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Everything posted by Talon

  1. The more you tie to real-world history the harder this is. If you focus action on the main city and use everything else as backdrop (or for exotic locale adventures) then it's less of an issue. If your character histories are intertwined with real world events, then you need to spend a lot more time thinking about this. I had a campaign where it became a running gag that not only was the city location unspecified, there was no map of the city (because I was too lazy^H^H^H^Hbusy to create one).
  2. Make the Charge Recoverable so the character can meditate again if Stunned. Also, the Extra Time should be -1 1/2 since it's for a Constant/Persistent Power that only requires Extra Time to activate.
  3. Westworld is pretty much about Automata becoming normal characters. The hosts are sophisticated enough, however, that the Hero Automata rules seem too simplistic (e.g., the # of commands seems too limiting). I'd buy them as normal characters with a Multipower containing Takes No Stun and other relevant Automaton powers (yes yes, special powers, GM's permission!) and heightened defenses. Turning the settings goes from normal human defenses through higher than normal defenses all the way to ignores anything but BODY. I'd also define a separate class of minds and set up a system for using Mental Powers to simulate computer control of hosts; normal hosts would be low EGO and probably have a Vulnerability to all such effects, ranging up to high EGO and lots of Mental Defense for certain characters. (Redefine these attacks as working via radio sense group rather than mental, etc.) Changing settings to stats (STR, INT, etc.) would probably just be a house rule, requiring a set level of Mental Power effect to activate. And another house rule to handle their free will (Complication ranging from Phys Lim: must follow orders up to normal character Psych Lims as appropriate). At some point a character with physical access and the right skills can reset a host so there's always the possibility of being changed back.
  4. I received an "undefined" error loading a character from Dropbox, but the same file loaded successfully from Google Drive. It's a nice app - my initial impression is that navigation can be a bit tricky (I keep wanting to swipe to go back).
  5. Definitely focus on the excellent general GMing tips that people are posting. Being a good GM is secondary to system specific stuff. That said, here's some system specific stuff. Have an "intro to the system" session with just a combat. Use stock characters from one of the books so you don't lose time making characters. This will give everyone a sense of the system and help when it's time to make characters. Be prepared to rewrite and rebalance characters once the game starts. It's very common to have someone come out too powerful or too weak. Players should understand that the goal is to have fun, and unbalanced characters are not fun. Using a DEX chart (all PCs and NPCs listed in DEX order, with a column for each SPD segment) helps a tremendous amount of combat. You can prepare one ahead of time or just write it out as needed. And one last sorta system-specific item: if there's a rules question, sometimes it's better to make a quick ruling during the game and then revisit it afterward. A wrong answer that keeps the game flowing can be better than 30 minutes of hunting for the right rule.
  6. I would definitely use Side Effect, and have the Side Effect effectively be points that add to a Summon. When there are enough points for the Summon, the monster appears. I would *not* expose all of this to the player - all they need to know is that there's a side effect, and if you are feeling nice you can tell them what the result is. Or they can find out the hard way! If the players try to manipulate the Disadvantage (say, by drawing blood out of combat to get the monster to show up), I would respond by varying the time required to summon, increasing the power level of the monster each time it is summoned, or something more sinister. (Maybe a much more powerful demon senses all this blood magic and takes an interest...) In the end, what matters is the overall impact on the PC and the value of the Disadvantage.
  7. True, and I may not use the hit location rules themselves (except for called shots which I find thematic). But my real question is how to do the STUN multiplier. d6-1 and 1-3 are too flat. I'm probably going to be making the case for whipping up some custom dice. d(0,0,1,1,1,2) + 1d6 BODY + 1 is pretty good IMO.
