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Showing content with the highest reputation since 06/19/2019 in all areas

  1. 9 points
    This will be long and off current discussion topics, for which I apologize. As we all know, Donald Trump lies, constantly. Some lies are big, such as his tariffs extracting billions of dollars from China. Some are small, such as denying he said something a few days before, when it’s on film that he said it. Now we’re seeing the consequences with the oil tanker attacks. First, here's a bit of history about why honesty matters. Many years ago when I was in college, I attended a talk sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa that has stuck with me. A University of Washington emeritus professor spoke about his time as an advisor for Franklin D. Roosevelt during World War Two. There was debate in the administration about whether to suppress news about lost battles in the Pacific and about domestic troubles such as labor actions. This professor said no: “The government of the United States of America must never be seen to lie.” His reasoning was simple. Any lie will be exposed, and any suppressed information will get out – and probably sooner rather than later. Any attempt would fail, and reduce American credibility at home and abroad. So why does credibility matter in war? “Today, the truth seems bad for us and good for out enemies. Tomorrow, the truth will be good for us and bad for our enemies.” The Axis powers lied to their people – a lot. It was important, the professor said, that the people of the Axis countries trusted American promises. An in the case of Japan, it was vitally important that the leaders trusted American promises. See, the Roosevelt administration knew Japan couldn’t win. The only questions were how long it would take and how high the cost would be for the US to win. And this was the project of which the professor was a part: “the most precisely focused propaganda campaign in history,” aimed at Emperor Hirohito and the half-dozen or so people with real power in the Japanese government. They had to be convinced that surrender to the US was not suicide. In particular, that the Emperor would be spared. And it worked. Yes, the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were important in crushing the will to resist. But the professor believes it helped that for years, very quiet diplomacy had been going on, telling the Japanese high command that unconditional surrender wasn’t really unconditional: The US would be generous in victory, and the Emperor would still live and rule. The Roosevelt administration told the truth about defeats and domestic troubles. And it worked. The back-channel promises were believed, and Hirohito ordered Japan to surrender. The promises were kept, too. Now look at the present. The Trump administration says irrefutable evidence that Iran attacked the oil tankers, though it won’t share anything except a grainy video that proves nothing. And I don’t believe it. Here’s another historical incident. Between the First and Second Gulf Wars, Iraq’s prime minister Tariq Aziz appeared frequently on the BBC to respond to American accusations. He lied, a lot. When BBC presenters called him on his lies, he denied he’d ever said such a thing, even though it was on tape and millions of people had heard him. So when the Bush Jr. administration claimed Iraq still had WMDs, and Aziz insisted that no, Iraq didn’t, I thought Aziz was lying. Turns out, for once he told the truth. I found that the most surprising event of the whole invasion. Okay, it could be Iran attacked the tankers. That’s plausible. The BBC, the Economist and other news sources say the Iranian government is getting desperate, and there are hothead factions that want open confrontation with the US. But I won’t take this administration’s word for it. Trump lies so much, and his officials repeat the lies so much, that I don’t trust anything they claim. I find it equally plausible that someone else attacked the tankers. Either the Trumpies are duped, or they are supporting the fraud. Other countries don’t seem that ready to take the administration’s word for Iran’s guilt, either. That is a loss of American influence, as a direct result of Trump’s lies. So who else might it be? I think Saudi Arabia tops the list of suspects. Experts who claim to know such things say the Saudi government is locked in a struggle against Iran for influence across the Middle East, of which the war in Yemen is merely one front. Prince Mohammed bin Salman has also shown a fondness for dirty tricks (and considerable hot-headedness) in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. So