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Brian Stanfield

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Everything posted by Brian Stanfield

  1. Yup, Xotl put it together a few years ago after this long discussion. It’s really quite well done.
  2. For what it’s worth, there are a lot of playing aids in the downloads area. I mean a lot! See if there’s anything you like that you could use as handouts. Or get ideas to create your own handout. [Name redacted] is such a nerd that he actually owns a laminator to create player aids as laminated cards to have on hand each game session as [name redacted]’s players learn the game.
  3. I encourage you to at least look at the first paragraph about Kayfabe. Not only is it fascinating as a sociological study, it fits perfectly into a wrestling hero. The audience and fellow wrestlers actively suspend disbelief in the interest of better drama. They’re all participating in mutually gaming the game. Seems to fit into the spirit of your game here.
  4. Thanks, Ninja-Bear. Do you know if this wall of text is from the Adventurers Club #17 that I mentioned above?
  5. Hey, can you point me to the Ninja HERO errata? Is it a file, or is it the Adventurers Club 17 article that you're talking about? And . . . does anyone have Adventurers Club 17?
  6. It should be the same book. As far as I know there were no modifications made to the PDF or the paper copy.
  7. Duke, that first link says your file is in the trash and can’t be seen . . . .
  8. Mishine, send a message to Simon about older HD versions. He’s the designer and answers all the forum questions about it. I’d make it a private message, though, so he doesn’t feel cornered by whatever he might tell you in a public forum.
  9. Hero Designer works just fine on a Mac since it is a Java app. As for 4th edition, you’d have to find an older version of HD (v.3 I think) to be compatible.
  10. A similar conversation came up earlier this year, and I suggested a way to alleviate the perceived advantage of magic vs mundane items. The discussion can be found here. TLDR=make everyone buy everything as powers, just like in Champions. So spells, crazy maneuvers, rogue talents, barbaric rage, even armor and weapons, are all designed with powers. This may be a way to overcome the perceived imbalance.
  11. I came up with a crazy complex magic system once just for the hell of it. It had schools of magic based on the HERO System Grimoire to make it easier for players to group their spells, and each school had its own Multipower. They were heavily modified with all the usual stuff (gestures, incantations, etc.). But in order to make it harder to always have just the right tool whenever they wanted, they had to have science skills based on each school they learned, and had to make skill rolls any time they wanted to change their slots. I even had END battery and long term END rules. The requirements go on, but you get the idea. If you want to really limit how efficient spellcasters become, you can make it more complicated to acquire new spells. Maybe they have to actually have a new scroll in hand to change the slots of the Multipower to include a new spell. Maybe they have to be taught. Maybe they have to go to a spell college's library and do research. Require skill rolls for the particular school of magic when changes are made. Maybe they can modify or generate new spells on their own, but then they'd need to have a Science Skill to completely create something new. And so on. The idea is that a fighter has points spent on skills that he'll always have access to, and can utilize them almost any time. He'll spend point on them, but maybe they're an equivalent number of points. The wizard will spend at least as many points, discounted by the Multipowers, but they'll also have to spend points on other school skills to make the spells more useful, and they are by no means certain. Also, if they want to become more proficient, it'll become more expensive as they add new schools, or science skills, etc. I don't know how the points balance out in the long term, but it's at least a way to try to limit the power of a wizard at the beginning. I feel that they should be more powerful than others as they become more experienced, but to become that experienced they'll have to do more and more complex and uncertain tasks to advance. A fighter can just keep hacking away and add CSLs and stuff to just get better and better. A wizard has to slow down and plan ahead. There are all sorts of meta-mechanical ways to set the rules in the game to get the desired effect. As they say, set the dials to your preference. Just another 2¢.
  12. Exactly. Like Microsoft or not, when they made all of their web apps free it has made them much more accessible, and they're beautifully integrated. My Mac allows me to use my iPad as a "side car," which functions as an extended desktop, so I can pretty much use it as my "white board" for my students. And I can also use OneNote to publish maps and text and what not if I prefer it that way. Players can have their own tabs in the notebook, and we can share tabs, etc. And also create a campaign Wiki if we want. It should all work pretty well for a gaming group. There are dice rollers available separately (online, not through Microsoft . . . yet), but I just trust people to roll their own dice, so it's a wash either way. It's not a perfect solution, but it's workable.
