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Dragonfly

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  • Birthday 12/12/1969

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  1. Re: Champions 1st edition These are all awesome ideas! I'd probably steal at least half of them if I were still running that Classic Champions campaign. :-) In my campaign Lirby Koo was working with VIPER, but only to get revenge on UNTIL for killing his only son in a raid on one of his bases back in the day. Cheers! Dragonfly
  2. Re: Champions 1st edition Howdy fellas! A couple of years ago I ran a Classic Champions campaign, set in the 1980s. I basically ran The VIPER's Nest, weaving in various villain origins (Ogre, Mechanon, Arrowhead) and replaced The Champions with the PC group. Here is the entire campaign write-up, with pictures no less. :-) http://classic-champions.blogspot.com/ Best, Dragonfly
  3. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Oh, I know they would be. Most games I play these days, like SUPERS! and BASH! have NO speed stat. In these games, most characters have one panel to act. There are a few exceptions, like Super Speed, which grant an extra panel here or there, but there isn't a SPD stat that places superheroes too far off from either each other OR from the mooks in the game. I just don't like playing Champions like that. As for the comment about importance - that's tricky. Are we going to say that my SPD 6 Martial Artist is a more important character than my SPD 4 Brick? That's pretty stiff for a roleplaying game. If you wanted to emulate SPD as it seems to work in the comics, you'd have to modify a character's speed per story or issue, as their rate of appearance per comic varies depending on whether their subplots are being explored that issue or not. That's a pretty cool idea, but Champions isn't that kind of game. I guess you could do it, though. Characters get a free +1 or +2 SPD for an adventure if it features their story. Interesting! As to speedsters having slow speeds - yeah, some individual character concepts would call for that. A teenage speedster who is still in his adolescent fog might be able to run at the speed of sound, but be kind of slow to process information. That might qualify him for a SPD 4 or 5 instead of 6 or 7. The particulars will always getcha, and I'm not suggesting that there be a standard SPD for speedsters. IN GENERAL, however, Speedsters and Martial Artists probably merit a high SPD stat MORE OFTEN than bricks or blasters. That's not particularly controversial, actually. Most Champions products have adhered to that logic over the years. For my particular setting I'm more interested in keeping the relative difference between archetypes that already exists, but taking them all down a notch or two so they are closer (not equal with) mundane people in the world. Cheers! Dragonfly
  4. Re: Alternate Benchmarks That sounds about right to me! :-) Cheers! Dragonfly
  5. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Well, a SPD 7 has SOMETHING to do with speesters, as speedsters tend to have good reaction times as a matter of concept. I'm not saying that speesters are the ONLY class that merit high (or higher) speed scores. I was just using them as an example of a character type for which high speed scores generally make sense. The stuff you guys are talking about, like balancing DC's, CV's, Defenses, etc. is of less concern for me, generally speaking. Don't get me wrong - I think it's fine, cool, and in some cases necessary to design characters with an eye for such things, but it's never been necessary in our group, and we've always used benchmarks of the type that I'm proposing here. Different strokes for different folks! Cheers! Dragonfly
  6. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Howdy Tasha, Trust me, your feedback helps - particularly the stuff about how 6E changed play. That's very interesting to me. I hear what you are saying with regards to benchmark tables like the ones I proposed above, and totally agree that someone could misunderstand what, for instance, is meant by "superheroic". At some point, I'm going to write a little flavor text with examples to correct such issues for a general audience. In my own group, however, I'm able to manage that stuff with a little bit of dialogue. I just clearly explain what the bemchmarks mean, and it works. Your point about the culture of the gaming group making a difference is good too. I've been fortunate enough to play with essentially the same group for all my years of gaming, and they are exemplary role-players, with very little power-gaming tendencies. Perhaps that's why such tables have worked so well for me in the past. BTW, I didn't mean to suggest that your gaming style was somehow lesser than mine when I made the comment about concept vs. mechanics. First, I don't see a mechanics approach as being lesser than what I do (just different), and second I apologize if I assumed the wrong thing about your approach. No harm intended, and thanks a ton for your feedback. Cheers! Dragonfly
