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Doc Democracy

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Posts posted by Doc Democracy

  1. 6 minutes ago, Hugh Neilson said:

    I would say those strong views are an excellent reason for a "what is this game about?" discussion.  Is it a game where the dice rule over all?  Is it one featuring mechanics which permit players, the GM or both to override the dice on occasion?  Or is the GM expected to rule with an iron fist, fudge if considered appropriate or let the dice fall where they may, at his personal whim?


    This brings together this thread and the "what makes a complete game" thread.  Could you answer those questions for HERO as a whole? It would be MUCH more appropriate in the complete game books you were talking about because so many decisions about the game style would already have been made.  🙂



  2. 3 hours ago, Duke Bushido said:

    I would like a quick head count of the number of people here arguing about roleplaying is and is not, and which of you agreed that we have no need to put the "what is roleplaying" section into roleplaying games.



    Thank you, and good night, All.






    I would put my hand up. 


    I think that there is a useful purpose in showing folk what roleplaying is, I just don't think that it is a good use of rulebook pages.


    I would also say that, given the vehemence of the discussion here, you better be VERY careful about your description because there are extremely divergent and strongly held views on the matter.


    I still posit that more material, written and video, would be better.



  3. I think you are now heavily into Duplication.  It should be reasonably expensive as you want to multiply the number of actions you get in a round, all under your control, replicating your powers.


    as a GM I dislike one player being able to take more than seven or eight actions in a round, especially if everyone else only has three or four actions.  I even persuaded one of my players to take his SPD 12 speedster down to SPD 9 and only that far because I knew he was likely going to need 2 or 3 phases of recovering during a fight every turn.


    Duplication also ramps up the number of actions per turn which can seriously slowdown a game and make other players get much less spotlight during the game.




    PS:  the problem with floating locations is that they belong to the person using the power, not to others.  I might be inclined to charge more for locations that could be used by other characters.  Indeed, the additional utility might warrant substantial increases but would need to think hard about numbers for that.



  4. 3 hours ago, zslane said:

    the HERO System is not a good system for people who have never played TTRPGs before. It should not try to become a gateway game for that demographic.


    I would caveat that.  HERO is probably not for a group where NOONE has played TTRPGs before.  Given a good GM with HERO experience, willing to put in some groundwork, it is no worse than any other game.



  5. Well, if all you are looking for is to misdirect the enemy, and give alternate sources of power, you could have bonus DCV with a limited short range TP (any of the images could, when images resolve into one, be the original character) and a naked indirect advantage to put on your other powers.


    Lots of things to do, once you define the gameplay you need.  THEN you wrap the SFX round those.



  6. 3 hours ago, Ninja-Bear said:

    Doc I know Savage Worlds has a Bennie system though at the moment I’m sketchy on details. For me with WEG GMing, I never really used character points for the villains. I might have done it once cause I wanted the villain to escape once.


    I tried not to as GM as it simply became a bidding war and, as GM, my bank balance was infinite.


    But in WEG there was no evolution of the currency to provide points for good gameplay.  You COULD give dark side points for poor play and you COULD not restore Force points if they were used frivolously.  Both those things caused petted lips and tears, especially if it was the third (I think) dark side point which effectively made the PC a villain NPC with no chance of redemption.


    It was close to a decent system.  FFG (IMO) made it better.



  7. On 2/7/2020 at 3:09 PM, Brian Stanfield said:

    I like this idea in general. I also realize that it's a nightmare to try to teach to my new players! It makes perfect sense, and I've told them that basically everything they use is built with the Powers in HERO, but I'm pretty sure this stuff would make their heads pop! This is definitely a more advanced, albeit much cleaner, way to look at things


    Well, it all comes down to how much of the mechanical system you expose.  Wrap the character cost together and explain their Sword skill.


    Master Swordsman: you do 3D6 damage with the sword designed specifically for you.  You can pick up any weapon and add 1D6 damage to that normally listed. You can use any improvised object to deal 1D6+1 damage.


    That would be easy for anyone to understand.  You just happen to know how it balances with other abilities and can knowledgeably tweak.  Players do not usually need and almost never want to look inside the black box.  But it is what HERO provides that other systems do not.


