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Showing content with the highest reputation since 06/26/2018 in all areas

  1. 22 points

    What happened to markdoc?

    Oh come now, I have always been the meekest and mildest of men Anyway, nice to see all the comments - Old Man contacted me and mentioned this thread, so I thought I would post. I wasn't actually banned back in the day, but Simon did give me a warning about making rude comments in a political thread during the last US presidential elections. I didn't think the comment was terribly out of line, to be honest, but these are Simon's boards, and I appreciated the effort he goes to in maintaining them, so rather than giving offence I said I'd bow out during the elections and come back when things were quieter. That was actually the plan buuut ... you know how these things go. By the time the election was over, I had a new job in a new country, and I was busy with all kinds of stuff (work, and being a tourist, mostly). Then there came another international move, and then we bought an old house that we are doing up, and I was active on other sites .... basically, I kept meaning to drop in, but never got around to it. I'm still gaming regularly and carrying on much as before: hope everything is cool with you guys. cheers, Mark
  2. 15 points
    Scott Ruggels

    Blast from the past part. 1

    So I have recently completed a move, to a place largr enough to not need storage. So I have bern unpacking many boxes of books. Along with finding all of my old gaming books, I found my character binder. Inside was the original Hero flyer announcing Champions, and also the character handed to me by either Bruce or Ray, for a game GMed by Steve Peterson an that convention back in 1981. I present it to you in the interests of the historical record.
  3. 12 points
    Heck, I had pretty much abandoned the system. It IS the system that I know the best. So when the players wanted to play Supers, it was the game I chose. We are running a beginning 6e Champions Game. Dex 18, SPD 5, DC10 (62 active), CV 7 as our averages. So Skill levels (yet) The PCs are the newest hosts for Beings that are Iconic for a character type. Developing I'm BACK!! LOL
  4. 11 points
    In case folks hadn't heard, here's the recent posting on our Facebook page: We’re working on an update to our original San Angelo: City of Heroes product line, bringing the Origins Award-nominated sourcebook and setting into the 21st century! No definitive release date yet but we are shooting for Summer 2020. We’ll post updates here so be sure to follow us to get the latest info! I'll be posting material and sneak peaks, as well as answering questions, in this thread. See you at Liberty Square! SACoH Facebook Page | Twitter: @SACoHNews | IG: @SACoHNews | Website: SACoH.com
  5. 11 points