maybe MBS thinks that he can sucker the US into war with Iran and destroying Saudi’s hated rival for him. Could the Trump administration itself be behind the attacks? No. This administration is so leaky it can’t keep anything secret. But the administration has allies: far-right business tycoons who see Trump as the key to lock in their own political influence. Some may be simple plutocrats; others, Evangelical extremists; and others, racists and anti-immigrant bigots. I suppose they could hire mercenaries. (Maybe from Xe, formerly Blackwater, created by one such far-right wacko, Erik Prince.) I would like to believe I’m just being paranoid. After all, treating suspected motivation as evidence is a hallmark of conspiracy theory nuttiness. But enough crazy things – or at least wildly irresponsible things – have happened lately that I can no longer brush aside such suspicions with a jaunty, “Nah, it could never happen.” Dean Shomshak
  2. 7 points
    My son, @Scything, has started playing the Hero System. Yesterday he asked me for a Hero Designer license so that he can make characters on his own. Hero Designer: the multi-generational Hero System character creation software
  3. 6 points
    I have to address one point that I keep reading and hearing mistakenly asserted. People entering the United States at other than an established checkpoint, who claim refugee status and request asylum, are not entering the country illegally. American law grants them the right to enter and remain within the United States until their claim for asylum is reviewed. This is done because people suffering persecution in their home countries are rarely allowed to travel freely to points of entry in potential sanctuary countries. Moreover, asylum seekers who enter the United States between those points of entry can exit custody on payment of a bond, and an immigration judge has the jurisdiction to reduce or even waive the bond if circumstances warrant. OTOH people arriving at a point of entry can't pay a bond -- their disposition is wholly at the discretion of ICE officials. Given the publicized attitude of the current American government toward immigrants, that incentivizes crossing the American border at some other location.
  4. 6 points
    Since it seems the sticking point is explaining how Attack Rolls (which fundamentally work exactly like Skill Rolls) work; let's try. Attack Skill = 11+OCV. Literally forget everything else about OCV, DCV, and Combat. Just have them write down Attack Skill, 15- Edit: forgot, you only ever need to do this once, at character creation. Like you only ever really calculate you skill rolls once, at character creation. Skill Rolls: How much you roll under your Skill is how much you succeed by. If you have a Lockpick Skill of 14- and you roll a 10, you succeeded by 4. What does that mean? Well, the GM assigned a difficulty of 2 to the Lock. So, any roll that succeeds by 2 or more unlocks. (in Hero Combat Terms, the Lock has a DCV of 2, and your Lockpick Roll hit a DCV of 4 or lower, the explanations go both ways, because it's literally the same math.) Moving back to Combat; You make an Attack Roll, you roll a 9, you have succeeded by 6 on your Attack Roll. What does that mean? Well, DCV is just a target difficulty, like with Skills. Your target has a Difficulty of 5, you hit if you succeed by 5 or more. Modifiers: Attack Modifiers adjust the success level of the Attack Roll, just like Skill Modifiers adjust the success level of the Skill Roll. You can either add this onto the Skill Roll directly, or you can add it to the Success Level after the roll - the math is the same. If you have +1 to OCV you can either say your Attack Skill goes up to 16- or just add 1 to your Success Roll. Defense Modifiers adjust the target number, normally Skill Challenges have static target numbers (the Lock does not become more difficult or less difficult, typically, one attempt to the next), but Combat is fluid and sometimes positions change and the Target Number moves. Still - you're just adjsuting the target number, either yours or the GM adjusting the NPCs. And while this is typically yet another number to keep track of in combat, it's not especially unique to Hero - D&D has plenty of spells that adjust the AC modifier on the fly (heck, even as a reaction in the same Action sequence). Once you strip out the, poorly presented IMO, formula in Hero and literally treat Attacking like any other Skill Challenge you only need to teach one mathematical idea. In or out of combat, Attack Rolls are just Combat Skill Challenges and Skills are just Non-Combat Attack Challenges.
  5. 6 points
    RDU Neil

