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  1. Thanks
    DreadDomain got a reaction from ChaosDrgn in The HERO System Book of Templates OR Champions Heroes: Volume 1   
    Hey guys,
    I have upload a few sheets in the download section under DC and Marvel Sample Heroes. Let me know if it doesn't work well (the download worked well for me).
    A selection of DC and Marvel heroes created in Hero Designer and laid on a simple RTF character sheet with a lot of the technical text edited out to make it simpler to read but also to have a character sheet of a single page (except for Batman. Because he's Batman). The sheet uses Calibri Light font. Section titles are size 10, capitalized. Standard characteristic names are size 9, bold. The rest is size 9 with flavor names in bold-italic. I have never printed it so it might look terrible on paper but it looks nice on the screen. Most characters were built using a combination of the Super HERO gallery, my own ideas but also ideas mined from these forums. The exception is Colossus which comes 99% from The HERO System Book of Templates by Christopher Hackler (which you can buy from this site). The file contains:
    Justice League 
    Aquaman (700pts) Batman (800pts) Flash (700pts) Green Lantern (700pts) Superman (800pts) Wonder Woman (700pts) Titans
    Beast Boy (400pts) Nightwing (400pts) Raven (400pts) Starfire (400 pts) Marvel
    Colossus (400pts) Daredevil (400pts) Spider-Man (400pts)
  2. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from tkdguy in The Expanse in Hero: How would you do it?   
    Have yet to read The Expanse RPG and how AGE is applied to it but aside from it, my choice would be GURPS. With Space, the Spaceships series, Ultra-Tech and Bio-Tech, GURPS has fantastic support for sci-fi game. Heck, to establish the technological baseline, you could start from Interstellar Wars, Vorkosigan or Transhuman Space and exclude FTL and/or transhumanism and/or aliens and you are probably 80-90% there, complete with write-ups for ships, space combat, travel time within the solar system, character templates and, in the case of Vor and TH, the GURPS rules.
  3. Like
    DreadDomain reacted to Sketchpad in Build a Shared Champions Campaign World Wiki?   
    Well, the idea would be for someone to make DD's format as an export format. I'm sure there's someone on the boards who could create such a thing. Background and other non-stat info is a pretty easy add on wiki pages, right? Having the stats formatted would need a bit more finesse, right?
    Dread, no problem. I really like the format and think that Hero could use something like it. Heck, I made a variant of it in InDesign.
  4. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Panpiper in Build a Shared Champions Campaign World Wiki?   
    Thanks for the nod!
    I would love to set my sheet as an export format but alas, I do not have the skills to do so.
    Which I would include if I knew how to create export formats Fortunately, you have other, better options!
  5. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from drunkonduty in Fantasy Hero Books   
    To be fair FHC is not the equivalent of the Starter Kit (even if they are in the same price bracket) but of the Players Handbook (which is more than twice the price but with a much better production value). The PH has more monsters than FHC (30ish vs 12ish) and way more spells (over a 100 vs 14ish).
    I am not in the business of selling or defending D&D but reading both books makes it painfully clear it's a lot easier to jump in D&D.
  6. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from LordLeoToledo in Third Edition Renaissance   
    You are correct. I am not saying the 6E way is wrong. I just prefer the aesthetic of the previous build.
    I prefer:
    Transfer: Transfer END 4d6 (60 Active Points) Real Cost: 60 CP 
    Transfer: Drain END 4d6 (40 Active Points); Unified
    Power (-.) (total cost: 32 CP) plus Aid END 4d6 (standard effect:
    same roll as Drain dice), Trigger (when character uses Drain,
    activating Trigger takes no time, Trigger immediately automatically
    resets; +1) (48 Active Points); Only Aid Self (-1), Linked (-.),
    Unified Power (-.). Real Cost: 51 CP
    Instant Change: Switch one set of clothes for another. Real Cost: 3 CP
    Instant Change: Cosmetic Transform 1d6 (standard
    effect: switch one set of clothes for another), Trigger (changing
    clothing is a Zero Phase Action, Trigger automatically resets;
    +.) (5 Active Points); Limited Target (the character’s current
    clothing; -.). Real Cost: 3 CP
  7. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Brian Stanfield in Fantasy Hero Books   
    No worries mate. Still, you make a good point. PHB has a higher number of creatures in the book but they are mainly animals (and skeletons and zombies). FHC has a smaller selection but they are more interesting, more fantastical. There are also 6 examples characters that can be used as antagonists. I supposed they could also be used as pregens as well but they are not really balanced against one another. Because "pick a pregen" makes jumping into the game much quicker.
    I went back through character creation of FHC again and tried to have the mindset of someone who buys a game and wants to play a fantasy character (as opposed to "I've been playing HERO for 30 years) and man, it's bad. Character creation starts at page 17, racial, cultural and profession templates are an afterthought at page 202. During character creation you plough through the powers system (p.51) with little guidance on how to use it within the context of what it means in fantasy but then you have typical advantages and limitations packages for various types of magic at page 212 and then sample spells at page 241. Everytime I look at this book, I like it a bit less (which sadden me really).
    I cannot access Fantasy HERO 1E at the moment but if my recollection serves, it was a better book for fantasy (and I am a 6E supporter).
  8. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Brian Stanfield in Fantasy Hero Books   
    At this stage, I believe we have an orthogonal conversion as we do not seem to be debating the same things. I even had to go back and reread what prompted this exchange  . You seem to have understood that my position was that the PHB was playable out of the box and FHC was not. This is not quite what I said (or at least meant) and my statement was that "...it makes FHC less play-ready than say, The Dark Eye, RuneQuest or Dungeons & Dragons even considering only their core/players books". My statement is not about which game is playable out of the box nor is it about which game is complete, it is about how quickly you can play a game after you bought the book. 
    Bill, Bob and Boris walk into a game store. They want to try a new fantasy roleplaying. Bill, will be the GM, Bob, wants to play a magician and Boris will be a burly fighter. The plan is to read and understand the rules and while Bob and Boris are creating their characters (they want to create their own), Bill will put a few critters and enemies together (he might create them of pick from a list if available) in a generic dungeon/prison/castle/maze/whatever and they will let their imagination flow. There are only 4 books in the game store and they are all games they have never heard of; PHB 5E, FHC, TDE and RQG. Which book will enable them to do it the quickest? Which option would be the slowest?
    As explained above, my position is that FHC would be the slowest to lift and could also be the most difficult for Bob to get into.
    That's all I am saying. No problem if you disagree (I believe you do) as you seem to imply that you cannot play a game with just the PHB. I'd like to understand what you believe is missing in the PHB tat would prevent Bill, Bob and Boris to whip a quick game?  
  9. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Brian Stanfield in Fantasy Hero Books   
    Am I? Maybe I am since I am comparing the "Complete" FH game with only a "Players Handbook".
    If you buy one of these two books to create characters right away, drop the party in a generic dungeons or locale populated by a few critters, you can do it more easily and rapidly with the PHB than with FHC. Chances are with FHC your evening will be spent creating characters, even worse if a player wants to create a spell caster.
    Assuming the same level of familiarity with the systems, I would also say that the jump is easier and quicker with only the core  book of RuneQuest or The Dark Eye (or Dungeon Fantasy but the basic game is a full boxset so it might be a bit unfair).
    In FHC, character creation is looser, there are more decisions to be made and it is less pick and play than the others (mind you RQG and TDE have quite a few steps in character creation but it's much more directed). Bottom line, it will take more time and effort.
    For the other games, you can easily select a priest/spell-user and choose from a selection of spells. Your options to do so in FHC is very limited with only a few spells given as a example, or unlimited with the ability to build anything. Bottom line, you will be limited or it will take more time and effort.
    It may come down with what we believe we need to buy a book, read it and jump straight in. It may also depends how much prep time you expect to put it before you play. Personally, I believe the PHB has everything you need to play from day one. 
    And there I believe the DMG is not needed to jump right in. Will you need it down the road? Maybe. Will you need it on day one? No. The same could be said for the Monster Manual. You want to play right away? You have 30 odd critters to play with. Sure, you will want more later.
    At first I thought you where conveniently moving the goalpost but actually I believe we are now confusing how quickly you can play after you bought a book, with how complete a game is.
    When I compare their playability out of the box, I talk about the former. It implies an ability to use the book quickly and enough material provided. FHC is not as quick to jump in (character creation) and not as complete (not enough spells).
    You mention "a lot of ways" but do not give any example of the many ways FHC is better suited than PHB when it comes to jumping into the game quickly. Would you mind giving a few?
  10. Thanks
    DreadDomain reacted to Beast in Where to start   
    I's start w/ Champions complete pdf at 20$
    then add the current Bundle of holding for 4th ed as this will give you tons of earlier source material that can be converted to 6th ed or go with 4th ed as the rules are there also
    4th edition is a bit simpler in building characters
    the bundle is currently at 30.52$ for everything
    hurry as it will be going up
  11. Like
    DreadDomain reacted to ScottishFox in Champions 4th Edition Hard Cover   
    In an effort to support the local gaming store this week I popped in a bought a dusty old 4th edition hard cover Champions book.
    Man, I have missed 4th edition.
    I've had fond, nostalgic feelings about 4th edition for decades, but now that I'm thumbing through this dusty old yellow-paged tome - I still love it!
    It's not like re-watching some movie from childhood and wondering how you ever liked such garbage.  4th edition stands the test of time.
    Anyone know if there's a dusty old HERO Designer that supports 4th edition characters?
  12. Like
    DreadDomain reacted to Lord Liaden in Champions Universe: Unique Character Origins   
    At various times I've mentioned here that, since the official Champions Universe is a hobby of mine, I found myself becoming a sort of unofficial "lore-master" to the Champions Online player community, answering their questions on the game's forums about elements of the setting. That has sometimes prompted me to compile information on particular topics for their easy reference. Occasionally I've transcribed some of that info here for our tabletop gaming community when I thought it might be of general interest, and that has been received positively.
    The Champions Universe, being inspired by the major mainstream comics companies, embraces the full range of classic super character origins you see in those comics: mutagenic accidents, genetic mutation, radical scientific inventions, mystic martial arts, aliens, sorcery, gods and supernatural creatures, cosmic entities, etc. However, there are a number of origin concepts described in Champions  books that IMHO are more original and distinctive to the setting, but don't require characters with backgrounds so unusual that players would require a lot of information or elaborate setup to use them. Even if you don't use the official CU, these origin concepts can be inserted into most original four-color super campaign worlds without much effort. So I thought outlining origins in that category might inspire some of my fellow Champions gamers.
    I'd be happy to flesh out more details on any of these origins if anyone asks; but every entry cites the published books in which folks can read more about them. I hope some of you find this useful.
    Alien Gene-Tampering:  Superhuman powers resulting from aliens mucking with Human DNA is a well-established comic-book trope. On Champions Earth the repeatedly-invasive Qularr are one likely candidate. The main reason the Qularr invaded Earth in the first place was so they could study the Human genome on a large scale, to understand why and how Humans manifest superpowers with greater frequency and average power than nearly any other species, including the Qularr. They hope to engineer that capacity in themselves. At least one experiment along those lines has yielded a super-powered hybrid, although by accident. It's highly likely other similar experiments are being conducted by Qularr currently on Earth, or perhaps on Humans kidnapped and brought back to Qularr space.
    What virtually no one knows is that one reason Humans do manifest powers more often, is because that genetic potential was placed in them by incredibly ancient and advanced aliens called the Progenitors. Two million years ago the Progenitors advanced the evolution of Humanity's ancestor species to the next stage of sapience. Half a million years ago they experimented on Homo erectus, creating the first of the ageless superhuman Empyrean race. Champions Universe suggests they might also be responsible for the creation of the Birdpeople of Thaar twelve thousand years ago.
    In any case, the Progenitors still exist, continuing their experiments and periodically monitoring the progress of past ones. It's not unreasonable to assume that they would do some "followup" work on Human DNA.
    You can read much more about the Qularr and Progenitors in Champions Beyond. The Birdpeople of Thaar are described in Champions Universe.