    Avengers Endgame with spoilers

  6. 11 points
    I wish to ask for a bit of tolerance up front: While I generally try to put in as little set-up as possible (believing that if it was really noteworthy, it shouldn't need much help), but this time there will be some set-up. Forgive me, please. I had my youth group game today, though it didn't look like I would be doing much of anything ever again. I spent the bulk of Friday in the ER and was eventually stabilized and admitted for observation. Enough on that. I have a ceremony for calling the game to order. It started as a joke way back in the 70s, back when Bullwinkle would still pop-up in re-runs. It also started as a joke: the group (game was D&D) had been left in an intentional cliff-hanger as the majority of us were looking at finals, cram sessions, etc, and we figured at least four weeks before we got back to the game. Not only was it a cliffhanger, but the PCs were in far worse shape than I had anticipated them to be, in spite of copious fudging to keep them from being slaughtered. The day came that we re-convened. Before I developed my genuine old man voice, I was a fair mimic-- not great, but fair. However, I could _nail_ the narrator from Bullwinkle (and a few others). The chit-chat and catching up was slowing down, and I decided to call the game to order with a bit of humor, considering as how we were all in great spirits and about to dive into a dire situation. I broke out the Narrator voice and launched into a quote I remember from _childhood_, and don't know why: "When we left our story last time, things were in _terrible_ shape! Some of the nation's smartest geniuses were being turned into _complete_ idiots! It was all the result of a mean little man from a _mean_ little country--" [Boris voice]: Go on, say de name!" [Narrator]: Boris Badenuf. In desperation the government sent for Bullwinkle J. Moose I went on a bit further, while they were taking their seats, and trailed off while the came to order. Eventually, this went on to become a recurring gag, particularly when they were taking too long to settle themselves or if, when we left our story last time, things really _were_ in terrible shape. Over the next decade, it became first a tradition, then an inescapable ceremony. Adults appreciate ceremony and group culture, no matter how odd it is: "Hey, that's our thing! It's what we do!" Kids.... well, you know how those pre- and early teen years were: everything was awful; everything is uncool and corny (or whatever they call it now. Is "corny" still a thing?) About the third time I did it with the youth group, they began to groan and complain, and every week there's one or two "not this again!" and "why do you have to do this?!" nothing really malicious; they're just intent on letting their peers now that they are too cool to accept this crackpot ceremony. (and it doesn't matter that I can't do the voices anymore; they've never even heard of the characters. ) Flash forward forty years. I am in a hospital bed, awaiting transfer to an observation room, with a doctor telling me "Well, Mr. Oliver, you're not dead, but we have no idea why not. You've been stable for the last two hours, but we'd like to keep you under observation for the next 24 hours." Well, Doc; that won't work. My spine is busted up bad, and I have had about all of this bed it can handle. "Can you give us twelve hours?" [wife]: He will give you twelve hours. [me]: Apparently I'm going to, either way. skip ahead a few more hours. My wife has called my bi-weekly group to tell them there will be no Friday night game; she has called the Youth Ministries director to let the kids know there will be no Youth Game Sunday. (though we did have one, thanks to the miracle that left me alive). Some hours later, I am wheeled into an observation room. In the observation room are four of my youth group players, with a card. I'm awake enough to appreciate this by now, and I grin and make happy noises and tell them Mr. Duke is going to be fine in a few days. Well, _good_, says Colleen (Kinetica's player). Yeah, says Everette (Magnus's player) Yeah, Mr. Duke, I'm glad! says Eric (Red Cloak's player). Because when we left our story last time, things were in _terrible_ shape! Yeah, says Everette. Some of the nation's smartest geniuses --- then all four, like they were reciting a poem-- were being turned into _complete_ idiots! It was all the result of a mean little man--- and so on. I'm fifty nine years old, and despite what I've thought for several decades now, I'm not done crying. That's my quote of the week from my gaming group, and quite possibly the best one I've ever had, posted or otherwise. I apologize for the lengthy set-up. Duke
  7. 11 points
  8. 11 points
    In honor of the man's passing...
  9. 11 points
  10. 10 points

    Captain Marvel with spoilers

    Getting 'subversive man-bashing' from those scenes requires an ability to reach that Mr. Fantastic would be proud of IMO. Well, maybe unless that's what you were looking for all along, I suppose.
  11. 10 points
  12. 10 points
  13. 10 points
    This is a campaign idea I've been thinking about recently to use with my current gaming group someday. Second Chances is a boarding house set up to assist supervillains in their efforts at reintegrating back into society after they've served out their sentences in Stronghold, maybe for those who've gotten released early for good behavior or after serving on the Champions Universe's version of the Suicide Squad. It's a government-sponsored halfway house dealing in supervillains. It might even make for a decent convention game background. My thought was to use it as the basis for a PC team, putting together former supervillains into a ragtag group of anti-heroes that actually can do some good together. Think Guardians of the Galaxy, only made up of parolees. It could also work for a Dark Champions: The Animated Series sort of setting. One of the things that the government would do is provide new secret IDs for each parolee in their efforts at rehabilitation, so they would all have the Social Complications: Criminal Record and Secret ID, maybe at a reduced level for the Secret ID, since it is one known to the government. Watched by PRIMUS (or another group that deal with supercriminals) would also seem to make sense. What sort of supervillains might work from the current CU as parolees? Shrinker and Foxbat might make for a couple of interesting fellow parolees, but who else?
  14. 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
  15. 9 points
    Robert Muller, as transcribed by NPR. Emphasis by myself:
  16. 9 points
  17. 9 points
    Buy the magic as Requires A Skill Based Roll. Buy the corresponding skill. Buy two levels in the skill, Usable Only During Daylight. This achieves the two point difficulty swing without any fancy business on the Requires A Roll modifier, since it offloads the variability to the skill itself.
  18. 9 points

    In other news...

