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assault

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  1. assault

    The Old Guard

    Sure. No Marvel hero has ever saved the world from Galactus, have they? None of them have ever zipped around space on a surfboard. None of them is a Thunder God, the Sorceror Supreme, or the ruler of Atlantis. No, they are all far too down to earth for all that. This is all a bit silly. Flagsuits and non-powered detectives are just as much part of the "mythology" of comic books as their more powerful counterparts. Mythology is about Heroes as well as Gods, Giants and Titans. For every Hercules, there is an Odysseus as well. For every Great Warrior, there is a Trickster, and so on. Shrug. This is a game of definitions, so I'll stop before it gets sillier. Alan
  2. Bah! The only reason I started playing Champions in early '82, rather than '81, was that it wasn't available on this side of the world then! I started playing Traveller in 1979, and D&D in 1980. I'd have started several years earlier, except living in a provincial city in Queensland in the '70s didn't give you a lot of access to games stores. All I could do was look at ads, read reviews, and drool... Alan
  3. Some possibilities: * The Yakuza * Corporations had an Evil Japanese Corporation (Yoshida? or something like that) * The IHA - using human assassins against mutie scum. * Dr Destroyer (because he can) * Foxbat (because Ninjas are Totally Awesome) *The Japanese government of World War II, sending agents through time in order to stave off their looming defeat. The last would be the one I would personally use. It just popped into my head while I was writing this post. Thanks for inspiring me! Alan
  4. Re: So I started a new campaign... Well, on the "Western" front, there wasn't much ground combat happening in 1942. A few commando raids, partisan operations, and the raid on Dieppe in August was about it. There was quite a bit of stuff happening on the Eastern front, North Africa, and so on. Of course, that gives you lots of options! Supers are pretty much commandoes - so raids and defence against Axis raids are all quite viable. Drop them into France, Italy, Norway, Greece or somewhere... Alternatively, just because Malta wasn't invaded historically doesn't mean it couldn't have happened. Drop some Paras and Axis supers on it, and stand back. Alternatively, land them by submarine. For that matter, you could land them in the UK! Other possibilities: there were neutral countries like Turkey, Spain, Portugal and Ireland. Even better, though, would be Vichy North Africa. You know, places like ***Casablanca***. This would work better in 1941 though, before the US entered the war. Oh well, next time. At least you wouldn't have to worry about what the soundtrack would be, and you would have a lot of predesigned NPCs. Alan
  5. Re: The Ultimate Skill-based Superhero He would need at least 5, or preferably 6 Speed. A 23 or 26 Dex would be nice. Numbers like this are possible within liberal interpretations of normal characteristics. Having some body armour in his "minor" equipment is a really good idea. Even a character that relies on "not getting hit" will get hit sometimes, and in those circumstances, not dying is good. A lot of the answer really depends on the power levels of the other superheroes. Using Dex and Spd as an example, I've seen 250 point characters that were perfectly fine with 20 Dex and 5 Speed. Unfortunately, I don't think that this would be adequate for 350 point characters. Combat skill levels are recommended, too. Hmm. Frankly, I can't really say much else without knowing what the other characters are like. I have been known to use characters that only had "a single" power (actually usually a multipower), and were otherwise "normal". You would probably want your character to be able to beat them in combat if they weren't using their powers. Essentially, your character will be more or less a martial artist, even if she/he uses weapons and has some armour. He/she will need to be in that ballpark for the campaign's level of power. The main thing is: DO NOT WORRY TOO MUCH about keeping your characteristics "normal". This is especially true of Dex and Speed. Most others can be kept at or near "normal" levels. Alan
  6. Re: 3 ideas Hmm. Well, one of my Heroclix is the Joker... We may have a winner. However, everyone should keep coming up with ideas - I might want to use my lovely toys more than once! I was thinking about a mastermind pulling a brain transfer at some point - I'm a bit of a fan of the Ultra-Humanite. Keep up the good work! Alan
  7. OK, I've got a few Heroclix miniatures, and six plastic dinosaurs - bigger than velociraptors, but smaller than tyrannosaurs. "Just right", in other words. All I need is a scenario... Any ideas? Subtlety is not required. I suppose I could dig out a few civilians, if necessary. They wouldn't be in quite the right scale, but who cares? Alan