    Coruscations of Power:  In the worldwide accidental cataclysm which devastated the alien planet Ashraal centuries ago, and gave birth to the awesome cosmic villain Xarriel, discreet bursts of energy from the main explosion were cast across space and time, emerging in random locations in the space-time continuum. To date at least five of these "coruscations of power" have appeared on or near the Earth in recent years, and affected humans in their vicinity, creating the supervillains Photon, Stareye, Sunspot, and Vector, and the superhero Victory.
    The coruscations can manifest as bursts of light from space, but in the past have been mistaken for solar flares or lightning storms. Powers induced by them can, but not must, include various forms of energy projection, flight (usually very fast), mind-affecting abilities, enhanced physical strength, speed, and durability, and the ability to survive in hostile environments (even space).
    Xarriel is fully detailed in Champions Beyond, while the other villains mentioned are in the Champions Villains trilogy, and Victory in Champions Universe.

    DEMONic Experiments:  One of the classic superhero origins is the person unwillingly subjected to villainous scientific experiments who uses their newly-gained powers to escape. In the CU quite a few official supers came about that way, particularly due to actions by VIPER and ARGENT. But DEMON, the worldwide supernatural villain org, often conduct their own magical analogues to scientific research, which have spawned magical superhumans.
    One official villain, named Riptide, was a young runaway girl before a member of DEMON found her and turned her over to his Morbane. The Morbane attempted a magic experiment to bind the girl to a water elemental, hoping to create a strong but mentally pliable minion. But Riptide's crazed fear at what was done to her was now backed with elemental powers, enabling her to force her way to freedom. The supervillain now called Morningstar was the result of a tactic that DEMON often uses since it became estranged from the rulers of Hell: forcing a summoned demon to temporarily occupy the human body of a DEMON Brother, giving the Brother a measure of demonic power but with the human personality in control. For unknown reasons, Morningstar's possession proved permanent. He fought DEMON's enemies for some time, under enchantment to ensure his loyalty, until a battle with magical heroes severed the control spell and returned his free will. Morningstar left DEMON to become an independent supervillain. (Both characters are detailed in Champions Villains Vol. 3.)
    Another villain in the service of DEMON, Professor Samedi, was a minor DEMON member, and lackluster musician, before his Morbane had him try to play an enchanted fiddle the Morbane had acquired. Samedi found he could cast several potent spells with the fiddle's music, but it changed him physically, making him look almost skeletally gaunt; and changed his personality, to more actively, confidently malevolent. So there's precedent for a Morbane to have one of his disposable minions "test drive" a magic item. Perhaps a given item would change the wielder's personality in a more positive way. (Prof. Samedi is detailed in DEMON: Servants Of Darkness.)