    Flat Earthers Spend $20,000 Trying To Prove Earth Is Flat, Accidentally Prove It's Round
  19. 9 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

  20. 9 points
    Wow'zers.... I had never thought I'd see someone else on these forums have this epiphany. ? That hits dead center on why Hero has become a dead game. My definition of a dead game is one that is not generally available for purchase via standard distribution. And Hero is a game that can only be purchased in electronic form if you know it exists. But back to your post. I'll complete your main theme: "In order to get customers, you have to get them playing the game." "To get them playing the game you have to have people running games." "To get people running the game you have to provide adventures to start them off." The problem with Champions Complete (CC) and Fantasy Hero Complete (FHC) is they are complete kits to build games. They are not a Complete Games. Now I know the "let Hero die away quietly" crowd will immediately chime in with "Real gamers don't use pregenerated adventuress and campaigns!" and then point to the existing products like The Turakian Age as proof. But they refuse to realize that TA's layout was enough to send potential players running. A new player (or GM) has to wade through 175 pages of in depth world descriptions before they hit the section of building a PC. To build a Wizard TA tells you that it has a 100 extra spells in TA, but you need the Grimoire (another product). FHC on the other hand just tells them a Mage gets 50 CP's of magic and spells, but doesn't contain any or give any usable advice on which ones to start with. D&D 5th may have the entire spell list in the PHB, but a new player only has to read and understand 1 or 2 out of a list of 10 or so in the beginning. What FHC should have had was detailed templates for Human, Elf, Dwarf and Halfling Warriors, Wizards, Rogues and Priests. These would be rounded out with prebuilt and short spell lists, abilities/powers, weapons and gear appropriate to beginning adventures in a very very reduced slice of TA. A village on the frontier where the PC's stop goblin raiders. My point is that CC or FHC is not ready to play. And unless there is a ready to play version, people will not play it. Sure, like everyone in this forum, I refer my own homebrew campaigns and worlds. But CC and FHC is exactly like all the other RPG's in that people need to play it and learn how it works in play before they can really begin creating their own stuff. I am pretty sure that everyone that has played 1st thru 4th editions has played Vipers Nest. We played it because it was a great way to try out Champs and see how things actually worked. In hindsight I believe it would have been even better if they had included 5 or 6 pregenerated Heroes. Not The Champions, but a few initial build PC's. But that is just my opinion. Take CC and FHC as written, reformat into a modern book. The text can be reformatted to fit a modern layout with art. But the actual rules do not, that is DO NOT need yet another rewrite. But they do need a third section at the end. Six pregenerated Heroes and a short three connected scenarios adventure. A mini-campaign with all the villains, monsters etc. ready to go. They do not need to be elaborate and world shaking. They can be just tough enough for initial builds. They need to provide opportunities for combat and non-combat skill use. This would allow new to Hero players to actually experience the game in play and give them something to look at and say "I get it, that is what they meant". With Hero, once the system clicks you will never look back. But it will never really have an opportunity to click if no one ever plays it.
  21. 9 points
    False. It suffers from a distinct lack of George Perez cover art.
  22. 9 points
  23. 9 points