  8. d3+1 has a separate issue, which is that the average of 3 means KAs do the same STUN as normal attacks, which makes normal attacks strictly worse (assuming you don't mind killing opponents). My design goal, which the hit location table realizes, is that normal attacks should kill less and do more STUN on average, while KAs kill more and do less STUN on average but with a flatter distribution. Take a reasonably armored character: 6 PD, 6 DEF armor, 15 CON, facing a dagger armored opponent (1d6). No BODY is going to be done. A x3 multiplier means no more than 6 STUN and no chance of being Stunned. A x4 multiplier means up to 12 STUN and no chance of being Stunned. A x5 modifier means up to 18 STUN and a small chance of being stunned. If x5 happens too often that's a problem, but if it's once in a while then it gives them something to worry about. In my experience (which is mostly a while ago), it's good to have that concern.
  9. I'm writing a Fantasy Hero game for a convention, which means that run time is a consideration. I want to use the mechanics that provide the right feel but which don't slow the game down. It is likely that some players will be unfamiliar with the Hero System so everything needs to be as streamlined as possible. In my experience, the Hit Location table provides an excellent mathematical distribution of STUN damage, but the time required is significant. An extra 3d6 roll, refer to a chart, then go back to the damage roll and multiply. It's not hard, but in a four hour con game with 6+ players it will add a noticeable amount of time. On the flip side, the standard 1-3 multiplier is simple but too low - without the possibility for higher STUN results, smaller fantasy weapons are not worth using. (For the old-school out there, d6-1 gets the higher STUN results but way too often). I have some crazy ideas using custom d6, but I'm wondering if other people have any ideas.
  10. A SPD 6 character starts a Haymaker in Segment 12. Can they Abort in Segment 12? Can they Abort in Segment 1 before the Haymaker lands? Can they Abort in Segment 1 after the Haymaker lands? In all cases, if so, do they lose their next Segment (segment 2)?
  11. 6E2 12 gives a +1 modifier for taking a 1/2 Phase to look (sight PER roll). 6E2 23 says that perceiving an enemy with a Nontargeting sense is a 1/2 Phase. There's no other mention that I see. I would conclude for this that it's a 0 Phase action by the rules as written. There is probably a question in the official questions page on this - if not you can add one. Personally, I allow PER rolls as 0 Phase actions, but a 1/2 Phase PER roll will get you a lot more (the thinking being that combat is a frantic affair). EDIT: See 6E12 18 under "Half Phase actions", and this post: http://www.herogames.com/forums/topic/83816-how-long-for-a-perception-roll/?hl=perception. "Most PER Rolls" take a 1/2 Phase according to the rules.
  12. I would use the Absolute Effect rule and ask your GM for a threshold - when you buy enough Unusual Senses, the power is assumed to cover all of them. Note that a similar rule applies to Invisibility (see 6E1 209) since it's a Sense-Affecting Power.
  13. Invisibility implies that nothing is perceived. Imagine an NPC with Sense Life Force, Targeting and no other senses. Invisibility means the NPC cannot sense this character at all even at the level of "normal human life force". With Shape Shift the character could assume the life force of a normal human; this NPC would then target and perceive them like any other character. I'm not sure I would put any Limitation on Shape Shift - as you describe it, the power would only apply to Unusual Senses, so just buy it for that Sense Group. I suppose if the character had weird emanations you would need to buy it for IR/UV, then you might have some sort of Limitation to make it not apply to normal sight.
  14. For both of these I would want a solid special effect - interesting game mechanics, I want to know how it's being applied! "Doesn't affect Targeting" seems like a -1 for Darkness at most, given that it stops Flash (plus a bunch of sense modifiers that the character presumably doesn't have). For Invisibility I agree it's worth more, though in a game where there's a lot of the modifiers that it stops, the value might go down. I agree that Shape Shift might be a better way to do this than Invisibility, depending on the special effect. "Only out of band senses"...probably in the -1 range. It's rare for characters to only have out of band senses, so I might rate it even higher depending on the campaign.
  15. In general, damage in Hero costs 3ish points per DC, with the caveat that the Active cost will be 5 - you always "get something" with the damage: STR: lifting Blast: range, spreading Hand Attack: the ability to apply the Hand Attack limitation One nice way to clean this up (and one I wish I had thought of earlier, though maybe someone else did) would be to change Hand Attack to be Ranged by default, so you have a nice parallelism: Blast: range and spreading Hand Attack: range and adds to STR Add No Range and you are good to go. (Yes, this goes back to the 5E value for the Hand Attack limitation.) You could then do something similar for KAs: RKA: range and spreading [add spreading as an option to RKAs] HKA: range and adds to STR Now HKAs are cheaper than STR, so the value proposition is a little better. This does make HKAs cheaper and RKAs slightly better, but given the STUNx reduction in 6E that's not a bad thing.