    Ideas from Other Game Systems

    I actually included something similar (after reading Blades in the Dark)... calling it "The Plan" in my game. I already have a bennie system with "Luck Chits" and I've been experimenting with a relatively simple process. 1. When a scenario calls for it, players come up with a general "plan of attack"... like "We want the infiltrate the club in disguise, after having hacked the security cameras, and gotten a decent floorplan. The goal is to narrow down where the hostage might be kept, and so our assault is fast and quick, with a planned getaway." That's it... no long involved arguing about how many grenades you are packing, or what language your hacking program is written in, or whatever... quick, general, covers the basic idea. 2. Each player/PC gets to role a "Prep" roll based on their skill/expertise/contacts, to contribute to "The Plan". (i.e. the hacker rolls to say "I'm gaining access to the security network through cables running through tunnels under the club." and the faceman says "I'm organizing our local support to have watchers on the street and around the building and a getaway driver." and the ninja says, "I'm going to infiltrate and get in position way ahead of time, before things go down." whatever...) Based on how well they roll, they get contribute plusses or minuses to "The Plan" roll. for example... hacker rolls well, that says he is in, with full view of all cameras, give a +2 to "The Plan" roll... but ninja rolled badly, he was able to get inside, but unable to get far due to unexpected employees showing up and can't break cover"... -1 to The Plan roll. The rolls help narrate the "set up montage" 3. Then, based on the total plusses or minuses... a player with Tactics or Teamwork... rolls. Based on how well they roll... the players gain Luck Chits for the group as a whole, that can be utilzed when necessary to say "I planned for this!" when they run into some obstacle in the actual op. For example, the PCs could only infiltrate with light weapons... but once inside, realized they were likely heavily out gunned. The ninja spent a chit saying, "I planned for this, and on my way in, I left a duffle bag of guns on the roof of the elevator off the kitchen." The PCs are then able to pick up a couple assault rifles and a shotgun before heading for the penthouse. A few more tweaks (like I set a number based on how difficult the target it... from Easy to Hyper Secure (infiltrating a night club owned by gangsters is easier than infiltrating an NSA black site)... but generally that's it. Players/PCs contribute to "The Plan"... a single roll is then made to determine how effectively the plan was up to the point of "Go" when the actual, moment to moment play begins... and a good roll provides "I planned for that..." bennies... or not if the plan wasn't so good. Have just recently begun trying it, but it works alright and I'm committed to using basic HERO skills and contacts, etc.... just using them in a different light.
  6. 6 points
    There is "role playing", a foreign concept to many new to the hobby. And there is "game", which tends to mean "win or lose". Aligning the game to the role playing so that success is achieved by good role playing is good game design, whether embedded into the system or applied by the GM. If following the genre conventions and playing a heroic character means a lack of success in the game, then the game is a failure. Those heroes who embrace the heroic code, in genre, emerge victorious in the source material. One old article on the Star Trek RPG of the day made two excellent points. First, when offered the chance to embrace certain death in order to save a member of his crew, the Captain will always accept without hesitation. To do otherwise is a failure by the player to role play within the genre. Second, when that offer has been accepted, there will always be a way out, with a successful end to the scenario. To have no such way out is a far greater failure by the GM to role play within the genre. Too often, the GM who cannot understand why his players will not "play within the genre", or "play heroic characters" or whatever terms one wished to adopt, is the problem - his game and GM style penalizes playing within the genre, so his players resist, wishing to "win", and the GM cannot see that the failure to embrace the genre is as much, or more, with his GM style.
  7. 5 points
    Ya. I've been doing narrative and rules lite games for the last six to seven years (Fate Accelerated is a favorite; if you haven't checked out my Pathfinder Fate Accelerated stuff you might find it interesting), and only just came back to the Hero System by request of @WilyQuixote (who is a Hero System diehard player) and @Scything who became Hero System curious after years of hearing about past Hero System campaigns and from looking at stuff on my website. I think the essence of the HS is the SPD chart, the 3d6 bell curve for resolution, a pool of D6 for effect, separate STUN and BODY stats, maneuvers have CV modifiers built into them, sandboxy point buy vs class / level / tree. More limited things cost less than less limited things. Mechanically similar things use the same rules vs being arbitrarily redefined. The rest of it is largely embellishment, for me.
  8. 4 points
    The volume doesn't excuse it. You take custody of a person, you are responsible for their well-being, full stop, no excuses.
  9. 4 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