    RIP: Stan Lee

  24. 9 points
    Killer Shrike

    Superhero vs Fantasy

    D&D as the first rpg set the trend, and had first mover advantage plus hit on the zeitgeist of its times. In the 60's, early 70's Tolkein's books entered the public domain in the US on accident due to a bizarre clause in the US copyright laws regarding import of books from other countries. Ace published a bunch of royalty free copies at a reduced cost compared to other books of the time. The themes of the books in regards to "back to nature" / anti-technology and an overall anti-war sentiment meshed well with the counterculture movement of the day (what we think of as hippies these days), and the idea that the "pipeweed" hobbits made and smoked was marijuana found favor with the same group as well (Tolkein himself stated it was just a kind of tobacco). Consequently, Tolkein-isms and similar derivatives became a cultural phenomenon of the era, and you end up with wizards painted on the sides of panel vans and rock ballads such as The Battle of Evermore and so on. It resonated with a lot of people who did not conform to the mainstream norms of their day, particularly creatives. In the downstream ripple of that, we get D&D and other vaguely Tolkein-esque content including some early video games made mostly at colleges by young techies who were hip to the youth culture of their day. Superheroes on the other hand had their original heyday in the 1940's and then again later in the 80's. For a very long time, they were seen as being strictly for kids. This began to change in the 80's and 90's, and of course the last decade has been insanely big for superheroes. Unfortunately, most people only know DC and Marvel characters from the movies and TV shows, and for whatever reason both Marvel and DC have never really been able to get their act together when it comes to RPG's and videogames. There's been a lot of good rpgs published. I myself enjoyed Marvel FASERIP from TSR in the 80's, Marvel SAGA (the card one, which was actually pretty fun if you gave it a chance), and Marvel Cortex+ (which was a GREAT game). But either they don't catch on, or they are not supported and die off, or the license lapses. I think that perhaps part of the problem with getting more people hooked on superhero rpgs is that fantasy stories are mostly literary; you read them and imagine them in your minds eye. They attract readers who are good at imagining things in their minds eye. This is the very same skill one needs to get into and enjoy roleplaying games. Superhero stories are mostly comic books / graphic novels or now movies and tv shows; you experience these stories mostly by looking at pictures or cinematic representations. You don't have to imagine anything in your mind's eye...what is happening has been drawn or acted out for you to look at. It is a visual medium, and it draws people who appreciate a visual medium and want to be SHOWN what it is vs imagine it for themselves. There is some overlap; some people enjoy both traditional textbased books and graphical books, but a lot of comic book fans are not big readers in the general sense.
  25. 9 points
    I refuse to believe that could be real. Tony Stark would have arranged something far grander than a simple headstone. I'm thinking the Tony Stark Memorial Cemetery, with a giant mausoleum in the center. Around the periphery of the mausoleum are several dozen statues of various Iron Man armors, each with eternal flames burning. Daily fireworks shows. Maybe even dancing girls.
  26. 9 points
    Tom Hiddleston: The choices we make have a lasting impact. Not just on ourselves, but on those around us. On our communities. Even on the world. When considering the question before us, we must take into account-- Clerk, interrupting: Sir, I just need to know whether you want paper or plastic.
  27. 9 points
    Personally, I object to Brett Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court, not (just) because he appears to have problems controlling his urges (lust, drinking, anger) and not (just) because his decisions show support for an agenda farther to the Right that I'm really comfortable with. I object to Justice Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court because when given a chance to state unequivocally that all Americans are equal under the law, up to and including the President, he couldn't do it. This, and this alone, tells me that he has no place on the highest court in the land. Your mileage may vary, of course.
  28. 9 points
  29. 8 points

    Origins 2019

    Hello, I managed to get my games scheduled at Origins this year. I am not a part of a group, but I will be running a few HERO games at Origins this year. Here is my schedule: A Life Less Ordinary (HERO System, Anime HERO): Some students in Japan acquire great powers and must stop a force of terrifying and insidious evil from consuming their college campus. RPG. 4-6 Players. Wednesday, June 12th from 2 pm - 6 pm. Revelations 1001 (HERO System, Fantasy HERO): The End Times of Book of Revelation are literally coming true in 1001 A.D. Six heroes have been gathered by the forces of light, some of them far more reluctantly than others, to gather sacred artifacts that will help defeat the Anti-Christ and his forces. They must brave terrible monsters and great evil to acquire them, and then shall face the Anti-Christ and his army on the plains of Megiddo. This game is intended to be an entertaining and thought-provoking game, and every effort has been made to treat faith with the utmost respect, and no offense is intended towards anyone's individual beliefs. RPG. 4-6 Players. Wednesday, June 12th from 7 pm - 11 pm. Legacies (HERO System, Champions): You are descended from the superheroes that won World War II. Can you uncover the mystery behind their disappearance? Could it be the work of their old nemeses? RPG. 4-6 Players. Thursday, June 13th from 7 pm - 11 pm. The Temple of the Three Valleys (HERO System, Martial Arts HERO): Set in late-16th century China, a group of heroes from all over the world have come to a village to find a long-lost temple that contains the secrets of martial arts and great riches. They must also use their martial arts skill and superhuman wu shu abilities to defeat a ferocious tyrant and his minions. RPG. 4-6 Players. Friday, June 14th from 10 am - 2 pm. Kazei 5: Juke Joint Jezebel (HERO System, Kazei 5): Set in the anime cyberpunk world created by Susano/Michael Surbrook, a group of mercenaries find themselves in over their heads when they investigate a break-in at a corporate facility. RPG. 4-6 Players. Saturday, June 15th from 10 am - 2 pm.
  30. 8 points
  31. 8 points
  32. 8 points
    It is somewhat understandable to immediately equate Nazis only with the atrocities that occurred from 1939-45, but that happened because they were allowed to get to that horrible endgame. Not enough people spoke up in the 20s when they were formed, nor in the 30s when they came to power. The Nazi party was probably dismissed as extremists. They had a measure of popularity because of a strong economy, a narrative that sparked a beaten down populace with calls similar to 'Make Germany Great Again', and a leader that knew just what to say to the lowest common denominator.
  33. 8 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

  34. 8 points

    In other news...