    Department 17:  Since World War II, the United States government has researched ways to safely and reliably create superhumans, as well as to more effectively control them, with few successes. Their efforts have often resulted in severe, even fatal physical and mental side effects to their subjects, and produced as many supervillains as superheroes. During WW II the US military set up Project Rainbow for this purpose, at Fort McLaughlin (now McLaughlin Air Force Base) near the small town of Haynesville, Kansas. After the war the Project was declassified and officially shut down, and McLaughlin AFB appears nearly abandoned today.
    This was a ruse. Project Rainbow was never shut down. Still secretly based at McLaughlin, what is now titled Department 17 is the Defense Department's hub for research into superpower generation and superhuman control. Under its current director, General Clarence Smith, it conducts a wide variety of research involving drugs and chemicals, radiation treatments, genetic engineering, and other exotic methods. Much of the Department's current research focuses on refining the Cyberline procedure used for PRIMUS's Avenger program. The Department's scientists are also very interested in investigating any reports of new manifestations of superpowers.
    General Smith might go to great lengths to keep 17's existence and activities secret.  He's also used some "creative" accounting to keep his department funded. Department 17 is described in Champions Universe, as are PRIMUS and Cyberline.

    "Divine" Intervention: In the Champions Universe, all the gods and demons of myth and religion that humans still remember actually exist. Although very powerful in their home astral dimensions, a metaphysical barrier called the Ban prevents them from manifesting on Earth with their full power. But there are a few ways divine beings can create lesser-powered Earthly agents to champion their causes.
    One of these ways is to infuse some of their power, and sometimes personality, into a deserving human host, creating a superhuman reflecting the qualities of his or her patron deity. Quite a few official Champions heroes and villains have been empowered in this way. In keeping with comic-book origin conventions, their empowerment typically comes under unusual and dramatic circumstances, often at a key turning point in the life of the hero. For example, the first Johnny Hercules was given an amulet by an "apparition" of Zeus when the circus he worked for toured Greece, containing the "Hercules Force," the power of Hercules as a demigod which he abandoned when he became fully a god. The Nigerian hero Ogun gained power over metal after being beaten near to death by criminal thugs, when he received a vision of the Yoruba god of the forge of the same name.
    Ogun is thoroughly detailed in Champions Worldwide, while the current Johnny Hercules is featured in the PDF book The Hercules Force, available from the Hero Games website store. Much more on CU gods and the Ban can be found in The Mystic World.

    Empyrean Heritage:  For hundreds of thousands of years, the immortal superhuman offshoot of humanity called Empyreans have existed alongside their human cousins. While they maintain their own city of Arcadia in Antarctica, hidden from human discovery by advanced devices, the majority of Empyreans choose to live incognito among humanity. The general population is ignorant of their existence; only a few superheroes have been trusted with the secret, although the Lemurians know of Arcadia and have been enemies of the Empyreans for many millennia. A few Empyreans have acted as superheroes or villains in the modern era.
    Empyreans sometimes have children by humans, who are always either normal humans or full Empyreans. These children may grow up unaware of their true heritage; but the Empyreans' leaders scan the world for any new Empyrean offspring, and when they discover one induct him or her into their society. But individual Empyreans can follow whatever activities they like, provided they don't reveal their race's existence to mankind.
    All Empyreans are ageless, physically superhuman to a greater or lesser extent, and can fly. They can manifest a wide range of mental or energy powers, although the type and degree varies based on innate ability and the interest a given Empyrean has in developing specific powers, usually related to their preferred pastimes. The Empyreans and Arcadia are extensively described in Hidden Lands.

    Golden Age Legacies:  In the real world the earliest comic-book superheroes appeared starting in 1938, and continued to be created over the course of World War II. Champions Earth's first actual superhumans also began to appear during this period. Most of those heroes eventually retired, to be replaced by newer generations; but often those newer heroes were inspired by their predecessors, in many cases even to the point of adopting their code names as an homage. Most such "legacy heroes" were either the relatives or proteges of the originals, or sought their blessing to carry on their names. However, certain lineages originating in the Golden Age have been particularly fertile in continuing to produce new heroes to uphold the family tradition.
    In the winter of 1939 Kiril Lenskii was a young officer in the Soviet army serving in his country's war against Finland. Badly wounded in an attack that wiped out the rest of his unit, and overcome by the severe winter cold, Lenskii collapsed unconscious over underground caverns which released strange gasses. As they entered his lungs his body began to change. He awoke to discover that not only was his body healed and stronger than before, but he was now immune to the cold, and could even create intense cold, snow, and ice over limited areas. Given the code name, General Zima ("winter"), over the course of World War II Kiril Lenskii became the Soviet military's leading superhero, and remained so for many years.
    The three sons of fisherman and former naval sailor Morimoto Takashi (by a mysterious woman who may have been a supernatural spirit) were each born with extraordinary abilities: enormous strength and durability (Ichiro); incredible speed (Jiro); and probability manipulation (Saburo) manifesting as phenomenal luck for himself, and phenomenal misfortune for his opponents. The three young men were recruited by the Japanese government to fight their country's foes, first China in the 1930s, and later the Americans and their allies during WW II. They were among Japan's most prominent superhuman champions during and after the war.
    Each of the three Morimoto brothers had more than one superhuman offspring, while all seven of General Zima's children developed super powers. Today there are over two dozen "super" members of the extended Morimoto family, and descendants of General Zima, active in their respective homelands. It would be reasonable to expect a few of their relatives to have emigrated to other countries at some point.
    Although the histories of these characters don't explicitly state it one way or the other, there's no reason to assume superhumans from their lineages necessarily manifest the same types of powers as their ancestors. The mutations of all three original Morimoto brothers were radically different from each other; while General Zima's origin implies his abilities resulted from his body adapting to a specific environment.
    The full write-ups for General Zima and the Morimoto brothers appear in the latest edition of Golden Age Champions (for Hero System Sixth Edition).