    BTW, this particular conversation made me want to run a game where damage was a function of skill rather than weapon.  For instance, Bob from the local tavern will usually do 1D6 damage regardless of the weapon he uses.  Girondin of the Blade, will do 2D6 and 3D6-1 if he is using an edged weapon.


    An interesting twist to the usual and allows players to pick weapons with an eye to style rather than combat advantage.




  8. Well, I think you need to start by really setting out the game effects you want to achieve.  The Mirror Image stuff is all SFX.


    The SFX is that there is suddenly three of you where once there was one.  That is useful defensively because opponents need to decide which image to hit and the right one constantly changes  It is useful offensively because powers can originate from any of the three points. Yes?



  9. It is amazing the threads that get us agitated enough to post!  Who knew that HAPs would be one of them.  I woke up to 26 new posts, almost like the old days....


    Anyway, my 2 cents. 


    As a player, I hate games where I need to burn experience to stay competitive.  In those sorts of games both players and GM can burn points on the same contest.  Hate it.  TORG, WEG star wars, Heroquest (the Glorantha one) and a few others, can't remember if Fate and Savage World's do it.


    That is not to say I don't like idea of players having some narrative control of encounters and games.  I played the FFG star wars recently and their force pool idea really worked for my group. 


    "You want to sneak across the port to reach the ship you think the maguffin is in?  OK, there are a few patrols, lots of droids and mechanics and one elevated guard post.  You know a few of you are not good at sneaking.  Tell you what, turn one of the white fate points black and we'll say you all make it to the gantry of the ship". 


    This scene is a minor one.  If they all make their rolls, the same thing happens, if they don't there is a combat.  Players that like combat will refuse the offer.  Players into the strategy of sneaking through the defences will love the chance to do it without risking it. Or I might get a counteroffer, where a player suggests a different narrative way through the scene.  Not a way to win in big battles, instead an incentive to draw the players into telling a great story and deferring rather than avoiding pain.


    I prefer heroic games.  I allowed them to turn dark points white by doing good deeds and acting heroically.  Those dark points in the pool drove that kind of play from players who would normally kill prisoners and annoying NPCs.


    It is all about implementation.  Duke?  I have not yet introduced them into any of my HERO games but when I do, I will invite you to come to London to see how it would make a good game great!  🙂



  10. 10 minutes ago, PhilFleischmann said:

    And how do we expect them to learn?  By walking into a brick-and-mortar game store, picking up a HERO System book, and reading the first page?  By first buying a HERO System rule book (at a brick-and-mortar store, or online), and only then reading the first page so they can find out what they just bought?  I'd say at least 99.99% of people who have bought a HERO System book, already know what a role-playing game is.


    There is also the point that if you do an excellent job of an online blurb that everyone can watch, you might get those interested to pick up HERO first.  Rather than being in a $50 book...

  11. I think there is definitely a place for narrative mechanics in the game but I find the implementation of the Hero Dice a bit insipid.


    I want something that draws out the feel of the game played and that will vary genre by genre and even within genres.  If you do something like Hero Points you want it to encourage "good" player behaviour and reward genre appropriate action over optimum tactics.


    Ideally, the system should add to dramatic tension rather than steal it away with certainties.


    We almost need a splat book to talk about the potential uses for hero points in a variety of games and genres.



  12. 3 hours ago, Lucius said:

    I don't know about anyone else, but in my experience, the average person has literally no clue whatever about role playing games.


    The average person watches more online video than they have read books.


    I am not saying do not explain what RPGs are or how such things work.  I said save the precious book real estate for long term useful stuff that everyone who buys the book will read/consult multiple times rather than a section that RPG newbies might read once.


    Have the text online, have a couple of good videos showing the game being run, characters being built and combat being run.


    I would have no more than one side talking about RPGs in general, probably much less.  Everything in THIS game should be about THIS game.