    Report Reveals Jesus Christ May Have Benefited From Father’s Influential Position To Gain High-Powered Role As Lord And Savior "Examining evidence from the Gospels, as well as recently unearthed ancient Christian and Gnostic texts, researchers at Yale Divinity School concluded that Christ’s close familial relationship to the Creator of Heaven and Earth likely contributed to His meteoric rise from obscure carpenter to high-level divinity"
  35. 8 points
    Killer Shrike

    But I did not swear!

    I'm a former Marine. If I stopped swearing when I spoke I'd be reduced to hand gestures and writing things on a chalk board.
  36. 8 points

    Source and rule book serious weakness

    Another thing to keep in mind -- if your game is all about combat, that's what players will spend their points on. If you include other things in the game, players will feel like they're getting the most bang for their buck by diversifying. For instance, let's take Aragorn from LOTR (movies, since I haven't read the books in about 30 years). He starts off and he's a combat character, and he has a handful of wilderness survival skills as well. Then when he's off doing some ranger stuff, the hobbits' players all blow their Int rolls. They start a fire and are cooking food, until Frodo's player comes back from the bathroom. When he finds out what they're doing, he says that he wouldn't let them do that, but the GM is all "no, you were asleep, you wake up and they're cooking bacon". Then the Nazgul attack. Aragorn comes in to save the day, driving off the ring wraiths, but Frodo gets dropped to negative Body in the process. The GM starts rethinking how many combat levels he let Aragorn buy. The Nazgul were supposed to be really tough opponents, and he just solo'd them. Maybe Aragorn needs some other stuff to spend points on. So Aragorn carries Frodo and they try to head for Rivendell, with Frodo's player bitching and moaning the whole time that it's not fair that he got stabbed when it was these other guys' fault. Aragorn asks if he happens to know any sort of ranger healing techniques, maybe with his wilderness skills he knows of a healing plant or something. The GM asks if he has either Paramedics or KS: Herbalism. Aragorn says no. The GM lets him make a roll anyway, but tells him that his next XP points have to go into that skill. Aragon is like "I got this", then he rolls a 17 and totally fails to help Frodo. Frodo's player starts complaining again, the GM sighs, and then he introduces Aragorn's elf girlfriend. "After you buy Paramedic, you'll need to buy Contact: Elf Girlfriend" the GM says. She's cool and has neat powers, so Aragon says okay. As the story progresses, the GM drops the hint that maybe he's got some royal lineage or something. Wouldn't it be cool to be a king? That's something to spend points on later. Oh and here's a magic sword that belongs to the king. It's broken right now, so you will have to have it reforged before you can use it. Be sure to save your points for that. Aragorn thinks that sounds cool, and he's on board with it. The GM decides that to be king of Gondor, Aragorn is going to have to buy a lot of stuff. He can't just spend 10 points for Perk: Head of State. He will have to buy that, but he'll need other stuff too. Along the way, he's going to have to buy Contact: Elrond. He's also going to have to buy up his Tracking roll when he goes and chases after those orcs who kidnap the hobbits. He will encounter Eomer and Theoden, and he'll have to buy KS: Rohan (with the excuse "yeah, I've always known this stuff"), as well as Persuasion and High Society. Of course his Presence will have to go up as well. Then he'll have to lead an army at Helm's Deep, and so he has to buy Tactics. The whole time, Aragorn keeps talking about how he wants to increase his damage, and get some more combat skill levels. He didn't like having to run from that Balrog, and when he almost lost to that one badass orc that killed Boromir he got pissed off. But the GM always puts him in a position where there are new skills and abilities that he needs as the game goes on. Aragorn complains because the hobbits have started spending points on combat abilities, and he's not super head and shoulders above them anymore. "Hey, you're working on being a king, remember?" the GM says. Aragorn reluctantly accepts that he needs to spend points on other things. But then Legolas will do something awesome and Aragorn gets mad again. The GM finally says that Aragorn gets to command a ghost army for a while, and then he's happy. Ultimately, he's spending 10 points on Head of State, then he's got to spend 15 on Wealth (all the riches of Gondor), several D6 of Reputation, he's got to buy up his Ego to use the Palantir, he has to pick up a bunch of skills, and then he's got the magic sword (and the GM doesn't really mention that it only has Affects Desolid and a couple D6 of Rep, without doing much more damage than a normal sword). Being king ends up costing Aragorn at least 70-80 points, once all is said and done, but combat-wise he's not really any more effective than he was when he started.
  37. 8 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