    Hzeel Biomatter:  Champions Earth has experienced several alien invasions in the past, and is currently dealing with renewed intrusions by the Gadroon and Qularr. What no one on Earth knows yet, is that another aggressive species, the Hzeel, also have the Earth in their sights. These short, blue-skinned humanoids have scouted Earth for nearly two decades, wanting it as an advance staging area in their war against the Dorvalans (Ironclad's race).
    At least two Hzeel scout craft have crashed on Earth and been discovered by humans. One of these was salvaged by Roger Warwell, aka the Warlord, and its technology became the basis for his own weapon designs. Hzeel technology is partly biological, and can have radical unpredictable effects when it comes in contact with human tissue. Two humans, the solo supervillain Howler, and the Warlord's minion Warcry, gained superhuman vocal powers when Hzeel communications devices were implanted in their throats (this happening spontaneously on contact in the case of Howler).
    The effect also extends to tissues from Hzeel themselves; VIPER's staff supervillain Oculon gained his powerful eyebeams from eyes from an Hzeel corpse transplanted to his sockets. (Hzeel don't have eyebeams, they're the result of interaction between the two species' biologies.) Anyone using recognizable Hzeel materials would undoubtedly be of interest to both the Hzeel and the Warlord.
    The Hzeel have a whole chapter in Champions Beyond,  as do the Qularr and Gadroon, and the Dorvalans are also described there. The other villains mentioned are in the Champions Villains trilogy, except Oculon who's written up in VIPER: Coils Of The Serpent. Ironclad and the rest of the Champions superhero team get full write-ups for their beginning careers in the Champions genre book, with more experienced versions in Champions Universe.

    Kelvarite:  This mysterious, green-glowing extraterrestrial mineral has been found in meteorites from several falls. It's a powerful source of energy, but is extremely unstable and prone to explosion when disturbed. Some people who have been bombarded by radiation or fragments from exploding kelvarite have gained superhuman powers, typically (but not exclusively) superhuman strength and durability, and some type of enhanced movement capability, e.g. super-running or -leaping, flight, or teleportation. They also acquire a susceptibility to radiation from other samples of kelvarite. Known superhumans with this origin include the solo villains Tachyon and Thunderbolt II,  Dr. Destroyer's servant Meteor (all in the CV trilogy), and the African superhero Gazelle (in Champions Worldwide).
    Large organizations such as the US government and UNTIL have secured all the kelvarite they can find, but sometimes lend samples to research laboratories. Other kelvarite meteorites remain to be discovered. However, what no one is aware of is that what they call kelvarite is actually impure samples, which is why it's unstable. Pure kelvarite doesn't resemble the impure mineral, and is extremely rare on Earth. Its energies respond to the will of intelligent beings in physical contact with it, allowing them to wield formidable and versatile energy-projection powers. (It isn't obvious that the power comes from the kelvarite itself.) The only pure kelvarite discovered so far was made into rings worn by the four men who have used the superheroic identity, Meteor Man.
    Kelvarite is described in Champions Universe, while the first Meteor Man is written up in Golden Age Champions.

    Martial-Arts Temples:  For centuries, hidden enclaves have existed in the Far East where dedicated monks have practiced the most advanced physical and spiritual martial-arts techniques, including virtually superhuman abilities for those with the skill and determination to master them. Several official Champions heroes and villains were trained at such enclaves. The most legendary of these sites among  knowledgeable martial artists are Yengtao Temple, somewhere in the mountains of China; and the city of Shamballah, in a cave beneath a mountain in the Himalayas. Both sites are hidden from the outside world both physically and magically, so that only those already highly disciplined in body and mind can find them. But those who do can study almost any martial art that has ever existed, and perhaps achieve abilities like the heroes of legend.
    Various students at Yengtao Temple have returned to the outside world to become heroes, or villains. In the present day the Millennium City superhero Nightwind, his bitter rival Jade Phoenix, and the Hong Kong hero Golden Dragon Fist, all learned their extraordinary skills and ch'i powers from Yengtao. Jade Phoenix was responsible for the destruction of Yengtao Temple and murder of the monks in 1996, but there may be other former students alive in the world. And Shamballah, second only to Yengtao as a repository of mystic martial-arts secrets, still stands.
    But Shamballah also guards a dark secret even further beneath the mountain: its evil twin city, Agharti, prison of the Dark Monks, also extraordinarily skilled but utterly corrupt. While the Shamballans prevent the Dark Monks from escaping, they don't forbid outsiders from visiting the city, or leaving afterwards. The villain Zhua Teng ("grasping vine") received training in Agharti.
    The story of Yengtao Temple, and description of some of its unique techniques, appear in Champions Universe. Shamballah and Agharti are described in considerable detail in Hidden Lands. Nightwind's latest write-up is in Millennium City, while Jade Phoenix is in Champions Villains Volume Three. Zhua Teng is fully written up in Martial Enemies Volume 1.

    Professional Armorers:  One of the staples of the superhero genre is the gadget-using super, with no actual super-powers but employing equipment made of special materials and/or incorporating advanced technology. Most comic-book heroes build their own gadgets, or have them designed for them by benevolent patron inventors or agencies. Some heroes acquire prototype devices by accident, including "liberating" them from their villainous makers (often earning them pursuit by the vengeful villain). But it's not unheard-of in comics for a scientist -- usually one of criminal bent -- to sell his technological services to whoever will pay.
    In the official Champions Universe there are several possible sources of scientific expertise for hire to aspiring supers. Most of these are considered criminals by most world law-enforcement, so don't typically contract with anyone of obvious heroic bent who might cause them trouble. But for another criminal, or a mercenary or vigilante of grey morality, they're often the route to quick super status.
    Millennium City is the home base of Wayland Talos, a brilliant inventor with a pathological hatred of superheroes. To strike back at them he supplies villains with everything from questionite hand weapons, to energy blasters or jet packs, to full suits of powered armor. He's considered one of the underworld's premier armorers, with few individual competitors. One of those competitors is known as Brainchild, a telepathic gadgeteer who primarily supplies tactical and technical support to other criminals, rather than take the risk of committing his own crimes.
    On the international front, the Warlord is a powered-armor villain and would-be conqueror who's also a major dealer in high-tech armaments, and who has created super-class weaponry and armor for individuals for the right price. The unscrupulous corporation called ARGENT does a thriving business in service to criminals; not just supplying gadgetry, but even physically augmenting a person through bionic implants or experimental biochemical treatments. The independent city-state of Larisagrad was once a center for the USSR's classified scientific research, including advanced weaponry, and experiments to create true superhumans. After the collapse of the Soviet Union and thus their funding, the scientists of Larisagrad chose to freelance to the highest bidder.
    The only truly benign inventor engaged in remotely similar activity is named Ralph Polarewski. Formerly the full-time technical supervisor to the famous Sentinels superhero team, Ralph left them after a bitter argument with the team's leader. He's become a well-known freelance contractor to members of the superhero community who use gadgets but have no technical skills of their own. As written he primarily works for people already established as heroes (and would never sell his services to someone of questionable morality), but would be well able to supply an equipment-based origin to someone who could convince him of their sincerity and dedication.
    ARGENT  and Larisagrad are described in Champions Universe. The Warlord and his organization are fully written up in Volume One of the Champions Villains trilogy, while Brainchild and Wayland Talos get the same treatment in Volume Three. Ralph Polarewski is detailed in the book, Everyman.