  7. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Howdy Tasha, That's interesting info on how 6th Edition has changed player behavior (bringing down DEXs, etc.). I own, but never played, 6th Edition, so that's something that is totally new territory for me. I'm actually not too concerned about calibrating power levels. I've been playing the game since 1982, so I'm an old hand at knowning how values stack up against each other. The benchmarks, however, are useful to me because of the way I approach campaign and character design. For me, it's always concept first and mechanics second. I don't want my players (or myself) assigning 7 speed because it's good in combat. I want them assigning a 7 speed because they are making a speedster. My experience with Champions of old is that a lack of benchmarks and guidelines led to bloat and inconsistencies within campaigns. I'm not really interested in standardizing HERO System stats. That should be left up to individual GMs and their individual campaigns. My players, however, have always found benchmark tables useful for making sense of the numbers conceptually (not mechanically). Cheers! Dragonfly
  8. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Howdy Bigbywolf! You are absolutely right. I haven't updated the OP, but that's exactly what I decided to do for SPD. 1=weak 2=average 3=above average 4=exceptional 5=peak human 6=superhuman 7=world class superhuman 8=legendary superhuman I'm honestly not certain why I went so high on my first draft. Cheers, Dragonfly
  9. Re: [New Product] Champions Complete Hi Derek! I'm so excited to see this product in print! I just wanted to express that directly to you! I'm as interested in the accessibility of the writing and the overall tone of the book, as I am about having a more concise and streamlined set of rules. The style and tone of your posts alone suggest that I'm going to be a very happy customer! :-) Thanks for all the hard work, and for taking time to answer questions. Cheers! Dragonfly
  10. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Hi Christopher, Thanks for the thoughts. I hear what your saying, but here are a few things to consider: 1) The benchmark tables presented are really suggestions for scaling raw charactersitics - not final values as modified by powers, etc. I wasn't clear about this, so I totally understand your response. A character with a "Superhuman" physique might have a natural PD/ED of 20. He'd have a PD/ED 30, however, if he purchased +10 PD / +10 ED body armor. Once you factor in powers and other factors, your characters should be just as durable as they always have been. To be honest, I'm more concerned with characters at the higher superheroic levels being TOO durable, rather than too fragile. [This concern stems from lower SPD scores, higher REC scores, and more STUN at the World Class and Legendary superheroic levels.] 2) Even when we're talking about raw characteristics, without powers being factored in, these benchmarks don't make characters universally more vulnerable. I don't have his 6E stats, but back in the old days Grond would knock himself out in FOUR punches, rather than six or ten. To be honest, I don't think the benchmarks were intentionally designed with damage and defense values in mind. On those terms, they are sort of all over the place. What mine attempt to do is provide some consistency across levels. In some cases, characters become a bit more durable (Average Joe/Stan, Grond), in other cases, they become a tad more vulnerable (Legendary Joe/Stan). Again, powers, martial arts, and other factors will season these bases to taste. 3) I don't like using Damage Reduction as a means of enforcing narrative elements. In otherwords, I would only give a villain Damage Reduction if his power concept called for it. I wouldn't give a villain Damage Reduction simply because he is meant to fight the whole group. I'm not sure that you do this either, but your comments implied that you might. There's nothing wrong with doing that, of course. It's just not the way I roll, and it's not the way my players want me to roll. That being said, some characters DO merit it, and I'd factor that into the character design. I might, for instance, give Grond Damage Reduction. If I did that, I would probably account for that in the amount of STUN I gave him, maybe bringing it down significantly. Again, these are just factors to consider. I'm not entirely sold on my own benchmarks yet. They'll require some playtesting before I decide if I'm going to employ them. Maybe I'll post some characters and some samples of combat when I get the chance. Best, Dragonfly