  16. The difference is between a particular special effect (muscle powered weapons) which has a lot of ways of adding damage, and more or less everything else which does not. Energy is a shorthand way of looking at this. Non-muscle powered physical weapons also fall into the latter category, while things like thrown knives or bows can fall into the former. (Energy swords can also fall into muscle powered, but outside of me abusing that at the GenCon Kumite it doesn't show up much. ) Strength doesn't add to non-muscle damage. Velocity doesn't add to non-muscle damage. Martial arts don't add to non-muscle damage. (Exception for ranged martial arts, which are rare in my experience. Perhaps I am a fogie.) As a GM, I have to take all of the above when judging the power level of a character. Someone with 20 STR, a 4d6 Hand Attack, and the Offensive Strike maneuver is up there with a 12d6EB. If they wanted a 30 STR and it's a 12DC campaign I might have to say no. Why is this? Because it's such a strong special effect that we can't "let it go" and insist on paying for the mechanic.
  17. You have two pricing models, one for where it "makes sense" for various things to add together (strength / HKA / Extra DCs, etc.), one where it doesn't (energy). Trying to make those models match is hard and requires bringing in assumptions (like assuming energy characters will have Multipowers). Ideally, the starting point would be the same for both - but this means giving up on STR adding to physical damage, which is a hard thing to give up.
  18. If a character Aborts and is then Stunned, how many Phases do they lose (and, though it probably matters less, which comes first)?
  19. If two or more character launch Haymakers in the same Segment, in what order do they go off in the following Segment?
  20. Re: THE HERO SYSTEM EQUIPMENT GUIDE -- What Would *You* Like To See? Somehow I feel like a lot of the ancient vs. modern weaponry distinction lies not so much in damage, but in other factors (training, cost, reliability, rate of fire, etc.).
  21. Re: THE HERO SYSTEM EQUIPMENT GUIDE -- What Would *You* Like To See? What I would like to see: Don't ignore equipment just because it doesn't need a writeup. This isn't to say that you need to include every last possible item, but focus on what might get used in an RPG (whether or not it needs a writeup). My goal for this book would be to hand it to players in a campaign and say "stuff from genre X is available to you". Genres that use equipment are often concerned with cost, encumbrance, concealment, ease of repair, etc. The more information that exists on those types of things, the better. For weapons, the more balanced options that are available, the better. If one gun from a genre does more damage, it will get used unless there are drawbacks. In the "Keep on dreaming" department, HD support for weapons (so you could print weapon attacks like you print maneuvers, where the OCV, RMod, etc. modifiers are calculated in with the character's base CV)...
  22. Re: Portals I used this concept for a Wildcards-based campaign...an AOE Continuous UAA 1 hex Teleport that teleports you straight up...until the character turns it off. The character was named "Splat". In a game like that where powers were on the unbalanced side to start with it was OK (and for an NPC)...in most games, I would make you pay for the resulting damage as an attack (and apply campaign limits, etc.).
  23. Re: Overall Penalty Skill Levels - Discuss Are Maneuver CV penalties counted? If so, this could be a -0 if the character relies on Offensive Strike, Grab, Move By, etc.
  24. Re: Overall Penalty Skill Levels - Discuss It seems like most concepts (other than "All Odds are 50/50 Man") would have a hard time justifying the negation of ALL penalties...but given such a concept, Overall Levels with a Limitation (most likely in the -1/4 to -1/2 range) would be the way to go.
  25. Re: Zero Information I had a campaign idea, never executed, where the players would merely describe their characters in a paragraph -- nothing specific, just general information about the character. Then, the GM would create the characters and the campaign would start... ...and it would be a Watership Down campaign.
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