    Project Sunburst:  In 1994 a group of American "rogue generals" assigned over 200 volunteer soldiers to what they were told was a war game. In fact the generals were experimenting to try to create superpowered soldiers resistant to radiation, by detonating a nuclear device near them while they wore protective suits. Most of the volunteers soon died of radiation poisoning, while a handful slipped into comas. Most of the comatose were placed into a secret holding facility, codenamed "The Crypt," while a few were stored at other sites.
    In the intervening years, several of these survivors have developed superhuman physical and energy powers. A few, such as the master villain Sunburst and his follower Radium, awakened spontaneously. Others, like Dr. Destroyer's security chief, Gigaton, were aroused with help from other villains. Some escaped the Crypt on their own, while others were "liberated." All the active survivors except Gigaton and the powered-armor villain, Armadillo, have joined Sunburst. However, the remaining comatose subjects are still being kept in secret in the Crypt, not just from the public but from the generals' own superiors.
    Most of these villains are fully written up in Champions Villains Vol. 1: Master Villains, although Armadillo is in Vol. 3

    Radium-X:  This radioactive element has been known to science on Champions Earth since at least the 1930s. It's well known for its radiation's mutagenic properties, able to induce radical, even super-empowering mutations in living organisms under certain conditions. For example, it's a critical component of Dr. Phillippe Moreau's process for creating Manimals. The late superhero Tiger, a former leader of the famous Sentinels superhero team, was a former UNTIL agent who became a man-tiger hybrid through accidental exposure to radium-X and some of Moreau's chemicals during a raid on the Doctor's lab. In 1940 a Bulgarian laboratory researcher gained formidable magnetic powers after the failure of an experimental magnetron being powered by radium-X flooded her lab with radiation. She took the code-name Leitstern ("lodestar") and was drafted to fight with Germany during WW II.
    The preceding examples suggest that the specific mutations caused by radium-X are thematically linked to the environmental conditions applying at the time. The origin of Leitstern also highlights another major use for radium-X, as a concentrated high-energy power source for various devices. The Golden Age villain Liquifier needed that element to power his Matter-Liquifier Ray, which could change any inanimate solid matter to a liquid state. It's possible that other radical technology can only be powered by radium-X's unique radiation.
    Radium-X can be purchased legally. Various research laboratories are noted as studying or using it. However, the clear implication of references to it is that it's rare and expensive, leading to attempts to steal it by people with less than upright intentions for it.
    Dr. Phillippe Moreau and his followers are fully written up in Champions Villains Volume One: Master Villains, while both Leitstern and Liquifier are detailed in Golden Age Champions. Tiger has never been given a full background story or Hero System character sheet, but is mentioned and briefly described in CV Vol. 1, Champions Universe, and Book Of The Destroyer.

    The Swords of Nama:  During the Dark Ages the serpent-god Nama, who is today the patron deity of VIPER, set out to become a great power among Men. He gathered six mighty warriors from across Eurasia to be his agents and generals, to conquer an empire in his name. For each warrior he forged a powerful enchanted sword. But before they could achieve any major successes the warriors quarreled, which ultimately led to all their deaths. The Swords of Nama were scattered. Over the intervening centuries some of these legendary swords reappeared, and a few were destroyed; but others remain to be discovered in ruins across Eastern Europe.
    The story of the six "vipers upon the land" appears as a small part of the history of Nama and VIPER, on p. 6 of the book, VIPER: Coils Of The Serpent. Aside from being called "serpent-blades" the Swords of Nama aren't described, nor are any of their qualities defined, which leaves a player free to imbue a particular sword with any powers desired. Note that Nama is neither good nor evil, and has helped heroes or villains as the mood struck him; so there's no inherent reason for his Swords to be one or the other.

    Teleios, the Perfect Man:  The foremost genetic engineer on Champions Earth today, Teleios is infamous for being a cloner of people, and a creator of animalistic monsters, but the range of his genetic expertise goes far beyond that. More than half a dozen official supers, villainous and heroic, owe their powers or very existence to The Perfect Man.
    Teleios has the skill to induce almost any super power in any human, whether or not that person already has powers or the potential for them. Teleios will do this for pay, or in exchange for services or favors, as he did for the supervillain-turned-hero Flashover (Champions Universe: News Of The World), and her brother, the villain Hurricane (Champions Villains Vol. 3: Solo Villains). Teleios has been known to bestow powers on someone on a whim, whether or not they want them, like after a dalliance with the Indian woman now known as Monsoon (Champions Worldwide).
    The Perfect Man can grow completely original, humanoid or human-looking superhumans with any abilities he chooses. He sometimes sells his creations, as when he supplied VIPER with the powerful monster named Obelisque (Champions Worldwide). Sometimes Teleios turns a creation loose in the world uncontrolled (although not unmonitored), to see how it responds and develops. He did this with the beings labeled the Landsman, and the Lodge (both in Champions Of The North).
    The master geneticist can program his creations with whatever skills he or his employer desires. He can even implant elaborate false memories, to the point where the person has no idea he or she is artificial or has any connection to the Perfect Man. This is how Teleios programs the cloned soldiers he sells to other villains and groups. The superheroine called the Teen Dream (Teen Champions), whom Teleios designed as an experiment in social manipulation, is unaware of her real origin and considers herself a true hero. When he makes a creature Teleios implants controlling genes that make it psychologically impossible for that creature to harm him, or may even make it a loyal follower (although those controls have been known to fail on very rare occasions). Those controls can be so subtle that a person isn't consciously aware of them. Although the lore doesn't specify it, it may be possible for Teleios to do this to humans he augments. He definitely is known to build exploitable secret weaknesses into their genetic code, should they turn against him.
    Teleios is fully written up in Champions Villains Vol. 1: Master Villains.

    Vandaleur Bloodline:  Founded a thousand years ago by their immortal progenitor, Adrian Vandaleur, this widespread clan of sorcerers is one of the premier occult dynasties in the Western world. Although the majority of Vandaleurs have no more talent for magic than most people, the gift for spell casting is far more common among them than in the general populace; and their ranks include some of the most powerful mages in the world.
    Members of the family are aware of each other, and sometimes cooperate, sometimes conflict. But Adrian Vandaleur, whose power dwarfs that of his kin, keeps any factionalism from descending into violence. Otherwise individual Vandaleurs are free to follow whatever activities they like. Their personalities and morality vary widely. Some are benevolent, even heroic; others are amoral and ruthless, up to megalomaniacal psychopaths. Most are simply concerned with their own interests.
    Any Vandaleur with magical ability and desire to develop it could find family members able and willing to train him. The Vandaleur family are described in detail in Champions Villains Vol. 2: Villain Teams.