  11. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Hey, Ninja-Bear. Yeah, I was thinking no action, but I was really just fumbling because I was stuck on SPD 1 being average, which I was wrong about, as you can see me realize above. As far as lowering stats for "normals" to bring heroes down to more reasonable levels - I totally agree. I was toying with that before I ran out of people to play Champions with back in 2000, and it seemed to work well for me too. Thanks for chiming in! Best, Dragonfly
  12. Re: Alternate Benchmarks Oh, man! You're right! I'm just rusty! It's been too many years since I play Champions. I forgot that the old formula was DEX/10+1! Okay, perfect. So my benchmarks WILL be Weak = SPD 1, Average = SPD 2, Above Average = SPD 3, Exceptional = SPD 4, Peak Human = SPD 5, Superhuman = SPD 6, World Class Superhuman = SPD 7, and Legendary Superhuman = SPD 8. Cosmic level characters can go higher, if it makes sense for their concept. And to think! I used to pride myself on my HERO-fu. How embrarassing! Cheers, Dragonfly
  13. Hey folks! The benchmarks included in the HERO System are fine, but they’ve never quite suited my style of play. I developed the following benchmarks for a campaign that I hope to run when Champions Complete is released. Two primary factors informed their design: 1) Setting Concerns: I’m trying to design a setting that has less of a gap between “normals” and “supers” than your standard Champions campaign. In this setting a lumbering stone man would probably have a DEX well-below that of your average high-school gymnast and well-trained soldier is likely to have a higher CON than a spritely, Tinker Bell style heroine. Mind you, “supers” in this campaign would still outstrip “normals” in all sorts of ways. A super-speedster would have the aforementioned gymnast licked in terms of DEX, and super-strong superheroes would still be able to bench press dump trucks. It’s just that a character whose only super-power is “eye beams” won’t automatically be faster, stronger and more durable than normal humans. They’ll probably rank with well-trained and fit “normals,” because superheroes are constantly training and engaged in strenuous activity, but they’ll be within that normal human range. I’m not saying that all superhero games should run this way. I just want this one to run this way. 2) Symmetry: This is, perhaps, a bit obsessive of me, but it always bothered me a little that the existing benchmarks didn’t “play the same” at each category – especially when it came to damage and resilience. Explanation: Take two “Average” characters built using the current benchmarks – Average Joe and Average Stan. They each have STR 10, PD 4, and STUN 20. Average Joe punches Average Stan repeatedly. Assuming an average roll of 3.5 on each of his damage dice, it would take Average Joe about six punches to knockout Average Stan. Now let’s compare Average Joe and Average Stan to two characters considered “Legendary” using the current benchmarks. Meet Legendary Joe and Legendary Stan. They each have STR 30, PD 15, and STUN 60. Legendary Joe punches Legendary Stan repeatedly. Assuming an average roll of 3.5 on each of his damage dice, it would take Legendary Joe about 10 punches to knockout Legendary Stan. That’s a four punch difference! The “Solution”: I thought it might be cool (or at least interesting) to design a set of benchmarks where a fight between Average Joe and Average Stan would be statistically equivalent to a fight between Legendary Joe and Legendary Stan. To do this, I made certain that every 1d6 of damage on the benchmark table was paired with 2 PD/ED, 2 REC, and 10 STUN. Anyway, this is what I came up with: Champs Bench by Eletarmion, on Flickr "STATS," BTW, means DEX, CON, INT, EGO, PRE, and BODY. I know, I know. Should be Primary Characteristics. So, what do you guys think? Any feedback? Two things I’m mildly concerned about: 1) SPD: Speed lacks symmetry. I kind of want to make SPD 1 “Weak” and proceed with +1 per category, making SPD 8 “Legendary Superhuman.” That, however, would make SPD 2 “Average,” which breaks HERO System tradition. Still, it’s something to consider. Most of the games I play these days don’t give "supers" any more attacks per round than "normals", and I do want “normals” to play a more significant role in this campaign. 2) END & STUN: These values get outrageous when you move into the superhuman realm. Still, it sort of makes sense. To be honest, in Champions of old I often had an issue with master villains running out of STUN rather quickly. For some reason, a 150 - 200 STUN Grond doesn’t seem so unreasonable. Well, I appreciate any thoughts you might have. Best, Dragonfly
  14. Campaign: Classic Champions (GRAND FINALE!) P.S. What's the easiest way to post HERO System versions of the PCs on here. I'm a bit tech-challenged.
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