cell was located. His heart dropped when he saw Dohl Faendar, the wizard. 'You're time has not yet come.' he said, and Reinard's cell door fell ajar."

It's mysterious and badass and is a black box because magic (at times, depending on the setting) is a black box. "Thaumaturgy" literally translates to "Miracle Working." It's a miracle. To me, SFX doesn't mean, "What does it look like?" but "What is the concept you're trying to capture?" I think the concept here is perfectly strong enough to justify building such a unified power as "picks locks and escapes entangles."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Shoug said:

I never said the special effects justify any kind of mechanical handwave. Of course he will have to buy some kind of strange molecule of Linked powers in order to achieve his desired game effect. All I was saying is that the special effect is cool. It's delicious and beautiful. It's magical. If feels like something a powerful wizard from some classic fantasy would do. Not hard magic, but soft (but in the context of Hero, of course it would be "hard").

"Reinard heard footsteps coming from the dark hallway at the end of which his cell was located. His heart dropped when he saw Dohl Faendar, the wizard. 'You're time has not yet come.' he said, and Reinard's cell door fell ajar."

It's mysterious and badass and is a black box because magic (at times, depending on the setting) is a black box. "Thaumaturgy" literally translates to "Miracle Working." It's a miracle. To me, SFX doesn't mean, "What does it look like?" but "What is the concept you're trying to capture?" I think the concept here is perfectly strong enough to justify building such a unified power as "picks locks and escapes entangles."

The special effect of just "Magic" is, to me, incomplete information, a "mechanical handwave".  It fails to engage with the definition of SFX, which to me includes all perceivable effects and world-logic. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Shoug said:

Respectfully, I couldn't disagree more with "This spell has no clear special effect." It's an incredibly elegant special effect, especially because it is magic and not superpowers. The spell isn't some kind of idiot lockpicking ghost, or merely "telekinesis with fine control so he can pick the lock without lockpick, oooooh." Those obviously do not free you from an entangle. No, the spell could be called, "Liberate." It just... liberates things. Locks unlock themselves, ropes untie themselves, chains break, the spell liberates anything which is physically confined in some sort of concrete, physical way. It can't change the intentions of captors or make them let you go, it can't magically teleport a priceless jewel out of a guarded museum, and it can't emancipate you in the eyes of the law. But if you were trapped in a steel cage welded shut, it could break the cage. If you were buried alive, it would make the soil sink around you and the casket come unnailed. This is a wicked cool spell.

 

Thank  you. Yes, that is exactly what I'm trying to create. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, mallet said:

Specifically relating to locks and entangles, etc... remember that the special effect of the entangle does have a baring  on how to escape them. 

 

From 6th Ed Vol.1 pg. 216:

 

 

 

This means that if the entangle is built as chains and a lock, handcuffs, a rope tied in a knot or whatever physical manifestation like that, then picking the lock, opening the lock, untying the knot, or whatever will "dispel (for lack of a better word)" the entangle. You don't need two separate spells or powers to do that. A simple unlock spell will handle both. 

Which makes sense a cop puts handcuffs on someone, he doesn't need to then "dispel" the entangle with some special power, he just uses a key to unlock them. And any character that can pick locks and escape without "dispelling" the Entangle power. 

 

This is one of those situations where the Special Effect specifically allows for other ways of countering the power without needing "Dispel X" or "Drain X", common sense is the main thing here. 

 

How does one determine the difficulty of picking an 'entangle'? I can buy a masterwork lock with a penalty to being unlocked. Does a 2d6 Entangle suffer that? Also what about a 10d6?

 

And the spell is about granting a target (not just the caster) freedom, so it should really work on any entangle, hence my looking at Dispel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Chris Goodwin said:

It's a spell of unbinding.  "Binding" can have a metaphysical meaning in terms of the magic system, and the spell of unbinding does exactly what it says.  Tywyll, is this a reasonably accurate description?  