  8. This is why his initial conquest needs to be "voluntary" (or rather, I suspect, probably "stealthy"). He can't afford to be fighting the population of the nations he rules. On the other hand, he can't stand up to a direct offensive launched by developed nations either. He has to duck such blows, and put them on the defensive instead. This would only work if he has a reasonable degree of popular support - which he is perfectly capable of losing! In fact, this is probably the point where PC heroes could intervene, exposing the manipulation he engaged in to gain his initial control. Of course, he also has the option of the more traditional WMD route. It's entirely genre standard for a mastermind to threaten the world with a super-weapon, blah blah blah. In fact, Dr Destroyer's first appearance in "The Island of Dr Destroyer" was precisely in this role. For that reason, I would be a little careful assuming he already has WMDs: he is too likely to attempt to use them in the traditional extortionist manner. But, of course, that raises the question of how did he destroy Detroit. To be perfectly frank, I'm not incredibly impressed by the current version of DD. He's actually a bit too much for my tastes. But I suppose he has to be a match for every theoretically playable PC group. The main disagreement in this thread has really been between "real world" and "genre" simulation. I'm a genre simulator, of course. Part of this, aside from sheer taste, is that I have a rather cynical view of attempts to model the "real world", since such models tend to reflect the prejudices of the designer. And frankly, I'm a very serious offender in this area myself. I've also taken careful note of attempts to be "relevant", like the good old "Supersons" saga, which combines risible Silver Age silliness with bizarre "generation gap" plotlines. It was a wonderful case of a failed attempt to move from the Silver Age to the Bronze Age. At the same time, however, I am a very great fan of the Green Arrow/Green Lantern stories of more or less the same period, which were marvellous pieces of early Bronze Age work. What I am getting at, I suppose, is that trying to be too "realistic" can often simply lead to clowning, and frankly doesn't even make stuff particularly fun. Hmm. Perhaps a "seanbaby" game might be a good idea: four-colour camp with a "realistic" attitude... Time to break out my Heroclix miniatures and ***Toy Dinosaurs***. You can't not have fun with Toy Dinosaurs. Alan
  9. That's OK, Louisville can be renamed Springfield. Hmm. Well, there are a couple of Real World London's out there, not to mention at least two Perths, and a bunch of others. There's even a town named Texas a little way down the road from here. So I guess duplication is OK. Still, it does cause a few problems. I'll see if I can think of a better alternative Brisbane, but, of course, River City does already have a pedigree of sorts. For what it is worth, Toowoomba is known as the Garden City. It's original name was Drayton Swamp. Drayton was the original town, which is now a suburb. A dray is/was a kind of very large wagon drawn by bullock teams. They were the pre-railway freight movers of choice around these parts. The swamp has long since been drained, but the bitter, twisted and cynical have expressed opinions to the contrary. There was once a local independent publication called Frogtown. But none of that helps with Brisvegas. Oops. Well, yes, Brissie is sometimes referred to as Brisvegas. The name became especially popular during the late '80s, when it was demonstrated that Brissie had a thriving illegal gambling industry. Now there are various forms of legal gambling all over the place. But, unfortunately, I still can't quite see Brisvegas as the "official" name of a Champions Universe city. Oh, and Brisbane is pronounced "Brisben". Calling it "Brisbayne" tends to mark you off as a dumbyankee. Melbourne is pronounced "Melben" too, not "Melborn". And then there's Wagga Wagga. Alan
  10. The point is that that cuts both ways. Incidentally, there are other "western" moralities than the "Christian" one too. Just for a laugh: it's entirely possible to not consider human life to possess intrinsic value without being a serial killer or a sociopath. Alan
  11. Sure. So the question becomes: why does the Destroyer _want_ the US to nuke Nairobi? Some aspects of the Master Plan are obvious enough: for example, VIPER's headquarters are in West Africa, and dragging the US into the area would cause conflict between two of Destroyer's most serious rivals. The whole thing may actually be fairly simple: to create a global war pitting the Third World against the First World. This would, of course, be a war fought between superbeings, as well as between armies. Dr Destroyer would, of course, participate in this to the extent that he deems convenient, ensuring the balance of power tips the way he wants it to. Alan
  12. You can't be paying attention to the news at the moment. Half the US military is sitting around in Iraq surrounded by people who hate them and are at least sporadically trying to kill them. In Afghanistan, the Taliban is gradually making a comeback. Now, add Dr Destroyer's 20,000 strong force to this mix: detachments of US troops would be getting overwhelmed and destroyed on a daily basis. The Destroyer's forces wouldn't be sitting around waiting to be chewed up in a stand-up fight - they would be using hit and run tactics against an opponent that has to disperse its forces to hold large swathes of hostile territory. Of course, the logistics of all this is another matter. Alan
  13. On the other hand, there are moralities other than the Christian(/Islamic/Jewish/whatever) one. This tends to be obscured in Western societies, where there is this tendency to assume that these values are universal. They aren't. Alan
  14. I was considering Rafael Cortez, Muerte's younger brother. He made his money legitimately, first as the timber king of the Amazon jungles, then as the cattle king of the Amazon plains. His only known connection to his brother's activities is that some of his security personnel may once have been agents of Terror Inc. Recently, Giganto seems to have fixated on him. Cortez has rather reluctantly taken him in. He is only just beginning to suspect that something isn't quite right: the man-monster seems to engage in curiously intelligent but mysterious behaviour at night time... Another possibility would be a New Zealander working for ARGENT or VIPER. Being far enough away from the power centres of these agencies might give her the opportunity to set up on her own behalf. The split might not yet be open. Alan