  10. 4 points
  11. 4 points
  12. 4 points
    Duke Bushido

    Duke's scans

    Okay, guys. It's done. Now I've got to get Jason's attention and get it to him. Then it's on to the next one: I reckon I'll start with the first few Adventurers Clubs that a forum member was kind enough to loan me before deciding where to go next. Star HERO (pet project) and Cyber HERO got back-burnered now that there are actual scans of those products in existence (though really: they could be a lot better. ). I'm going to tell you straight-up that there is a thing in the Western HERO final version that bugs me: The spine and the rear cover don't align quite properly. However, I'm done. I'm just done. I've been using my precious and rare spare time on this, wedging it in here and there-- sometimes working on it _literally_ less than five minutes at a time, and what? Since November last year? I'm done. I'm including the covers and spine as separate elements for anyone wishing to make corrections on their own. I know it was a labor of love, but I just can't look at it any more...... Birdy's got to get the hell out of this nest!
  13. 4 points
    It's my opinion that rulebook\sourcebook art is the secret sauce\silver bullet of RPGs. To the point I think they might matter more than the rules.
  14. 4 points
    I think there are two elements to this question when it comes to Hero; How much can you simplify so someone can play a character they have in front of them? (i.e. the Con Game) How much can you simplify character creation and world building? Showing someone how skills work, how modifiers effect things, and how combat works is very different (in any game system) from showing them how to create a character or campaign. For example, you could remove Combat Maneuvers from the system, and utilize a system of Combat Skill Levels only to simulate various shifts in how martial combat works in play. Most of the rest is flavor text. Even the free maneuvers and basic maneuvers, like Multi Attack could be drastically simplified to "take more than one attack action and you incur a -2 to every attack action per extra action taken" - this isn't even an uncommon aspect in gaming. But, if you want to simplify the creation process, that isn't as easy - but I don't think it's out of reach. Doing something like removing Endurance completely as both a stat and a consideration in character builds can greatly affect how someone approaches their build and the game. Someone could do something like remove the Speed Chart, but keep Speed - as a number of dice you roll in the Initiative Phase; Body on the Dice = Actions per Turn. Going round robin until people start to run out of Actions to use, keeps DEX basically the same. Would this simplify things for new gamers? Maybe, it's not entirely foreign idea and prevents the standard back-and-forth most systems create. Now, what any one of us might remove and still be what we consider a "Hero System Game" may vary quite a bit. But as I said before, as long as you keep the core tenant of separating Mechanics from Special Effects you can still capture the essence of what Hero is. Regardless of what other unique, and recognizable, elements the system has over others.
  15. 4 points
  16. 4 points
    Here is the chart of the 0 cost martial arts for your use if you choose. This allows people to try ANY martial arts maneuver, they're just going to be much weaker at it and not very effective. But it also lets you build martial artists around extra damage and levels rather than maneuvers: everyone gets these, and then you're extra good at them.
  17. 4 points

    Look at me, the proud father

    Man, the developer must be old.
  18. 4 points

    In other news...

    Libel has been against the law since 130 AD. No precedents scary or otherwise were set by this case. All that happened was that the courts enforced laws that have been part of American jurisprudence since the very founding of the republic. They did not enforce the law in any new or novel way. If anything at all is new here, it is the brazenness of disregard for truth by publishers that really should know better.
  19. 3 points
  20. 3 points
    I admit, I miss Mjolnir. Don't get me wrong, Stormbreaker is impressive, and the depiction of its forging was epic. But IMO Mjolnir is so much cooler. It's also iconic. Like Cap's shield, Green Lantern's ring, the Silver Surfer's board, or Wonder Woman's lasso, Thor and his hammer are a set, and have been for generations.
  21. 3 points

    Political Discussion Thread (With Rules)

    Yeah...as I said above, when Godwin himself weighs in, you can't really argue it anymore...
  22. 3 points
    RE: projected year-end numbers, that's a decent possibility (and a good point). However, my thought is that this higher number of apprehensions has less to do with the number of people crossing the border this year as opposed to prior years, than it does with the onus being put upon the USBP by Trump & company to lock up every possible "potential illegal immigrant" in sight. Perhaps the net is being cast a little too wide? As to difference in how detainees are being handled, I assumed my reference to Simon's post would refer to "catch & release" short-term detainment vs. "zero tolerance" long-term detainment. So yes, I would expect that a marked increase in volume - especially long-term detainment - would affect service quality. That's self-evident. What you might want to be asking is, Didn't anybody in the administration think that vastly increasing the detainment time and number of arrests, without increasing funding for said detainment, would affect service quality? Either they didn't think of that beforehand or, as I suspect, they really didn't care all that much if it did.
  23. 3 points
    My son is now 14. He is heartily sick of my repeated response to the question of who would win between two characters...."Whoever the writer thinks will make the best story". He has however started using it with his friends.... Doc
  24. 3 points
    Old Man