  38. 8 points
    Those praising this in the name of their religion are being incredibly short sighted. While I think Christianity is not going anywhere soon, there are more 'nones' in American demographics when it comes to religion every year: People who are atheists, agnostics, 'spiritual but not religious', or of a less populated religion but don't wish to come out just yet. Add to that those who are openly of a non Christian faith, and it's entirely possible that in a 100 years, while Christianity won't be gone, it will be a 'large minority' or LESS. Now that we've set the precedent of religions being somewhat interchangeable, well, the shoe might end up on the other foot. If we still have the death penalty in a hundred years, some Christian fellow being put to death might have to accept the state handing him over to whatever Hare Krishna ,Wiccan Priestess, or yes, Imam is handy and convenient for said State. The Right to Freedom of Religion just took a hard blow here, and sadly, some very short sighted morons are cheering it on. Speaking as a person who tries to honor Christ (Terrible at it but hey), I just want to wipe the dirt from my sandals and walk away from this at this point, but this is my country and I'm stuck with them. ? So for me, I offer up Thoughts, Prayers... oh, and VOTING as much as I can as ineffective as that feels
  39. 8 points

    Classic/80s Champions Villains

    Heh. I once had a supervillainess make friends with Grond, gave him a My Little Pony as a gift -- and then later stole it and convinced him that one of the PC heroes took it. You can imagine the hero's confusion when Grond came charging at him, shouting, "GROND WANT PINKIE PIE!!!"
  40. 8 points
  41. 8 points
    I jokingly answered earlier in the thread, but now I'll answer for real. This is going to come across as kind of rude. Sorry. No offense meant to anybody here. 6th edition is inferior because it is designed by a committee, based upon a false promise, and a fundamental misunderstanding of the underlying system. It's the product of endless tinkering without an achievable goal or a clear direction. I'll try to flesh out what I mean by all that, but some of it is conceptual and may be rather hard to explain. Everything up to 4th edition was led by the original designers, and there's a logic to how everything was costed. Power X is about twice as good as Power Y, so it should cost twice as much. There's a basic concept of balance built into it from the very beginning. All the powers and characteristics are roughly scaled with one another. It's not perfectly executed, but it's pretty close. Moreover, there was a philosophy to how it was balanced. They valued certain abilities more than others, and so those were costed higher. These ideas were internally consistent with each other. Combat abilities are more valuable than noncombat abilities. Flexible powers are more valuable than those that are more limited. Therefore these things cost more points. If you built characters as they intended, and played the game as they intended, it had a wonderful balance. 4th edition Champions was almost perfect. And again, it was true to its philosophy. Now with a system as complex as Champions, you'll never get a perfect balance. There are just too many moving bits and pieces, and a powergamer will find the most efficient builds possible, while a person who has never played before will waste points on things that may never come up. That is unavoidable. But later editions didn't understand that. 5th edition, 5th edition revised, 6th edition, Champions Complete, all of them have tried to tweak the system to achieve some perfect balance that just isn't possible. And the biggest problem is, these changes didn't follow the original pricing structure of the system. The changes were made by people with a different philosophy of how the system should work. And those changes don't quite mesh with the underlying system. As an example, let's go to 5th edition, written by Steve Long (somewhat prophetically named when you see the size of his manuscripts). He had his own ideas about how the Hero System should work, and he modified it. Adders became much more common. The pricing structure for some powers was changed, but not for others. And while some of these changes were arguably good, others were not so great. It was clear that he was seeing the system in a different way from the original authors, but it was a modification of their system and not one built from the ground up with his own ideas. Long's philosophy appeared to be based around trying to make everything fit around a certain core set of game mechanics. Instant Change was removed as a Talent and modified to be a "My clothes only" Transform. Shapeshift was turned into a sense-affecting power. But one of the most glaring examples here is Damage Shield. In 4th edition, Damage Shield was a +1/2 advantage you applied to a power. If anybody touched you, or if you touched anybody, they were hit with that power. When 5th edition hit, it suddenly required you to purchase the advantage Continuous (+1). But, you didn't actually get the benefit that Continuous granted, which is that somebody hit with a Continuous power will be affected by it every single phase. No, you had to pay a +1 advantage tax because now you've got to change your Energy Blast to a Constant power before you can apply Damage Shield. Why is this a problem? Because it's a different game philosophy stacked on top of the previous one. While both follow the idea of "you get what you pay for", 4th edition was more focused on comparative effectiveness, whereas 5th added costs with the idea of making powers conform to a certain format. A 10D6 Energy Blast with Damage Shield in 4th edition was 75 points. That's the same as a 15D6 Energy Blast. Quite expensive, but you got the benefit that you could hurt your enemy when it wasn't your phase, without an attack roll, depending on what they did. Still might be too expensive though. In 5th edition, you had to buy it Continuous first. So now that power became 125 points, the same as a Twenty-five D6 Energy Blast. No power-gamer in the world would choose a 10D6 Damage Shield over a 25D6 EB. The two aren't remotely comparable. There are other problems as well. The cost of Major Transform had previously been based upon the cost of RKA, the logic being if you can kill them, you might as well be able to turn them into a frog. 5th ed wisely dropped having Cumulative be a +1/2 advantage (RKA is cumulative by default), but it added requirements that you had to pay more to affect different types of targets. Instead of "turn target into frog" the standard Transform became "turn human into frog". To affect any target, you had to buy another advantage. In this way, the cost structure of 5th edition became less consistent, more concerned with form than function. Abuse wasn't eliminated at all, the nature of the abuse just changed. I wasn't active on the boards during the time that they were soliciting suggestions for 6th edition. I think I had an account here but I had wandered off. But as I understand it there was a lot of discussion about what changes people wanted to see made. And while I like most of you guys just fine, good lord do I disagree with a lot of you over how the game system should work. I see questions on the Hero System Discussion page, and many of the suggestions are overly complex and extremely point inefficient. But some people feel like they've got to dot those "i"s and cross those "t"s. Again I wasn't involved in any of the discussions, but when I flip through the 6th edition book, I'm reminded of the adage "too many cooks spoil the broth". 6th compounds some of the mistakes of 5th edition and doesn't look back.