 

If it unbinds binding spells, not just physical bonds, then you might want to add a Dispel component against spells using Entangle, Barrier, and Telekinesis.  

 

More generally, usually DEF, BODY, and/or dice of damage are the way environmental effects interact, and those are easy enough to oppose with Powers including Dispel.  

 

Yes, the character worships a goddess who's portfolio is freedom, so a spell that can free a target from any binding or restraint, be it a chain, a spider's web, a paralysis spell is what I'm trying to create. Hence looking at Dispel. This is further complicated that I need to cram as much as I can into a single slot of a multipower, because magic in my setting is built as MPs, where characters have limited numbers of slot based on a stat/3. If I could Dispel a physical object as well an active power, that would elegantly resolve my issue, but I'm beginning to think a Drain might be the most suitable solution. 

 

But ignoring that for a moment, the fact that real world objects don't have values that powers can easily interact with is still a gripe. No I don't want bowls to have stats, but I do want to know how much Transform I need to roll to create food from thin air, or create a chain, or a lock that has a -3 to peing picked. I want to know how much strength or telekenisis I need to hold back a tsunami or a tornado.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Lord Liaden said:

I agree with Chris as to the metaphysical definition, particularly if one is dealing with "magic," where the logic of it is imaginative rather than realistic.

 

For example, the spell could draw on the power of the Archetype of Chaos, to counter any manifestation of Order which restricts a being's freedom to act.

Being a Goddess of Chaos, yeah, that's partially what's going on here. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Time to use one of the go to kludge powers.

 

So, Extra Dimensional Movement, Usable as an Attack, Variable SFX with only vs Restraints is the what I'm coming up with here. 

 

Banish that lock or barrier to Chaos while leaving everything around it untouched.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Chris Goodwin said:

There's no game mechanic that I'm aware of that a lock is or has that is a Power that can be Dispelled, and I'm not sure there should be.  (Or, at least, I'm not sure there should reasonably be.  This reminds of me of when it was in vogue to try to design things such as a towel or a cereal bowl using HERO System Powers.  As an exercise, maybe, but that way lies "You can't have a cereal bowl because you didn't pay points for it.")

 

 

In general, I agree with you. But when handcuffs are officially statted as Entangles and ropes as Cling (at least I've seen them handled that way), that kind of implies everything is a power and therefore open to being Dispelled. I mean, if I can dispel someone's sword or armor, why not a lock? Why not a wall?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Grailknight said:

Time to use one of the go to kludge powers.

 

So, Extra Dimensional Movement, Usable as an Attack, Variable SFX with only vs Restraints is the what I'm coming up with here. 

 

Banish that lock or barrier to Chaos while leaving everything around it untouched.

That...might work actually. I'd prefer the locks open or restraints fall off the captive, but that might work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Tywyll said:

That...might work actually. I'd prefer the locks open or restraints fall off the captive, but that might work.

 

I was thinking the same Power construct, but decided not to suggest it for fear of it seeming too radical or "kludgy." I should have known better -- these are Hero gamers. :stupid:

 

But remember, EDM is just the mechanic. The Special Effect can look exactly as you describe it.

 

OTOH that Power construct requires a defined Defense. I would suggest that since since your character's patron goddess is of Chaos, that any barrier or restraint specifically consecrated to a god of Order, or spell drawing on the power of Order, would be immune to this unbinding spell.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  

7 hours ago, Tywyll said:

 

In general, I agree with you. But when handcuffs are officially statted as Entangles and ropes as Cling (at least I've seen them handled that way), that kind of implies everything is a power and therefore open to being Dispelled. I mean, if I can dispel someone's sword or armor, why not a lock? Why not a wall?