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

    Spoiled, not because language or nudity, but just in case.
  25. 3 points
  26. 3 points
    I am firmly of the opinion that if Bush and Blair were corrupt enough to go to war on the basis of lying about WMDs that they would have been corrupt enough to ensure that we found WMDs. I think that Dean's right in that no-one believed Iraq when they said they had none and, I believe it is correct that, Iraq was, through back-channels telling its local enemies that it remained in control of sufficient quantities of chemical weapons. If they had none, they should have been more open with weapons inspectors, though that would have made them weaker in the local political context. I am concerned with the opinion that all politicians lie and that Trump is no different in that. I am constantly amazed at how he will dispute any issue that does not suit his message, even those that most of us would readily accept as factual. My bigger concern is that I am beginning to see other politicians take the same tactic. Look at those politicians in the UK defending Boris Johnson (police were called to his girlfriend's flat due to domestic disturbance) where, because police have not arrested anyone are talking like there was no need for anyone to be calling the police so it must all have been made up by politically motivated opponents. Dangerous stuff. Doc
  27. 3 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

    Found it!
  28. 3 points
  29. 3 points
    Christopher R Taylor

    How valuable is Dexterity?

    The first thing to remember is that for Hero, combat is a priority when it comes to pricing. That's why the ability to read and speak a language with all of its idioms and accents perfectly is worth only 5 points, but you can only get one martial arts maneuver for that price. Dexterity is very combat heavy, very world-interaction heavy. It controls who goes first, it is the key for many combat abilities such as fast draw, and it controls most world-impacting rather than interpersonal skills. Role playing concepts like conversation, languages, and persuasion are all cheaper than combat stuff because of this basic principle. So Presence, while important, isn't as expensive as Dexterity, which is very powerful. Splitting off who goes first into a different stat probably fits the 6th edition philosophy better, but the last thing we need is yet another characteristic, particularly one that devalues the existing ones even further, in my opinion.
  30. 3 points
    Every time I play 6e I feel like I'm cheating on 4e. She was the worthiest of the HERO editions. Really felt like the right balance between rules exposition and playability.
  31. 3 points
    Wow,..... "Story Story Story.." "Genre Genre Genre" ">...the hell?" I think the whole reason for "Dark Champions" became a thing was two fold: 1.) the base rules started as a Silver Age pastiche, but Comic books themselves transitioned into the dark and gritty phase after the Comics Code faded in concert with the fading of the news stand market, and the rise of the Direct Sales Market. 2.) People feeling that superhero Genre Conventions weren't all that realistic ("To hell with tights. I'm wearing Kevlar Torso armor, sap gloves, and a decent helmet), and perhaps the war game aspects of Hero, especially since it was at the time, debuted at a War Game Convention, the biggest on the West Coast at the time. As such, I am not here for the story. Story is what happens after you finish the game. what I am here for is the problem. I have a tactical mind, and for me Each game presents for me a problem to solve, within the framework of the rules, with the resources we have been given. As a GM that's how I plan. I figure out what the opposition thinks of the Player characters, and what the relative strengths and weaknesses are between them, then figure out where, and when, and present that to the players , then i sit back and listen. Loads of fun. But this focus on genre conventions and story structure to me, is not fun. I love to roleplay, but I prefer that the characters have internally consistent reasons for them to behave the way they do, rather than external reasons focused on "collaborative storytelling". Just give me dice, Miniatures and a mat. I will be quite happy to write something up. [Game-ist- Simulationist]
  32. 3 points
    Hero's real core mechanic, the foundation on which all the other ideas are built is divorcing Mechanics and Special Effect. Which is why it's a toolkit to make a game, not a ready-play game. Even systems like Fate can't completely divorce these two. Fate does do an excellent job by being almost entirely narrative in nature, but it becomes extremely abstract when it does that. Hero leans more on the crunch. If you want to reduce Hero to the foundations it's asking two questions: What happens, How Does It Look. Remove Special Effects and most characters are Attack; Move; Defend; Skill Set. But Heroes granularity is the elegant (if mathematical) way it allows you to define those elements. Which you can get in any system, even abstract one's like Fate, where things like "how far do I move?" are answered as "Plot Distance" unless you have an Aspect or Stunt that specifically defines you moving "Extra Plot Distance"; And if you're group isn't very narrative in nature, well, Hero with the nuts & bolts & numbers is the best at defining the idea that What Happens & How It Looks are two radically different things. How many actual rules can you remove from Hero before you stop being Hero? A lot probably, as long as you don't remove so much the core concept of Mechanics & Special Effect are Two Different Things That Work Together.
  33. 3 points
    HERO takes longer to digest, but recently my Wednesday night table - that I had kind of written off in terms of really getting to understand the game has finally turned the corner and they are buying HERO Designer and trying to build their own power frameworks. Which has lead to a level 2 conversation - Why you need DM approval on warning/stop sign powers.
  34. 3 points

    Happy Father's Day!