  42. 8 points
    To be fair, pretty much all the successful and popular games do the same. D&D5th, Modiphius has 5 or 6 RPG's, Savage World and Chaosium is on the way back though without the miniatures. And there are many others. But you actually left out one of the key factors on why their games are exploding in popularity. The ability for anyone to create an adventure or supplement without need of a specific contract. All the currently successful games have some version of an OGL or a "here are the guidelines and you can sell your creation as long as you meet them". D&D 5th has their "DM Guild" for example. They also realize that the concept of "GM's only like to run their own settings adventures and will not buy pre-built settings and adventures" is utterly false. The true statement is "GM's really prefer to run their own settings adventures but usually wind up using pre-built settings and adventures, except a lucky few." D&D 5th and Pathfinder adventure books are constantly selling. And not just those from WotC or Paizo, but the 3rd party adventures are also in demand. The D&D 5th adventure books sell out every week, and I don't mean just the new one, but my FLGS finds it hard to any of them in stock. I personally like home-brews far more than bought adventures, but due to little pesky things like real life I have run and played far more bought material in the last ten years than anything created by me or a friend. While I fully acknowledge I am not privy to company details, in a general sense this is what I would do. 1) Release a Quickstart. Basic rules, pregenerated PC's and a small adventure. Notice there is no mention of character generation. This is the biggest mental block/blindspot of Hero and Hero fandom. Character creation rules are not playing the game. Yes they are a great part of the Hero system. But they are NOT playing the game. A Champions Quickstart, a Fantasy Quickstart and so on. Something that will showcase the game for people that have never played and walk a "I have never GM'd before" GM through the scenario for the "I have never played an RPG before" players. The D&D 5th and the PF both have starter boxes that show polished versions. 2) Release a setting book around a city. Hero already has them, but they need to be paired down from the "super information overload" versions that Hero became famous for. The existing books are WAY over detailed. Also, you must have a map. An actual usable city map that you can see and read the names of the streets. For modern settings like Champions the Hudson City color map is perfect and always gets compliments. I would love to use Vibora Bay, but never had time to build the map that does not exist. For Fantasy just look at WotC/Paizo and their cities for inspiration. 3) Start with one well written multi-scenario adventure per supported line a year (similar to Adventure Paths, Plot Points, etc.) with a minimum of 6 parts. More and bigger as time goes on. 4) Unleash the fandom with a version of OGL or similar that allows them to create and sell PDF adventures. Looking at WotC D&D 5th OGL and DM Guild differences are a perfect set up. Reserve larger and hard-copy products for traditional licenses. But an RPG gets popular when people PLAY it and have fun. Get the game out there. 5) Reformat the product to appear like it was published after the 1800's. The rules are good. There is no need for yet another tweak. But there is absolutely nothing that will make it leap off the shelf. The cover was OK, but the old school black and white textbook look prompts 99% of current gamers to put it back on the shelf. In the end the target audience is not the people on this forum, it is the gamer that is not a Hero player. The Herophile that is on the "I only play my original material and all the current fantasy settings are lame" program is not going to do anything for Hero, once they buy the one rulebook and they are done. It is time to attract the mainstream tabletop gamer that routinely plays pre-generated adventures because they have pesky things like jobs or families and such with the associated lack of spare time. Simple adventures such as a series of robberies by a small group of super-thieves. Simple, teaches the system and can be literally dropped into any kind of campaign or game. Ensure the villains are also "generic" enough to fit into any game. Leave the "cool" and "unique" weirdness to the GM's out there that are inspired. A simple fantasy adventure where the PC track down goblins that have been raiding local villages. In the end the target audience is not the majority of the people on this forum. That majority have already bought the rulebook and have pontificated for years about how they will never buy anything again. After all they do not buy pre-built "insert product of choice" because real GM's don't buy pre-built products. So once they have the rulebook, what is left? So they are a wash. Time to get the players and GM's that are constantly buying those same evil pre-built adventures week in and week out. It is time to realize that it is 2019 and that the conclusions reached in the late 90's early 2000's are 20 years out of date. For proof? WotC, Paizo, Pelgrane, Chaosium, Modiphius, Troll Lord and Evil Hat just to scratch the surface. Settings and Adventures. Settings and Adventures.
  43. 8 points
  44. 8 points
    GHWB knew how to make a campaign promise to get elected, and then how to break it in order to govern responsibly. "Read my lips: No new taxes!" But when it became fiscally desirable... he signed a bill into law that raised taxes. I am sure he paid for it politically, but I prefer it to the sort of Republican who thinks deficits are just dandy once they are the ones running them up. He also did good as an ex-president. High point may have been his fundraising with Bill Clinton after the Dec. 26, 2005 earthquake and tsunami. As one pundit put it, in much of the world leaders cling to power no matter what. But here the world saw a leader who had the power to, no kidding, destroy the world if he didn't get his way, who gave up that power without a word of protest. And standing next to the man who beat him to take that world-ending power. Who then left office as gracefully, after seeing his anointed successor lose an election to the son of the man he defeated. Both of them saying, "Help these people, because it's the right thing to do." That, the pundit concluded, is moral authority with teeth. Dean Shomshak
  45. 8 points
    Christopher R Taylor