  13. For what it’s worth, I’ve been considering playing online with my group using Microsoft Teams. I know there are all the problems with the Evil Empire of Computing, but my school has a license and so I use it regularly, and it’s also free for any individual to use outside of our license. We’ve been doing real-time meetings and such to finish out the semester, so I’ve gotten to see some interesting stuff. The main feature that has caught my attention is the Whiteboard app. You can have a video conference but also use your tablet, or a secondary screen of some kind, to share your desktop for others to see. This could be for your own scribbles, or it could be a full map. The point is, it allows real-time chatting with a visual reference tool. Everything a gamer needs for a basic startup, without a lot of problems. It’s a very basic solution without the gaming environment, but as folks like Doc are suggesting, it doesn’t require a lot of prep to get set up and going. One of the things that gaming sites offer is also covered by Teams: using OneNote for campaign management. There are lots of YouTube videos showing how people use this resource, and I made that shift anyway, even before the virus closed hints down. Anyway, I’m not trying to advertise Microsoft, but it is a free and fully functional option.
  14. It's just a shame that DOJ isn't taking advantage of such a huge resource in its fans who are willing to do a lot of this work, do it well, and do it for free. A lot of the other "big game" companies (D&D, Pathfinder, etc.) are kept afloat in part by their fan community generated content. At least DOJ has finally accepted a twenty-year-old model with the Hall of Champions. Unfortunately, they aren't giving anyone updated and professional looking graphics to work with. I get that a lot of the art is older and "retro," and that's fine and it's working well. The community generated content is, indeed, at least partly amateur, but some of it looks amazing! There is no reason, however, why the company should itself rest on such amateurish resources as out-of-date files. There's just no excuse that the company logo looks like a 60x60 .jpg ripped from a clipart file from 1995. The newer 6e covers shouldn't look so hacked up either for being the "current" edition of the game. It all just doesn't come off as very professional, and as a consumer of games this is something that I pay attention to. DOJ doesn't even have to spend any money to get these things updated, as there is a whole line of people willing to volunteer their help! Agh! I'm getting wound up again. It doesn't help that I'm retyping this after my last post timed out and got lost in the aether somewhere!
  15. Yeah, what's available now is illegible. Definitely not "high quality scans" as advertised.
  16. Duke, watching that first video with your "helpers" is like watching an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000! I was laughing out loud for the better part of thirty minutes! Thanks for the review(s), and for reminding us what we should be expecting when we pay money for a product. Big Jack, I have many of the POD books for 6e because I was out of gaming for several decades and missed getting all the books in their original form. I am very impressed with the quality of the books I got (the Equipment Guide, Skills, Grimoire, and all sorts of others). They don't suffer from the same problem as the new 4e book. They're clear and crisp and the paper quality is good and durable. The cover colors may vary a little bit, but I'm not sure the original books were even exactly the same anyway. In short, I have a shelf full of the 6e books and I couldn't tell you which are the originals that I was able to hunt down, and which are the PODs. They're worth getting. I'm really embarrassed by the 4e POD release. Duke covers it pretty much in each of his videos. I "helped" (much like the "helpers" in the first video) to clean up the Western HERO book with Duke, although he did all the work. He did such an amazing job, I can't figure out why they'd release such a piece of garbage at the 4e Champions book when Duke has offered to volunteer his time and work for them to have a clean copy of a much superior quality. It doesn't really bode well for how decisions are being made for the HERO System (a common complaint I make and won't rehash here). The 6e1 and 6e2 rulebooks were released as POD a couple of years ago, and then promptly disappeared from DTRPG because the interior text was having problems with the greyscale and whatnot. They had to re-work them to get them right, and then re-released them a while back. I was tempted to get copies of each of those books for reference copies at the game table, but after what I've seen from Duke's review here, I'm not a little bit wary of what those books look like! Essentially, they've lost sales (to my) for several of several copies of their POD books because of how amazingly bad the 4e book is! I'd think, in all good conscience, they'd have to pull that POD and rework it because as it stands now, it's horrible. It looks like something I would have done with my first MS Paint program back in 1993 on my first homemade computer! Amateurish reprints of old titles have their place I guess, but not when they look so horrible that a nostalgic collector can't even enjoy the cover, let alone read the text inside. Really, PDFs are how we can "collect" titles these days. POD from a PDF shouldn't be that complicated, but somehow they've found a way to screw it up. Computers are much more sophisticated these days, guys, and the tools they offer for producing good books are widely available to people. Expectations are much higher these days, as they should be. As with many other things, DOJ needs to wake up to the 21st Century with their business model. *Ok, quarantine-induced rant over* Thanks @Duke Bushido!