    The Vita-Man Clan:  Percy Yates was born in Los Angeles in 1910. Brilliant but sickly throughout his youth, he studied biology, chemistry, and nutrition to find ways to improve his own health. In 1939 he discovered a compound which when administered in a pill had a miraculous effect on him, transforming his body to one of perfect health and exceptional physical vigor. Further experimentation led to additional pills granting him true super-powers, including X-ray vision, invisibility, flight, growth to giant size and strength, or shrinking to the size of a mouse.
    Yates's discoveries had two major drawbacks. Their effects were only temporary -- his main vitalizing pill lasted about an hour per dose, while his additional abilities endured for only a minute. Yates was also unable to make them work for anyone else -- they interacted with his own unique physiology. Nonetheless he used his new abilities to fight crime under the costumed identity of Vita-Man. Vita-Man was recruited by the Drifter as one of the founding members of the Justice Squadron superhero team, protecting the west coast of the United States during WW II.
    Percy Yates's health continued to deteriorate over time, leading to his retirement as Vita-Man in 1948, and his death in 1964. But in the intervening years he learned that several of his family members shared the biological factors which would allow them to use his empowering treatments. Today half a dozen of his kin are using "variations of his discoveries" (wording suggesting that other powers are possible).
    Vita-Man's full background and character sheet are included in the Golden Age Champions Secret Files, a PDF collecting outtakes from the manuscript for the latest edition of Golden Age Champions.

    The Zodiac Working:  In 1979 the late master villain Archimago, greatest sorceror of the Twentieth Century, attempted this fearsome ritual, to impregnate twelve women by twelve powerful demons. The resulting hybrid children could be used by the demons as hosts to incarnate themselves on Earth with all their power. The ritual was interrupted and the women rescued by the superhero team, the Fabulous Five. The women seemed unharmed and weren't pregnant, so returned home.
    Two years later one of these women married and gave birth to a girl who later manifested powers of destructive energy, as well as a propensity for rage and vandalism. She grew up to become the supervillain Frag (fully written up in CV Vol. 3). She has no knowledge of her true origins, thinking herself a mutant. Although she usually appears human, when enraged her form becomes more demonic-looking.
    Another of these women gave birth to a son, who now acts as the superhero Pagan (described in the book The Ultimate Mystic). In his superhero identity (resembling a satyr) he's physically superhuman and can project powerful mystic light. Pagan discovered his true heritage when his demonic father Belial attempted to seduce him to his service. Although his diabolical inclinations are strong, Pagan's inherent decency has so far won out.
    To date nothing has been revealed about the other ten victims of the Zodiac Working.
  13. Thanks
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Duke Bushido in Reviews   
    These are pretty nice scans and I like the colorized pictures!
  14. Thanks
    DreadDomain reacted to Gnome BODY (important!) in Invulnerability   
    Firstly, if I'm allowing a character to have "invulnerability" I'm not going to "well actually no" them.  I'm going to let them be actually invulnerable.  Because I told them "This construct is invulnerability" and I'm not going to lie to a player about mechanics. 
    Secondly because I might allow invulnerability Only/Not Against THING.  Likewise I might allow LARGE NUMBER ATTACK Only Against THING.  And I'd expect both of these to work.  If Captain Invulnerable-To-Fire can be hurt by Ghost Burning Flame, something is horribly wrong. 
    I am leaving this thread at this point because I do not feel this discussion is civil anymore. It is just two sides failing to engage with each other.  There is no point in anyone continuing in my eyes. 
  15. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Sketchpad in How to Build: Clear the Room   
    Oh the possibilities...
  16. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Scott Ruggels in How to Build: Clear the Room   
    Have you considered just using Multiple-Attacks? Multiple-Attacks:
    take a full phase. You can reduce that to half a phase if you buy Rapid Attack at 5 points (or 10 points for both melee and ranged attack) impose a -2 OCV penalty per extra target. Based on Offensive Penalty Skill Level you could buy this off at 2 points per +1 OCV puts you at ½ DCV but you can also improve that by buying Defensive Penalty Skill Level at 2 points per +1 The multiple attacks sequence stop if you miss your roll. What you suggest is even more constraining so it could be worth an extra limitation So for no points at all, you could use Multiple Attacks, or if you want to be better at it, yoy could pay to improve your abilities.
    Say this is only for melee attacks. 
    Clear the Room (½ phase HTH multiple attacks sequence , +6 vs OCV and DCV penalties); Rapid Attack-HTH (5AP), OPSL +6 (12AP), DPSL +6 (12AP) Total 29 points
    Using any of your HTH attack, you can attack 3 agents at no penalty as long as you don't miss and at extra -2 OCV per target if you try to go for more target. If you insist on having the sequence stopped if you do not incapacitate a target, I would call that an extra -½ limitation for a final cost of 19 points.
    The drawback is that it would cost you more END to complete than your proposed build unless your attack(s) are not too onerous on END.
  17. Thanks
    DreadDomain reacted to Sketchpad in How to Build: Clear the Room   
    Hmm... that's an interesting idea, Ninja-Bear. It would be a neat way of making agents more vulnerable to heroic attacks and cause them to fold. Maybe that could be a campaign rule.
    DreadDomain, you know, it's funny as, after I posted this, I was looking over those rules a bit more. This might also be a great way emulate what I'm looking for. I might also suggest a 0 END advantage on STR for characters that would use this. 
  18. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Sketchpad in How to Build: Clear the Room   
    Have you considered just using Multiple-Attacks? Multiple-Attacks:
    take a full phase. You can reduce that to half a phase if you buy Rapid Attack at 5 points (or 10 points for both melee and ranged attack) impose a -2 OCV penalty per extra target. Based on Offensive Penalty Skill Level you could buy this off at 2 points per +1 OCV puts you at ½ DCV but you can also improve that by buying Defensive Penalty Skill Level at 2 points per +1 The multiple attacks sequence stop if you miss your roll. What you suggest is even more constraining so it could be worth an extra limitation So for no points at all, you could use Multiple Attacks, or if you want to be better at it, yoy could pay to improve your abilities.
    Say this is only for melee attacks. 
    Clear the Room (½ phase HTH multiple attacks sequence , +6 vs OCV and DCV penalties); Rapid Attack-HTH (5AP), OPSL +6 (12AP), DPSL +6 (12AP) Total 29 points
    Using any of your HTH attack, you can attack 3 agents at no penalty as long as you don't miss and at extra -2 OCV per target if you try to go for more target. If you insist on having the sequence stopped if you do not incapacitate a target, I would call that an extra -½ limitation for a final cost of 19 points.
    The drawback is that it would cost you more END to complete than your proposed build unless your attack(s) are not too onerous on END.
  19. Thanks
    DreadDomain reacted to massey in Invulnerability   
    It normally wouldn't.  That's why he's got a higher Speed.  The intent is for him to abort to whatever the best defense is, so that he doesn't have to face that issue.  If it were drawn on a comic book page, he wouldn't be doing anything other than standing still, shrugging off the attack.  Now obviously, he's not always gonna know what the best defense is.  That's life though.