    RIP Roy Clark

    Country music legend, picker, and TV host Roy Clark has died at age 85. Now, some of you probably only know him as that corny guy that co hosted Hee Haw (more on that in a moment) but Roy Clark was one of the greatest guitarists of all time. He had faster hands than anyone on earth and could flat out play. Here's an episode of The Odd Couple (cut to just the musical bits and setup) to help you catch up to speed. Watch it all the way to end, for the most amazing display of musical talent ever. Now, about Hee Haw. Roy Clark wasn't the only legend there. His co-host Buck Owens was also one of the greatest singer/songwriters ever to grace the country stage. It was the equivalent of a show hosted by, I dunno, John Lennon and Jimi Hendrix. Liszt and Mozart. Except it wasn't about them at all, they were just there to have fun and entertain people rather than show off (although once in a while they did). If you didn't know he could play... you're in for a treat.
  46. 8 points
    I vote for Arthur Curry to travel back in time. They can call it "Splashpoint".
  47. 8 points

    A Little Good News

    Farmers Stand In Silence At Auction So A Young Man Can Buy Back His Family Farmhouse
  48. 8 points
    AIUI he recorded way more than that. Meanwhile,
  49. 8 points


    LIGHT, I need some fricken LIGHT so I can see people Robin in the shadows, okay. Trained by the bat got it Raven? she was Goth before Goth was cool.. (was Goth ever cool?) But son of a gun, why can't we get a good look at Starfire, Beast Boy and others... could one of you step into the sun or even a cloudy day for five flipping seconds *Rant* Also, someone needs to edit the film so what when Robin says "F**k Batman" Captain America's shield flies from off screen to hit him in the back of the head
  50. 7 points

    Funny Pics II: The Revenge

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