  17. I seem to remember reading something about Champions Now being included in the Hall. But as you say, it goes pretty much against everything Ron is concerned with in his game.
  18. How about something simple like Autofire, maybe with Penalty Skill Levels to reduce the cumulative penalties to hit p to a certain extent? Just spitballing here . . . if it hits I'll fire another . . . .
  19. How about Teleport, Usable On Others, Must pass through intervening space? There is a "Position Shift" adder for Teleport, but it's really for getting up after a fall, etc., but it seems like maybe you can work with this as well to "shift" someone one hex away. Just another idea.
  20. I love the layout. I also love how simple it is when you remove the powers from the character sheet.
  21. Brilliant! You beat me to my next question. Thanks again.
  22. Hi Simon, Quick question about custom templates. I was looking at the downloads page for the built-in templates for 6e, and the documentation says "Remember to always extend Main.hdt or Main6E.hdt and not replace!" I see that the custom templates I've saved before actually extend the "builtIn.Main6E.hdt" (and not "Main6E.hdt"). So am I correct in assuming that the custom template is actually extending the built-in Main6e template in the HD6.jar file, and not a copy of the Main6E file that I save in my directory with other HD files? Thanks in advance. I've never paid attention to this before when I've done other templates. I've only ever saved an existing template under a new name after I modify it in HD, and have never started from scratch with the default Main6e.hdt file and modified it in a text editor. I'm sure this is a pretty obvious question, but I want to make sure before I get to far into fiddling with a new template.
  23. This is actually something I've considered doing before, but more like an entire party of teenagers setting out on their own, etc. etc. The things that held me back are similar to what you're concerns are. I'll offer a few of the ideas I had to maybe help you out. Take 'em or leave 'em as you wish! The Medieval world had a robust apprenticing system in trades and whatnot. Parents gave up their children willingly in order to learn a trade and become productive adults (squire, apprentice for a trade, shopkeeper's assistant/trainee, etc.) Keep in mind that adulthood began at a much younger age, so it's not so strange for a teenager to be out on his own. In fantasy, this may amount to a child who shows promise being sent to apprentice with a wizard. If you have another wizard in your party, perhaps he'd like to take on the mentoring role. So the parents have sent the child off willingly to learn. If there's no mentor, maybe they've sent the child with the party with the promise to make sure he gets to [name of school redacted to protect the innocent] in order to learn properly. Maybe the parents are too poor to support the child and have to send him off with someone else who can afford to care for the child while also training the child. Maybe the child is a runaway who managed to glom onto the party, and now they can't get rid of him. Most importantly, it's going to require you to sit down at Session 0 with your players and see who and how all these things will interact. Things to consider and discuss with your players: The child should have Complications galore built into the character: distinctive feature (young person, easily identified and hard to conceal), reduced Characteristics based on one of the templates offered, a tendency to throw tantrums or act irrationally because of youth, defies authority, is always trying to "prove himself" to the adults, and the list goes on. Complications are where you can try to encourage some of the character's role playing. Spells will most likely have limited power that can grow rapidly over time. Perhaps your player will have limited versions of spells that can improve with use. Most likely the spells will also have a reduced activation roll, or have side effects, that can eventually be bought off with XP as he grows. Maybe the youngster will gain XP at a faster rate than the other players for a while as he learns and grows more dramatically than the adults. "Hey, I didn't know I could make a fire spell explode like that! Cool!" and then add a new spell to his list. The other players should most definitely step up and take Complications to account for a youth in their party. Maybe not all of them, but someone should take on the role of the mentor or protector, perhaps another player actually hates kids and take a Complication to pick on him that comes up every once in a while, and so on. The more you can get the characters to overlap with their Complications, the more likely the role playing will be reinforced in the group. So much good material can come from this! So much good material can come from this. As you suggest, Ragitsu, have a conversation and let the group decide how these parts will interact. The more you can get the characters to overlap with their Complications, the less you'll have to "hand wave" the problems away, and the more you can hopefully encourage some good role playing material. I was once in a one-shot at a convention, and one of the characters was a teenage girl super. The player who took her played that to the hilt! She was on her phone all the time, and was so ironic all the time, and started half her comments with "OMG . . ." and stuff like that. The role playing was amazing, and was only barely built into the character as a suggestion. If you can get your group to buy into the concept, it could be a ton of fun! Hope this helps.
  24. So, how does one go about making one's own? I think I read something briefly about a Unity something or other and 3d renditions . . . or something like that. Is that what we're talking about here? If so, is it something I can learn?
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