    Here Superman uses his held phase to go desolid.
    Story-wise, he's not using an action (even though in game rules, that's exactly what is happening).  Story-wise, it's just the other guy's turn to go, and the attack harmlessly bounces off of Captain Invulnerable.  Now when he gets attacked by the ghost blaster power, the player may choose to switch away from Desolidification to some other power, but the character is just standing there.
    Occasionally you'll get a situation where he guesses wrong, and an attack that doesn't seem that it should be particularly damaging will do a significant chunk of Stun to him.  That happens in comics too.  Sometimes you just get a weird interaction of powers.  And you can either come up with some BS explantion ("the ghost blaster is interacting with the strange energies I encountered earlier!  It's harming me even through my invulnerability!"), or you can have him pretend it doesn't hurt.  Instead of saying "yeeaargghh!" when he takes 25 Stun, he just laughs it off.  He's got 60 Stun, after all.
  20. Like
    DreadDomain reacted to massey in Invulnerability   
    Captain Invulnerable
    Str 60
    Dex 20
    Con 30
    Body 15
    Int 13
    Ego 14
    Pre 20
    Com 12
    PD 20
    ED 20
    Spd 7
    Rec 18
    End 60
    Stun 60
    15" Flight x4 noncombat
    1" Flight Megascale (1" = 1 km)
    15/15 Damage Resistance
    40 point Multipower "Invulnerability"
    --Desolidification, cannot pass through solid objects
    --20/20 Force Field
    --Missile Deflection (all), and +4 DCV
    +2 OCV w/ punch, grab, and missile deflect
    Breakfall 13-
    Deduction 12-
    Electronics 12-
    Mechanics 12-
    Paramedics 12-
    Persuasion 13-
    Teamwork 13-
    Biology 11-
    Chemistry 11-
    Physics 11-
    Physical Limitation:  In combat, 2 points of Speed per turn must be used for holding action/aborting to defensive actions (max Spd 5 for attacks)
    350 points total
    There you go.  That's a quick and dirty, 5 minute character.  He's super strong, he's got an array of what I consider to be classic competent superhero skills, and as long as you aren't stupid with him he'll be really hard to hurt.
    His multipower lets him shrug off all kinds of stuff.  He just looks tougher when he's using it.  He practically... umm... glows with toughness, or something.
    He gets actions on 2, 4, 6, 7, 9, 11, and 12.  To prevent him from being lazy and just leaving his multipower in Force Field, he's got a physical limitation where he's supposed to use 2 actions per turn defensively.  Most phases he should probably hold until after everyone else has acted, but use it before he would lose his action.  So we'll say he starts the turn with his force field active.  Then on segment 2, he holds until towards the end of segment 3.  Nobody shoots at him with anything major (no Giga-Buster attacks, nobody throws a fuel truck at him), so as you get down to about Dex 10 on segment 3 he decides to fly over and punch somebody.  On segment 4 he holds again, knowing that the bulk of the opponents will probably be acting on segment 5, he holds until near the end of 5.  Again, nobody does anything crazy, so about Dex 10 of 5 he punches somebody again. 
    Then on Dex 30 of Segment 6, Death Ninja jumps out of the shadows with his Atomic Blade and takes a swipe at our hero.  The player has peeked at the bad guy's character sheet and knows that it's an NND that Does Body.  So Captain Invulnerable aborts his Segment 6 and activates Desolidification.  Special effect-wise, it looks like the blade just bounces off of him.  Or the energy of the blade goes right into him, maybe even coming out the other side, but when the blade is pulled back out there's no injury apparent.  Game-wise, everybody knows it's Desolid and can react appropriately, because he didn't buy it invisible.  But for coolness and description, it just looks like it harmlessly bounced off.  Captain Invulnerable has now used one of his actions defensively.
    On Segment 7 Dex 30, Death Ninja decides to go elsewhere.  He's an ambush hunter, and his best attack failed to do anything, and he doesn't want Captain Invulnerable to smack him with a car.  Since that was the good Captain's plan, and now he doesn't have an immediate target (and he likes to appear invulnerable), he holds action until the end of 8.  He's still Desolid at this time.  On Segment 8, Dex 20, Crazed Scientist Man whips out his Ghost Murderer Beam, which looks exactly like a Ghostbusters proton pack.  Captain Invulnerable thinks "Yipe!", and knowing it probably Affects Desolid, he decides to use his held action to switch to his Missile Deflection power and DCV levels.  His DCV goes up to 11, and he uses OCV 9 to try to block the incoming beam.  So whether he blocks it, or whether the scientist misses his new higher DCV, the visual effect is the same.  Captain Invulnerable performs a chest block and the beam harmlessly scatters off of him.  The hero has now used 2 of his actions defensively, and he's free to attack the rest of the turn.
    On Segment 9, the player knows he wants to get in his attacks, so he's done holding action for now.  He switches back to Force Field, and flies over to the evil scientist and starts pounding him.  On segments 11 and 12 he does the same thing.
    There you go.  Now, yeah it's possible that he'll get caught with his pants down.  He could blow a missile deflection roll, or switch to desolid and get hit with an affects desolid attack.  Them's the breaks.  Even Superman gets hit by things that lay him out on occasion.  That's why Captain Invulnerable has a really high Speed, so he can burn actions defensively to preserve his "I can't be hurt" mystique.
  21. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Sketchpad in Champions: The Super Role Playing Game (4th edition)   
    Yes, this. A full colour, remastered Champions 4E would be glorious.
  22. Like
    DreadDomain reacted to Sketchpad in Champions: The Super Role Playing Game (4th edition)   
    I would back that. Heck, for that matter it be nice to have stretch goals to colorize the book, make a HD Update for it, and to include a remastered GM Screen. 
  23. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Jab Gideon in What other superhero RPGs have you played?   
    somewhere else I have answered this...
    For me, this is a no brainer, a no contest. Over the years, there was one system to rule them all when it came to superhero roleplaying; Champions/HERO. I thought about creating a top ten ranking but after Champions, whatever would come up next would only be a very distant second place. To make this post a bit more than just “Champions is the best”, I have used different lenses when thinking about other systems that I am still fond of or interested about. Let’s see…
    The Nostalgia Effect
    There are a few games that always kind of interest me because of the good old days. It includes, Villains & Vigilantes, FASERIP, DC Heroes. I like these games but when it comes down to choosing a game to play or run a superhero game, there is less than 1% chance I would choose one of those games. DC Heroes specifically would also have to compete against M&M so even less likely for this classic.
    The Games I Read Over and Over Again
    These are the games I read, decided it wasn’t for me (didn’t scratch my itch or decided other games would suit me better) but still, occasionally come back to because of positive comments on these boards or elsewhere. Invariably, I come to draw the same conclusion. The comic-booky simplicity of those games is attractive, but it is not for me. They are not granular enough, or too hand wavy or don’t provide the full power definition or tactical options that I love. It includes ICON, BASH and SUPERS. Although they seem to be very good games, there is 0% chance I would end up choosing one of those.
    The Games I am Curious About
    There are a few games that I have skimmed through, thought looked excellent but really don’t have any kind of experience with them. They give me this warm feeling that I could love them if I would invest a bit of time with them… or they could become Games I Read Over and Over Again.  For a game or a campaign, I could choose one of those games… but only if I had enough time to invest in preparation.