    Since Sunday was Father's Day, and Monday was my birthday, we pretty much celebrated both at once (on Saturday, because that''s when both kids were available). Had a nice dinner at Red Lobster, ice cream afterward, and played a game of Discworld (a board / card game I picked up at GenCon) that I won. (I don't think they just let me win, but maybe they were being very subtle.) On Monday I got Into the Spiderverse as a gift from my youngest, which we watched Tuesday night. Lots of fun.
  35. 3 points
    Just saw Captain Marvel from Redbox. I liked it. Flerken was funny. Larson was fine. A bit of obvious on the nose stuff with the girl power and Trump references, but didn't detract from the show nearly as much as the internet whiners let on, IMO.
  36. 3 points

    In other news...

    To help simplify, the suit is not about a work of fiction, but a book making a concrete claim. This is a textbook libel case, as well as defamation. It isn't unusual in the least.
  37. 3 points
    Old Man

    Twisted Fairy Tales

    1. One of the freaks: Rumpelstiltskin, the Beast, Tom Thumb. 2. Kids. Resourceful peasants. Cursed/blessed people. 3. The best way I can think of is to make it a relative low point total campaign so that even non-combat normals can compete using skills, talents, a freakishly high characteristic, a magic item, or even a power. Examples of the latter might be prehensile hair or multiform. Tropes that distinguish fairy tales from heroic fantasy: - Curses. - Talking animals. - Noncombat protagonists. - An emphasis on wit and moral character rather than combat proficiency. - Weak magic (as wielded by protagonists). - Antagonists with strong magic and a specific weakness. - Magic items and magic terrain features. Magic deserves particular attention. Fairy tale magic can be powerful but is rarely spectacular or direct. I'd seriously consider banning direct attacks like RKAs and Blast. Fairy tale spellcasters are far more likely to use subtler effects like Transform, Aid, Mind Control, or Shapeshift. In direct combat you might see Flash, Entangle, or TK*. What you won't see is fireball and lightning bolt. Plot-driving curses and geases might not even need statting out. * There's a fairy tale specific version of TK called "animate", which turns inanimate objects into automatons. IIRC it was a +1/2 advantage in the 1st ed. FH Spell Book supplement, which also had guidance for statting out various objects based on shape, size, and articulation. Now that I think about it, though, Summon might be more appropriate...
  38. 3 points
    Rules-as-Written, you only apply the highest. I remember some sidebar somewhere saying another developer-endorsed option is to sum the AP, so two 50%s make a 75% etc. If this came up at my table, I'd be asking why you had two overlapping Damage Reduction powers in the first place and what you hoped to accomplish by having both powers.
  39. 3 points

    Building a Doctor (5th Ed Rev)

    1, I would say that EITHER PS: Physician or Sci: Medical Science would be necessary. You can of course pile on a ton more skills, but that's all that is truly "necessary." 2. Paramedics. Again, you can and probably should pile on a lot more, but Paramedics on top of the above is all you need to be a general practitioner. 3. Basically you have to ask, what in game terms does this stuff do? I would probably build something like this: MD Black Bag: (Total: 12 Active Cost, 4 Real Cost) +3 with all Medical (12 Active Points); OAF (Requires Multiple Foci or functions at reduced effectiveness; -3/4), Gestures (Requires both hands; -1/2), Extra Time (Full Phase, Only to Activate, -1/4), Concentration (1/2 DCV; -1/4) (Real Cost: 4) Lucius Alexander The palindromedary suggests a Diagnosis power built as "Detect medical condition."
  40. 3 points
    To be fair, some of those villains are only "little" in comparison to TA's resident Dark Lord. But the Thunese gods, in particular, represent as great a threat to the Earth as Kal-Turak himself, if not even greater. Then again, there are potential foes for PCs with a much narrower focus or scope of operations. One outstanding example from Nobles, Knights, And Necromancers is the Red Talon Guild, a network of slavers who kidnap people from parts of Arduna where slavery is illegal, and transport them for sale to places where it is legal. This group is never going to be conquerors, but their operations span thousands of miles, involving a network of gangs of thieves and smugglers, tribes of barbarians and bands of mercenaries, and manors or castles along their trade routes where they can stash their victims. PCs who aren't ready or interested to save the world, may be highly motivated to track down and recover a kidnapped friend or family member.
  41. 2 points