 

In some cases, and depending on genre, the handcuffs might have a -1/4 Real Equipment Limitation, akin to Real Weapon and Real Armor.  That Limitation would certainly allow it to be picked.  Entangle, Barrier, and Transform specifically are Instant Powers with an effect that lasts beyond the use of the Power, in much the same way as damage does.  You couldn't Dispel damage, so can you Dispel a created Entangle, Barrier, or Wall?  It also depends on the magic system; I've designed magic systems in which those Powers, and a few others (Mental Powers mainly) can be Dispelled after they're created.  You could either build it into the Power as a Limitation, or state it as one of the default conditions of your magic system.  

 

I think Suppress is what you'd want to use rather than Dispel.  In 5e it's its own Power; in 6e it's a build based on Drain.  Dispel against armor is definitely against a Power (Resistant Protection), while there's some... thought... about whether you can use Dispel on a sword's HKA.  My view is that there's some definitional stuff going on so that no, you can't ordinarily, but I imagine I'm in the minority; for instance, HKA is an Instant Power, so when you attack someone with your sword, technically you're activating the Killing Attack, Hand-to-hand Power (0 Phase action) then attacking with it (Half-Phase combat action).  You can't really Dispel a Power that is not currently activated, so the only time you could Dispel the HKA is when they're actually attacking with it.  I'll admit that my view is getting pretty deep into the weeds, though, and that it would be easier just to allow it.  

 

Alternatively...

 

3 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

Good thread.  I'd go with small AoE Transform of Things that Restrain to Things that Don't Restrain.  So cages fall apart, manacles fall off, coffins open, etc.

 

seems like a reasonably good option.  Transform is one of the usual kludge Powers, but in this case I think it's an elegant use of it to represent the unbinding spell. 

 

8 hours ago, Tywyll said:

But ignoring that for a moment, the fact that real world objects don't have values that powers can easily interact with is still a gripe. No I don't want bowls to have stats, but I do want to know how much Transform I need to roll to create food from thin air, or create a chain, or a lock that has a -3 to peing picked. I want to know how much strength or telekenisis I need to hold back a tsunami or a tornado.

 

With Transform, there are a couple of competing system level imperatives; typically, creating food, chain, or lock, are the results of using other Powers (Life Support and Entangle respectively) and would be used instead of Transform.  As a GM you can decide to handwave these.  

 

Assuming you (or the GM, if that's not you) have done so... with Transform, you'd ordinarily roll the dice, and need to achieve twice the target's BODY in order to Transform it.  An easy rule of thumb is that when creating objects or substances out of thin air, you can create half the BODY roll worth of the substance.  So for example, if you're creating ice using Transform: Thin Air to Ice, and you roll 10 BODY on your Transform dice, you're creating (10 / 2) 5 BODY worth of ice.  On the Object BODY table in the Breaking Things section (6e2 p. 172, but it's in 5ER, 5E, and the BBB as well, towards the back) 5 BODY worth of unliving is 25kg, so that 5 BODY comes out to 25kg of ice.  (The Breaking Things section can be generally helpful when figuring out how much BODY, X kilograms of something has, or the DEF and BODY of a wall of material Y, at Z millimeters thick.)

 

Assuming you don't want to use Transform for some reason, Entangle creates an object with 1 rPD, 1 rED, and 1d6 Normal dice of BODY (average of 1) for 10 points; Barrier uses +1 point for +1 BODY, +3 points for +2 rPD or rED.  The Advanced Player's Guide 2 includes a new Power: Object Creation, based on these costs: 20 points for an object up to 2 rPD, 2 rED, 2 BODY, +3 points for +2rPD, +2 rED, or +3 BODY.  Create Object specifically disallows using Create Object to create an object that another Power reasonably would, including chains (Entangle) and swords (HKA) as examples, but also warns the GM and players not to strain the definition of "reasonably" too hard, meaning that if it makes sense and isn't abused, then yes, you can let Object Creation create swords. 

 

I recommend buying the APGs if you don't have them, even if you don't use 6th edition, because they're pretty applicable to 5th as well.  

 

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...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...