  13. I liked the use of summon and Transform.  If you can live with the need to "mark" an item before you can summon it to you, then you do indeed provide a way to manage the process.  The wizard would need access to be able to mark it for summoning, which puts a lot of items out of reach and you could limit the summon to only a fixed number of things so that the wizard does not just eventually mark everything.  🙂

  14. 1 hour ago, Gnome BODY (important!) said:

    I disagree.  You can get a lot of useful information from them.  Not about what role-playing is, of course, but about what the designer's philosophies are.  For example, I learned that from PARANOIA's non-example of play. 

    You disagree that it is a waste of paper or that the same (or enhanced text) with video would be much more useful?

  15. 4 hours ago, PhilFleischmann said:

    And the whole "What is role-playing?  What is a role-playing game?" thing should not be part of the rule book/PDF at all, but should be available for free download/viewing on the website of EVERY RPG publisher. (And no, it doesn't have to be the exact same one for each.)


    I absolutely agree.  It is now a waste of paper and ink.  A box at the start with a link to internet text and a video of people playing the game would be MUCH more valuable.


  16. I'm with Neil.  I reckon Champions Complete would not need the full HERO rules.  First it would need DOJ to decide what their default is.  If it is Vibora Bay, fantastic, we have a measure to scale things to.  We could decide that Vibora Bay was of a particular level and focussed more on Powers than skills and provide a very cut down list of skills and a full list of powers.  We would also give very strong build advice, advice that is absolutely context driven for a particular style of play.  We could easily put in villains and a sample adventure or two because we would know precisely the kind of heroes that would be built in this game.


    I reckon all of that is possible in a reasonably slim volume.  I would have a short annex at the back (or available for download) to say what decisions had been made to make this game using the full 6E rules and encourage those who want to to change anything or everything in the game (after they have played it as written) to do so using the full 6E rules.


    I also think that this game would then have to be called something like Vibora Bay Champions rather than Champions Complete so that there would be room for other titles, like Age of the Machine Champions.



  17. On 2/8/2020 at 8:42 PM, Duke Bushido said:



    I'm forty-two feet in the air right now, so I can't really get to my books, but I'm not certain that--by the old rules-- you traded nine (or four) shots for a +4 (or +2).  As I recall, you got a +4 in exchange for _using_ all ten (or +2 for five), but you still got the. "extra" hits for each 2 you rolled below your target number (or above it, for you roll-high heathens. ;) .)  


    Obviously I HAD to go and look.  Duke is, of course, right about this.  The big interesting thing that I dont remember using is the complexity of reduced END with Autofire.


    If you have a 50 AP power (5 END) firing 10 shots, you spend 50 END for a burst.  In those days you reduced END by half until you got 1 END and the next level made it 0 END.


    that 5 END power would need three levels of Reduced END to get to 0.  5 to 2 to 1 to 0. 


    If you autofired that attack it would not be 0 END, it would be 50 to 25 to 12 to 6 END. 


    So a power that was 0 END for a single shot would cost you 6 END for autofire, unless you bought an extra 3 levels of Reduced END.  I kind of like that....

  18. 9 hours ago, SteveZilla said:

    It doesn't have to be "stored securely", as it is a small item the character has with her - small, but very important.  Should it be removed from her (pick pocket, combat grab, whatever), she becomes virtually powerless.

    For the purposes of her other powers it is *treated* as a OAF, but it itself has no powers in it.  I was thinking of a triggered power (a spell) to retrieve a wand stolen from me, so I wouldn't be rendered helpless for the rest of the combat - or until returning to town/base.  The 'focus' can still be grabbed and broken, and just grabbing it would still prevent her from casting until she retrieved it - so still an OAF in my mind.


    I think this is the very definition of a restrainable power.  You indicate that the wand appears in your hand when you shout the retrieval word.  So, someone might remove the wand from you (restraining your use that phase) but would have to find a way of preventing you shouting the retrieval word to restrain your use for a longer period.  At any time you become able to retrieve the wand, you have access to your powers again.  I dont think you need to give yourself a summoning power that, by the sounds of it, is extraneous to your other powers, and stretch the rules of that power to make it work how you want.  Instead all you need to do is decide on how the power might be restrained and come to an agreement with your GM what that is worth.



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