    My friend called me and said he has dyscalculia. I said “What’s that?” He said “It’s like being dyslexic but mathematically.” I said “Sorry to hear that, mate. But if you think I can help, you’ve got the wrong number.”
  42. 2 points
    They explore and investigate new phenomena. They don't really battle villains or fight crime.
  43. 2 points
    I think it's eminently more likely that Trump was told up-front about the potential casualties... and he simply didn't pay attention until he asked himself. It was in one ear, out the other, with nothing in between to impede the progress. He strikes me as the kind of boss that doesn't listen when you suggest a way to fix a problem... and then turns around and suggests the exact same fix as if he came up with it himself.
  44. 2 points
    I would say, run a Danger International scenario, or some other modern game's scenario converted to Hero, using the edition of your choice. Pare everything down to Danger International levels of detail and Stuff. Agent-level characters, lower power level, primarily skills-based, heavily curated list of Talents, gear for no point cost, no Powers, a lot fewer moving parts. That's essentially what I did at GameStorm earlier this year, except I used actual Danger International. The two players who'd been in my aborted Champions game "got" it in a way they didn't seem to previously. Don't be afraid to use the heroic level gritty rules. Come with a number of pregenerated characters; modern scenarios leave lots of room for specialists who don't fit into fantasy style character class niches, which will help them as well.
  45. 2 points

    Good Omens is Coming to Amazon Prime!

    Does anyone want to sign the petition to cancel the show? There's a tiny problem....
  46. 2 points
  47. 2 points
    Scott Ruggels

    How valuable is Dexterity?

    A high Dex is analogous to having a High altitude in a dogfight. It confers more control and greater options, and therefore a higher chance of success in one's endeavors. Remember, Hero was and is primarily a combat game. as such that which gives you an advantage in combat is more expensive.
  48. 2 points
    This was my problem with Deadlands in the past. When I created my Luck Chits, I specifically made them "use 'em or lose 'em" for each adventure, because I wanted them played for dramatic story shifts, and not hoarded for EXP or whatever. And while I, the GM, do have access to some Luck Chits as well... one of the things my players like, is that they can see my pool. When I spend to give the villain a free recovery, or whatever, they see this as a victory... they are wearning down my resources as well. If I didn't save a big bennie for the villain at the end, then he doesn't have his "automatic getaway" or whatever. Yes, the GM can say anything they want, but a bennie system can help moderate (in the eyes of the players) when the GM clearly is swinging the narrative against them. In fact, it kind of frees up the GM to be open about "yep, I'm deciding this in favor of the bad guys... here I'm spending a chit to have things go their way" and the players seem much more ok with that.
  49. 2 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

    I generally hate this meme as unfunny, but this one genuinely made me laugh.
  50. 2 points
    The sole aspect I would challenge is a focus on pregen characters. I would instead take the route of a "campaign guide" (most likely an online one) for players which spells out the character guidelines in detail, and possibly provides some pregen's who would be suitable, but also serve as good examples. As an example, that X-Men themed campaign might require all PCs be mutants, set a mandatory complication or two, set out a few acceptable Hunteds (and/or mandate these be "mystery hunteds" which are detailed in the AP for assignment by the GM), maybe even some DNPCs. It might ban some powers outright and require others (e.g. a Cosmic Campaign might require enough Life Support and transportation abilities to be able to operate in space on a galactic scale). An FF theme might push that the characters must, in some way, be interconnected by friendships or family relationships, and here is how they obtain(ed) their powers. Those three APs could/should also be of differing power levels. That could mean our X-Men/Teen Titans start out as very novice heroes, maybe with less than Standard Supers points, our FF is standard supers, and perhaps we replace the third with an Avengers/Justice League "world's greatest Supers" vibe. Or maybe that third one is full-on cosmic as we already have two fairly traditional earth-based Supers setups. But I'd be more than happy to see a single, solid campaign AP! Fantasy tends to be a really good fit for "novice to demigod, then retire and start again". A different approach could be better for other genres, as well as for Hero System where character growth is less "zero to hero", with defined beginning and ending power levels, than the d20 system. The problem, as we have said before on these Boards, is not that Hero is not a great game system. It is that it is a game system, not a game. In today's time-pressed market, it really needs Games Powered by Hero System to sell it. There is no d20 system rulebook, only games that are powered by the d20 system.
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