  15. Why yes! However did you guess? In fact, of course, we have a _much_ broader selection of tunes than that. One of the disadvantages of being superheroes in a comparatively small city is having a lot of time on your hands. Recording show tunes is just one of the ways of dealing with this problem... Alan
  16. Yeah. It's a pain, isn't it? Alan
  17. My understanding of all this is that doctrines like predestination are good things for groups that consider themselves to be the chosen people (members of the true church, etc). It gives you strength to have destiny on your side. There is a thick strand of Calvinism in the secular ideology of the US, by the way. It has both positive and negative aspects. The negative one is the tendency to be indifferent or hostile to the poor, who after all aren't the chosen ones, are lazy, and so on... Alan
  18. Yes, and it's pretty absurd that people can leap tall buildings at a single bound, too. You can play plenty of other genres with the Hero System, if superheroes aren't to your taste... Alan
  19. This links up with the Dr Destroyer in the UN thread: it's easier to mind control / replace / generally mess with Third World governments than ones that can afford lots of telepaths and whatnot. Once you get to places like Nauru and Kiribati, it's just a matter of which mind controller is running the place this week. That is, unless Australia and New Zealand are bankrolling their psionic security... Hmm, now there's a game... Alan
  20. Well said. The Master Plan will always be more subtle than what is on the surface. This, incidentally, ensures that petty objections as to the impossibility/unlikeliness of the Master Plan are irrelevent. Third World leaders won't play along? Replace them with robots! Rogue supers will try to kill you? Replace _yourself_ with robots! Gee, robots can solve a lot of problems, can't they? Maybe Mechanon has a point... Of course DD will treat his subjects well - that's part of a god's duties. The wrath and smiting is another part. Alan
  21. Oh. I'd forgotten that Ogre's origin had been retconned. That does it: ARGENT is the main villainous agency in my campaign now. VIPER is out. (Context: this is a very simple campaign world, intended to "grow outward" from the PCs.) Alan
  22. Well, to be honest, all I have seen so far is testimonies to the brilliance of the Doctor's plan. A few android duplicates in the right place, and people start saying things that boil down to "we had to destroy civilisation in order to save it." What I really want to know is: is Dr D really behind this, or is it Mechanon? After all, the extinction of humanity does seem to be on the agenda. Of course, a lot of the problem is that most of us aren't really world-conquering geniuses. Apparently this can make comprehending the Master Plan a little difficult. Alan
  23. This gave me a flash of the 'Senior Partners' from 'Angel'. Yes, this is definitely the way to go. The Council of Scientists idea is very four-colour, but it's been done to death. Alan
  24. It certainly is. It inspired me to finish writing up my 350 point version of Ultra Man, the hero I would want to play in this kind of game. (A cross between Ultra Boy and Superman, of course.) This is when I should be doing a bunch of other things, including writing up villains for a game I am planning. I don't know that my game would have room for such hugely world-changing events, at least at first. Then again, on a smaller scale... Something like this would be a good way of getting players thinking, arguing, and kicking some serious bottom. Getting back to the actual scenario in question: of course, if one supervillain takeover succeeds, it could well lead to others. In addition, if warfare starts to become superpowered, superheroes might start becoming seen as more legitimate rules of more or less democratic states as well. Just think, what if Invictus and Borealis were elected to lead the US and Canada respectively through this kind of desperate crisis? Presumably they would sort out their differences in order to unite against Dr D. Memo to Steve and Darren: please bring back Invictus and Borealis! Especially since Golden Avenger Kaufman is out of the way. On the other hand, is Kaufman dead? If he's just retired, he might go into politics... That would be evil, wouldn't it? Anyway, a world where rival supers start ruling norms on a large scale would certainly be... interesting... It could get very Iron Age very quickly. And then it could get very Stone Age. Oh yeah. It works for me. Alan
  25. Supreme Silver Scientist? No offence, but Eww! Personally, I would treat ARGENT as an oligarchy, without a single supreme leader. Instead, I would have a council, or board - 7 is a fairly traditional number of members - with each member being notionally equal in power. The chairperson of the council might have some degree of executive authority, but probably less than that of someone like the Supreme Serpent of VIPER. Paradoxically, of course, such an organisation would be more, rather than less, centralised than that of VIPER. Presumably almost all of ARGENT's operations would involve fronts and cutouts to preserve security. So: ARGENT's leaders would be members of the Board, or Council. If you want to talk up the Science! aspects of it, it could be The Council of Scientists, while if you want to emphasise the corporate aspects, it would be more like a corporate board. The executive leader could be the "Chief Scientist", the "Chairman" or simply "Number One". More grandiose titles could be adopted later, as ARGENT starts to become more like VIPER. Hmm. Actually I suspect I prefer ARGENT to VIPER... I probably should have a good look at the organisations I want in the game-world I am designing... Alan
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