    Prowlers & Paragons is a nice-looking game that seems to fall between the simplicity of ICON and the full-blown power of Champions. Does it hit a sweet spot? Does it play well? Would it offer me enough options, both in character creation and in play, to satisfy me?
    Wearing the Cape might be a game that make me get, and like FATE. I haven’t read the novels but the game looks good. Where P&P might offer an easier Champions, WtC seems to offer a different game play altogether, more in the vein of Marvel Heroic Roleplay perhaps.
    Eschaton, powered by EABA is a game in the same vein as HERO and GURPS and both have an obvious influence on its design. The game uses very interesting mechanics (the resolution system, the turn rate) and a very deconstructed power design system that feels very powerful but somewhat hermetic and difficult to master. Granularity is good and the number of tactical options available seems reasonable. The setting is set after the Eschaton, the emergence of super-powered individual, and is introduced through scenarios on Day 1, Week 1, Month 1, etc. The game seems to be easily tuneable to get either a four-color style or a more post-apocalyptic feel. The books would benefit from better graphic design and editing.
    The Games I’d Like to Love
    These are the games I’d like to love enough so they could dethrone Champions or at least give an alternative. While those games don’t quite have what it takes to do so, I really do like the idea or the concept behind the game.
    GURPS Supers is surprisingly the only other system we have successfully used in a long-term superhero campaign (all other attempted collapsed quickly). GURPS is very granular and is very detailed when it comes to mechanics but scales very awkwardly for a four-color game. It does up to say Spider-Man level reasonably well but becomes somewhat difficult to balance at high level. To put it another way, it takes a lot of effort and campaign decisions to make it playable when you have a lot of points to spend. So why would I like to love it? GURPS is allegedly one of the best all-around system on the market and the support for GURPS is phenomenal in quantity (although mostly in PDF) and quality of content (less so when it comes to art). If it could do supers in a convincing way, it could end up being my one stop shop for roleplaying. The only reason I would use GURPS Supers these days would be for a gritty, low-powered game… but chances are I would still choose Champions anyway.
    Marvel Heroic Roleplaying soon to be Coxtex Prime (althought CP is more than just supers) really brought something to the table. It did make me think about roleplaying in a slightly different way. The system is very flexible across all power levels. However, it is not very granular, has limited tactical options in play and is very gamey. When we tried it, we really struggled to remain immersed in the story because the system is less about what characters choose to do in game and more about how the players will use plot point and assign rolled dice to get to a result to narrate. Still, MHR brings a totally different game style to Champions and the upcoming Cortex Prime could convince me to give it another go. With Cortex Prime, I will be able to pick and choose game elements according to my tastes. You can be sure Affiliations will not be used by me again.
    Mutants & Masterminds is closer to Champions than any other games on this list so it seems natural that it is featured. While GURPS Supers turns the granularity/options dial to 11, M&M turns it down to 7, which could be a good thing. While M&M fans will repeat the meme that M&M does 80% of what HERO does for 20% of the complexity, it is only exactly that, a meme. The numbers are chosen (sometimes we see 90/10) to stress a point: M&M is somewhat less powerful than HERO and somewhat less complex. My own perception of M&M is that it can do 80% of what HERO does for about 80% of the work (and because I am more fluent in HERO than M&M, it is currently 200% of the work 😊). The quality of the supplements is excellent even if they do not produce as often or as quickly as during the better days of the game. Full colour, hard covers with good art and contents, what is not to love. Add to it a streamlined scale and generally more compact write-ups than Champions and you really want to adopt it. However, the d20 resolution is swingy, the tactical options are not as numerous as it is in Champions and character creation not quite as meaty. I appreciate this is exactly what others are after but for me, it means that M&M is only 80% as enjoyable as HERO. The trade-off in the end is not good. Maybe one day it will click but for now M&M plays in the exact same space as Champions and unless I specifically want to give it another chance, I would never choose it over Champs.  
    The Uncontested Champion (see what I did here)
    Champions is far from perfect but it ticks a lot of the boxes that I am looking for in a game. Characters are well defined with abilities, interact with the story in a tactical way and suffer very measurable consequences. As I said in another thread, Champions is very "crunch scalable" and most of the complexity lies in the power creation system. During character creation, the system gives you the power to detail, tweak, to the nth degree so you can mechanically come up with the exact effect you envision. But you don't have too. By choosing the rules enforced in the campaign, the GM contributes to set the crunch dial for the game but when creating a character, the player(s) also have a heavy influence on how crunchy they want to play. I’ve seen players (including me) totally enjoy the character creation mini-game, tweaky, changing, trying different powers until they were absolutely satisfied. I’ve seen other players creating ultra-versatile characters making them much more complex to play but hey, that is what they wanted. I have also seen other players putting a very simple character in half an hour. One of my most epic character was built that way. In play, because the game is so well balanced, how crunchy or detailed you go doesn’t really advantage nor disadvantage you (but that is not to say some builds are not more effective than others, it is just not a function of complexity). Once character creation is done, I have found the in-play experience to be one of the most immersive because the rules work in a way that you would expect them to work; they make sense. The Champions Universe is very well detailed and emulates the mainstream comic books from cosmic power gaming to dark urban gaming. The quality of the first batch of books published for its 6th edition is excellent. Champions, Champions Universe, the three Champions Villains volumes, Fantasy HERO and Star HERO are gorgeous books. My own personal favorite books are none other than HERO 6th volume 1 and 2. Champions Complete, while not as striking, gets kudos for returning the game to a much more manageable format (240 pages).
    But in true super-heroic tradition, what-if Champions didn’t exist? What system would I choose? That’s a tough one. Assuming I would still look for crunchy goodness, I believe I would try to get the most out of GURPS Supers but would complement it with better suited systems for high level games, most likely M&M or Eschaton/EABA. I could also give a try to the latest edition of V&V, which I haven’t read yet or, if could finally be bitten by the Cortex Prime bug. Irrespective of what my choice would be, there are so many good games to choose from these days…
  24. Like
    DreadDomain got a reaction from Sketchpad in What other superhero RPGs have you played?   
    Thanks Sketchpad, it's very kind of you. It's available in the download section (DC and Marvel Sample Heroes 1.0.0) if anyone is interested. I'll try to put a few more characters in the pack this week-end.
    I created this character sheet because I generally find the official sheets unappealing. 
  25. Thanks
    DreadDomain got a reaction from pbemguy in What other superhero RPGs have you played?   
    I agree with all of the above. It was getting close but there still something missing and I believe the text book vibe is what I could not put my finger on. My favorites were 6E1, 6E2, Champions and Fantasy HERO. Champions Villains were great but they could have done with a better character sheet layout and some of the art did not quite have the right vibe. Ahhh that era did not last long...
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